Andhra Pradesh Current Affairs

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Vijayawada Airport becomes International Airport

The Union Cabinet has granted international airport status for the Vijayawada Airport. The approval was given as per provisions of Andhra Pradesh Reorganisation Act, 2014. The decision was taken as the airport is witnessing significant growth in passenger traffic and also to cater to the demands made by airlines as well as the Andhra Pradesh government. The airport is currently undergoing infrastructural upgradations and improvement in facilities for international operations. The upgradation works are being carried out by the Airports Authority of India.

Significance

The international status accorded to the airport will help in boosting the domestic and international tourism besides promoting socio-economic development. It will also improve connectivity to the capital of Andhra Pradesh.

Vijayawada

Vijayawada is metropolitan city situated on the banks of the River Krishna in Andhra Pradesh. The city forms a part of Andhra Pradesh Capital Region and the hosts the headquarters of Andhra Pradesh Capital Region Development Authority. The city is one of the major trading and business centres of the state and hence called as “The Business Capital of Andhra Pradesh“.

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Andhra Pradesh Government formulates market intervention for red chilli farmers

The Andhra Pradesh state government has formulated guidelines for a market intervention exercise to help red chilli farmers in the state who are in a great distress due to the price crash in the market yard, which is the biggest in the state and the country.

As per the modalities of the scheme, chilli stocks with the farmers would be bought at the price fixed by the government and each farmer will get the additional benefit of Rs 1,500 per quintal, subject to a ceiling of 20 quintals. The price per quintal should not exceed Rs 8,000 inclusive of the Rs 1,500 per quintal being offered by the government. The scheme covers tenant farmers as well.

The state’s market intervention exercise will begin from April 20 and continue up to June 30 with a gap from May 12 to June 11 for the summer holidays.

Need

Price of Red Chilli dropped from a level of Rs 12,000-14,000 per quintal last year to below Rs 5,000 per quintal this year. This has caused huge distress among the farmers forcing the state government to initiate the market intervention exercise.

Red chillies

India accounts for 38% of global production of 18 lakh tonnes of red chillies. Andhra Pradesh and Telangana alone account for 50% of India’s production. The cost of producing the crop is very high. The farmers in Telangana shifted to chillies following the government’s advisory to shun cotton and look out for alternative crops.  In addition, favourable weather in the kharif season had also prompted farmers to grow red chillies in several areas.

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Cabinet approves setting up of Indian Institute of Petroleum and Energy at Visakhapatnam

The Union Cabinet has approved setting up of Indian Institute of Petroleum and Energy (IIPE) at Visakhapatnam, Andhra Pradesh as Institute of National Importance through an Act of Parliament.

The Institute will have the governance structure as well as legal mandate to grant degrees in a manner similar to that enjoyed by Indian Institutes of Technologies (IITs).

Key Facts
  • The enactment of separate Act will impart the required status to the IIPE to become a “Centre of Excellence” in petroleum and energy studies.
  • The Cabinet also approved Rs 655.46 crore as capital expenditure to set up IIPE and contribution of Rs 200 crore towards its Endowment Fund (in addition to a contribution of Rs 200 crore from Oil Companies).
  • The objective of setting up IIPE is to meet the quantitative and qualitative gap in the supply of skilled manpower for petroleum sector and promote research activities needed for the growth of the sector.
  • IIPE’s academic and research activities will derive strength from proximity to sector-related activities such as Visakhapatnam refinery, KG-Basin and the planned Petrochemical complex at Kakinada. 
Background

The IIPE will be set up in Andhra Pradesh as per the commitment under the 13 Schedule of Andhra Pradesh Reorganization Act, 2014.  In this regard, Andhra Pradesh Government has allocated 200 acres of land, free of cost, for setting up the institute at Sabbavaram Mandal in Visakhapatnam district. IIPE has been registered as a Society under the AP Society Registration Act, 2001 in April 2016. Its temporary campus has been set up at the Andhra University Campus for academic session 2016-17 with two undergraduate programmes namely, Petroleum Engineering and Chemical Engineering. The responsibility of mentoring the institute was taken by IIT, Kharagpur.

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