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CCEA approves 9.4% hike in raw jute MSP for 2017-18 season

The Cabinet Committee on Economic Affairs (CCEA) has approved increase in the Minimum Support Price (MSP) for raw Jute for 2017-18 season in order to protect the economic interests of the farmers.

The MSP was increased to Rs. 3500/- per quintal for 2017-18 season, an increase of Rs. 300/- (9.4%) over the previous year.

Key Facts
  • Jute is long, soft, shiny vegetable fiber mainly used as raw material for Packaging Industry. It is also called as the golden fiber for its colour and high cash value.
  • The increase in MSP will benefit Jute industry which supports the livelihood of around 40 lakh farm families and 3.7 lakh workers directly employed in the organised mills and in tertiary sector and allied activities.
  • These farm families are mainly concentrated in three eastern states viz. West Bengal, Bihar and Assam which account for over 95% of the total area under jute production in the country.
  • National Seeds Corporation Limited (NSCL) is promoting new varieties of jute viz., JRO-204, JBO-2003, JRS-517, JRC-532 and JRO-2407 under National Food Security Mission (NFSM)-Commercial Crops.
  • In this regard, NSCL has entered into agreement for promotion of new varieties of jute seeds in the jute growing states.

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CCEA approves extension of implementation of CCTNS Project by one year

The Cabinet Committee on Economic Affairs (CCEA) has approved t extension of the implementation phase of the Crime and Criminals Tracking Network and Systems (CCTNS) Project for another year beyond 31 March 2017.

The proposal in this regard was forwarded by the Union Ministry of Home Affairs. The extension will help in achieving the remaining objectives of the project comprehensively.

What is Crime and Criminals Tracking Network and Systems (CCTNS) Project?

CCTNS is a mission mode project under the National e-Governance Plan of Central Government that aims at creating a comprehensive and integrated system for enhancing the efficiency and effectiveness of policing by adopting of principle of e-Governance. It seeks to create nationwide networking infrastructure for evolution of IT-enabled-state-of-the-art tracking system for investigation of crime and detection of criminals. It was originally approved in 2009.

Objective of CCTNS
  • The core objective of CCTNS is to connect all the police stations so that any of the police stations can contact any other police station.
  • The interlinking of police stations will facilitate collection, storage, retrieval, analysis and transfer the information among police stations, state headquarters and central police organizations.
  • Under it, approximately 14,000 police stations throughout the country will be automated along with 6000 higher offices in police hierarchy. Scientific and technical organizations will be also connected with it.
  • Moreover, Inter-operable Criminal Justice System (ICJS) also aims to integrate the CCTNS project with the e-courts and e-prisons databases and with the other pillars of the criminal justice system. It was added in 2015.
Key Features of the project
  • Deliver various web based police related services to citizens and computerise police processes.
  • Facilitate a pan-India search of crime and criminal records of individuals through a national database.
  • Generate crime and criminal reports at the state and central level to inform policy interventions.
Benefits
  • Facilitate transparency and speed in police service delivery, online registration of complaints and crime reporting.
  • Provide pan-India search on complete national crime and criminal database that is make database accessible to the Investigating Officers throughout the country.
  • Improve inter-state tracking of criminal movement by provide search facility to police in regional languages.
  • Provide reliable network connectivity to all Police Stations in the country.
  • National level crime analytics that will be published at, increased frequency to help policy and law makers in taking data backed timely actions and in making appropriate policy interventions.
  • It will expedite various kinds of police verification requests and investigation by integrating the project various e-Governance projects such as Aadhaar, National Population Register, Vaahan Project etc.
  • Enhance hi-tech investigation capability by incorporating advanced features such as biometric based identification, trend and pattern analytics etc.

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CCEA approves amendments in Mega Power Policy 2009

The Cabinet Committee on Economic Affairs (CCEA) has approved amendments in the Mega Power Policy, 2009 to push 31 GW stranded projects entailing an investment of Rs 1.5 lakh crore.

The initiative mainly aims at bringing down power tariff for making electricity more affordable and achieving the ambitious goal of 24X7 power for all.

Key Facts
  • The amendment extends the time period for the provisional Mega projects (25 projects), for furnishing the final Mega certificates to the Tax authorities to 120 months instead of 60 months from the date of import.
  • However, developers will be required to keep their Bank Guarantee (in lieu of duty exemption claimed) or Fixed Deposit Receipt (FDR) alive.
  • CCEA also approved 25 projects for Mega Policy benefits in proportion to long term PPA (Power Purchase Agreement), as permitted under the policy, once specified threshold capacity of project is commissioned.
  • However, the money realized by the developer, as a result of release of proportionate Bank Guarantee will first be utilized for repayment of the Bank dues by the developer.
  • Further a suitable mechanism will be worked in consultation with Department of Revenue (Finance Ministry) for operationalisation of release of proportionate Bank Guarantee.
Comment

This decision is expected to enable developers to competitively bid for PPAs in future. Once the developer commissions the specified threshold capacity, proportional mega benefits will facilitate easing out liquidity crunch with the banks/developers and improve the viability of their projects. Increased power availability will further boost country’s overall growth and also ensure that cost of power to the consumers does not increase.

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