Punjab [PPSC] Current Affairs - 2020

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Punjab Assembly passed resolution to seek 33% reservation for women in Parliament

Punjab Legislative Assembly unanimously passed a resolution for seeking 30% reservation for women in Parliament and State legislative assembly. The resolution was moved by Chief Minister Captain Amarinder Singh, urging the Centre to enact it. The bill would ensure the representation of men and women equally in national electoral process.

Key facts

The women Reservation Bill will ensure the balanced representation of women in electoral and decision-making process. The bill would reserve 180 seats out of 543 seats in Lok Sabha and 1370 seats out of 4109 seats in State Assembly.

Apart from that, State will give more parole holidays for prisoners extending from 12 weeks to 16 weeks during 550th birth anniversary celebration of Guru Nanak Dev.

Other Resolutions passed

  • The state assembly passed other amendments in Punjab Goods and Service Tax Bill, The Punjab Panchayat Raj Bill, The Punjab Good Conduct Prisoners Bill, The Punjab Regulation of Cattle Feed, Concentration and Mineral Mixtures Bill.
  • The Punjab Goods and Service tax Bill will enable small taxpayer to quarterly file returns and tax payment.
  • The Cattle feed Bill will provide framework for proper regulation of animal husbandry sector.
  • The State Assemble unanimously passed another resolution for swapping of land with Pakistan to make it Kartarpur.

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Union Cabinet approves implementation of Shahpurkandi Dam on river Ravi in Punjab

Union Cabinet has approved implementation of Shahpurkandi Dam Project on river Ravi in Punjab. It also has approved central assistance of Rs. 485.38 crore (for irrigation component) over five years period from 2019 to 2023. The project will be implemented by Punjab Government with central assistance. It will be completed by June 2022.

Funding

The total cost of this project is Rs. 1973.53 crore (Irrigation component: 564.63 cr, Power component: 1408.90 cr.) Out of this, Rs 485.38 cr would be provided as Central Assistance. Funding for central assistance will be made through National Bank for Agriculture and Rural Development (NABARD) under existing system for funding of 99 Pradhan Mantri Krishi Sinchayee Yojana- Accelerated Irrigation Benefit Programme (PMKSY-AIBP) projects under Long Term Irrigation Fund (LTIF).

Significance

This project will help minimising some of water of River Ravi which at present is going waste through Madhopur Headworks downstream to Pakistan. It will create irrigation potential of 5,000 hectares in Punjab and 32,173 hectares in Jammu & Kashmir on completion. Besides, Punjab will be able to generate 206 MW of hydropower.

Background

Indus Waters Treaty was signed between India and Pakistan in 1960 for sharing of Indus waters. According to this treaty, India got the full rights for utilization of waters of three eastern rivers namely Ravi, Beas and Satluj. Bilateral agreement was signed between Punjab and J&K in January 1979 for construction of RanjitSagar Dam (Thein Dam) and Shahpurkandi Dam by Punjab Government. RanjitSagar Dam was commissioned in August 2000.  ShahpurKandi Dam project was proposed on River Ravi. The Project was initially approved by erstwhile Planning Commission in November 2001 and was included under AIBP for funding its irrigation component. However, works could not progress much due to non-availability of funds on part of Punjab Government for power component and later interstate issues with J&K. Series of meetings were held bilaterally between both states as well as at Central Government level. Finally, agreement was reached between both states under aegis of Ministry of Water Resources in September, 2018.

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