Rajiv Kumar Current Affairs

Government constitutes high-level committee for water management in northeast

The Government has constituted a high-level committee for proper management of water resources in North Eastern Region (NER) under Chairmanship of Rajiv Kumar, Vice-Chairman of NITI Aayog.

The Committee is tasked to facilitate optimising benefits of appropriate water management in form of agriculture, bio-diversity conservation, hydro-electric power, reduced flood damage erosion, inland water transport, forestry, fishery and eco-tourism.

Composition of Committee

It will include secretaries from the ministries of DoNER, water resources, river development and Ganga rejuvenation, power, National Disaster Management Authority (NDMA), departments of border management and space and chief secretaries of all eight north eastern states.

Terms of reference of Committee

It will appraise existing institutional arrangements (or mechanisms) for management of water resources of NER. It will also identify of gaps in existing institutional arrangements for optimal management of water resources of NER. It will suggest policy interventions required for optimally harnessing water resources for accelerating development in NER.

It will also spell out of actionable measures required for optimizing management of water resources in NER. It will  chalk out a Plan of Action for dovetailing of schemes and programmes of concerned Union Ministries as well as schemes of respective North-Eastern State Governments.

It will submit its report, including Plan of Action, by June, 2018. Ministry of Development of North Eastern Region (DoNER) will serve as coordinating point.

Background

The Brahmaputra (flows through Assam, Arunachal Pradesh) and Barak river (flows through Assam, Manipur and Mizoram) systems in NER which account for one-third of India’s run off are highly prone to floods.  Brahmaputra is one of largest river systems in world and causes considerable distress and costs on NER through frequent flooding and erosion.

During review of flood situation with Chief Ministers of Assam, Manipur, Nagaland and Arunachal Pradesh, Prime Minister Narendra Modi had announced constitution of High-Level Committee for holistic management of water resources in NER. The meeting noted thatoptimum management of water resources is cross-cutting task which requires multi-sectoral interventions and concerted strategy, including management of catchment areas in upper reaches involving concerned Central Ministries and State Governments.

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NITI Aayog constitutes Expert Task Force on Employment and Exports

The National Institution for Transforming India (NITI) Aayog has constituted Expert Task Force to provide major thrust to job creation by enhancing India’s exports. It will be headed by NITI Aayog Vice Chairman Dr Rajiv Kumar.

The task force will give sector-specific recommendations in key employment sectors for policy interventions and suggest measures to enhance trade in services with high employment potential.

Background

Majority of Indian workforce are still employed in low-productivity, low-wage jobs in small, micro and own-account enterprises. There is urgent and sustained expansion of organized sector to address India’s unemployment and under-employment issue also jobless growth issue. Moreover considering importance of exports in generating formal sector jobs, India also needs to create favorable environment in which globally competitive exporters emerge and flourish. So, it has become necessary to devise strategy to enable shift towards more labour-intensive goods and services that are destined for exports.

Terms of References

The expert task force will propose comprehensive plan of action to generate employment and alleviate under-employment and low wages by boosting India’s exports in key labour-intensive industries. It will recommend sector-specific policy interventions in key employment sectors and suggest measures to enhance trade in services with high employment potential

It will identify key macroeconomic factors constraining exports and suggesting methods to address these constraints. It will assess effectiveness of existing schemes to promote exports. It will also suggest measures to address issues related to logistics, export credits and trade facilitation.

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