Sikkim Current Affairs - 2019
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The Cooperatives Department of Maharashtra has decided to appoint managers at six major cities across the country to enhance agribusiness between cooperatives in Maharashtra and other States.
Maharashtra has a surplus of products such as onion, tomato, grapes, pomegranate, mangoes and raisins. These are traded in other states and in the process the traders accumulate the huge profits while the farmers are paid low due to the surplus production in the state.
To bridge the mismatch and ensure a better price for farmers and reduced burden on consumers, the Maharashtra government would appoint Managers at the cities Guwahati, Kolkata, Chennai, New Delhi, Chandigarh and Jaipur to look for business opportunities in other States.
Strengthening the Cooperatives
The Maharashtra government would strengthen the farmers cooperatives in the state to revive and enhance the collection and trading capabilities of cooperative institutions. The strengthening of cooperatives would be through two step prolonged strategy:
- Old cooperatives, which have been in the State since the 1950s, are being revived with the help of the new strategy and funding from institutions such as the World Bank.
- Provide an air freight subsidy on a pilot basis to carry high-value agricultural produce to the North East, Sikkim and Jammu & Kashmir, which will build up the appetite and demand from local markets.
The cooperatives will sell supply fruits and vegetables directly to similar cooperatives institutions in other States. The profits would be retained by the cooperatives owned by the farmers.
For the first time, Antonov-32 AN-32 transport aircraft of the Indian Air Force (IAF) carried out a successful landing at Sikkim’s Pakyong, one of the highest airfields in the country.
The successful landing has assumed great importance due to its strategic location of 60 km from the India-China border and it is located 4,500 feet above sea level. The successful landing is a booster for the Indian efforts which is aggressively overhauling the infrastructure, particularly in the North-Eastern region, following the Doklam standoff in 2017.
Pakyong Airport is a Greenfield airport near Gangtok, the capital of the state of Sikkim. It is the first greenfield airport to be constructed in the Northeastern Region of India.
The airport is strategically important and the Indian Air Force is also building on the ability to land certain military aircraft at the Pakyong Airport. Prior to the inauguration of the Pakyong Airport by Prime Minister Narendra Modi on 24th September 2018, Sikkim was the sole state in India without a functional airport and Sikkim was dependent on the airport at Bagdogra in the neighbouring state of West Bengal, and Paro Airport in Bhutan.