West Bengal Current Affairs - 2019

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Cope India 2019: India, US air exercise to be held in West Bengal

Indian Air Force (IAF) and US Air Force (USAF) will participate in bilateral exercise ‘COPE INDIA 2019’ – scheduled to be held between December 3 and 14, 2019 in West Bengal.  The bilateral flying training programme will be held at two important airbases in West Bengal – Air Force Station Kalaikunda and Air Force Station Arjan Singh at Panagarh.

IAF’s Kalaikunda station is important training air base for IAF, Air Force Station Arjan Singh at Panagarh has second squadron of C130J Super Hercules aircraft. The first squadron of the C130J Super Hercules is based at Hindon.

COPE INDIA 2019

It will be long-standing bilateral US Pacific Air Forces (PACAF)-sponsored Field Training Exercise (FTX), conducted with IAF. It will be focused on enhancing US-Indian mutual cooperation and building on existing capabilities, aircrew tactics and force employment. It will showcase US and India’s efforts and commitment to free and open Indo-Pacific region. Around 200 US airmen with 15 aircraft from 18th Wing at Kadena Air Base in Japan and 182 Airlift Wing of the Illinois Air National Guard will participate in it alongside their IAF counterparts.

Background

Cope India is series of international Air Force exercises between Indian Air Force (IAF) and United States Air Force (USAF) conducted on and over Indian soil. The first such exercise was conducted at IAF air force station in Gwalior from February 2004. The exercise included flight tests, practice and demonstrations as well as lectures on subjects related to aviation. The exercise has evolved to incorporate subject matter expert exchanges, air mobility training, airdrop training and large-force exercises, in addition to fighter-training exercises. The exercise was repeated in 2005, 2006, 2009 and was last held in 2010.

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CCEA approves extension of norms for mandatory packaging in Jute Materials

Cabinet Committee on Economic Affairs (CCEA) has approved to expand the scope of mandatory packaging norms under Jute Packaging Material (JPM) Act, 1987. It has approved that 100% of the food grains and 20% of sugar shall be mandatorily packed in diversified jute bags. Initially 10% of indents of jute bags for packing foodgrains will be placed through reverse auction on GEM portal. This will gradually help to usher in a regime of price discovery.

Impact of this decision

It will give a fillip to development of jute sector and impetus to the diversification of the jute industry. It will increase quality and productivity of raw jute and also boost and sustaining demand for jute product. It will benefit farmers and workers located in Eastern and North Eastern regions of country particularly in the states of West Bengal, Bihar, Odisha, Assam, Andhra Pradesh, Meghalaya and Tripura.

Jute Sector

Jute is one of the important natural fibers after cotton in terms of cultivation and usage. Its cultivation is dependent on climate, season, and soil. Almost 85% of world’s jute cultivation is concentrated in the Ganges Delta. India is largest producer or cultivator of jute in the world (around 60%) followed by Bangladesh and China. Top jute producing states are West Bengal, Bihar, Assam and Odisha.

This sector in India is predominantly dependent on Government which purchases jute products more than Rs. 6,500 crore every year. Government has been making concerted efforts for the development of jute sector considering that nearly 3.7 lakh workers and approximately 40 lakh farmers are dependent for their livelihood on jute sectors.

Government is also making concerted efforts for development of jute sector. It is increasing quality and productivity of raw jute, diversification of jute sector and also boosting and sustaining demand for jute product. The intensive Government support is to sustain core demand for jute sector and to support livelihood of workers and farmers dependent on sector.

Month: Categories: National

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