West Bengal Current Affairs - 2019

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Chhattisgarh withdraws general consent accorded to the CBI to probe cases in the state

The government of Chhattisgarh has withdrawn the general consent accorded to the Central Bureau of Investigation (CBI) to probe the cases in the state. The general consent was withdrawn under Section 6 of the Delhi Special Police Establishment Act, 1946.

Delhi Special Police Establishment Act, 1946

The Central Bureau of Investigation (CBI) derives its powers to investigate the cases from the Delhi Special Police Establishment Act, 1946. The Delhi Special Police Establishment Act, 1946 provides for a special police force to investigate the offences specified by the central government through the Gazette notification.

Section 6

Section 6 of the Delhi Special Police Establishment Act, 1946 makes the consent of the states mandatory for the CBI to exercise its power and jurisdiction in the state.  The government of Chhattisgarh has revoked section 6 of the Delhi Special police investigation act to withdraw the general consent.

Reasons for Withdrawal

The government of Chhattisgarh has cited the following reasons for the withdrawal:

  • The credibility and integrity of the CBI have been compromised under the present central government.
  • As a result of the free hand to CBI to operate in the state, the law and order and state officers were being disturbed.

The CBI is now required to seek permission from the state government before initiating any investigations.

Chhattisgarh has joined the list of West Bengal and Andhra Pradesh which have withdrawn the general consent for CBI to undertake investigations.

Krishak Bandhu scheme of West Bengal

The government of West Bengal has announced the Krishak Bandhu scheme to address the farm distress in the state.

Features of the Scheme

The important features of the scheme are:

  • The West Bengal government will give annual financial assistance of Rs 5,000 per acre in two instalments, one during Kharif and another during Rabi season.
  • Farmers can also take the financial assistance at one go.
  • The scheme also provides for a life insurance cover of Rs 2,00,000 in case of death, irrespective of the cause, of an earning family member (farmer) aged between 18 and 60 years. Framers are not required to pay any premium to avail the insurance benefit.
  • The scheme would cover 72 lakh farmer and share-cropper families in the State.

Financial burden on the exchequer

The average land holding per cultivator in West Bengal is pegged at around 0.5 hectares (or 1.2 acres). Hence the average financial assistance to a farmer would come around to Rs 6000. To even cover 50 lakh farmers, the burden on the exchequer would be Rs 3000 Cr.