GS Paper II-Governance, Social Justice.
PMAY: Modi Government Approves 30,000 Affordable Houses On Private Land.
- The Ministry of Housing & Urban Affairs, on 24th july, 2017, approved construction of 30,000 affordable houses for urban poor on private land at Sholapur, Maharashtra, under Pradhan Mantri Awas Yojana (Urban). Central assistance of Rs 450 crore has also been approved for this project.
- An inter-ministerial Central Sanctioning and Monitoring Committee (CSMC), chaired by Durga Shanker Mishra, Secretary (Housing & Urban Affairs) approved this first of its kind affordable housing project on private land under PMAY (Urban) after detailed discussions with the officials of the Maharashtra Government.
- Raynagar Cooperative Housing Federation, Sholapur submitted a proposal to build 30,000 affordable houses for its members comprising of beedi and textile workers and other urban poor belonging to Economically Weaker Sections (EWS) at a total cost of Rs 1,811 crore under PMAY (Urban). The state government after due examination agreed to provide an assistance of Rs 300 crore for the same and forwarded the proposal to the ministry in March, 2016.
Key Points Of The Development-
- An inter-ministerial Central Sanctioning and Monitoring Committee approved this first of its kind affordable housing project on private land under PMAY (Urban).
- Maharashtra officials explained that the State Level Technical Committee (SLTC) set up under PMAY (Urban) has appraised the project and recommended for central funding. The ownership of the land area of 189 hectares is with the Federation which has acquired this land for building the houses and it will be the implementing agency. All the proposed beneficiaries have been AADHAR linked.
- The State officials also informed CSMC that the cost of each dwelling unit of Rs 6.03 lakh has been determined in a transparent manner and with central and state assistance, the delivery price would be Rs 3,53 lakh per house.
- On the assurance that the State Level Sanctioning and Monitoring Committee (SLSMC), set up under PMAY (Urban) will oversee the implementation of the project, the CSMC approved the project.
- This approval for the affordable housing project on private land under PMAY (Urban) is expected to trigger more such projects on private lands under the Affordable Housing in Partnership (AHP) component of PMAY (Urban). Central assistance of Rs 1.50 lakh for each beneficiary is provided under this component.
- CSMC, in its 24th meeting on 24th July, 2017 approved construction of 2,84,803 more affordable houses for urban poor under PMAY(Urban), the highest number approved in a single meeting of CSMC. The total cost of these houses to be built in six states is Rs 16,407 crore for which central assistance of Rs 4,272 crore has been approved.
- Andhra Pradesh has been sanctioned 2,25,245 houses, Uttar Pradesh-23,322, Tamil Nadu-15,374, Manipur-10,392, Assam-9,767 and Meghalaya-703.
GS Paper III- Security, Technology.
Reliance Defence Delivers 2 Patrol Vessels To Indian Navy.
- Sixteen months after Reliance Infrastructure subsidiary Reliance Defence and Engineering Ltd (RDEL) took control of Pipavav Defence and Offshore Engineering Company, two naval offshore patrol vessels (NOPVs) were launched at RDEL’s shipyard on 25th July, 2017 in Pipavav, Gujarat.
- The two NOPVs, named ‘Shachi’ and ‘Shruti’, are the first warships to be launched by a private sector shipyard in India, and were launched by Preeti Luthra, wife of Vice-Admiral Girish Luthra, Flag Officer Commanding-in-Chief, Western Naval Command.
- The two patrol boats are part of five ships under the P-21 project being constructed for the Indian Navy by RDEL. While work on the remaining three ships is progressing steadily, an official said finishing touches would be given to the two ships before they are commissioned. The ₹2,500-crore order for the NOPVs was inherited by RDEL as part of its acquisition.
Highlights Of The Development-
- The P-21 project was initially bagged by Pipavav Defence in 2011, with the first NOPV slated to be delivered by early 2015. However, financial and technical constraints dogged the shipyard, delaying the project. Ever since RDEL took over the shipyard in January 2016, the firm accelerated operations, as well as bid for and bagged other orders. It is also engaged in the construction of a training ship as well as 14 Fast Petrol Vessels (FPVs) for the Coast Guard at a cost of ₹920 crore.
- The Navy said the NOPVs, being constructed at RDEL shipyard, are armed with 76mm Super Rapid Gun Mount (SRGM) system along with two 30mm AK-630M guns which provide medium range and short range offensive capabilities.
- Vice Admiral Girish Luthra, the Flag Officer Commanding- in-Chief Western Naval Command, called the launch of the ships Shachi and Shruti a “milestone event”. The primary role of NOPVs is to undertake surveillance of the country’s vast Exclusive Economic Zone (EEZ) besides operational tasks such as anti-piracy patrols, fleet support operations, maritime security of offshore assets and coastal security operations.
- The NOPVs would increase the ocean surveillance and patrolling capabilities of the Indian Navy, the Navy said adding the armament onboard the ships is remotely controlled through an electronic fire control system.
- The ships are fitted with diesel engine driven propulsion systems and can deliver speeds up to 25 knots. All ship operations are controlled by an intelligent integrated platform management system.
Sources- Financial Express, Business Line.
GS Paper IV- Ethics, Integrity.
Rajya Sabha Passes Maritime Admiralty Bill.
- Parliament, on 24th July, 2017, gave its nod to a bill that seeks to upgrade the law related to maritime claims, arrest and detention of ships and extends jurisdiction of trial to various courts across the country.
- The Admiralty (Jurisdiction and Settlement of Maritime Claims), 2017 seeks to repeal laws such as the Admiralty Court Act, 1861, the Colonial Courts of Admiralty Act, 1890.
Key Points Of This New Bill-
- The Admiralty (Jurisdiction and Settlement of Maritime Claims), Bill, 2017, passed by the Lok Sabha in March, 2017, seeks to consolidate the laws relating to admiralty jurisdiction, legal proceedings in connection with vessels, their arrest, detention, sale and other related matters. While earlier only the High Courts of Bombay, Calcutta and Madras could take up maritime cases, the Bill extends the power to the High Courts of Karnataka, Kerala, Hyderabad, Orissa and Gujarat, besides any other High Courts as notified by the Centre.
- The bill was passed by the Rajya Sabha by a voice vote.
- Moving the bill for consideration and passage, Minister of State for Road Transport and Highways and Shipping Mansukh L Mandaviya said the maritime admiralty laws in India remain old and need to be changed in line with the changes effected globally.
- He said the government was attempting to bring clarity in law through the proposed legislation.
- Highlighting the importance of maritime trade, the minister said 95 per cent of the overall exports and imports from India are through the maritime route and 33,000 ships come to the country’s shores every year.
- Mandaviya said the government was also considering developing new ports in West Bengal, Odisha and Karnataka.
- Investments to the tune of Rs 8 lakh crore are needed in the coming years to generate employment and boost India’s shipping industry, the minister said.
- The earlier legislations came into force during the colonial era when India had only three major ports — Bombay, Calcutta and Madras. Therefore, at present, matters related to admiralty can be decided only by the High Courts of Bombay, Calcutta and Madras, even though there are 12 major ports and 205 minor ports in India.
- However, the minister informed that the bill extends this to the High Courts of Karnataka, Gujarat, Orissa, Kerala, Hyderabad and any other High Court notified by the central government.
Sources- The Economic Times, The Hindu.