Tuesday, 7 July 2015

Daily News Mail - News of 05/07/2015

Govt. looking for common ground to break impasse over Land Bill
Following directions from the Prime Minister’s Office (PMO), “thinking heads” in the Modi government have begun to formulate a strategy for breaking the impasse in the Joint Parliamentary Committee (JPC) over the controversial Land Acquisition Bill.
  • Options are being discussed to find a meeting ground for the government and the Opposition parties on three contentious provisions of the Bill — the consent clause, the social impact analysis and issues related to food security.
  • The UPA’s Land Acquisition Act required that at least 80 per cent of landowners must give consent to land acquisition for private projects and 70 per cent for public-private partnership projects.
  • The Modi government’s Bill proposes to exempt from consent five kinds of projectsdefence, rural infrastructure, affordable housing, industrial corridors and infrastructure — when the Centre owns the land. One option was to peg the number of consenting landowners to somewhere between 51 per cent and 80 per cent, but to apply this clause only to acquisitions for purely private use.
  • A new category of “essential infrastructure” will be created and defined for both rural and urban areas that will be exempted even from this redefined consent clause.
  • Lastly, those acquisitions for PPP projects where land will continue to vest with the government will be exempted.
  • “This will cover most of the five categories of infrastructure to which the Ordinance provides exemption,” the source said. The discussions on options are still under way. If the PMO gives the go-ahead, senior BJP leaders or Ministers could take them up — formally or informally — with the Opposition.
  • “The options will have to be such that both sides will be able to claim victory,” the source said.
  • On social impact assessment, one of the options, said the source, was to break it up into two parts: decide whether or not to go ahead with acquisition; and, decide on compensation and rehabilitation and resettlement and apply as per requirements of the projects.
Move to link digital locker with Aadhaar challenged
  • A public interest petition, challenging the government's move to link digital locker facility to Aadhaar cards of citizens, was filed in the Supreme Court.
  • The dedicated personal storage service is part of an initiative launched under Digital India programme on July 1 by Prime Minister Narendra Modi to help citizens digitally store documents like PAN card, passport, mark sheets and degree certificates. It also does away with the inconvenience of physical documents.
  • RTI activist and Gurgaon resident Sudhir Yadav in his petition urged the court to quash the order making Aadhaar mandatory for availing digital locker facility, saying it violates the fundamental right to equality and discriminate against persons who have no Aadhaar card.
Corporation Bank launches first MUDRA card
The MUDRA (Micro Units Development and Refinance Agency) card under the Pradhan Mantri MUDRA Yojana (PMMY) scheme was launched by the Corporation Bank.
  • The card facilitates the withdrawal and use of the working capital finance by micro entrepreneurs. 
  • Corporation Bank was the first bank to launch the MUDRA Card based on the RuPay platform, said a release from the bank.
Category of Loans offered:
  • Three loan schemes are offered to the entrepreneurs based on their capacity to repay. “Shishu” scheme provides loan up to Rs.50,000. while a loan amount up to Rs. 5 lakh will be lent under “Kishore” scheme. Under “Tarun” scheme loan up to Rs. 10 lakh will be offered.

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