Centre allows Karnataka to access Rs 9.8k-cr labour cess, mineral funds
The Centre’s decision to allow state governments to dip into their construction cess fund and district mineral fund to meet expenses arising out of the Covid-19 spread has come as a big relief to the Karnataka administration, which is already under financial stress.
While the state has collected around Rs 8,000 crore as construction cess over the years, it has Rs 1,840 crore in district mineral funds. As per the stipulated rules, construction cess should be used to help out construction workers after their retirement age or for compensations, while the district mineral fund is meant for rehabilitation and restoration of mining-affected areas.
The government is also releasing two months’ social security pensions to beneficiaries in April first week, besides offering wage advance to farm labourers under the rural employment guarantee scheme.
To help petty shop owners who have lost their livelihood in the past 15 days, the government has announced waiver of loans availed by them under the Badavara Bandhu scheme.
SpaceX to launch its first manned flight to ISS in 2020 May
SpaceX has announced that it is to launch its first manned flight to the International Space Station (ISS) in May 2020. The announcement comes despite the COVID-19 epidemic.
SpaceX’ Falcon 9 rocket is to launch the Crew Dragon. It will carry NASA astronauts Bob Behnken and Doug Hurley to space from Launch Complex 39A at NASA’s Kennedy Space Center in Florida.
NASA is to quarantine the astronauts for two weeks before their missions to ensure they don’t carry illnesses to space.
Govt taking positive steps for listing Bhojpuri, Rajasthani & Bhoti into 8th Schedule of constitution
The Union Government is taking positive steps for the listing of three languages Bhojpuri, Rajasthani and Bhoti into the Eighth Schedule of the Constitution.
The issue was raised during Zero hour in Lok Sabha by Jagdambika Pal of the BJP.
He urged the government to consider the listing of these languages into the Eighth schedule.
Mr Pal said that almost 20 crore people in 16 countries speak them.
The Ladakhi language also called Bhoti is a Tibetic language spoken in the Ladakh union territory of India.
Konark Sun Temple and Statue of Unity to be included in ‘Iconic Sites’ list
The famous Black Pagoda, the Sun temple in Konark in Puri district of Odisha is to be included in the ‘Iconic Sites’ list of 19 monuments, informed Union Culture and Tourism Minister Prahlad Singh Patel.
Accordingly, the Sun temple will be developed as an iconic site by the Centre.
The Union Minister further said that the Statue of Unity in Gujarat and the Sun temple in Odisha will be included in the said list as the total number of monuments in the list is to be raised from 17 to 19.
Union Finance Minister Nirmala Sitharaman in her budget speech for 2019-20 fiscal had announced allocations to develop infrastructure at 17 famous tourist places across the country to develop these monuments as iconic sites.
Rs 20,466.94 crores of loans sanctioned under Stand Up India Scheme since inception
Rs 20,466.94 crores of loans have been sanctioned under Stand Up India Scheme to over 91,000 accounts upto 10.03.2020 since inception of the Scheme.
Giving the details of the Scheme, the Minister said that the Stand Up India Scheme was launched by the Government on 5th April, 2016.
The Scheme facilitates bank loans between Rs 10 lakh and Rs 1 crore to at least one Scheduled Caste/Scheduled Tribe borrower and at least one woman borrower, per bank branch of Scheduled Commercial Banks (SCBs), for setting up greenfield enterprises in the manufacturing, services or the trading sectors.
NHA ties up with Private hospitals to fight against Coronavirus
The Ministry of Health and Family Welfare (MoHFW) signed an agreement with the National Health Authority (NHA). The aim is to identify capacities to admit patients from among 19,840 empanelled hospitals under the scheme. Also, on 18 March, the Union Health Minister Harsh Vardhan chaired a high-level review meeting with chiefs of All India Institute of Medical Sciences, RML, and Safdarjung Hospital to examine infrastructure preparedness.
The Ministry is in the process of shortlisting tertiary care units that are accredited to assist in the process.
The NHA is planning the rates to include Covid-19 packages in Pradhan Mantri Jan Arogya Yojana (PMJAY).
Ministry of Culture established institute to promote Buddhist studies, art, and Culture
Ministry of Culture has established an institute named Central Institute of Himalayan Culture Studies (CIHCS) at Dahung, Arunachal Pradesh.
The main objective of CIHCS is to preserve ancient Buddhist manuscripts, to promote research in different aspects of Buddhism, digitize ancient Buddhist text preserved in the languages of Pali, Sanskrit, Tibetan, Chinese, Japanese, and other Asian languages through the system of a modern university.
The move by the government is to provide education in Buddhist philosophies, Culture, and Art.
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