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Cabinet Approves Increase In Minimum Support Prices For Kharif Crops

The highest increase in MSP is proposed for nigerseed, followed by sesamum, urad and cotton (long staple).

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NEW DELHI: The Cabinet Committee on Economic Affairs (CCEA) chaired by the Hon’ble Prime Minister Shri Narendra Modi has approved the increase in the Minimum Support Prices (MSPs) for all mandated Kharif crops for marketing season 2020-21.

The highest increase in MSP is proposed for nigerseed (Rs 755 per quintal) followed by sesamum (Rs 370 per quintal), urad (Rs 300 per quintal) and cotton (long staple) (Rs 275 per quintal). The differential remuneration is aimed at encouraging crop diversification.

The increase in MSP for Kharif Crops for marketing season 2020-21 is in line with the Union Budget 2018-19 announcement of fixing the MSPs at a level of at least 1.5 times of the All-India weighted average Cost of Production (CoP), aiming at reasonably fair remuneration for the fanners.


The expected returns to farmers over their cost of production are estimated to be highest in case of Bajra (83%) followed by urad (64%), tur (58%) and maize (53%).

For the rest of the crops, return to farmers over their cost of production is estimated to be at least 50%.

Government’s strategy is one of promoting sustainable agriculture with diversified cropping pattern matching with the country’s agro-climatic conditions, towards higher productivity without jeopardizing nation’s bio-diversity. Support is in the form of MSP as well as procurement.

Besides, with the intention of giving enough policy thrust to the income security of the farmers. Government’s production-centric approach has been replaced by income-centric approach.


Concerted efforts were made over the last few years to realign the MSPs in favour of oilseeds, pulses and coarse cereals to encourage farmers to shift to a larger area under these crops and adopt best technologies and farm practices, to correct the demand-supply imbalance.

The added focus on nutrient-rich nutri-cereals is to incentivize its production in the areas where rice-wheat cannot be grown without long term adverse implications for groundwater table.

In continuation with the above-mentioned measures, Government is taking a holistic approach towards supporting the farmers and facilitate farming-related activities in the lockdown situation due to COVID-19. Efforts are being made to facilitate the marketing of agricultural produce by the farmers.

Advisories have been issued by the Union Government to State Governments / UT to facilitate Direct Marketing, enabling direct purchase from the fanners / FPOs / Cooperatives etc. by Bulk Buyers /Big Retailers / Processors by limiting regulation under State APMC Act.

Besides, the Umbrella Scheme “Pradhan MantriAnnadataAaySanraksHanAbhiyan” (PM-AASHA) announced by the government in 2018 will aid in providing a remunerative return to farmers for their produce.


The Umbrella Scheme consists of three sub-schemes i.e. Price Support Scheme (PSS), Price Deficiency Payment Scheme (PDPS) and Private Procurement & Stockist Scheme (PPSS) on a pilot basis.

In addition, under the Pradhan MantriKisanSammanNidhi (PM-KISAN) Scheme during the lockdown period from 24.3.2020 till date, about 8.89 crore farmer families have been benefitted and an amount of Rs. 17,793 crore has been released so far.

In order to provide food security during the prevailing situation due to COVID-19 pandemic, the Government has decided to distribute pulses to the eligible households under Pradhan MantriGaribKalyanYojana (PM-GKY). About 1,07,077.85 MT pulses have so far been issued to the States/UTs.

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ECONOMY-DEVELOPMENT

Zoram Mega Food Park In Mizoram To Create 5,000 Jobs, Benefit 25,000 Farmers

It will provide direct and indirect employment to 5,000 persons and benefit about 25,000 farmers.

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AIZAWL (Mizoram): The Union Food Processing Minister Harsimrat Kaur Badal inaugurated a mega food park in Mizoram on July 21, 2020, that will benefit around 25,000 farmers and generate around 5,000 job opportunities. The Minister virtually inaugurated the park in the presence of Minister of State for Food Processing Industries Rameswar Tel and DoNER Minister Jitendra Singh and other senior Ministers of Mizoram.

The Zoram Mega Food Park is expected to immensely benefit farmers of the north-eastern state, which has an abundance of unique varieties of fruits and vegetables. Further, the modern infrastructure for food processing will benefit the farmers, growers, processors and consumers of Mizoram and adjoining areas immensely. The food park will also give a big boost to the growth of the food processing sector in the state.

The 55-acre Zoram food park is located at Khamrang village in Kolasib District, Mizoram. It is promoted by Zoram Mega Food Park Pvt Ltd.


It is the first mega food park operationalized in Mizoram. It is expected to provide direct and indirect employment up to 5,000 persons and benefit about 25,000 farmers in the core processing centre (CPC) and primary processing Centre(PPC) catchment areas.

The Zoram mega food park has been set up at a cost of Rs 75 crore. It is expected to leverage an additional investment of about Rs 250 crore in about 30 food processing units in the park and would eventually lead to an annual turnover of about Rs 450-500 Crores.

The Park also has a common administrative building for office and other uses by the entrepreneurs and 03 Primary Processing Centres (PPCs) at Champhai, Thingfal and Thenzawlhaving facilities for primary processing and storage near the farms in the catchment area to benefit farmers.


Till now, a total of 88 ministry-supported food processing projects have been sanctioned in the North Eastern Region, among which 41 have been implemented. The projects worth approximately Rs 1,000 crore have been sanctioned with subsidy support of around Rs 520 crore.

According to the Food Processing Minister Harsimrat Kaur Badal, when the 88 projects get fully completed, they would create processing and preservation capacity of about 8.66 lakh tonnes to handle agro produce worth Rs 2,166 crore.

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‘Achche Din’ For You As ‘Consumer Protection Act, 2019’ Comes Into Force

The Act provides for punishment for manufacture or sale of adulterant/spurious goods.

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NEW DELHI: The Consumer Protection Act, 2019 came into force yesterday. Briefing the media about the new law through a video conference in New Delhi yesterday, Consumer Affairs Minister Ram Vilas Paswan said that this new Act will empower consumers and help them in protecting their rights through its various notified Rules and provisions.

He said the Act includes the establishment of the Central Consumer Protection Authority, CCPA to promote, protect and enforce the rights of consumers.

The CCPA will be empowered to conduct investigations into violations of consumer rights and institute complaints or prosecution, order a recall of unsafe goods and services, order discontinuance of unfair trade practices and misleading advertisements, impose penalties on manufacturers or endorsers or publishers of misleading advertisements.


Paswan said that the rules for the prevention of unfair trade practice by e-commerce platforms will also be covered under this Act. The gazette notification for establishment of the Central Consumer Protection Authority and rules for prevention of unfair trade practice in e-commerce are under publication.

Details:

The new Act provides for simplifying the consumer dispute adjudication process in the consumer commissions, which include, among others,  empowerment of the State and District Commissions to review their own orders, enabling a consumer to file complaints electronically and file complaints in consumer Commissions that have jurisdiction over the place of his residence, videoconferencing for hearing and deemed admissibility of complaints if the question of admissibility is not decided within the specified period of 21 days.


The Minister said an Alternate Dispute Resolution mechanism of Mediation has been provided in the new Act.  This will simplify the adjudication process.

A complaint will be referred by a Consumer Commission for mediation, wherever scope for early settlement exists and parties agree for it.

The mediation will be held in the Mediation Cells to be established under the aegis of the Consumer Commissions.  There will be no appeal against settlement through mediation.

The Consumer Disputes Redressal Commission Rules, there will be no fee for filing cases up to Rs. 5 lakh.

There are provisions for filing complaints electronically, credit of amount due to unidentifiable consumers to the Consumer Welfare Fund (CWF).  The State Commissions will furnish information to Central Government on a quarterly basis on vacancies, disposal, the pendency of cases and other matters.


The New Act also introduces the concept of product liability and brings within its scope, the product manufacturer, product service provider and product seller, for any claim for compensation.

The Act provides for punishment by a competent court for manufacture or sale of adulterant/spurious goods.

The court may, in case of a first conviction, suspend any licence issued to the person for a period of up to two years, and in case of second or subsequent conviction, cancel the licence.

Under this new Act, besides general rules, there are Central Consumer Protection Council Rules, Consumer Disputes Redressal Commission Rules, Appointment of President & Members in State/District Commission Rules, Mediation Rules, Model Rules and E-Commerce Rules and Consumer Commission Procedure Regulations, Mediation Regulations and Administrative control over State Commission & District Commission Regulations.

Paswan said that the Central Consumer Protection Council Rules are provided for constitution of the Central Consumer Protection Council, an advisory body on consumer issues, headed by the Union Minister of Consumer Affairs, Food and Public Distribution with the Minister of State as Vice Chairperson and 34 other members from different fields.

The Council, which has a three-year tenure, will have Minister-in-charge of consumer affairs from two States from each region- North, South, East, West, and NER. There is also provision for having working groups from amongst the members for specific tasks.

In his concluding remarks, Shri Paswan said that in earlier Consumer Protection Act, 1986a single-point access to justice was given, which is also time-consuming.

The new act has been introduced after many amendments to provide protection to buyers not only from traditional sellers but also from the new e-commerce retailers/platforms. He said that this Act will prove a significant tool in protecting consumer rights in the country.

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ECONOMY-DEVELOPMENT

India’s Forex Reserves Reach Historic High Of USD 516.362 Bn

India’s special drawing rights with the IMF rose by 5 million dollars to reach 1.453 billion dollars.

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NEW DELHI: India’s foreign exchange reserves have swelled by 3.108 billion dollars to reach a fresh all-time high of 516.362 billion dollars in the week ended 10th July 2020.

Foreign currency assets, a major part of the overall reserves, rose by 2.372 billion dollars to 475.635 billion dollars.

In the previous week, the reserves had increased by 6.416 billion dollars to end at 513.54 billion dollars. Gold reserves surged by 712 million dollars to end at 34.729 billion dollars.


India’s special drawing rights with the International Monetary Fund rose by 5 million dollars to reach 1.453 billion dollars, while the country’s reserve position also increased by 19 million dollars to 4.545 billion dollars.

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