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Overview of Cabinet Approval on Jan 29, 2020

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The Cabinet Committee on Economic Affairs (CCEA) Chaired by the Prime Minister Shri Narendra Modi has approved the following proposals on January 29, 2020.Official amendments in the National Commission for Homoeopathy Bill, 2019 approved:
The CCEA has approved for the official amendments in the National Commission for Homeopathy Bill (NCH)2019. This bill which is currently pending in the Rajya Sabha, will amend the Homoeopathy Central Council (HCC) Act, 1973.

Key Points:
i.Amendment features: The amendment will make reforms in the field of Homoeopathy education and enable transparency and accountability to protect the interest of the public. Through these amendments, affordable healthcare services will be enhanced.

Homoeopathy Central Council (HCC) Act, 1973:
The act was enacted to constitute Central Council of Homoeopathy for regulation of education and practice of Homoeopathy inorder to maintain the central register of homeopathy and the matters concerned with it.
This HCC act was formed based on the patterns of Indian Medical Council Act, 1956.

Proposal for Official Amendments in National Commission for Indian System of Medicine Bill, 2019 approved:
The CCEA has approved the proposal of Official Amendments in the National Commission for Indian System of Medicine Bill, 2019 (NCIM). This bill is currently pending in the Rajya Sabha.

Key Points:

i.NCIM aim: The main purpose of NCIM is to promote equity by supplying adequate quality of medical professionals in the Indian system of medicine thus enforcing high ethical standards overall.

ii.NCIM Bill benefits:The bill will lead to regulations in the Indian medicine system and will also promote affordable healthcare services across the country.

Allocation of 30% of NEC’s allocation for new projects in deprived areas, society’s neglected sections approved:
The CCEA has given its approval to allocate 30% North Eastern Council’s (NEC’s) allocation for new projects under the already existing “Schemes of North Eastern Council”.

i.Focus areas: This 30% allocation is to focus on the development of deprived areas; deprived/neglected sections of society & emerging priority sectors in the North eastern States. The remaining allocation will be bifurcated into 2 components with the State component’s share being 60% & the central component’s share being 40%.

ii.Other approvals: Apart from the 30% allocation, the govt has also approved the following:

  • NEC guidelines to be revised.
  • Projects under state component will be allowed, up to 25% of all the northeastern state’s normal allocation for sectors not covered in NEC’s mandate but to sectors that are considered as per local felt needs.

iii.Projects under existing “Schemes of NEC” will benefit marginalized and vulnerable groups of people in backward and neglected areas of the North Eastern States.

Extension of PLR Scheme for Port Trust & Dock Labour Board employees beyond 2017-18 approved:
The CCEA has given its approval to extend the already existing Productivity Linked Reward (PLR) Scheme beyond 2017-18. The extension will be made applicable until any changes/ amendments made in the scheme.

Scheme benefits:

i.PLR scheme boosts industrial relationship and the work atmosphere in the Port Sector, apart from generating productivity.

ii.The scheme will benefit 28,821 Major Port Trusts and Dock employees/workers per annum. The yearly estimated outgo will be Rs. 46 crore.

iii.PLR calculation: PLR will now be calculated on existing wage ceiling for calculation of Bonus at Rs. 7000/- per month.

iv.There is an existing scheme of PLR for employees where the PLR is granted based on composite Ports Performance Index (50% weightage to All India Performance and 50% weightage to individual port performance) on a yearly basis.

Medical Termination of Pregnancy (Amendment) Bill, 2020 approved:
The CCEA has given its approval to the Medical Termination of Pregnancy (Amendment) Bill, 2020. This bill which will be introduced in parliament soon will amend the Medical Termination of Pregnancy Act, 1971. The amenendment will increase access of women to safe abortion services. The Ministry of Health and Family Welfare(MoHFW) proposed amendments after consultation with various stakeholders and several other ministries.

Feature of amendments:

  • Opinion on pregnancy termination: Opinion of 1 provider to terminate pregnancy up to 20 weeks of gestation (period of development inside the womb) will be required. For 20-24 weeks opinion of 2 providers will be required for termination.
  • 24 week gestation limit: Upper gestation limit from 20 to 24weeks will be defined in the amendments to MTP (Medical Termination of Pregnancy) rules for special category women. The special category includes survivors of rape, victims of incest, differently-abled women, Minors etc.
  • Upper gestation ineligibility: The upper gestation limit will not be applicable in cases of substantial foetal abnormalities diagnosed by Medical Board.
  • Identity hidden: The identity of the woman whose pregnancy has been terminated will not be revealed except to person authorised in any law for the time being in force.
  • New clause to be added: New clauses under certain sections of the Medical Termination of Pregnancy Act, 1971 will be included. This has been done to increase upper gestation limit for termination of pregnancy under particular conditions.

About Union Cabinet:
The Union cabinet exercises the executive authority in India. The senior minister in the cabinet are called as cabinet ministers, junior minister as minister of state and rarely deputy ministers. The cabinet is led by the Prime Minister.