Headlines: Government Plans To Sell Railways Land For Fund Collection
Union Cabinet Approved Policy On Long-Term Leasing Of Railways Land
The Union Cabinet chaired by Prime Minister Narendra Modi on Wednesday gave its assent to the revised policy for Railway land. According to this policy, railways can lease its land for cargo use for longer periods at a minimal cost. As per the experts, the government's move can enable the integrated development of railway infrastructure and cargo terminals, which is necessary for increasing the railway's revenue.
The new policy reads the land can now be leased for cargo-related activities for up to 35 years (which was five years earlier) at 1.5% of the market value of land per annum. As mentioned in the revised policy, the interest rates are also very low compared to the earlier 6% rates.
The government projected that the revision in railways land leasing policy would assist in developing a minimum of around 300 cargo terminals over the next five years. Additionally, the policy will help in generating about 1.2 lakh new job vacancies.
As per an official, the comprehensive policy document would be framed and implemented within 90 days from the date of Railways policy renewal.
Bharat Jodo Yatra: Rahul Gandhi Commences Padyatra From Kanyakumari On Day 2
Congress MP Rahul Gandhi on Thursday officially started his Bharat Jodo Yatra from Agasteeswaram town of Kanniyakumari district in Tamil Nadu. Along with the ex-Congress party chief, senior Congress leaders, including Chattisgarh CM Bhupesh Baghel, Rajasthan CM Ashok Gehlot, MP KC Venugopal, P Chidambaram, and others, began the Padyatra.
Congress party's Bharat Jodo Yatra is a major step taken by the party to combat the divisive politics of the BJP-led central government. Through this Yatra, the party is trying to awaken the country's people to the dangers of economic inequalities, social polarization, and political centralization.
During the foot march, Rahul Gandhi was joined by the father of a NEET aspirant from Tamil Nadu who committed suicide after failing the test.
Earlier, on Wednesday, the party leaders reached the southern part of the country and called off the party's campaign. In the ceremony, DMK president and Tamil Nadu CM MK Stalin was also present. The CM handed over the national flag to Mr Gandhi and showed his support for his Yatra and said, "Today, my brother @RahulGandhi has begun a journey to retrieve India's soul, to uphold the lofty ideals of our republic and to unite our country's people with love. There can be no better place than Kumari, where the Statue of Equality stands tall, to start #BharatJodoYatra.
Covid-Bulletin: India Registers 6,395 New Cases; Recovery Rate At 98.7%
According to the latest data released by the Union Health Ministry, India has recorded 6,395 new covid-19 cases in the last 24 hours. The active caseload of the country currently stands at 50,342. Meanwhile, daily recoveries continue to outnumber daily covid-19 cases registering 6,614recoveries in the previous 24 hours. The total recoveries have reached 4,39,00,204. The daily and weekly positivity rates currently stand at 1.96% and 1.88%, respectively. As per the Indian Council of Medical Research, the country has conducted 88.83 crore covid-19 tests so far. On the vaccination front, India has administered a total of 214.27 crore covid-19 doses under the nationwide vaccination drive.
Amid Fund Paucity, Government Employees In Punjab To Wait For Their Salaries
Government employees in Punjab state waited for their August month salary as the exchequer dried up due to a paucity of funds in the state.
As a general structure, employees get their salaries for the previous month on the first date of every month. However, the August month salary got delayed for over a week, as some officials aware of the matter said- the government has been facing a fund crunch due to the end of the GST compensation regime. Based on the assurance of GST compensation, the Punjab government led by Bhagwant Mann launched many public welfare schemes, which shared a significant portion of funds.
In the last fiscal year, the government received Rs 16,000 crore as GST compensation from the Centre. However, this time the regime ended its fund distribution, causing financial distress in the state. Currently, the government is mulling the possible measures to manage the emerging situation without compromising on its poll promises. With this, the sources said the government will arrange funds for crediting salaries. Additionally, salaries of Group C and D will be credited first then for the Group A and B category employees.