By Neeraj Bajpai
A new Black Money Act has been ected with strict pelty provisions. Special Investigation Team has been constituted which is chaired by ex-Supreme Court Judge. Enhanced enforcement measures have resulted in un-earthling of tax evasion of approximately Rs 50,000 crore of indirect taxes and undisclosed income of Rs 21,000 Crore (Prov.).
In the Defence sector, long pending demand of 40 years of the Armed Forces of One Rank one Pay was agreed. Annual recurring expenditure will be Rs 7,488.70 crore.
Since the launch of the Swachh Bharat Mission on 2nd October, 2014, 176.89 lakh toilets have already been constructed. In addition, 10.89 lakh toilets were constructed under MGNREGS. In the first two years of NDA Government, 58.54 lakh and 127.41 lakh toilets have been constructed in 2014-15 and in 2015-16.
A Central Sector Scheme North East Road Sector Development Scheme (NERSDS) has been introduced for rehabilitation/ construction / up-gradation of neglected inter-state roads in North East Region (NER). On 18th January, 2016, Sikkim was declared the 1st Organic State of the country.
On the renewable energy front, the Government has upscaled the target of renewable energy capacity to 175 GW by the year 2022 which includes 100 GW from solar, 60 GW from wind, 10 GW from bio-power and 5 GW from small hydro-power. The government has revised the tiol Solar Mission target of Grid connected Solar power projects from 20,000 MW by 2022, by five times to generate 1,00,000 MW solar power by 2022.
The Pradhan Mantri Ujjwala Yoja - a scheme to provide free LPG connections to women from BPL households- was launched on May 1, this year, from Ballia, Uttar Pradesh. Under the scheme, Rs 8,000 crore has been allocated for providing 5 crore LPG connections to BPL women in the next three years. The scheme provides a fincial support of Rs 1,600 for each LPG connection to the BPL households. The Ujjwala Yoja is dedicated towards safeguarding rural women from the drudgery of cooking in unhealthy kitchens filled with firewood/ charcoal smoke. Providing LPG connections to BPL households will ensure universal coverage of cooking gas in the country.
The government has decided to provide to provide 24x7 power across the country by 2019 by creating cost effective infrastructure which was sustaible and inclusive of clean energy solutions. The Union Government is working tirelessly to achieve this milestone before time. It has also taken a joint initiative with States for preparation of State specific documents for 24X7 Power for All. Documents for 21 States mely Andhra Pradesh, Assam, Bihar, Chhattisgarh, Goa, Gujarat, Harya, Jharkhand, Kartaka, Kerala, Maharashtra, Meghalaya, Orissa, Punjab, Rajasthan, Sikkim, Telanga, Madhya Pradesh, galand and Himachal Pradesh and Uttarakhand have already been signed till 30th April 2016.
In the Railways, a number of plans were unveiled with key thrust on consolidation of schemes already underway like Automatic Destition Alerts to passengers through SMS for Rajdhani and Duronto trains. E-ticketing facility launched for disabled persons and for accredited jourlist on concession pass, Mobile charging facilities in all new general class coaches have been initiated. Out of 1,252 stations identified for upgradation to Adarsh Stations, 986 stations have so far been developed. In the last two years, 160 were developed. New Generation system has been put in place which can book 7200 online tickets instead of 2000 tickets per minute and can attend 2,00,000 enquiries instead of 50000 per minute, launched.
Department of Science & Technology continued to implement its schemes and programmes during 2015-16 under six broad categories viz. Human Capacity Building in S&T; Institutiol Capacity Building; Technology Capacity Strengthening; S&T Competitiveness through Alliances, Partnerships and R&D Missions; Societal Contract of S&T; Science, Technology and Innovation Policy.
The Telecom sector had maximum FDI and for the deeper digital penetration in rural areas, BharatNet programme was taken up in mission mode to connect all 2,50,000 Gram Panchayats (over 600 million rural citizens) in the country with 100 mbps broadband to bridge the rural coverage gap both for broadband penetration and voice. Like wise, Information and Broadcasting Ministry resorted to many new initiatives.