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Himachal Pradesh Cabinet meeting held on 2nd may 2020 was presided over by Chief Minister Jai Ram Thakur . A presentation was made in the Cabinet regarding steps taken for economic revival and economic reforms to be initiated by the State Government after lockdown.
120 days assured employment to the urban populace under Mukhya Mantri Shahari Rojgar Guarantee Yojna:
It was decided that to revive the economy in the State in the wake of corona pandemic, 120 days assured employment would be provided to the urban populace under a new Mukhya Mantri Shahari Rojgar Guarantee Yojna. For this, if required, adequate training would be provided for their skill upgradation.
During this pandemic, thousands of people of the State have come back from other States having experience and expertise in various fields. They would be identified and trained accordingly to provide them employment and self-employment avenues. It was also decided that expenditure on development works would be expedited in the State. However, unproductive and wasteful expenditure would be curtailed.
2000 thousand each to be provided to one lakh workers reg. under the building and other construction workers board:
The State Government had provided Rs.2000 each to about one lakh workers registered under Building and Other Construction Workers Board and for this Rs. 20 crore had been spent. Now the Government decided to provide another Rs. 2000 each to these workers.
Govt. would provide all possible help farmers to market their produce:
Due to Covid-19 pandemic, agriculturists and horticulturists of the State have been facing huge losses. The farmers suffered huge losses as they were not able to market flowers and other exotic vegetables. Therefore, the Government had decided to compensate them to some extent. The Government was also endeavouring that it would provide all possible help to market their produce in the markets.
Cabinet decided to waive off elecricity demand charges for next six months for tourism industry.
Tourism industry was worst affected due to this pandemic Therefore, Government had decided to waive off electricity demand charges for the period of six months thereby providing them relief of about Rs. 15 crore. Similarly, excise and taxation license fee would be waived off and lifting quota of bars would be on pro-rata basis.
Govt. would provide support to HPTDC for paying salaries of the employees also 55 crores provided to HRTC
providing support to the Corporation for paying salaries of its employees. In addition to this, token tax and special road tax would be waived off for 4 months and no penalty would be imposed on owners of private vehicles on account of delay on renewal of registration and permits etc. Rs. 55 crore help would be provided to HRTC.
To support the industry, GST refunds would be made at the earliest. HPSEB Ltd. has also suffered due to less demand of the industry, thus it would be adequately compensated.
Taskforce to be made for the revival of the economy:
It was decided to constitute a Task Force headed by Jal Shakti Minister Mahender Singh to give suggestions for other remedial measures to be taken to revive the economy. The other members of this Sub Committee would be Education Minister Suresh Bhardwaj, Industries Minister Vikram Singh and Transport Minister Govind Thakur etc.
It was also decided that the State Government would also take up the matter regarding EPFO , ESIC at appropriate level so that the same could be redressed at the earliest.
The Cabinet decided to convert the part time Class-IV workers engaged in various departments (except the part time water carriers in Education Department) who have completed eight years of continuous services as on 31st March, 2020 and those would be completing their eight years of continuous services on 30th September, 2020 as daily wagers.
Retails excise licensees would not be required to deposit any excise levies for the period liquor vends remained closed :
It also decided to give post facto approval for extension of Excise Policy, 2019-20 upto 31st May, 2020 and operation of Excise Policy 2020-21 from 1st June, 2020 to 31st May, 2021. The retail excise licensees would not be required to deposit any excise levies for the period liquor vends remained closed due to the COVID-19 lockdown after 22nd March, 2020. The retail excise licensees will be allowed to lift the remaining Minimum Guaranteed Quota of 2019-20 if due, against the License fee deposited before 31st March, 2020 and in case the complete License Fee has not been deposited by 31st March, 2020 then such excise licensees will be allowed to lift the pending quota against the deposition of the pending Excise License Fee for 2019-20 in the month of April/May, 2020 whenever the vends are opened. If any, retail excise licensee lifts Country Liquor/IMF/Beer /Wine/Cider/BIO brands over and above the pending quota due of 2019-20, Excise Licensee will lift the same against the deposition of the prescribed levies as per the Excise Policy 2019-20.
Cabinet gave nod to post facto approval of extension of toll policy 2019-20 upto 31 May 2020 :
The Cabinet also gave its nod to post facto approval of extension of Toll Policy 2019-20 upto 31st May, 2020 and operation of Toll Policy 2020-21 from 1st June, 2020 to 31st May, 2021. The Toll Lessees will be allowed to deposit monthly toll fees for April and May, 2020 on the basis of their actual collection of toll fees.
The Cabinet gave its consent to create and fill up one post of Professor and one post of Assistant Professor in department of Pathology and two posts of Assistant Professors in the department of Psychiatry in IGMC, Shimla on regular basis to facilitate the people.
The Cabinet gave its approval to grant petroleum exploration license under Open Acreage Licensing Policy-Bid Round I in favour of M/s Vedanta Limited for petroleum exploration in Bali Chowki, Chachiot, Sarkaghat and Mandi area of Mandi district and Ghumarwin area of Bilaspur district.
3 Posts to be filled in primary Health center and middle schools to be upgraded:
It decided to create three posts of different categories in Primary Health Centre, Tharola in Kotkhai area of Shimla district to make it functional to facilitate the people of the area.
The Cabinet gave its consent to upgrade Government Middle School, Koon, Seraj in Mandi district and Government Middle School, Anhech in Solan district to Government High Schools and Government High Schools, Jadli and Sanawar to Government Senior Secondary Schools alongwith creation of 20 posts of different categories to manage these schools.
Himachal Cabinet Decisions 8th May 2020
The State Cabinet in its meeting held on 8th May under the Chairmanship of Chief Minister Jai Ram Thakur decided to levy Additional License Fee (Covid Cess) on sale of liquor in the State. Now Rs. 5 per bottle would be charged as Covid Cess on Country Liquor, Rs. 10 per bottle on IMFL, Rs. 5 per bottle/Can on Beer/RTD Indian Made, Rs. 25 per bottle on Foreign Imported Liquor (BIO), Rs. 10 per bottle/Can on Beer/RTD (BIO), Rs. 10 per bottle on Indian Wine/Cider and Rs. 25 per bottle on Wine/Cider (BIO).
Hike in import fee on all kind of spirits used in sanitization products:
The Cabinet also decided to hike import fee on all kinds of spirits used by the industries (L-19A licenses) for manufacturing all kind of sanitisation products from Rs. 10.50 per bulk litres to Rs. 15 per bulk litres.The Cabinet Sub Committee constituted for post COVID-19 Economic revival made a presentation before the Cabinet regarding its recommendations for expediting developmental works, mobilization of resources and possible support to different sectors.
Skill set of people returning to Himachal can be utilized, also measures for horticulture and agriculture suggested :
The Sub Committee also recommended that returning Himachalis may be met for their skill assets and information must be shared with Labour and Employment and Industries Departments for their utilization in available sectors within the State.
It also suggested measures for harvesting of agriculture and horticulture crops in the coming seasons.
The Cabinet Sub Committee also gave its recommendations on plugging revenue losses due to mining operations and for fast-tracking of forest clearances.
Relaxation in curfew for 7 hours now:
Cabinet also gave its nod to increase the curfew relaxation to seven hours from five hours.
Cabinet gave its nod to implement Mukhya Mantri Shahri Ajeevika Guarantee Yojna in the State:
With a view to provide 120 days minimum assured unskilled employment guarantee to every household of the Urban Local Bodies, enhance livelihood security in urban areas and to facilitate skill enhancement of persons engaged in waged labour jobs to set up their own enterprises by imparting skill training, subsidy linked credit and entrepreneurship trainings, the Cabinet gave its consent to implement Mukhya Mantri Shahri Ajeevika Guarantee Yojna in the State. This would help to strengthen urban infrastructure and provisioning of quality civic amenities in Urban Local Bodies. A sum of Rs. 25.20 crore is expected to be spent under this ambitious Yojna.
Centre of Excellence at Waknaghat to boost the employability of youth:
In order to boost the employability of youth of the Pradesh and enhance their employment prospective, the Cabinet gave its nod for setting of Centre of Excellence at Waknaghat in Solan district under ADB funded programme as a specialised centre for high end training in tourism and hospitality sectors as well as IT sector. This will provide the students of Centre of Excellence with international perspectives, strengthen their Curriculum Vitae and improve their employment opportunities.The cabinet also appealed to all State Government employees and employees of State PSUs/Boards/Universities etc. for generous contribution to the HP SDMA COVID-19 State Disaster Response Fund.