Saturday, September 08, 2007

Union Cabinet clears unorganised sector Bill

The Union Cabinet today approved the revised Unorganised Sector Workers Social Security Bill, 2007.

The Bill, which will be introduced in the current session of Parliament, will facilitate formulation of social security schemes for the unorganised sector workers.

The Cabinet also approved a health insurance scheme for below-poverty-line workers and their families in the unorganised sector. The scheme will be launched in a phased manner starting from October 2, 2007. States have to formulate projects under this scheme.

“The beneficiaries will be issued smart cards for the purpose of identification,” Information and Broadcasting minister Priyaranjan Dasmunshi said.

The Cabinet also cleared establishment of the National Institute of Science Education and Research (NISER) in Bhubaneswar at an estimated cost of Rs 823 crore. The NISER will function as an autonomous body under the Department of Atomic Energy and will be the first of its kind under the DAE umbrella for undergraduate education in basic sciences.

The Cabinet also approved outsourcing of front-end activities of passport issuance, through an open bidding process, to one or more service providers. It will also set up 68 passport facilitation centres and use the current passport offices as passport back-offices.

The Cabinet Committee on Economic Affairs (CCEA), which also met today, gave its approval for continuation of the Rural Employment Generation Programme (REGP) till the end of the current financial year. It granted Rs 445 crore towards the REGP for the current financial year.

The CCEA also approved continuation of centrally sponsored scheme of Post-Matric Scholarship to students belonging to Scheduled Castes, with an estimated expenditure of Rs 5000 crore during the 11th Plan. Now the scheme has been extended to the free seats of private institutions also. September 07, 2007

Business Standard

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