- Changes to the SEZ land acquisition policy
- The group of ministers (GoM) set up to frame a relief and rehabilitation (R&R) policy for those displaced by the industrial projects including SEZs (Special Economic Zones) has decided to give state governments the power to acquire 30% of the land required in case the developer has acquired the rest of 70%.
- When there was lot of agitation against the state acquisition of land for helping the SEZs being set up, the government announced that land would not be acquired by state governments. Further that no agricultural land would ever be allowed to be acquired.
- The GoM is headed by Agriculture minister Mr. Sharad Pawar.
- The Indo-US nuclear deal and our scientists view
- While the Left is going hammer and tongs against the deal, the country’s scientific establishment has come out strongly in favour of the deal. Take a look this statement given out by them while strongly supporting the nuclear agreement:
- Our weapons programme will continue as it always has been, with our own reactors, reprocessing plants, enrichment plants and heavy water plants. We are not going to be giving the design and technology to any one; why, then are we pointing out that the
will not give these technologies as part of the civilian agreement? US
- For me, this is enough reason to be convinced that it is nothing but pure political stances that are playing the spoil sport. Even the BJP’s efforts at nuancing between ‘strategic partnership with the
’ and ‘strategic subservience to them’ are nothing but a fine play of words being indulged in by them. The deal is a good one that can be secured at this stage. Let us hope that the whole country stands behind it and that progress is allowed to be made. US
- Intellectual property sharing policy in the offing
- Presently, the government provides assistance in the form of non-repayable grants in aid and soft loans for specific research projects undertaken by the industry, universities and other public and private entities. But the institutions lacked the mandate to commercialize their research results. As innovations belonged to the funding agency, there is no incentive for the innovators.
- But now, the government is coming out with a legal framework which allows sharing of the intellectual property generated by these efforts.
- How many rural landless households are there in the country?
- According to the NSSO, it is about 1.5 crores.
- Iron ore exports and their pricing
Indiaalong with Braziland , is one of the largest exporters of iron ore globally. Australia
- Last year the country exported over 90 mn tonnes iron ore; mostly to
- The government has levied a Rs. 300 per tonne export duty on iron ore in March 2007. Later on, the duty was restructured to a dual form – duty of Rs. 50 per tonne on ore fines with iron content of up to 62% and Rs. 300 per tonne for fines with higher iron content.
- In spite of this levy,
India’s ore is still cheaper because, the transportation costs from Braziland Australiawill be higher than those from . Hence, in spite of all the talk of our losing the market share, such a thing did not happen. India
- About priority sector lending by banks
- Private and pubic sector banks are mandated to lend 40% of their total loans to the priority sector. Priority sector includes – agriculture, small enterprises, retail trade, micro credit, education and housing loans.
- Foreign banks have to lend 32% of their total loans to priority sector. For them, this also includes exports.
- There are a number of sub targets within these overall targets. For instance our PSBs (Public Sector Banks) have to lend at least 5% of their net bank credit to women. About 15% of their total priority sector lending should be directed to minorities – i.e., Muslims.
- We have been blogging away for quite some time now. It is in the fitness of things to know a little about it.
- Jorn Barger is credited as the “first blogger” in the world. He started his blog in 1997. It is called robot wisdom.
- Peter Merholz is credited with inventing the word ‘blog’. He shortened the weblog as ’blog. But sometime down the line the apostrophe vanished. That’s how the word ‘blog’ found its way into our vocabulary.
- Week end is nearing and it is time for us to take a look at fun. Look at these news bloopers in our Time Pass blog. Very hilarious.