CM-led panel of ministers set up to expedite projects
Committee will have local government minister Brahm Mohindra, finance minister Manpreet Singh Badal and welfare of SCs and BCs minister Sadhu Singh Dharamsot as its membersUpdated: Jan 09, 2020 23:02 IST
To check delays and speed up implementation of various projects and schemes in the state, the Punjab cabinet on Thursday decided to establish an empowered committee of ministers.
The decision was taken in the meeting of state council of ministers here.
With chief minister Amarinder Singh as chairman, the committee will have local government minister Brahm Mohindra, finance minister Manpreet Singh Badal and welfare of SCs and BCs minister Sadhu Singh Dharamsot as its members and the minister in-charge of department concerned as its co-opted member.
The meetings of the empowered committee would be attended by the chief secretary and administrative secretaries of the departments concerned, besides chief principal secretary to CM, principal secretary to CM and principal secretary, finance, according to an official release.
The committee will meet every week, at least for the first six months, and the department concerned would put its agenda of schemes and projects to the chief minister through the minister in-charge, for further placing it before the empowered committee for consideration. The agenda of the empowered committee would be circulated to all departments concerned in advance, and they would be provided an opportunity to present their views in the meeting of the committee before a final decision is taken.
Once a decision has been taken by the empowered committee, the administrative department will not be required to send any reference or proposal to any other department, including the departments of finance and personnel, for any further approvals. It shall be incumbent upon the administrative departments concerned to ensure compliance of all decisions of the empowered committee.
The administrative department would be required to give specific timelines for completion of projects and schemes or assigned tasks, and it would submit its progress report thereon to the empowered committee. The very first item on the agenda of each meeting of the empowered committee would be to review the progress of decisions taken by it in the previous meetings, and discuss bottlenecks, if any. All decisions to be taken by the empowered committee shall be placed before the council of ministers, for their information, from time to time.
ORDINANCE FOR WATER RESOURCES MANAGEMENT OKAYED
The cabinet also approved enactment of the Punjab Water Resources (Management and Regulation) Ordinance, 2019, to pave the way for setting up a Water Regulation and Development Authority (WRDA) to manage and regulate the water resources efficaciously. The ordinance, which was approved by the council of ministers earlier at its meeting on December 4, 2019, is now all set for legislation as ‘The Punjab Water Resources (Management and Regulation) Bill, 2020’. It proposes to set up the WRDA, consisting of a chairman and two other members to be appointed by the government, for management and conversion of water resources of the state in a judicious, equitable and sustainable manner.
The authority will be empowered to issue directions and guidelines for the conservation and management of the water resources, besides issuing tariff orders specifying the charges to be imposed by entities supplying water for drinking domestic, commercial or industrial use. An advisory committee on water resources comprising experts and ex-officio members from various government departments has also been proposed to advise the authority. The move is prompted by the fact that due to over-exploitation of ground water for agriculture and other requirements, the ground water table is declining very rapidly. Moreover, due to pollution caused by industrialisation and urbanisation, there is significant deterioration in the quality of water.
TOURISM AND CULTURE POLICIES AMENDED
To make tourism more disabled-friendly, the cabinet approved the amendments to the Punjab State Culture Policy, 2017, and Punjab State Tourism Policy, 2018, in compliance with Rights of Persons With Disabilities (RPWD) Act, 2016. An official spokesperson said that in line with RPWD Act, passed by the Government of India for protection of rights of disabled persons, all departments of the state government are required to adopt and incorporate its provisions. As such, the cabinet has approved inclusion of certain provisions of Section 29 of RPWD Act in Punjab State Culture Policy, 2017, and Punjab State Tourism Policy, 2018.
The cabinet has given its nod to the addition of Para 10.8, envisaging special provisions for persons with disabilities in the Punjab State Cultural Policy, 2017. These relate to facilities, support and sponsorship to artists and writers with disability to pursue their interests and talents; making art accessible to persons with disabilities; facilitating participation in dancing and art and redesigning courses in cultural and arts subjects to enable participation and access for persons with disabilities. Similarly, special provisions for persons with disabilities have also been incorporated in Punjab State Tourism Policy, 2018, which stipulates facilities and support to persons with disability to visit places of tourist interest in Punjab; making art accessible to persons with disabilities and promoting recreational centres and other associational activities.
CLASS-4 STAFF GETS QUOTA
IN DIRECT APPOINTMENT
The council of ministers also gave approval to amend Punjab Health & Family Welfare Technical (Group-C) Service Rules, 2016 for providing 1% promotional quota in direct appointment of multipurpose health worker (male). Only those class-4 employees will be eligible who have completed diploma in multipurpose health worker.