Himachal cabinet gives nod to 6% subsidy on apple cartons
With the Sanyukt Kisan Manch firm on gheraoing the Himachal Pradesh Secretariat on August 5 unless their demands presented in a 20-point charter are fulfilled, the Himachal Pradesh cabinet gave ex post facto approval for 6% subsidy on cartons used for packaging fruit in the hill state.
The Cabinet said formal approval had been granted for reimbursement of 6% subsidy on purchase of packaging material, cartons and trays, regardless of whether they were purchased from Himachal Pradesh Marketing Corporation (HPMC) or the open market with effect from April 1. To avail the subsidy, farmers will need to produce the Goods and Service Tax (GST) bill on cartons and trays, sale proof and Aaadhar-linked bank account details.
Unpacified growers dismissed the move as an eyewash. “This is just an attempt to pacify farmers. All decisions are being taken in haste and under pressure,” said Sanjay Chauhan co-convener of the Sanyukt Kisan Manch. Manch is demanding the government ease out formalities for the farmers to avail subsidies on cartons. The umbrella body of 24 farmer unions have now demanded that the ease the formalities required to avail the subsidy.
Unfulfilled demands from the charter submitted to the government includes fixing the minimum support price on the lines of Kashmir where price is fixed as per the quality of the fruit.
The state Cabinet also gave its nod to fill up 320 posts of different categories under the National Health Mission on a contract basis, enhance the commission being paid to fair-price shop holders on the sale of sugar from ₹7.57 to ₹50 per quintal and on from 3-4% of the sale rate on the items specially subsidised by the state.
It also ordered a slew of upgrades in medical facilities – the community health centre Hatwar in Ghumarwin tehsil of Bilaspur district will become a10-bedded health institution, the primary health centre (Malokhar) will be made a community health centre along with creation and filling up of three posts of different categories, the primary health centre in Bhakra, Bilaspur, will be upgraded to a community health centre along with the creation and filling up of four posts. Six posts were sanctioned for the primary health centres at Geharwin and Kalol in Bilaspur district that have been upgraded to community health centre. A similar announcement was made for the primary health centre at Spilow in Kinnaur district
The ministers agreed to open a Primary Health Centre at Pangi in Kinnaur, and Shikawari in Thunag tehsil of Mandi. Three posts each will be created and filled at both centres.
A new Ayurvedic Health Centre will also come up at Thahravi in Anni tehsil of Kullu district.
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