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July 4, 2001 - July 4, 2001

State draws up scheme for quake-hit farmers Wednesday, July 4, 2001

The Times of India News Service
GANDHINAGAR: The Gujarat government announced here on Friday a three-pronged scheme of Rs 434.65 crore to rehabilitate the farmers affected by the quake.

The scheme, which includes a rehabilitation package of Rs 181.25 crore, a package to rebuild the destroyed farm infrastructure facilities of Rs 117.5 crore, and a package to provide agricultural equipment of Rs 135.9 crore, however, does not say what Kutch district's share would be.

Announcing the scheme after the Cabinet approval, agriculture minister Becharbhai Bhadani admitted, "We have no separate data for Kutch. The scheme is meant for entire Gujarat. Survey is still on. We would know the share of Kutch some time later."

The scheme does not include the animal husbandry package, crucial for Kutch's rural population. Most of the agriculturists of the district are heavily dependent on cattle breeding as a major source of income even while having a farmland in the arid area.

The "Memorandum on the Quake Damage in Gujarat" submitted to the Centre last month by Chief Minister Keshubhai Patel had underlined that "animal husbandry is an important economic activity in the affected areas", suggesting "it is necessary to sustain the animal husbandry infrastructure and ensure that the health of the animal population does not deteriorate."

About 18,600 cattle head have perished in the quake. The memorandum had worked out a Rs 40-crore scheme for milk production enhancement of dairy animals and a Rs 5.3-crore scheme for sheep and goats production enhancement.

Estimating that in all 1,45,000 farmers have suffered in the quake, the scheme approved on Friday announced giving Rs 10,000 to the small and marginal farmers and Rs 15,000 to other farmers. To rebuild the farm facilities destroyed in the quake, those that have suffered complete destruction would be given Rs 10,000 each, while others Rs 2,500. The farmers whose oil engines and electric motors have been totally destroyed would be given Rs 18,000 and while Rs 21,000 would be given against totally destroyed tube-wells, wells and pipelines. Others would be given one third the amount.

This apart, the small and marginal farmers would be given 60 per cent of up to Rs 1 lakh loan as help for rebuilding their farm. Other farmers would be given a 50 per cent subsidy. The loan would be provided by the Gujarat State Water Resources Corporation.

News Source : Times Of India News Service [ Lightning News ]


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State draws up scheme for quake-hit farmers Wednesday, July 4, 2001

The Times of India News Service
GANDHINAGAR: The Gujarat government announced here on Friday a three-pronged scheme of Rs 434.65 crore to rehabilitate the farmers affected by the quake.

The scheme, which includes a rehabilitation package of Rs 181.25 crore, a package to rebuild the destroyed farm infrastructure facilities of Rs 117.5 crore, and a package to provide agricultural equipment of Rs 135.9 crore, however, does not say what Kutch district's share would be.

Announcing the scheme after the Cabinet approval, agriculture minister Becharbhai Bhadani admitted, "We have no separate data for Kutch. The scheme is meant for entire Gujarat. Survey is still on. We would know the share of Kutch some time later."

The scheme does not include the animal husbandry package, crucial for Kutch's rural population. Most of the agriculturists of the district are heavily dependent on cattle breeding as a major source of income even while having a farmland in the arid area.

The "Memorandum on the Quake Damage in Gujarat" submitted to the Centre last month by Chief Minister Keshubhai Patel had underlined that "animal husbandry is an important economic activity in the affected areas", suggesting "it is necessary to sustain the animal husbandry infrastructure and ensure that the health of the animal population does not deteriorate."

About 18,600 cattle head have perished in the quake. The memorandum had worked out a Rs 40-crore scheme for milk production enhancement of dairy animals and a Rs 5.3-crore scheme for sheep and goats production enhancement.

Estimating that in all 1,45,000 farmers have suffered in the quake, the scheme approved on Friday announced giving Rs 10,000 to the small and marginal farmers and Rs 15,000 to other farmers. To rebuild the farm facilities destroyed in the quake, those that have suffered complete destruction would be given Rs 10,000 each, while others Rs 2,500. The farmers whose oil engines and electric motors have been totally destroyed would be given Rs 18,000 and while Rs 21,000 would be given against totally destroyed tube-wells, wells and pipelines. Others would be given one third the amount.

This apart, the small and marginal farmers would be given 60 per cent of up to Rs 1 lakh loan as help for rebuilding their farm. Other farmers would be given a 50 per cent subsidy. The loan would be provided by the Gujarat State Water Resources Corporation.

News Source : Times Of India News Service [ Lightning News ]


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Govt rejects oil millers' plea Wednesday, July 4, 2001

The Times of India News Service
GANDHINAGAR: The Gujarat government has rejected the powerful oil millers' demand that only producers be allowed to package edible oil products currently being sold in the market.

Speaking with newspersons, minister of state for fisheries Babubhai Bokhariya, who currently holds temporary charge of the civil supplies department in the absence of an independent minister, said here on Monday that if the state bowed to the demand, that would mean putting all packaging firms out of business.

Representatives from the Saurashtra Oil Millers' Association and Gujarat Oil Refiners' Association had represented to the state government recently that only oil producers be allowed the packaging rights. Terming this as a "clear change in their earlier stance when they opposed packaging all together", Bokhariya, who belongs to Porbander, said, "The millers' plea was based on the view that only when producers package their products is it possible to fix the responsibility for adulteration."

The meeting with SOMA and GORA, with the participation of the Gujarat Packagers' Association, was recently held by Bhokhariya to find out whether it was possible to come up with a notification to put into effect a Central law making packaging of all oil products compulsory. "So far, the millers had opposed, hence the law, enacted by the Union government in July 1998, could not be implemented", said the minister, who was given the crucial civil supplies portfolio after Ashok Bhatt resigned from Cabinet last year.

Bokhariya, who is widely believed to be a strong candidate for the home department in the event of a future Cabinet reshuffle, said, "Packaging automatically leads to a higher price for the oil products, with a rise up to at least 10 per cent. Hence, before putting out a notification on making packaging compulsory, it is necessary to talk over also with the consumer forum. The meeting would be held on July 15. Thereafter, the matter would be sent to the legal department to work out rules on packaging."

Meanwhile, GORA has represented to Chief Minister Keshubhai Patel that distributors should in no circumstances be allowed to package the edible oil products. In a letter to the CM, GORA chief Bharat R Patel said the packaging by 550 different trading houses had put out a large number of spurious brand names on the market selling adulterated edible oil on a price much lower than the standard product being supplied by the millers.

"It's an open loot", GORA said. "All those who package their products should be asked get a licence of producers, too. This would end the current loot."

News Source : Times Of India News Service [ Lightning News ]


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Lift water cut, BJP tells Rajkot mayor Wednesday, July 4, 2001

The Times of India News Service
RAJKOT: The opposition BJP in the Rajkot municipal corporation on Saturday demanded that the water cut be lifted as enough water was being supplied through the Narmada pipeline.

But mayor Ashok Dangar contended that the daily supply was less than the quota and the city faced a crisis and there was no question of lifting the cut.

Former standing committee chairman Dhansukh Bhanderi and opposition leader Lalubhai Parekh said the city has been getting on an average 43 lakh gallons of water through the pipeline. So the additional days cut must be lifted. The BJP has submitted a memorandum to the mayor.

The BJP leaders said the mayor had announced that if the city got 40 lakh gallons he could withdraw the cut and now it was time for him to do so. BJP members said that the Congress had failed to supply water to the people. This proved that they were weak administrators.

Dangar said that the city was not getting the promised 40 lakh gallons as claimed by the BJP but just 36 lakh gallons. Besides arrangement must be made in case the rains were delayed.

The BJP was taking the people for a ride by making false claims. Out of 28 days in June the city had received 40 lakh gallons on 11 days and on nine days the supply was less than 30 lakh gallons. On the remaining days it was around 30 lakh gallons.

Total dependence on Narmada could be suicidal, he said, and added even the Aji-3 dam had dried up and there was shortage of water.

News Source : Times Of India News Service [ Lightning News ]


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GONDAL::::Temple looted at Gondal Wednesday, July 4, 2001

The Times of India News Service
RAJKOT: A gang of robbers looted the Ashapura Mata temple at Gondal and took away temple jewellery worth Rs. 9,700 on Friday. They injured the temple guard.

According to the police, three men entered the temple at 1.45 a.m. after attacking the 65-year-old guard Narsinhbhai Patel.

They tied a handkerchief on his mouth and asked for keys of the sanctum sanctorum. When the guard said he did not have the keys, he was dragged to the steps and his head dashed on the steps.

He was injured in the head. One of them caught hold of the guard, and the two others broke into the deity room and took away the jewellery and fled towards the Ashapura dam site.

The temple priest sleeping in an adjacent room was spared as the target was the jewellery.

The guard told the police that the miscreants had covered their face with towels. So he could not identify them.

News Source : Times Of India News Service [ Lightning News ]


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