Mumbai: The Maharashtra state cabinet under the chairmanship of Chief Minister Eknath Shinde on Tuesday accepted the first report of the Justice Shinde committee and began with the process of issuing Kunbi caste certificates to Marathas. The cabinet also declared drought in 40 talukas and changed the criteria for relief and rehabilitation in case of natural calamities. The cabinet also decided to amend legislation to expedite action in chit fund cases pending in courts.
The decision to declare drought was taken at the state cabinet meeting based on the information provided by the Relief and Rehabilitation Department on the situation regarding the crop water situation.
“Due to scanty rainfall, drought has been declared in 40 talukas during the Kharif season by the state cabinet today. Accordingly, necessary assistance will be urgently requested from the Centre in view of the drought situation,” a statement said.
The Drought Management Code of 2016 was taken into consideration, which included mandatory indicators and impact indicators.
Quick decision on appropriate relief measures
“Chief Minister Eknath Shinde and Deputy Chief Minister Devendra Fadnavis have also instructed the Relief and Rehabilitation Department’s sub-committee to quickly decide on the appropriate relief for the affected talukas,” the statement said.
Maharashtra received 13.4 percent less rainfall this year, and the Rabi sowing is also delayed. So far, only 12 percent of the sowing has been done, it said.
The government has also decided to provide assistance up to three hectares (of land) instead of two hectares to the victims of natural disasters as per the State Disaster Response Fund (SDRF) norms.
Events like extreme rainfall and natural disasters caused agricultural losses from June to October this year.
As per SDRF norms, instead of a two-hectare limit, aid will now be given up to three hectares. The assistance which was restricted to farmers with small landholdings will now be available up to the three-hectare limit to those who are not small landholding farmers.
Methodology to issue Kunbi caste
The state cabinet also accepted the first report of the Justice (rtd) Sandeep Shinde committee set up to devise methodology to issue Kunbi caste certificates to Marathas. As per the report, the cabinet also decided to start issuing Kunbi caste certificates to Martahas in Marathwada region who had previous records of Kunbi caste.
Apart from changes in the legislation to expedite resolution of court cases related to Chit Funds, the state cabinet also decided to set up a ITI for SC students at Chembur. The decision was taken as the state had very few ITIs fro SC communities in Mumbai region.