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Himachal emerging as India’s Natural Glass House, producing 16.54 lakh metric ton vegetables in 77000 hectares

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HP Off Season Vegetable production

Currently, the vegetable growers are fetching a net return of Rs. 60,000 to Rs. 100,000 per hectare from off-season vegetables

Shimla: Himachal Pradesh Government claims the diversification of crops has transformed the rural economy and economic growth of the state as the farming community is adopting new cropping pattern that has boosted the off-season vegetables in the state.

Himachal has already earned a name “the fruit bowl of the country” and now, the state is fast emerging as a ‘Natural Glass House’ of the country in the production of vegetables.

The agriculture sector provides direct employment to about 62 percent of the main working force and makes about 10 percent of the total state domestic product in the state.

The vegetable crops are grown in Himachal ranging from the Shiwalik foot hills to High Alpine Zone up to 4000 meters above sea level.

The area under vegetable crops has increased to 77000 hectares with a production of about 16.54 lakh metric ton as compared to only 5.80 lakh metric ton during 2000-01, said the government.

Returns of off-season vegetable cultivation are higher as compared to traditional cereal crops. The farming community shifted its focus from just cereal crops and are growing off-season vegetables like tomato, capsicum, green peas, beans, cabbage, cauliflower, and cucumber.

As per the official report, the traditional crops only provide a net return of Rs. 8000 to Rs. 10,000 per hectare to farmers. However, currently, the vegetable growers are fetching h net return of Rs. 60,000 to Rs. 100,000 per hectare from off-season vegetables.

The report further said 3050 poly houses covering an area of 5.50 lakh square meter have been set up under ‘Dr. Y.S. Parmar Kisan Swarojgar Yojana’.

About 40 thousand farmers have come forward for adopting organic farming in the state.

A Rs. 321 crore ‘Crop Diversification Promotion Project ‘ has provided irrigation facility for additional 935 hectares. About 1300 hectare command area has also been brought under irrigation under ‘Rajiv Gandhi Micro-Irrigation Scheme’.

The government attributed this growth to the initiatives of the Agriculture Department.

The farmers are provided subsidized materials and high yielding hybrids of vegetables. The micro irrigation system and organic farming were promoted, it said.

The government said it is making efforts to bring more area under irrigation facility as mostly the farmers are dependent on rain harvesting, said the government.

A ‘Centre of Excellence’ for vegetable nursery production has also been established at Jubberhati in Shimla district and two more such centers are being set–up at Solan and Mandi districts.

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Misc News/Press Release

HP Govt’s another major administrative re-shuffle: 91 HPAS,11 IAS officers transferred

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List of HP Administrative transferes

Shimla: The newly formed government of Bhartiya Janata Party in Himachal Pradesh, which had re-shuffled 34 officials a few weeks ago, has carried out a major re-shuffle of 102 officials.

This time, with an immediate effect, 91 officials of the HP Administrative Services (HPAS) are also re-shuffled. Some of the Sub-Divisional Officers (SDOs) were promoted.

Complete List of HPAS, IAS Transfers

Kadam Sandeep Vasant  Commissioner, Dharamsala Municipal Corporation with an additional charge of Managing Director-cum-Chief Executive officer of Dharamsala Smart City Project.
Hans Raj Chauhan a Given additional charge of director, Women and Child Development department along with director, Public Finance and Public Enterprise-cum-Special Secretary (Finance) 
Debasweta Banik Promoted to Additional Deputy Commissioner, ADC (Development) at Shimla
Raghav Sharma Promoted from  SDO to ADC (Development), Mandi while Kritika Kumari SDO (Civil), as ADC (Development), Chamba.
Hemraj Balwara  Promoted from SDO (Civil), Manali to DC-com-Project officer DRDA, Una, 
Aditya Negi Promoted from Additional Controller of Stores, Industries department to  ADC (Development) at Nahan

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Other Recent Appointments 

Other than this, yesterday on January 16, the Government appointed Dr. Rachna Gupta as the member of Himachal Pradesh Public Service Commission.

Dr. Daisy Thakur was appointed as Chairperson of the Himachal Pradesh State Commission for Women (HPSCW) for a term of three years.

The Government also nominated non-official members of the commission. Indu Bala, Sushma Bhatt and  Manjri Negi were nominated as non-official members.

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After BJP MLA booked for forgery, now sitting MP charge-sheeted in corruption case

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BJP Virender kashyap sting operation

Earlier on January 4, 2018, sitting MLA of BJP, Jeet Ram Katwal, was booked for alleged forgery

Shimla: Another state leader of Bhartiya Janata Party in Himachal Pradesh is in trouble in relation to the alleged case of bribery that dates back to 2009.

Earlier on January 4, 2018, sitting MLA of BJP, Jeet Ram Katwal, was booked for alleged forgery in providing information sought under the Right to Information (RTI) Act. The Chotta Shimla police station has registered a case of forgery on January 4, 2018, under Section 465, 466 and 469 of the Indian Penal Code (IPC)on the complaint of Pratap Singh Verma.

As another jolt to the BJP, which had made the corruption charges against then Chief Minister Virbhadra Singh a major issue before the recent assembly elections.

The sitting Member of Parliament from Shimla and BJP leader, Virender Kashyap, has been charge-sheeted in a case relating to a sting operation conducted by a TV channel on April 20, 2009 assembly polls. The sting had created a huge political controversy back then.  

The BJP came to power in the State right after the sting broke out and Kashyap also won the elections on a BJP ticket. The case was allegedly hushed up by the district police, Solan, due to political pressure.

However, owing to the petition filed in the High Court by an RTI activist, Dev Ashish Bhattacharya, the case was re-opened in 2013.

Let us remind you that in the newly elected Legislative Assembly of Himachal Pradesh include 22 MLAs who are facing criminal cases. As per a report of the Association for Democratic Reforms (ADR), two of the 21 Congress MLAs and 18 of the 44 BJP MLAs and 1 CPM MLA and one of the two independent MLAs have declared criminal cases against them in their affidavits.

About Virender Kashyap Sting Operation

As per the reported contents of the CD of the said sting operation conducted by a TV channel, Kashyap was seen allegedly accepting a packet of money in exchange of some favour.

As per the audio, it was an alleged bribe from a private party about setting up of an educational institution. However, Kashyap was not holding any official position at that time.

After the sting created a huge political drama, Kashyap claimed that he had found the money in the hotel saying someone might have forgotten it there. A BJP party-worker even handed over the money to the local police next day.

The matter was allegedly hushed up initially, but ruling BJP government had to order an inquiry in 2010 under pressure. The Solan police formed a special team in February and filed a probe report on March 2

The police findings claimed no offence was committed by Kashyap. As expected, the BJP leader was given a clean-chit.

Later in 2013, Dev Ashish Bhattacharya, an RTI activist, challenged the finding of the inquiry conducted by the government in the court. The division bench comprising Justice D.D. Sood and Justice Kuldeep Singh had quashed the investigation report of the police.

In the same year, the court had also served a notice to Kashyap to file a reply within four weeks.

The activist had alleged that the police gave the BJP leader a clean chit without forensic testing like matching the audio with the voice-sample of Kashyap. He alleged the district police did not conduct a fair probe due to high political pressure.  

On gaining back the power in 2012 assembly polls, the Congress government also ordered a probe by the Vigilance Department.

The Vigilance sent the said CD for forensic testing. After receiving positive results, the Vigilance and Anti-Corruption Bureau filed an FIR under Section 9 of the Prevention of Corruption Act 1988.

Now, the District and Session Court, Solan, has finally framed the charges against the sitting MP.       

The MP, however, is still refuting the charges and calling it a conspiracy.

The State Congress party, which faced a humiliating defeat in the 13th assembly polls in 2017, has found it as an opportunity to poke the BJP government over the corruption charges on the sitting MP and FIR against a sitting MLA.

The Congress is questioning the silence of the BJP over the said case.

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Misc News/Press Release

SJVN donates Rs. 1,00,00,000 towards CM relief fund  

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SJVN donation towards HP CM relief Fund

Shimla:  (SJVN) donated a cheque of rupees one crore towards Himachal Pradesh Chief Minister’s Relief Fund (Sutlej Jal Vidyut NigamCMRF).

The SJVN Chairman-cum-Chief Managing Director, Nand Lal Sharma, on January 6, 2018, presented the cheque to the Chief Minister Jai Ram Thakur, who expressed gratitude towards SJVN terming it a noble gesture.

The funds would go a long way to help the poor to meet the medical expenses, he assured. In 2016, SJVN had donated Rs. 50 lakh towards the CMRF. 

The Chief Minister has urged all the boards and corporations to voluntarily come ahead and contribute towards CM Relief Fund.

Earlier, the Cabinet Ministers had also donated Rs. 1 lakh each towards the CMRF.

The new government has been blaming the previous Congress government for emptying the state treasury in wake of assembly elections. 

SJVNL Revenue and Profit for 2016-17

Against the MoU target of generation of 8700 million units, SJVN has generated 9045 million units of electricity for the financial year 2016-17, the CMD told the Chief Minister.

SJVN has generated more than 8660 million units during current financial year till date, he added. The CMD said the financial position of SJVN is healthy.

 The revenue from operation was Rs. 2468.66 crore and net-profit after paying the tax was Rs. 1544.14 crore in fiscal 2016-17, said the CMD.

The SJVN has paid a dividend of Rs.290.13 Crores to Government for the financial year 2016-17. The State government holds a share of 25.51% in the SJVN.

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