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COVID-19 impact: Assam cabinet revises academic year to April-March

In a significant decision, the Assam Cabinet on June 29th, 2020 decided to revise the academic year of schools from January-December to April-March. The decision was taken due to the disruptions due to the COVID-19 outbreak.

The educational institutions have remained close since March 15th, 2020 due to the outbreak of lethal virus that has infected 7835 people so far; of which 2488 are active and 5333 have been cured and discharged and 11 died due to the infection.

“Due to Covid -19 pandemic educational Institutions are closed from 15th March. In order to compensate the loss of academic days, after due consultation with stake holders, Cabinet has decided to revise the Academic session of schools from 1st April to 31st March (sic),” Assam Education Minister Himanta Biswa Sarma tweeted.

Also read: Assam: Guwahati records 172 COVID-19 cases in last 24 hours

Meanwhile, in a major decision to boost Aatma Nirbhar Assam, the CoM passed the MSME Ordinance which puts an end to the process of taking multiple permissions for setting up MSMEs in the state for next 3 years.

The cabinet, while paving the way for new investments, employment, and trade, allocated 200 bigha of Ashok Paper Mill at Jogighopa for India’s first International Multi-Modal Logistic Hub. It approved a loan of Rs 338.28 crore from NABARD for development works in various sectors.

Some other important decisions:

  • In view of the COVID19 pandemic, the CoM has passed an ordinance for extension of dates of GST return.
  • The CoM has also approved 15th Finance Commission Grant in the following ratio: 70% for Gaon Panchayat, 15% for Anchalik Panchayat and 15% for Zila Parishads
  • A decision was taken for a reduction in Earnest Money Deposits (EMDs) for mines auction to 0.5% for the general category and 0.25% for SCs/STs.   
  • The CoM has also decided that from now onwards, employees of Assam Bhawans will be transferable.
  • The CoM also amended the Assam College Employees Provincialisation Act 2005 to enable retired employees to receive a pension in return for their CPF.
  • The CoM has amended the Bengal-Agra-Assam Civil Court Act 1887 by which the financial limit of cases has been increased in lower courts from Rs 50,000 to Rs 10 lakh.

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