Parliament met for the 11th sitting of the Budget Session today.
Lok Sabha undertook a discussion on the Demands for Grants of the
Ministry of Water Resources today. Further analysis on the demands are
available at the end of the diary. 

Rajya Sabha held a discussion on the unprecedented spurt in violence in
Gaza and West Bank area of Palestine causing death of scores of
civilians. The Upper House then undertook a General Discussion on the
Railways Budget, which was underway at the time of sending this diary.
As of today, two Ordinances promulgated in March 2014 have lapsed. These are The Securities Laws (Amendment) Ordinance, 2014 and The SC and ST (Prevention of Atrocities) Amendment Ordinance, 2014.
As per Article 123 of the Constitution, Ordinances cease to operate six
weeks from the reassembly of Parliament.  As these Ordinances had been
promulgated before the Introductory Session of Parliament, they lapse
six weeks from the President’s Address.
Participation of First Time MPs: In the first two weeks
of Parliament, 336 MPs participated in debates and discussion in Lok
Sabha. Out of these, 202 were first-time Lok Sabha MPs who made their
maiden speeches.

Analysis on Demands for Grants of Ministry of Water Resources (2014-15)

  • The Ministry is proposed to be allotted Rs 13,837 crore, an
    increase of Rs 12,596 crore from the revised estimate (2013-14).  This
    large increase is largely due to a large increase in the provision
    titled ‘Major and Medium Irrigation’.
  • The provision titled ‘Major and Medium Irrigation’ is composed of
    several projects.  One of the components of this provision is the
    Accelerated Irrigation Benefit and Flood Management Programme (AIBP). 
    The large increase in the amount allotted for ‘Major and Medium
    Irrigation’ from the revised estimate (2013-14) is partly due to the
    shifting of the AIBP from the Ministry of Finance to the Ministry of
    Water Resources. 
  • Within projects under ‘Major and Medium Irrigation’, the outlay for
    the AIBP has decreased by Rs 1,758 crore from the interim budget
    (2014-15).  A new scheme called Pradhan Mantri Krishi Sinchayee Yojana
    has been introduced with an outlay of Rs 1,000 crore, under ‘Major and
    Medium Irrigation’ to improve access to irrigation.
  • The National River Conservation Plan has been shifted from the
    Ministry of Environment and Forests (MoEF) to the Ministry of Water
    Resources, with an outlay of Rs 537 for the current year.  Last year,
    the MoEF allocated Rs 518 crore for the National River Conservation Plan
    at the budget estimates stage, which was later revised to Rs 446 crore.

Major new initiatives announced in the Union Budget (2014-15) related to water resources

  • Pradhan Mantri Krishi Sinchayee Yojana: Rs 1000 crore has been allocated to this scheme, to improve access to irrigation.
  • Linking of rivers: Rs 100 crore has been set aside to prepare Detailed Project Reports to assist with the linking of rivers.
  • Water projects for the National Capital Territory:  Rs 500 has been allocated for this purpose.
  • Integrated Ganga Conservation Mission: Rs. 2,037 has been allocated for this Mission for the conservation and improvement of the river Ganga.
  • Development of Ghats: Rs 100 crore has been
    allocated for ghat development and the beautification of the river
    fronts at Kedarnath, Haridwar, Kanpur, Varanasi, Allahabad, Patna, and
    Delhi in 2014-15.
  • NRI Ganga Fund: This fund will be set up to finance special projects.  Non Resident Indians will contribute to this fund.  
  • Pollavaram Project Authority: Rs 250 crore has been allocated for the Pollavaram Project Authority.

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