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18 states join Electronic Agricultural Trading Portal eNAM (National Agriculture Market) : Government

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New Delhi, April 12, 2017: Eighteen states have joined the eNAM (National Agriculture Market) and 13 of them have made necessary amendments to rules under their respective APMC Acts within a year of its launch, the government said on Wednesday.

The eNAM is a pan-India electronic trading portal, which networks APMC (agricultural produce market committee) markets to create a unified national market for agricultural commodities, which was launched in April last year.

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NITI (National Institution for Transforming India) Aayog member Ramesh Chand on Wednesday held a review meeting here on Agriculture Market Reforms, which was attended by officials of agriculture marketing, forest and revenue departments of state governments.

“It was a review meeting to see the progress of the reforms we have undertaken and discuss the future road map. These include setting up of private markets, allowing direct marketing, contract farming, deregulation of fruit and vegetables from the provisions of the APMC Act, and eNAM,” Agriculture Ministry Additional Secretary Ashok Dalwai told the media here.

He said the state governments have shown positive interest in ushering in agricultural reforms, aimed at transparency, effectiveness and competition in agricultural trade sector and to double farmers’ incomes.

Under the private marketing reform, private players can set up their own ‘mandi’ (market) while under direct marketing farmers can sell their produce to bulk purchasers, exporters or retail customers directly by bypassing APMC markets.

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Since the eNAM was launched in April last year, at least 417 APMC markets have joined the platform with a trade of 5.9 million tonnes of 69 types of commodities.

“In just one year, quantum of business has touched Rs 15,000 crore. The value and volume of commodities is increasing day by day,” Dalwai said.

According to the ministry, 3.95 million farmers, over 88,000 traders and over 44,000 commission agent have joined the platform.

The government’s target is for a unified agriculture market for interstate trade. However, the government’s immediate plan is to form unified market at the state level first.

Dalwai said a committee was working on the requirements to integrate India’s markets.

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He said the Centre was ready with a draft model APMC law, which will act as a template for the state governments to amend their respective APMC Acts to facilitate reforms.

“The new law will create efficient market system. It will break the monopoly of any one institution and create conducive environment,” Dalwai said.

The draft is likely to be shared at a meeting to be attended by the Union Agriculture Minister on April 24.

Dalwai said Maharashtra had topped in implementing direct marketing as it issued 527 licences as against Rajasthan’s 76, Karnataka’s 37, and Gujarat’s and Telangana’s three each.

Similarly, Maharashtra has taken lead in allowing private marketing and contract farming by approving 41 and 10 proposals respectively.

“Commodities such as basmati rice, bitter gourd, chili, lady’s finger, tomato, and white onion were allowed for contract farming by the state governments. It is up to the states to decide on which commodity to be given the go-ahead,” Dalwai said. (IANS)

 

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Delhi Government Working Towards Robotic Solutions For Cleaning Sewers, Septic Tanks

Robots to clean sewers, septic tanks in Delhi? Find it out here

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FILE - A visitor shakes hands with a humanoid robot at 2018 China International Robot Show in Shanghai (VOA)

In an attempt to fully eradicate manual scavenging from the Indian capital, the Delhi government is working towards robotic solutions for cleaning sewers and septic tanks.

To achieve this goal, Delhi Cabinet Minister Rajendra Pal Gautam convened a meeting with experts from IIT, Delhi Technological University (DTU), New Delhi Municipal Council (NDMC), Delhi Jal Board (DJB) and Delhi Cantonment Board among others to discuss the possibilities and the need of robotic solution to sewer cleaning task, the government said on Thursday.

The idea was inspired from a Robot named Bandicoot, developed by Kerala-based start-up Genrobotics, that has been commissioned by municipal bodies in Kerala, Tamil Nadu and Andhra Pradesh.

About 80 manual scavengers have been trained in these states to operate the robots in a bid to offset the loss of livelihood.

Bandicoot, a semi-automatic robot, only requires a human operator to stand on the street near the manhole.

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It is a natural thing for man to become dependent on technology, and also addicted to it. Pixabay

“The machine with its many cameras, a robotic arm with 360 degree mobility, and a handy bucket to collect the waste does the work. The operator is only needed for navigation when the manhole is of non-standard size or there are multiple sewer lines below,” a statement said.

“The Delhi government has already taken up various efforts to stop the inhuman practice of manual scavenging and would soon introduce fully mechanised system to clean the sewage system and septic tanks. Still there is a need for robotic solutions for smaller lanes and by lanes where machines cannot go,” the Minister said.

During the meeting, experts from Indian Institute of Technology (IIT) said the robot is not constructed for the condition of Delhi. So they suggested that the DJB approach the company for demonstration and feasibility to use such machine in Delhi.

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While some experts suggested usage of censors in the manhole to check the status of toxic gases, some others suggested a database control room for various sewer line related data and a Helpline number for the same.

“The DJB has been asked to constitute a committee for implementation of various methods to use robot and other type of technology. The government will ensure funds to DJB for this purpose,” the Minister added. (IANS)