Assam chief minister Sarbananda Sonowal heading a cabinet meeting at Janata Bhawan in Dispur on Monday Credit: Twitter

Guwahati: The Assam government has decided upon some major issues in terms of education, film and industry of the state in the latest cabinet meeting held at Janata Bhawan in Dispur on Monday.

Interestingly, among all decisions, the state government has decided to revise the syllabus for Assam Public Service Commission (APSC)‘s Combined Competitive Examinations (CCE) on the lines of the Union Public Service Commission (UPSC) examinations in an effort to help students take both the exams with the same preparation.

Chief minister Sarbananda Sonowal took to Twitter to inform about the new decisions. In the tweet, Sonowal also said that the state government has decided to provide a subsidy of Rs 50,000 to students who have applied for higher education loans and also to those who will be applying this year.

In another decision, the Cabinet also fixed the education qualifications to contest ward commissioner election through Assam Municipal (Amendment) Act as Class 12 pass for general category candidates and Class 10 pass for SC/ST/OBC category, besides the two children norm and the household toilet being made essential for all candidates.

The meeting also decided to recruit a total of 80 assistant engineers and 70 junior engineers under the Regulation 3 (f) for the water resource department to build and repair embankments of the rivers in state.

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It also decided to provide reservation of 80% in managerial and supervisory and 90% in non-managerial cadre in state Public Sector Units and industries availing benefits from the state government.

Meanwhile, the state cabinet in a landmark decision also approved to relax the restrictions on cultivation and felling of Agar and sandalwood trees in non-forest lands and also waived off the mandatory registration for cultivation and felling of Agar wood for up to 35 bighas of land in state.

In a subsequent tweet, CM Sonowal further informed that an international trade centre for regulating the sale of Agar wood will soon be set up in Golaghat district of Assam.

Among others, the cabinet also decided to waive the cess on green leaves for three years to the big tea estates to strengthen the tea industry of the state and also decided to distribute free sugar to tea garden beneficiaries at 2 kg per family per month.

Apart from this, the cabinet also passed a new State Industrial Policy which aims to provide interest subsidy on working capital loan and power subsidy among others. As per the Assam State Industrial Policy 2019, it will grant power subsidy at Rs 2 per unit for a period of 5 years subject to a maximum of Rs 50 lakh per annum. The policy also has provision of 50% generating subsidy up to Rs 20 lakh, exemption of stamp duty up to 100% up to Rs 25 lakh, 75% subsidy on technology transfer subject to a ceiling of Rs 10 lakh and financial assistance to MSME at 30% subsidy, subject to a ceiling of Rs 5 lakh.

Posting on his Twitter handle, the chief minister also informed that a New Film policy has been approved by the cabinet in an effort to promote films in Assamese and other indigenous languages. The New Film policy will grant 25% subsidy for films made at a cost of Rs 1 crore. It will also grant Rs 1 crore subsidy for films winning national awards and Rs 2 crore for films nominated for Oscars, respectively. A corpus fund will be also be created by collecting Rs 1 from each ticket sold for the welfare of artistes.

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