The Union Cabinet on Wednesday approved ₹1,650 crore for providing 75 lakhs connection under Ujjwala scheme. It also gave nod to third phase of e-court mission with an outlay of ₹7,210 crore.

Meanwhile, in a separate decision, the Cabinet Committee on Economic Affairs (CCEA) cleared over ₹9,500-crore FDI proposal in Suven Pharmaceuticals Limited.

Ujjwala scheme

In order to implement August 29 decision for 75 lakh new connections under Ujjwala, the Cabinet approved budgetary provision of ₹1,650 crore to be spent over a period of three years (2023-24 to 2025-26). Giving details of the decision, Information & Broadcasting Minister Anurag Singh Thakur said initial expenditure of ₹2,200 per connection, which cost two-burner stove and first cylinder, will be borne by oil marketing companies and they will be reimbursed by the government.

“The beneficiary will not have to give any deposit. Connection will be totally free,” Thakur said. At this moment, there are 9.6 crore connections under PM Ujjwala Scheme. As on date a consumer gets a subsidy of ₹200 per cylinder. Since, price has been lowered by ₹200 which means an Ujjwala connection is getting benefit of ₹400.

Giving reasons behind expansion of the scheme, Thakur said that some eligible households still do not have LPG connection. This is due to multiple reasons – new households are formed every year as a result of rising population, marriages, migration, nuclearlisation of families, left over households, extremely remote locations etc. There is demand for 15 lakh PMUY connections and as on August 31, added a government statement.

E-court project

In another decision, the Cabinet approved third phase of e-court project at the cost of ₹7,210 crore. Phase III of the e-courts project focusses on adopting technology by users, a robust governance framework and a judicial system that is more accessible, efficient, and equitable for every individual who seeks justice or is part of the delivery of justice in India.  

“This phase aims to usher in a regime of maximum ease of justice by moving towards digital, online and paperless courts through digitisation of the entire court records including legacy records and by bringing in universalization of e-filing/ e-payments,” a government statement said.

The government spent ₹640 crore in Phase I to provide laptop and other hardware to over 14,200 districts and sub- ordinate courts. In Phase II, over ₹1,600 crore spent to cover another over 18,700 courts to enable them use technology for faster delivery of justice.

The statement also said that main objective of e-courts Phase-III is to create a unified technology platform for the judiciary, which will provide a seamless and paperless interface between the courts, the litigants and other stakeholders. “Emphasis on automated delivery of court summons by further expanding the NSTEP (National Serving and Tracking of Electronic Processes) to drastically reduce the delays in trials,” it said.

FDI in Suven

Meanwhile, CCEA approved the FDI proposal for foreign investment of up to ₹9,589 crore in Suven Pharmaceuticals Limited by Cyprus-based Berhyanda Limited, Cyprus for acquiring over 75 per cent shares. With this the company will have over 90 per cent equity by foreign investors.

As per the FDI policy, 100 per cent foreign investment is allowed under automatic route in greenfield pharmaceutical projects. In brownfield pharmaceutical projects, FDI up to 74 per cent are allowed under the automatic route and government approval is required for investment beyond 74 per cent.