The Center tables a bill amending the law on general insurance in LS

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On Friday, the government introduced two key bills in the Lok Sabha, one aimed at divesting the insurance sector and the other aimed at tackling pollution in the national capital region, amid protests by members of the opposition on various issues.

The Minister of Finance, Nirmala Sitharaman, tabled the bill amending the 2021 bill on general insurance activities (nationalization). pandemonium.

The insurance sector bill is widely seen as a decision to privatize state-run insurance companies, following the announcement of the Union’s 2021-22 budget by the Minister of Finance.

During the budget presentation, the Minister of Finance said: “We propose to proceed with the privatization of two public sector banks and a general insurance company in fiscal year 22. This would require legislative changes. , and I propose to present the changes during this session (budget) itself. “

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The bill, however, was not introduced in the February budget session.

Changes to the parent statute, the General Insurance Business (Nationalization) Act, 1972, were approved by the Modi cabinet on Wednesday. The Insurance Amendment Bill is part of a larger government divestment program, which plans to sell stakes in five state-owned companies and accelerate its privatization program to attract foreign investment to an affected economy. by the crisis.

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The government hopes to achieve its divestment target of ??1.75 trillion for FY22 despite hurdles posed by the coronavirus pandemic.

A panel led by the finance minister had authorized the divestment and downsizing of the country’s largest insurer, Life Insurance Corporation Ltd, the first step towards finalizing the bill. The government also authorized the insurer’s listing on the stock markets and initial public offerings (IPOs).

The second bill, the Commission for the Management of Air Quality in the National Capital Region and Adjacent Areas, 2021, if passed, will see the creation of a statutory committee for the first time to monitor and mitigate pollution in Greater Delhi.

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Farmers unions opposed an earlier order to set up a commission to penalize polluters. “The government should give us a grant to stop stubble burning. Farmers have no choice, ”said Gurnam Singh Chaduni, an agricultural union leader who is currently leading protests against three recent farm laws.

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