Following subject panel’s recommendation

The government is considering withdrawing the Kerala State Water Resources Regulatory Authority Bill 2012 aimed at effective utilisation of water resources , Minister for Water Resources P.J. Joseph told the Assembly on Monday.

Replying to a question in the House on Monday, the Minister said the subject committee at its meeting on January 21 had recommended withdrawal of the Bill.

As many as 300 drinking water projects had been completed in the Jalanidhi Phase II in 200 panchayats at a cost of Rs.1,022 crore, Mr. Joseph said.

Karunya pharmacy

Health Minister V.S. Sivakumar said another 19 Karunya community pharmacy centres would be opened by April this year. Already, 16 centres sanctioned in the phase one had been opened.

Chief Minister Oommen Chandy would inaugurate the Kerala Campaign against Cancer being launched with the support of local bodies on February 4.

Doctors had been trained and Asha workers would undertake door-to-door screening. The project, which includes awareness campaign, screening of people, and treatment, would be launched initially in Thiruvananthapuram, Pathanamthitta, Alappuzha, Idukki, and Thrissur districts.

A food safety inspector would be posted in each Assembly constituency to intensify inspection by the Food Safety Department, he said.

Health policy

A comprehensive health policy was under the consideration of the government, Mr. Sivakumar said. The demand for issuing health cards to all people would be looked into.

A meeting of health officials, chaired by the Health Secretary on January 22, had looked into a report prepared by an expert committee.

In a written reply to a question, the Health Minister said the government was considering a legislation to ensure that only those with prescribed qualification worked in private hospitals and clinics as existing rules prevent the department’s intervention.

Literary tourism

Replying to a question, Minister for Tourism A.P. Anil Kumar said a Rs.4-crore literary tourism project would be launched at Haripad. The first phase of the Muziris project would be commissioned in February.

In the second phase, a spice route project had been prepared for linking 31 countries with the support of Unesco.

The Tourism Minister said administrative sanction had been given for the Rs.4.92-crore Culture Mosaic Museum at Mattancherry. The Kerala Tourism Development Corporation had worked out a multi-faith tour package for tourists.

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