On 29 June 2006, the Union Cabinet approved a slew of proposals including a National Agricultural Innovation Project (NAIP), additional funds of around Rs 200 crore to strengthen agricultural education, and a Rs 1,039-crore package for polio eradication strategies. The NAIP, for which a cost of $250 million (nearly Rs 1,125 crore) was approved, is expected to fine-tune agricultural research in the country. The six-year project, involving $200-million credit from the World Bank, would be implemented from July 1 this year.
The project would have four components including one in which the Indian Council of Agricultural Research would be the catalysing agent for the management of change of the national agricultural system.
The other components would involve research in production and consumption systems, research on sustainable rural livelihood security, and basic and strategic research in the frontier areas of agricultural sciences.
The decision would result in about 15 value chain development reports for serving as models for other potential areas and investment planning.
The Cabinet also gave its approval for authorising the National Institute of Science Communication and Information Resources (NISCAIR) to sign a non-disclosure agreement with International Patent Offices, for making the Traditional
Knowledge Digital Library (TKDL) accessible to patent examiners. This decision would enable NISCAIR to sign the non-disclosure agreement and provide access to TKDL database 24x7 on a secured portal as per the terms and conditions of the access agreement.
The Cabinet has also approved the proposal to cover the entire cost of Rs 10 crore of TKDL which documents Indias traditional medicine and other systems in patent application format in five international languages. TKDL will prevent misappropriation of traditional knowledge, particularly with respect to traditional medicine. International Patent Offices and their examiners would not make any third party disclosure other than what is necessary and essential for the purposes of patent search and examination. The entire work of TKDL would be completed by December 2007.
The Cabinet Committee on Economic Affairs (CCEA) approved funds to the tune of Rs 1,039 crore for implementing polio eradication strategies in 2006-07. It also approved a sum of Rs 20 crore for corrective strategy and rehabilitation of polio victims.