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On December 10, 2023, the 26th Eastern Regional Council meeting was held under the chairmanship of Union Home Minister Amit Shah at 'Samvad' located at the Chief Minister's Secretariat in Patna, Bihar, in which Chief Minister Nitish Kumar attended and also hosted the meeting.
- This was the 5th meeting of the Eastern Regional Council in Patna on the instructions of the Central Government. Earlier meetings had taken place in 1958, 1963, 1985 and 2015.
- Ministers and senior officials of Bihar, Jharkhand, Odisha & West Bengal attended the meeting.
- It may be noted that the Chief Minister had participated in the meeting of the Eastern Regional Council held in Orissa on February 28, 2020.
- In the meeting, the Chief Minister said that the State Government has carried out caste based census using its resources and released its data, according to which the total population of Bihar is 13.7 lakh 25 thousand 310 out of which 53 lakh 72 thousand 22 people are living outside Bihar. 12 crore 53 lakh 53 thousand are living in the state.
- In the caste based census, the backward class population was found to be 27.12 percent, extreme backward class was 36.01 percent, scheduled caste was 19.65 percent, scheduled tribe was 1.68 percent and general category was 15.52 percent.
- The Chief Minister said that the reservation limit in the state has been increased from 50 to 65 percent. A law has been passed for this. 10 percent reservation is already available for economically weaker people of general category. All together the total reservation has reached 75 percent.
- The Chief Minister said that poor families are found in all castes, out of which 25.09 percent of general category, 33.16 percent of backward class, 33.58 percent of extremely backward class, 42.93 percent of scheduled caste and 42.70 percent of scheduled tribe people are poor. The total number of poor families in all categories is 94 lakh.
- The Chief Minister said that in order to advance the poor families, a scheme has been made to provide assistance of up to Rs 2 lakh for employment to one of its members.
- For families who do not have houses, the amount for purchasing land has been increased from Rs 60 thousand to Rs 1 lakh. Rs 1 lakh 20 thousand will be given to build a house.
- From the year 2018, under the 'Sustainable Livelihood Scheme', the assistance amount of Rs 1 lakh being given to extremely poor families for employment has been increased to Rs 2 lakh.
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