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IASbaba PIB Weekly : Press Information Bureau – 18th March to 24th March, 2018

  • IASbaba
  • March 27, 2018
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IASbaba Press Information Bureau 18th to 24th March, 2018

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GS-2

Tribal Health Care Research Programme

By: The Central Council for Research in Ayurvedic Science

Objective:

  • To study the living conditions of tribal people
  • To collect information related to health statistics
  • To study dietetic habits, nature and frequency of prevalent diseases, use of common medicinal plants in the area
  • To provide medical aid at the door steps of tribals
  • To propagate knowledge about Ayurvedic concept of Pathyapathya including hygiene habits, dietary practice.
  • To prevent diseases by adopting healthy way of living & clean environment (Swachhata)
  • To collect LHTs/folk medicines/ traditional practices prevalent in the area

The targets set for 2017-18 & achievements so far are as under: –

Target (2017-18) Achievement
Population to be covered for demographic studies –  100000 100316   Population covered
Documentation of Local Health Traditions (LHT) /Folk Claims – 150 159 LHTs/Folk claims documented

The National Health Policy 2017 targets under Health Status and Programme Impact

Life Expectancy and healthy life

  • Increase Life Expectancy at birth from 67.5 to 70 by 2025
  • Establish regular tracking of Disability Adjusted Life Years (DALY) Index as a measure of burden of disease and its trends by major categories by 2022
  • Reduction of TFR to 2.1 at national and sub-national level by 2025

Mortality by Age and/ or cause

  • Reduce under Five Mortality to 23 by 2025 and MMR from current levels to 100 by 2020
  • Reduce infant mortality rate to 28 by 2019
  • Reduce neo-natal mortality to 16 and still birth rate to “single digit” by 2025

Reduction of disease prevalence/ incidence

    • Achieve global target of 2020 which is also termed as target of 90:90:90, for HIV/AIDS,  i.e.,- 90% of all people living with HIV know their HIV status, – 90% of all people diagnosed with HIV infection receive sustained antiretroviral therapy and 90% of all people receiving antiretroviral therapy will have viral suppression.
    • Achieve and maintain elimination status of Leprosy by 2018, Kala-Azar by 2017 and Lymphatic Filariasis in endemic pockets by 2017.
    • To achieve and maintain a cure rate of >85% in new sputum positive patients for TB and reduce incidence of new cases, to reach elimination status by 2025.
    • To reduce the prevalence of blindness to 0.25/ 1000 by 2025 and disease burden by one third from current levels
  • To reduce premature mortality from cardiovascular diseases, cancer, diabetes or chronic respiratory diseases by 25% by 2025

National Child Labour Project (NCLP) Scheme

Aim: For rehabilitation of child labour including domestic helps

Under this Scheme:

  • Survey is conducted on regular basis by the District Project Societies headed by District Magistrate/Collector to identify child labour including children working as domestic helps.
  • Children in the age group of 9-14 years, rescued/withdrawn from work are enrolled in the NCLP Special Training Centres, where they are provided with bridge education, vocational training, mid-day meal, stipend, health care, etc. before being mainstreamed into formal education system.
  • Children in the age group of 5-8 years are directly linked to the formal education system through a close coordination with the Sarva Shiksha Abhiyan (SSA).
  • Awareness activities against the evil of child labour and enforcement of Child & Adolescent Labour (Prohibition & Regulation) Act, 1986 are conducted.

PENCIL: Platform for Effective Enforcement of No Child Labour, a robust enforcement mechanism in the form of an online portal


‘Study in India’ programme

Objectives

  • To improve the soft power of India with focus on the neighbouring countries and use it as a tool in diplomacy.
  • To boost the number of inbound International students in India.
  • To double India’s market share of global education exports from less than 1 percent to 2 percent.
  • Increase in contribution of international student in the form of direct spends, indirect spends, spill-over effects.
  • Improvement in overall quality of higher education.
  • Increase in global ranking of India as educational destination.
  • To reduce the export – Import imbalance in the number of International students.
  • Growth of India’s global market share of International students

Digital empowerment for Atal Pension Yojana

Objective: To encourage unorganised workers to make regular small savings during their working years towards pension benefits later

Regulated by: Pension Fund Regulatory and Development Authority (PFRDA)

Few recently introduced features for APY subscribers:

  • Grievance Module for APY Subscribers
  • APY Upgrade View / Downgrade View
  • APY/NPS lite ePRAN – SOT View for Subscribers
  • Aadhaar Seeding for APY Subscribers
  • APY@eNPS
  • Mobile Application

Four MoUs signed under aegis of DoNER for promotion of tourism in the North-East

The development of the North East Region is of prime importance for the overall inclusive growth of India, and tourism development has always been one of our key focus areas, keeping in mind the North East’s natural beauty and cultural heritage. MoUs with Airbnb are a step towards achieving the aim of doubling tourist growth rate in the next three years, by creating more sustainable accommodation options and enhancing the hospitality service standards in the region.

Under the MoUs, the NEC, NETDC and Airbnb agree to:

  • Expand tourism in the North East of India through Airbnb’s global platform
  • Improve the quality of homestay facilities and unique properties in the North East of India
  • Provide and promote outstanding tourism resources in the North East of India, and
  • Cooperate to improve the regulatory environment for home sharing in the North East of India

Strategic partnerships by the NERLP and NERCORMP with Airbnb:

  • To generate technology-enabled livelihood opportunities in tourism and hospitality for micro-entrepreneurs in the North East of India, and to help low-income families monetize their existing assets through home sharing.
  • Airbnb will provide training to core teams of the NERLP and NERCORMP, which will further train existing and potential hosts on home sharing, responsible hosting, hospitality standards, hygiene and basic amenities.

Between NERCORMP and HESCO (Himalayan Environmental Studies and Conservation Organization) for leveraging of community resources and appropriate local resources based technology for development.


MoU between Ministry of Agriculture & Farmers’ Welfare and Ministry of Skill Development & Entrepreneurship

Objective: To conduct skill development training programmes for agriculture and allied sector, on a regular basis, at Krishi Vigyan Kendra (KVKs)

The government believes that agriculture must be developed as a private enterprise so that it attracts more youth, and for this, the Ministry is working at four levels, namely:

  • Increase productivity,
  • Post-harvest management and fair-prices to the farmers for their produce,
  • Lower risk in agriculture,
  • Strengthen and develop other aspects of farmers’ income such as horticulture, animal husbandry, beekeeping, dairying, fisheries etc.

In view of the latest developments in agriculture, several new dimensions in agri-warehousing, cold chain, supply chain, dairy, poultry, meat, fishery, horticulture, agricultural mechanization, micro-irrigation, hydroponic greenhouses etc. have emerged for skilled and trained youths to gain self-employment.

Due to the low presence of agro-based industries in rural areas, it is important to increase the ratio of self-employment to employment to 100%. Also, there is a need to study the Skill Gap Analysis in agriculture sector by the Agriculture Skill Council of India (ASCI).


Indian Council of Forestry Research and Education Signs MOU with Technology Information, Forecasting & Assessment Council for Supporting Forest Based Communities

Objective: To provide livelihood opportunities and augment income of the forest based communities + assist the industries to optimize the utilization of forest based resources with access of technology to different users.

Through this collaboration, TIFAC shall help ICFRE to refine and up-scale the technologies developed, take technologies to the end users including farmers, State Forest Departments, forest based industries and forest dependent communities in a more effective manner.

Salient features:

  • Prioritization of technologies developed by ICFRE in consultation with stakeholders
  • Creating patent awareness in the field of forestry and environment including wood science and allied subjects for ICFRE and its institutes
  • Patent searching and filing in the field of Forestry and allied subjects
  • Identifying technology gaps and commercialization of technologies
  • Forest based technologies extension and transfer through stakeholder consultations
  • Interaction with stakeholders on regular basis

Cabinet Approves

Opening of Missions in Africa to implement commitments of India-Africa Forum Summit (IAFS-III): Will enhance India’s diplomatic outreach in the African continent and allow India to engage with Indian diaspora in African countries. Opening of new Missions is also a step towards implementing the vision of enhanced co-operation and engagement with Africa.

North-East Industrial Development Scheme (NEIDS) 2017: Government is incentivizing primarily the MSME Sector in order to promote employment in the North East States – with financial outlay of Rs.3000 crores upto March, 2020.

Continuation of National Health Mission (NHM) till 2020: Salient Features –

  • NHM will be the principle vehicle for the UHC (Universal Health Coverage)
  • The goals/targets aligned with National Health Policy, 2017 and SDG-3.
  • NHM has helped the country achieve the MDGs and will be the principal vehicle to achieve the SDG 3 targets including the target for UHC.
  • NHM will continue to strengthen the public health systems, particularly in high priority districts that include aspirational districts.
  • Shift from selective to comprehensive primary health care that includes care for common non-communicable diseases, geriatric health care, palliative care and rehabilitative care services etc. through strengthening of the SHCs/PHCs as Health and Wellness Centres (HWCs).
  • The HWCs would provide preventive, promotive, curative and rehabilitative services, including NCD screening and management and are expected to be linked to CHCs and the DHs through a two-way referral and follow up system to reduce fragmentation and improve continuity of care. Package of twelve services including free universal screening for common NCDs.
  • Posting of a Mid-Level health provider at the level of the sub-center who is trained in primary health care and public health related competencies.
  • Emphasis on wellness by integration of AYUSH, and a focus on health promotion and prevention particularly for chronic diseases
  • Ambitious targets have been set that includes key health indicators and others to spur performance.
  • Outcome oriented with increased funds earmarked for incentivizing better performance on key outcomes and health sector reforms.
  • Horizontal integration of all vertical disease programmes to ensure integrated approach to health and wellness.
  • Specially crafted and differential strategies and interventions to achieve set goals
  • Special focus on reducing Out Of Pocket Expenditure (OOPE) with intensification of Initiatives such as NHM Free Drugs and Diagnostics Services Initiatives, Pradhan Mantri National Dialysis Programme – Reduction on OOPE incorporated as a separate target.
  • Effective harnessing of available platforms for inter-sectoral convergent action on health
  • Team based incentives to foster spirit of cooperation and encouragement between frontline workers.
  • Sharpened focus on quality through Quality certification of public health facilities, Kayakalp, LaQshya. Utilisation of public health facilities is a specific target.
  • Proposed to expand basket of vaccines to all the states
  • Will integrate with the proposed National Health Protection Mission under Ayushman Bharat

Impact: It will result in / facilitate the:

  • Achievement of targets set for the NHM in the continuation period.
  • Improvement in key health indicators like Neo-natal Mortality Rate (NMR), Infant Mortality Rate (IMR), Under-Five Mortality Rate (U5MR), Maternal Mortality Rate (MMR) and Total Fertility Rate (TFR)
  • Reduction in incidence of communicable diseases
  • Reduction in Out Of Pocket Expenditure (OOPE) on health care
  • Improvement in coverage and utilization of Routine Immunization services and also those for non-communicable diseases

Ayushman Bharat – National Health Protection Mission

  • AB-NHPM will subsume the on-going centrally sponsored schemes –Rashtriya Swasthya Bima Yojana (RSBY) and the Senior Citizen Health Insurance Scheme (SCHIS)
  • The scheme has the benefit cover of Rs. 5 lakh per family per year –
    • Take care of almost all secondary care and most of tertiary care procedures
    • To ensure that nobody is left out (especially women, children and elderly) there will be no cap on family size and age in the scheme
    • The benefit cover will also include pre and post-hospitalisation expenses
    • All pre-existing conditions will be covered from day one of the policy
    • A defined transport allowance per hospitalization will also be paid to the beneficiary.
  • The target beneficiaries of the proposed scheme will be more than 10 crore families belonging to poor and vulnerable population based on SECC database.
  • The beneficiaries can avail benefits in both public and empanelled private facilities.

MoU between India and Guyana on cooperation in Renewable Energy: To establish the basis for a cooperative institutional relationship to encourage and promote technical bilateral cooperation on new and renewable energy issues on the basis of mutual benefit, equality and reciprocity.

Revision of the Agreement between India and Qatar: For the avoidance of double taxation and for the prevention of fiscal evasion with respect to taxes on income

Closure of India Development Foundation of Overseas Indians: In order to enhance synergies, improve efficiencies and avoid duplication of work

Moving official amendments in the “Surrogacy (Regulation) Bill, 2016”:

  • The Surrogacy (Regulation) Bill, 2016 proposes to regulate surrogacy in India by establishing National Surrogacy Board at the central level and, State Surrogacy Boards and Appropriate Authorities in the States and Union Territories.
  • The proposed legislation ensures effective regulation of surrogacy, prohibit commercial surrogacy and allow altruistic surrogacy to the needy Indian infertile couples.
  • Once the Bill is enacted by the Parliament, the National Surrogacy Board will be constituted. The States and Union Territories shall constitute the State Surrogacy Board and State Appropriate Authorities within three months of the notification by the Central Government.

Major impact:

  • Once in effect, the Act will regulate the surrogacy services in the country and will control the unethical practices in surrogacy, prevent commercialization of surrogacy and will prohibit potential exploitation of surrogate mothers and children born through surrogacy.
  • While commercial surrogacy will be prohibited including sale and purchase of human embryo and gametes, ethical surrogacy to the needy infertile couples will be allowed on fulfilment of certain conditions and for specific purposes.
  • All Infertile Indian married couple who want to avail ethical surrogacy will be benefitted.
  • Further, the rights of surrogate mother and children born out of surrogacy will be protected.

Note: The Bill shall apply to whole of India, except the State of Jammu and Kashmir.

Continuation of Centrally Sponsored Scheme of Rashtriya Uchchatar Shiksha Abhiyan (RUSA) – National Higher Education Mission

  • RUSA seeks to increase the Gross Enrolment Ratio of the country to 30% by 2020,
  • It also seeks to increase the spending on higher education by the State Governments,
  • The scheme, in its 2nd phase, aims at creation of 70 new model degree colleges and 8 new professional colleges; Enhancing quality and Excellence in 10 select State universities and 70 autonomous colleges, providing infrastructural support to 50 universities and 750 colleges etc.
  • Improving access, equity and accessibility of higher education in Slates through reforms such as academic reforms, governance reforms, affiliation reforms etc
  • Improve equity in higher education by providing adequate opportunities of higher education to socially deprived communities; promote inclusion of women, minorities, SC/ST/OBCs and differently abled persons,
  • To identity and fill up the existing gaps in higher education, by augmenting and supporting the State Governments’ efforts,
  • Promote a spirit of healthy competition amongst states and institutions to excel in quality higher education, research and innovation

Central Sector “Integrated Scheme for Development of Silk Industry” for sericulture sector:

The Scheme has four components –

  • Research & Development (R&D), Training, Transfer of Technology and IT Initiatives
  • Seed Organizations and farmers extension centres
  • Coordination and Market Development for seed, yarn and silk products and
  • Quality Certification System (QCS) by creating amongst others a chain of Silk Testing facilities, Farm based & post-cocoon Technology Up-gradation, and Export Brand Promotion

Details –

  • The scheme will promote Women Empowerment and livelihood opportunities to SC/ST and other weaker sections of the society. The scheme will help to increase productive employment from 85 lakhs to 1 crore persons by 2020.
  • The scheme aims to achieve self-sufficiency in silk production by 2022. To achieve this, production of high grade silk in India will reach 20,650 MTs by 2022 from the current level of 11,326 MTs thereby reducing imports to Zero.
  • R&D interventions will include race improvement through development of improved host plant varieties and improved disease resistant silkworm breeds by having collaborative research with reputed National Research organizations like IITs, CSIR, IISc and international research institutes on Sericulture in Japan, China, Bulgaria etc.; Technological advancements with respect to pre coccon and post cocoon sectors. Thrust will be given on technology upgradation and making mechanization affordable.

GS-3

Programmes to reduce dependence of traditional biomass cooking

Census 2011: About 65.9 per cent of households depend on solid biomass, including firewood, crop residue and cow dung as primary fuel for cooking in India.

Why is it a concern – The use of traditional biomass for cooking through simple traditional cook stove is a cause of indoor air pollution due to incomplete combustion of biomass which produces a range of toxic products.

Programmes with a view to provide alternate cooking solutions:

The Unnat Chulha Abhiyan: Promotion of improved biomass cook stove in the country for providing a clean cooking energy solution with a view to reduce consumption of fuel wood with higher efficiency and low emissions. So far 36,940 family type and 849 community type improved cook stoves have been distributed.

National Biogas and Manure Management Programme (NBMMP) for setting up of family type household biogas plants for meeting cooking energy needs of rural and semi urban areas and to save the use of firewood. About 49.6 lakh family type biogas plants have been installed in the country so far.

Promoting solar cookers to reduce the indoor air pollution. About 7.05 lakh solar cookers have been distributed / sold through the State Government so far.

Pradhan Mantri Ujjwala Yojana (PMUY) implemented by the Ministry of Petroleum and Natural Gas aims to safeguard the health of women & children by providing them with clean cooking fuel through LPG. Under this scheme, 8 crore new LPG connections will be provided to women’s belonging to Below Poverty Line (BPL) families up to 2020. More than 3.45 crore connections have been given under PMUY since the launch of the Scheme.


Bio-Medical Waste Management (Amendment) Rules, 2018

  • Bio-medical waste generators including hospitals, nursing homes, clinics, dispensaries, veterinary institutions, animal houses, pathological laboratories, blood banks, health care facilities, and clinical establishments will have to phase out chlorinated plastic bags (excluding blood bags) and gloves by March 27, 2019.
  • All healthcare facilities shall make available the annual report on its website within a period of two years from the date of publication of the Bio-Medical Waste Management (Amendment) Rules, 2018.
  • Operators of common bio-medical waste treatment and disposal facilities shall establish bar coding and global positioning system for handling of bio-medical waste in accordance with guidelines issued by the Central Pollution Control Board by March 27, 2019.
  • The State Pollution Control Boards/ Pollution Control Committees have to compile, review and analyze the information received and send tis information to the Central Pollution Control Board in a new Form (Form IV A), which seeks detailed information regarding district-wise bio-medical waste generation, information on Health Care Facilities having captive treatment facilities, information on common bio-medical waste treatment and disposal facilities.
  • Every occupier, i.e. a person having administrative control over the institution and the premises generating biomedical waste shall pre-treat the laboratory waste, microbiological waste, blood samples, and blood bags through disinfection or sterilization on-site in the manner as prescribed by the World Health Organization (WHO) or guidelines on safe management of wastes from health care activities and WHO Blue Book 2014 and then sent to the Common bio-medical waste treatment facility for final disposal.

Cyber Security

National Cyber Security Policy (2013) provides for developing effective Public Private Partnership and collaborative engagements through technical and operational cooperation and contribution for enhancing the security of cyberspace. A Joint Working Group (JWG) for Public Private Partnership on cyber security has been set up at NSCS which is working in following areas:

  • Setting up of Information Sharing and Analysis Centres (ISACs) in critical sectors like Banking, Telecommunications and Power
  • Establishment of Centres of Excellence (CoEs) on Policy Research, Standards, Audit
  • Capacity building for law enforcement agencies and cyber forensics
  • Establishment testing labs for telecom and IT equipment under PPP model  

The following mechanism and measures are in place to ensure digital safety and cyber security:

  • Indian Computer Emergency Response Team (CERT-In) is designated as a National nodal agency to coordinate matters related to cyber security incidents in the country.
  • National Critical Information Infrastructure Protection Centre (NCIIPC) has been setup to enhance the protection and resilience of Nation’s Critical information infrastructure.
  • Government has issued general guidelines for Chief Information Security Officers (CISOs) regarding their key roles and responsibilities for securing applications / infrastructure and compliance Organisations are encouraged to develop their organisation level cyber security policy.
  • Public Private Partnership has been developed for cooperation and collaboration for responding cyber security incidents.
  • Awareness has been created in law enforcement agencies through conducting cybercrime awareness workshops.
  • Information Security Education and Awareness (ISEA) Project is being implemented with an objective of capacity building in the area of Information Security, training of Government personnel and creation of mass Information Security awareness. The project aims to train 1.14 Lakhs persons under Academic activities (formal and non-formal courses) by the year 2020. So far more than 71000 candidates have been trained in various formal/non-formal courses in Information Security through 52 academic and training institutions.
  • Cyber forensics training labs in all north eastern states, CBI Academy Ghaziabad and cities such as Mumbai, Pune, Kolkata and Bangalore have been setup and more than 28,000 state police from North Eastern States, Maharashtra, West Bengal and Karnataka have been trained for dealing with cybercrime.
  • Cyber Crisis Management Plan (CCMP) for countering cyber threats and cyber terrorism has been developed and so far 60 workshops have been conducted for Central Govt. Ministries/Departments, States/Union Territories and other organisations.
  • Research and development is carried out in the thrust areas of cyber security including (a) Cryptography and cryptanalysis, (b) Network & System Security, (c) Monitoring & Forensics, and (d) Vulnerability Remediation & Assurance through sponsored projects at recognized R&D organizations.
  • Government has initiated setting up of National Cyber Coordination Centre (NCCC) to generate necessary situational awareness of existing and potential cyber security threats and enable timely information sharing for proactive, preventive and protective actions by individual entities. Phase-I of NCCC has been made operational.
  • Government has launched the Cyber Swachhta Kendra (Botnet Cleaning and Malware Analysis Centre) which provides detection of malicious programs and free tools to remove the same.

Prelims oriented Facts:

President of the People’s Republic of China: Mr. Xi Jinping

Chancellor of the Federal Republic of Germany: Dr. Angela Merkel

Governor of Bihar: Shri Satya Pal Malik

First Home Minister of India: Sardar Patel

22nd March: World Water Day

24th March: World Tuberculosis Day

24th March 2018: Earth Hour

Constitution of Fifteenth Finance Commission: Under the Chairmanship of Shri N. K. Singh

Okhla Bird Sanctuary: Noida, Uttar Pradesh – home to a large number of resident, as well as migratory birds like grey-headed fish eagle, Baikal teal, Baer’s pochard and Sarus crane. It is home to 32 species of reptiles, 7 species of amphibians and 186 plant species.

Rooppur Nuclear Power Project: Bangladesh – A Memorandum of Understanding (MoU) was signed at Moscow, Russia between the State Atomic Energy Corporation ‘Rosatom’; the Ministry of Science and Technology of the People’s Republic of Bangladesh and the Department of Atomic Energy, India.

Parivara and Talawara: Inclusion of the communities as synonym of “Nayaka’ at SI. No. 38 in the list of STs of Karnataka

Upcoming Plastic Hub – Plastic Park + Plastic Recycling unit: Deoghar District, Jharkhand

Kurangani Forest: Tamil Nadu (In news due to the forest fires that have been claiming lives)

Pradhan Mantri Jeevan Jyoti Bima Yojana (PMJJBY) and Pradhan Mantri Suraksha Bima Yojana (PMSBY): Provide insurance cover to common people, especially poor and the under-privileged sections of the society.

World’s First Trusted Digital Repository: National Cultural Audio-visual Archives (NCAA) project of the Ministry of Culture, Government of India, implemented by Indira Gandhi National Centre for the Arts (IGNCA) – The primary objective of the NCAA is to identify and preserve the cultural heritage of India available in audio-visual form through a process of digitization and making it accessible to the people.

Divyang in medical profession: Approval to amend the regulation for admission to PG medical courses in order to expand the scope of persons with disabilities getting benefit of reservation. The percentage of seats to be filled up by persons with disabilities has been increased from 3% to 5% in accordance with the Rights of Persons with Disabilities Act, 2016.

Paramparagat Krishi Vikash Yojana: To promote organic farming – 2 lakh hectares has been made suitable for organic farming thereby benefitting 5 lakh farmers.

DeenDayal SPARSH (i.e. Scholarship for Promotion of Aptitude & Research in Stamps as a Hobby): To award annual scholarships to children of Standard VI to IX having good academic record and also pursuing Philately as a hobby through a competitive selection process in all postal circles.

Festival of Innovation and Entrepreneurship (FINE) – an initiative to recognise, respect, showcase, reward innovations and to foster a supportive ecosystem for innovators

Bilateral Exercise ‘Varuna’: Navy-to-Navy cooperative engagement between Indian and French navy

Second Film and Training Institute of India (FTII) will be set up in: Itanagar

IEC: Information, Education and Communication (IEC) in the Swachh Bharat Mission (Gramin) {SBM-G}

Sand Mining Framework: Provide a roadmap to the States helping them to frame their policies and act as a check on illegal mining of sand.  

Integrated Programme for Older Persons (IPOP): For improving the quality of life of senior citizens by providing basic amenities like shelter, food, and medical case and entertainment opportunities and by encouraging productive and active ageing. Under this Scheme, financial assistance is provided to Non-Governmental/Voluntary Organisations, Panchayati Raj Institutions etc. for running and maintenance of projects like Old Age Homes, Physiotherapy Centres, Day Care Centres, etc.

Global Initiative for Academic Networks (GIAN): to help foreign faculty to teach some courses in the higher educational institutions.

Literacy rates among Scheduled Castes (SCs) and Scheduled Tribes (STs) female, in the age group of 7 and above: 56.46 per cent and 49.35 per cent respectively – In order to improve literacy rate, Saakshar Bharat, a Centrally Sponsored Scheme for Adult Education and Skill Development is being implemented in rural areas of 410 districts in 26 States and one UT that had adult female literacy rate of 50 per cent and below as per Census 2001, and including left wing extremism affected districts, irrespective of their literacy rates, with special focus on women and other disadvantaged groups.

SwachhVidyalaya initiative: To provide separate toilets for girls and boys in all Government schools under the Swachh Bharat Abhiyan.

Sustainable Action for Transforming Human Capital in Education (SATH-E) Project of NITI Aayog – To introduce System-wide Governance Transformation in School Education; SATH-E aspires to be a ‘saathi’, to the educational system with the student and the teacher at its centre

Sarva Shiksha Abhiyan (SSA): Bridging gender and social category gaps in elementary education is one of the major goals – Universal enrolment at elementary level is the primary goal

  • Attempts to reach out to girls and children belonging to Scheduled Caste (SC), Scheduled Tribes (ST), Muslims and other marginalised communities – the districts with high concentration of population of SCs, STs and Muslims have been identified as Special Focus Districts (SFDs). The criteria for identifying the SFDs in case of SCs and STs is a population of 25% and above, while for Muslims, it is 20% and above population.
  • Has also given attention to urban deprived children, children affected by periodic migration, and children living in remote and scattered habitations.
  • Shagun portal has been launched to create a repository of best practices from the states and UTs and to enable online monitoring of implementation of the various interventions under the programme.

Kasturba Gandhi Balika Vidyalayas (KGBVs): upper primary residential schools for girls belonging predominantly to the SC, ST, Other Backward Caste and minorities – have played an important role in furthering the goal of girls’ education in educationally backward blocks of the country.

Rashtriya Madhyamik Shiksha Abhiyan (RMSA) provides for opportunities to secondary stage students to build their capacity in ICT skills and make them learn through computer aided learning process.

Saksham Scholarship Scheme: encourage economically weaker differently abled students to pursue technical education at Diploma and Degree levels.

Mahila Shakti Kendra scheme: To empower rural women through community participation

Identification of Particularly Vulnerable Tribal Groups (PVTGs) in the State of Maharashtra:

  1. Katkaria (Kathodia)
  2. Kolam
  3. Maria Gond

Development of PVTGs: Enables the States to focus on activities including housing, land distribution, land development, agricultural development, animal husbandry, construction of link roads, installation of non-conventional sources of energy for lighting purpose, social security including Janshree Beema Yojana or any other innovative activity meant for the comprehensive socio-economic development of PVTGs are considered under it.

Support to Tribal Research Institute (TRIs): Financial assistance is provided to strengthen the Tribal Research Institutes

    • Research & Documentation: – Documentation of tribal welfare.  Preservation of tribal culture among others written medium, support to tribal artisans, exhibitions
  • Training and Capacity building: (I) Laws/constitutional provisions in respect of Scheduled areas/tribal rights; (II) Capacity building of functionaries and tribal representatives on socio-economic programs.

POSHAN: PM’s Overarching Scheme for Holistic Nourishment

Key Nutrition strategies and interventions are –

  • Supplementary nutrition
  • IYCF(Infant and Young Child Feeding)immunisation
  • Food fortification
  • Adolescent nutrition
  • Dietary diversification and maternal health & nutrition

Activities to be undertaken by States/UTs as part of POSHAN Abhiyaan:

  • Implementation of Convergence Action Plan at State/UT Level
  • Procurement of Smartphones, Tablets and Growth Monitoring Devices by States/UTs
  • Roll-Out of ICDS-CAS(Common Application Software).
  • Implementation of ILA(Incremental Learning Approach) and CBE(Community based events).

To enhance the employability of engineering students

  • Induction Training
  • Revision of Curriculum
  • Mandatory Internships
  • Industry Readiness
  • Mandatory Accreditation

Schemes: National Employment Enhancement Mission (NEEM) and Employability Enhancement Training Program (EETP)

Partnerships: With Ministry of Micro, Small and Medium Enterprises (MSME), Govt of India, Internshala, NETiit and LinkedIn to provide internship opportunities and industry exposure to students for aligning their technical knowhow with industry requirements.

Prime Minister’s Shram Award:

  • Instituted in 1985, for the workers in recognition of outstanding contribution towards production, and for showing exemplary zeal and enthusiasm in discharge of their duties in the Central/ State Governments Public Sector and Departmental Undertakings.  
  • The Awards are presented to the workmen as defined in the Industrial Disputes Act, 1947 and employed in the Departmental Undertakings of the Central and State Governments, Central and State Public Sector Undertakings and private sector having minimum of 500 employees on roll and engaged in manufacturing and productive processes and whose performance is assessable.

Barunei Hill, Odisha –

  • Indian Institute of Technology, Bhubaneswar is set amid the lush greenery at the foothills of the historic Barunei hill.
  • It is believed that Lord Rama visited this area and that the Pandavas stayed here during their exile.
  • 200 years ago in 1817, Bakshi Jagabandhu led the Paika Bidroh, which was a war of independence much before 1857.

Skill Development Institute of Oil PSUs at Bhubaneswar

  • Will offer young people short courses on a spectrum of skills ranging from simple to more complex ones related to Artificial Intelligence, 3D printing and Advanced Robotics
  • SDI will be the country’s first Skill Development Institute in the hydrocarbons sector.
  • Aims to train about 50,000 youth over the next 10 years.

Important Points from – “Swarajya to Surajya”: 1st National Consultation on Strengthening of Local Self Government

A radical change is needed if cities are to provide a socio-economic environment that will be inclusive, contribute to better quality of life, and sustain rapid growth. To achieve this following steps are necessary

  • Local governments should have functional autonomy and should aim to be financially viable.
  • Parastatals should not be allowed to undermine the authority of ULBs.
  • Need to establish a dedicated and a specialised trained cadre to serve and cater to the complex needs of Urban local body governance.

Participatory democracy, transparency and accountability are the key pillars for new urban governance where formal participation procedures should be complemented by collaborative partnerships which go beyond consultation of policies/interventions, recognizing ward committees and area sabhas as active “partners”. Innovative and effective participation tools should be adopted to foster meaningful engagement bringing equality, liveability and democratic governance to the process of urban transformation.

Women Science Congress – Key Points

Statistics on the condition of health of women:

  • Breast and colon cancer account for 27 per cent and 22.86 per cent of all cancer-related deaths in the country need for easily accessible and user-friendly cancer detection kit to save women.
  • More than 47 per cent of people living with HIV infection in India are women and children.

Obstacles in increased representation of women in the field of science and technology:

  • Lack of encouragement
  • Stereotypes
  • Child care
  • Competition
  • Marginalisation and bias act

DISHA programme – For research in various fields of science and technology, comprising of Women Scientist

  • Schemes A for Basic/Applied Sciences
  • Women Scientist Schemes B for Societal benefit
  • Women Scientist Schemes C for internship in Intellectual Property Rights (IPRs) and self-employment.  

Need for three R’s for women in scientific institutions and research –

  • Recruitment
  • Retention
  • Recognition

Quote: “We all should realize that it requires for the sunshine and the rain to create a beautiful rainbow”

North East Region Textile Promotion Scheme (NERTPS): To boost the Silk sector in the region

Under the scheme, among various projects of Textile sector, sericulture projects have been approved under two broad categories – Integrated Sericulture Development Project (ISDP) and Intensive Bivoltine Sericulture Development Project (IBSDP). These schemes aim at holistic development of sericulture in all its spheres from plantation development to production of fabrics with value addition at every stage of production chain. These projects are intended to establish sericulture as viable commercial activity by creating necessary infrastructure and imparting skills to the locals for silkworm rearing and allied activities in silk production value chain.

Centralized Public Grievance Redress and Monitoring System (CPGRAMS): An online web-enabled system is the platform which primarily aims to enable submission of grievances by the aggrieved citizens from anywhere and anytime.

Pradhan Mantri Khanij Kshetra Kalyan Yojna (PMKKKY) scheme:

  • to implement various developmental and welfare projects/programs in mining affected areas that complement the existing ongoing schemes/projects of State and Central Government
  • to minimize/mitigate the adverse impacts, during and after mining, on the environment, health and socio-economics of people in mining districts
  • to ensure long-term sustainable livelihoods for the affected people in mining areas

Pradhan Mantri Ujjwala Yojana

  • To provide deposit-free LPG connections to 5 crore women belonging to the Below Poverty Line (BPL) with a budgetary provision of Rs. 8000 crore and the target has now been enhanced to 8 crore with additional budgetary provision of Rs. 4,800 crore.
  • The beneficiaries under the Scheme are identified through Socio Economic Caste Census (SECC) 2011.
  • The Government has now decided to cover the following categories under the Scheme :-
    • All SC/STs households beneficiaries of Pradhan Mantri Awas Yojana(PMAY) (Gramin)
    • Antyoday Anna Yojana(AAY)
    • Forest dwellers
    • Most Backward Classes (MBC)
    • Tea & Ex-Tea Garden Tribes
    • People residing in Islands
    • People residing in river islands

12 sites identified for development under Iconic Tourist Sites Project

  1. Taj Mahal & Fatehpur Sikri (Uttar Pradesh)
  2. Ajanta and Ellora (Maharashtra)
  3. Humayun Tomb, Qutub Minar and Red Fort (Delhi)
  4. Colva Beach (Goa)
  5. Amer Fort (Rajasthan)
  6. Somnath and Dholavira (Gujarat)
  7. Khajuraho (Madhya Pradesh)
  8. Hampi (Karnataka)
  9. Mahablipuram (Tamil Nadu)
  10. Kaziranga (Assam)
  11. Kumarakom (Kerala)
  12. Mahabodhi Temple (Bihar)

Personalities in News:

Hindi poet Kedarnath Singh

  • Awarded with Jnanpith Award in 2013
  • He was known for his literary works including “Abhi Bilkul Abhi”, “Jameen Pak Rahi Hai”and “Akaal mein Saaras”

Dr. Ram Manohar Lohia

  • An activist for the Indian independence movement and a socialist political leader
  • One of the founders of the Congress Socialist Party and editor of its mouthpiece Congress Socialist
  • Wrote his PhD thesis paper on the topic of Salt Taxation in India, focusing on Gandhi’s socio-economic theory.

Quotes:

Prime Minister of India, Shri Narendra Modi

“Bilateral relations between India and China are vital for the realization of 21st Century as ‘Asian Century’”.

Vice President of India, Shri M.Venkaiah Naidu

  • “We should move away from the current environment of settling scores in which each party adopts the strategy of ‘I disrupt because you have done it before. Can we end this spiral? I think we can and we should. Let us make a new beginning”.
  • 3Ds – Decentralisation, Devolution and Development go hand-in-hand for the prosperity of rural and urban areas and the States should ensure transfer of 3 Fs -Functions, Functionaries and Funds to local governments.
  • To build a new India from the bottom, the only way is to make local governments empowered, effective and functional.
  • Indian corporates need to Reform, Perform and Transform so that they can open up new vistas of global opportunities which would in turn benefit our country and its people.

Mahatma Gandhi

  • “No perfect democracy is possible without perfect nonviolence at the back of it. So, let us abjure violent emotions, violent speech and violent actions. Let us discuss, debate and decide in a dignified manner”.

On Disaster Management:

“Disaster Risk Reduction should be seen not as a cost to economic growth, but rather as a valuable asset for the country”.

There is a need to reduce disaster risk by strengthening resilience, through a six-pronged approach of

  • Risk Identification
  • Risk Reduction
  • Preparedness
  • Financial Protection
  • Resilient Reconstruction
  • Societal Awareness

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