Government Schemes and Programs

  • Arogya Manthan 2023 to mark 5 years of Ayushman Bharat PM-JAY and 2 years of Ayushman Bharat Digital Mission

    Source: The post is based on the article Arogya Manthan 2023 to mark 5 years of Ayushman Bharat PM-JAY and 2 years of Ayushman Bharat Digital Mission”  published in PIB on 25th September 2023

    What is the News?

    The National Health Authority (NHA), Ministry of Health and Family Welfare (MoHFW) is organizing ‘Arogya Manthan’ to celebrate five years of Ayushman Bharat Pradhan Mantri Jan Arogya Yojana (AB PM-JAY) and two years of Ayushman Bharat Digital Mission (ABDM).

    What is Ayushman Bharat – Pradhan Mantri Jan Arogya Yojana (AB-PMJAY)?

    AB-PMJAY was launched in 2018.It is the world’s largest Government funded health assurance scheme.

    It provides health assurance of up to Rs.5 Lakh per family per year for secondary and tertiary healthcare hospitalizations.

    It is a completely cashless and paperless scheme.The benefits under AB-PMJAY are portable across the country.

    There is no cap on family size, or age or gender.The beneficiary families under the scheme have been identified from the Socio Economic Caste Census (SECC) of 2011 on the basis of select deprivation and occupational criteria across rural and urban areas. 

    What is Ayushman Bharat Digital Mission(ABDM)?

    ABDM was launched in 2021.It aims at creating a secure online platform based on open, interoperable digital standards. 

    This will enable access and exchange of health records of citizens with their consent through services such as the issuance of Health ID, Healthcare Professionals Registry, Health Facility Registry and Health Records. 

    This will boost the adoption of digital technologies in healthcare, thereby making quality healthcare more accessible and affordable.

  • Fourth Gender Samvaad was co-organized by Deendayal Antyodaya Yojana-National Rural Livelihoods Mission ((DAY-NRLM) and Institute for What Works to Advance Gender Equality (IWWAGE)

    Source: The post is based on the article “Fourth Gender Samvaad was co-organized by Deendayal Antyodaya Yojana-National Rural Livelihoods Mission ((DAY-NRLM) and Institute for What Works to Advance Gender Equality (IWWAGE)  published in PIB on 25th September 2023

    What is the News?

    The fourth Gender Samvaad was co-organized by Deendayal Antyodaya Yojana-National Rural Livelihoods Mission (DAY-NRLM), Ministry of Rural Development and Institute for What Works to Advance Gender Equality (IWWAGE).

    What is Gender Samwaad?

    Gender Samvaad is co-organized by Deendayal Antyodaya Yojana-National Rural Livelihoods Mission (DAY-NRLM) and Institute for What Works to Advance Gender Equality (IWWAGE).

    Aim: To establish a shared platform to generate awareness on DAY-NRLM’s gender interventions across the country with a focus on hearing voices from the states and of SHG members.

    What is Deendayal Antyodaya Yojana-National Rural Livelihoods Mission (DAY-NRLM)?

    Deendayal Antyodaya Yojana – National Rural Livelihoods Mission (DAY-NRLM) was launched in 2011 by the Ministry of Rural Development.

    It aims at mobilizing about 9-10 crore rural poor households into Self Help Groups (SHGs) in a phased manner and provide them long-term support such that they diversify their livelihoods, improve their incomes and quality of life.

    Click Here to read more

    What is the Institute for What Works to Advance Gender Equality (IWWAGE)?

    IWWAGE is an initiative of LEAD, an action-oriented research centre of IFMR Society (a not for profit society registered under the Societies Act).

    Aim: To build on existing research and generate new evidence to inform and facilitate the agenda of women’s economic empowerment. 

    IWWAGE is supported by the Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation.

  • India Achieves Major Sanitation Milestone As 75% Villages Are Now ODF Plus under Swachh Bharat Mission – Grameen

    Source: The post is based on the article India Achieves Major Sanitation Milestone As 75% Villages Are Now ODF Plus under Swachh Bharat Mission – Grameen published in PIB on 25th September 2023

    What is the News?

    India has achieved a significant milestone under the Swachh Bharat Mission (Grameen) Phase II, with 75% of its villages now attaining the ODF Plus status. 

    What is Swachh Bharat Mission (Grameen) Phase II?

    Swachh Bharat Mission Grameen (SBMG) was launched in 2014.

    It is the world’s largest sanitation campaign that led to the construction of over 100 million individual household toilets over a five-year period, taking sanitation coverage from 39% in 2014 to 100% in 2019. 

    More than 6 lakh villages declared themselves Open Defecation Free (ODF) by 2nd October, 2019.

    Having achieved ODF status SBM-G Phase II was launched in 2020-21 with the objective of transforming all the villages from ODF to ODF Plus.

    An ODF Plus village is one which has sustained its Open Defecation Free (ODF) status along with implementing either solid or liquid waste management systems.

    The major components of the Phase-II of SBM-G are Sustaining Open Defecation Free Status (ODF-S), Solid (Bio-degradable) Waste Management, Plastic Waste Management (PWM), Liquid Waste Management (LWM), Faecal Sludge Management (FSM), GOBARdhan, Information Education and Communication/Behavior Change Communication (IEC/BCC) and Capacity Building.

    SBM-G Phase-II has set the ambitious target of making all villages ODF Plus by 2025. 

    What is the status of Swachh Bharat Mission (Grameen) Phase II?

    Three-fourth of the total villages in the country i.e 75% villages have achieved ODF Plus status under Phase II of the Swachh Bharat Mission (Grameen).

    The top performing States/UTs which have achieved 100% ODF Plus villages are – Andaman & Nicobar Islands, D&N Haveli, Goa, Gujarat, Himachal Pradesh, Jammu & Kashmir, Karnataka, Kerala, Ladakh, Puducherry, Sikkim, Tamil Nadu, Telangana, and Tripura. 

    Among States/UTs – Andaman & Nicobar Islands, Dadra Nagar Haveli & Daman Diu, Jammu & Kashmir and Sikkim have 100% ODF Plus Model villages.

  • Department of Fisheries is promoting Artificial Reef (AR) under PMMSY for rejuvenating coastal fisheries

    Source: The post is based on the article Department of Fisheries is promoting Artificial Reef (AR) under PMMSY for rejuvenating coastal fisheries”  published in PIB on 23rd September 2023

    What is the News?

    The Department of Fisheries has approved 732 artificial reef units for 10 coastal states. 

    This initiative falls under the “Integrated Modern Coastal Fishing Villages” program which is part of Pradhan Mantri Matsya Sampada Yojana (PMMSY).

    The projects are being implemented with the technical support of Fishery Survey of India(FSI) and ICAR-Central Marine Fisheries Research Institute(CMFRI).

    What is an Artificial Reef?

    An artificial reef is a sheltered human-built structure, placed on the seabed as a substitute for natural habitats.

    They represent innovative engineering interventions designed to restore and enhance natural habitats, boost productivity, and efficiently manage aquatic resources.

    What are the advantages of Artificial Reef?

    Fish Aggregation and Habitat: Artificial reefs, similar to their natural counterparts, serve as gathering points for fish, providing them with a habitat to thrive. These structures also mitigate wave damage along the coasts, facilitate marine ecosystem regeneration and act as carbon sinks. 

    Marine Life Support: These reefs provide a solid substrate for various marine life forms, including corals, algae, and plankton, to attach and grow. They create favorable conditions for sea ranching and serve as crucial spawning and nursery grounds for fish.

    Recreational and Ecotourism Opportunities: Artificial reefs enhance recreational fisheries and create suitable areas for activities like snorkeling and diving. This not only contributes to local tourism but also reduces conflicts over fishing grounds.

    Environmental Conservation: These structures help restrict bottom trawling in nearshore areas, aiding marine ecosystem regeneration. Small-scale fishermen also benefit from higher catch rates.

    Support for Non-Mechanized Boats: A single artificial reef unit of 300m3 is expected to support 25-30 non-mechanized boats, further boosting the livelihoods of traditional fishermen.

  • Government launches Innovative Mobile Application and Web Portal for General Crop Estimation Survey (GCES) to Revolutionize Farming Practices

    Source: The post is based on the article Government launches Innovative Mobile Application and Web Portal for General Crop Estimation Survey (GCES) to Revolutionize Farming Practices”  published in PIB on 21st September 2023

    What is the News?

    Department of Agriculture and Farmers Welfare(DA&FW) has launched the mobile application and the web portal for GCES (General Crop Estimation Survey).

    What is the General Crop Estimation Survey(GCES)?

    Estimates of crop production are obtained by multiplying the area under crop and the yield rate. 

    The yield rate estimates are based on scientifically designed crop cutting experiments conducted under the General Crop Estimation Survey (GCES). 

    What are the key features of the mobile application and the web portal for GCES (General Crop Estimation Survey)?

    Comprehensive Information: The portal and the app provide a comprehensive repository of yield estimation including village wise GCES plan and plot details where the crop cutting experiments are conducted, post harvesting crop weight and driage weight of the crop.

    Geo-referencing: Geo-referencing is one of the key features of the mobile application, which enables the primary worker to draw the boundary of the experimental plot and upload photos of the plot as well as of the crops through it.This feature will ensure transparency and accuracy of the data as well.

    What are the key challenges addressed by GCES Web Portal and Mobile Application?

    Delay in Reporting: Till date data collection, compilation and yield estimation is a completely manual process which causes delay in reporting by states. 

    – In the new process, the field data will be collected using GPS enabled mobile application and will be stored in the server which ensures on time reporting of crop statistics.

    Transparency: GPS enabled devices provide precise latitude and longitude coordinates for data collection points. This information ensures that data is linked to specific geographic locations, leaving no room for ambiguity or manipulation of data regarding where it was collected.

  • All about Bima Sugam portal, a ‘UPI moment’ for insurance sector

    Source: The post is based on the article “All about Bima Sugam portal, a ‘UPI moment’ for insurance sector”  published in Hindustan Times on 21st September 2023

    What is the News?

    Insurance Regulatory and Development Authority of India (IRDAI) has formed a steering committee to act as the apex decision-making body for the creation of its ambitious ‘Bima Sugam’ online platform.

    What is Bima Sugam?

    Bima Sugam aims to simplify the process of purchasing insurance for consumers.  

    This online platform is where customers can choose a suitable scheme from multiple options given by various companies.  

    All insurance requirements, including those for life, health, and general insurance (including motor and travel) will be met by Bima Sugam. 

    Who will own the Bima Sugam platform?

    Life insurance and general insurance companies will own a 47.5 per cent stake each, while brokers and agent bodies will own 2.5 per cent each.

    What are the benefits of the Bima Sugam platform? 

    The portal will provide the following benefits: 1) act as a centralized database 2) assist the insured/buyers in porting their respective policies based on coverage and pricing 3) give people a wide choice to pick and choose policies and view all their policies 4) reduce commission paid to intermediaries and 5) Settlement of claims and renewal of policies will also become faster as paperwork is reduced drastically, making it easier for the customers.

  • Salient features and Guidelines of PM Vishwakarma Scheme

    Source: The post is based on the article Salient features and Guidelines of PM Vishwakarma Scheme  published in PIB on 21st September 2023

    What is the News?

    The Prime Minister has launched the PM Vishwakarma Scheme.

    What is the PM Vishwakarma Scheme?

    Nodal Ministry: Ministry of Micro, Small & Medium Enterprise.

    Type: Central Sector Scheme

    Aim: To provide end-to-end support to artisans and craftspeople who work with their hands and tools. 

    Coverage: The Scheme covers artisans and craftspeople engaged in 18 trades.

    Benefits under the scheme:

    – Recognition: Recognition of artisans and craftspeople through PM Vishwakarma certificate and ID card.

    – Skill Upgradation: Basic Training of 5-7 days and Advanced Training of 15 days or more, with a stipend of Rs. 500 per day;

    – Toolkit Incentive: A toolkit incentive of upto Rs. 15,000 in the form of e-vouchers at the beginning of Basic Skill Training.

    – Credit Support: Collateral free ‘Enterprise Development Loans’ of upto Rs. 3 lakh in two tranches of Rs. 1 lakh and Rs. 2 lakh with tenures of 18 months and 30 months, respectively, at a concessional rate of interest fixed at 5%, with Government of India subvention to the extent of 8%. 

    – Beneficiaries who have completed Basic Training will be eligible to avail the first tranche of credit support of upto Rs. 1 lakh.The second loan tranche will be available to beneficiaries who have availed the 1st tranche and maintained a standard loan account and have adopted digital transactions in their business or have undergone Advanced Training.

    – Incentive for Digital Transaction: An amount of Rs 1 per digital transaction, upto maximum 100 transactions monthly will be credited to the beneficiary’s account for each digital pay-out or receipt.

    – Marketing Support: Marketing support will be provided to the artisans and craftspeople in the form of quality certification, branding, onboarding on e-commerce platforms such as GeM, advertising, publicity and other marketing activities to improve linkage to value chain.

    Recognition as entrepreneurs: The scheme will onboard the beneficiaries on Udyam Assist Platform as ‘entrepreneurs’ in the formal MSME ecosystem.

  • C-DOT and CSIR-National Physical laboratory sign agreement for ‘Development of NavIC based IST traceable Primary Reference Time Clock for Telecom Sector’

    Source: The post is based on the article C-DOT and CSIR-National Physical laboratory sign agreement for ‘Development of NavIC based IST traceable Primary Reference Time Clock for Telecom Sector”  published in PIB on 21st September 2023

    What is the News?

    Centre for Development of Telematics (C-DOT) and CSIR-National Physical laboratory (NPL) has signed an agreement for ‘Development of NavIC based IST traceable Primary Reference Time Clock (PRTC) for Telecom Sector’.

    The agreement is signed under the Telecom Technology Development Fund (TTDF) scheme.

    What is the Telecom Technology Development Fund(TTDF) scheme?

    Universal Service Obligation Fund (USOF) , a body under the Department of Telecommunications, had launched the Telecom Technology Development Fund (TTDF) Scheme in 2022.

    Aim: To fund R&D in rural-specific communication technology applications and form synergies among academia, start-ups, research institutes, and the industry to build and develop the telecom ecosystem.

    – To promote technology ownership and indigenous manufacturing, create a culture of technology co-innovation, reduce imports, boost export opportunities and create Intellectual Property.

    Eligibility: The following Indian entities are only eligible for support from this fund: 1) Domestic Company(ies) with focus on telecom R&D, Use case development 2) Start-ups / MSMEs 3) Academic institutions 4) R&D institutions, Section 8 companies with focus on telecom research and development among others.

    Technology domains: 1) 5G development under ‘India 5G Stack’ 2) 6G & Beyond technology development 3) IoT & M2M development 4) Other Telecom Technologies under various research programs 5) Entrepreneurship Cell (for early-stage Start-ups) and 5) Research Scholarship program.

  • Revolutionizing Indian Agriculture: MoA&FW Unveils Game-Changing Initiatives for Farmers

    Source: The post is based on the article Revolutionizing Indian Agriculture: MoA&FW Unveils Game-Changing Initiatives for Farmers”  published in PIB on 19th September 2023

    What is the News?

    The Union Finance Minister and Union Agriculture Minister have launched several initiatives focused on agri-credit and crop insurance.

    What are the initiatives launched by the government?

    Kisan Rin Portal:

    Kisan Rin Portal (KRP) is a collaborative effort between Ministry of Agriculture and Farmers Welfare (MoA&FW),  Department of Financial Services (DFS), Department of Animal Husbandry & Dairying (DAH&D), Department of Fisheries (DoF), RBI and NABARD.

    The portal aims to revolutionize access to credit services for farmers through the Kisan Credit Card (KCC) and help them access subsidized agriculture credit through the Modified Interest Subvention Scheme (MISS).

    The portal also serves as a central hub where farmer data, loan disbursement details, interest subvention claims, and progress in utilizing the schemes are integrated. 

    It allows for smooth coordination with banks and enables proactive policy actions, strategic guidance and improvements to make agriculture credit more effective and ensure the optimal use of interest subvention.

    WINDS Portal:

    Full Form: Weather Information Network Data Systems (WINDS) 

    Purpose: To ensure real time weather information so that farmers can take right precaution for their crops at the right time.

    The portal aims to establish a network of Automatic Weather Stations & Rain Gauges at the taluk/block and gram panchayat levels.This will help create a robust database of hyper-local weather data, supporting various agricultural services.

    KCC Ghar Ghar Abhiyaan:

    The aim of the campaign is to ensure that every farmer has unhindered access to credit facilities that drive their agricultural pursuits. 

    The campaign will begin from 1st October 2023 to 31st December 2023.

    The campaign will help in the saturation of KCC accounts among eligible PM-Kisan beneficiary farmers by connecting around 1.5 crore beneficiaries who are not yet connected to KCC scheme.

  • National Workshop on e-NAM 2.0 and Agri Marketing Reforms

    Source: The post is based on the articleNational Workshop on e-NAM 2.0 and Agri Marketing Reforms published in PIB on 19th September 2023

    What is the News?

    The Ministry of Agriculture has organized a day-long workshop on “e-NAM 2.0 and agriculture marketing reforms”.

    What is e-NAM?

    National Agriculture Market (e-NAM) is a pan-India electronic trading portal launched in 2016.

    The platform connects the current Agricultural Produce Market Committee (APMC) mandis to form a unified national market for agricultural commodities.

    The portal is managed by “Small Farmers’ Agribusiness Consortium (SFAC)”, under the aegis of the Ministry of Agriculture and Farmers Welfare.

    At present, 1,361 regulated mandis in 23 states and four Union Territories are linked with the electronic National Agriculture Market (eNAM).

    e-NAM has been able to bring competence in APMC mandi operations via: 1) technology interventions 2) accuracy in weighment via digital weighbridge and weighing scale 3) real-time online information on commodity prices 4) access to more buyers/sellers and transparency in trade (due to on-line mode of auction) resulting in competitive bidding and there by better price discovery 5) transparency in payment via multiple online payment modes and 6) better efficiency in overall mandi operations via digitalization.

    How will e-NAM 2.0 be different from current e-NAM?

    e-NAM 2.0 will be an advanced version of existing e-NAM wherein the reforms in the State Acts will be very important in the success of e-NAM 2.0.

  • Bureau of Indian Standards establishes 6467 Standard Clubs for students across nation

    Source: The post is based on the article Bureau of Indian Standards establishes 6467 Standard Clubs for students across nation published in PIB on 19th September 2023

    What is the News?

    The Bureau of Indian Standards (BIS) has announced that it has established 6467 Standard Clubs in schools and colleges across the country. 

    What are Standard Clubs?

    Launched by: Bureau of Indian Standards(BIS) in 2001

    Purpose: They are being established with an objective to sensitize young members of society about the importance of standards in improving quality of life.

    Eligibility: Standards Clubs can be formed in any educational institution in India comprising teachers and students – High & Higher Secondary schools, engineering colleges, science colleges, polytechnics, professional institutions.

    – Students of class IX and above and studying science subjects are also eligible to be part of the Clubs.

    – Consumer Organizations/Non-Government Organizations/Voluntary Organizations registered on the Consumer Engagement Portal of BIS can also facilitate the formation & functioning of above Standards Clubs in Educational Institutions other than Engineering Institutions. 

    Formation: Each Standards Club comprises a science teacher as its mentor and a minimum of 15 students as members. 

    Activities: The student members of these Standards clubs engage in a variety of activities, like: Standards writing competitions, Quiz competitions, Debates, essay writing and poster making and Exposure visits to laboratories & Industrial units and more.

    Financial assistance: The financial support for Standards Clubs in Engineering Institutions would be limited to a maximum amount of Rs 100,000/- per year, subject to the condition that at least two activities must be organized every year.

    – The financial support for Standards Clubs in institutions other than Engineering Institutions would be limited to Rs 10,000/- maximum, for each of the three activities in a year for each Standards Clubs.  

    – High and higher secondary eligible Government Schools with Standards Clubs are also entitled to receive a one-time Laboratory Grant to a maximum of Rs. 50,000/- in the form of state of the art lab equipment for upgrading their Science Lab.

    – Financial assistance of upto Rs.1,00,000 will be given to establish ‘Manak Kaksha’ in government institutions where Standards Clubs have been formed.Under this initiative one room in the school shall be renovated by providing basic amenities like smart TVs, audio video systems, proper illumination, decorating the walls etc. 

  • Indian govt launches the Kisan Rin Portal with the weather portal WIND

    Source: The post is based on the articleIndian govt launches the Kisan Rin Portal with the weather portal WIND published in Business Standard on 19th September 2023

    What is the News?

    The Finance Minister and Agriculture Minister have inaugurated the ‘Kisan Rin Portal’ and WINDS portal.

    What is Kisan Rin Portal?

    Kisan Rin Portal aims to give farmers subsidized loans under the Kisan Credit Card (KCC) scheme.

    The portal will offer a comprehensive view of farmer data, scheme utilization progress, loan disbursement specifics and interest subvention claims to increase seamless integration with banks for more effective and efficient agriculture credit.

    What is WINDS Portal?

    Full Form: Weather information Network Data Systems (WINDS) 

    Purpose: To leverage advanced weather data analytics to give stakeholders actionable insight to make informed weather decisions on agriculture.

  • SHREYAS scheme empowers thousands: over 2300 crore rupees allocated for education of SC and OBC students since 2014

    Source: The post is based on the articleSHREYAS scheme empowers thousands: over 2300 crore rupees allocated for education of SC and OBC students since 2014  published in PIB on 18th September 2023

    What is the News?

    This article talks about the sub schemes under the SHREYAS Scheme.

    What is SHREYAS Scheme?

    Nodal Ministry: Ministry of Social Justice & Empowerment

    Full Form: Scholarships for Higher Education for Young Achievers Scheme(SHREYAS)

    Sub Schemes: The scheme comprises of 4 central sector sub-schemes.These all sub-schemes are central sector schemes:

    Free Coaching Scheme for SCs and OBCs: The objective of the Scheme is to provide coaching of good quality for economically disadvantaged Scheduled Castes (SCs) and Other Backward Classes (OBCs) candidates to enable them appear in competitive and entrance examinations for obtaining appropriate jobs in Public/Private Sector as well as for securing admission in reputed technical and professional higher education institutions. 

    – The ceiling of the total family income under the scheme is 8 lakhs per annum.3500 slots are allotted per annum. 

    – The ratio of SC: OBC students is 70:30 and 30% slots are reserved for females in each category. In case of non-availability of the adequate number of candidates in SC category, the Ministry can relax this ratio. However, in no case, less than 50% SC students shall be permitted.

    Top Class Education for SCs: The Scheme aims at recognizing and promoting quality education amongst students belonging to SCs, by providing full financial support.The Scheme will cover SC students for pursuing studies beyond 12th class. 

    – The scholarship, once awarded, will continue till the completion of the course, subject to satisfactory performance of the student. 

    – The ceiling of the total family income under the scheme is 8 lakhs per annum. 

    National Overseas Scheme for SCs: The scheme provides financial assistance to the selected students from SCs (115 slots); De-notified, Nomadic and Semi-Nomadic Tribes (6 slots); landless agricultural laborers and traditional artisan categories (4 slots), for pursuing masters and Ph.D. level courses abroad.Presently, 125 slots are allotted under the scheme.

    Eligibility: Total family income including the candidate is less than Rs. 8 lakhs per annum, secured more than 60% marks in the qualifying examination, are below 35 years of age and secured admission in top 500 QS ranking foreign Institutes/ Universities.

    Benefits: The scheme provides total tuition fee, maintenance and contingency allowance, visa fee, to and fro air passage etc to the awardees.

    National Fellowship for SC Students: The scheme provides fellowship to Scheduled Castes students for pursuing higher education leading to M.Phil/ Ph.D degrees in Sciences, Humanities and Social Sciences in Indian Universities/Institutions/ Colleges recognized by University Grants Commission (UGC).

    The scheme provides for 2000 new slots per year (500 for science stream and 1500 for Humanities and Social Sciences) who have qualified the National Eligibility Test- Junior Research Fellowship (NET-JRF) of UGC and Junior Research Fellows for Science stream qualifying UGC-Council of Scientific and Industrial Research (UGC-CSIR) Joint Test.

  • Prime Minister launches ‘PM Vishwakarma’ Scheme for traditional artisans and craftspeople on occasion of Vishwakarma Jayanti

    Source: The post is based on the article “Prime Minister launches ‘PM Vishwakarma’ Scheme for traditional artisans and craftspeople on occasion of Vishwakarma Jayanti”  published in PIB on 17th September 2023

    What is the News?

    The Prime Minister has launched ‘PM Vishwakarma Scheme’ for traditional artisans and craftspeople on the occasion of Vishwakarma Jayanti.

    What is the PM Vishwakarma Scheme?

    Nodal Ministry: Ministry of Micro, Small & Medium Enterprise.

    – The Ministry of Tribal Affairs, would provide active support for implementation of the scheme for the wellbeing of the Vishwakarmas.

    Type: Central Sector Scheme

    Aim: To enhance the accessibility and quality of products and services offered by traditional artisans and craftsmen.

    Coverage: The scheme will provide support to artisans and craftspeople in rural and urban areas across India.Initially, 18 traditional trades will be covered.

    Benefits under the scheme: Under the scheme, the Vishwakarma workers will be registered for free through Common Services Centres using the biometric-based PM Vishwakarma portal.

    – They will then be provided recognition through the PM Vishwakarma certificate and ID card, given skill upgradation involving basic and advanced training, a toolkit incentive of ₹15,000, collateral-free credit support up to ₹1 lakh (first tranche) and ₹2 lakh (second tranche) at a concessional interest rate of 5%, incentive for digital transactions and marketing support.

    What does Vishwakarma means?

    Vishwakarma, in Hindu mythology, is seen as the architect of the gods and was the divine carpenter and master craftsman who fashioned the weapons of the gods and built their cities and chariots.

    Some legends say he was the architect of the mythical city Lanka mentioned in the Hindu epic Ramayana and is also said to have made the great image of Jagannatha at Puri in Odisha.He is considered the patron deity of workers, artisans, and artists.

  • Govt launches Skill India Digital for transforming skill, education, entrepreneurship landscape of India

    Source: The post is based on the article “Govt launches Skill India Digital for transforming skill, education, entrepreneurship landscape of India”  published in Indian Express on 15th September 2023

    What is the News?

    The Ministry of Skill Development has launched the Skill India Digital (SID) platform.

    What is Skill India Digital (SID) Platform?

    Skill India Digital(SID) Platform is a Digital Public Infrastructure(DPI) for skilling, education, employment and entrepreneurship ecosystem of India.

    It is a comprehensive digital platform aimed at synergizing and transforming the skills, education, employment, and entrepreneurship landscape of India.

    Built by: National Skill Development Corporation (NSDC) in collaboration with multiple industry players.

    Part of: The platform is part of the World Bank-assisted Skill Acquisition and Knowledge Awareness for Livelihood Promotion (SANKALP) programme

    Key Features of the platform:

    The platform acts as a comprehensive information gateway for government skilling and entrepreneurship initiatives.

    It encompasses training programs from central and state governments, creating a centralized hub for skill development initiatives.

    All courses compliant with the National Skilling Qualification Framework (NSQF) will also be accessible on the platform. 

    Additionally, the platform integrates with other government portals such as the UDYAM portal for micro and small enterprises and the Atma Nirbhar Skilled Employee Employer Mapping (ASEEM) portal.

    The platform also supports multiple Indian languages and ensures secure access with Aadhaar-based eKYC.

    It adopts a mobile-first approach, making learning accessible through handheld devices.

    It showcases individuals’ skills and qualifications through Digitally Verified Credentials, offering secure and tamper-proof verification.

    Digital CVs with personalized QR codes allow potential employers or partners to easily access a candidate’s portfolio, including skills, qualifications, experiences and achievements.

  • Gati Shakti to help speedup auction of critical minerals

    Source: The post is based on the article “Gati Shakti to help speedup auction of critical minerals”  published in Livemint on 16th September 2023

    What is the News?

    PM Gati Shakti National Master Plan is helping in expediting the auction of critical minerals.

    What is PM Gati Shakti?

    PM Gati Shakti seeks to bring all relevant ministries and departments of the central government together, and create a digital platform for comprehensive and integrated project planning. 

    This includes dynamic mapping of all infrastructure projects with real-time updates. 

    The data from all individual ministries will be integrated into a single platform, facilitating planning, review, and monitoring.

    How is PM Gati Shakti helping in expediting the auction of critical minerals?

    The central government has authorized states to use their own records and the online resources of PM Gati Shakti National Master Plan for defining mining areas. 

    The revised land demarcation and classification rules have helped identify well-defined mining zones and streamline the auction process.

    For instance, amendments made in September 2023 to the Mineral (Auction) Rules, 2015, allow state governments to use land details available on the PM Gati Shakti-National Master Plan for Multi-modal Connectivity platform or state government land record portals for land classification.

    This change is expected to expedite the land demarcation and classification making it faster to prepare blocks for auctions.

    Previously, the 2015 mineral auction regulations required offline identification and demarcation of mineral blocks using technology like total station and differential global positioning system (DGPS), which caused delays.Hence, this new approach using online records is expected to simplify and expedite the process.

  • Department of Fisheries organizes event on 3rd Anniversary of Pradhan Mantri Matsya Sampada Yojana in Indore

    Source: The post is based on the articleDepartment of Fisheries organizes event on 3rd Anniversary of Pradhan Mantri Matsya Sampada Yojana in Indore”  published in The Hindu on 16th September 2023

    What is the News?

    The Union Minister for Fisheries, Animal Husbandry & Dairying has launched Matsya Sampada Jagrukta Abhiyan on the occasion of  completion of three successful years of implementation of Pradhan Mantri Matasya Sampada Yojna(PMMSY).

    What is Pradhan Mantri Matasya Sampada Yojna(PMMSY)?

    Pradhan Mantri Matsya Sampada Yojana is a scheme to bring about the Blue Revolution through sustainable and responsible development of the fisheries sector in India.

    Objectives of the scheme: Harnessing of fisheries potential in a sustainable, responsible, inclusive and equitable manner

    – Enhancing fish production and productivity through expansion, intensification, diversification and productive utilization of land and water.

    – Modernizing and strengthening of the value chain – post-harvest management and quality improvement.

    – Doubling fishers and fish farmers incomes and generation of employment.

    – Enhancing contribution to Agriculture GVA and exports.

    – Social, physical and economic security for fishers and fish farmers.

    – Robust fisheries management and regulatory framework.

    Duration of the scheme: The scheme is being implemented in all States and UTs for a period of 5 years from FY 2020-21 to FY 2024-25. 

    Click here to read more 

    What is Matsya Sampada Jagrukta Abhiyan?

    Organized by: Department of Fisheries.

    Aim: To disseminate information and knowledge about 9 Years of achievements of the Government of India by highlighting success stories of the beneficiaries and reaching out to 2.8 crore fish farmers and 3477 coastal villages.

    What are the success stories of Pradhan Mantri Matasya Sampada Yojna(PMMSY)?

    Shri F.Laldingliana from Mizoram switched to aquaculture when he merely earned Rs 30,000 per year and now practices fisheries on his 2 ha land with 19 ponds.

    Smt. R. Murugeswari from Tamil Nadu practices seaweed cultivation and the subsidy received under PMMSY helped her with funds for maintenance of rafts, meticulous net cleaning.

  • Union Minister for Jal Shakti Jointly Launches Swachhata Hi Seva 2023 Campaign

    Source: The post is based on the articleUnion Minister for Jal Shakti Jointly Launches Swachhata Hi Seva 2023 Campaign”  published in PIB on 15th September 2023

    What is the News?

    Union Minister for Jal Shakti and Union Minister of Housing and Urban Affairs jointly launched the pan-India Swachhata Pakhwada – Swachhata Hi Seva (SHS) 2023 campaign.

    What is the Swachhata Hi Seva (SHS) campaign?

    Swachhata Hi Seva (SHS) campaign is being celebrated from 15th September to 2nd October this year under the joint aegis of Department of Drinking Water and Sanitation, Ministry of Jal Shakti and Ministry of Housing and Urban Affairs.

    Focus: The campaign will focus on achieving a visibly higher order of cleanliness across local bodies through the spirit of voluntarism and shramdaan as well as on the welfare of SafaiMitras.

    – All Ministries and Departments will be organizing swachhata drives across offices, public places, heritage sites, river fronts in both rural and urban areas.

    Theme for 2023: Garbage Free India.

    What are the activities that will be organized under SHS- 2023?

    Swachhata Hi Seva – Fortnight long Cleanliness Drives: As a part of this, all Government of India Ministries, PSUs, State Govts. and local bodies will be organizing massive cleanliness drives across various locations.

    Indian Swachhata League 2.0: It aims to mobilize youth groups at scale to take sustained ownership for swachhata across beaches, hills and tourist spots. 

    – The swachhata league will act as a catalyst for triggering action by the youth of the city towards the vision of garbage free cities under the Swachh Bharat Mission.

    SafaiMitra Suraksha Shivir: These will be organized by various cities across the nation.

    – These Shivirs (camps) are aimed at saturating welfare schemes for sanitation workers and their dependents and to improve their well-being and quality of life. 

    – The objective of the shivir is to target all sanitation workers in Solid Waste Management (SWM) & Used Water Management (UWM). 

    – The key activities will focus on mass awareness, preventive health checkups, yoga shivirs and extending entitlement of various welfare benefits of central & State Schemes in convergence with various ministries.

  • Union Minister launches Unified Portal www.upag.gov.in for Agricultural Statistics

    Source: The post is based on the article Union Minister launches Unified Portal www.upag.gov.in for Agricultural Statistics”  published in PIB on 15th September 2023

    What is the News?

    Member of NITI Aayog has officially launched Unified Portal for Agricultural Statistics(UPAg Portal).

    What is UPAg Portal?

    UPAg stands for Unified Portal for Agricultural Statistics (UPAg).

    Purpose: It is an advanced agricultural data management platform designed to generate crop estimates and integrate with other systems generating Agriculture Statistics such as Price, Trade, Procurement, Stock etc. 

    – The portal serves as a centralized hub for near real time information on crop production, market trends, pricing, and other vital agricultural data. 

    Developed by: Department of Agriculture and Farmers Welfare.

    Key Features of the portal:

    – Data Standardization: The portal standardizes data on prices, production, area, yield, and trade, making it accessible in one location, eliminating the need to compile data from multiple sources.

    – Data Analysis: UPAg Portal will perform advanced analytics, offering insights such as production trends, trade correlations, and consumption patterns, aiding policymakers in making informed decisions.

    – Granular Production Estimates: The portal will generate granular production estimates with increased frequency, enhancing the government’s ability to respond to agricultural crises swiftly.

    – Commodity Profile Reports: Commodity profile reports will be produced using algorithms, minimizing subjectivity and providing users with comprehensive insights.

    – Plug and Play: Users will have the flexibility to use the portal’s data to prepare their own reports, promoting data-driven decision-making.

    What are the key issues addressed by UPAg Portal?

    Lack of Standardized Data: Currently, agricultural data is scattered across various sources and often presented in different formats and units.UPAg Portal aims to consolidate this data into a standardized format, making it easily accessible and understandable for users.

    Lack of Verified Data: Reliable data is crucial for accurate policy decisions.UPAg Portal ensures that data from sources like Agmarknet is vetted and updated in a timely manner, providing policymakers with accurate information on agricultural prices.

    Dispersed Data: To form a comprehensive view of any crop, multiple variables need to be considered, including production, trade, and prices.UPAg Portal brings together data from various sources, providing a holistic assessment of agricultural commodities.

    Different Frequency Variables: Data updates at different times, causing delays and inefficiencies. UPAg Portal offers real-time connectivity with data sources, reducing the time and effort required for monitoring and analysis.

  • On the occasion of Vishwakarma Jayanti, PM to launch ‘PM Vishwakarma’ for traditional artisans and craftspeople

    Source: The post is based on the article On the occasion of Vishwakarma Jayanti, PM to launch ‘PM Vishwakarma’ for traditional artisans and craftspeople”  published in PIB on 15th September 2023

    What is the News?

    On the occasion of Vishwakarma Jayanti, the Prime Minister will launch a new scheme named “PM Vishwakarma”.

    What is PM Vishwakarma?

    Type: Central Sector Scheme

    Aim: To strengthen and nurture the Guru-Shishya parampara or family-based practice of traditional skills by artisans and craftspeople working with their hands and tools.

    – To improve the quality as well as the reach of products and services of artisans and craftspeople and to ensure that they are integrated with the domestic and global value chains.

    Coverage: The scheme will provide support to artisans and craftspeople of rural and urban areas across India. 

    – Eighteen traditional crafts will be covered under PM Vishwakarma.These include (i) Carpenter; (ii) Boat Maker; (iii) Armourer; (iv) Blacksmith ; (v) Hammer and Tool Kit Maker; (vi) Locksmith; (vii) Goldsmith; (viii) Potter; (ix) Sculptor, Stone breaker; (x) Cobbler (Shoesmith/ Footwear artisan); (xi) Mason (Rajmistri); (xii) Basket/Mat/Broom Maker/Coir Weaver; (xiii) Doll & Toy Maker (Traditional); (xiv) Barber; (xv) Garland maker; (xvi) Washerman; (xvii) Tailor; and (xviii) Fishing Net Maker.

    Benefits under the scheme: Under the scheme, the Vishwakarmas will be registered free of charge through Common Services Centres using biometric based PM Vishwakarma portal. 

    – They will be provided 1) recognition through PM Vishwakarma certificate and ID card 2) skill upgradation involving basic and advanced training 3) toolkit incentive of ₹15,000 4) collateral-free credit support up to ₹1 lakh (first tranche) and ₹2 lakh (second tranche) at a concessional interest rate of 5%, incentive for digital transactions and marketing support.

  • 55th Network Planning Group Meeting under PM GatiShakti recommends six infrastructure projects

    Source: The post is based on the article 55th Network Planning Group Meeting under PM GatiShakti recommends six infrastructure projects”  published in PIB on 14th September 2023

    What is the News?

    The 55th Network Planning Group (NPG) under PM Gati Shakti has recommended several projects.

    What are the projects recommended by the Network Planning Group(NPG)?

    Dhubri bridge – Goeragre road project: It is located in State of Meghalaya and shall connect under-construction 4-lane Dhubri-Phulbari bridge connecting East-West Road Corridor. 

    – This is a part of the Government initiative to connect the North-Eastern part of the country with easy connectivity. 

    – This project will not only benefit the agro-products transportation but also facilitate international trade at the India-Bangladesh border region.

    Kharagpur- Moregram road project: It is part of Kharagpur Siliguri Road Corridor.The project shall reduce the overall distance between Kharagpur to Siliguri by 112 km and travel time by upto 7 hrs. 

    – The project will not only benefit aspirational districts enroute but also Left-Wing Extremism (LWE) affected districts of Paschim Medinipur. 

    – The project will help in overall socio-economic upliftment of the region.The road will also benefit international trade via Haldia/Kolkata Port.

    Railway Line Projects: ​​Three railway line projects have been approved.One Greenfield railway line project alignment passes through West Bengal, Odisha and Jharkhand while another Greenfield railway line is located in Odisha which will be an alternate and shorter alignment to existing railway line and shall help in decongestion of existing track.The third railway line is located in Gujarat State. 

    – These railway lines are expected to benefit the Steel, Cement and Power industries by easing the transportation of Coal, Limestone, Iron Ore and finished products, such as Iron & Steel, Cement etc apart from benefitting the passenger transportation.

  • India marks one year of launch of National Logistics Policy

    Source: The post is based on the article India marks one year of launch of National Logistics Policy”  published in PIB on 14th September 2023

    What is the News?

    India has marked one year of the National Logistics Policy on September 17, 2023.

    This policy complements the PM GatiShakti National Master Plan (NMP) ,

    What is the National Logistics Policy?

    Aim: To drive economic growth and business competitiveness of the country through an integrated, seamless, efficient, reliable, green, sustainable and cost-effective logistics network by leveraging best in class technology, processes and skilled manpower.

    Targets: (1) Reduce cost of logistics in India (2) improve the Logistics Performance Index ranking – endeavor is to be among top 25 countries by 2030 and (3) create data driven decision support mechanism for an efficient logistics ecosystem.

    Action Plan: To achieve these targets, a Comprehensive Logistics Action Plan (CLAP) was launched covering eight action areas.

    – These eight areas include: (1) Integrated Digital Logistics Systems; (2) Standardization of Physical Assets and Benchmarking of Service Quality Standards; (3) Logistics Human Resource Development and Capacity Building; (4) State engagement; (5) EXIM Logistics; (6) Services Improvement Framework; (7) Sectoral Plans for Efficient Logistics (SPEL) and (8) Facilitation of Development of Logistics Parks.

    What is the progress on the implementation of the National Logistics Policy?

    Unified Logistics Interface Platform(ULIP)

    Logistics Data Bank (LDB): It is an application that tracks and traces EXIM cargo.It brings greater predictability, transparency and reliability, logistics cost will come down and wastages in supply chain will reduce.

    Logistics Performance Index 2023

    State Logistics Policy: To bring holistic focus on ‘logistics’ in public policy at State level, States/UTs are developing State Logistics Plans (SLPs) aligned with NLP.So far, 22 States have notified their respective State Logistics policies.

  • Cabinet approves eCourts Phase III for 4 years

    Source: The post is based on the article “Cabinet approves eCourts Phase III for 4 years published in PIB on 14th September 2023

    What is the News?

    The Union Cabinet has approved the eCourts Project Phase III.

    What is eCourts Project?

    Click Here to read

    Phase I of the project was implemented during 2011-2015. 

    Phase II of the project started in 2015 under which 18,735 District & Subordinate courts have been computerized so far.

    What is the aim of eCourts Project Phase III?

    Type: Central Sector Scheme 

    Aim: To create a unified technology platform for the judiciary which will provide a seamless and paperless interface between courts, litigants, and other stakeholders.

    Duration: Four Years (2023 onwards) 

    Key Features of the project: Phase 3 of the eCourts project will see:

    Digitisation of entire court records, both legacy and pending cases.

    A tripartite agreement will be signed between State governments, the Centre and the 25 High Courts under which maintenance, upkeep, and replacement of equipment will be the responsibility of respective States while the funds and the required hardware will be provided by the Centre.

    Establishment and expanding the scope of virtual courts for hearing of cases by creating a robust digital infrastructure.

    Integration of duty holders such as courts, jails, police stations, and forensic laboratories with the InterOperable Criminal Justice System (ICJS).

    Add Artificial Intelligence into the judicial system and introduce features like Optical Character Recognition (OCR) for analysis of case pendency and forecasting future litigation as well.

    Citizens who do not have access to technology can access judicial services from eSewa Kendras, thus bridging the digital divide.

    What are the expected benefits of eCourts Project Phase III?

    Judicial processes will become more environment-friendly by minimizing paper-based filings and reducing the physical movement of documents.

    Virtual participation in the court proceedings will help in reducing costs associated with court proceedings such as travel expenses for witnesses, judges, and other stakeholders.

    Expansion of eFiling will reduce the time and effort required to file documents thereby minimizing human errors.

    Enhanced accuracy and transparency in court proceedings

  • President of India to virtually launch Ayushman Bhav Campaign

    Source: The post is based on the article President of India to virtually launch Ayushman Bhav Campaign”  published in PIB on 12th September 2023

    What is the News?

    The President of India will launch the ‘Ayushman Bhav’ campaign.

    What is the Ayushman Bhav campaign?

    Nodal Ministry: Ministry of Health and Family Welfare.

    Purpose: It is a comprehensive nationwide healthcare initiative that aims to extend healthcare coverage to every village and town transcending geographical barriers and ensuring that no one is left behind.

    Collaboration between: The campaign is a collaborative effort involving gram panchayats, the Department of Health, various government departments, and local elected bodies in both rural and urban areas. 

    Components: The campaign aims to extend comprehensive coverage of health services through its three components:

    Ayushman Apke Dwar 3.0: This initiative aims to provide Ayushman cards to remaining eligible beneficiaries enrolled under the PM-JAY scheme, ensuring that more individuals have access to essential health services.

    Ayushman Melas at HWCs and CHCs: These Melas at Ayushman Bharat- HWCs and CHCs will facilitate the creation of ABHA IDs (Health IDs) and issuance of Ayushman Bharat Cards. They will also offer early diagnosis, comprehensive primary health care services, tele consultation with specialists, and appropriate referrals.

    – Ayushman Sabhas: These gatherings in every village and Panchayat will play a pivotal role in distributing Ayushman cards, generating ABHA IDs, and raising awareness about vital health schemes and disease conditions such as non-communicable diseases, tuberculosis (Nikshay Mitra), sickle cell disease as well as blood donation and organ donation drives.

    Recognition: Panchayats that successfully extend comprehensive coverage of health services will earn the prestigious title of ‘Ayushman Gram Panchayat’ or ‘Ayushman Urban Ward,’ symbolizing their dedication to equitable healthcare provision.

    Significance: Ayushman Bhav campaign is aligned with the vision of creating ‘Healthy Villages’ and ‘Healthy Gram Panchayats,’ laying the foundation for achieving Universal Health Coverage in the country. 

  • Centre notifies third phase of mandatory hallmarking from September 8, 2023

    Source: The post is based on the articleCentre notifies third phase of mandatory hallmarking from September 8, 2023 published in PIB on 9th September 2023

    What is the News?

    The third phase of the mandatory hallmarking vide Hallmarking of Gold Jewellery and Gold Artefacts (Third Amendment) Order, 2023 comes into force from September 8, 2023.

    The third phase will cover an additional 55 new districts under the mandatory hallmarking system.

    What is Hallmarking?

    Hallmarking is the accurate determination and official recording of the proportionate content of precious metal in precious metal articles. 

    Hallmarks are thus official marks used in many countries as a guarantee of purity or fineness of precious metal articles. 

    The principle objectives of the Hallmarking Scheme are to protect the public against adulteration and to obligate manufacturers to maintain legal standards of fineness. 

    In India, at present two precious metals namely gold and silver have been brought under the purview of Hallmarking.

    What is the Hallmarking scheme?

    Under the Hallmarking scheme of Bureau of Indian Standards(BIS), Jewellers are registered for selling hallmarked jewellery and recognised testing and hallmarking centers.

    Aim: To protect consumers against victimization due to irregular gold or silver quality, develop India as a leading gold market center in the World and develop export competitiveness.

    Mandatory Hallmarking of Gold Jewellery:

    Mandatory Hallmarking of Gold Jewellery has come into force from June,2021. 

    In the first phase, mandatory hallmarking was implemented in 256 districts of the country with effect from 23 June 2021 and in the second phase additional 32 districts were covered.

  • India showcases PM Gatishakti National Master Plan at Asian Development Bank’s 2023 Regional Cooperation and Integration Conference

    Source: The post is based on the article “India showcases PM Gatishakti National Master Plan at Asian Development Bank’s 2023 Regional Cooperation and Integration Conference published in PIB on 7th September 2023

    What is the News?

    India showcased PM Gatishakti National Master Plan at the ‘2023 Regional Cooperation and Integration Conference: Strengthening Regional Cooperation and Integration through Economic Corridor Development (ECD)’.

    The conference was organized by Asian Development Bank (ADB) at Tbilisi, Georgia. 

    What is PM Gati Shakti?

    Launched in: October 2021

    Aims: 1) Establish synergies among different ministries during the planning stage itself 2) Align timelines of various projects through efficient planning 3) Promote standardization of the designs for efficient project approval and 4) Enable standardized procedures by all the agencies to reduce project delays.

    Click Here to read

    What is PM Gati Shakti National Master Plan?

    Source: PIB

    PM Gati Shakti National Master Plan was developed by Bhaskaracharya National Institute for Space Applications and Geo-informatics(BISAG).

    It is a technology backed infrastructure development platform with GIS based data layers of infrastructure, geographic features and demography, and various decision support systems.

    The platform enables integrated planning, synchronized implementation, and project monitoring. 

    The platform aims at enhancing industrial productivity and helping the country achieve its green logistics and clean energy goals by enormously boosting the multi-modal connectivity across highways, railways, ports, airports, logistics infrastructure, mass urban transportation and inland waterways. 

    The NMP also has customized decision making and planning tools for functionalities of adding project/data; measure proximity; identification of Go/No Go Area; obtaining NOC from different departments, etc.

  • Indian Railways’ Gati Shakti Vishwavidyalaya (GSV) Vadodara and Airbus sign Memorandum of Understanding (MoU) for aerospace teaching and research

    Source: The post is based on the article Indian Railways’ Gati Shakti Vishwavidyalaya (GSV) Vadodara and Airbus sign Memorandum of Understanding (MoU) for aerospace teaching and researchpublished in PIB on 8th September 2023

    What is the News?

    Indian Railways Gati Shakti Vishwavidyalaya (GSV) Vadodara and Airbus have entered into collaboration to significantly strengthen the Indian aviation sector.

    The partnership will enable co-development and co-delivery of sector-relevant skilling courses and programs for regular students and working professionals, joint research and industry experiences for faculty, internships and placements for students and scholarship programs.

    It is expected that 15000 students are likely to be placed in Airbus India operations.

    What is Gati Shakti Vishwavidyalaya(GSV)?

    Gati Shakti Vishwavidyalaya(GSV) is a Central University established through an Act of Parliament in 2022.

    It subsumes the previously-existing National Rail and Transportation Institute (NRTI).

    Mandate: To create best in class manpower and talent for the entire transportation and logistics sectors.

    Sponsored by: Ministry of Railways, Govt. of India.

    Chancellor: Union Minister of  Railways.

    Located in: Vadodara, Gujarat.

    Significance:  GSV is a “first of its kind” university aiming to fulfill the mandate of the National Developmental Plans (PM Gati Shakti National Master Plan 2021 and National Logistics Policy 2022) across railways, shipping, ports, highways , roads, waterways and aviation etc.

    What is Airbus?

    Airbus is the world’s largest manufacturer of commercial aircraft and a leading producer of helicopters, defence and space equipment. 

    Airbus and Tata had recently announced a partnership to design, innovate, make, manufacture and develop in India C295 aircraft facility at Vadodara (Gujarat). 

  • Union Minister launches the Malaviya Mission – Teachers Training Programme by University Grants Commission

    Source: The post is based on the article “Union Minister launches the Malaviya Mission – Teachers Training Programme by University Grants Commission” published in PIB on 6th September 2023

    What is the News?

    The Union Minister for Education has launched the Malaviya Mission.

    What is the Malaviya Mission?

    Malaviya Mission is a Teachers Training Programme by the University Grants Commission.

    Aim: To provide tailored training programmes for teachers and to improve the capacity building of faculty members in higher educational institutions.

    – To improve the quality of teachers’ training, build leadership skills in teachers and help realize the goals of National Education Policy (NEP).

    Features: The mission will ensure continuous professional development and help in building capacities of 15 lakh teachers of HEIs through 111 Malaviya Mission centers (formerly known as Human Resource Development Centers (HRDCs))

    – The capacity building under the Mission will be mapped to the credit framework to ensure career progression pathways for educators.

    Themes: The themes identified for course curriculum for Capacity building of Faculty Members in HEIs include: Multidisciplinary Education, Indian Knowledge Systems (IKS), Academic Leadership, Research and Development, Skill Development, Student Diversity among others.

    – The three main themes that were discussed during India’s G20 Presidency: deployment of technology in the use of education, achieving sustainable development goals and women-led development are also to be incorporated in the Teachers Training Programmes. 

  • Cabinet approves the Scheme titled Viability Gap Funding for development of Battery Energy Storage Systems(BESS)

    Source: The post is based on the article Cabinet approves the Scheme titled Viability Gap Funding for development of Battery Energy Storage Systems(BESS)published in PIB on 6th September 2023

    What is the News?

    The Union Cabinet approves the Scheme for Viability Gap Funding (VGF) for development of Battery Energy Storage Systems (BESS).

    What are Battery Energy Storage Systems (BESS)?

    Battery storage or battery energy storage systems (BESS) are devices that enable energy from renewables, like solar and wind, to be stored and then released when the power is needed most.

    India needs to develop BESS for making round-the-clock renewable energy supply possible.

    What is Viability Gap Funding(VGF)?

    Viability Gap Finance means a grant to support projects that are economically justified but not financially viable.

    Viability Gap Funding is provided as a grant one-time or deferred with the objective of making a project commercially viable. 

    What is the Scheme for Viability Gap Funding (VGF) for development of Battery Energy Storage Systems (BESS)?

    Aim: To harness the potential of renewable energy sources such as solar and wind power with the aim to provide clean, reliable, and affordable electricity to the citizens.

    Target: The scheme envisages development of 4,000 MWh of BESS projects by 2030-31.

    Financial support: Up to 40% of the capital cost will be supported in the form of Viability Gap Funding (VGF).The entire viability gap funding (VGF) will be borne by the Central Government.

    – The VGF shall be disbursed in 5 tranches linked with the various stages of implementation of BESS projects.

    – To ensure that the benefits of the scheme reach the consumers, a minimum of 85% of the BESS project capacity will be made available to Distribution Companies (Discoms).

    Significance: The scheme is in sync with India’s ambition to meet its 50% of energy requirements through renewable energy and non-fossil energy sources by 2030 and also help reduce carbon emission.

    – Note: Solar energy has increased from 2.6 GW in 2014 to 71 GW at present while wind energy has increased from 21 GW (in 2014) to 40 GW.

    India is meeting its 25% of energy demand from renewable energy, including from large hydro plants.

  • ‘Green Hydrogen Pilots in India’ Conference held in the run-up to G20 Summit

    Source: The post is based on the article Green Hydrogen Pilots in India Conference held in the run-up to G20 Summitpublished in PIB on 6th September 2023

    What is the News?

    “Green Hydrogen Pilots in India” conference was held in New Delhi.

    What is the Green Hydrogen Pilots in India conference?

    Hosted by: NTPC Limited 

    Purpose: The conference showcased various Green Hydrogen Pilots being implemented by both public and private sector companies of India.

    What are the key highlights from the conference?

    India’s commitment to green hydrogen sets it apart from countries using natural gas-based hydrogen with higher emissions.India aims to be an influential exporter and a leader in the green hydrogen approach.

    India’s carbon dioxide contribution is relatively low compared to its population, reflecting its dedication to environmental concerns.The shift toward green hydrogen aligns with the goals of energy independence and environmental responsibility.

    India intends to become a refueling destination for green ships by providing affordable green hydrogen or green ammonia.Collaboration with the Ministry of Shipping is in progress.

    The National Green Hydrogen Mission’s pilot projects are the driving force behind innovation and experimentation.They target sectors traditionally reliant on fossil fuels.

    The R&D roadmap for the National Green Hydrogen Mission is nearly finalized and will be released soon.It outlines research areas needed for green hydrogen development.

    Public and private sectors are also implementing several pilot projects in green hydrogen, contributing to the growth of the green hydrogen ecosystem.

  • Jal Jeevan Mission Achieves Milestone of 13 Crore Rural Households Tap Connections

    Source: The post is based on the article “Jal Jeevan Mission Achieves Milestone of 13 Crore Rural Households Tap Connectionspublished in PIB on 6th September 2023

    What is the News?

    The Jal Jeevan Mission (JJM) has achieved another milestone of providing tap water connections to 13 Crore rural households. 

    What is the Jal Jeevan Mission (JJM)?

    Click Here to read

    What is the progress made under Jal Jeevan Mission (JJM)?

    Jal Jeevan Mission (JJM) has achieved the milestone of providing tap water connections to 130 million rural households.

    The rural tap connection coverage has increased from 32.3 million households at the start of the mission in 2019 to 130 million in just four years.

    Currently, Goa, Telangana, Haryana, Gujarat, Punjab, Himachal Pradesh, Puducherry, Dadra and Nagar Haveli and Daman and Diu and Andaman and Nicobar Islands have reported 100% coverage.

    Every second, one tap water connection is installed, thus changing the country’s rural landscape.Since January 1,2023 around 87,500 tap connections have been provided every day.

    Tap water supply has been provided to 915,000 (88.73%) schools, and 952,000 (84.69%) anganwadi centers in the country.

    The mission has also successfully resolved the issue of Arsenic and Fluoride contamination in drinking water sources providing safe drinking water in affected habitations.

  • Centre signs MoU with Adobe to train children in classroom

    Source: The post is based on the article “Centre signs MoU with Adobe to train children in classroom” published in The Hindu on 6th September 2023

    What is the News?

    The Union Ministry of Education has partnered with Adobe, a global software company, to promote creative expression in classrooms using Adobe Express.

    What is Adobe Express?

    Adobe Express is an AI-first, all-in-one, quick and easy content creation app with generative AI capabilities, that allows users to create content like posters, animated videos, web pages, PDFs and more.

    What is the purpose of the partnership between the Union Ministry of Education and Adobe?

    Aim: To provide training and certification in creativity and digital literacy to about 20 million students and five lakh teachers by 2027 using Adobe Express-based curriculum. 

    Under the programme, Adobe will provide schools across the country with free access to Adobe Express Premium and professional development of educators.

    – Curriculum, training and certification based on Adobe Express tools and capabilities will be rolled out to empower students and educators with topics covering creativity, generative AI, design, animation, video and other emerging technologies.

    – Educators will receive Adobe Creative Educators certification upon completion of training. 

    Significance: The initiative will help in empowering students with the tools and resources to develop future-ready skills on creativity, critical thinking, communication and collaboration, and empower educators with critical skills required to inspire creative classrooms.

  • Union Education Minister launches 3-year partnership with Meta, Education to Entrepreneurship: Empowering a generation of students, educators and entrepreneurs

    Source: The post is based on the articleUnion Education Minister launches 3-year partnership with Meta, Education to Entrepreneurship: Empowering a generation of students, educators and entrepreneurs”  published in PIB on 4th September 2023

    What is the News?

    The Union Minister of Education has launched ‘Education to Entrepreneurship’ partnership with Meta to empower India’s youth.

    What is an “Education to Entrepreneurship” Partnership?

    Education to Entrepreneurship Initiative is a collaboration between the Ministry of Education, the Ministry of Skill Development & Entrepreneurship and Meta (formerly Facebook).

    Aim: To bring digital skilling to the grassroots level.This will equip India’s talent pool with futuristic technologies, fostering a new generation of problem solvers and entrepreneurs. 

    – For instance, the partnership will help in motivating young individuals to turn their educational groundwork into flourishing enterprises.

    Duration of the Partnership: 3 Years

    As part of this initiative, Meta in partnership with the National Institute for Entrepreneurship and Small Business Development (NIESBUD) will provide digital marketing skills training to 5 lakh entrepreneurs over the next three years. 

    – This training will be conducted in seven regional languages, benefiting both budding and existing entrepreneurs. 

    – To make this training accessible to a broad audience, Meta will utilize its platforms, including Facebook, WhatsApp, and Instagram.

  • The Pradhan Mantri Dakshata Aur Kushalata Sampanna Hitgrahi(PM-DAKSH) Yojana

     


    Source:
    The post is based on the article The Pradhan Mantri Dakshata Aur Kushalata Sampanna Hitgrahi(PM-DAKSH) Yojana”  published in PIB on 4th September 2023

    What is the News?

    A total of over 1 lakh beneficiaries have been trained under PM-DAKSH since the last three years of its implementation from 2020-21 to 2022-23.

    What is Pradhan Mantri Dakshata Aur Kushalata Sampanna Hitgrahi(PM-DAKSH) Yojana?

    Launched in: 2020-21

    Nodal Ministry: Ministry of Social Justice & Empowerment (MoSJ&E)

    Type: Central Sector Scheme

    Aim: To enhance competency level of the target groups to make them employable both in self- employment and wage-employment for their socio-economic development. 

    Target groups under this scheme are: SCs, OBCs, EBCs, DNTs, Safai Karamcharis including waste pickers etc.

    Eligibility: The age criterion for the scheme is between 18-45 years.

    – There is no income limit for SCs, SafaiKaramcharis including waste picker and DNT.

    – The annual family income should be below Rs.3 lakh for OBCs and for EBCs (Economically Backward Classes), the annual family income should be below Rs.1 lakh.

    Skilling Development under the scheme: There are four types of skill development training programmes under PM-DAKSH Yojana viz; (i) Up-skilling/Reskilling, (ii) Short Term Training Programmes, (iii) Long Term Training Programmes and (iv) Entrepreneurship Development Programme.

    Benefits for Trainees: The Cost of the training to trainees is free of cost. 

    – The stipend under this scheme is Rs.1,500/- per month to SCs and Safai Karamcharis and  Rs.1,000/- per month to OBCs/EBCs/DNTs for non-residential Short Term and Long Term training courses.

    – The wage compensation of Rs.2500/- per candidate is given to SCs/OBCs/EBCs/DNTs candidates for Upskilling/Reskilling programme. 

    – Wage compensation Rs.500/- per candidate is given to Safai Karamcharis candidates for Upskilling programme.

  • ASI’s “Adopt a Heritage 2.0 programme” Indian Heritage app launched


    Source:
    The post is based on the article ASI’s “Adopt a Heritage 2.0 programme” Indian Heritage app launched ”  published in PIB on 4th September 2023

    What is the News?

    The Archaeological Survey of India (ASI) has launched the “Adopt a Heritage 2.0” programme and Indian Heritage app.

    What is Adopt a Heritage Programme?

    Adopt a Heritage Programme was launched in 2017 under the Ministry of Tourism in collaboration with the ASI.

    Under this programme, corporate stakeholders were invited to adopt from over 3,000 protected monuments spread across the country.

    What is Adopt a Heritage 2.0 Programme?

    ‘Adopt a Heritage 2.0’, is the upgraded version of ‘Adopt a Heritage’ programme. 

    The programme encourages corporate stakeholders to utilize their Corporate Social Responsibility (CSR) funds to enhance facilities at historically-important monuments.

    Changes made: It has incorporated a host of changes to the programme such as: 

    – Clearly defined the amenities sought for different monuments as per Ancient Monuments and Archaeological Sites and Remains Act (or AMASR Act), 1958.

    – Freedom has been given to companies to either adopt a monument in whole and develop its tourism infrastructure, or provide a particular amenity such as drinking water facility or cleaning services for one or several sites.

    Applying procedure for a monument: The stakeholders can apply for adopting a monument or specific amenities at a monument through a dedicated web portal 

    – The process for selection will be carried out after due-diligence and discussions with various stakeholders and assessing the economic and developmental opportunities at each monument.

    – The term of the appointment will be for a period of five years initially, which may be further extended up to five years.

    What is an Indian Heritage app?

    Indian Heritage app will showcase the heritage monuments of India.The app will feature state-wise details of monuments along with photographs, list of public amenities available, geo-tagged location and feedback mechanism for citizens. 

  • DPIIT holds review meeting for wider adoption of PM GatiShakti National Master Plan in States/UTs

    Source: The post is based on the articleDPIIT holds review meeting for wider adoption of PM GatiShakti National Master Plan in States/UTs”  published in PIB on 3rd September 2023

    What is the News?

    The Department for Promotion of Industry and Internal Trade (DPIIT) has conducted a review meeting with States and Union Territories to promote broader utilization of the PM GatiShakti National Master Plan (NMP).

    What is the PM GatiShakti National Master Plan (NMP)?

    Launched in: 2021

    Aim: To break the inter-ministerial tangles and silos and foster cooperation and integration in the fasttrack implementation of projects. 

    Objectives: 1) smooth multimodal connectivity 2) enhanced prioritization and optimal usage of resources to create capacities on time and 3) resolution of issues like standardization, disjointed planning and clearances.

    Targets: 

    – The national highway network will be extended to expand the limit of roadways and touch the 2 lakh-km mark.

    – Making of around 200 new airports, heliports, and water aerodromes to support aviation.

    – The limit of railways to move cargo will be expanded to around 1,600 tons by FY25.

    – The transmission network for power will be extended to 454,200 circuit km for easy access.

    – Increment renewable capacity to 225 GW by FY25 and complete around 17,000 km of gas pipelines.

    What are the benefits of PM Gati Shakti?

    – It lays out a centralized portal to unite the infrastructural initiatives of 16 central ministries and departments.

    –  Optimized Route Planning

    – Enhanced visibility of intersections from forest, economic zones, archaeological sites etc.

    – Enabling time and cost saving for planning and implementation of infrastructure projects, such as, use of digital surveys on NMP to streamline the preparation of Detailed Project Reports (DPR) with higher accuracy.

    – It will create employment potential for a large number of individuals.

  • Minister of Fisheries, Animal Husbandry & Dairying lays the Foundation Stone for the establishment of Multi-Purpose Seaweed Park in Tamil Nadu

    Source: The post is based on the article Minister of Fisheries, Animal Husbandry & Dairying lays the Foundation Stone for the establishment of Multi-Purpose Seaweed Park in Tamil Nadu published in PIB on 4th September 2023

    What is the News?

    On the third day of the Sagar Parikrama, the Minister of Fisheries, Animal Husbandry & Dairying laid the Foundation Stone for the establishment of a Multi-Purpose Seaweed Park in Tamil Nadu.

    What is Seaweed?

    Click Here to read

    What is a Multi-Purpose Seaweed Park?

    Established in: Tamil Nadu

    Announced in: In the Union Budget 2021, the Finance Minister had announced the proposal to set up ‘Multipurpose Seaweed Park in Tamil Nadu’.

    Objectives: To promote seaweed cultivation for creation of employment opportunity for coastal fisher youth and fisher women. 

    – To develop value-added seaweed products by encouraging private sector/ entrepreneurs and supporting them in setting up seaweed processing units in the seaweed park.

    – Development of seaweed seed bank in collaboration with research institutes, universities, private entrepreneurs and fisheries department

    – Exploration of untapped seaweed potential in the coastal districts of Tamil Nadu through scientific and traditional seaweed farming and development of R&D centres for production of quality seaweed.

    Key Features: The seaweed park will  provide a single window support for the entrepreneurs, processors etc. to access information on schemes, licenses/approvals required, while also providing space to set up processing centres.

  • G20 THINQ

    Source: The post is based on the articleG20 THINQ”  published in PIB on 4th September 2023

    What is the News?

    The Indian Navy has launched the second edition of The Indian Navy Quiz “G20 THINQ”.

    What is G20 THINQ?

    G20 THINQ is a national and international quiz competition that brings together youth from different regions and geographies, and enables them to build lasting friendships in the spirit of ‘Vasudaiva Kutumbakam’ – world is one family.

    Conducted by: Indian Navy under the aegis of the G20 Secretariat and in partnership with NWWA (Navy Welfare and Wellness Association) and will have two levels National and International.

    Levels: The competition comprises two levels: the national round and the international round.

    – The National Round of the G20 THINQ will see participation of school children studying in Classes IX to XII.

    – The International Round will see the participation of teams from G20+9 nations, each team comprising two students. 

    Significance: G20 THINQ will serve as a remarkable finale to India’s Presidency that witnessed many unique achievements of the G20 at the global level.

  • Aarogya Maitri Cube: India Builds World’s First Portable Hospital to Keep 200 Survivors Alive for 48 Hrs

    Source: The post is based on the article Aarogya Maitri Cube: India Builds World’s First Portable Hospital to Keep 200 Survivors Alive for 48 Hrs published in News18 on 4th September 2023

    What is the News?

    India has built the world’s first disaster hospital that can be airlifted, packed in 72 cubes.It has been named as ‘Aarogya Maitri Cube’.

    What is Aarogya Maitri Cube?

    Aarogya Maitri Cube is the world’s first disaster hospital that can be airlifted.

    It has been developed indigenously under the Project BHISHM (Bharat Health Initiative for Sahyog Hita and Maitri). 

    It has been developed as part of India’s ‘Aarogya Maitri’ initiative to provide essential medical supplies to friendly countries.

    Key Features: Aarogya Maitri Cube is packed in 72 cubes.These cubes contain essential equipment and supplies, such as an operation theater, a mini-ICU, ventilators, blood test equipment, an X-ray machine, a cooking station, food, water, shelter, a power generator, and more. 

    – The special cage can hold 36 mini-cubes filled with supplies needed for 100 people to survive for two days. 

    – There are two of these cages, called master cubes, which can be joined to support 200 survivors.One of the major features of these cubes is their ability to handle various severe injuries, including bullet injuries, major bleeds etc.

  • Centre’s DIKSHA e-education platform to offer AI help

    Source: The post is based on the article “Centre’s DIKSHA e-education platform to offer AI help”  published in The Hindu on 4th September 2023

    What is the News?

    The National e-Governance Division (NeGD) of the Ministry of Electronics and Information Technology (MeitY) in India is planning to integrate Personalized Adaptive Learning (PAL) into its existing Digital Infrastructure for Knowledge Sharing (DIKSHA) platform.

    What is Personalized Adaptive Learning(PAL)?

    It is a software-based approach that will allow each student to have an individualized learning experience over the course of the curriculum based on their unique needs and abilities.

    What is DIKSHA Platform?

    DIKSHA is an initiative of the Ministry of Education for digital online education.

    It provides quality e-content for school education in States/UTs and QR coded Energized Textbooks for all grades.

    It also has embedded assistive technologies for learners with visual or hearing impairments. 

    Apart from this, DIKSHA also hosts 2.43 lakh contributions by 11,624 academics by way of teaching videos, explainers and practice questions. 

    How will integration of PAL with DIKSHA platform help?

    The integration of PAL into DIKSHA is expected to revolutionize the platform by leveraging artificial intelligence (AI) to cater to the specific learning needs of students.

    For example, if a student of Class 9 is learning the Pythagoras theorem and makes a calculation mistake, the AI learning system flags it and loops the student back to a basic video of how to make the calculation.

    What are the challenges in integration of PAL with DIKSHA platform?

    Building PAL is a massive exercise.Content from across subjects will have to be categorized and different chunks will have to be tagged.New content may also have to be created.

    The initial focus of the government is likely to be on subjects like chemistry, mathematics, and physics for Classes 9 to 12.

    Several states like Andhra Pradesh, Assam, and Haryana have experimented with PAL with the help of private players but are facing budget constraints.

  • PM asks the citizens to participate in Meri Maati Mera Desh campaign

    Source: The post is based on the articlePM asks the citizens to participate in Meri Maati Mera Desh campaign published in PIB on 2nd September 2023

    What is the News?

    The Prime Minister has asked the citizens to participate in the Meri Mati Mera Desh campaign.

    What is the Meri Mati Mera Desh campaign?

    The Meri Mati Mera Desh campaign is being organized nationwide as the closing program of Azadi ka Amrit Mahotsav festivities. 

    The campaign is a tribute to the Veers and Veeranganas who have made the supreme sacrifice for the country.

    The campaign comprises of many activities such as:

    Dedication of Shilaphalakam (Memorial): A memorial will be built on which the names of the bravehearts shall be inscribed.

    – These shall include freedom fighters, defense personnel, personnel of Central Armed Police Forces and State Police who laid down their lives in the line of duty.

    – The memorial shall be erected locally within Panchayats/Villages as well as urban sites—likely near Amrit Sarovars or local schools or other prominent locations.

    ‘Panch Pran’ Pledge: At the memorial site, people will take a solemn pledge covering Panch Pran affirming their commitment to the country.

    – The pledge is: 1) Make India developed and self-reliant by 2047 2) Remove any trace of colonial mindset 3) Celebrate our heritage 4) Strengthen unity and respect those who protect the country and 5) Perform the duties of a citizen.

    Vasudha Vandhan: Panchayats/villages/urban local bodies will replenish Mother Earth by planting 75 saplings of indigenous species and develop the ‘Amrit Vatika’.

    Veeron Ka Vandan: Felicitation ceremonies shall be held for honouring the freedom fighters and the families of deceased freedom fighters.

    These ceremonies shall also honour retired personnel from Defence, CAPF and State Police and the families of the bravehearts of these forces who have sacrificed their lives in the line of duty.

    Rashtragaan: Hoisting of the National Flag and singing of Rashtragaan shall be undertaken at the sites.

  • NPS withdrawal options set to be eased, says PFRDA

    Source: The post is based on the articleNPS withdrawal options set to be eased, says PFRDA published in The Hindu on 2nd September 2023

    What is the News?

    Several state governments have opted out of the National Pension System (NPS) and switched back to the Old Pension Scheme which guarantees a monthly pension of 50% of the final salary for their employees.However, still these states continue to contribute to the NPS corpus.

    Currently, under NPS, State government employees account for the largest chunk of the savings pool.

    What is the National Pension System(NPS)?

    National Pension System (NPS) is being administered and regulated by Pension Fund Regulatory and Development Authority (PFRDA) set up under PFRDA Act, 2013.

    NPS is a market linked, defined contribution product.Under NPS, a unique Permanent Retirement Account Number (PRAN) is generated and maintained by the Central Recordkeeping Agency (CRA) for individual subscribers.

    NPS offers two types of accounts, namely Tier-I and Tier-II: Tier-I account is the pension account having restricted withdrawals. 

    – Tier-II is a voluntary account which offers liquidity of investments and withdrawals.It is allowed only when there is an active Tier-I account in the name of the subscriber.The contributions accumulate over a period of time till retirement grows with market linked returns.

    – On exit/retirement/superannuation, a minimum of 40% of the corpus is mandatorily utilized to procure a pension for life by purchasing an annuity from a life insurance company and the balance corpus is paid as lump sum.

    NPS platform offers different models to suit the different segments of users. These include :

    The Government model for the Central and State Government Employees: NPS is mandatorily applicable on Central Government employees (except Armed Forces) recruited on or after 01.01.2004. Subsequently, all State Governments except a few states have also adopted NPS for their employees. 

    – Govt. employees make a monthly contribution at the rate of 10% of their salary and a matching contribution is paid by the Govt.For central Govt. employees, the employer’s contribution rate has been enhanced to 14% from 01.04.2019.

    The Corporate Model: Companies can adopt NPS for their employees with contribution rates as per the employment conditions.

    The All Citizens Model: The All Citizens Model of the NPS allows all citizens of India aged between 18 – 65 years to join NPS on a voluntary basis.

    What are the changes PFRDA is planning to bring to NPS?

    Presently, on superannuation, members have to purchase an annuity with 40% of their accumulated retirement savings and withdraw the balance.

    Now, PFRDA is planning to allow members to opt for a systematic withdrawal plan for 60% of the corpus, by which they can choose to receive a fixed sum from their savings on a monthly, quarterly or half-yearly basis.

    Moreover, for the mandatory annuity purchases, members would be able to opt for a mix of schemes rather than a single scheme.

  • ASI to launch “Adopt a Heritage 2.0 programme” and Indian Heritage app

    Source: The post is based on the article ASI to launch “Adopt a Heritage 2.0 programme” and Indian Heritage app”  published in PIB 1st September 2023

    What is the News?

    The Archaeological Survey of India(ASI) is set to launch the “Adopt a Heritage 2.0” programme and Indian Heritage app.

    What is Adopt a Heritage 2.0 Programme?

    The programme is a revamped version of the Adopt a Heritage scheme launched in 2017.

    Aim: To safeguard India’s diverse cultural heritage by inviting corporate stakeholders to enhance the amenities at over 3,600 monuments spread throughout the country. 

    – These monuments not only showcase India’s rich cultural history but also contribute significantly to economic growth.

    Under the programme, corporate stakeholders can utilize their Corporate Social Responsibility (CSR) funds to enhance the amenities at the historical sites.

    – This revamped version emphasizes the amenities required for different monuments, as defined by the Ancient Monuments and Archaeological Sites and Remains (AMASR) Act ,1958. 

    – Interested stakeholders can apply to adopt a monument or specific amenities through a dedicated web portal.

    – The process for selection will be carried out after due-diligence and discussions with various stakeholders.

    – The selected stakeholders will develop, provide and/or maintain amenities in hygiene, accessibility, safety and knowledge categories.

    – The term of the appointment will be for a period of five years initially, which may be further extended up to five years.

    What is an Indian Heritage app?

    Indian Heritage is a user-friendly mobile app.It will showcase the heritage monuments of India. 

    The app will feature state-wise details of monuments along with photographs, list of public amenities available, geo-tagged location and feedback mechanism for citizens.

  • Aatmanirbhar Bharat Rozgar Yojana (ABRY) Surpasses Employment Generation Target

    Source: The post is based on the article Aatmanirbhar Bharat Rozgar Yojana (ABRY) Surpasses Employment Generation Target”  published in PIB on 30th August 2023

    What is the News?

    Aatmanirbhar Bharat Rozgar Yojana(ABRY) has exceeded its initial employment generation goals showcasing its success in fostering job creation and recovery during the COVID-19 pandemic.

    What is Aatmanirbhar Bharat Rozgar Yojana(ABRY)?

    Launched on: 1st October, 2020 

    Aim: To incentivize employers for creation of new employment and restoration of loss of employment during Covid-19 pandemic.

    Benefits under the scheme: Under the scheme, the government of India for a period of two years, is crediting both the employee’ share (12% of wages) and employer’s share (12% of wages) of contribution for establishments with up to 1000 employees.

    – For establishments with over 1000 employees, only the employee’s EPF contributions (12% of wages) were covered in respect of new employees.

    Eligibility for benefits: An employee drawing a monthly wage of less than Rs. 15000/- who was not working in any establishment registered with the Employees’ Provident Fund Organization (EPFO) before 1st October, 2020.

    – The employees who lost their job during Covid-19 pandemic and did not join any EPF covered establishment upto 30.09.2020.

    Duration of the scheme: The scheme commenced from 1st October 2020 and registration was open for eligible employers and new employees upto 31st March, 2022.

    Achievements of the scheme: The scheme had set a target to benefit approximately 7.18 million employees across India. 

    – As of July 31, 2023, the ABRY has already achieved an enrolment of over 7.58 million new employees, surpassing its initial employment generation target.

  • Strategic Initiatives by Coal Ministry increase Availability of Domestic Coking Coal for Steel Production, Reduce Imports

    Source: The post is based on the article Strategic Initiatives by Coal Ministry increase Availability of Domestic Coking Coal for Steel Production, Reduce Imports published in PIB on 29th August 2023

    What is the News?

    The Ministry of Steel and the Ministry of Coal are taking up collaborative efforts to enhance domestic Coking Coal availability and minimize import reliance. 

    What is Coking Coal and why is it imported?

    Coking coal also known as metallurgical coal is mainly used in manufacturing of steel through blast furnace route. 

    Domestic coking coal is high ash coal (mostly between 18% – 49%) and is not suitable for direct use in the blast furnace.

    Therefore, coking coal is washed to reduce the ash percentage and is blended with imported coking coal (<9% ash) before utilization in the blast furnace. 

    About 50 MT coking coal is imported by the country on an annual basis and the value of coking coal imported in FY 2020-21 was Rs. 45435 crore. 

    Thus, increasing the supply of domestic coking coal would not only help in reducing the coking coal imports but also help in saving the forex and fortifying our foreign exchange reserves.

    What is Mission Coking Coal?

    Government of India has launched ‘Mission Coking Coal’ in August, 2021 to suggest a roadmap to augment the production and utilization of domestic coking coal in India by 2030.

    The mission envisions significantly reducing Coking Coal imports through a transformative measures under the “Atmanirbhar Bharat” initiative. 

    These measures encompass exploration, enhanced production, technological adoption, private sector involvement in coking coal blocks, establishment of new washeries, increased R&D activities, and quality enhancement.

    What are the measures taken to increase production of Coking Coal?

    Auction of Coking Coal Blocks: The Ministry of Coal achieved a significant milestone with the allocation of 16 Coking Coal Blocks.Out of which, 4 blocks were auctioned in 2022-23.This effort is projected to contribute a substantial 1.54 MT to Coking Coal production.

    Revitalizing Abandoned Mines: Bharat Coking Coal Limited (BCCL) has opened new avenues by inviting agencies and companies to undertake Coking Coal extraction from abandoned or discontinued BCCL-owned mines.

    Strategic Collaboration with SAIL: Steel Authority of India Limited (SAIL) and BCCL have signed an MoU for supply of 1.8 MT of washed Coking Coal to increase the availability of Coking Coal.

    Innovative Greenfield Washeries: The Ministry of Coal encourages the establishment of greenfield washeries or refurbishment of existing BCCL washeries to increase Coking Coal availability. 

  • Pradhan Mantri Jan Dhan Yojana (PMJDY) – National Mission for Financial Inclusion, completes nine years of successful implementation

    Source: The post is based on the article Pradhan Mantri Jan Dhan Yojana (PMJDY) – National Mission for Financial Inclusion, completes nine years of successful implementation”  published in PIB on 28th August 2023

    What is the News?

    The Pradhan Mantri Jan Dhan Yojana (PMJDY) – the National Mission for Financial Inclusion – has completed nine years of successful implementation.

    What is Pradhan Mantri Jan Dhan Yojana(PMJDY)?

    Click Here to read

    What is the impact of PMJDY?

    PMJDY has been the foundation stone for people-centric economic initiatives.Whether it is direct benefit transfers, COVID-19 assistance, PM-KISAN, wages under MGNREGA, the first step of all these initiatives is to provide every adult with a bank account, which PMJDY has nearly completed.

    One in 2 accounts opened between March 2014 to March 2020 was a PMJDY account.

    Within 10 days of nationwide lockdown more than about 20 crore women PMJDY accounts were credited with financial assistance of Rs 500 per month for three months through DBT in each women PMJDY account.

    What are the achievements of PMJDY?

    Number of total PMJDY Accounts: 50.09 crore.Of which 55.6% account holders are women and 66.7% accounts are in rural and semi-urban areas.

    Deposits: Deposits have increased about 13 times.

    Average deposit per account has increased over 3.8 times.Increase in average deposit is another indication of increased usage of accounts and inculcation of saving habits among account holders.

    DBT transactions: About 6.26 crore PMJDY account holders receive direct benefit transfer (DBT) from the Government under various schemes.

    Digital transactions in India have experienced remarkable growth due to various initiatives:

    – The issuance of over 33.98 crore RuPay debit cards through the Pradhan Mantri Jan-Dhan Yojana (PMJDY).

    – The installation of 79.61 lakh Point of Sale (PoS) and mobile Point of Sale (mPoS) machines.

    – The introduction of mobile-based payment systems like UPI (Unified Payments Interface).

    – Due to these initiatives, the growth is evident in the total number of digital transactions, which has surged from 1,471 crore in FY 17-18 to 11,394 crore in FY 22-23. 

    – Specifically, UPI financial transactions have seen substantial growth, increasing from 92 crore in FY 2017-18 to 8,371 crore in FY 2022-23. 

    – Similarly, the total number of RuPay card transactions at PoS and in e-commerce has risen from 67 crore in FY 2017-18 to 126 crore in FY 2022-23.

    What is Jan Dhan Darshak App (JDD App)?

    JDD App is a mobile application which provides a citizen centric platform for locating banking touch points such as bank branches, ATMs, Banking Correspondents (BCs), Indian Post Payment Banks etc in the country.

    The app is also being used for identification of villages which are yet to be covered by banking outlets within a 5 km radius. 

    These identified villages are allocated to various banks by concerned SLBCs for opening of banking outlets.The efforts have resulted in a significant decrease in the number of uncovered villages.

  • SVAMITVA Scheme of Ministry of Panchayati Raj wins the National Award for e-Governance 2023 (Gold) for Application of Emerging Technologies for Providing Citizen Centric Services

    Source: The post is based on the articleSVAMITVA Scheme of Ministry of Panchayati Raj wins the National Award for e-Governance 2023 (Gold) for Application of Emerging Technologies for Providing Citizen Centric Services”  published in PIB on 27th August 2023

    What is the News?

    SVAMITVA Scheme of Ministry of Panchayati Raj has been conferred with the prestigious National Award for e-Governance 2023.

    What is the SWAMITVA Scheme?

    Nodal Ministry: Ministry of Panchayati Raj

    Type: Central Sector Scheme

    Aim: To provide the ‘Record of Rights’ to village household owners possessing houses in inhabited areas (Abadi) in villages.

    Objectives of the scheme: To create accurate land records for rural planning and reduce property related disputes.

    – To bring financial stability to the citizens in rural India by enabling them to use their property as a financial asset for taking loans and other financial benefits.

    – Determination of property tax, which would accrue to the GPs directly in States where it is devolved or else, add to the State exchequer.

    – Creation of survey infrastructure and GIS maps that can be leveraged by any department for their use.

    – To support the preparation of a better-quality Gram Panchayat Development Plan (GPDP) by making use of GIS maps.

    Ministries involved: The scheme is being implemented with the collaborative efforts of the Ministry of Panchayati Raj, Survey of India (SoI), State Revenue Department, State Panchayati Raj Department and National Informatics Centre. 

    Under the scheme, the land parcels in rural inhabited areas of all the villages are surveyed using drone technology. 

    Target: The scheme aims to cover 6.62 lakh villages in the country from Financial Year 2020-21 to Financial Year 2024-25.

  • NIAS launches pilot project involving GEOAI and random forest tech to monitor air pollution in Bengaluru

    Source: The post is based on the article “NIAS launches pilot project involving GEOAI and random forest tech to monitor air pollution in Bengaluru”  published in Indian Express on 25th August 2023.

    What is the News?

    At the India Clean Air Summit (ICAS), National Institute of Advanced Studies (NIAS), informed that it has launched a pilot project to monitor and predict the city’s air quality.

    What is the India Clean Air Summit(ICAS)?

    India Clean Air Summit(ICAS) is India’s premier event on air pollution.

    Organized by: Centre for Air Pollution Studies (CAPS) at the Center for Study of Science, Technology and Policy (CSTEP).

    Aim: To understand the impact of climate change on air pollution in the light of Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs) and the actions required to deal with it. 

    What is the National Institute of Advanced Studies(NIAS)?

    National Institute of Advanced Studies(NIAS) is a premier institute in India engaged in interdisciplinary and multidisciplinary research in natural sciences, social sciences, arts and humanities.It was founded by J. R. D. Tata in 1988.

    Located in: Bangalore

    What is the project launched by NIAS  to monitor and predict the city’s air quality?

    The pilot project has been launched in Bangalore. It combines geospatial artificial intelligence (GeoAI) and random forest technology to monitor and predict air quality in the city.

    The random forest algorithm combines data from various air quality monitoring stations to predict the Air Quality Index. 

    GeoAI uses technology like artificial intelligence, satellite imagery, and mobile data to identify sources of air pollution.

    This project will soon be launched in cities like Delhi, Mumbai, Chennai, and Kolkata.

  • National Action for Mechanised Sanitation Ecosystem (NAMASTE)

    Source: The post is based on the article “National Action for Mechanised Sanitation Ecosystem (NAMASTE)  published in PIB on 25th August 2023.

    What is the News?

    The Government of India is implementing the National Action for Mechanised Sanitation Ecosystem (NAMASTE) scheme to stop deaths of Sewers and Septic Tank Workers (SSWs) and to promote mechanization of cleaning operations with a vision to reduce hazardous cleaning and ensure safety of sanitation workers.

    What is the National Action for Mechanised Sanitation Ecosystem (NAMASTE) Scheme?

    Launched by: Ministry of Social Justice and Empowerment (MoSJE) and Ministry of Housing and Urban Affairs (MoHUA)

    Aim: To eliminate hazardous cleaning, stop deaths of sewer and septic tank workers and ensure their safety and dignity.

    Type: Central Sector Scheme

    Replaced by: The scheme has replaced the Self-Employment Scheme for the Rehabilitation of Manual Scavengers (SRMS), which was started in 2007.

    Coverage: The scheme is to be implemented in all 4800+ Urban Local Bodies (ULBs) of the country, during the three years upto 2025-26.

    Objectives of the scheme: Zero fatalities in sanitation work in India

    – All sanitation work is performed by skilled workers

    –  No sanitation workers come in direct contact with human faecal matter

    – Sanitation workers are collectivized into SHGs and are empowered to run sanitation enterprise

    – All Sewer and Septic tank  sanitation workers (SSWs) have access to alternative livelihoods

    – Strengthened supervisory and monitoring systems at national, state and ULB levels to ensure enforcement and monitoring of safe sanitation work.

    What are the key features of the Scheme to be Implemented in all ULBs?

    Identification: NAMASTE envisages identifying the Sewer/Septic Tank Workers (SSWs).

    Occupational Training and distribution of PPE Kits to SSWs.

    Assistance for Safety Devices to Sanitation Response Units (SRUs).

    Extending Health Insurance Scheme Benefits to identified SSWs and their families under the Ayushman Bharat- Pradhan Mantri Jan Arogya Yojana (AB-PMJAY).

    Livelihood Assistance: The Action Plan will promote mechanization and enterprise development by providing funding support and subsidy (capital +interest) to the sanitation workers, to procure sanitation related equipment.

    IEC (Information Education and Communication) Campaign: Massive campaigns would be undertaken jointly by the ULBs & NSKFDC (National Safai Karamcharis Finance & Development Corporation) to spread awareness about the interventions of NAMASTE.

  • Indore best city, M.P. top State in Smart Cities contest

    Source: The post is based on the article “Indore best city, M.P. top State in Smart Cities contest”  published in The Hindu on 26th August 2023.

    What is the News?

    The President of India will present the India Smart Cities Award Contest (ISAC), 2022.

    What is the India Smart Cities Award Contest (ISAC)?

    India Smart Cities Award Contest (ISAC) is organized by the Ministry of Housing and Urban Affairs.

    Aim: To recognize and reward cities, projects and innovative ideas that are promoting sustainable development across the 100 smart cities as well as stimulating inclusive, equitable, safe, healthy and collaborative cities leading to a better quality of life for all.

    The ISAC award had a two-stage submission process consisting of ‘Qualifying Stage’, which involved overall assessment of the city’s performance, and the ‘Proposal Stage’ which required the smart cities to submit their nominations for six award categories.

    This is the fourth edition of the ISAC awards with the previous ones held in 2018, 2019, and 2020.There were no awards in 2021 due to the COVID-19 pandemic.

    What are the key takeaways from ISAC 2022?

    Indore has been named as the best Smart City. Surat and Agra are the second and third place winners among cities.

    Madhya Pradesh has been chosen as the top state. Tamil Nadu is the second in State category followed by Rajasthan and Uttar Pradesh.

    The award for the best Union Territory has gone to Chandigarh.

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