News: July 09, 2020

Sub: Society
Topic: Human Development Poverty and Employment
Category: Prelims & Mains


News: 1/5

Poverty upliftment initiatives

Pradhan Mantri Garib Kalyan Package (PM-GKP)

* Not to be confused with Pradhan Mantri Garib Kalyan Yojana (PMGKY), which was launched in 2016, and it allowed citizens to declare black money at 50% tax rate.

Announced in March, 2020, finance minister announced Rs 1.70 Lakh Crore relief package under Pradhan Mantri Garib Kalyan Yojana. Following are the components of scheme:

  • Insurance
    • Scheme for health workers fighting COVID-19 in Government Hospitals and Health Care Centres.
    • Compensation of 50 lakh to any health professional who meets an accident while treating a COVID patient
  • PM Garib Kalyan Ann (अन्न) Yojana
    • 5kg of food grains per person, and 1 kg of pulse and chana per family for free to anyone till NOvember.
      • Initially it was limited to those who were beneficiaries under the National Food Security Act (NFSA) .
    • 80 crore individuals would get double their entitlement for free of cost till August. Extended till November
    • The scheme will not be replacing any other food scheme.
  • Cash transfer
    • PMJDY women account holders to get 500 for next 3 months
    • Free gas cylinders to 8 crore poor families till September months under Ujjwala
    • 24% contribution to EPFO for 3 months for those earning less than 15000
    • EPF accounts to allow non-refundable advance of 75 percent of the amount or three months of the wages, whichever is lower
  • Divyang
    • Rs 1000 to divyangs, senior citizens, aged widows under National Social Assistance Programme (NSAP)
  • Agriculture
    • Payment of 2000 to farmers under PM-KISAN
    • Increase in MNREGA wage to Rs 202 , and additional Rs 2,000 benefit annually to a worker

[In News]

  • July, 20
    • Extension of PM Garib Kalyan Ann Yojana, and free gas cylinder till November
  • Aug, 20
    • As many as 11 States and Union Territories did not carry out any distribution at all under the Pradhan Mantri Garib Kalyan Anna Yojana (PMGKAY) in July, the first month of the extended scheme

Sub: Geography
Topic: Environment Ecosystem Vegetation and Wildlife
Category: Prelims & Mains


News: 2/5

Reserves in focus

National Park

  • Assam
    • Kaziranga National Park
  • Kerala
    • Mukkuruthi National Park 
    • Silent Valley National Park
  • Rajasthan
    • Ranthambhore National Park
  • Tamil Nadu
    • Nagarahole National Park
  • Uttar Pradesh
    • Dudhwa National Park 

Elephant Reserves

  •  Assam
    • Dehing Patkai Elephant Reserve

Tiger Reserves

Of the 3,980 tigers left in the world, India, with 2,226, accounts for 75%.

  • Andhra Pradesh
    • Nagarjunasagar Srisailam Tiger Reserve - largest tiger reserve in India 
  •  Assam
    • Orang National Park
  • Maharashtra
    • Tadoba Andhari Tiger Reserve
  • Rajasthan 
    • Sariska Tiger Reserve 
  • Tamil Nadu
    • Nagarahole Tiger Reserve
  • Telangana
    • Amarabad Tiger Reserve 
  • Uttarakhand
    • Rajaji Tiger Reserve

Wildlife Sanctuary

  • Assam
    • Dehing Patkai wildlife sanctuary : To be upgraded into national park
    • Pobitora Wildlife Sanctuary 
  • Karnataka
    • Sharavathi Wildlife Sanctuary
  • Kerala
    • Karimpuzha Wildlife Sanctuary
      • borders the Mukkuruthi National Park in the south and the Silent Valley National Park buffer zone in the northeast.
      • Sanctuary comprise the new Amarambalam reserve forest and Vadakkekotta vested forest
      • However, the Manjeri colony of the primitive Cholanaikar tribes has been exempted from the sanctuary. 
  • Global
    • Bhutan
      • Sakteng wildlife sanctuary

[In News: Latest]

  • June, 20
    • Floods
    • Tiger reserves in news
  • July, 20
    • Karimpuzha Wildlife Sanctuary - inauguration of 18th wildlife sanctuary in state.
    • Sakteng wildlife sanctuary - China objecting to UNDP's Global Environment Facility (GEF) funding for park, citing boundary dispute
    • Green-lighting projects during pandemic

Sub: Economics
Topic: Banking, Finance and Tax System Finance and Banking - India
Category: Prelims & Mains


News: 3/5

Insurance Regulatory and Development Authority of India (IRDAI)

Autonomous statutory body, constituted under Insurance Regulatory and Development Authority Act, 1999. IRDA is tasked with regulating and promoting insurance in country. It is a 10-member body - chairman, five full-time and four part-time members 

Initiatives in focus

  • IRDAI allows insurers to offer short-term (3 to 11 month) COVID-19 health cover.
  • Allowed insurers to provide a three- month moratorium (June to August) on repayment of term insurance loans issued by them.


Arogya Sanjeevani (AS)

  • Arogya Sanjeevani policy is a standard health insurance policy for individuals and families that provides coverage for basic hospitalisation-related expenses
  • At present, the Arogya Sanjeevani Policy comes with a basic health cover of minimum sum insured of Rs 1 lakh and maximum sum insured of Rs 5 lakh
  • IRDAI has allowed insurers to offer standard health policy as a group policy under the same name "Arogya Sanjeevani"

Corona Kavach

  • Corona Kavach Policy will be available on an individual and family floater basis
  • The minimum sum insured under the Corona Kavach Policy will be ₹50,000 and the maximum sum insured will be ₹5 lakh
  • The standard Corona Kavach policy will cover hospitalisation expenses on diagnosis of Covid; and an optional cover of daily cash on benefit basis.
  • The policy will cover the cost of treatment incurred by the insured person on availing treatment at home for Covid on positive diagnosis up to 14 days per incident
  • The policy will be available for three and half months (3 ½ months),six and half months (6 ½ months), nine and half months (9 ½ months) including the waiting period
  • Corona Kavach policy can be availed by persons between the age of 18 to 65 years

Sub: Economics
Topic: Development Infrastructure
Category: Prelims & Mains


News: 4/5


Airports Authority of India (AAI) 

  • Constituted in 1995 by Airports Authority of India Act, 1994 by merging erstwhile National Airports Authority and International Airports Authority of India
  • Design, Development, Operation and Maintenance of international and domestic airports
  • Development and Management of cargo terminals at international and domestic airports.
  • Control and Management of the Indian airspace extending beyond the territorial limits of the country, as accepted by ICAO.

India has a open skies policy with SAARC countries and those beyond the 5,000-km radius, which implies that nations within this distance need to enter into a bilateral agreement and mutually determine the number of flights that their airlines can operate between the two countries

International Civil Aviation Organization (ICAO)

  • ICAO is a UN specialized agency, established by in 1944, to manage the administration and governance of the Convention on International Civil Aviation, 1944 (Chicago Convention).
  • ICAO works with the Convention’s 193 Member States and industry groups to reach consensus on international civil aviation Standards and Recommended Practices (SARPs) and policies in support of a safe, efficient, secure, economically sustainable and environmentally responsible civil aviation sector. 

Air Freedom Rights / Freedoms of the air

  • The freedoms of the air are a set of commercial aviation rights granting a country’s airline the privilege to enter and land in another country’s airspace
  • These were formulated over disagreements on extent of aviation space in Convention on International Civil Aviation, 1944 (Chicago Convention).
  • There are a total of 9 freedoms. Only first five are officially recognized by ICAO.
  • International Air Services Transit Agreement (IASTA) / Two freedom agreement : Refers to first two freedom rights, allowing for transit (reasonable fees can be imposed) and emergency landing in foreign countries.
  • Important Rights:
    • First freedom of Air: Right to fly over a foreign country without landing
    • Second freedom of Air: Right to refuel or carry out maintenance in a foreign country without embarking or disembarking passengers or cargo
    • Third freedom of Air: Right to fly from one's own country to another country
    • Fourth freedom of Air: Right to fly from another country to one's own
    • Fifth freedom of Air: Right to fly between two foreign countries on a flight originating or ending in one's own country
    • Sixth freedom of Air:  Right to fly between two places in a foreign country, or two separate foreign countries, while stopping in one's own country for non-technical reasons.


[In News]

  • July, 20
    • Airports Authority of India (AAI) has put Air India in cash-and-carry mode at Ahmedabad
    • UAE is keen to have an open sky agreement with India, and wants India to revisit fifth and sixth freedoms
    • After a long stalemate that left many stranded, India and the UAE have agreed to allow each other’s airlines to bring passengers into their territory. Until now Vande Bharat flights operated by Air India Express were flying empty out of India while bringing back Indians from the UAE. The same was true for airlines such as Emirates and flydubai, which were not allowed to bring passengers into India
  • Aug, 20
    • Ban on international flights extended till Aug. 31
    • Kerala plane crash: ICAO document 9981 for airports serves as a guideline for compatibility study of the operation of larger aircraft in a comparatively smaller aerodrome

Sub: Politics
Topic: Governance Policies and Welfare schemes
Category: Prelims & Mains


News: 5/5


Pradhan Mantri Awas Yojana - Urban (PMAY-U)

  • Launched in 2015, to achieve "Housing for All 2022". Under Ministry of Housing and Urban Affairs
  • The Mission provides Central Assistance to the implementing agencies through States/Union Territories (UTs) and Central Nodal Agencies (CNAs) for providing houses to all eligible families/ beneficiaries 
    • NHB, HUDCO and SBI have been identified as Central Nodal Agencies (CNAs) 
  • Female head of the family to be the owner or co-owner of the house 
  • A basket of options is adopted to ensure more number of people depending on their income, finance and availability of land through following four options.
    • In-situ Slum Redevelopment (ISSR): Central Assistance of Rs.1 lakh per house is admissible for all houses built for eligible slum dwellers 
    • Credit Linked Subsidy Scheme (CLSS)
      • Interest Subsidy up to 2.67 lakh per house is admissible for Beneficiaries of Economically Weaker Section (EWS)/Low Income Group (LIG), Middle Income Group (MIG)-I and Middle Income Group (MIG)-II 
      • interest subsidies of 6.5%, 4% and 3% on loan amount up to Rs. 6 lakh, Rs. 9 lakh and Rs. 12 lakh are admissible for a house with carpet area of up to 60, 160 and 200 Sq.Meter for EWS/LIG, MIG I and MIG II respectively.
    • Affordable Housing in Partnership (AHP): Central Assistance of Rs.1.5 Lakh per EWS house is provided by Government of India in projects where at least 35% of the houses in the projects are for EWS category and a single project has at least 250 houses.
    • Beneficiary-led individual house construction/enhancements (BLC): Central Assistance of Rs.1.5 lakh is available to individual eligible families belonging to EWS categories to either construct new houses or enhance existing houses
  • In focus
    • Rental housing complexes under PMAY-U for migrants approved by Cabinet

Pradhan Mantri Awaas Yojana - Gramin (PMAY-G)

  • Restructured from Indira Awaas Yojana in 2016, to achieve "Housing for All 2022"
  • The minimum size of the house to be 25 ( with a hygienic cooking space. 
  • Beneficiaries to be chosen from BPL families based on Socio Economic and Caste Census (SECC), 2011, verified by Gram Sabhas 
  • The unit assistance to be Rs. 1.20 lakh in plain and Rs 1.30 lakh in hilly states, difficult areas and IAP district. 
    • The cost of unit assistance is to be shared between Central and State Government in the ratio 60:40 in plain areas and 90:10 for North Eastern and the Himalayan States
  • The beneficiary is entitled to 90.95 person day of unskilled labour from MGNREGS
  • The assistance for construction of toilet shall be leveraged though convergence with SBM-G, MGNREGS or any other dedicated the source of funding
  • Implementation and monitoring is to be carried out through an end to end e-Governance model using AwaasSoft and Awaas App
  • Setting up of National Technical Support Agency at national level to provide technical support in achieving the target set under the project. 

[In News]

  • July, 20
    • Rental housing complexes under PMAY-U for migrants approved by Cabinet


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