Politics News

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

Created: 20 Jun, 2020
Updated: 14 Aug, 2020

Atmanirbhar Bharat Abhiyan

Atmanirbhar Bharat Abhiyaan or Self-Reliant India Movement, is a campaign launched by the Central Government with an economic stimulus package of 20 lakh crores, equivalent to 10% of India's GDP. It is also the theme for independence day, 2020

  • It has five pillars - Economy, Infrastructure, System, Vibrant Demography, and Demand.
  • The package emphasises on land, labour, liquidity and laws.
  • The package is aimed at providing the much needed financial & policy support to the cottage industry and MSMEs in India.Startups were not specifically covered under it.

 

Following key measures were proposed under the economic package.

Government Reforms

  • Increase in borrowing limits:  The borrowing limits of state governments will be increased from 3% to 5% of Gross State Domestic Product (GSDP) for the year 2020-21.
  • Privatisation of Public Sector Enterprise (PSEs): A new PSE policy has been announced with plans to privatise PSEs, except the ones functioning in certain strategic sectors which will be notified by the government.  In strategic sectors, at least one PSE will remain, but private sector will also be allowed.

Measures for businesses (including MSMEs)

  • Collateral free loans for businesses: All businesses (including MSMEs) will be provided with collateral free automatic loans of up to 3 lakh crore rupees.
  • Corpus for MSMEs: A fund of funds with a corpus of Rs 10,000 crore will be set up for MSMEs
  • Schemes for NBFCs: A Special Liquidity Scheme was announced under which Rs 30,000 crore of investment will be made by the government in both primary and secondary market transactions in investment grade debt paper of Non-Banking Financial Companies (NBFCs)/Housing Finance Companies (HFCs)/Micro Finance Institutions (MFIs).  The central government will provide 100% guarantee for these securities.  
  • Disallowing global tenders: To protect Indian MSMEs from competition from foreign companies, global tenders of up to Rs 200 crore will not be allowed in government procurement tenders.
  • Ease of doing business for corporates: Direct listing of securities by Indian public companies in permissible foreign jurisdictions will be allowed.  Private companies which list Non-Convertible Debentures (NCDs) on stock exchanges will not be considered listed companies.  
  • Definition of MSME: The definition of MSMEs will be changed by amending the Micro, Small and Medium Enterprises Development Act, 2006.  As per the proposed definition, the investment limit will be increased from Rs 25 lakh to Rs 1 crore for micro enterprises, from Rs 5 crore to Rs 10 crore for small enterprises, and from Rs 10 crore to Rs 20 crore for medium enterprises. The turnover limit for Micro, Small and Medium enterprises will be Rs 5 crore, Rs 50 crore, and Rs 100 crore, respectively.
  • Pradhan Mantri Street Vendor’s AtmaNirbhar Nidhi Scheme (PM SVANIDHI) - By Minsitry of Housing and Urban Affairs. Vendors will be able to apply for a working capital loan of up to ₹10,000, which is repayable in monthly installments within a year.
  • Initiation of insolvency proceedings: The Insolvency and Bankruptcy Code, 2016 will be amended, with minimum threshold to initiate insolvency proceedings to be increased from one lakh rupees to one crore rupees

Agriculture and Allied sectors

  • Agri Infrastructure Fund: A fund of one lakh crore rupees will be created for development of agriculture infrastructure projects 
  • Emergency working capital for farmers: An additional fund of Rs 30,000 crore will be released as emergency working capital for farmers. This fund will be disbursed through NABARD to Rural Cooperative Banks (RCBs) and Regional Rural Banks (RRBs) for meeting their crop loans requirements.
  • Support to fishermen: The Pradhan Mantri Matsya Sampada Yojana (PMMSY) will be launched for integrated, sustainable, and inclusive development of marine and inland fisheries.
  • Employment push using CAMPA funds: The government will approve plans worth Rs 6,000 crore under the Compensatory Afforestation Management and Planning Authority (CAMPA) to facilitate job creation for tribals/adivasis
  • Amendments to the Essential Commodities Act: The Essential Commodities Act, 1955 empowers the central and state governments control the production, supply and distribution of certain commodities to avoid scarcity in the country. The Act will be amended to deregulate food items including cereals, edible oils, oilseeds, pulses, onions and potato. 

Migrant Workers

  • One Nation One Card: Migrant workers will be able to access the Public Distribution System (Ration) from any Fair Price Shop in India by March 2021 under the scheme of One Nation One Card. 
  • Affordable Rental Housing Complexes (ARHC) for Migrant Workers / Urban Poor: The migrant labour/urban poor will be provided living facilities at affordable rent under Pradhan Mantri Awas Yojana (PMAY). This will be achieved by: (i) converting government funded housing in the cities into ARHCs through PPPs, and (ii) incentivising manufacturing units, industries, institutions, associations to develop ARHCs on their private land and operate them.  

Defence

  • FDI limit in defence manufacturing under automatic route will be increased from 49% to 74%.

Energy

  • Privatisation of power distribution: Power departments/utilities in union territories will be privatised
  • Commercial coal mining: In March 2020, the Mineral Laws (Amendment) Bill was passed, which opened up the coal sector for commercial mining.  Auctions will be conducted for allocation of coal mines.  Any party can bid for a coal block and sell in the open market. 

Social Sector

  • Public health: The National Digital Health Blueprint will be implemented, which aims at creating an ecosystem to support universal health coverage in an efficient, inclusive, safe and timely manner using digital technology.
  • Allocation for MGNREGS: To help boost rural economy, an additional Rs 40,000 crore will be allocated under MGNREGS taking it to Rs 1,01,500 crore (65% increase) for 2020-21
  • Technology driven education: PM eVidya will be launched for multi-mode access to digital/online education.  This program will include facilities to support school education in states/UTs under the DIKSHA scheme (one nation, one digital platform).  National Foundational Literacy and Numeracy Mission will be launched by December 2020 to ensure that every child attains learning level and outcomes in grade 5 by 2025.

 

[Source] https://www.prsindia.org/report-summaries/summary-announcements-aatma-nirbhar-bharat-abhiyaan

[In News]

  • July, 20
    • Coal India Ltd. (CIL) introduces a new category of spot e-auction for importers only, and aimed at replacing 150 million tonne of imported coal with domestic supply.

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

Created: 21 Jun, 2020
Updated: 21 Jun, 2020

Members of Parliament Local Area Development Scheme (MPLADS)

  • Members of Parliament Local Area Development Division is entrusted with the responsibility of implementation of (MPLADS)
  • Under the scheme, each MP has the choice to suggest to the District Collector for works to the tune of Rs.5 Crores per annum to be taken up in his/her constituency.
    • Rajya Sabha Members can recommend works in one or more districts in the State from where he/she has been elected
    • Nominated Members of the Lok Sabha and Rajya Sabha may select any one or more Districts from any one State in the Country
  • Ministry of Statistics and Programme Implementation (MoSPI) issues the guidelines and working for the scheme.
  • Projects are implemented by district level officers under the guidelines from MoSPI
  • Of the MPLADS corpus, 15% has been earmarked for the development of Scheduled Castes and 7.5% for the Scheduled Tribes. Around 20 lakh of the MPLADS fund per annum is allotted for the welfare of differently abled people.

[In news]

  • Suspension of the MPLADS for 2020-21 and 2021-22 in the wake of the pandemic

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

Created: 22 Jun, 2020
Updated: 05 Aug, 2020

CAA and NRC

National Register of Citizens (NRC)

  • History
    • The National Register of Citizens was first prepared in Assam in 1951.
    • The 1951 NRC is said to have covered each and every person enumerated during the Census of 1951 in Assam.
    • The demands to update the NRC in Assam were first raised by the All Assam Students' Union (AASU) and All Assam Gana Sangram Parishad (AAGSP) in 1975 which ended with signing of  Assam Accord in 1985. As per accord, an Assamese citizen is one who:
      • had entered the state before 1966
      • came between 1966 and March 25, 1971. They would be disenfranchised for 10 years.
      • had their names in 1951 NRC
    • In 1997 Election Commission decided to add 'D' (D voters) against names of voters whose claim to Indian citizenship is doubtful.
    • In 2013, Supreme Court directed Centre to update NRC. A NRC State Coordinator Office was set up and updated NRC was finally released in 2019.
    • Those excluded from list could apply to the foreigners' tribunals.
      • Foreigners' Tribunals are quasi-judicial bodies established as per the Foreigners' Tribunal Order, 1964 and the Foreigners' Act, 1946
  • Assam is the only state that has implemented NRC.

Citizenship Amendment Act, CAA (CAA)

Citizenship Act, 1955 

  • Regulated who may acquire Indian citizenship on grounds of birth, descent, registration, naturalization, and incorporation of territory
  • A natural citizen is one who has stayed in India for at least 11 years

Citizenship Amendment Act, 2019

  • The Act prohibits illegal migrants from acquiring Indian citizenship. Illegal migrants are foreigners who enter India without a valid passport or travel document, or stay beyond the permitted time.  
  • The Act provides that Hindus, Sikhs, Buddhists, Jains, Parsis and Christians from Afghanistan, Bangladesh and Pakistan will not be treated as illegal migrants.
    • In order to get this benefit, they must have also been exempted from the Foreigners Act, 1946 and the Passport (Entry into India) Act, 1920 by the central government.
    • The 1920 Act mandates foreigners to carry passport, while the1946 Act regulates the entry and departure of foreigners in India. 
    • The provisions on citizenship for illegal migrants will not apply to the tribal areas of Assam, Meghalaya, Mizoram, or Tripura, as included in the Sixth Schedule to the Constitution. 
  • The Act reduces period to five years for citizenship by naturalization
  • On acquiring citizenship all legal proceedings against them in respect of their illegal migration or citizenship will be closed.
  • The Act provides that the central government may cancel registration of OCIs on grounds of registration through fraud, showing disaffection to the Constitution, engaging with the enemy during war, necessity in the interest of State, or if within five years of registration the OCI has been sentenced to imprisonment for two years or more.

Illegal migrants can be imprisoned or deported under the Foreigners Act, 1946 and the Passport (Entry into India) Act, 1920. 

[In News]

  • June, 20
    • India rejects US religious freedom report that takes note of CAA, NRC and Article 370
  • Aug, 20
    • Home Ministry has sought an extension of three months to frame the rules of the Citizenship (Amendment) Act, 2019

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

Created: 22 Jun, 2020
Updated: 28 Jun, 2020

Relief Funds

Prime Minister's Citizen Assistance and Relief in Emergency Situations Fund (PM CARES Fund)

  • Prime Minister is the ex-officio Chairman of the PM CARES Fund; and Minister of Defence, Minister of Home Affairs and Minister of Finance, Government of India are ex-officio Trustees of the Fund.
  • Prime Minister can also nominate three trustees to the Board of Trustees who shall serve in pro bono capacity
  • Donation to fund will qualify for 80G benefits for 100% under Income Tax. It will also qualify for Corporate Social Responsibility (CSR) expenditure. The fund will also get exemption from FCRA
  • PM CARES Fund is not a "public authority", so it is outside the gambit of RTI
    • Public Authority means any body constituted - under Constitution, or by law made by Parliament or state legislature, or by notification issued by government.
  • PM CARES, does not have a publicly available income and expenditure profile yet.
  • The Fund will be privately audited by an independent auditor.

 

Prime Minister’s National Relief Fund (PMNRF) 

  • Supported entirely with public contributions and does not get any budgetary support.
  • Since 1985, the management of the fund is entrusted entirely with the prime minister
  • The Prime Minister has the sole discretion of appointing a secretary to manage the fund assisted by a joint-secretary and an officer of the rank of director, all on an honorary basis.
  • Donation to fund will qualify for 80G benefits for 100% under Income Tax. It will also qualify for Corporate Social Responsibility (CSR) expenditure. The fund will also get exemption from FCRA
  • The resources of the PMNRF are utilized to provide assistance to persons affected by calamities 

[In News]

  • PM CARES Fund Trust has allocated 2,000 crore for the supply of 50,000 "Made-in-India" ventilators
  • Allegations on Congress diverting funds from PMNRF

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

Created: 23 Jun, 2020
Updated: 08 Aug, 2020

Northern States Policies And Schemes In Focus

Chhattisgarh

  • Godhan Nyay Yojana: To protect crops from open grazing, prevent straying of animals on roads, procuring cow dung for composting and eco friendly activities

Delhi

  • Electric Vehicle Policy:
    • To boost the city’s economy, reduce pollution levels and generate employment in the transport sector. It also includes incentives for the purchase of electric vehicles.
    • To seek rapid adoption of Battery Electric Vehicles (BEVs) so that they contribute to 25% of all new vehicle registrations by 2024
    • A State EV Fund’, to be created which will be funded through the air ambience fund, levy of additional taxes, cess on inefficient or polluting vehicles
    • Shall remain valid for a period of three years i.e. till 2023

Haryana

  • Parivar Pehchan Patra - PPP is an e-governance initiative that will enable the citizens to get the benefit of various Centre and State government schemes at their door-step in a fair and transparent manner. a separate Citizen Resources Information Department (CRID) has been established to give further momentum to the PPP programme.

Jammu and Kashmir

  • Jammu and Kashmir Grant Domicile Certificate (Procedure) Rules
    • Individuals who have resided in J&K for 15 years or have studied for seven years or appeared in examinations for class 10th or 12th can be eligible for the grant of a domicile certificate.
    • The eligibility also extends to West Pakistan refugees registered as migrants under the erstwhile state’s Relief and Rehabilitation Commission.
    • Tehsildar  (Executive Magistrate) can issue domicile certificate in most cases, and Relief and Rehabilitation Commissioner can issue certificattes for migrants. 

Madhya Pradesh

  • Satna-Bansagar Multi-Village Rural Water Supply Scheme: To bring treated water from the Bansagar Dam on the Son river to 1,019 villages in six blocks of the districts

Maharashtra

  • Magnetic Maharashtra 2.0 - To draw investment to state
  • BMC-Mpower 1on1 - 24x7 helpline to address mental health concerns of citizens in the wake of the novel coronavirus pandemic
  • Chhatrapati Shahu Maharaj Research Training and Human Development Institute (SARTHI) - Non-Profit government company for research, policy advocacy, and training for socio-economic and education development of Maratha and Kunbi community

Punjab

  • Digital Punjab - To create a single interface for all grievances with government

Rajasthan

  • Indira Rasoi Yojana - for providing nutritious food to the poor and needy twice a day at concessional rates

[In News: Latest]

  • July, 20
    • Maharashtra Deputy Chief Minister Ajit Pawar on Thursday announced a financial aid of ₹8 crore to SARTHI
  • Aug, 20
    • Haryana to link welfare schemes through ‘Parivar Pehchan Patra’
    • Delhi government launches Electric Vehicle Policy

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

Created: 29 Jun, 2020
Updated: 29 Jun, 2020

Senior Citizens

Pradhan Mantri Vaya Vandana Yojana (PMVVY), 2017

  • A social security scheme for senior citizens (60 years and above), implemented through the Life Insurance Corporation of India (LIC)
  • PMVVY gives a guaranteed payout of pension at a specified rate for 10 years.
  • LIC invests the corpus in the market and generates market-related returns. If such returns are lower than the guaranteed return, the differential is subsidised by the Union government.

Senior Citizen Savings Scheme (SCSS)

  • A social security scheme for senior citizens (60 years and above)
  • The maturity of this scheme is 5 years with the option to extend it for 3 more years. 

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

Created: 03 Jul, 2020
Updated: 03 Jul, 2020

Scheduled Caste

Scheduled Caste and Scheduled Tribe (Prevention of Atrocities) Act, 1989

  • Offence punishable from six months to five years
  • State government can confer on any officer of the State, the powers exercisable by a police officer, for prevention of any offence under the Act; and all officers of Police are to assist him.
  • Removal of person from 'Scheduled Areas' or 'tribal areas' as referred in Article 244, if a Special court is satisfied he is likely to commit an offence.
  • For every Special Court, the State Government shall specify a Special Public Prosecutor or appoint an advocate who has been in practice as an advocate for not less than seven years, for the purpose of conducting cases in that Court.
  • Central government may make rules for carrying out the purposes of Act

[In News]

  • June, 20
    • Tribals demand forester arrest under Scheduled Caste and Scheduled Tribe (Prevention of Atrocities) Act for burning down hut in M.P.

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

Created: 07 Jul, 2020
Updated: 07 Jul, 2020

Media And Press

Jammu and Kashmir Media Policy-2020

In Jammu and Kashmir, Department of Information & Public Relations (DIPR) serves as the single window for information and communication for the government including all government departments, public sector enterprises and autonomous bodies.

  • To foster a genuinely positive image of the Government based on performance
  • DIPR shall examine the content of the print, electronic and other forms of media for fake news, plagiarism and unethical or anti-national activities.
  • To create awareness among the people on government policies, plans and programmes 
  • To thwart mis-information, fake news and be alert to any attempts to use media to incite communal passions, preach violence, or to propagate any information prejudicial to the sovereignty and integrity of India.
  • Effective and healthy interaction to be initiated and maintained with the public on online and social platforms.
  • Background checks of journalists, paper, and news portals

[In News]

  • July, 20
    • Reporters and editors in J&K protested against new Media Policy 2020 over monitoring of every news

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

Created: 09 Jul, 2020
Updated: 09 Jul, 2020

Housing

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 sq.mt (from20sq.mt) 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

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

Created: 05 Aug, 2020
Updated: 05 Aug, 2020

Eastern States Policies And Schemes

Odisha

5T initiatives 

  • To transform governance in all departments by bringing about big, transformational, institutional-level changes, and not incremental makeovers.
  • Five ‘Ts’ that propel Odisha’s governance are transparency, teamwork, technology and timeliness, leading to transformation. 
  • Initiatives
    • Odisha State Tribal Museum has decided to offer people virtual journey. The tour is designed by Scheduled Castes and Scheduled Tribes Research and Training Institute (SCSTRTI)

Tribes

  • The State is home to 62 different tribal communities including 13 particularly vulnerable tribal groups (PVTGs), having most diverse tribal communities
  • Odisha has the third highest percentage of tribal population in the country after Madhya Pradesh and Maharastra
  • Major tribes include - Santhal, Zuang, Sawara, Karia, Khond, Kandh etc

[In News]

  • June, 20
    • Naveen Patnaik government adopted the ‘5T’ agenda to transform governance in all departments
  • Aug, 20
    • At a time when the new National Education Policy lays emphasis on mother tongue based instructions up to Class 5, Odisha seems to be at an advantage position to make it happen for its diverse tribal communities in the State. The State has been working on multilingual education (MLE) for more than past two decades.