Essential Facts (Prelims): 12th Feb, 2019


Category: Science & Technology

  • Scientists are hoping artificial intelligence can help identify and rescue child victims of sex trafficking via an app and more than a million crowdsourced pictures of hotel rooms.
  • Researchers launched an app in 2016 to collect photographs of 50,000 hotels around the world that could be matched up with online advertisements placed by traffickers, who often use selfies taken by their victims in hotel rooms.
  • Hotels-50K can be used to identify where trafficking victims are being held — and ultimately to rescue them.

India Wage Report

Category: International

  • This report has been released by the International Labour Organisation(ILO).
  • Real average daily wages for skilled agricultural workers increased just by 48 per cent from 1993–94 to 2011–12 while for legislators, senior officials and managers, it increased by 98 per cent over this nearly two-decade-long period, according to this report.


Category: Social sector

  • The proposed pension scheme for the unorganised sector workers — Pradhan Mantri Shram Yogi Maandhan (PMSYM) — with the government as a co-contributor, has put a big question mark on the continuity and growth of the existing flagship pension scheme, Atal Pension Yojana (APY), which is also targeted at the same segment of the population.
  • It has also raised questions about duplication of the government’s pension initiatives.
  • The new scheme, promising Rs 3,000 per month pension, will benefit around 42 crore workers in the sector.
  • In APY, previously known as Swavalamban Yojana and announced in the 2015 Budget, the full contribution is by the subscriber.
  • The new pension scheme has the government as a 50 per cent co-contributor which is not there in the APY.

Skill Loan Scheme

Category: Social sector

  • Government of India has launched “Skill Loan Scheme” with a view to support youth by providing a loan facility to individuals who intend to take up skill development courses as per the Skill Loan eligibility criteria.
  • Skill Loan Scheme is applicable to all the member banks of Indian Bank Association (IBA) and any other bank and financial institution including Micro Finance Institution regulated by Reserve Bank of India (RBI).
  • Bank of India being the lead bank of Ministry of Skill Development & Entrepreneurship has been the first bank to notify and implement such a Skill Loan Scheme.
  • The Loans are available in the range of Rs.5,000/- to Rs.1,50,000/-.


Category: Social sector

  • MSME Ministry is implementing the Prime Minister’s Employment Generation Programme (PMEGP).
  • PMEGP is a major credit-linked subsidy scheme since 2008-09, to set up micro enterprises and to generate employment in rural and urban areas of the country.
  • The maximum cost of the project under PMEGP scheme is Rs.25.00 lakhs for manufacturing sector units and Rs.10.00 lakhs for units under service sector.
  • Under the scheme, women entrepreneurs are covered under Special Category and are entitled to 25% and 35% subsidies for the project set up in urban and rural areas respectively.
  • About 30% projects have been setup by women out of total projects set up under PMEGP.

Swachh Shakti

Category: social sector

  • Swachh Shakti-2019 is a national event which aims to bring in to focus the leadership role played by rural women in Swachh Bharat Mission.
  • Women Sarpanches and Panches from all over the country will be attending the event.
  • Govt launched the Swachh Shakti program first in 2017 at Gandhinagar, Gujarat.
  • The second Swachh Shakti event, Swachh Shakti-2018 was held at Lucknow in Uttar Pradesh.
  • Now the third edition is being inaugurated from Kurukshetra.
  • Swachh Shakti is an example of how at the grass root level, rural women champions are acting as a change agent to mobilize the community and lead from the front women taking initiatives for a Swachh Bharat.
  • The movement is a part of ongoing activities under the aegis of the Swachh Bharat Mission, launched on October 2nd, 2014, at achieving a Clean and Open Defecation Free (ODF) India by 2nd October, 2019.