Do You Know – 24

Do You Know – 24

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ARTS OF THE MAURYAN PERIOD

Sixth century BCE marks the beginning of new religious and social movements in the Gangetic valley in the form of Buddhism and Jainism which were part of the shraman tradition. Both religions became popular as they opposed the varna and jati systems of the Hindu religion.

Religious practices had many dimensions and were not confined to just one particular mode of worship. Worship of Yakshas and mother goddesses were prevalent during that time. So, multiple forms of worship existed. Nevertheless, Buddhism became the most popular social and religious movement. Yaksha worship was very popular before and after the advent of Buddhism and it was assimilated in Buddhism and Jainism.

Stone pillars were erected all over the Mauryan Empire with inscriptions engraved on them. The Mauryan pillars are rock-cut pillars.

The top portion of the pillar was carved with capital figures like the bull, the lion, the elephant, etc.

The Mauryan pillar capital found at Sarnath popularly known as the Lion Capital is the finest example of Mauryan sculptural tradition

It is also our national emblem. It is carved with considerable care—voluminous roaring lion figures firmly standing on a circular abacus which is carved with the figures of a horse, a bull, a lion and an elephant.

This pillar capital symbolising Dhammachakrapravartana (the first sermon by the Buddha) has become a standard symbol of this great historical event in the life of the Buddha.

Monumental images of Yaksha, Yakhinis and animals, pillar columns with capital figures, rock-cut caves belonging to the third century BCE have been found in different parts of India. It shows the popularity of Yaksha worship and how it became part of figure representation in Buddhist and Jaina religious monuments.

One of the distinguishing elements in all these images is their polished surface. One of the finest examples is a Yakshi figure from Didarganj, Patna, which is tall and well-built. It shows sensitivity towards depicting the human physique. The image has a polished surface.

Depiction of a monumental rock-cut elephant at Dhauli in Orissa shows modelling in round with linear rhythm. It also has Ashokan rock-edict.

The rock-cut cave carved at Barabar hills near Gaya in Bihar is known as the Lomus Rishi cave. The facade of the cave is decorated with the semicircular chaitya arch as the entrance. The elephant frieze carved in high relief on the chaitya arch shows considerable movement. The cave was patronised by Ashoka for the Ajivika sect.

It is important to note that the stupas were constructed over the relics of the Buddha at Rajagraha, Vaishali, Kapilavastu, Allakappa, Ramagrama, Vethadipa, Pava, Kushinagar and Pippalvina.

The textual tradition also mentions construction of various other stupas on the relics of the Buddha at several places including.

The textual tradition also mentions construction of various other stupas on the relics of the Buddha at several places including Avanti and Gandhara which are outside the Gangetic valley.

Stupa, vihara and chaitya are part of Buddhist and Jaina monastic complexes but the largest number belongs to the Buddhist religion. One of the best examples of the structure of a stupa in the third century BCE is at Bairat in Rajasthan. It is a very grand stupa having a circular mound with a circumambulatory path.

The great stupa at Sanchi (which will be discussed later) was built with bricks during the time of Ashoka and later it was covered with stone and many new additions were made.

There are very few inscriptions mentioning the names of artisans.

The Lion Capital discovered more than a hundred years ago at Sarnath, near Varanasi, is generally referred to as Sarnath Lion Capital. This is one of the finest examples of sculpture from the Mauryan period. Built in commemoration of the historical event of the first sermon or the Dhammachakrapravartana by the Buddha at Sarnath, the capital was built by Ashoka.

The capital originally consisted of five component parts: (i) the shaft (which is broken in many parts now), (ii) a lotus bell base, (iii) a drum on the bell base with four animals proceeding clockwise, (iv) the figures of four majestic addorsed lions, and (v) the crowning element, Dharamchakra, a large wheel, was also a part of this pillar. However, this wheel is lying in a broken condition and is displayed in the site museum at Sarnath. The capital without the crowning wheel and the lotus base has been adopted as the National Emblem of Independent India.

A lion capital has also been found at Sanchi but is in a dilapidated condition.

The life-size standing image of a Yakshini holding a chauri (flywhisk) from Didargunj near modern Patna is another good example of the sculptural tradition of the Mauryan Period.The chauri is held in the right hand whereas the left hand is broken. The lower garment has been rendered with great care. Every fold of the garment on the legs is shown by protruding lines clinging to the legs, which also create a somewhat transparent effect.

In the subsequent century, stupas were elaborately built with certain additions like the enclosing of the circumambulatory path with railings and sculptural decoration.

The stupa consists of a cylindrical drum and a circular anda with a harmika and chhatra on the top which remain consistent throughout with minor variations and changes in shape and size. Apart from the circumambulatory path, gateways were added.

Image of Stupa worship can be found at Bharhut.

During the early phase of Buddhism, Buddha is depicted symbolically through footprints, stupas, lotus throne, chakra, etc.

Gradually narrative became a part of the Buddhist tradition. Thus events from the life of the Buddha, the Jataka stories, were depicted on the railings and torans of the stupas.

Among the Jataka stories that are frequently depicted are Chhadanta Jataka, Vidurpundita Jataka, Ruru Jataka, Sibi Jataka, Vessantara Jataka and Shama Jataka.

Do You Know – 23

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ARTS OF THE INDUS VALLEY

The art of bronze-casting was practised on a wide scale by the Harappans. Their bronze statues were made using the ‘lost wax’ technique.

The Indus Valley people made terracotta images also but compared to the stone and bronze statues the terracotta representations of human form are crude in the Indus valley.

The purpose of producing seals was mainly commercial. It appears that the seals were also used as amulets, carried on the persons of their owners, perhaps as modern-day identity cards.

The standard Harappan seal was a square plaque 2×2 square inches, usually made from the soft river stone, steatite. Every seal is engraved in a pictographic script which is yet to be deciphered.

Some seals have also been found in gold and ivory.

They all bear a great variety of motifs, most often of animals including those of the bull, with or without the hump, the elephant, tiger, goat and also monsters.

Sometimes trees or human figures were also depicted. The most remarkable seal is the one depicted with a figure in the centre and animals around. This seal is generally identified as the Pashupati Seal by some scholars whereas some identify it as the female deity. This seal depicts a human figure seated cross-legged. An elephant and a tiger are depicted to the right side of the seated figure, while on the left a rhinoceros and a buffalo are seen. In addition to these animals two antelopes are shown below the seat.

Square or rectangular copper tablets, with an animal or a human figure on one side and an inscription on the other, or an inscription on both sides have also been found.

Unlike inscriptions on seals which vary in each case, inscriptions on the copper tablets seem to be associated with the animals portrayed on them.

The Indus Valley pottery consists chiefly of very fine wheel made wares, very few being hand-made. Plain pottery is more common than painted ware.

Miniature vessels, mostly less than half an inch in height are, particularly, so marvellously crafted as to evoke admiration.

Perforated pottery includes a large hole at the bottom and small holes all over the wall, and was probably used for straining liquor.

It is evident from the discovery of a large number of spindles and spindle whorls in the houses of the Indus Valley that spinning of cotton and wool was very common. The fact that both the rich and the poor practised spinning is indicated by finds of whorls made of the expensive faience as also of the cheap pottery and shell.

Men and women wore two separate pieces of attire similar to the dhoti and shawl. The shawl covered the left shoulder passing below the right shoulder.

Do You Know – 22

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Under this section we will list out significant facts about

PREHISTORIC ROCK PAINTINGS

 

The distant past when there was no paper or language or the written word, and hence no books or written documents, is called prehistory.

Painting and drawing were the oldest art forms practised by human beings to express themselves, using the cave walls as their canvas.

They may have drawn and painted to make their homes more colourful and beautiful or to keep a visual record of their day-to-day life, like some of us who maintain a diary.

The subjects of their drawings were human figures, human activities, geometric designs and symbols.

Remnants of rock paintings have been found on the walls of the caves situated in Madhya Pradesh, Uttar Pradesh, Andhra Pradesh, Karnataka and Bihar.

The rock shelters on banks of the River Suyal at Lakhudiyar in Uttarakhand bear these prehistoric paintings. Lakhudiyar literally means one lakh caves. The paintings here can be divided into three categories: man, animal and geometric patterns in white, black and red ochre.

Humans are represented in stick-like forms.

Wavy lines, rectangle-filled geometric designs, and groups of dots can also be seen here.

One of the interesting scenes depicted here is of hand-linked dancing human figures.

There is some superimposition of paintings. The earliest are in black; over these are red ochre paintings and the last group comprises white paintings.

The richest paintings are reported from the Vindhya ranges of Madhya Pradesh.

Among these the largest and most spectacular rock-shelter is located in the Vindhya hills at Bhimbetka in Madhya Pradesh.

The themes of paintings found here are of great variety, ranging from mundane events of daily life in those times to sacred and royal images.

Painting showing a man being hunted by a beast can be found at

The paintings of the Upper Palaeolithic phase are linear representations, in green and dark red, of huge animal figures, such as bisons, elephants, tigers, rhinos and boars besides stick-like human figures. The green paintings are of dancers and the red ones of hunters.

  • Mesolitihic Period :
    • The largest number of paintings belong to Period II that covers the Mesolithic paintings.
    • During this period the themes multiply but the paintings are smaller in size. Hunting scenes predominate.
    • Elephant, bison, tiger, boar, deer, antelope, leopard, panther, rhinoceros, fish, frog, lizard, squirrel and at times birds are also depicted.
    • In some pictures, animals are chasing men. In others they are being chased and hunted by men.
    • Though animals were painted in a naturalistic style, humans were depicted only in a stylistic manner.
    • Women are painted both in the nude and clothed. The young and the old equally find place in these paintings. Children are painted running, jumping and playing. Community dances provide a common theme.
    • In many of the rock-shelters we find hand prints, fist prints, and dots made by the fingertips.
  • Chalcolithic Period
    • The paintings of this period reveal the association, contact, and mutual exchange of requirements of the cave dwellers of this area with settled agricultural communities of the Malwa plains.
    • Pottery and metal tools are also shown. But the vividness and vitality of the earlier periods disappear from these paintings.
    • The artists of Bhimbetka used many colours, including various shades of white, yellow, orange, red ochre, purple, brown, green and black. But white and red were their favourite colours. The paints were made by grinding various rocks and minerals. They got red from haematite (known as geru in India).
    • The green came from a green variety of a stone called chalcedony.
    • White might have been made out of limestone.

It is believed that the colours have remained intact because of the chemical reaction of the oxide present on the surface of the rocks.

The artists here made their paintings on the walls and ceilings of the rock shelters. Some of the paintings are reported from the shelters where people lived. But some others were made in places which do not seem to have been living spaces at all. Perhaps these places had some religious importance.

One may wonder why early human beings chose to paint on a rock in such an uncomfortable position. The paintings made at these places were perhaps for people to be able to notice them from a distance.

At Bhimbetka, in some places, there are as many as 20 layers of paintings, one on top of another. Maybe, this was because the artist did not like his creation and painted another painting on the previous one, or some of the paintings and places were considered sacred or special or this was because the area may have been used by different generations of people at different times.

India Year Book 2018 – Summary – CULTURE & TOURISM

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Culture and Tourism  (INDIA 2018)

 

Lalit Kala Akademi, the National Academy of Art, was set up in 1954. Lalit Kala Akademi is the government’s apex cultural body in the field of visual arts in India. It is an autonomous body, which is fully funded by the Ministry of Culture.

In 1945, the Asiatic Society of Bengal submitted a proposal for the creation of a National Cultural Trust consisting of three academies-an academy of dance, drama and music; an academy .of letters and an academy of art and architecture. It led to the creation of three national academies after Independence.

The national Academy named Sangeet Natak Akademi, was the first of these entities to be established by a resolution of the Ministry of Education. Being the apex body specializing in the performing arts, the Akademi also advises and assists the Government of India in formulating and implementing policies and programmes in the field of the performing arts.

The National School of Drama (NSD)-one of the foremost theatre institutions in the world and the only one of its kind in India was set up by Sangeet Natak Akademi in 1959. Later in 1975, it became an autonomous organization, totally financed by Department of Culture.

Sahitya Akademi, India’s National Academy of Letters promotes literature in 24 languages of India recognized by it. It organizes programmes, confers Awards and Fellowships on writers in Indian languages and publishes books throughout the year and in 24 recognized languages.

Swadesh Darshan scheme has a vision to develop theme based tourist circuits on the principles of high tourist value, competitiveness and sustainability in an integrated manner by synergizing efforts to focus on needs and concerns of all stakeholders to enrich tourist experience and enhance employment opportunities. Under the scheme thirteen thematic circuits have been identified for development, namely: North-East India Circuit, Buddhist Circuit, Himalayan Circuit, Coastal Circuit, Krishna Circuit, Desert Circuit, Tribal Circuit, Eco Circuit, Wildlife Circuit, Rural Circuit, Spiritual Circuit, Ramayana Circuit and Heritage Circuit.

Under PRASAD scheme, 25 sites of religious significance have been identified for development namely Amaravati (Andhra Pradesh), Amritsar (Punjab), Ajmer (Rajasthan), Ayodhya (Uttar Pradesh), Badrinath (Uttarakhand), Dwarka (Gujarat), Deoghar (Jharkhand), Belur (West Bengal), Gaya (Bihar) , Guruvayoor (Kerala), Hazratbal (Jammu & Kashmir), Kamakhya (Assam), Kanchipuram (Tamil Nadu), Katra (Jammu & Kashmir), Kedarnath (Uttarakhand), Mathura (Uttar Pradesh), Patna (Bihar), Puri (Odisha), Srisailam (Andhra Pradesh), Somnath (Gujarat), Tirupati (Andhra Pradesh), Trimbakeshwar (Maharashtra), Ujjain (Madhya Pradesh), Varanasi (Uttar Pradesh) and Vellankani (Tamil Nadu).

India Year Book 2018 – Summary – FOOD & CIVIL SUPPLIES

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Food and Civil Supplies  (INDIA 2018)

 

Before each Rabi/Kharif crop season, central government announces the Minimum Support Prices (MSP), based on the recommendations of Commission for Agricultural Costs and Prices (CACP), which takes into consideration the cost of various agricultural inputs and the reasonable margin for the farmers for their produce.

The stock of foodgrains (rice and wheat) in the Central Pool as in July, 2017 was 533 lakh tonnes (210 lakh tonnes of rice and 322 lakh tonnes of wheat).

National Food Security

  • In order to further strengthen the commitment to food security of the people, Government of India enacted the National Food Security Act, 2013 (NFSA), which come into force from 2013.
  • The Act aims to provide for food and nutritional security in human life cycle approach, by ensuring access to adequate quantity of quality food at affordable prices to people to live a life with dignity. The Act marks a paradigm shift in approach to food security— from welfare to a rights based one.
  • The Act provides for coverage of upto 75 per cent of the rural population and upto 50 per cent of the urban population for receiving subsidized foodgrains under Targeted Public Distribution System, thus covering about two-thirds of the population.
  • This coverage for receiving highly subsidized foodgrains is under two categories—households covered under the Antyodaya Anna Yojana (AAY) and the remaining households as priority households.
  • AAY was launched in 2000 to provide focus on food security of the poorest of the poor, and covers 2.5 crore households. Such households are entitled under the Act to receive 35 kg. of foodgrains per households per month, @ ₹ 1/2/3 per kg. for coarse grains/wheat/rice.
  • Priority households are entitled to receive 5 kg. of foodgrains per person per month at the above mentioned highly subsidized prices.
  • The Act also contains provisions for setting up of grievance redressal mechanism at the district and state levels. Separate provisions have also been made for ensuring transparency and accountability

The Mid Day Meal Scheme is implemented by the Ministry of Human Resource Development. The scheme covers students of primary and upper primary classes in the government schools/schools aided by government and the schools run by local bodies. Foodgrains are supplied free of cost @ 100 grams for primary stage and @ 150 grams for upper primary stage per child per school day where cooked/processed hot meal is being served or 3 kgs per student per month where raw foodgrains are distributed.

The SABLA scheme was launched in 2010 by merging two schemes namely, Nutrition Programme and Adolescent Girls (NPAG) and Kishori Shakti Yojana (KSY) into a single scheme. The scheme aims at empowering adolescent girls of 11-18 years by improvement of their nutritional and health status and upgrading various skills useful to them. It also aims at equipping the girls on family welfare, health hygiene, etc. and guiding them on existing public services. The requirement of foodgrains under the scheme for nutrition is @ 100 grams of grains per beneficiary per day for 300 days in a year.

Annapurna Scheme is implemented by the Ministry of Rural Development. Indigent senior citizens of 65 years of age or above who are not getting pension under the National Old Age Pension Scheme (NOAPS), are provided 10 kgs. of foodgrains per person per month free of cost under the scheme.

In addition to maintaining buffer stocks and for meeting the requirement of the Targeted Public Distribution System (TPDS) and Other Welfare Schemes (OWS), the FCI sells excess stocks of wheat and rice from the Central Pool at predetermined prices in the open market from time to time under Open Market Sale Scheme (Domestic) through e-tender to enhance the supply especially during the lean season especially in the deficit regions.

FCI has its own grid of covered godowns in all states to safely stock the central pool foodgrains. In addition, it hires capacity from Central Warehousing Corporation (CWC) and state agencies like State Warehousing Corporations as well as private parties.

In order to cope with increasing production and procurement of foodgrains, the Government is implementing Private Entrepreneurs Guarantee (PEG) scheme for augmenting the covered storage capacity in the country. Under the PEG scheme, which was launched in 2008, godowns are constructed in PPP mode and the land and construction cost is borne by the selected partners. FCI on its part guarantees 10 year usage of storage capacities to the private investors and 9 years to CWC and SWCs. Locations for construction of godown are identified by the FCI on the basis of recommendations of state level committees to cover the gaps in storage.

India is the largest consumer and the second largest producer of sugar in the world.

Under the FRP system, the farmers are not required to wait till the end of the season or for any announcement of the profits by sugar mills or the government. The new system also assures margins on account of profit and risk to farmers, irrespective of the fact whether sugar mills generate profit or not and is not dependent on the performance of any individual sugar mill.

Ethanol is an agro-based product, mainly produced from a by-product of the sugar industry, namely molasses. In years of surplus production of sugarcane, when prices are depressed, the sugar industry is unable to make timely payment of cane price to farmers. The Ethanol Blended Petrol Programme (EBP) seeks to achieve blending of Ethanol with motor spirit with a view to reducing pollution, conserve foreign exchange and increase value addition in the sugar industry enabling them to clear cane price arrears of farmers. The central government has scaled up blending targets from 5 to 10 per cent under the EBP.

Food processing sector has been identified as one of the priority sector under ‘Make in India’. With a view to attract investment to this sector, Ministry of Food Processing Industries has been implementing schemes for development of infrastructure for promoting food processing industries. Mega food parks with common utility like road, electricity, water supply, sewage facility and common processing facility like pulping, packaging, cold storage, dry storage and logistics are being promoted in areas with strong agricultural resource base.

Government of India approved a new Central Sector Scheme – Kisan Sampada Yojana – (Scheme for Agro-Marine Processing and Development of Agro-Processing Clusters) in May, 2017 with an outlay of ₹ 6,000 crore for the period 2016-20 coterminous with the 14th Finance Commission cycle. It is a comprehensive package which will result in creation of modern infrastructure with efficient supply chain management from farm gate to retail outlet. It will not only provide a big boost to the growth of food processing sector in the country but also help in providing better prices to farmers and is a big step towards doubling of farmers income, creating huge employment opportunities especially in the rural areas, reducing wastage of agricultural produce, increasing the processing level and enhancing the export of the processed foods.

India Year Book 2018 – Summary – ENERGY

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Energy ( INDIA 2018 )

Nathpa Jhakri Power Project is in Himachal Pradesh.

Ultra Mega Power Projects (UMPPs) are of 4,000 MW each.

Mega power policy was introduced in 1995. The aim of this policy was to derive economies of scale by setting up large size power plants especially in the private sector.

Automatic approval (RBI route) for cent percent foreign equity is permitted in generation (except atomic energy), transmission and distribution and trading in power sector without any upper ceiling on the quantum of investment.

Government of India launched a new scheme namely “Deendayal Upadhyaya Gram Jyoti Yojana” (DDUGJY) with the following objectives

To separate agriculture and non-agriculture feeders for judicious rostering of supply to agricultural and non-agricultural consumers in rural areas strengthening and augmentation of sub transmission and distribution infrastructure in rural areas metering in rural areas.

The National Electricity Fund (NEF) was set up in 2012 to provide interest subsidy on loans disbursed to the State Power Utilities, Distribution Companies (DISCOMS), both in public and private sector, for the loans taken from banks/financial institutions, to improve the infrastructure in distribution sector.

UDAY Scheme was launched in 2015 for a sustainable solution to the operational and financial inefficiencies of DISCOMs across the country, through targeted interventions in the form of lower interest costs, reduction of cost of power, increased revenues and improved operational efficiencies. UDAY is voluntary scheme for participation and 26 states and 1 union territory have joined the scheme.

Government launched a new Hydrocarbon Exploration and Licensing Policy (HELP) in 2016.

In a bid to ensure universal coverage of clean cooking gas in the country, the Government launched Pradhan Mantri Ujjwala Yojana (PMUY). Under PMUY, 5 crore LPG connections were to be provided to BPL families.

The Government launched a scheme ‘PAHAL’ for direct transfer of LPG subsidy to consumers all over the country from 2015. This is the largest direct cash transfer scheme in the world as recognized by Guinness Book of World Records. Under this scheme, LPG is being sold to consumers at the market rate while the subsidy is directly credited to their bank accounts as per entitlement. Objective of scheme is to ensure that the subsidy on LPG reach the intended beneficiaries.

The Government also launched ‘Give-It-Up’ Campaign. Under it, well-off LPG consumers have been asked to voluntarily give up LPG subsidy. Against each ‘Give-It-Up’ consumer, one security deposit-free connection is given to a BPL family (Give Back Scheme).

The Administered Pricing Mechanism (APM) or cost plus pricing for petroleum products which was introduced in 1976 was abolished from 2002, consequent to the de-regulation of the oil sector in India. The Government notified that pricing of all petroleum products except PDS kerosene and domestic LPG, would be market determined. In June 2006, based on the recommendations of the Rangarajan Committee, the Government changed the pricing mechanism for petrol and diesel from import parity to trade parity (trade parity being the weighted average of import parity and export parity prices in the ratio of 80:20) while the pricing of PDS kerosene and domestic LPG continues on import parity basis.

Indian Oil Corporation (Indian Oil) is India’s flagship national oil company with business interests encompassing the entire hydrocarbon value chain from refining, pipeline transportation and marketing of petroleum products to exploration and production of crude oil and gas, marketing of natural gas, petrochemicals, renewable energy and now into nuclear energy.

802 billion tonnes of coal reserves have been estimated by the Geological Survey of India. The reserves have been found mainly in Jharkhand, Odisha, Chhattisgarh, West Bengal, Madhya Pradesh, Telangana and Maharashtra.

The Lignite Reserves in the country have been estimated at around 45 billion tonnes by the Geological Survey of India. The major deposits are located in Tamil Nadu, followed by Rajasthan, Gujarat, Kerala, West Bengal, Jammu & Kashmir and union territory of Puducherry.

Coal India Limited (CIL) is a ‘Maha Ratna’ company under the Ministry of Coal, with headquarters at Kolkata, West Bengal. CIL is the single largest coal producing company in the world. CIL operates through 82 mining areas spread over eight states of India.

At present around 70 per cent of India’s power generation capacity is based on coal.

In addition, there is an increasing dependence on imported oil, which is leading to imports of around 33 per cent of India’s total energy needs.

India has taken a voluntary commitment of reducing emission intensity of its GDP by 33-35 percent from 2005 levels by 2030.

At the 21st Conference of the Parties to the United Nations Framework Convention on Climate Change (UNFCCC) held at Paris, France, India committed to achieve about 40 per cent cumulative electric power installed capacity from non-fossil fuel based energy resources by 2030 with the help of transfer of technology and low cost international finance including from Green Climate Fund (GCF).

India has an estimated renewable energy potential of about 900 GW from commercially exploitable sources viz. Wind – 102 GW (at 80 metre mast height); small hydro – 20 GW; bioenergy – 25 GW; and 750 GW solar power, assuming 3% wasteland is made available.

 

 

India Year Book 2018 – Summary – HEALTH

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Health  (INDIA 2018)

 

Mission Indradhanush was launched in 2014 to cover all those children who have been partially vaccinated or not vaccinated during routine immunization rounds. The objective the schemes is to increase full immunization coverage to at least 90 per cent children by 2020.

Measles Rubella (MR) vaccine targets children from 9 months up to 15 years of age.

Rotavirus Vaccine is for diarrhea caused by Rotavirus.

Pneumococcal Conjugate Vaccine (PCV) is provided to reduce child deaths due to pneumonia – which is a major cause of child mortality.

“MAA-Mother’s Absolute Affection” which is an intensified programme was launched in 2016 in an attempt to bring undiluted focus on promotion of breastfeeding.

Janani Shishu Suraksha Karyakram (JSSK) scheme entitles all pregnant women delivering in public health institutions to absolutely free and no expense delivery including caesarean section.

Janani Suraksha Yojana (JSY) is a safe motherhood intervention under the National Health Mission. The objective is to reduce maternal and neonatal mortality by promoting institutional delivery among poor pregnant women.

Mission Parivar Vikas was launched for substantially increasing the access to contraceptives and family planning services in 146 high fertility districts of seven high focus states (Uttar Pradesh, Bihar, Rajasthan, Madhya Pradesh, Chhattisgarh, Jharkhand and Assam) with TFR of 3 and above.

Pradhan Mantri Surakshit Matritva Abhiyan aims to provide assured, comprehensive and quality antenatal care, free of cost, universally to all pregnant women on the 9th of every month. PMSMA guarantees a minimum package of antenatal care services to women in their 2nd/3rd trimesters of pregnancy at designated government health facilities. The programme follows a systematic approach for engagement with private sector which includes motivating private practitioners to volunteer for the campaign; developing strategies for generating awareness and appealing to the private sector to participate in the Abhiyan at government health facilities.

Kayakalp awards were launched to promote cleanliness, hygiene and infection control practices in public health facilities. Under this initiative awards and commendation certificates are given to public healthcare facilities that show exemplary performance i.e., meeting standards of protocols of cleanliness, hygiene and infection control.

The Pradhan Mantri Swasthya Swasthya Suraksha Yojana (PMSSY) envisages creation of tertiary healthcare capacity in medical education, research and clinical care, in the underserved areas of the country. It aims at correcting regional imbalances in the availability of affordable/reliable tertiary healthcare services and also augmenting facilities for quality medical education in the country. PMSSY has two components – setting up of new AIIMS like institutes in underserved regions of the country: and upgradation of existing Govt Medical Colleges (GMCs).

The objectives of Rashtriya Swasthya Bima Yojana (RSBY) is to provide cashless treatment in any public or private empanelled hospitals for most of the diseases that requires hospitalization, which will give improved access to quality health care to the beneficiaries. It has defined BPL and 11 categories of unorganized workers (MGNREGS beneficiaries, building and construction workers, railway porters, domestic workers, street vendors, beedi workers, taxi drivers, rickshaw pullers, rag pickers, mine workers and sanitation workers)

Rashtriya Arogya Nidhi (RAN) was set up in 1997 to provide financial assistance to the patients living below poverty line, who are suffering from major life threatening diseases, to receive medical treatment at Government hospitals. The financial assistance to such patients is released in the form of “one time grant” to the Medical Superintendent of the hospital in which the treatment is being received.

Ayurveda’ literally means “Science of Life”. Ayurveda is evolved from the various Vedic hymns rooted in the fundamental philosophies about life, disease and health. The Charak Samhita and Sushruta Samhita developed around 2500 BC are the main treaties of Ayurveda fully available today. According to Ayurveda, health is considered as a pre-requisite for achieving the goals of life i.e., Dharma, Artha, Kama and Moksha. Ayurveda takes an integrated view of the physical, mental, spiritual and social aspects of human beings and about the interrelationships between these aspects.

Naturopathy is a science of health and healing and a drug less therapy based on well founded philosophy. It has its own concept of health and disease and principles of treatment. Naturopathy is a system of medicine that advocates harmonious living with constructive principles of nature on physical, mental, moral and spiritual plane.

The Unani system of medicine originated in Greece and passed through many countries before establishing itself in India during the medieval period. It is based on well-established knowledge and practices relating to the promotion of positive health and prevention of disease. The fusion of traditional knowledge of ancient civilizations like Egypt, Arabia, Iran, China, Syria and India. It emphasizes the use of naturally occurring mostly herbal medicines and some medicines of animals, marine and mineral origin.

The Siddha System of medicine is one of the ancient systems of medicine in India having its close links with Dravidian culture. The term Siddha means achievements and Siddhars are those who have achieved perfection in medicine. Eighteen Siddhars are said to have contributed towards the systematic development of this system and recorded their experiences in Tamil language.

Sowa-Rigpa is among the oldest surviving health traditions of the world with a living history of more than 2500 years. It has been in vogue and practised in Himalayan regions throughout particularly in Leh and Laddakh (J&K), Himachal Pradesh, Arunachal Pradesh, Sikkim, Darjeeling, etc. SowaRigpa is effective in managing chronic diseases like asthma, bronchitis, arthritis, etc.

India Year Book 2018 – Summary – WELFARE

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Welfare ( INDIA 2018 )

In order to protect the interests of Scheduled Tribes with regard to land alienation and other social factors, provisions of the “Fifth Schedule” and “Sixth Schedule” have been enshrined in the Constitution.

The Fifth Schedule under Article 244 (1) of Constitution defines “Scheduled Areas” as such areas as the President may by Order declare to be Scheduled Areas after consultation with the Governor of the state.

The Sixth Schedule under Article 244 (2) of the Constitution relates to those areas in the states of Assam, Meghalaya, Tripura and Mizoram which are declared as “Tribal Areas” and provides for District Councils and/or Regional Councils for such Areas. These Councils have been conferred with wide ranging legislative, judicial and executive powers.

  • The criteria for declaring any area as a “Scheduled Area” under the Fifth Schedule are:
    • preponderance of tribal population,
    • compactness and reasonable size of the area,
    • a viable administrative entity such as a district, block or taluk, an
    • economic backwardness of the area as compared to neighbouring areas.
  • The specification of “Scheduled Areas” in relation to a state is done by a notified Order of the President, after consultation with the state governments concerned. The same applies for altering, increasing, decreasing, incorporating new areas, or rescinding any orders relating to “Scheduled Areas”
  • The advantages of Scheduled Areas are that:

(a) The Governor of a state, which has Scheduled Areas, is empowered to make regulations in respect of the following:

  • prohibit or restrict transfer of land from tribal people;
  • regulate the business of money lending to the members of Scheduled Tribes.

 

In making any such regulation, the Governor may repeal or amend any Act of Parliament or of the Legislature of the state which is applicable to the area in question.

(b) The Governor may be through public notification direct that any particular Act of Parliament or of the Legislature of the state, shall not apply to a Scheduled Area or any part thereof in the state or shall apply to such area subject to such exceptions and modifications as he may specify.

(c) the Governor of a state having Scheduled Areas therein, shall annually, or whenever so required by the President of India, make a report to the President regarding the administration of the Scheduled Areas in that state and the executive power of the Union shall extend to the giving of directions to the State as to the administration of the said area.

(d) Tribes Advisory Council (TAC) shall be established in states having Scheduled Areas. The role of TAC is to advise the state government on matters pertaining to the welfare and advancement of the scheduled tribes in the state as may be referred to it by the Governor. The TAC will consist of not more than twenty members of whom about 3/4 are from STMLAs. The TAC may also be established in any state having scheduled tribes but not Scheduled Areas on the direction of the President of India

(e) The Provisions of the Panchayats (Extension to Scheduled Areas) Act, 1996 (PESA), vide which the provisions of Panchayats, contained in Part IX of the Constitution, were extended to Scheduled Areas, also contain special provisions for the benefit of Scheduled Tribes.

  • The Sixth Schedule under Article 244 of the Constitution identifies Autonomous districts in the tribal areas in Assam, Meghalaya, Tripura and Mizoram. It also makes provisions for recognition of Autonomous Regions within these Autonomous Districts.
  • The district or regional councils are empowered to make rules with the approval of the Governor with regard to matters like establishment, construction or management of primary schools, dispensaries, markets, cattle ponds, ferries, fisheries, roads, road transport and waterways in the district.
  • The Autonomous Councils of the North Cachar Hills and Karbi Anglong have been granted additional powers to make laws with respect to other matters like secondary education, agriculture, social security and social insurance, public health and sanitation, minor irrigation etc.

The Councils have also been conferred powers under the Civil Procedure Code and Criminal Procedure Code for trial of certain suits and offences, as also the powers of a revenue authority for their area for collection of revenue and taxes and other powers for the regulation and management of natural resources.

In terms of Article 342(1), the President may, with respect to any state or union territory, and where it is a state, after consultation with the Governor thereof, notify tribes or tribal communities or parts thereof as scheduled tribes.

Beti Bachao Beti Padhao is one the flagship programmes of the Government, launched in 2015 to address the declining Child Sex Ratio (CSR) and address other related issues of disempowerment of women. CSR is the number of girls against 1000 boys in the age group of 0-6 years.

It is a triministerial, convergent effort of Ministries of Women and Child Development, Health and Family Welfare and Human Resource Development with focus on the following: awareness and advocacy campaign; multi-sectoral action in select 161 districts (low on CSR); enabling girls’ education; effective enforcement of pre-conception and pre natal diagnostic techniques (PC&PNDT) Act.

The scheme is envisaged to bring an improvement in sex ratio at birth (SRB) in the short term while child sex ratio (CSR) with manifestation of over-all development such as improved health and nutrition, gender parity in education, better sanitation, opportunities and removal of asymmetries between the genders is endeavored in the long term.

Government announced Pan India implementation of maternity benefit programme to eligible pregnant women and lactating mothers. The programme was named as Pradhan Mantri Matru Vandana Yojana (PMMVY). The scheme envisages providing cash incentive amounting to ₹ 5,000/-directly to the bank/post office account of PW and LM in DBT mode during pregnancy and lactation in response to individual fulfilling specific conditions.

Women who suffer violence face huge problems in getting justice as they have to register FIRs and engage lawyers to fight court cases. In many cases the medical evidence gets destroyed due to lack of knowledge or pressure from perpetrators. As a result, very often women suffer violence but do not complain. In order to assist such women, a new initiative to establish One Stop Centres country (OSC) was conceived and is being implemented across the country since April 2015. A woman who has suffered violence can get medical, police, legal and psychological counselling assistance at these centres. These also have a place for them to temporarily stay in case their condition so warrants. The OSC, popularly known by the name of Sakhi will be integrated with 181 and other existing helplines. The first Centre was inaugurated at Raipur, Chhattisgarh.The management committee headed by District Collector is responsible for the day to day operation of the OSC.

The broad mandate of Mahila Police Volunteers (MPVs) is to report to authorities/police the incidences of violence against women such as domestic violence, child marriage, dowry harassment and violence faced by women in public spaces. Haryana has become the first state to operationalise the Mahila Police Volunteers scheme.

Taking note of the long lasting damage or disfigurement on the life of a person attacked with acid as well as constant medical attention, MWCD requested Ministry of Social Justice and Empowerment to include acid attack induced damage or disfigurement within the list of specified disabilities.

The initiative of Gender Champions is being implemented through educational institutions to sensitize young students and create awareness on laws, legislations. legal rights and life skills education

Rashtriya Mahila Kosh (RMK) is a society, registered under the Societies Registration Act, 1860 and an apex micro-finance organization established in 1993. The main objective of RMK is to provide micro-credit to poor women.The target beneficiaries are entrepreneurs from different economic activities ranging from traditional and modern handicraft to small business such as petty shop, etc.

Children are often unable to complain about sexual abuse because it is usually done by someone known to them. In order to provide them with a safe and anonymous mode of making a complaint, an internet based facility, e-Box, has been provided. Here, a child or anyone on his/her behalf can file a complaint with minimal details. As soon as the complaint is filed, a trained counsellor immediately contacts the child and provides assistance. The counsellor also registers a formal complaint on behalf of the child wherever required. POCSO e-box was launched in 2016.

National Nutrition Mission (NNM) is proposed to achieve improvement in nutritional status of children (O-6years), adolescent girls and pregnant women and lactating mothers in a time bound manner over a period of three years with the objectives of preventing and reducing under-nutrition in children (0-3 years); reducing the prevalence of anaemia among young children (6-59 months); reducing the prevalence of anaemia among women and adolescent girls (15-49 years) and reducing low birth weight.

India Year Book 2018 – Summary – WATER

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Water  ( INDIA 2018 )

 

The Prime Minister is the Chairman of the National Water Resources Council (NWRC).

The Accelerated Irrigation Benefits Programme (AIBP) was launched in 1996-97 to provide central assistance to major/medium irrigation projects in the country, with the objective to accelerate implementation of such projects which were beyond resource capability of the states or were in advanced stage of completion.

During 2015-16, Pradhan Mantri Krishi Sinchayee Yojana (PMKSY) was launched with an aim to enhance physical access of water on farm ( Har Khet Ko Pani ) and expand cultivable area under assured irrigation, improve on farm water use efficiency, introduce sustainable water conservation practices, etc.

Jal Kranti Abhiyan’ was launched in 2015 simultaneously at Jaipur, Shimla and Jhansi. Jal Kranti Abhiyan is being observed to spread awareness on water conservation and management in the country through a holistic and integrated approach involving all stakeholders and making it a mass movement.

India Year Book 2018 – Summary – TRANSPORT

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Transport ( INDIA 2018 )

The Indian railway network is divided into 17 Zones

National Highways / Expressway : 1,03,933 km; State Highways :1,61,487 km

Setu Bharatam is a programme that aims to ensure road safety by making all national highways free of railway level crossings, by 2019, by building railway over bridges/ under passes.

Bharatmala is an upcoming umbrella programme that will subsume unfinished parts of NHDP and also focus on the new initiatives like development of Border and International connectivity roads, economic corridors development, inter corridor and feeder routes, national corridors efficiency improvements, coastal and port connectivity roads, and Green field Express ways.

National highways constitute just two per cent of the country’s road network but carry 40 per cent of the traffic load.

Approximately 95 per cent of the country’s trade by volume and 68 per cent by value is moved through maritime transport.

Erstwhile Kandla is now Deendayal port.

Kolkata Port is the only riverine major port in the country.

Port of Visakhapatnam is a natural harbour.

Kamarajar Port has the distinction of being the only corporate port amongst the major ports administered by the central government.

India has one of the longest navigable and inland water networks. However, cargo transport through these inland waterways is, presently less than 1 per cent of the total cargo movement in the country.

Inland Waterways Authority of India (IWAI) was constituted in 1986, for the development and regulation of inland waterways for shipping and navigation.

111 inland waterways have been declared as ‘National Waterways’ under the National Waterways Act, 2016.

Coastal Shipping is fuel efficient, environment friendly and helps in easing traffic congestion on roads.

The Regional Connectivity Scheme (RCS)-UDAN was envisaged in National Civil Aviation Policy (NCAP) 2016 with the twin objective of promoting balanced regional growth and making flying affordable for masses. The Scheme, which will be in operation for a period of 10 years, envisages providing connectivity to un-served and underserved airports of the country through revival of existing air strips and airports.

GPS Aided Geo Augmented Navigation (GAGAN) is an augmentation system to enhance the accuracy and integrity of GPS signals to meet precision approach requirements in Civil Aviation and it is being implemented jointly by AAI and ISRO.

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