PIB – December 4 , 2019


GS- 2nd Paper

Topic- Government policies and interventions for development in various sectors and issues arising out of their design and implementation.

Political Parties Registration Tracking Management System (PPRTMS)

Context

The Election Commission of India has reviewed the system and process of registration of political parties and issued new Guidelines.

About

The Election Commission of India has reviewed the system and process of registration of political parties.

The new guidelines will be effective from 1st January, 2020.

 Accordingly the “Political Parties Registration Tracking Management System” (PPRTMS) will be implemented through an online portal, to facilitate tracking of status of application by applicants.

Key highlights

  • The Election Commission of India (ECI) has launched the Political Parties Registration Tracking Management System (PPRTMS).
  • In the PPRTMS the applicant will be able to track the progress of his / her application.
  • The candidates will get status update through SMS and email.
  • The applicant is required to provide contact mobile number and email address of the party / applicant in his application if he/she wishes to track the progress of the application.

GS- 3rd Paper

Topic- Issues related to direct and indirect farm subsidies and minimum support prices; Public Distribution System- objectives, functioning, limitations, revamping; issues of buffer stocks and food security;

eNAM- National Agriculture Market

Context

National Agriculture Market (e-NAM) platform is working properly and sufficient speed of internet connectivity has been provided to e-NAM mandis.

About

  • State Governments have been advised to explore the possibilities of upgrading the internet connectivity with internet service providers.
  • Close monitoring of the progress through meetings at various levels and visits of the officers to e-NAM mandis is carried out.

What is e-NAM?

  • e-NAM is one of major and important flagship schemes implemented by Ministry of Agriculture & Farmers’ Welfare.
  • National Agriculture Market (eNAM) is a pan-India electronic trading portal which networks the existing APMC mandis to create a unified national market for agricultural commodities.
  • Small Farmers Agribusiness Consortium (SFAC) is the lead agency for implementing e-NAM.
  • It seeks to leverage the physical infrastructure of mandis through an online trading portal, enabling buyers situated even outside the state to participate in trading at the local level.

Vision

  • To promote uniformity in agriculture marketing by streamlining of procedures across the integrated markets.
  • To remove information asymmetry between buyers and sellers and promoting real time price discovery based on actual demand and supply.

Key features of e-NAM

  • e-NAM is pan-India e-trading platform.
  • It is designed to create unified national market for agricultural commodities.
  • Its objective is to provide competitive and remunerative price to farmers for their produce through online competitive and transparent bidding process.
  • It integrates Central Farmer Database to increase the efficiency and reduce queue time.
  • It has now expanded to 479 Mandis across 14 states and 1 Union Territory.
  • It is now available in 8 different languages and its live trading facility is available in six different languages.
  • Using it, farmers can showcase their produce online from their nearest market and traders can quote price from anywhere.

Advantages of e-NAM

  • The NAM portal is a single window service for any information and services related to APMC.

 It includes-

  1. Commodity arrivals and prices
  2. Buy and sell trade offers
  3. Provision to respond to trade offers, among other services
  • The e-NAM reduces the transaction costs and information irregularity even when the agriculture produce continues to flow through the mandis.
  • For the farmers, e-NAM promises more options for sale.
  • For the local trader in the mandi, e-NAM offers the opportunity to access a larger national market for secondary trading.
  • The gradual integration of all the major mandis in the States into e-NAM will ensure common procedures for issue of licences, levy of fee and movement of produce.
  • The NAM will also facilitate the emergence of value chains in major agricultural commodities across the country and help to promote scientific storage and movement of agri goods.

GS- 1st Paper

Topic- Role of women and women’s organization, population and associated issues, poverty and

developmental issues, urbanization, their problems and their remedies.

Mahila Kisan Sashaktikaran Pariyojana (MKSP)

Context

Assistance to Female Farmers

About

  • Mahila Kisan Sashaktikaran Pariyojana (MKSP) is being implemented by the Department of Rural Development, Ministry of Rural Development.
  • It aimed to empower women in agriculture by making systematic investments to enhance their participation and productivity, as also to create and sustain their agriculture-based livelihoods.
  • Under MKSP, a total number of 36.06 lakh Mahila Kisans have been benefitted through 84 projects in 24 States/UTs in the country.
  • Out of which 1.81 lakhs women have been benefitted in the State of Maharashtra.

About MKSP

  • The “Mahila Kisan Sashaktikaran Pariyojana” (MKSP) is a sub component of the Deendayal Antodaya Yojana-NRLM (DAY-NRLM).
  • It seeks to improve the present status of women in Agriculture, and to enhance the opportunities available to empower her.

Key features

  • MKSP recognizes the identity of “Mahila” as “Kisan” .
  • It strives to build the capacity of women in the domain of agro-ecologically sustainable practices.
  • It reach out to the poorest of poor households and expand the portfolio of activities currently handled by the Mahila Kisan.
  • MKSP is focusing on capacitating smallholders to adopt sustainable climate resilient agro-ecology and eventually create a pool of skilled community professionals.

Objective

  • To enhance the participation of women in agriculture in a productive manner.
  • To improve the skills and capabilities of women in agriculture to support farm and non-farm based activities.
  • To improve the capacities of women in agriculture to access the resources of other institutions and schemes within a convergence framework.
  • Its objective is to strengthen smallholder agriculture through promotion of sustainable agriculture practices, such as-
  1. Community Managed Sustainable Agriculture (CMSA),
  2. Non Pesticide Management (NPM),
  3. Zero Budget Natural Farming (ZBNF),
  4. Pashu-Sakhi model for doorstep animal care services,
  5. Sustainable regeneration and harvesting of Non-Timber Forest Produce.

Funding

Funding support to the tune of up to 60% (90% for North Eastern States) for such projects is provided by the Government of India.

Women Farmers in India

  • Rural women form the most productive work force in the economy of majority of the developing nations including India.
  • More than 80% of rural women are engaged in agriculture activities for their livelihoods.
  • About 20 per cent of farm livelihoods are female headed due to widowhood, desertion, or male emigration.
  • Agriculture support system in India strengthens the exclusion of women from their entitlements as agriculture workers and cultivators.
  • Most of the women-headed households are not able to access extension services, farmers support institutions and production assets like seed, water, credit, subsidy etc.
  • As agricultural workers, women are paid lower wage than men.
  • MKSP seeks to improve the present status of women in Agriculture, and to enhance the opportunities available to empower her.

GS- 2nd Paper

Topic – Government policies and interventions for development in various sectors and issues arising out of their design and implementation.

Regional Connectivity Scheme (RCS-UDAN)

Context

Ministry of Civil Aviation Launches Round 4 of RCS- UDAN.

About the Scheme

  • Regional Connectivity Scheme (RCS-Udan) stands for Ude Desh ka Aam Nagrik.
  • UDAN is a flagship scheme of the Union Government to enable air operations on unserved routes, connecting regional areas, to promote balanced regional growth and to make flying affordable for masses.
  • The UDAN Scheme is a key component of the National Civil Aviation Policy (NCAP) which was launched in June 2016.

Objectives

  • The primary objective of RCS- Udan is to facilitate regional air connectivity by making it cheap and affordable.
  • To boost regional air connectivity and provide various incentives to airlines.
  • It promotes affordability of regional air connectivity is envisioned under RCS by supporting airline operators through: Concessions and Financial (viability gap funding or VGF) support.

Significance

  • The UDAN scheme seeks to provide connectivity to un-served and under-served airports of the country through revival of existing air-strips and airports.
  • The scheme gives India’s aviation sector a boost by giving a chance to small and first-time operators to be a part of the rapid growth in passenger traffic.
  • This first-of-its-kind scheme will ensure affordability, connectivity, growth and development.
  • Under it regional connectivity will be developed on market-based mechanism under which Airlines will bid for seat subsidies.

GS- 2nd Paper

Topic covered– Government policies and interventions for development in various sectors and issues arising out of their design and implementation.

Prohibition of Electronic Cigarettes Ordinance

Context

Union Cabinet has approved the Promulgation of the Prohibition of Electronic Cigarettes (production, manufacture, import, export, transport, sale, distribution, storage and advertisement) Ordinance, 2019.

What are Electronic Cigarettes (e-cigarettes)?

  • Electronic-cigarettes are battery-operated devices that produce aerosol by heating a solution containing nicotine, which is the addictive substance in combustible cigarettes.
  • These include all forms of Electronic Nicotine Delivery Systems, Heat Not Burn Products, e-Hookah and the like devices.
  • It is a battery-powered vaporizer that mimics tobacco smoking. It works by heating up nicotine liquid, called “juice.”
  • Nicotine juice (or e-juice) comes in various flavors and nicotine levels.
  • Its use has increased exponentially and has acquired epidemic proportions in developed countries, especially among youth and children.

ICMR’s recommendations

  • The Indian Council of Medical Research (ICMR)has recommended ‘complete’ ban on Electronic Nicotine Delivery Systems (ENDS), including e-cigarettes.
  • e-cigarettes and other such devices contained not only nicotine solution, that was highly addictive, but also harmful ingredients like flavoring agents and vaporisers.
  • Availability of flavour variants and attractive designs are adding to allure of devices, and globally there was an increasing trend of e-cigarettes consumption among youth and adolescents.
  • Use of ENDS or e-cigarettes can open a gateway for new tobacco addiction among the masses as on the balance, these have a negative impact on public health.
  • Prolonged use of ENDS or e-cigarettes has documented adverse impact on humans which includes DNA damage, respiratory/cardiovascular/ neurological Disorders and have adverse effects on fetal development and pregnancy.
  • Research has found that youths using e-cigarettes are more likely to use regular cigarettes in later period.

Major Impact of the Ordinance

  • Prohibition of Electronic Cigarettes Ordinancewill ensure effective and timely action against the trend of use of e-cigarettes, especially among the young generation.
  • It will advance tobacco control efforts, leading to better public health outcomes.
  • It will contribute to reduction in tobacco usage, and decline in associated economic and disease burden.
  • The decision to prohibit e-cigarettes will help protect population, especially the youth and children, from the risk of addiction through E-cigarettes.

WHO on e- cigarettes

  • As per the WHO report, Electronic Nicotine Delivery Systems (ENDS), also known as e-cigarettes, emits nicotine, the addictive component of tobacco products.
  • The WHO report says that although nicotine itself is not a carcinogen, it may function as a “tumour promoter”.
  • Nicotine seems to be involved in the biology of malignant disease, as well as of neurodegeneration.
  • Nicotine can have adverse effects on the development of the foetus during pregnancy and may contribute to cardiovascular disease, as well as it make addictive.
  • Foetal and adolescent nicotine exposure may have long-term consequences for brain development, potentially leading to learning and anxiety disorders.

For Prelims

International Day of Persons with Disabilities

Highlight

  • International Day of Persons with Disabilities is celebrated on December 3.
  • It is an international observance promoted by the United Nations since 1992.
  • The observance of the Day aims to promote an understanding of disability issues and mobilize support for the dignity, rights and well-being of persons with disabilities.
  • It was originally called “International Day of Disabled Persons” until 2007.
  • 2019 Theme: ‘Promoting the participation of persons with disabilities and their leadership’.