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Current Affairs August 15-16, 2023: Quit India Movement, NEET, Katchatheevu Island, OIC, One District One Product, Cauvery River Water Dispute, National Multidimensional Poverty Index, Farmers Distress Index, Tampara Lake, Murmansk and Odesa Ports

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Table of contents

{GS1 – MIH – Freedom Struggle – 2023/08/16} Quit India Movement

Context (IE): President Murmu pays tribute to women freedom fighters Matangini Hazra and Kanaklata Barua. Both were martyrs of the Quit India Movement (1942).

Matangini Hazra

  • Matangini Hazra was a widow from the Medinipur district of West Bengal.
  • At age 61, she was arrested for participating in the Civil Disobedience Movement (1930) and the Salt March led by Gandhi.
  • She became an active member of the Indian National Congress.
  • During the Quit India Movement, while leading a procession to take over the Tamluk police station from British authorities, she was shot dead at the age of 73.

मातंगिनी हाजरा: जिन्होंने गोलियों से छलनी होने के बाद भी तिरंगे को न तो झुकने दिया और न ही गिरने! |Matangini Hazra The Freedom Fighter of India

Kanaklata Barua

  • Kanaklata Barua from Assam was one of the youngest martyrs of the Quit India Movement.
  • She led the Mrityu Bahini, a procession of freedom fighters, to unfurl the Tricolour at Gohpur police station during the Quit India Movement.
  • Kanaklata, who was only 17 years of age then, was shot dead by police.

KANAKLATA BARUA: The Fearless Golden Girl Of India's Freedom Struggle

Quit India Movement

  • Mahatma Gandhi launched the Quit India Movement on 8th August 1942, calling an end to British rule at the All-India Congress Committee Session in Mumbai.
  • During his speech, Gandhiji called “Do or Die” at the Gowalia Tank Maidan (now known as August Kranti Maidan).
  • Aruna Asaf Ali (the ‘Grand Old Lady’ of the Independence Movement) hoisted the Indian flag at the Gowalia Tank Maidan in Mumbai during the Quit India Movement.
  • Yusuf Meherally (a socialist and trade unionist) coined the slogan ‘Quit India’. He also served as Mayor of Mumbai.

Demands of the Quit India Movement

  • To end the British rule in India with immediate effect.
  • To form a provisional government after the withdrawal of the Britishers.

Causes of the Quit India Movement

  • Failure of the Cripps Mission was the immediate cause for the Quit India movement.
  • The British involved India in World War II without prior consultation, which the INC did not support.
  • The shortage of essential commodities during World War II further fuelled anti-British sentiments.

Cripps Mission

  • Cripps Mission was sent under Stafford Cripps during World War II to address the issue of a new constitution and self-government for India. The main proposals the mission offered are:
    • After the war, India would be granted dominion status with complete external and internal autonomy.
    • A Constituent Assembly would be set up with the power to frame the future constitution of India.
    • Members of the assembly would be elected by the provincial assemblies and also nominated by the princes.
    • Any province unwilling to join the Union could have a separate constitution and form a separate Union.
    • During the war, an interim government comprising different parties of India would be constituted. But, Governor General will be responsible for defence and external affairs.

Reasons for Failure of Cripps Mission

  • The mission failed because both INC and Muslim League rejected its proposal.
INC Rejected the Proposals Because
  • The mission offered dominion status instead of complete independence.
  • The representation of the princely states by nominees and not by elected representatives.
  • Right of provinces to secede which is against the principle of national unity.
  • Absence of any plan for immediate transfer of power.
  • Real powers will still rest with the Governor General.
Muslim League Rejected the Proposals Because
  • The mission offered the idea of a single Indian Union.
  • The league did not like the procedure of the creation of constituent assembly and the accession of provinces to the Union.
  • It denied the Muslims the right to self-determination and the creation of Pakistan.

Phases of the Quit India Movement

Phase Description
First Phase It is marked by urban revolt, strikes, boycotts, picketing, and demonstrations throughout the country. Gandhiji was imprisoned at Aga Khan Palace in Pune.
Second Phase The focus shifted to the countryside, which witnessed major peasant rebellions.

It was marked by destroying railway tracks and stations, telegraph wires and poles, attacks on government buildings, etc.

Third Phase It witnessed the formation of national governments or parallel governments in isolated pockets (Ballia, Tamluk, Satara, etc.)

Successes of the Quit India Movement

  • Rise of Future Leaders: Ram Manohar Lohia, J.P. Narayan, Aruna Asaf Ali, Biju Patnaik, Sucheta Kriplani, etc., emerged as prominent leaders.
  • Women Participation: The movement saw the active participation of women.
  • Rise of Nationalism: It instilled a greater sense of unity and brotherhood among the Indian people. Students dropped out of institutions. People gave up their jobs collectively for their country.
  • Changed Britishers Outlook: Though the movement was suppressed in 1944, Britishers came to the critical realisation that India was ungovernable in the long run due to the cost of World War II. This changed the nature of Britain’s political negotiations.

Reasons Why the Quit India Movement Failed

  • Brutal Repression: The British violently suppressed the movement, and many people were shot and injured.
  • Lack of Support: Muslim League, the Communist Party of India, and the Hindu Mahasabha did not support the movement. The Indian bureaucracy also did not support the movement. Even many Congress members like C Rajagopalachari did not favour Gandhi’s idea.

{GS2 – Education – Issues – 2023/08/16} TN CM Wants Education Back in State List

  • Context (TH): The Tamil Nadu CM called for transferring education back to the State List of the Seventh Schedule of the Constitution.
  • The CM’s remarks came in the aftermath of the TN Governor declining to provide his assent to the TN State government’s bill seeking exemption from the NEET.

National Eligibility and Entrance Test (NEET)

  • It is an all-India entrance test for admission to undergraduate medical courses.
  • NEET has been conducted since 2013.

Issues

  • Some States are opposing the NEET on the following grounds:
    • NEET fosters inequity and benefits affluent candidates who can afford expensive coaching.
    • The centralised admission test causes a monetary burden and inconvenience for students.
    • The national level tests favour students from the Central Board of Secondary Education (CBSE) (Close to 59% of the shortlisted students in IIT JEE were from the CBSE Board alone).
    • It undermines the autonomy of the States on education matters.

Education in India

  • The IC, in its original enactment, defined education as a State subject.
  • The 42nd Constitutional Amendment Act of 1976 moved education to the concurrent list.
  • The 86th Constitution Amendment Act inserted Article 21A in the IC, making education a Fundamental Right for Children aged 6 to 14 years.
  • Right to Education (RTE) Act, 2009, provides free and compulsory education to all children aged 6 to 14 years.

Education as a concurrent subject

  • It allows for flexibility and coordination between the central and state governments.
  • It enables the central government to set specific national-level educational standards and policies while permitting states to address local needs and issues in education.

Seventh Schedule of the IC

  • It divides legislative powers between the central government (Union) and the state governments.
  • The distribution of powers helps maintain a balance between the central government’s authority and the autonomy of the state governments.
  • It contains three lists:
    1. Union List
    2. State List
    3. Concurrent List
  1. Union List: This list includes subjects on which only the central government can make laws.
    • Examples: Defense, Foreign Affairs, Banking, Currency, and Atomic Energy.
  2. State List: This list consists of subjects on which only the state governments can make laws.
    • Examples: Police, Public Health, Agriculture, Land, and Local Government.
  3. Concurrent List: This list includes subjects on which both the central and state governments can make laws. However, the central law prevails in case of a conflict between central and state laws.
    • Examples: Criminal Law, Marriage, Education, Forests, Protection of Wild Animals, etc.
  • Additionally, the Residuary Power belongs to the Central Government, allowing it to legislate on matters not mentioned in any list.

42nd Constitutional Amendment Act of 1976

  • It moved the following subjects from the State list to the Concurrent list:
    1. Education
    2. Forest
    3. Protection of wild animals and birds
    4. Weights and measures
    5. Administration of justice, constitution and organisation of all courts except the supreme court and high courts.

{GS2 – IR – India-Sri Lanka – 2023/08/16} Katchatheevu Island

Katchatheevu island

  • Context (IE): Prime Minister Narendra Modi, in his speech in the Parliament during the No Confidence debate, mentioned the Katchatheevu island.

History of the Island and How it Became an Issue for Indo-Sri Lankan Relations

History of the Katchatheevu Island

  • Katchatheevu is an uninhabited speck between India and Sri Lanka in the Palk Strait.
  • It is of relatively new geological origin, being the product of a 14th-century volcanic eruption.
  • It lies northeast of Rameswaram, about 33 km from the Indian coast.
  • Only structure on the island is an early 20th-century Catholic shrine, St Anthony’s church. Devotees from both India and Sri Lanka make the pilgrimage there.
  • Katchatheevu is not suited for permanent settlement as there is no source of drinking water.

National Emergency in India 1975

  • Originally under Article 352, a National emergency could be declared on the basis of “external aggression or war” and “internal disturbance” in the whole of India or a part of its territory.
  • National Emergency of 1975 was declared on the grounds of internal disturbance.
  • But after the 44th amendment act (1978), National Emergency can only be declared on grounds of:
  • “External aggression or war”, also called External Emergency
  • Armed rebellion“, also called Internal Emergency.

Exclusive Economic Zones (EEZs)

  • EEZ extends up to 200 nm from the coastal state’s baseline.
  • Within this zone, the coastal state has special rights and jurisdiction over the exploration and exploitation of natural resources, both living and non-living, in the water, as well as the seabed and subsoil.
  • Other states enjoy freedoms such as navigation and overflight, as well as the right to lay submarine cables and pipelines.

Sri Lankan Civil War

  • Sri Lankan Civil War was an armed conflict that lasted for around 26 years (from 1983 to 2009) between the government of Sri Lanka and the Liberation Tigers of Tamil Eelam (LTTE).
  • LTTE was a separatist militant organization primarily composed of Tamil nationalists.
  • The LTTE (or Tamil Tigers) was founded in the 1970s with the aim of establishing an independent Tamil state called Tamil Eelam in the north and east of Sri Lanka.
  • The conflict had its roots in long-standing ethnic and political tensions between the majority Sinhalese population and the minority Tamil population in Sri Lanka.

What is Tamil Nadu’s Position on Katchatheevu?

  • Katchatheevu was given away to Sri Lanka in 1974 without consulting Tamil Nadu state assembly.
  • There were protests against PM Indira Gandhi’s move, citing two reasons:
  1. The historical control of the Ramnad Zamindari over the island.
  2. Traditional fishing rights of Indian Tamil fishermen.
    • In 1991, in the aftermath of India’s disastrous intervention in the Sri Lankan Civil War, the Tamil Nadu Assembly sought retrieval of Katchatheevu.
    • In 2008, then AIADMK supremo, the late J Jayalalitha, filed a petition in court saying Katchatheevu could not be ceded to another country without a constitutional amendment.
    • However, GoI’s position has largely remained unchanged. It argued that since the island had always been under dispute, “no territory belonging to India was ceded nor sovereignty relinquished.”

How Indian Territory of India can be Ceded? (GS 1, Polity)

  • In Berubari Union Case (1960), Supreme Court established that Indian territory can be ceded to a foreign state only by amending the Constitution under Article 368.
  • The Supreme Court held that the power of Parliament to diminish the area of a state (under Article 3) does not cover the cession of Indian territory to a foreign country.
Berubari Union Case (1960)
  • The Berubari Union Case was a dispute between India and Pakistan over the possession of the Berubari Union, a small area located in West Bengal.
  • The dispute was resolved through the Nehru-Noon Agreement of 1958, which provided for the division of the Berubari Union between India and Pakistan.
  • But the Supreme Court ruled against the GoI and stated that a constitutional amendment under Article 368 is required to cede territory to a foreign country.
  • Consequently, the 9th Constitutional Amendment Act (1960) was enacted to transfer the territory to Pakistan.

{GS2 – IR – Regional Groupings – 2023/08/15} Organisation of Islamic Cooperation

  • Context (TH): OIC suspended the status of Sweden’s special envoy. It accused Sweden of enabling “the repeated abuse of the sanctity of the Holy Quran and Islamic symbols.”
  • Organisation of Islamic Cooperation (OIC) is a coalition of 57 Muslim countries established in 1969.

Organisation of Islamic Cooperation

  • It is the second largest international organisation after United Nations.
  • It endeavours to safeguard and protect the interests of the Muslim world in the spirit of promoting international peace and harmony among various people.

India and OIC

  • Initially, India was invited, but later the Pakistan government lobbied to dis-invite India.
  • In 2018, Bangladesh proposed to OIC to give Observer status to India, as India has 10% of the world’s Muslim population.
  • In 2019, UAE called India a guest of honour at the OIC meeting. The then Foreign Minister Sushma Swaraj participated in that event. 
  • At present, India is neither a member nor an observer of the OIC.

OIC’s stand on Kashmir

  • OIC stands with Pakistan on Kashmir. Every summit includes the Kashmir issue and criticises alleged Indian atrocities in J&K.
  • But only a handful of countries, such as Turkey and Malaysia, have come with public condemnation against India.

{GS2 – MoCI – Schemes – 2023/08/16} One District One Product (ODOP) Wall

  • Context (PIB): The ODOP initiative and DAY-NRLM collaborated to launch the ODOP Wall, a visually appealing display of India’s diverse and unique handicrafts.
  • The ODOP Program is a project operating under the Department for Promotion of Industry and Internal Trade (DPIIT), which falls under the Ministry of Commerce and Industry.
  • The program identifies distinctive and culturally significant products from each district, encompassing handicrafts, handloom, and agricultural goods.
  • The idea is to select, brand, and promote One Product from each District of the country.
  • It is a CSS shared by the central government and states in 60:40 contributions.
  • It is operationally merged with the ‘Districts as Export Hub’ initiative.
  • States will identify the ODOP food product for a district.

Goals of The ODOP Initiative

  • Unlocking districts’ full potential, fostering economic and socio-cultural development.
  • Generating job opportunities, particularly in rural regions.
  • Transform every district into an export centre.
  • To facilitate the growth of manufacturing.
  • Provide support to local businesses.
  • Identify potential international markets.

Govt implements “One District One Product' (ODOP) to boost the food industry -

{GS2 – MoRD – Schemes – 2023/08/16} DAY-NRLM

  • Context (PIB): The ODOP initiative and DAY-NRLM collaborated to launch the ODOP Wall, a visually appealing display of India’s diverse and unique handicrafts.
  • Deendayal Antyodaya Yojana-National Rural Livelihood Mission (DAY-NRLM) was launched by the Ministry of Rural Development (MoRD) in 2011.
  • In 1999, after restructuring Integrated Rural Development Programme (IRDP), the MoRD launched Swarnajayanti Grameen Swarojgar Yojana (SGSY) to promote self-employment.
  • SGSY is remodelled to form NRLM, thereby plugging the shortfalls of the SGSY programme.
  • DAY-NRLM is implemented through a network of SHGs & Community-Based Organizations (CBOs).
  • In 2021, the program had over 100 million members and had disbursed over ₹1 trillion in loans.
  • Self-Help Groups (SHGs) are groups of 10-20 poor women who come together to save money and lend it to each other at low-interest rates.
  • CBOs are organisations that provide training and support to SHGs.

Key features of DAY-NRLM

  • It provides financial services to SHGs and CBOs, such as loans, savings, and insurance.
  • It gives skill training to SHG members in entrepreneurship, business management, life skills, etc.
  • It helps SHG members to access markets for their products.

Sub-schemes under NRLM

Sub-Schemes Under NRLM

Objectives of NRLM

Aajeevika Grameen Express Yojana (AGEY)

  • Launched in FY 2017-18, the scheme aims to provide safe and affordable public transport services to rural communities.
  • It engages CBOs or SHGs in managing and operating public transport services, thereby creating livelihood opportunities for rural youth and women.

Aajeevika Skills

  • The scheme provides skill development training to rural youth and women.
  • The training covers various sectors, such as agriculture, handicrafts, tourism, construction, etc.

Start-up Village Entrepreneurship Program (SVEP)

  • SVEP aims to promote entrepreneurship in rural areas by facilitating the establishment and growth of micro-enterprises.
  • It supports rural entrepreneurs, especially those from marginalised communities.

Mahila Kisan Sashaktikaran Pariyojana (MKSP)

  • It empowers women farmers by enhancing their participation in agriculture and related activities.
  • MKSP supports capacity building, training, and access to resources, technologies, and markets to improve women’s agricultural productivity and income.

Deen Dayal Upadhyaya Grameen Kaushalya Yojana (DDU-GKY)

  • While not directly under NRLM, DDU-GKY complements its efforts by providing skill training and employment opportunities to rural youth from poor families.
  • It aims to ensure inclusive growth by focusing on skill development and self-employment.

Interest Subvention Scheme (ISS)

  • The ISS aims to provide interest rate subsidies to the Self Help Groups (SHGs) on their bank loans, making credit more affordable and accessible for rural women.
  • This helps in promoting economic activities and entrepreneurship at the grassroots level.

{GS2 – Polity – Inter-State Disputes – 2023/08/16} Cauvery River Water Dispute

 

  • Context (TH): TN has requested SC to direct Karnataka to release the full 36.76 TMC of water that is due for September 2023, as per the Cauvery Water Disputes Tribunal’s (CWDT) final award of 2007, which was modified by the SC in 2018.
  • CWMA had already ordered Karnataka to release 10,000 cusecs of water daily for the next 15 days, starting August 12.
  • However, Karnataka has refused to abide by this decision, arguing that the lower rainfall in the Cauvery catchment area, including in Kerala, has led to the poor inflow to its own reservoirs.

Cauvery Water Disputes Tribunal (1990)

  • Central Government, in 1990, in the exercise of the powers conferred by section 4 of the Inter-State River Water Disputes Act, 1956 had constituted the Cauvery Water Disputes Tribunal to resolve the water dispute among Karnataka, Kerala, Tamil Nadu, and Puducherry.
  • The tribunal issued its final award in 2007, allocating 419 TMC to TN Tamil Nadu, 270 TMC to Karnataka, 30 TMC to Kerala and 7 TMC to Puducherry.

Supreme Court Intervention and the Final Verdict

  • In 2018, SC delivered its final verdict, granting Karnataka an additional 14.75 TMC of river water.
  • The final allocation for a total of 740 TMC is
    • Karnataka: 284.75 (270 + 14.75) TMC
    • Tamil Nadu: 404.25 (419 – 14.75) TMC
    • 30 TMC to Kerala and
    • 7 TMC to Puducherry
  • The water allocation arrangement will stand unchanged for the next 15 years.

How is the water being shared?

  • Cauvery River water is shared between Karnataka and T.N. according to a monthly schedule.
  • In a Normal Water Year (June to May), Karnataka will release 177.25 TMC of water to TN.
  • During the southwest monsoon season (June to September), a total of 213.14 TMC is to be released.
  • The Monsoon (deficit) Season is when the Cauvery issue typically flares up.

{GS2 – Poverty – 2023/08/15} National Multidimensional Poverty Index (MPI)

  • Context (TH | TH): 41.5 crore Indians came out of multidimensional poverty in 15 years, says UN.
  • NITI Aayog index says 13.5 cr Indians lifted out of multidimensional poverty in the last five years.

Global Multidimensional Poverty Index (MPI)

  • Global MPI is a measure of multidimensional poverty covering 107 developing countries.
  • It was first developed in 2010 by Oxford Poverty and Human Development Initiative (OPHI) and United Nations Development Programme (UNDP) for UNDP’s Human Development Reports.
  • Global MPI uses three dimensions and ten indicators.

Global Multidimensional Poverty Index (MPI)

  • All indicators are equally weighted within each dimension.
  • The MPI ranges from 0 to 1, and higher values imply higher poverty.
  • Global MPI complements the international $2.15 a day poverty rate devised by World Bank.
  • Human development indices by United Nations Development Programme (UNDP):
    1. Human Development Index (HDI)
    2. Inequality Adjusted HDI (IHDI)
    3. Gender Development Index (GDI)
    4. Gender Inequality Index (GII)
    5. Multidimensional Poverty Index (MPI)

Data used for Global MPI

  • For India, GMPI uses the National Family Health Survey (NFHS) data.
  • NFHS is conducted under the aegis of the Ministry of Health and Family Welfare (MoHFW) and the International Institute for Population Sciences (IIPS).

Nodal agency in India

  • NITI Aayog is the nodal agency for monitoring the mechanism of the Global MPI in India.
  • As the Nodal agency for the MPI, NITI Aayog has constituted a Multidimensional Poverty Index Coordination Committee (MPICC).

2023 Global Multidimensional Poverty Index (MPI)

  • 1.1 billion out of 6.1 billion (~18%) live in acute multidimensional poverty across 110 countries.
  • 25 countries, including India, successfully halved their global MPI values within 15 years.

Findings related to India

  • Deprivation in all indicators declined in India.
  • People who are multidimensionally poor and deprived under the nutrition indicator in India declined from 44.3% in 2005-06 to 11.8% in 2019-21.
  • A total of 415 million people moved out of poverty in India within 15 years (2005-06 to 2019-21).

National Multidimensional Poverty Index (National MPI)

  • It is published by NITI Aayog using the methodology in consonance with the global methodology.
  • Like the global MPI, India’s national MPI has three equally weighted dimensionsHealth, Education, and Standard of living – represented by twelve indicators.
  • The national MPI model retains the ten indicators of the global MPI model.
  • It also adds two indicators, viz., Maternal Health and Bank Accounts, in line with national priorities.

National MPI, 2023

  • It is the second edition of the National MPI.
  • It is prepared based on the latest National Family Heath Survey of 2019-21.
  • It represents India’s progress in reducing multidimensional poverty between the two surveys, NFHS-4 (2015-16) and NFHS-5 (2019-21).

Highlights of the report

  • Nearly 13.5 crore people came out of multidimensional poverty in five years.
  • Uttar Pradesh registered the largest decline in the number of poor, with 3.43 crore people escaping multidimensional poverty.
  • India registered a steep decline in the number of multidimensionally poor from 24.85% to 14.96% between 2015-16 and 2019-21.

National Multidimensional Poverty Index

Poverty Indicators and their Weightage

  • Between 2015-16 and 2019-21, the MPI value has nearly halved from 0.117 to 0.066 and the intensity of poverty has reduced from 47% to 44%.
  • India is on the path of achieving the SDG Target 1.2 (of reducing multidimensional poverty by at least half) much ahead of the stipulated timeline of 2030.

A graph of multidimensional poverty index Description automatically generated

NFHS-4 and NFHS-5 Findings in Urban and Rural India Description automatically generated

MPI Progress Report, 2023

Percentage of the total population who are multidimensionally poor

Percentage of Total Population in the State who are Multidimensionally Poor Description automatically generated with medium confidence

State/UT Wise percentage point change in the headcount ratio between 2015-16 and 2019-21

MPI based on NFHS-4 Description automatically generated MPI Based on NFHS-5

  • The most rapid reduction in the proportion of multidimensionally poor individuals occurred in districts located within the states of Madhya Pradesh, Gujarat, Uttar Pradesh, and Rajasthan.

MPI Based on NFHS-4 MPI Based on NFHS-5

Issues with MPI

  • There are several issues regarding measurability, aggregation across indicators, and of databases that provide the requisite information.
  • Example: Child mortality is for population groups and not for households. Access to safe drinking water cannot be aggregated with indicators such as child mortality.

Poverty line estimation in India

  • Poverty line is the amount of money needed for a person to meet his basic needs.

Consumption-Based Poverty Ratio

  • It is an indicator of the percentage of people living below the poverty line based on their level of consumption expenditure.
  • The National Sample Survey (NSS) periodically conducts large-scale surveys to collect data on various socio-economic aspects, including consumption patterns.

Importance

  • Defining poverty in terms of income or consumption expenditure seems most appropriate, and this method is followed in most countries.

Pre-Independence Poverty Estimation

  1. Dadabhai Naoroji, in his book ‘Poverty and Un-British Rule in India,’ made the earliest estimate of the poverty line of ₹16 to ₹35 per capita per year at 1867-68 prices.
  2. The Bombay Plan (1944) suggested a poverty line of ₹75 per capita per year.

Post- Independence Poverty Estimation

Committees

Poverty line

Rural

Urban

Lakdawala Committee (1993) (per capita per month) Rs. 49.09 Rs. 56.64
Tendulkar Committee (2005) (per capita per day) Rs. 26 Rs. 32
Rangarajan Committee (2012) (per capita per day) Rs. 32 Rs. 47
  • Lakdawala Committee, Tendulkar Committee, and Rangarajan Committee have used the per capita consumption expenditureto estimate the poverty line.

MPI vs Poverty based on consumption expenditure

  • The MPI includes the non-income dimensions of poverty.
  • Some of these may not be tightly linked to the privately purchased consumption basket.
  • Therefore, poverty based on consumption differs from deprivation based on education or health.
  • MPI estimates can complement but not substitute for NSS’s consumption-based poverty ratios.

Lack of data

  • We do not have official data on consumer expenditure after 2011-12.
  • The survey data on consumption expenditures done in 2017-18 have not been released officially.
  • In the absence of official data, it is difficult to compare with trends in the MPI.

{GS3 – Agri – Schemes – 2023/08/16} Farmers Distress Index

  • Context (DTE): Central Research Institute for Dryland Agriculture (CRIDA), an institution under the ICAR, developed an early warning system called the ‘farmers distress index’.
  • Aim: to minimise agrarian distress due to crop loss/failure and income shock.
  • Farmers’ exposure to shocks has increased in recent years, with an increase in extreme climate events and market and price fluctuations, often driving them to death by suicides.
  • The index will anticipate this distress and pre-warn different stakeholders (including central, state, local, and NGOs) so that they can take timely preventive measures.
  • The index can sense imminent distress at least 3-4 months ahead of its actual occurrence.

Methodology Followed in Farmers Distress Index to Track Distress

Methodology to track Farmers Distress

Step After the Tracking Distress through the Index

  • After the calculation of index values, different agencies can carry out interventions to prevent income shocks to farmers depending on the severity of distress.
  • The current solutions that are being thought upon are:
    • Direct money transfer
    • Pradhan Mantri Fasal Bima Yojana (PMFBY) in case of crop failures
    • Providing work under Mahatma Gandhi National Rural Employment Guarantee Act
    • Enhanced rationing under Public Distribution System

Pradhan Mantri Fasal Bima Yojana (PMFBY)

  • The PMFBY crop insurance scheme was launched in 2016.
  • It was formulated in line with the One Nation-One Scheme theme by replacing:
    • National Agricultural Insurance Scheme (NAIS) and
    • Modified National Agricultural Insurance Scheme (MNAIS).

Objectives of PMFBY

  • Provide insurance to farmers for crop failure due to unforeseen events (natural calamities, pests and diseases).
  • Stabilise the income of farmers to ensure their continuance in farming.
  • Encourage farmers to adopt innovative and modern agricultural practices.
  • Ensure credit flow to the agriculture sector to ensure food security, crop diversification, and growth and competitiveness.

Crops Covered by PMFBY

  • Food crops (Cereals, Millets, and Pulses)
  • Oilseeds
  • Commercial/Horticultural crops

Rate of Premium Paid by the Farmer to Insurance Company under PMFBY

Crop
  1. Rate of Premium
Kharif crops 2%
Rabi crops 1.5%
Commercial crops 5%
Horticultural crops 5%
  • If the premium rate quoted by the Insurance Company is higher than the above rates, the difference will be paid by the State and GoI at 50% each in the form of premium subsidy.
  • GoI’s share in premium subsidy is 90% for the North Eastern States.
  • GoI’s premium subsidy is limited up to 30% for unirrigated areas/crops and 25% for irrigated areas/crops (Before 2020, there was no upper for central subsidy).
  • There is no upper limit on Government subsidy.

Farmers Covered by PMFBY

  • The scheme is optional for all farmers. (Before 2020, it was mandatory for farmers who have taken institutional loans)

Coverage of Risks and Exclusions under the PMFBY Scheme

  • Crop risks leading to crop loss covered under the scheme are:
    • Prevented Sowing/Planting/Germination Risk
    • Standing Crop (Sowing to Harvesting)
    • Post-Harvest Losses
    • Localized Calamities
    • Crop loss due to attack by wild animals
  • General Exclusions: Losses due to war and nuclear risks, malicious damage, and other preventable risks shall be excluded.

Central Research Institute for Dryland Agriculture (CRIDA)

  • CRIDA was established in 1985 as an institute under the Indian Council of Agricultural Research.
  • It is headquartered in Hyderabad.
  • Objective: To undertake agricultural research activities in areas with low rainfall.

Indian Council for Agricultural Research (ICAR)

  • ICAR is an autonomous organisation under the Department of Agricultural Research and Education (DARE), Ministry of Agriculture and Farmers Welfare.
  • It was established in 1929 as a registered society under the Societies Registration Act, 1860.
  • It is headquartered in New Delhi.
  • It has 102 ICAR institutes and 71 agricultural universities under it.
  • It is the apex body for coordinating, guiding, and managing research and education in agriculture, including horticulture, fisheries, and animal sciences in the entire country.
  • It played a pioneering role in many developments in Indian agriculture, including Green Revolution.

{GS3 – IE – Inflation – 2023/08/15} Consumer Price Index (CPI) and WPI

  • Context (TH): According to data released by the National Statistical Office (NSO):
    1. India’s retail inflation rate surged to a 15-month high of 7.44% in July 2023.
      • The primary driver of this surge was the food price component (high prices of tomatoes).
      • All six groups within CPI recorded sequential price increases, signalling inflation is now more widely spread across the goods and services.
      • This is the third instance in this calendar year when the retail inflation rate crossed the upper limit of the 4+/- 2 percentage band of RBI’s medium-term inflation target.
    2. Consumer Food Price Index (CFPI) recorded an inflation rate of 11.51% in July 2023.

Consumer Price Index (CPI)

  • CPI measures the inflation in the retail market. Since the different classes of consumers’ consumption patterns differ, we have several CPI indices for different categories of people. These are:
    • CPI – Rural
    • CPI – Urban
    • CPI – Combined (CPI-C)
    • CPI – Industrial Workers (CPI-IW)
    • CPI – Agricultural Labourers (CPI-AL)
    • CPI – Rural Labourers (CPI-RL)
    • CPI – Urban Non-Manual Employee (CPI-UNME)

CPI – Combined (CPI-C)

  • It is released by the National Statistical Office (NSO – Ministry of Statistics).
  • The base year for CPI-C is 2012.
  • Commodities weights under CPI (In per cent):
    1. Food and beverages45.86
    2. Miscellaneous – 28.32
    3. Housing – 10.07
    4. Fuel and light – 6.84
    5. Clothing and footwear – 6.53
    6. Pan, tobacco and intoxicants – 2.38

Consumer Food Price Index (CFPI)

  • It is a measure of change in retail prices of food products.
  • It is released by the NSO.
  • The base year for CFPI is 2012.

Wholesale Price Index (WPI)

  • WPI is released by the Office of Economic Advisor (Ministry of Commerce and Industry).
  • The base year for All India WPI is 2011-12.
  • WPI captures the average change in wholesale prices of goods.
  • It reckons only basic prices and does not include taxes, rebate/trade discounts, transport, etc.
  • It is primarily used as a GDP deflator.

Commodity weightage under WPI

Commodities Weights (In percentage)
Manufactured products 64.23
Primary articles 22.62
Fuel and power 13.15

Indices to measure inflation

Consumer Price Index (CPI) Wholesale Price Index (WPI) GDP deflator
Includes both goods & services Includes only goods Includes both goods & services
Does not include Capital goods

Includes Capital goods

Includes imported items

Excludes imported items
Includes indirect taxes Excludes indirect taxes Includes indirect taxes
Limited basket of goods and services Doesn’t consider the services sector A more comprehensive measure of inflation
Released by NSO (MoSPI) Office of Economic Advisor (MoCI) Released by NSO (MoSPI)

Released every month

Available quarterly (GDP estimates)

Released annually

Doesn’t reflects up-to-date expenditure patterns

Reflects up-to-date expenditure patterns

Inflation

  • A rise in the general level of prices of goods and services in an economy over a period of time.
    1. Headline Inflation: Inflation is due to all types of commodities in the economy.
    2. Core Inflation: Inflation excluding food and fuel items.

Inflation target

  • Under the RBI Act, the GoI, in consultation with the RBI, determines the inflation target in terms of the Consumer Price Index (CPI) every five years.
  • Current Inflation target is 4% with a band of 2% ( 2% to 6%).
  • RBI’s Monetary Policy Committee (MPC) decides the repo rate based on CPI.

GDP Deflator

  • The GDP deflator (implicit price deflator) is the ratio of the value of goods and services an economy produces in a particular year at current prices to that of prices that prevailed during the base year.
  • GDP deflator is a more comprehensive measure of inflation as it covers the entire range of goods and services produced in the economy compared to the limited commodity baskets for the WPI/CPI.

Real vs Nominal GDP

  • GDP deflator measures the difference between Real GDP (takes inflation into account) and Nominal GDP (doesn’t take inflation into account).
  • That is, the deflator helps show the extent to which the increase in GDP has happened because of higher prices (inflation) rather than an increase in output.
  • GDP price deflator formula: GDP price deflator = (nominal GDP ÷ real GDP) x 100
  • Nominal GDP will often be higher than Real GDP in an expanding economy.
  • Often, the trends of the GDP deflator will be similar to that of the CPI.

{Prelims – PAN – Ramsar Sites – 2023/08/16} Tampara Lake

National Parks, Wildlife Sanctuaries, Tiger Reserves in Chhattisgarh and Odisha

  • Context (TH I HT): NGT asks Odisha to stop illegal construction around Tampara Lake.
  • Tampara Lake (Ramsar Site) is a freshwater lake in the Ganjam district of Odisha.
  • The use of explosives during a battle in the Ganjam district between the British East India Company and French colonists in 1766 created this large depression.
  • The lake is now connected to the Rushikulya River and helps in flood control.
  • It is a habitat for vulnerable species like common carp, common pochard, and river tern.
  • The lake is also an important source of livelihood for the local communities.

{Prelims – Species In News – 2023/08/16} Tylototriton zaimeng

  • Context (TH): A new species of salamander (Tylototriton zaimeng) is recorded in the Zaimeng Lake of Manipur.
  • It is a medium-sized salamander with a wide ridge along its spine, with 13-14 pairs of bumps on its ribs, which make it different from its cousins.

Tylototriton Zaimeng

Zaimeng Lake

  • It is in the Khongtheng mountains.
  • Zaimeng means “puzzle” or “mystery” in the Liangmai Naga language.
  • Most of the lake is covered with thick grass, reeds, and mosses.

{Prelims – World PIN – Ports – 2023/08/15} Europe: Murmansk and Odesa Ports

  • Context (TH): India accounts for 35% of cargo (mostly coal bound for the eastern coast of India) handled by Russia’s Arctic Murmansk port this year.

Russia: Murmansk port

  • It is a seaport on the eastern shore of the Kola Bay of the Barents Sea.
  • It is the second-largest port in northwest Russia (after the port of St. Petersburg).

Strategic Importance

  • Murmansk port is ice-free year-round (because of the warm Norwegian Current).

Map of Atlantic Ocean Currents Flow Description automatically generated The Gulf Stream current system

  • Arkhangelsk port on the White Sea is non-operational in winter.
  • The hostile nations in the region can restrict St. Petersburg’s access to the Baltic Sea.
  • Turkey, a member of NATO, controls the Turkish Straits (Bosphorus and Dardanelles).

Northern Sea Route

Murmansk and Barents Sea Northwest Passage, Northern Sea Route and Current Route

Northern Sea Route (NSR)

  • It connects the eastern and western parts of the Arctic Ocean.
  • The NSR runs from the Barents Sea to the Bering Strait.
  • The Entire Route Lies in Arctic waters and within Russia’s exclusive economic zone.
  • It is one-third of the distance of the traditional route through the Suez Canal.

North-West Passage

  • The Northwest Passage is a sea route that connects the Atlantic and Pacific oceans through the Canadian Arctic Archipelago.
  • In recent years, Climate Change has caused the sea ice in the Northwest Passage to melt, making it possible for ships to navigate the passage more easily.

Ukraine: Odesa port

Major Ports in Ukraine

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