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Prime Minister to launch Accessible India Campaign for Physically disabled people n important aim of the society is to integrate persons with disabilities in the society so that they can actively participate in society and lead a normal life. Ideally, a disabled person should be able to commute between home, work place and other destinations with independence, convenience and safety. The more persons with disabilities are able to access physical facilities, the more they will be part of the social mainstream. With firm commitment of the government towards socio-economic transformation of the persons with disabilities there is an urgent need to create mass awareness for universal accessibility. DEPwD is also in the process of creating a mobile app, along with a web portal for crowd sourcing the requests regarding inaccessible places. With the app, downloaded on his/her mobile phone, any person would be able to click a photograph or video of an inaccessible public place (like a school, hospital, government office etc.) and upload the same to the Accessible India portal. The portal will process the request for access audit, financial sanction and final retrofitting of the building to make it completely accessible. The mobile app and portal will also seek engagement of big corporates and PSUs to partner in the campaign by offering their help to conduct access audit and for accessibility- conversion of the buildings/transport and websites. India is a signatory to the UN Convention on the Rights of Persons with Disabilities (UNCRPD). Department of Empowerment of Persons with Disabilities (DEPwD), Ministry of Social Justice and Empowerment, has formulated the Accessible India Campaign (Sugamya Bharat Abhiyan), as a nation-wide campaign for achieving universal accessibility for PwDs. The campaign targets three separate verticals for achieving universal accessibility namely the built up environment, transportation eco-system and information & communication eco-system. The campaign has ambitious targets with defined timelines and will use IT and social media for spreading awareness about the campaign and seeking commitment / engagement of various stakeholders. The Department has asked various State Govts. to identify about 50 to 100 public buildings in big cities and also identify citizen centric public websites, which if made fully accessible would have the highest impact on the lives of PwDs. Once identified, “Access Audit” of these buildings and websites will be conducted by professional agencies. As per the audit findings, retrofitting and conversion of buildings, transport and websites would be undertaken by various government departments. This will be supported by the Scheme of Implementation of Persons with Disabilities Act (SIPDA), an umbrella scheme run by the Department of Empowerment of Persons with Disabilities (DEPwD) for implementing various initiatives for social and economic empowerment of PwDs. Article 9 of UNCRPD casts an obligation on all the signatory governments to take appropriate measures to ensure to persons with disabilities access, on an equal basis with others, to the physical environment, to transportation, to information and communications, including information and communications technologies and systems, and to other facilities and services open or provided to the public, both in urban and in rural areas. Persons with Disabilities (Equal Opportunities. Protection of Rights and Full Participation) Act 1995 under Section 44, 45 and 46 also categorically provides for non-discrimination in participation, non-discrimination of the roads and built up environment. As per Section 46 of the PwD Act, the States are required to provide for : i) Ramps in public buildings ii) Provision of toilets for wheelchair users iii)Braille symbols and auditory signals in elevators or lifts iv) Ramps in hospitals, primary health centres and other rehabilitation centres. Article 9 – Accessibility of UNCRPD 1. To enable persons with disabilities to live independently and participate fully in all aspects of life, States Parties shall take appropriate measures to ensure to persons with disabilities access, on an equal basis with others, to the physical environment, to transportation, to information and communications, including information and communications technologies and systems, and to other facilities and services open or provided to the public, both in urban and in rural areas. These measures, which shall include the identification and elimination of obstacles and barriers to accessibility, shall apply to, inter alia: Buildings, roads, transportation and other indoor and outdoor facilities, including schools, housing, medical facilities and workplaces; Information, communications and other services, including electronic services and emergency services. 2. States Parties shall also take appropriate measures to: Develop, promulgate and monitor the implementation of minimum standards and guidelines for the accessibility of facilities and services open or provided to the public; Ensure that private entities that offer facilities and services which are open or provided to the public take into account all aspects of accessibility for persons with disabilities; Provide training for stakeholders on accessibility issues facing persons with disabilities; Provide in buildings and other facilities open to the public signage in Braille and in easy to read and understand forms; Provide forms of live assistance and intermediaries, including guides, readers and professional sign language interpreters, to facilitate accessibility to buildings and other facilities open to the public; Promote other appropriate forms of assistance and support to persons with disabilities to ensure their access to information; Promote access for persons with disabilities to new information and communications technologies and systems, including the Internet; Promote the design, development, production and distribution of accessible information and communications technologies and systems at an early stage, so that these technologies and systems become accessible at minimum cost.
Best IAS And KAS Coaching Centre In Bangalore The Supreme Court said: No temple or governing body can bar a woman from entering the famous Sabarimala shrine in Kerala where lakhs of devotees throng annually to worship. When the Devaswom Board countered that the prohibition was based on custom followed for the past half century, court asked what proof the Board had to show that women did not enter the sanctum sanctorum over 1500 years ago. Court observed that the Constitution rejects discrimination on the basis of age, gender and caste. The petition filed by the Indian Young Lawyers Association and five women lawyers seeking a direction to allow entry of women into the Sabarimala Ayyappa temple without age restriction. Women in the age group 10-50 are not allowed entry. The apex court had issued notice in the case way back in 2006. The petition had contended that women, aged between 10 and 50, touching the idol was considered an act of desecration. Backthen: An attempt was made to prosecute Kannada actor Jaimala on the plea of desecration following her disclosure that she entered the sanctum sanctorum and touched the idol in 1987. The priests conducted a special ritual to purify the idol. The Kerala High Court dismissed the charges filed by police in the controversial Sabarimala “astrological finding” case, which included Kannada actress Jaimala among the accused in 2012. The ban was enforced under Rule 3 (b) of the Kerala Hindu Places of Public Worship (Authorisation of Entry) Rules, 1965 It states “women at such time during which they are not by custom and usage allowed to enter a place of public worship”. The Kerala High Court had upheld the ban in 1991 and directed the Devaswom Board to implement it. The petition contended that discrimination in matters of entry into temples was neither a ritual nor ceremony associated with Hindu religion. Such discrimination was totally anti-Hindu. The religious denomination could only restrict entry into the sanctum sanctorum and could not ban entry into the temple, making a discrimination on the basis of sex. It had sought quashing of the Rule contending that the ban was violative of Articles 14 (equality before law), 25 and 26 (freedom of religion) of the Constitution. They wanted guidelines laid down in matters of gender inequality in religious practices at places of worship. About Sabarimala: It is a Hindu pilgrimage centre located at the Periyar Tiger Reserve in the Western Ghat mountain ranges of Pathanamthitta District, Perunad grama panchayat in Kerala. It is one of the largest annual pilgrimages in the world, with an estimated over 100 million devotees visiting every year. Sabarimala is believed to be the place where the Hindu god Ayyappanmeditated after killing the powerful demoness Mahishi. Sabarimala is linked to Hindu pilgrimage, predominantly for men of all ages. Females who menstruate (usually between the ages of approximately 12 and 50) are not allowed to enter the temple, since the story attributed to Ayyappa prohibits the entry of the women in the menstrual age group. This is because Ayyappan is a Bramhachari (celibate). Administration and legal duties is managed by Travancore Devasvom Board, an affiliate authority of Government of Kerala.
Best IAS And KAS Coaching Centre In Bangalore China launches new AIIB development bank as power balance shifts Chinese President Xi Jinping launched a new international development bank Asian Infrastructure Investment Bank (AIIB) seen as a rival to the U.S.-led World Bank. Despite opposition from Washington, U.S. allies including Australia, Britain, German, Italy, the Philippines and South Korea have agreed to join the Asian Infrastructure Investment Bank (AIIB) in recognition of China’s growing economic clout. China is the bank’s largest shareholder(30.34%).China, India and Russia are the three largest shareholders, taking a 30.34 per cent, 8.52 per cent, 6.66 per cent stake respectively in the newly-formed bank. The AIIB is expected to lend $10 billion-$15 billion a year for the first five or six years and will start operations in the second quarter of 2016. Thirty founding countries that hold over 74 percent of shares in the bank have ratified the AIIB agreement and the remaining countries have until the end of the year to complete the membership process. Asian Infrastructure development bank: The Asian Infrastructure Investment Bank (AIIB) is an international financial institution that aims to support the building of infrastructure in the Asia-Pacific region. The bank was proposed as an initiative by the government of China. The capital of the bank is $100 billion, equivalent to 2⁄3 of the capital of the Asian Development Bank and about half that of the World Bank. China has elected its former finance minister Jin Liqun as the first President. 36_liqun_jin Major economies that did not become PFM( Prospective Founding Members) include the US, Japan (which dominated the ADB) and Canada. What lead to the formation of AIIB? The Chinese government has been frustrated with what it regards as the slow pace of reforms and governance, and wants greater input in global established institutions like the IMF, World Bank and Asian Development Bank which it claims are dominated by American, European and Japanese interests. China in the ADB has only 5.47 percent voting right, while Japan and US have a combined 26 percent voting right (13 percent each) with a share in subscribed capital of 15.7 percent and 15.6 percent, respectively. Dominance by both countries and slow reforms underlie China’s wish to establish the AIIB, while both countries worry about China’s increasing influence. Shares: The Authorized Capital Stock of the bank is 100 billion US Dollars, divided into 1 million shares of 100 000 dollars each. Twenty percent are paid-in shares (and thus have to be transferred to the bank), and 80 % are callable shares. Voting: Three categories of votes exist: 1.Basic votes 2.share votes and 3.Founding Member votes. The basic votes are equal for all members and constitute 12% of the total votes, while the share votes are equal to the number of shares. Each Founding Member furthermore gets 600 votes. An overview of the shares, assuming when all 57 Prospective Founding Members have become Founding Members is shown below (values in bold do not depend on the number of members):
Best IAS And KAS Coaching Centre In Bangalore Government extends time-line for Atal Pension Yojana till March 31, 2016 Government extended by 3 months, the timeline for its co-contribution facility under the Atal Pension Yojana (APY) in a move aimed at benefiting the unorganised sector. A guaranteed pension scheme, APY provides monthly pension ranging from 1, 000 to 5, 000 rupees to the subscribers. Scheme was announced to address the longevity risks among the workers in unorganised sector and to encourage the workers in unorganised sector to voluntarily save for their retirement. Under the scheme the government co-contributes 50 per cent of the subscriber’s contribution for a period of 5 years, if the subscriber has joined before 31st December 2015. The government has now extended its co-contribution plan for subscribers who join APY by 31st March 2016. This measure is likely to benefit substantial number of people who have not been able to join APY. The scheme will however continue for new subscriptions beyond March 2016, but without the benefit of 50% government co-contribution. As per finance ministry’s data the number of subscribers under APY have increased to 1.8 crore till January 16, 2016. Atal pension yojana: Atal Pension Yojana is a government-backed pension scheme in India targeted at the unorganised sector. Till the launch of this scheme only 11% of India’s population has any kind of pension scheme, this scheme aims to increase the number . In Atal Pension Yojana, for every contribution made to the pension fund, The Central Government would also co-contribute 50% of the total contribution or ₹1, 000 (US$15) per annum, whichever is lower, to each eligible subscriber account, for a period of 5 years , from Financial Year 2015-16 to 2019-20, who join the NPS between the period 1st June, 2015 and 31st March, 2016 and who are not members of any statutory social security scheme and who are not income tax payers. The minimum age of joining APY is 18 years and maximum age is 40 years. The age of exit and start of pension would be 60 years. Therefore, minimum period of contribution by the subscriber under APY would be 20 years or more. Aadhaar would be the primary KYC document. The subscribers are required to opt for a monthly pension from Rs. 1000 – Rs. 5000 and ensure payment of stipulated monthly contribution regularly. The subscribers can opt to decrease or increase pension amount during the course of accumulation phase, as per the available monthly pension amounts. This scheme will be linked to the bank accounts opened under the Pradhan Mantri Jan Dhan Yojana scheme and the contributions will be deducted automatically. Recently Modified provisions under APY: Subscribers were provided with an option to make the contribution on a monthly, quarterly, half yearly basis instead of only monthly basis earlier. The account was not be deactivated and closed till the account balance with self-contributions minus the government co-contributions become zero due to deduction of account maintenance charges and fees. The penalty on delayed payment was also simplified to Rs 1 per month for contribution of Rs 100 for each delayed monthly payment instead of different slabs given earlier.
Draft National Policy on Capital Goods and Engineering A draft base paper on National Policy on Capital Goods was prepared by the Department of Heavy Industry (DHI)- Confederation of Indian Industry (CII) Joint Task Force on Capital Goods and Engineering. WHAT ARE CAPITAL GOODS? Any tangible assets that an organization uses to produce goods or services such as office buildings, equipment and machinery. Consumer goods are the end result of this production process. “Capital Goods” sector comprises of plant and machinery, equipment / accessories required for manufacture / production, either directly or indirectly, of goods or for rendering services, including those required for replacement, modernization, technological upgradation and expansion. It also includes packaging machinery and equipment, refrigeration equipment, power generating sets, equipment and instruments for testing, research and development, quality and pollution control. Capital goods sector is extremely crucial for the development of the country’s economy for the following two important reasons: – 1.Capital Goods is considered as a strategic sector and development of domestic capabilities is essential from a national self-reliance and security perspective . 2.Capital Goods sector has multiplier effect and has a bearing on the growth of user industries as it provides critical inputs, i.e., machinery and equipment to the remaining sectors covered under the manufacturing activity. The capital goods sector contributes 12% to the total manufacturing activity (which is about 15% of the GDP). It is a large and diverse sector in India with a market size of INR 2, 50, 000 Cr in 2013–14 and a domestic production of close to INR 1, 92, 000 Cr. The sector is estimated to grow to a market size of approx INR 4, 65, 000 Cr in 2016–17 with domestic production of approx INR 4, 00, 000 Cr. The sector is a major employer, with close to 13, 00, 000 people employed across various sub-sectors. The sector has grown at the rate of 15% per annum over the last decade. Heavy electrical and power plant equipment is the largest sub-sector contributing to approx 65% of total capital goods requirement. The sector contributes significantly to exports with over Rs 52, 000 crores in 2013-14 which have grown at approx 20% per annum over the last decade. The sector also imports to the extent of Rs. 1, 14, 500 crore, which is 37% of the total demand of capital goods. The capital goods component in industrial production has lagged in recent years due to slow pace of domestic demand leading to growing dependence on imports and following slow growth in the world economy. Further, in the globalized world and as trade barriers in the form of tariffs are reduced, not all capital goods manufacturers have been able to tap the global opportunity. Today, the sector has witnessed a gradual improvement and registered a positive growth from April to December 2014 at 5.7%. Key Issues: Imports continue to address ~35-40% of domestic demand for capital goods with the proportion being significantly higher in “critical components” segment for each subsector. Machine tools, heavy electrical and power plant equipment are sub-sectors that are particularly weak in self reliance with ~40% of demand being met by imports. Indian share in global exports in the capital goods sector is still low, ranging between 0.1% and 0.6%, across various sub-sectors. In contrast, share of global exports for China ranges between 7.7% and 16.3% depending on the sub sector. The prospects for growth of the capital goods sector in India have always been projected to be good. Basis this, industry has invested significantly in capacity while the market 3 growth has not been commensurate with the same. This has led to large blocks of underutilized capacity, waiting to capitalize on the latent demand in the market. Beyond 4-5 large players, the market is fragmented with the majority of operative units in the SME sector. These SMEs are challenged vis-à-vis large foreign competitors with low operating scale and issues related to access to capital. Historically, lower appetite for capital investment in R& D and limited know-how of process technologies, the technology profile of domestic products ranges from basic to intermediate. Support facilities, technology development institutions and skilled man-power continue to lag behind global standards Cost disabilities such as higher cost of power, finance and infrastructure leading to higher operating cost. Vision: “To increase the share of capital goods contribution from present 12% to 20% of total manufacturing activity by 2025” Mission Become one amongst top 10 capital goods producing nations of the world 4 – Raise exports to a significant level of at least 40% of total production. objectives: Creating an Eco-system for globally competitive Capital Goods Sector. Creation and Expansion of Market for Capital Goods Sector Promotion of Exports Human Resource Development Technology & IPR Introduction of Mandatory Standards Focus on SME Development
The Department of Agriculture and Cooperation and the Ministry of Agriculture have been renamed he Department of Agriculture and Cooperation and the Ministry of Agriculture have been renamed as the Department of Agriculture, Cooperation and Farmers Welfare (DAC& FW) and the Ministry of Agriculture and Farmers Welfare respectively. With a view to focus on the issues of farmers welfare, the DAC& FW has created a separate Division called ‘Farmers Welfare’ under the charge of a senior officer. Some of the important new initiatives in this context are: 1.Soil Health Card (SHC) scheme: Soil Health Card Scheme is a scheme launched by the Government of India in February 2015. Under the scheme the government plans to issue Soil card to farmers which will carry crop-wise recommendations of nutrients and fertilisers required for the individual farms to help farmers to improve productivity through judicious use of inputs. All soil samples are be tested in various soil testing labs across the country. Thereafter the experts will analyse the strength and weaknesses (micro-nutrients deficiency) of the soil and suggest measures to deal with it. The result and suggestion will be displayed in the cards. The Government plans to issue the cards to 14 crore farmers. 2 .Paramparagat Krishi Vikas Yojana (PKVY): Paramparagat Krishi Vikas Yojana (Traditional Farming Improvement Programme) has been launched by Government of India to support and promote organic farming and thereby improving soil health. This will encourage farmers to adopt eco-friendly concept of cultivation and reduce their dependence on fertilizers and agricultural chemicals to improve yields. 3. Pradhan Mantri Krishi Sinchai Yojana (PMKSY): The NDA government has launched the Pradhan Mantri Krishi Sinchayi Yojana, which heavily borrows from the Accelerated Irrigation Benefits Programme; but tries to replace the fragmented approach with an integrated approach aiming at convergence of investments in irrigation. 4. New National Crop Insurance Scheme: Agricultural Insurance in India is covered by “National Crop Insurance Programme” which was launched by UPA government in 2013 by merging three schemes viz. Modified National Agricultural insurance Scheme (MNAIS), Weather Based Crop insurance Scheme (WBCIS) and Coconut Palm Insurance Scheme (CPIS). These three schemes now serve as components of the NCIP. National Crop Insurance Programme provides financial support to farmers for losses in their crop yield, to help in maintaining flow of agricultural credit, to encourage farmers to adopt progressive farming practices and higher technology in Agriculture and thereby, to help in maintaining production, employment & economic growth. 5. National Food Security Mission (NFSM); NFSM) is a Central Scheme of GOI launched in 2007 for 5 years to increase production and productivity of wheat, rice and pulses on a sustainable basis so as to ensure food security of the country. The aim is to bridge the yield gap in respect of these crops through dissemination of improved technologies and farm management practices. 6.Mission for Integrated Development of Horticulture (MIDH); A Centrally Sponsored Scheme of MIDH has been launched for the holistic development of horticulture in the country during XII plan. The scheme, which has taken take off from 2014-15, integrates the ongoing schemes of National Horticulture Mission, Horticulture Mission for North East & Himalayan States, National Bamboo Mission, National Horticulture Board, Coconut Development Board and Central Institute for Horticulture, Nagaland. 7.National Mission on Oilseeds & Oil Palm (NMOOP); The mission would help in boosting the production of oilseeds by 6.58 million tonnes and will bring additional area of 1.25 lakh hectares under oil palm cultivation. In addition to this, it would also lead to an enhancement in productivity of fresh fruit bunches to 15, 000 kg/ha from 4927 kg/ha and increase in collection of tree borne oilseeds to 14 lakh tonne. It would increase production of vegetable oil sources by 2.48 million tonnes from oilseeds (1.70 MT), oil palm (0.60 MT) and tree borne oilseeds (0.18 MT) by the end of the 12th Plan period. NMOOP is inspired by the accomplishments of the existing schemes of Integrated Scheme of Oilseeds, Oil Palm and Maize, Tree Borne Oilseeds Scheme and Oil Palm Area Expansion programme implemented during the 11th Plan period. 8. National Mission for Sustainable Agriculture (NMSA); Under the National Action Plan on Climate Change, India has launched a dedicated National Mission on Sustainable Agriculture (NMSA) to define its strategies for climate mitigation and adaptation within the agriculture sector. Emission by Agriculture Sector: Agriculture is responsible for around 14% of global emissions. If the emissions from the agriculture are combined with the emissions caused by deforestation for farming, fertilizer manufacturing and agricultural energy use, this sector becomes the largest contributor to global emissions. In India, the agriculture sector accounts for 17.6% of total emissions. At the same time, it consumes some one fourth of the electricity, so, it is indirectly responsible for another 10% of the GHG emissions. When we combine these figures with the fertilizer industries, catering solely to agriculture, and use of diesel, we find that agriculture is the largest contributor of GHG in India. So there is a need that the farm sector is given priority in India’s climate mitigation strategy. 9. National Mission on Agricultural Extension & Technology (NMAET); National Mission on Agricultural Extension and Technology (NIMAET) is a new 12th Plan programme approved by outgoing UPA Government in February 2014 with an objective to spread farm extension services and mechanization. This mission has four sub-missions as under: Sub Mission on Agricultural Extension (SMAE) Sub-Mission on Seed and Planting Material (SMSP) Sub Mission on Agricultural Mechanization (SMAM) Sub Mission on Plant Protection and Plant Quarantine (SMPP) The common thread that runs across all four sub-missions is extension and technology; the four sub-missions are proposed for administrative convenience. The entire plan period outlay for this scheme is Rs. 13073.08 crore, with Government of India’s share of Rs. 11390.68 crore and State share of Rs.1682.40 crore. This scheme aims to bring maximum possible farmers within the ambit of cost effective and remunerative mechanized farming for improved productivity and sustainable farm growth in the country. It also covers seed production and plant protection along with strengthening regulatory framework for management of pesticides and plant quarantine. 10. Unified National Agriculture Markets; The National Agriculture Market (NAM) is envisaged as a pan-India electronic trading portal which seeks to network the existing Agricultural Produce Market Committees (APMCs) and other market yards to create a unified national market for agricultural commodities. NAM is a “virtual” market but it has a physical market (mandi) at the back end. 11. Rashtriya Krishi Vikas Yojana (RKVY). Rashtriya Krishi Vikas Yojana is a special Additional Central Assistance Scheme which was launched in August 2007 to orient agricultural development strategies, to reaffirm its commitment to achieve 4 per cent annual growth in the agricultural sector during the 11th plan. The scheme was launched to incentivize the States to provide additional resources in their State Plans over and above their baseline expenditure to bridge critical gaps. The RKVY covers all sectors such as Crop Cultivation, Horticulture, Animal Husbandry and Fisheries, Dairy Development, Agricultural Research and Education, Forestry and Wildlife, Plantation and Agricultural Marketing, Food Storage and Warehousing, Soil and Water Conservation, Agricultural Financial Institutions, other Agricultural Programmes and Cooperation. Incentivize the States RKVY is a State Plan Scheme. Foreign Direct Investment (FDI): As per data on sector-wise Foreign Direct Investment (FDI) inflows maintained by the Department of Industrial Policy & Promotion (DIPP), Government of India, during April 2000 to June 2015, FDI inflows in the agriculture services has been US $ 1763.57 Million (i.e. Rs.8747.4 crore) which is higher than the FDI inflows into sectors like textiles, mining and electronics. However, FDI inflows in the agriculture services during the above period has been lower as compared to computer software & hardware, telecommunications, automobiles etc. In agriculture machinery, FDI inflows during the above period has been US $ 418.65 million. To attract more FDI in agriculture sector, 100% FDI has been allowed in coffee, rubber, cardamom, palm oil tree and olive oil tree plantations, besides tea plantation in which FDI has already been allowed.
Best IAS And KAS Coaching Centre In Bangalore Government of India and World Bank sign a loan agreement for Neeranchal National Watershed Project The Government of India signed a loan agreement with World Bank here for the Neeranchal National Watershed Project. The Integrated Watershed Management Programme (IWMP), which commenced from the year 2009-10, is an ongoing Centrally Sponsored Scheme supporting watershed development in 28 states, following the Common Guidelines for Watershed Development Projects – 2008 (Revised 2011). The IWMP is delivered by the Ministry of Rural Development (MoRD) through the Department of Land Resources (DOLR) at the national level, and through dedicated State Level Nodal Agencies (SLNA) set up for this purpose, in the States. The project to be implemented by the Ministry of Rural Development over a six-year period (2016-21) will support the Pradhan Mantri Krishi Sinchayi Yojana in hydrology and water management, agricultural production systems, capacity building and monitoring and evaluation. The total cost of the project is Rs. 2142.30 crore of which the Government’s share is Rs. 1071.15 crore (50 percent) and rest is the loan component from the World Bank. Why Neeranchal? For achieving the major objectives of the Watershed Component of the Pradhan Mantri Krishi Sinchayi Yojana (PMKSY) For ensuring access to irrigation to every farm (Har Khet Ko Pani) and efficient use of water (Per Drop More Crop). Bring about institutional changes in watershed and rainfed agricultural management practices in India. Devise strategies for the sustainability of improved watershed management practices in programme areas, even after the withdrawal of project support. Support improved equity, livelihoods, and incomes through forward linkages, on a platform of inclusiveness and local participation. The programme will lead to reducing surface runoff of rainwater, increasing recharge of ground water and better availability of water in rainfed areas resulting in incremental rainfed agriculture productivity, enhanced milk yield and increased cropping intensity through better convergence related programmes in project area. Pradhan Mantri Krishi Sinchayi Yojana: Central scheme that aims at providing irrigation facilities to every village in the country by converging ongoing irrigation schemes implemented by various ministries. Scheme envisages: Ensure access to some means of protective irrigation to all agricultural farms in the country in order to produce ‘per drop more crop’ to bring desired rural prosperity. Flexibility and autonomy: to states in the process of planning and executing irrigation projects in order to ensure water to every farm. Irrigation plans: ensure that state and district irrigation plans are prepared on the basis of sources of availability of water and agro-climatic conditions in that region. Promoting extension activities: related to ‘on farm water management and crop alignment’ for farmers as well as grass root level field functionaries. Agencies involved: nodal agency for implementation of PMKSY projects will be state agriculture department. Inter-ministerial National Steering Committee (NSC) will periodically review these projects. Budgetary allocation: 1, 000 crore rupees for fiscal year 2015-16. Funding Pattern: Centre- States will be 75: 25 per cent. In case of north-eastern region and hilly states it will be 90:10.
Best IAS And KAS Coaching Centre In Bangalore PM Modi unveils historic Startup Action Plan The PM unveiled the historic Startup Action Plan.It was on the occasion of India’s 69th Independence Day that Prime Minister Narendra Modi announced the Startup India initiative. It is focused on to restrict role of States in policy domain and to get rid of “license raj” and hindrances like in land permissions, foreign investment proposal, environmental clearances. It was organized by Department of Industrial Policy and Promotion (DIPP). A startup is an entity that is headquartered in India which was opened less than five years ago and have an annual turnover less than ₹25 crore (US$3.7 million). Highlights of the action Plan: 1.Compliance regime based on self certification : Startups shall be allowed to self-certify compliance with labour and environment laws . No inspection will be conducted for three years. In case of environment laws, startups under ‘white’ category would be able to self certify compliance. 2.Startup India hub : Will be single-point of contact and hand-holding. 3.Simplifying the startup process : A startup will be to able to set up by just filling up a short form through a mobile app and online portal that will be launched in April. 4.Patent protection : The government will make IPR procedure transparent for stratups. Patent applications of the startups shall be fast tracked for examination and disposal. 80% in patent registration fee. 5.Panel of facilitators to provide legal support and assist in filing of patent application: Facilitators shall provide assistance for startups in filing and disposal of patent applications related to patents, trademarks and design under relevant Acts. Government shall bear the entire fees of the facilitators for any number of patents, trademarks or designs that a startup may file. 6.Relaxed norms of public procurement for startups: Startups (in the manufacturing sector) shall be exempted from the criteria of prior ‘experience/turnover’ without any relaxation in quality standards or technical parameters. 7.Faster exits for startups : To make it easier for startups to exit, provision for fast-tracking closure of businesses have been included in ‘The insolvency and Bankrupcy Bill 2015’. Startups with simple debt structures may be wound up within a period of 90 days from making of an application for winding up on a fast-track basis. 8.Funds of funds with a corpus of Rs 10, 000 crore: To provide funding support for development and growth of innovation driven enterprises, Government will set up a fund with an initial corpus of Rs 2, 500 crore and a total corpus of Rs 10, 000 crore over a period of 4 years. 9.Credit Guarantee Fund : To catalyse entrepreneurship through credit to innovators across all sections of society, credit guarantee mechanism through National Credit Guarantee Trust Company/SIDBI shall be rolled out with a budgetary corpus of Rs 500 cr per year for the next four years. 10.Exemption from Capital Gains Tax: Exemptions shall be given in case capital gains are invested in the fund of funds recognised by the government. In addition, existing capital gain tax exemption for investment in newly formed MSMEs by individuals shall be extended to all startups. (Generally, long-term capital gains are charged to tax @ 20% (plus surcharge and cess as applicable) 11.Tax exemption for startups: To promote growth of startups, profit of startups, set up after April 1, 2016, shall be exempted from income-tax for a period of three years. 12.Tax exemption on investments above Fair Market Value : In line with the exemption available to venture capital funds to invest in startups above fair market value (FMV), investments made by incubators above FMV shall also be exempted. 13.Startup fests : For showcasing innovation and providing a collaboration platform 14.Entrepreneurship promotion via Establishment of sector specific incubators Establishment of 500 tinkering labs with 3D printers in universities Pre-incubation training to potential entrepreneurs Strengthening of existing incubation facilities Seed funding to high growth startups 15.Innovation promotion via: Atal Innovation Mission Institution of innovation awards (three per state/UT) and three national level Providing support to State Innovation councils for awareness creation and organising state level workshops/conferences Launch of Grand Innovation Challenge Awards for finding low cost solution to India’s pressing and intractable problems 16.Setting up of 35 new incubators in institutions : Funding support of 40% (subject to a maximum of Rs 10 crore) shall be provided by central government for establishment of new incubators in existing institutions for which 40% funding by the respective state government and 20% funding by the private sector has been committed. 17.Setting up of 7 new research parks modeled on the research park at IIT Madras: Government shall set up seven new research parks – six in IITs, one in IISc with an initial investment of Rs 100 crore each. These parks shall enable companies with a research focus to set up base and leverage the expertise of academic/research institution. 18.Promote entrepreneurship in biotechnology: Five new bio clusters, 50 new bio incubators, 150 technology transfer offices and 20 bio connect offices will be established. 19.Innovation focused programmes for students : Innovation core program shall be initiated to target school kids with an outreach to 10 lakh innovations from five lakh schools. A Grand Challenge Program (National Initiative for Developing and Harnessing Innovations) to support and award Rs 10 lakhs to 20 student innovations from Innovation and Entrepreneurship Development Centres. Uchhattar Avishkar Yojana has earmarked Rs 250 crore per annum towards fostering ‘very high quality’ research amongst IIT students.
Best IAS And KAS Coaching Centre In Bangalore Red Fort attack case: SC to hear review plea of death row convict in open court The Supreme Court allowed the review petition of death row convict Mohammad Arif to be heard in an open court. Arif was sentenced to death for his role in the December 2000 Red Fort terror attack killing 3 people. A Constitution bench headed by Chief Justice T S Thakur modified the apex court’s verdict , It said that in cases where the execution of a convict is pending, but review petitions are dismissed in chamber, an open hearing could take place. Arif had submitted that his case fell in a solitary category as both his review and curative petitions were dismissed before the apex court came out with the crucial verdict in September 2014. The court, through this judgement, introduced many changes to the norms governing appeals in death sentence cases. One such change was to do away with chamber hearings and instead decide appeals by a three-judge bench in an open court. In 2011, the Supreme Court had upheld Arif’s death sentence. However, in April 2014 the apex court stayed Arif’s execution in the case. The court noted that Arif’s case was unique as both his review and curative petitions had been dismissed before the court’s 2014 verdict. Why is it Unique? The Supreme court stayed the execution of Mohd Arif. Arif claimed that because he had already spent over 13 years imprisoned, he should no longer be hanged because of the belief that a death sentence would be equal to punishing him twice. His petition also stated that he was facing physical and mental illness due to the long judicial process. What does the rules say? Review petition: In India, a binding decision of the Supreme Court/High Court can be reviewed in Review Petition. The parties aggrieved on any order of the Supreme Court on any apparent error can file a review petition. Article 137 of the Constitution provides that subject to provisions of any law and rule made under Article 145 the Supreme Court of India has the power to review any judgement pronounced (or order made) by it. Such a petition needs to be filed within 30 days from the date of judgement or order. Curative Petition: Even after dismissal of a review petition, the SC may consider a curative petition in order to prevent abuse of its process and to cure gross miscarriage of justice. In the Curative petition, the petitioner is required to aver specifically that the grounds mentioned therein had been taken in the review petition filed earlier and that it was dismissed by circulation. This has to be certified by a senior advocate. The Curative petition is then circulated to the three senior most judges and the judges who delivered the impugned judgement, if available. No time limit is given for filing Curative petition. If the majority of the judges on the above bench agree that the matter needs hearing, then it would be sent to the same bench (as far as possible). The court could impose “exemplary costs” to the petitioner if his plea lacks merit. Background: On 22 December 2000, a terrorist attack took place on Red Fort in Delhi, India. It was carried out by Pakistani terrorist groupLashkar-e-Toiba. It killed two soldiers and one civilian, in what was described in the media as an attempt to derail the India-Pakistan peace talks. The attack on Red Fort is believed to have been orchestrated by Mohd. Arif, a Lashkar-e-Taiba militant. Arif was given the death penalty by a local court, and a Delhi high court confirmed his death sentence in 2007.