Yojana Summary Sept 2019
Theme: Resurgent India
Addressing Rural Poverty: Livelihood Development and Diversification
- As the Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs) bring out clearly, poverty is multi-dimensional and therefore requires a range of interventions.
- As recent data points out, half of manufacturing and one-third of the services sector is already part of the Rural Economy. Income and employment through Livelihood Development and diversification is clearly the way forward.
- The last 4 years have seen a considerable stepping up of financial resources for improving rural infrastructure, diversifying livelihoods, reducing poverty, and thereby improving the well-being of poor households in terms of allocation for Programmes of Department of Rural Development.
- Annual expenditure in 2017-18 is more than double of what it was in 2012-13. One has also to bear in mind that there were 4 additional sources of funds for addressing Rural Poverty during this period:
- The sharing pattern under Programmes for non Himalayan States became 60:40, and 90:10 in Himalayan States. Under Pradhan Mantri Awaas Yojana-Gramin (PMAY-G), instead of a 75:25 sharing earlier, it became 60:40 leveraging a total of Rs. 45,000 crore in 3 years as State share, against a Government of India provision of Rs. 81,975 crore. Likewise, from December 2015, States started contributing 40% of Pradhan Mantri Gram Sadak Yojana (PMGSY) funds. This leveraged an additional Rs. 8000 to Rs. 9000 crore of State share each year which were not available earlier with PMGSY. A similar increase happened in Programmes that were brought on 60:40 share from the earlier 75:25, like NSAP, DAY-NRLM, etc.
- From 2017-18 under the Housing Programme, additional resources were mobilized through Extra Budgetary Resources (EBRs) as well. A total of Rs. 21,975 crore of Extra Bugdetary Funds have been mobilized/are being mobilized in 2017 to 2019 period from PMAY-Gramin. Rs. 7329.43 crore has already been disbursed through EBR.
- The transfer of funds under the 14th Finance Commission awards has also registered a significant increase compared to the allocations earlier under the 13th Finance Commission. .
- The fourth important factor to note is the leveraging of Bank Loans by Women Self Help Groups (SHGs) during this period. A total of Rs. 1.64 lakh crore have been mobilized as Bank Loan by Women Self Help Groups in the last 5 years. The Bank Loan outstanding has more than doubled from Rs. 31865 crore in 2013-14 to Rs. 69733 crore in 2017-18 under DAY-NRLM.
Besides the specific resource provision for Rural Poverty Programmes,
- the thrust on Swachh Bharat Mission (SBM),
- increase in the allocations of Ministry of Agriculture and other Infrastructure and Livelihood Programmes for the poor,
- the total transfer of financial resources to Rural India has been very significant.
- A large proportion of the same goes into improvement in Incomes and Employment.
- The Department of Rural Development has focused on Development and Diversification of Livelihoods of the poor households during this period.
- The Socio Economic Caste Census (SECC) 2011 released in July 2015 provided an Evidence Based Criteria for Selection of Beneficiaries under various Government Programmes. The application of deprivation criteria of SECC to the Provision for LPG Gas connection under Ujjwala, free household electricity connection under Saubhagya selection of beneficiaries under PMAY-G and now selection under Aayushman Bharat for National Health Protection have ensured that the benefits of development reach the most deprived on a priority.
- The use of SECC in finalization of Labour Budgets to States under Mahatma Gandhi National Rural Employment Guarantee Scheme (MGNREGS) and insistence in enrolment of all women from households with deprivation under SHGs of Deendayal Antauodaya Yojana-National Rural Livelihoods Mission (DAY-NRLM) has also ensured that poor regions with larger number of poor households receive priority in Programmes of Rural Poverty.
- All programmes of Rural Development were aligned to Livelihood Development and Diversification.
- Mahatma Gandhi National Rural Employment Guarantee Scheme (MGNREGS) focused on durable assets and Water Conservation, and also provided for livelihood generating individual benefits like farm ponds, dug wells, goat shed, poultry shed, housing support, and support for dairy shed.
- The livelihood linkages in convergence with subsidy Programmes for animal resources and for agriculture contribute to improved incomes in the Agriculture and Allied Sectors.
- The increase in production of fruits and vegetables and the significant growth through animal resources over the last 4 years have been on account of this larger thrust on Rural Livelihood Development and Diversification.
- National Institute of Public Finance and Policy (NIPFP) was requested to assess the impact of Pradhan Mantri Awaas Yojana-Gramin (PMAY-G) on Income and Employment.
- The Report found that “By using information about the completed and under construction houses since 2016-17 that is made available through AwaasSoft and by the MoRD, we estimate that the scheme could have generated about 52.47 crore person-days. Of this, nearly 20.85 crore person-days are for skilled labour and the remaining 31.62 crore person-days are for the unskilled labour force in both years”.
- For Rural Infrastructure, the PMGSY has been a flagship Programme and during the last 4 years 1.69 lakh kms of roads were constructed. A significant stepping up of road construction Programm has also generated direct and indirect employment. On an average one-fourth of the total cost of construction of rural roads contributes to employment of skilled, semi-skilled and unskilled wage earners.
- Clearly these have also contributed to Incomes and Employment during this period. The Central Government annual allocation was increased to Rs. 19000 crore over the last 3 years.
- This is able to leverage Rs. 8000 crore to Rs. 9000 crore as State share. Over the last 3 years, this means that nearly Rs. 70,000 crore to Rs. 80,000 crore was available only for road construction. 25% creating direct employment is naturally a larger number with consequences for income and employment in rural areas.
- Mahatma Gandhi National Rural Employment Guarantee Scheme (MGNREGS) has been a major source of strengthening livelihood security with full transparency during this period.
- The Central Government’s commitment to ensure effective implementation of MGNREGS is reflected by the continuous increase in Budget allocation. Total Budget Allocation in FY 2017-18 was Rs. 55,167 crore which was highest since inception.
- Fund Utilization: The fund utilization (including Central and State share) has also seen a significant increase in comparison to previous financial years. The total expenditure in FY 2017-18 is about Rs, 64.288 crore (Provisional)which is highest ever since inception.
- The person-days generated under MGNREGS in the last 3 years has been in the range of 235 crore every year. This is higher than most years before, indicating how the thrust on durable assets and Individual Beneficiary Schemes (IBSs) has generated a steady demand for MGNREGS. The figures below affirm the high demand for Livelihoods security through durable assets of MGNREGS.
- The expansion of the National Food Security Act (NFSA) with a provision of rice at Rs. 3 per kg and wheat at Rs. 2 per Kg has facilitated food security in poor households.
- The increases in the Consumer Price Index for Agricultural Labour has been modest on account of the low food price inflation during this period as food items comprise the largest chunk of the basket of goods and services for calculating the Consumer Price Index for Agricultural Labour.
- The subsidies on Rice and Wheat, and the ready availability of cheap food grains to poor households need to be factored in while looking at wage rates for Agricultural Labour. Even with nominal increases in real wage, the purchasing power goes up as major expenditure items like rice and wheat are heavily subsidized with effective availability.
- Rural poverty is truly multi-dimensional and there is a need to address it simultaneously for greater impact.
- The efforts over the last few years have been towards convergence of rural initiatives to make a real difference to the well-being of poor households. These interventions have targeted both the poverty of households and the poverty of geographies. The factors contributing to these are listed below:
Poverty of Households
- Lack of education and skills
- Under-nutrition and ill-health
- Lack of employment opportunities
- Lack of safe housing
- Limited access to public services
- Clutches of middlemen/corruption/money lender
- Absence of Social Capital collectives of women/youth/poor households
Poverty of Geographies
- Low price for produce – distress
- Unirrigated agri/vagaries of monsoon
- Lack of basic infra-roads, electricity, internet
- Lack of access to markets and jobs
- Lack of non-farm opportunities
- It is evident that higher financial resources have been made available for addressing rural poverty over the last few years along with a much higher scale of leverage of bank loans for women Self-Help Groups.
- These have been contributing to both rise in incomes and employment through diversification and development of livelihoods.
- Overall the challenges to rural poverty are being effectively addressed through the range of interventions outlined above.
- Evaluation studies by the Institute of Rural Management Anand (IRMA) have also confirmed increase in incomes, productive assests, and enterprises in villages where Women Self-Help Groups are active under DAY-NRLM.
- Similarly, Studies of Water Conservation works under MGNREGA by the Institute of Economic Growth confirmed increase in income, productivity, acreage, and the water table.
- Such increases are bound to generate employment on a large scale.
The avowed objectives of “Sabka Saath, Sabka vikaas and Sabka Vishwaas” and the Prime Minister’s clarion call of achieving a 5 trillion dollar economy by 2024-25 necessitates putting in place a whole set of initiatives towards good governance. As many as 7 out of 41 chapters of the “Strategy for New India @75” document released by NITI Aayog, focused exclusively on governance while in remaining chapters, most has emphasized on good governance for better service delivery and more effective outcomes.
How recent measures for reforming governance can potentially transform India into a high growth economy capable of fulfilling the aspirations of people and facilitating achievement of not only Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs) by 2030, but also help in India emerging amongst the most developed countries by 2047 i.e. the 100th year of Indian Independence?
Cooperative and Comparative Federalism
- Ever since the inception of NITI Aayog w.e.f. January 1, 2015, there has been a renewed thrust on Centre-State relations through cooperative federalism recognizing that strong States make a strong Nation.
- A number of initiatives have been taken to foster cooperative federalism through structured support initiatives and mechanisms of engagement with the States/Union Territories (UTs) on a continuous basis. These include:
- Meetings between Prime Minister/Cabinet Ministers with all Chief Ministers; sub-groups of Chief Ministers on subjects of national importance;
- Sharing of best practices;
- Policy support and capacity development of State/UT functionaries;
- Aspirational Districts Programme for development of 115 most backward districts;
- Theme based extensive engagements in various sectors; framing model laws for land leasing and agriculture marketing reforms; and area specific interventions for North Eastern, Himalayan States, and Island development.
- A unique feature of this new strategy is to improve States’/UTs’ performances by encouraging healthy competition through transparent ranking in various sectors with a handholding approach.
- Some of the indices launched include Health Index, Composite Water Management Index, SDG Index and Performance of Aspirational Districts.
- Dynamic ranking portals have been put in place to facilitate States/UTs to feed data and monitor their performance in various sectors vis-à-vis other States/UTs, including third party validation of data.
- Once districts compete amongst themselves, States would emerge stronger and when State compete amongst themselves, the nation becomes stronger. This is one of the key elements of governance in a pursuit towards transforming India.
Direct Benefit Transfer and Use of Aadhaar
- With Aadhaar now firmly in place especially in targeted delivery of subsidies, Direct Benefit Transfer (DBT) continues to make major inroads into policy and service delivery framework of the country.
- Currently about 439 schemes across 55 Ministries are covered by DBT. Cumulatively about Rs. 7.66 lakh crore has been transferred to beneficiaries through DBT mode with estimated gains of Rs. 1.42 lakh crore.
- Of this, DBT in LPG alone has contributed Rs. 59,599 crore (42% of total savings by deleting 4.23 crore duplicate/fake connections) while Public Distribution System (PDS) has contributed Rs. 47,633 crore (34% of total savings by deleting around 3 crore ration cards).
- In 2018-19 there were 59 crore beneficiaries of DBT who got benefits in cash while more than 70 crore beneficiaries got it in kind (for instance, food and fertilizers).
- On July 23, 2019, the President of India has given his assent to the Aadhaar and other Laws (Amendment) Act 2019 providing a strong regulatory framework for operation of Aadhaar and its voluntary use.
- States can also use Aadhaar for implementing their schemes. With 124 crore people having Aadhaar numbers, New India is expected to make increasing use of Aadhaar along with mobile numbers for better delivery of benefits in a leakage proof manner.
Outcome Based Monitoring
- Over the last few years, there has been a structural change in the budget making process with removal of Plan/Non-Plan distinction and rationalization of Centrally Sponsored and Central Sector schemes.
- A major step in this direction is introduction of Outcome Based Budgets since Union Budget 2017-18.
- This is in contrast to earlier mechanism of merely focusing on financial outlays, expenditures and outputs.
- This is a major step in improving governance as the thrust is on meeting the expectation of people by focusing on outcomes and not merely on how much expenditure has been incurred under the respective schemes.
- The Outcome Budget 2019-20 presented in the Parliament covers 163 major central sector/ centrally sponsored schemes covering 95% of the outlays of the total of 591 schemes for which outcome budgets have been prepared by NITI Aayog and Ministry of Finance in consultation with the Ministries/Departments.
- Currently, a major exercise of independent evaluation of 28 Centrally Sponsored Schemes with budgetary allocation of about Rs. 3.3 lakh crore in 2019-20 is underway in NITI Aaayog.
- At implementation level also, for various schemes, there is greater thrust on creation of dash boards providing on-line and real-time data on schemes and their beneficiaries.
- With advancements in Information and Communication Technology (ICT) coupled with penetration of Aadhaar and mobile phones, it has been possible to provide many public services through online modes.
- Starting from biometric attendance of Government employees, digitizing database of beneficiaries across all schemes, seeding with Aadhaar numbers, using PoS machines for beneficiary authentication and finally transferring the funds to Aadhaar linked bank accounts, various initiatives have made marked improvements in way services are delivered to the public.
- Digital India programme being implemented by the Ministry of Electronics and Information Technology is covering multiple projects of various Central Ministries/ Departments and States /UTs.
- The programme is centred on three keys vision areas viz.
- Digital Infrastructure as a core utility;
- Governance and services on demand;
- Digital empowernment of this programme include connectivity for all 2.5 lakh Gram Panchayats through BharatNet, providing Aadhaar numbers, setting up Common Service Centres including in each Gram Panchayat, Digital Lockers for every citizen, digital life certificates, DBT, digital payments, and so on.
- Besides, portals such as Centralized Public Grievance Redressal and Monitoring System (CPGRAMS), the Unified Mobile Application for New-age Governance (UMANG) and MyGov are in place providing information to citizens seeking feedback and resolving grievances.
- The extent of successful penetration of E-services in India can be gauged by the fact that under Electronic Transaction Aggregation and Analysis Layer (E-Taal), more than 3799 services across Central Ministries and State Governments have been integrated and more than 2000 crore transactions have taken place since January 1 to August 3, 2019, (4,200 crore in 2018) i.e. more than 9 crore per day.
- Administrative Reforms are a key component to facilitate Transforming India. Reforms in civil services are a continuous process and several initiatives have been undertaken, such as introduction of a multi-stakeholder feedback performance evaluation, dispensing with interviews for lower level positions, introduction of online mechanisms for appraisals and filing of various returns by employees, implementation of e-office, and strengthening training and merit-based postings.
- NITI Aayog has taken the initiative of inducting highly motivated Young Professionals and Consultants on contractual basis in its workforce as to provide a fresh perspective in the way Government thinks and operates. The same is also being replicated in a few other Ministries/States.
- The Strategy for New India @75 document of NITI Aayog has proposed transformative measures, such as improving teeth to tail ratio, promoting officer oriented culture, bringing down number of civil services and allocating candidates as per competencies, encouraging lateral entries and specialization, bringing down entry age, strengthening municipal cadres, training and skill assessments, institutionalization of goal setting and performance evaluation, greater suo moto disclosures, protection of civil servants, E-initiatives and probity.
- Measures have also been proposed to improve governance in cities besides data led governance without compromising on the data security for citizens.
Law and Order
- Legal and judicial reforms would need to be attended on priority so as to ensure safety of people and ensure access to justice in a timely and effective manner. Though law and order is a state subject, Government of India would need to continue engaging states to reform their policing.
- Some of the suggestions include adoption of the Model Police Act of 2015, filling up vacancies and greater representation of women, reforms in FIR system with greater usage of IT, training/sensitization of police personnel and inducting a separate cadre for cyber-crimes, cyber threats and fraud.
- In the area of judicial reforms, there is again a significant scope for improvement especially with the use of IT.
- There is a need to reduce criminalization by compounding of minor offences with steep penalties that act as a real deterrent.
- Focus needs to be more on arbitration so that most cases get resolved out of court. The court processes all across the country need to be automated with electronic court and case management.
- Redundant laws need to be repealed and new laws need to be written in a simple manner. Forensics and ballistics testing need significant improvements. Besides an All India Judicial Services examination on ranking basis, an Indian legal service may also be considered.
- The focus needs to move from litigation driven to creation of a law abiding society by sensitizing citizens right from the school level.
- Transforming India, as a mandate, is by no means an easy task. It requires clarity of vision, well thought out strategy and action plans dovetailed to achieve that larger vision. The Sustainable Development Goals, of which India is one of the signatories, lay out the roadmap for all countries including India, to achieve by 2030.
- Accordingly, India is also aligning its goals and targets to achieve SDG objectives. While good governance is pervasive across all goals, Goal 16 specifically deals with access to justice and building effective, accountable and inclusive institutions. This cannot be done by the Government alone and needs collaborative approach of all stakeholders be it judiciary, civil society, corporates, think tanks, academia, media or citizens themselves.
- Only then the objective of Transforming India can be achieved in its truest sense.
Developing a Knowledge-based Society
- July 22, 2019 was yet another red-letter day in the history of Indian Science and Technology. On that day ISRO commenced its historic journey to the moon by lofting its most complex satellite Chandrayaan-2 along with a lander and a rover for lunar exploration. The GSLV MKIII, nicknamed as Bahubali, placed the Chandrayaan-2 in a highly elliptical orbit around the earth.
- From there the rocket engines on the spacecraft will be fired to raise the apogee step-by-step and then the spacecraft will undertake the journey to the moon breaking the gravitational field of the earth. As it reaches the moon its velocity will be reduced so that the spacecraft will be pulled into the orbit around the moon.
- Initially the composite module will be stabilized in an orbit of 200 km around the moon. Aerial survey of the landing location will be made by the mother spacecraft based on which the landing sequence will be worked out.
- As stated by Dr. K. Sivan, Chairman of ISRO, the next 15 minutes will be a nightmare, when the lander will be guided precisely to the landing location near the South Pole. A set of variable thrust of rocket engines, stereo cameras and laser ranging instrument will provide input to the onboard computer which is programmed to carry out these complex operations.
- This lander named as Vikram is going to soft land in a totally unknown territory with uncertainties about its trajectory and performance making India’s maiden effort to land on the unchartered surface cluttered with meteors and rocks. ISRO is planning to achieve this in September and India will reaffirm its well-established fourth position in the elite space club of developed nations.
- The unique mission as a rover carrying analytical instruments moving around the landing site and analyzing the samples is going to be a historical event. Confirmation of quality and quantum of water, Helium-3 and rare metals are going to be valuable inputs for enhancing fundamental knowledge about moon and inputs for future lunar missions.
Knowledge: key to development
- The first pictures of earth from Chandrayaan-2 were revealed by ISRO confirming normal performance of the spacecraft. These achievements of ISRO makes it the flagship of Indian Science and Technology. It also proves that India is second to none in mastering the complex technologies and using it for the advancements of scientific knowledge and their application for enhancing the quality of life of people in the country. ISRO’s long-term vision coupled with careful planning and above all the commitment of team ISRO is responsible for these unique achievements.
- India was flourishing in the scientific thoughts and inventions starting from 5000 BC. There were ample examples of excellent town planning, agricultural practices, Ayurveda, astrology and use of metals as seen in the relics from Harappa and Mohenjodaro on the banks of Sindhu and Saraswati rivers.
- The supremacy in the scientific knowledge and technology possessed by ancient India has led to contribution to the global economy.
- Though we had a glorious past, 2000 years back, we can no more live on past glory. This realization had led to drastic changes in our outlook on scientific activities.
- After independence, initiatives taken by the Government for setting up national, education institutes like IITs and research establishments for atomic energy, space research, defence, agriculture etc. are paying rich dividends today. Achievements in the area of space research has already been highlighted.
- The R&D activities in atomic energy have enabled us to achieve self-reliance and use the energy for peaceful and military applications.
- Similarly in defence, powerful missiles and military aircrafts have been developed through indigenous efforts. The most important achievement is in the field of agriculture. In the mid-sixties a green revolution was brought in by Dr. M. S. Swaminathan and his team.
- This is what enabled the country to achieve self reliance in several areas. In the past wherever we had focused and organized our activities in mission mode we have succeeded.
Still a long journey:
- If we look at the overall scenarios, there is lot to be done. It is heartening to know that the Government is taking a number of initiatives in creating a knowledge society by spreading digital connectivity and services in rural areas. The current year’s budget has identified thrust areas like bio-technology, science education and industrial application of R&D results. But the budget allocation for the S&T sector is less than 0.8% compared to about 3-5% by developed countries, including China.
- The decision taken by the Government to have a science council to focus and guide scientific activities in an integrated manner in the country is welcome. To site the example, atomic energy and space are having total autonomy with the respective empowered commissions to set guidelines and overseeing their activities. A similar model in other key sectors integrating related activities enabling them with empowered commissions is the need of the hour.
- A few examples of aggregating can be in the following areas:
- Climate change;
- Water resource management
- Agriculture land use;
- Medicine including Ayurveda; and
- Science Education.
- About half a dozen empowered commissions will definitely bring in required focus on the research activities to be taken-up for solving the day-to-day problems of the people. Certainly, the level of funding has to go up so that world-class laboratories can be established providing access to researchers from even remote rural areas. The close liaison of research and industrial application is essential for economic growth.
- For all these to be achieved, the investment in human resource development aiming at enabling the youth power with the scientific temper has to be given top most priority. The STEAM (Science, Technology, Engineering, Arts and Mathematics) method could be implemented so that the children are enabled to think independently and analyze and take decisions in a logical manner. They can be groomed in the field of their interest. Their experimental and practical skill have to be developed right from the beginning so that when children leave school they will be able to undertake practical work in the relevant field.
- Government support for identifying talents and to provide scholarships for pursuing higher education including research is inevitable. Though there are schemes for these, the number of scholars covered under the schemes is too meager for a huge youth population.
- India has to do a lot more to become a global player in S&T sector. It is not only necessary to enhance funding but also to put in place an empowered body for implementing these programmes in a focused and time-bound manner.
Energy – A Key Driver of Socio Economic Growth
As the Indian economy continues to grow at a rapid pace, one of the foremost challenges for the Government has been to ensure that supply of energy is sufficient to meet the steadily rising demand. As in other developing economies, access to affordable, stable and sustainable energy supply, is essential for maintaining a high growth trajectory. Energy access also enables the fruits of economic growth to trickle down to the bottom of the pyramid – transforming lives of the disadvantaged sections of society. For these reasons, the criticality of the energy sector, especially for a developing economy like India cannot be over-emphasised.
India’s energy needs
- India is the sixth largest economy in the world and is poised to become second largest economy by 2030. It is also the third largest consumer of energy in the world, with demand rising by five percent annually. With energy demand set to double by 2040, India needs a robust and healthy energy sector.
- Consequently, the Government has rightly accorded top priority to the energy sector, recognizing the transformational impact that energy access can have on the country’s socio-economic fabric. There is empirical evidence which links energy consumption to rise in the Human Development Index, showcasing energy’s role in influencing the many factors, which encompass human well-being.
- UN Sustainable Development Goal 7 pertaining to Access to Clean and Affordable Energy, has undeniable positive positive spill-overs in the achievement of other SDGs, including those pertaining gender equality, poverty elimination, clean water and sanitation, and most importantly, environmental sustainability.
- More than one-quarter of our population or about 311 million people, the vast majority of whom live in rural areas, still lack an electricity connection. Less than half of all households in the poorest income group have electricity and even those with a connection have to deal with sporadic supply.
- Another key issue is the per unit cost of power, that determines whether it is affordable for households that need it most.
- In 2017, the NDA Government launched the Saubhagya scheme targeting universal electrification and till date it has covered more than 99% of rural households, thus ushering a new era of progress. Similarly, on the distribution side, a major deterrent has been the poor financial and operational health of state discoms affecting their performance. The Government has announced the UDAY scheme to spark a financial revival of discoms, which would in turn help revitalize the entire sector.
- While focusing on energy security, equally important is to ensure that a bulk of it is generated sustainably, to help India honour its global commitments related to cutting down on carbon emissions.
- Since 2014 the Government has focused on creating a favourable policy environment for boosting the renewable energy sector, with an eye on developing renewables as a cleaner, better source of energy. This has paid rich dividends with India steadily increasing its renewables capacity while looking to achieve the target of 175 GW by 2022.
Energy needs of Commerce and Industry
- Energy access is essential for commerce and industry – to thrive and create income-generating opportunities and satisfy the huge number of job seekers.
- In the manufacturing sector, it enables capital investments in machinery and advanced technology, which exponentially increases operational capacity and output.
- Even on a micro-level, firms with energy access have higher labour productivity due to reasons of efficiency, comfort and resource optimization. Improved energy access will inject necessary momentum into the Government’s flagship schemes like Make In India, which was launched to boost domestic manufacturing. In India, where a large part of the population is engaged in agriculture, energy access can also help realize the Government’s goal of augmenting farmer income through better irrigation, mechanized ploughing and harvesting and by ensuring a wider market for their output.
Energy and Women Empowerment
- Our energy economy is also closely linked with a critical development indicator – women empowerment. As in other parts of world, women in India also have to bear the brunt of energy poverty.
- Energy access has the potential to positively influence women’s health, education, finance, and access to information, especially in backward regions.
- Our Government deserves credit for introducing the landmark Ujjwala Yojana under which 7 crore households benefitted with access to clean cooking gas, replacing firewood or coal – both major sources of indoor pollution. This was a game changer for women ensuring them a smoke free healthy lifestyle, reduced drudgery and more time to pursue alternate livelihood opportunities.
- A steady growth in renewable energy has opened up a lot of avenues for women entrepreneurship especially in rural India. Off-grid solutions and decentralized RE systems have enabled women to get trained in installing, operating and maintaining these units, providing them with much needed income, which translates into enhanced self-esteem and social standing.
- Steady access to energy also allows women to run their business more profitably and for longer durations, resulting in enhanced incomes. Energy access can catalyse a more gender equal society, where women are well-integrated into the economic mainstream, thus resulting in holistic and inclusive growth.
- Not too long ago, the number of girls enrolled in village schools was quite dismal and drop out ratio was also fairly high among them. Those who did go to school had to hurry back home before it got dark for security reasons.
- Today, solar energy powered schools in rural India have given young girls the opportunity to pursue quality modern education (ICT enabled), turn digitally literate and brighten their career prospects. Further, children can now return home in the safety of solar powered street lights and continue to study at their homes which are now electrified.
- There is empirical evidence that electrified schools do better in recruiting and retaining qualified teachers, while also recording higher student attendance, better test scores and graduation rates.
Energy and Health
- Energy also has a key role to play in ensuring universal access to clean water and sanitation. Energy is essential for water extraction, water treatment and water distribution.
- The amount of energy used in the water sector is projected to double by 2040. With water demand set to rise with increasing population, there will be a growing need to treat the wastewater for industrial, agricultural and domestic purposes. The treatment of this water through energy, and then using energy to transport the water illustrates the critical water-energy nexus.
- In the health sector as well, energy access is of paramount importance. Most hospitals require energy for lighting, water, temperature control, ventilation and a host of clinical processes. Sporadic access to energy can lead to vaccine spoilage, interruptions in the use of medical and diagnostic devices and lack of lighting and communications can be extremely detrimental in the provision of emergency services. Decentralized, clean energy solutions can greatly enhance the efficiency of primary health services delivery to the marginalized, low income sections of the population residing in remote corners of the country.
- As the healthcare ecosystem in India gets increasingly digitized, energy access will accelerate the growth of tech enabled services like telemedicine and mobile health applications, and bring quality healthcare to the doorstep of the common man.
Role of Renewable Energy Sector
- One cannot simply talk about energy propelling socio-economic growth in India without referring to the upsurge in renewable energy capacity, on the back of a conducive policy environment. A strong renewable energy sector has set in motion an energy transition that is set to change the paradigm of energy access.
- A more diverse energy supply with rising share of renewables contributes to a cleaner, healthier planet for the future, by helping reduce dependence on fossil fuels that emit harmful greenhouse gases. However, more than just safeguarding the environment, it induces perceptible improvements in socio-economic parameters like education, health, employment opportunities, and gender equality, among others, thus playing a pivotal role in poverty alleviation and improving quality of life.
- No country has traversed its development journey without providing access to energy in line with people’s needs and requirements. Sustainable energy available in the right amount, at the right time, at the right place, and affordable for the entire society, can yield major socio-economic benefits, as enlisted above.
- With the government’s razor sharp focus on universal energy access, we hope to see India maintaining its high growth trajectory, in a manner that is sustainable and inclusive, with all sections of society being able to partake in benefits of economic growth.
Skills for a $5 Trillion Economy
- The Prime Minister has set a target for India to be a $5 trillion economy by 2024. A key enabler to this is having the requisite skilled manpower in the various sectors that would drive this growth.
- India has a distinct advantage today over its competitors in terms of the age of working population. With half of its population below the age of 25, the country has the world’s youngest population.
- Along with this, India is also slated to go through a phase of sharp slowdown in population growth in the next two decades, as pointed out in the Economic Survey for 2018-19. This means that while the country as a whole will enjoy the “demographic dividend” phase, parts of it will witness the transition too ‘an ageing society by the 2030s’.
- The big challenge today, therefore is of converting this transition into a dividend – The number of those gainfully contributing to economic growth equaling the number of those dependant on them.
- There are various processes and pathways to do this.
- The first of these is education. Education for all, expansion of higher education and specific professional courses like architecture, law, medical, engineering and others are the key initiatives.
- The second is skill development for entry-level jobs – for those either in education or in employment or out of education and employment.
- The third is add-skilling, that is upskilling and reskilling those who have been educated and have worked or are working, or those who have worked and out of job to meet the skill requirements of the new jobs or changed jobs.
- According to the Economic Survey, ‘the working-age population in the country will grow by roughly 97 lakh per year during the coming decade and 42 lakh per year in the 2030s’. It has projected that, “If we assume that the labour force participation rate (LFPR) would remain at about 60 per cent in the next two decades, about 55-60 lakh jobs will have to be created annually over the next decade.” Also quoted in the survey was the finding in the NSSO Report 2011-12, which found that only 2.3 per cent of the total workforce in India had formal sector skill training.
- Early steps were taken when the National Skill Development Policy was initiated in FY2009 and National Skill Development Fund (NSDF) and the National Skill Development Corporation (NSDC) was established under the Ministry of Finance, Government of India. The National Skill Development Authority (NSDA) and The National Skills Qualification Framework (NSQF) were established in FY2013.
- In the first term of this Government, the efforts were enhanced and focused. A comprehensive skill development programme has been implemented in the last five years with the setting up of the Ministry for Skill Development and Entrepreneurship (MSDE) in November 2014. The Government formulated the National Policy on Skill Development and Entrepreneurship, 2015, under which the Skill India Mission by 2022 was formulated.
- The Skill India initiative was launched in 2015. A flagship programme Pradhan Mantri Kaushal Vikas Yojana (PMKVY) is aimed at mobilizing the youth to take up industry-relevant skill training and recognize and certify prior learning. PMKVY’s first version, launched in 2015, had a target to train 1 crore youth by 2020. During 2015-16, 19.8 lakh youth were trained as against the target of 24 lakh.
- Pradhan Mantri Kaushal Vikas Yojana (PMKVY) 2016-2020 was launched under MSDE in 2016. More than 3 crore people have been trained under Skill India, and more than 50 lakh candidates so far under PMKVY. PMKVY’s second version for 2016-20 brought in mandatory provisions for placement tracking and achieved 54 per cent placement, about 12.05 lakh candidates, in the short-term training. Of these 30 lakh candidates who enrolled, 27.9 lakh were trained.
- Besides the Pradhan Mantri Kaushal Vikas Yojana (PMKVY), other flagship initiatives of the Government to promote skill development include:
- Deen Dayal Upadhyaya Grameen Kaushalya Yojana (DDUGKY),
- Pradhan Mantri Kaushal Kendras (PMKK) and
- National Apprenticeship Promotion Scheme (NAPS).
- Also, MSDE initiated comprehensive reforms in the Apprenticeship Act in 2014 to make apprenticeship industry-friendly and, in 2018, launched operational guidelines on the roles and responsibilities of stakeholders at the national and state level. Other Ministries and States have their own skill programmes.
- Under Pradhan Mantri Kaushal Kendra (PMKK), launched in 2015 to set up aspirational model training centres in every district, 851 PMKKs have been allocated and 601 PMKKs have already been established till June 2019.
- National Apprenticeship Promotion Scheme was initiated in 2016 to promote apprenticeship with provision for basic training and on-the-job training or practical training at workplace. Till June 2019, 11.87 lakh candidates and 76,860 establishments have registered under the scheme.
- SANKALP, launched in 2017, aims to create convergence among all skill training activities, improve quality of skill development programmes and create industry-led and demand-driven skill training capacity. As on December 2018, the process of disbursements of funds to States and UTs is underway. Regional workshops with States and UTs are also being held to facilitate roll out.
- STRIVE, another initiative launched in 2017, aims to create awareness through industry clusters, integrate and enhance delivery quality of ITIs.
- The NSDC, one of its kind, Public – Private Partnership Company, has acted as a catalyst in skill development. It has engaged in 235 private sector partnerships for training and capacity building – each to train at least 50,000 persons over a 10-year period. FICCI is a shareholder of NSDC.
- To enable industry led competency building – a prerequisite to achieve the $5 trillion economy goal, 38 Sector Skill Councils (SSC) are there, some of which are promoted by FICCI. The SSCs have created 2242 Qualifications Packs with over 7000 unique National Occupational Standards (NOS). These are constantly being reviewed and added to enable skills for the new economy. Additional qualifications for meeting the needs of industry 4.0 are being created.
- To enable those enrolled in schools to obtain skills, Vocational training in 10 States, covering 2400+schools are being coordinated by NSDC. NSDC has also created the Skill Development Management System (SDMS) with 1400 training partners, 28179 training centres, 16479 trainers, 20 job portals, 77 assessment agencies and 4983 empanelled assessors.
- To increase aspirations of youth for skill development a comprehensive programme for skill competitions at the State level followed by national competition are being organized. The winners of the National competition represent India in the World Skills Competition. The last one was held in Kazan in August 2019.
- NSDC launched a recognition of prior learning scheme to enable those who are in work to obtain a certificate that serves as a recognition of their skill level and helps them in the labour market. Under PMKVY, 16.60 lakh candidates of a total of 22.65 lakh who enrolled for recognition of prior learning passed as on 13 May, 2019. About 17.84 lakh candidates were assessed for RPL from the 22.08 lakh who got trained.
- To enable India to be the skill capital of the world, youth are being trained for specific skills for overseas markets. Agreements with Japan, UAE and other countries are enabling youth in India to be trained to their skill and language levels for specific jobs in those countries.
- To assist youth to understand and decide on which skills they require, counseling centres, many of them as PPP, have been set up. More are underway.
- The impact analysis of the short-term training under PMKVY on employment shows that training and certification has led to a nine-percentage point increase in proportion of employed individuals.
- The training part alone has contributed eight percentage points on employability.
- In terms of income, PMKVY training and certification has contributed 15 per cent to the mean monthly income. The training part had an impact of 9 per cent, as mean monthly income of PMKVY trained individuals was seen to be Rs. 8283 as compared to Rs. 7584 of the comparison group. Certification has been found to have an impact of 9 per cent on the mean monthly income.
- Also, assessment of the impact of the recognition of prior learning on income indicated a significant difference of 19 per cent in the mean monthly income of certified candidates.
- Many training organisations, even though not training under the PMKVY or other Government programmes, have started using these qualifications to meet the needs of employers. Universities and colleges are doing add on programmes with the Skill Councils to make students work ready or to do programmes for those in work to upskill them.
- There are also changes on the anvil. The New Education Policy aims to introduce skills in schools, colleges and Universities. The MSDE is in the process of restructuring the NQSF and the National Council for Vocational Training. There are also discussions on revamping the PMKVY.
The skills ecosystem that has been created could also address the needs the needs of those firms who find it difficult to identify the right people to employ. It could be done by developing the qualification pack for the job role, getting it approved and then working with a training partner to enable the right person to be trained and recruited. Similarly, we could train for the world.
Development with Inclusive Policy
India is the world’s largest democratic country. It is known for its social, cultural and regional diversity. The Constitution of India binds all citizens in a common thread with security of fundamental rights and it is guiding the States to follow Directive Principles of State Policy to deliver services in the best interest of its citizens with an inclusive approach.
Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs) and Inclusion
- The Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs) came into effect in January 2016, and they will continue to guide United Nations Development Programme (UNDP) policy and funding until 2030. India is signatory to it and is committed to global society agenda to reduce all forms of inequality.
- The SDGs are focusing on global efforts to end poverty, to end discrimination and ensure peace and well-being of all. All SDGs are based on certain themes such as people, planet, prosperity, peace and partnership. In the context of inclusion the Goal 10 of Sustainable Development is “to reduce inequality within and among countries”.
- The Goal 16 of the Sustainable Development is dedicated to the promotion of peaceful and inclusive societies for sustainable development, the provision of access to justice for all, and building effective, accountable institutions at all levels.
Inclusive Policy, Strategies and Interventions
Under the Constitutional framework, it is the duty of the Government to protect the social and economic interests of the marginalized and excluded sections of the society with various policies, strategies and interventions. The present Government has taken many initiatives through policies and programmes to create an inclusive society by focusing on marginalized sections of society especially in the areas of social and gender equality, education, health, livelihood, entrepreneurship, electrification, sanitation, drinking water etc.
Women and Girl Child:
- The Government has realized that gender equality and development is one of the areas which need special focus. In order to bring gender equality and empowerment of women many schemes have been launched such as Beti Bachao Beti Padhao (BBBP) for protection of a girl child and to prevent from biased sex selection. It is to ensure the survival, protection and education of girl child.
- The Pre-conception and Pre-natal Diagnostic Techniques (Prohibition of Sex Selection) Act 1994, is aimed at prohibition of misuse of technology to determine the sex of the foetus or to assist in pre-birth sex selection.
- Swadhar Greh Scheme is merger of two important schemes: first Swadhar Scheme 2002 and Short Stay Home Scheme 1969. These two schemes have been merged in Swadhar Greh Scheme to set up homes in each district with a capacity of 30 women. This capacity can ben extended up to 50 to 100 on the basis of need assessment.
- The special intervention for adolescent girls is done through Scheme for Adolescent Girls (SAG) by using the ICDS infrastructure with the aim of breaking the intergenerational life-cycle of nutritional and gender disadvantage, thus providing a supportive environment for self-development of adolescent girls. The key objective of this scheme is to facilitate, educate and empower adolescent girls so as enabling them to become self-reliant and aware citizens. To improve the health status the emphasis is on enabling the adolescent girls (AGs) for self-development and empowerment, improve their nutrition and health status, promote awareness about health, hygiene, nutrition, provide information/guidance about existing public services such as Primary Health Centres, Rural Hospitals/CHCs, Post Office, Bank, Police Station, etc.
- The Maternity Benefit Programme has been implemented from 1 January, 2017 in all the districts of the country. The programme is named as ‘Pradhan Mantri Matru Vandana Yojana’ (PMMVY). Under PMMVY, a cash incentive of Rs. 5000 is provided directly to the Bank/Post Office Account of Pregnant Women and Lactating Mothers (PW&LM) for first living child of the family, subject to fulfilling specific conditions relating to Maternal and Child Health. Kilkari & Mobile Academy is to create proper awareness among pregnant women, parents of children and field workers about the importance of Anti Natal Care (ANC), institutional delivery, Post-Natal Care (PNC) and immunization. It was decided to implement the Kilkari and Mobile Academy services in pan India in a phased manner.
- To protect the rights of women and child the Maternity Benefit (Amendment) Bill, 2016 was passed in which leave was extended to 26 weeks, up from 12 weeks. The bill is benefiting around 1.8 million women working in the organized sector.
- Mahila Police Volunteers, Mahila E Haat, Mudra Loan, and Ujjwala Yojana are very important initiatives. Among all other important schemes, construction of toilet at household level is being done under Swachh Bharat Abhiyan to protect dignity and safety of women.
Scheduled Castes (SCs):
- The Constitution guaranteed special provisions for protection of social and economic rights of the Scheduled caste population. The Government through various Ministries and Departments has many provisions for protecting their rights.
- Babu Jagjivan Ram Chhatrawas Yojana (BJRCY) is for construction of hostels for scheduled caste students, both girls and boys, to provide them equal opportunity for education.
- Pre-Matric scholarship for children of those engaged in hazardous occupations and prone to health problems has been provided by the Department of Social Justice and Empowernment. Pre-Matric scholarship for SC children studying in classes IX and X; Free coaching for preparation of competitive examinations for employment in public and private sector are some other schemes available.
- The National Scheduled Castes Finance and Development Corporation (NSCFDC) has various schemes such as Micro Credit Finance. NSCFDC provides term loan for project(s)/unit(s) costing up to Rs. 5 lakhs. Financial Assistance up to Project Cost of Rs. 60,000 is provided for small income generating activities.
- Mahila Samridhi Yojana is a Micro Finance scheme for females with rebate in interest. Financial Assistance up to Rs. 60,000 is also provided.
- Mahila Kisan Yojana is exclusively for rural women for taking up agricultural and/or mixed farming-related economic activities for projects cost up to Rs. 2,00,000. Shilpi Samriddhi Yojana provides financial assistance up to project cost of Rs. 2,00,000 for small income generating activities. Laghu Vyavsay Yojana is for providing financial assistance up to 90% where unit cost is Rs. 5 lakhs in the form of loan and easy repayment basis for small income generating activities.
- The Protection of Civil Rights Act, 1955 and the Scheduled Castes and the Scheduled Tribes (Prevention of Atrocities) Act, 1989 is considered as one of the strong measures to protect dignity and freedom of SCs and STs. The Article 17 of Constitution of India laid the foundation for providing legal protection to SCs and STs against offences related to untochability and atrocities.
Scheduled Tribes (STs):
- The Ministry of Tribal Affairs focuses on the social and economic development of STs. New initiatives are taken for economic empowerment and to recognize the tribal culture. Museums have been constructed to highlight the contribution of tribal freedom fighters. Various schemes are initiated to bridge the gap in literacy levels between the general population and tribal population.
- Major thrust is given on setting up of Eklavya Model Residential schools (EMRSs) with the aim of expanding the reach of good quality education among the tribal persons. There are arrangements for school buildings including hostels and staff quarters, provision for a playground, students’ computer lab, teacher resource room etc.
- Pre Matric Scholarship, Post Matric Scholarship, National Fellowship and Scholarship Scheme for higher education of ST students, National Overseas Scholarship for ST students have also been provided.
- The Van Dhan Yojana aims to provided skill upgradation and capacity building training along with setting up of primary processing and value addition facility. Ministry of Tribal Affairs organized a National Tribal Festival named as ‘Aadi Mahotsava’ to celebrate, cherish and promote the spirit of tribal craft, culture, cuisine and commerce. More than 1000 Artisans from 20 States, 80 Tribal Chefs and 14 Dance Troupes comprising more than 250 Artists participated in the Mahotsav.
- An outlay of Rs. 118.65 crore has been made to various States under the scheme Special Central Assistance to Tribal Sub-Scheme (SCA to TSS) and grants under Article 275(1) for skill development of more than 31,000 male and female tribal beneficiaries. Skill development covers various trades such as planning and management including office management, solar technician/ electrician, beautician, handicraft, skills required for construction works (such as plumbing, mason, electrician, fitter, welder, and more. An online monitoring system has been put in place by the Ministry of Tribal Sub-Plan (TSP)/ Schedule Tribe Component (STC) funds.
- A customized proforma has also been developed to capture the location of ongoing projects and beneficiary details.
Other Backward Classes (OBCs)/De-notified, Nomadic and Semi-Nomadic Tribes (DNTs)/ Economically Backward Classes (EBCs):
- The Government of India also initiated many schemes for protection of educational and economic interest of OBCs/DNTs/EBCs.
- Assistance for Skill Development of OBCs/DNTs/EBCs (NGO Scheme) is to involve the Voluntary Organization and National Backward Classes Finance and Development Corporation (NBCFDC) to improve educational and socio-economic conditions of the target group, i.e., OBCs/DNTs/EBCs, with a view to upgrade their skill to enable them to start income generation activities on their own or get gainfully employed in some sector or the other. The beneficiaries whose parents’/guardians’ income from all sources including the income of beneficiary does not exceed Rs. 1 lakh per annum are eligible under the Scheme. Scheme of Free Coaching for SC and OBC Students is to provide coaching to enable them to prepare for competitive examinations for jobs of public and private sectors.
- Ambedkar Central Sector Scheme of Interest Subsidy on Educational Loans for Overseas Studies for Other Backward Classes (OBCs) and Economically Backward Classes (EBCs) provide interest subsidy on educational loans for overseas studies to promote educational advancement of students from OBCs and EBCs. This is a Central Sector Scheme to provide interest subsidy to the student belonging to the OBCs and EBCs on the interest payable for the period of moratorium for the Education Loans for overseas studies to pursue approved courses of studies abroad at Masters, M.Phil. and Ph.D.level.
- Entrepreneurial schemes of NBCFDC is for women belonging to backward classes known as New Swarnima Scheme. If women belonging to backward classes having income less than double the poverty line are eligible to get loan up to Rs. 1,00,000 at the rate 5% from NBCFDC.
- Other schemes such as Shilp Sampada, Mahila Samridhi Yojana, Krishi Sampada are for the Backward Classes as notified by Central Government/State Governments from time to time. The annual family income of the applicant should be less than Rs. 1,03,000 p.a. in urban areas and Rs. 81,000 p.a. in rural areas.
- Under Assistance to Divyangjan for purchase/fitting of aids and appliances (ADIP) schemes, 1456 ADIP camps were organized and more than 2.40 lakh Divyangjan were provided Aids Assistive Devices in the year 2018.
- The National Awards for Empowerment of Persons with Disabilities, Ministry of Social Justice and Empowerment in New Delhi on 3 December, 2018 on the occasion of International Day of Persons with Disabilities.
- Accessible India Campaign (AIC) was launched on 3 December, 2015, for creating universal accessibility for Persons with Disabilities in Built Environment, Transport, and Information & Communication Technology (ICT) ecosystem.
- The Unique Disability Identification Project is aimed to create national database for PwDs, to issue Unique Disability ID (UDID) Card along with disability certificate to everyone. So far, 463 districts of 27 States/UTs have generated 11.20 lakh e-UDID Cards.
- The National Trust for the Welfare of Persons with Autism, Cerebral Palsy, Mental Retardation and Multiple Disabilities, and Inclusive India Initiative was launched. First Indian Sign Language Dictionary of 3000 words was developed by Indian Sign Language Research and Training Centre (ISLRTC), New Delhi. A Composite Regional Centre for Persons with Disabilities at Narsingarh, West Tripura was inaugurated on 8 June, 2018.
- For disseminating information and creating awareness various workshops and events were held at national and international level and all stakeholders participated in these events to extend their support. Indian Sign language Research and Training Centre celebrated “Sign Language Day” on 23 September, 2018.
- A National Workshop on Physical and Mental Disabilities in the light of Global Best Practices in Care under the Chairmanship of the Minister of Social Justice and Empowerment was conducted. The aim is to encourage adaptation of global best practices in the Indian context.
- There are many Government schemes that are focusing on providing equal opportunities to minorities.
- Minority Concentration Areas (MCAs) namely Minority Concentration Blocks (MCB), Minority Concentration Towns (MCT), and Minority Concentration District Head Quarters (MCD Hq) are relatively backward and have been identified on the basis of select socio-economic and basic amenities parameters of Census 2011 data by identifying areas having more than 25% minority population, where socio-economic or basic amenities parameters are found below the national average.
- These areas have been identified for implementation of Pradhan Mantri Jan Vikas Karyakram (PMJVK) to improve such parametres which are below the national average by focusing on the areas of education, health and skill development, apart from the other areas, wherever need is felt.
- Pradhan Mantri Jan Vikas Karyakram (PMJVK) restricted Multi-Sectoral Development Programme (MsDP) implemented in identified Minority Concentration Blocks, Minority Concentration Towns, Minority Concentration District Headquarters and clusters of villages for infrastructure development.
- In the area of education, Pre-Matric Scholarship Scheme, Post-Matric Scholarship Scheme and Merit-cum-Means based Scholarship Scheme aim at educational empowerment Maulana Azad National Fellowship is for empowerment of research fellows.
- Naya Savera is a free coaching and allied Scheme to enhance skills and knowledge of students and candidates for their employment through competitive examinations and admission in technical and professional courses.
- Padho Pardesh Scheme is for interest subsidy on educational loans for overseas studies in technical and professional courses.
- Nai Udaan is to support students clearing Preliminary Examination conducted by Union Public Service Commission (UPSC), Staff Selection Commission (SSC), State Public Service Commission (PSC), etc. Jiyo Parsi Scheme is for containing the population decline of Parsis.
- Nai Roshni Scheme is for leadership development of minority women.
- Seekho aur Kamao is a Skill development initiative for minorities. Nai Manzil Scheme is for formal school education and skilling of school dropouts.
- USTTAD is for upgrading the skills and training in traditional arts/crafts for development.
- Hamari Dharohar Scheme is to preserve the rich heritage of minority communities under the overall concept of Indian culture.
Economically Weaker Sections (EWS):
- For protection of right of health of the poor population two major initiatives in health sector have been taken under the Ayushman Bharat Programme. First is Health and Wellness Centres and second is the National Health Protection Scheme (NHPS). The goal of this intervention is to address health needs in holistic manner in primary, secondary and tertiary care systems, covering both prevention and health promotion.
- National Health Protection Scheme, which will cover over 10 crore poor and vulnerable families (approximately 50 crore beneficiaries) is providing coverage up to 5 lakh rupees per family per year for secondary and tertiary care hospitalization. The beneficiaries will not be required to pay any charges and premium for the hospitalization expenses. The benefit also includes pre-and post- hospitalization expenses.
- ‘Ayushman Mitra’ is to assist patients and will coordinate with beneficiaries and the hospital in each empanelled public and private hospital.
- National Nutrition Mission (NNM) has been set up as a comprehensive approach towards raising nutrition levels in the country on a war footing. ICT is used to reach out to the women, children and poor.
- For economically weaker sections (EWS) of the society the Government announced 10 per cent EWS Reservation. The persons belonging to EWS who are not covered under the scheme of reservation for SCs, STs and OBCs shall get 10 percent reservation in education and employment. Articles 15(6) and 16(6) have been inserted in the Constitution, vide the Constitution (One Hundred and Third Amendment) Act, 2019.
- Pradhan Mantri Shram Yogi Maandhan Scheme is to ensure fixed monthly pension to 10 crore unorganized sector workers. Rs. 3000 per month after the 60 years of age with an affordable contribution of only Rs. 100/55 per month. Twelve crore small and marginal farmers to be provided with assured yearly income of Rs. 6000 per annum under PM-KISAN.
- In view of the social and economic disparities between marginalized and the general population, large number of initiatives have been taken by the Government and some of which are mentioned above.
- Participation of all stakeholders especially local administrative bodies is required; orientation and training of key personnel is important for removing attitudinal barriers and adoption of an inclusive approach.
Use of all possible means of communication in regional languages is required for awareness generation and publicity of government schemes.
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