PIB Analysis Date: 18/12/2018

PIB ANALYSIS FOR UPSC CIVIL SERVICES EXAM

Topics Covered

  1. Rajkumar Shukla
  2. India Becoming World’s Fastest Growing Economy
  3. National e-vidhan application
  4. Re-imposition of Restricted Area Permit regime in six Islands in Andaman & Nicobar Islands inhabited by tribes
  5. Year end review
  6. Based on the questions asked in the Parliament

1 . Rajkumar Shukla

Issue of commemorative Postage Stamp on Rajkumar Shukla

About Rajkumar Shukla

  • Rajkumar Shukla was the person who convinced Mahatmas Gandhi to visit Champaran.
  • During the 31st session of the Congress in Lucknow in 1916, Gandhiji met Raj Kumar Shukla, a representative of farmers from Champaran, who requested him to come and see for himself the miseries of the indigo ryots there
  • Upon his request Mahatama Gandhi arrived in Champaran with his team of eminent nationalists Rajendra Prasad, N Parekh, JD Kriplani, M Desai and Mazhar-ul-Haq  and the Champaran Satyagraha began

About Champaran Satyagraha

Background

  • Champaran Satyagraha is a story of Gandhiji’s first significant non-political grassroots struggle for the cause of poor and exploited peasants in Champaran district in North Bihar located in the foot hills of Himalayas.
  • With the advent of Indigo (Neel) factories, about 70 in number, British Planters invaded the Champaran area in the early nineteenth century and took over the cultivation from gawky Zamindars and thekedars.
  • The British planters forced the tenant farmers to cultivate indigo (Neel) in three twentieth part of a Bigha of their operational holding. Twenty Kathias made a Bigha – a measurement of land that was about one third of a hectare. Hence, it also came to be known as Teen Kathia system.
  • The Planters chose the best portions of land for indigo cultivation and offered very low prices for the indigo output that failed even to cover the cost of cultivation. For about a hundred years the poor peasants suffered indignity, physical abuse and exploitation. The British administration was at best indifferent

Intervention by Gandhiji

  • In December 1916 Shukla attended the Lucknow Congress and was after the Congress leaders to take up the cause of indigo farmers. When he learnt that Gandhiji was there attending the Congress he searched for him and met him. ‘Vakil Babu will tell you everything about our distresses’, he would go on repeating. The Vakil Babu was none other than Babu Brajkishore Prasad, who would become a close Gandhi associate in near future.
  • At that point Gandhiji was not impressed from what he saw in the Vakil Babu. In his characteristic way Gandhiji told the Vakil Babu, ‘I can give no opinion without seeing the condition with my own eyes’, and suggested him to move resolution in the Congress and leave him alone. But Shukla would not leave Gandhiji alone. He followed him everywhere and finally Gandhiji travelled with him from Kolkata in train to Patna on April 9, 1917.
  • The local administration viewed Gandhiji’s visit suspiciously and responded by issuing local ordinances to stop him from his investigations. The District Magistrate asked him to leave the area immediately or face imprisonment.
  • This became a high drama in the whole of Champaran Satyagraha right in the beginning! Gandhiji first gently refused to leave the district before completing his inquiry and then when asked to present himself in the court pleaded guilty. However, for the night before the appearance Gandhi wrote letters to Maganlal Gandhi at Ashram, Henry Polak, Mazharul Haq, Madanmohan Malaviya and many others about the possibility of his arrest.
  • He also wrote to the Private Secretary to the Viceroy and informed that he was returning the Kaiser-iHind Gold Medal awarded to him in South Africa for his humanitarian services by the British Royalty.
  • On his submission to the Magistrate Gandhi ji that he was invited by farmers to inquire into their conditions and thus he was duty bound to do so. He did not want to disobey the law, but he submitted, ‘Amid this conflict of duty, I could only throw the responsibility of removing me from them on the administration… It is my firm belief that in the complex constitution under which we are living…What I have decided to do, that is, to submit without protest to the penalty of disobedience… I have disregarded the order served upon me, not for want of respect for lawful authority, but in obedience of the higher law of our being, the law of conscience’.
  • The district administration was worried; the British Planters sensed their defeat and combined pressure was exerted on the Bihar Governor to stop Gandhiji.
  • Governor summoned Gandhiji and shared the apprehensions and asked to stop the work and submit a report. Gandhiji agreed to submit an interim report but refused to discontinue the inquiry.
  • The Governor upon receiving the preliminary report constituted a committee in which he invited Gandhiji to join as a member representing the farmers.
  • Gandhiji agreed on one condition that he would be allowed to make presentation as the aggrieved party. Gandhiji and his team had collected about 12,000 cases substantiated with evidences and his presentation was very effective. The Committee submitted its report in October 1917 with unanimous recommendations.
  • The Planters association protested and tried to stop the Report being accepted. The Report was accepted, a Bill was introduced in the Bihar Council on 4 March 1919 which became a law soon.
  • The notorious Teen Kathia was gone and tenant farmers were given relief on many other counts. The British Planters and factory owners were asked to pay back the farmers 25 per cent of Tawan they had collected.

2 . India Becoming World’s Fastest Growing Economy

India Becoming World’s Fastest Growing Economy

About the Release

  • The share of Indian economy in world(measured as a ratio of India’s GDP to world’s GDP at current US$) increased from 2.6 percent in 2014 to 3.2 percent in 2017 (as per World Development Indicators database).
  • The average share of Indian economy in world during 1960 to 2013 was 1.8 percent. The average growth of the Indian economy during 2014-15 to 2017-18 was 7.3 per cent, fastest among the major economies in the world.
  • Indian economy is projected to be the fastest growing major economy in 2018-19 and 2019-20 (International Monetary Fund October 2018 database). This is borne by GDP growth of 7.6 per cent in the first half of 2018-19.

3 National e-vidhan application

National e-Vidhan Application (NeVA) Project

  • Paperless Assembly or e-Assembly is a concept involving of electronic means to facilitate the work of Assembly. It enables automation of entire law making process, tracking of decisions and documents, sharing of information.
  • NeVA aims to bring all the legislatures of the country together, in one platform thereby creating a massive data depository without having the complexity of multiple applications
  • NeVA is a device neutral and member centric application created to equip them to handle diverse House Business smartly by putting entire information regarding member contact details, rules of procedure, list of business, notices, bulletins, bills, starred/unstarred questions and answers, papers laid, committee reports etc. in their hand held devices/ tablets and equip all Legislatures/ Departments to handle it efficiently.
  • Citizens would also gain access to this information at their fingertips
  • e -Vidhan is a Mission Mode Project (MMP) included in Digital India Programme and Ministry of Parliamentary Affairs (MoPA) is the ‘Nodal Ministry’ for its implementation in all the 31 States/ UTs with Legislatures.

4 . Re-imposition of Restricted Area Permit regime in six Islands in Andaman & Nicobar Islands inhabited by tribes

Chairperson, NCST writes to Union Home Minister seeking re-imposition of Restricted Area Permit regime in six Islands in Andaman & Nicobar Islands inhabited by tribes

Background

  • The National Commission for Scheduled Tribes has regretted that inspite of reservations expressed by the Commission for excluding 29 inhabited islands in Andaman and Nicobar from Restricted Area Permit regime, the Ministry of Home Affairs on 17th September, 2018 have further relaxed the provisions by deleting the requirement of mandatory registration by foreigners visiting A&N Islands with FRO and added Viper Island to the list of islands already exempted by its circular dated 29th June, 2018.
  • The Commission is of the view that the above directives of the Ministry of Home Affairs are not in consonance with the spirit of Article 338A (9) of the Constitution of India which mandates that “Union and every State Government should consult the Commission on all major policy matters affecting Scheduled Tribes.”

Commission, after careful consideration, recommends the following steps to be taken by the Government of India and Andaman Administration for protection of five Particularly Vulnerable Tribes (PVTGs) living in Andaman and Nicobar Islands on urgent basis:

  • The names of Strait Island (Andamanese), Middle and South Andaman (Jarawas), North Sentinal Island (Sentinelese), Little Andaman (Onges) and Great Nicobar (Shompens) inhabited by PVTGs should be removed from the list of 29 islands mentioned in Annexure to the Circular No.506 dated 29th June, 2018 of the Ministry of Home Affairs.
  • Large size posters/hoardings should  be put up at the airport, seaport and all other important places in Andaman and Nicobar Islands decrying tourism and/or visit of any kind by the people to the above six islands inhabited by the PVTGs.
  • Surveillance and patrolling including the checking of vessels/vehicles found abutting the above six Islands should be strengthened by UT Police and Coast Guards.  Daily Incident Report (DIR) on their patrolling activities should be webhosted in the official website of Andaman Administration and other related public portals.
  • Air space above the North Sentinel Island should be declared as “NO FLY ZONE” for any type of civil aircraft.
  • A comprehensive outreach programme should be launched by Andaman and Nicobar Administration to sensitize fishermen, tourist guides, tour operators, hotel industry and other stake holders on the “EYES ON” and “HANDS OFF” policy for Sentinelese so that they can be eyes and ears of the Administration.

5 . Year End Review

  • Council of Scientific and Industrial Research (Ministry of Science & Technology)
  • Government initiatives in North East Region

6 . Based on the questions asked in the Parliament

National Mission for Sustainable Agriculture

  • NMSA aims at making agriculture more productive, sustainable, remunerative and climate resilient by promoting location specific  integrated /composite farming systems; soil and moisture conservation measures; comprehensive soil health management; efficient water management practices and mainstreaming rainfed technologies.

Selling of agricultural produce at MSP

  • Government fixes minimum support prices (MSPs) of 22 mandated agricultural crops and fair and remunerative price (FRP) for sugarcane on the basis of recommendations of the Commission for Agricultural Costs and Prices (CACP).
  • National Commission on Farmers (NCF) headed by Dr. M.S. Swaminathan has recommended that the MSP should be at least 50 percent more than the weighted average cost of production.
  • However, when the National Policy for Farmers, 2007 was finalized by the then Government, this recommendation of providing 50 per cent returns over cost of production was not included. Dr. M. S. Swaminathan in his Report on NCF had discussed different dimensions of fixing MSPs, but while finalizing National Policy on Farmers, the then Government had accepted the current established methods.
  • Government has increased the MSPs for all mandated crops with a return of atleast 50 percent of cost of production for the season 2018-19.
  • Cost of production is one of the important factors in the determination of MSPs. While recommending its price policy, the CACP considers all costs in a comprehensive manner.
  • The costs include all paid out costs such as those incurred on account of hired human labour, bullock labour/machine labour, rent paid for leased in land, expenses incurred in cash and kind on the use of material inputs like seeds, fertilizers, manures, irrigation charges, depreciation on implements and farm buildings, interest on working capital, diesel/electricity for operation of pump sets etc, miscellaneous expenses and imputed value of family labour.

Schemes for construction of godowns

  • Private Entrepreneurs Guarantee (PEG) Scheme: Under this Scheme, which was formulated in 2008, storage capacity is created by private parties, Central Warehousing Corporation (CWC) and State Government Agencies for guaranteed hiring by FCI. Under this scheme, no funds are allocated by Government for construction of godowns and full investment is done by the private parties/CWC/State Agencies by arranging their own funds and land. After a godown is constructed and taken over by Food Corporation of India (FCI), storage charges are paid to the investor for a guaranteed period of 9/10 years irrespective of the quantum of foodgrains stored.
  • Central Sector Scheme: This scheme is implemented in the North Eastern States along with Himachal Pradesh, Jharkhand and Kerala. Funds are released by Government to FCI and also directly to State Governments for construction of godowns.
  • Construction of Steel Silos: In addition to conventional godowns, construction of steel silos has been undertaken in Public Private Partnership (PPP) mode for modernizing storage infrastructure and improving shelf life of stored foodgrains. As on 31.10.2018, a capacity of 11.75 LMT silos has been created.

Criteria for Antayodaya Anna Yojana

As per the guidelines issued by the Government, the AAY families are to be identified by States/Union Territories (UTs) as per the following criteria:

  • Landless agriculture labourers, marginal farmers, rural artisans /craftsmen, such as potters, tanners, weavers, blacksmiths, carpenters, slum dwellers and persons earning their livelihood on daily basis in the informal sector like porters, coolies, rickshaw pullers, hand cart pullers, fruit and flower sellers, snake charmers, rag pickers, cobblers, destitute and other similar categories in both rural and urban areas
  • Households headed by widows or terminally ill persons/disabled persons/ persons aged 60 years or more with no assured means of subsistence or societal support
  • Widows or terminally ill persons or disabled persons or persons aged 60 years or more or single women or single men with no family or societal support or assured means of subsistence
  • All primitive tribal households
  • All eligible Below Poverty Line (BPL) families of HIV positive persons.

Laws to check scams in Banks

The Government has initiated formulation of laws to secure prudential banking and help effect a culture of credit discipline, including, inter alia, in terms of the following:-

  1. Insolvency and Bankruptcy Code, 2016 (IBC) has been enacted to create a unified framework for resolving insolvency and bankruptcy matters. IBC, by adopting a creditor-in-saddle approach, with the interim resolution professional taking over management of affairs of corporate debtor at the outset, coupled with debarment of wilful defaulters and persons associated with NPA accounts from the resolution process, has effected a fundamental change in the creditor-debtor relationship.
  2. The Banking Regulation Act, 1949 has been amended to provide for authorisation to Reserve Bank of India to issue directions to banks to initiate the insolvency resolution process under IBC.
  3. The Fugitive Economic Offenders Act, 2018 has been enacted to deter economic offenders from evading the process of Indian law by remaining outside the jurisdiction of Indian courts, provides for attachment of property of a fugitive economic offender, confiscation of such offender’s property and disentitlement of the offender from defending any civil claim.
  4. To make other recovery mechanisms as well more effective, the Securitisation and Reconstruction of Financial Assets and Enforcement of Security Interest Act, 2002 (SARFAESI Act) has been amended to provide for three months’ imprisonment in case borrower does not provide asset details, and for lender getting possession of mortgaged property within 30 days. Six new Debts Recovery Tribunals (DRTs) have been established and the minimum pecuniary limit for filing of cases in DRTs has been revised in 2018 from Rs. 10 lakh to Rs. 20 lakh to enable focus on higher value cases in these fast-track tribunals.

Cyber Security

Government has taken a number of legislative, technical and institutional measures for addressing issues related to cyber security. These include National Cyber Security policy (2013), enactment of Information Technology (IT) Act, 2000 and setting up of Indian Computer Emergency Response Team (CERT-In). Some specific measures taken by the Government of India to strengthen cyber security system in the country are as under:

  • National Cyber Security Coordinator (NCSC) under National Security Council Secretariat (NSCS) coordinates with different agencies at the national level for cyber security matters.
  • Information Technology Act, 2000 was enacted to provide legal recognition for electronic communication, electronic commerce and cyber crimes etc. IT Act has deterrent provisions to deal with cyber threats and cyber attacks.
  • The Indian Computer Emergency Response Team (CERT-In) issues alerts and advisories regarding latest cyber threats and countermeasures on regular basis.
  • National Critical Information Infrastructure Protection Centre (NCIIPC) has been established for protection of critical information infrastructure in the country.
  • Cyber security exercises are being conducted regularly to enable assessment of preparedness of organizations in Government and critical sectors.
  • Guidelines have been issued for Chief Information Security Officers (CISOs) regarding their key roles and responsibilities for securing applications / infrastructure and compliance.
  • Cyber Swachhta Kendra (Botnet Cleaning and Malware Analysis Centre) has been launched for detection of malicious programs and provide free tools to remove the same.
  • National Cyber Coordination Centre (NCCC) has set up to generate necessary situational awareness of existing and potential cyber security threats and enable timely information sharing for proactive, preventive and protective actions by individual entities.
  • All the new government websites and applications are audited prior to their hosting and on regular basis after hosting. 
  • CERT-In conducts regular training programmes for network / system administrators and Chief Information Security Officers (CISOs) of Government and critical sector organisations regarding securing the IT infrastructure and mitigating cyber attacks.
  • Under Cyber Crime Prevention for Women and Children (CCPWC) Scheme, Government of India has released grants to States/UTs including Andhra Pradesh for setting up of a Cyber Forensic cum Training Laboratory and organizing capacity building programme on cyber awareness and cyber crime investigation. Rs. 4.42   Crore has been released to Andhra Pradesh for the purpose.
  • A Division has been established under the Ministry of Home Affairs to deal with Cyber and Information Security.
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