Insights Secure-2014: Questions On Current Events and General Studies

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31 May 2014

Answer ALL the following questions in about 200 words

  1. “When it comes to economic matters, the government is an enabler and facilitator. Its primary job is to develop and maintain a system in which people – the rich and the poor – can take steps by themselves to better their lives. ” In the light of the statement, critically examine the nature of poverty removal programmes in India.

Business Standard

  1. Write a note on the proposed diamond quadrilateral railway project. Do you think such a project is feasible in the current economic conditions? Comment.

Business Standard

  1. In your opinion, what are the big problems that agriculture in India is facing at present. Do you think myriad schemes and programmes are able to effectively address these problems? Critically evaluate.

The Hindu

  1. Comment why many bird species in India are becoming extinct in recent years.

The Hindu

  1. Critically examine the changing role of military in Pakistan’s domestic and foreign affairs in recent years.

The Hindu

  1. Do you agree with the proposal that privatisation of public sector banks is need of the hour to reform banking sector in India? Critically comment.

The Hindu

GENERAL STUDIES

  1. Critically comment on Jawaharlal Nehru’s contribution to strengthening democracy in India post-Independence.

Business Standard

SCIENCE AND TECHNOLOGY

  1. Write a note on the involvement of private sector in recent years in space exploration.

The Hindu

  1. Write a note on the McLanahan Nutrient Separation System and its applications.

The Hindu

  • Q1

    1. “When it comes to economic matters, the government is an enabler and facilitator. Its primary job is to develop and maintain a system in which people – the rich and the poor – can take steps by themselves to better their lives. ” In the light of the statement, critically examine the nature of poverty removal programmes in India.

    • SS

      Expecting the government and bureaucrats to wave a magic wand and bring a total end to poverty is childish at its best. A more logical expectation would be for the government to provide means for the poor to pull themselves out of their poverty. Which means the poor must be given the skills in order to become employable. The top most reasons for non employability of poor is poor health and poor vocational skills.
      Indira Gandhi Mathrithva Sahyog yojana, Rashtriya Swasthya Yojana etc. are some examples of the direction in which healthcare in the country should proceed. However, it is required that such schemes be reviewed and remodelled to maximise efficiency and reach, especially among the urban poor that live in slums.
      Encouragement must be given for schemes like National Rural Livelihood Mission in order for it to benefit the masses. When it comes to the implementation of such schemes, a lackadaisical approach is encountered too often. More vocational training courses, through night classes can be organised in even the remotest villages if the government and NGOs come together.
      The next step would be to create an environment where jobs are generated and unemployed are engaged in fruitful activities. An overhaul of MNREGA, weeding out the corrupt, and diverting manual labour into infrastructure projects will not only help employ the unskilled sector, but will also ease the infrastructure development activities in the country. Another approach would involve incentives in private sectors to maintain and further diversify their economic activities leading to generation of jobs.
      All of this can be a success only if the public is able to trust its government and hence work wholeheartedly with it. This is possible only if the government shows transparency in its decisions and actions. A synergy has to be built between the government and the common man because governance at a country level can be a success only if the governed take full participation and responsibility at the micro levels.

    • Economy of a country and its well-being surely depends on all the stake holders involved in it like the Government, Investors(Public + Private), Human Capital) and if one overlaps the other the economy will go down. This was the attitude of all the governments in power. The state is acting as a mediator between the so called poor and the capitalists/investors. The policies were biased towards just the so called peoples well-being.
      This is where all the governments are going in a wrong way designed by politicians and bureaucrats. The state should only be a facilitator and enabler. It should not try to give the needy what they want instead teach the person to come out of their misery on their own.(Teach to catch Fish instead of giving them the fish). – provide the right impetus to the industry and right skills to the human capital so that they can earn on their own.
      But off-late government policies are recognizing this, with the introduction of Rashtriya krishi vikas yojana and few others of the same. But if we see other schemes like MGNREGA-scheme designed to uplift the poor, Food Security scheme though started on a good note are major factors for rising fiscal deficits.
      On this note, it is high time that the new govt in place should review these policies without affecting the beneficiaries much and sending the wrong signal among the masses.

    • Rahul Kumar

      Rahul
      According to world bank report 2014,there are 148 million people living under extreme poverty in India.Also UN report 2013 states that 1/3rd of world’s poorest people live in India.
      In the light of these data the work of government becomes extremely important with regards to poverty alleviation program.It is extremely essential that government formulate the policies,which enables both rich and poor to take steps themselves to better their lives.
      But the current situation is that there is so much of poverty alleviation program in India that even the search of right beneficiaries of these programs consume huge resources.With overlapping schemes lead to severe corruption in it’s implementation. Programs like Annapurna,Indira-Awas yojana,National family benefit schemes,National maternity benefit schemes are there to take them out of their misery but not from the sustainable poverty.
      Government should provide such an environment in which they can get job and take care of all these needs which they get out of these programs.For this, people need vocational training,skill development,good health care then only they can get out of this vicious circle of poverty.
      So for this Government have to increase spending on healthcare,education,good infrastructure which is important for increased economic activities and job creation.
      Merely distributing doles,subsidies,and a web of poverty alleviation program doesn’t help in alleviating poverty in long run.

      • VKN

        beautifully articulated…

    • chetanrkmeena

      गरीबी देश के विकास में एक प्रमुख बाधा है जिसे सम्मलित रूप सरकार द्वारा उपयुक्त परिस्थितियां तथा सहयोग एवं लोगों द्वारा इन अवसरों का समुचित लाभ उठा कर दूर किया जा सकता है.
      गरीबी उन्मूलन के लिए विविध स्वरुप एवं लक्ष्यों वालें कार्यक्रम चलाये जा रहे है जिनका प्रमुखता से फोकस कृषि है क्योंकि अधिकांश गरीब लोग कृषि में संलग्न है.
      मनरेगा ऐसे कार्यक्रमों में प्रमुख है. इसके तहत सरकार ग्रामीण अकुशल श्रमिकों को आजीविका देने के साथ साथ कृषि विकास हेतु आवश्यक अवसरंचना के विकास पर बल दे रही है ताकि कृषि वृधि दर बढ़ा कर गरीबी दूर की जा सके.
      शहरी तथा ग्रामीण बेरोजगारों में कौशल विकास तथा वित्तीय सहायता देकर NULM तथा NRLM कार्यक्रमों के माध्यम से गरीबी उन्मूलन का प्रयास किया जा रहा है.इससे देश में क्षमता निर्माण में भी सहयोग मिलेगा.
      साथ ही NFSA तथा भारत स्वास्थ्य मिशन जैसे कार्यक्रमों से गरीब लोगों को स्वस्थ एवं उत्पादक बने रहने में सहयोग किया जा रहा है ताकि वे निरतर मजदूरी कर जीविका अर्जित कर सके.
      इसप्रकार सरकार गरीबी निवारण हेतु चौतरफा प्रयास कर रही है परन्तु कार्यान्वयन के स्तर पर कमी तथा गरीबों की पहचान की पुख्ता पद्धति न होने के कारण आशान्वित लाभ नहीं मिल पाया है.
      अत उपरोक्त योजनायों को सहभागी बनाकर एवं सोशल ऑडिट के माध्यम से जवाबदेहिता सुनिचित कर परिणामों को सुधार जा सकता है.

    • vinn

      After independence, India’s approach to tackle issue of development of masses had been derived from welfare state concept and from socialist ideology based centre-to-left approach.
      In order to remove poverty, government strategies have changed over period of time. (as described in chronology below)

      Early 1950s ( Growth pole led trickle down effect along with top-down approach of community development programme)–> Later in 70’s “garibi hatao’ along with ‘common minimum programme’ were prominent. Respite came from GR in agriculture but benefits got skewed–> Learning of past shifted Government stand to concept of empowerment with schemes for promoting ‘swarojgaris’ in 1980s.

      Despite best of efforts poverty remained a social-economical-political menace.
      Paradigm shift in poverty eradication came in 1980’s. with promotion of self-employment and education-vocation concept (under national education policy 1986) government has realized that empowerment one of the best tool. Poverty erdication cannt happen only from top-down method; it required active community participation and decentralization is key for it. ( concepts of SHGs, Role of Panchayats, NGOs thus promoted).
      As Bill Gates once said “in this century, leaders will be those who empowers the other”. Government has now shifted to greater humanisitic approach & has accorded right to work as fundamental right( ex. MGNREGA ) .

      If india has to succeed it must fulfil MDG goal-1 i.e. eradicating extreme hunger and poverty and it can happen when a convergance approach of education, vocation, skill development, empowering farmers, promoting MSMEs & propogating decentralized way of development and poverty eradication is followed.

  • In your opinion, what are the big problems that agriculture in India is facing at present. Do you think myriad schemes and programmes are able to effectively address these problems? Critically evaluate

    Agriculture is undoubtedly the most important sector in India as more than 58% of total population directly depends on agricultural activities.However, its utterly low contribution of 14.5% of country’s total GDP makes India a ‘market failure’ economy.

    In my opinion,Indian agricultural sector has been facing the following serious challenges:
    – Nevertheless India had attained self sufficiency owing to Green revolution in 1970s to an extent,lack of adequate supplemented measures to be followed later again resulted in supply side constraints ie.,inadequate production and productivity of agricultural products.(both primary and protein rich food products)
    – Lack of adequate and timely availability of inputs like seeds,power,fertilizers and irrigated water for small farmers.
    – lack of expediency in large irrigation projects
    – In spite of having efficient scientific and technical expertise,the pace at which the R&D extension programmes are being taken place is extremley slow.
    -Lack of effective and robust infrastructural facilities-cold storage facilities,dry godowns etc.,
    -Ineffective implementation of land reforms and consolidation of lands,

    However,GOI has been implementing several programmes to strengthen agricultural sector in India which include-National agri policy,2000,Rastriya krishi vikas yogna,Insurance schemes,National food security mission,2007 etc.,However,majority of the programmes being implemented by the state and central governments have been overlapping in their objectives there by ultimately resulting in confusion and ineffective implementation.Moreover,a large number of subsidized schemes have been effective in reaching the targeted groups(small and marginal farmers).The government has been giving primacy to quantity of programmes rather than transparency and quality.Such approach is proving to be ineffective.Hence,it is now essential for govt to ensure transparency and targeted nature in their subsidized schemes,integrated and holistic approach from central and state governments in implementing low number but transparent development schemes.

  • A K N

    Q2.Write a note on the proposed diamond quadrilateral railway project. Do you think such a project is feasible in the current economic conditions? Comment.

    • AKN

      Diamond quadrilateral railway project involves creating four
      high-speed railway corridors connecting the four metros of India. It
      requires laying down new high-quality tracks for 7000 km at an expense
      of 12 lakh crore rupees approximately.

      This will not only revolutionize freight transport between the metros
      but also the smaller towns en-route. This will help in establishing a
      national common market for perishables by bringing down price
      asymmetries. It will be welcome addition to basic infrastructure, the
      lack of which is the major reason for stagnation in the secondary
      sector. It will also mitigate supply-side constraints in the sector.
      Thus it is patent that this project would be good for Indian economy
      in the long run.

      But financing the initial investment will be a hurdle for the govt.
      Raising sovereign wealth bonds, a PPPP initiative, registering it as
      a Public Ltd company and tapping capital market are some the options
      the govt should consider. Admittedly infrastructure projects have a
      long gestation period but its risk-to-returns ratio is also better,
      and as such a preferred option for entities with deep pockets.
      Therefore the govt can get the required financing, it only has to look
      in the right places.

    • rss998

      Diamond Quadrilateral is the name given to proposed high speed rail link between 4 metros, on the lines of Golden Quadrilateral project. This high speed rail link would support average train speed upwards of 200 kmph, covering a app distance of 7000 km and would entail a investment of app Rs 12 lac crores. This project requires laying out new rail lines with modern technology, as current lines can sustain avg speed of 90-100kmph only.
      It is imperative for a geographically far flung country like India, to have High speed connectivity between major cities. High speed and cheaper links between cities will help develop synergies and will be a vehicle for development.
      However proposed cost seems a dampener for otherwise great idea. Even if govt go for public private partnership model, govt’s participation would entail a big budgetary support, which in the current times can be a recipe for higher deficit and inflation. We will be importing everything form technology to equipments. Perhaps such an idea should wait until we develop some of capabilities on our own. Also in the current day, railway fair of AC classes touches the lower rung fares of airlines. It is highly debatable that with increased investment how railways would be able to recover its costs and complete with airlines. Decision to adopt the HSR should be based on cost benefit analysis rather than just the quest to adopt a new technology.

    • It is a good move that the new parties have already started thinking about their election manifestos and started the work in this area “The Diamond quadrilateral ” (TDQ) as it is called connecting all the major metropolitan with high speed rail networks, is currently in operation in Japan, china.
      There are many debates going around the corner about the feasibility of its introduction and the financial constraints pertaining to the railways and sovereign funds. It is true to an extent that TDQ would put a lot of financial crunch on the already cash starved railways and the public exchequer. But there are also many advantages to these projects right from improving the India’s infrastructure and showcasing the world about our preparedness to adopt new technologies to saving time of industrialists and investors.the speculations were also raised during the introduction of Metro in Delhi but it is a big success but TDQ is a different ball game altogether.
      The real questions stands here is are we really ready for these new transport? as a railways employee pointed out that it will be a long journey to reach the 320 km/hr mark from the present 60km/hr maximum speed of railways. With our rail network, which is in dire need of improvements in passenger safety, Food, Infrastructure, Manpower investing in a new technology and a financial bomb is a question really need to be answered.
      We can instead increase the avg speed from 60 to 120 km/hr and provide other facilities and ensure safe journey in the same amount. Still we can turn to other mode of transports for the business class like Air journey by liberalizing and ensuring competition for low fares, would the business class mind?

    • chetanrkmeena

      Diamond Quadrilateral Railway Project एक मह्त्वकाशी परियोजना है जिसके अंतर्गत चारों मेट्रो शहरों को तीव्र गति एवं अधिक क्षमता वाले रेलवे लाइन से जोड़ा जायेगा ताकि चारों महानगरों के बीच संसाधनों की गतिशीलता बढ़ा कर आर्थिक गतिविधियों को तीव्र किया जा सके.
      इस प्रोजेक्ट में लगभग 12 लाख करोड़ रूपये खर्च होंगे. इस पर कार्य विगत UPA सरकार प्रारम्भ कर चुकी थी जिसमे जापान की सहायता से मॉडल तौर पर मुंबई तथा अहमदाबाद के बीच निर्माण कार्य शुरू हो चूका है तथा यह 2015 तक पूरा होने की सम्भावना है.
      नयी सरकार ने इसके पुराने स्वरुप एवं नए लक्ष्यों के बीच समन्वय करते हुए नए स्तर से विचार विमर्श प्राम्भ किया है जिसमे इसका स्वरुप NHDP जैसा होने की सम्भावना है.इसके तहत लगभग 7000 किमी ट्रैक बनने का लक्ष्य है.
      निसंदेह अवसरंचना निर्माण देश का प्रमुख लक्ष्य है और चीन की भांति तीव्र परिवहन प्रणाली भारत की संवृधि दर को बढाने में सहायक होगी.
      आवश्यकता है कि इतने बढे निवेश की तुलना में मिलने वाले लाभ एवं अन्य प्राथमिकताओं पर भी विचार किया जाये. जैसे उर्जा सुरक्षा भारत के लिए सदैव चिंता का विषय रहा है तथा भविष्य में इसमे भरी निवेश की अव्ह्स्यकता है.पुन राजकोषीय विस्तार एवं महंगाई जैसी आर्थिक चुनोतियों पर भी चिंतन किया जावे.
      समग्रता में भारत जैसे संसाधन विपन्न अर्थव्यवस्था में संसांधनों का इसप्रकार प्रयोग प्रशसनीय है जो तेजी से एवं समावेशी विकास में सहायक हो.

  • Write a note on the McLanahan Nutrient Separation System and its applications.

    A new technology that extracts water from manure will be sold commercially. Developed at Michigan State University, it was designed to be used in dry areas with animal operations. This produces water clean enough for cattle to drink.
    Application:
    1.Managed well, the system has value in resource conservation and environmental protection. Manure, 90 percent water, contains large amounts of nutrients, carbon and pathogens that can be harmful if not properly managed.
    2 : Add-on to an anaerobic digester, which extracts energy and chemicals from manure.
    3:The system adds ultrafiltration, air stripping and a reverse osmosis system to produce water that’s clean enough for cattle to drink

  • AKN

    Q6.Do you agree with the proposal that privatisation of public sector banks is need of the hour to reform banking sector in India? Critically comment.

    • Rajvik

      Entrusted with the task of enhancing the penetration of banking services within interiors of the Nation, the public sector banks are shouldering responsibility of disbursing pensions to priority sector lending. Despite high unsustainable non performing assets and poor service model, the public sector banks are catering to the non target population left untouched by the radar of Private sector banks.
      With the proposal of privatisation of public sector banks making teh rounds (as suggested by PJ Nayak Committee), it is noteworthy that selling government stake without turning them around may amount to a gross scam. While innovations such as external independent directors on board public sector banks is a welcome change ensuring good governance, but this model is yet to prove its worth, owing to failure of many private banks outside India.
      Hence need of the hour is to restructure the lendings and improve the quality of assets and at the same time inculcate good corporate governance in the public sector banks. This may include minimizing ministerial interference in the day to day banking decisions. Only then can we assure a sustainable & inclusive healthy banking.

    • rss998

      Indian banking system, dominated by Public Sector Bank, is undergoing one of the rough patches due to increase in non performing assets. At a time when NPAs of publics sector is rising at a higher rate with respect to their private sector counterparts, privatisation of Public sector banks is being presented as a panacea to reform the banking sector.
      We need to understand that private sector banks are doing better not just by virtue of being privately owned. Their goals and operational settings are a lot different vis a vis the public sector. They are performing well because they are more focussed on retail segment, working capital and wealth management, While public sector bank are focussed on the development role. Over a long period of time there is convergence in their performances.
      It can be said Public sector banks are doing badly because their boards are dysfunctional. Directions from finance ministry are implemented without putting in much thought or risk assessment. Obviously, there is need to free public sector bank’s board, from the clutches of day to day control of government. At the same time, we need to understand that during financial crisis biggest banks in USA and UK failed not due to lack of professionals in their boards but due to lack of questioning by the directors of the company. Meaningful participation of independent directors as per new norms of SEBI is a step in right direction.
      Further, government ownership of banks was one of the reasons for stability of Indian banking system at the time of financial crisis of 2007. Past experience also shows that it is possible to induce competition and enhance efficiency in public sector banks without jeopardising stability of Indian banking system.

      pls review

  • AKN

    Indian Public Sector Banks(PSB) have burgeoning NPA leading to
    accusations of mismanagement and privatization has been cited as a
    panacea by Nayak Committee appointed by the RBI. This is a knee-jerk
    response.

    PSBs serve the larger social purpose of banking in India. For example,
    priority sector lending is not always done with a motive to maximize
    profits.So the purpose of PSBs is not profit alone.

    PSBs are the first bulwarks against macroeconomic shocks. They are the
    main instruments used by the Govt to pump-in or suck-up liquidity and
    focused intervention in specific areas(like exports) in times of
    crises.

    Due to these two reasons PSBs should not be privatized. Due to the
    same two reasons they cannot be called failures by comparing them with
    private banks, which work with the sole purpose of profit-maximization.

    Also, world over banks are being rapidly nationalized to prevent them
    from collapsing. Such socialization of private credit is unacceptable.

    Indian PSBs have considerably improved after the banking reforms of
    1994-95. The logical thing would be to carry them forward by
    professionalizing director boards and Govt distancing itself from
    business management while retaining controlling shares and deciding
    policy matters.

    • Praneeth Reddy

      Public Sector Banks (PSBs) are going through a tough phase. The ratio of non-performing assets is very high. Such a high NPA ratio threatens the overall health and stability of our financial sector because of their share in the banking sector, which is more than 70%. The health of the private sector banks is better reflected by the lower NPA ratio. The relatively better performance of the private banks has prompted calls for privatization in academic and banking circles.

      Independence in decision making in the process of grating loans and other credit issues enables better risk management and credit management in private banks. On the other hand, PSBs work within a lot of constraints. There exists a lot of government influence on the board decisions. In addition, they have to provide credit to big-ticket projects unlike private banks which are a lot more choosy. It is this burden that forced them to provide credit to many projects that have been marred by slow project clearances, owing to policy paralysis, and thus become NPAs.

      However, it is the same PSBs whose credit to the infrastructure projects helped the economy grow at an average rate of 9% in the 2004-08 period. PSBs are also very effective in providing credit to sections that are non-attractive to the private banks. Such sections would be left out which cannot be afforded at this stage when we are aiming for a higher financial inclusion. There are no substitutes to their development role.

      Thus, the need of the hour is improvement in the quality of management in PSBs by giving a free hand to the management. In addition there is a need for a greater number of banks to enhance financial inclusion in the country. This can be achieved by both PSBs and private banks which operate under a set of developmental-guidelines set by the RBI.

      • Praneeth Reddy

        Friends, please review my answer.

        • vins

          Great answer with a logical flow

      • VKN

        good one…

  • AKN

    Q4 Comment why many bird species in India are becoming extinct in recent years.

    Avian extinction has gathered pace alarmingly in recent years in India. Man is to blame for this acceleration of extinction.

    Global warming and climate change has affected reproductive and migratory patterns of many birds. This has been a major cause for the failure of even very dedicated conservation efforts.

    Many birds are not adaptable to habitat changes. Habitat destruction therefore often spells species extinction. This is more so for birds in mangroves and wetlands.

    India receives many migratory birds in winter. They flock towards wet-lands. Destruction of wet-lands is affecting such populations

    Poaching has been a perennial problem in India. The Great Indian Bustard is now in the Red-list mostly due to this menace. If unchecked it can spell doom especially for game-birds and pheasants.

    Then there are other anthropogenic factors like diclofenac. Used as a veterinary analgesic, it has led to massive number of deaths in vulture population and other birds that feed on animal carcasses.

    Thus it may be seen that man is the cause of this ecological loss. Therefore it is a solemn duty of men to take concrete steps to mitigate this menace

    • priya

      just some points

      Air Pollution – it has led to decline n many species such as sparrows
      Deforestation and Concretization – it is taking away their nests
      Fertilizers – their excessive use has led to extinction of many varieties of insects on which birds prey
      Poaching and hunting – for commercial and medicinal purposes. Great Indian bustard is in IUCN red list mainly because of this.
      Diclofenac – used for cattle, causes kidney failure which feed on cattle carcasses
      Global warming – it has changed the migratory pattern of birds leading to their high susceptibility to extreme climate in their home area
      Destruction of wetlands, mangroves – due to construction activities, reclamation of wetlands, eutrophication, these are not able to host the birds

      All the causes are anthropogenic in nature. To reverse the trend some active measures need to be undertaken:
      Awareness campaigns – like the one started in Delhi
      Promote bird watching – so that more and more enthusiasts come forward for bird conservation
      Speedy punishment – to those engaged in poaching and hunting

      plz add to them 🙂

      • AKN

        air pollution, pesticides…. great points

      • puddi

        v must stop this blame game.rather we join hands and work toward it

    • bhagat singh

      Good answer akn

  • priya

    Critically examine the changing role of military in Pakistan’s domestic and foreign affairs in recent years.

    • priya

      Until around sometime in 2007, military in Pakistan was the strongest institution. For six decades after Independence, Pakistan’s military, specifically its Army, has reigned supreme over the political economy of Pakistan.
      However, since 2007, military’s hegemony has been challenged by the Judiciary, Parliament and to some degree, until recently, the media.

      Signs of breaking of military hegemony
      • symbolic indictment of General Pervez Musharraf himself.
      • The military in Pakistan is also responsible for its fall from grace, after having had to explain the presence of Osama bin Laden in Pakistan, America’s night raid to kill him and numerous insider attempts to attack Pakistan’s military personnel.
      • There is also a sense that the narrative in Pakistan may have shifted towards democracy, away from military rule — at least for the moment.

      Despite Pakistan military’s denuded power, it still remains an influence in public policy and has the ability to conduct another coup. While military-led governments in Pakistan have, ironically, benefitted India-Pakistan relations, they have been disastrous for Pakistan

      One needs to be reminded that such transitions, where civilian institutions begin to dominate and when the military recedes, can take years. In countries where the military has ruled for so long it takes around a decade in losing its supreme power. In the case of Indonesia, for example, it took almost a decade before the military lost even its power to veto key civilian decisions.
      Conclusion
      Pakistan’s civil and political dispensation need to speed up democratic transition by being more assertive, efficient in delivering services and justice, and be a little less afraid.

      plz review 🙂

      • AKN

        good one. didnt like the structuring, though

  • adwivedi814

    Poverty eradication gained importance since the 6th FYP and schemes and programs were undertaken to alleviate the poverty and improve the standard of living of citizens. Jawahar rozgar Yojana was started in 7th FYP for catering to the employment needs.

    The policy to eradicate poverty has been two fold. The government has aimed at providing subsidies for ensuring adequate safety net to the poor . The schemes such as AAY providing subsidized food and provision for MSP which was meant to provide insurance to the farmers, thereby reducing their vulnerability were undertaken.

    Since the subsidies are a short term measure, the government has undertaken schemes for capacity building and skill development of the poor. This would lead to increased opportunities of employment for them. SGSY scheme was meant at empowering the swarozgaris to set up SHG by providing training, capacity building , credit support and government subsidy. The self employment through SHG is aimed at reducing poverty in a sustainable manner.

    The schemes such as MNREGA has provided increased employment opportunities for the rural poor. Through the skill development initiatives and vocational training the government has acted as a facilitator for the poverty alleviation.

    21.9 percent of the population still is BPL as per latest data. Though the government initiatives have been successful in the reducing the poverty, more effective implementation of schemes such as MNREGA would further aid the cause.

  • OCD

    Q: Critically comment on Nehru’s contribution to strengthening democracy in post-Independent India.

    A: The history of post-colonial Africa and Asia is one of coups,civil wars,multiple variations on apartheid and innumerable dictatorships.But India remained an exceptional beacon mainly due to the efforts of the towering Jawaharlal Nehru.The Nehruvian Era continued even after his death and despite his failures in administration which was why he was justifiably called as an ‘Architect of India’.
    Nehru established fully the tradition of supremacy of the civil government over the armed forces and thus prevented military interventions in politics as happened in the neighboring countries.He succeeded in checking the disruptive forces,promoted the psychological integration of the Indians and consolidated the nation which was no mean task.Carrying on the traditions of the national movement,he carefully nurtured and entrenched democracy and parliamentary government in India.
    However,he failed to build institutions or organizational structures to implement his visions or to mobilize people to see his visions which led to a general weakness in the execution of his policies and ideas.Although Nehru was opposed to communalism,he ignored the need for struggle against it as an ideology.It was due to his democratic approach that further complicated the solutions like the Accessions of Hyderabad and Kashmir into Indian Union.
    As a First PM of independent India,Nehru was faced with daunting tasks.Despite his failures,he rooted certain values,approaches,objectives,goals and made them an integral part of the Indian people,which was truly implied in the words of Geoffrey Tyson-‘If Nehru had been a different kind of man,India would have become a different kind of country’.

    FIRST ATTEMPT!!Following the insights from one month regularly.. but was afraid to write.so finally took the step to learn things 🙂 PLEASE REVIEW 🙂

    • bhagat singh

      @OCD…. Good answer . liked the flow..keep it up

  • AKN

    Q8 Write a note on the involvement of private sector in recent years in space exploration.

    While space continues to remain global commons in theory, it has been highly commercialized in practice. It is a practice that was, is and will be.

    Since the first commercial satellite in 1962, the space has had massive investment. It is now a vertically integrated business spanning from ground equipment manufacturing through transponder leasing to space transportation.

    Now the Us space shuttles having been grounded, companies are vying each other to manufacture the next vehicle that can take astronauts. For example, SpaceX has come up with a futuristic space module.

    Space tourism is coming up in a big way. Virgin Galactic and Space Adventures have already send tourists to space.

    People are already investing in futuristic plans like mars colonization and asteroid mining. The future of the industry looks promising.

    The status of space as a global commons is the major impediment to commercialization of space. But if that is an impediment that should be removed or reinforced is a matter of much controversy

  • esprit aficionado

    I am not able to see any comments ie ans posted here.
    What should b done?

  • sikandar

    hello Insight….
    No on posted any answer today ??

    or there is some privacy policy that we are not able to see any comment ?

  • Rahul Mishra

    no post….???

  • rashmi

    “When it comes to economic matters, the government is an enabler and
    facilitator. Its primary job is to develop and maintain a system in
    which people – the rich and the poor – can take steps by themselves to
    better their lives. ” In the light of the statement, critically examine
    the nature of poverty removal programmes in India.

    11:53
    It is often argued that the role of the government should be of a facilitator in the economic matters and the growth and development should be left in the hands of the market forces . This approach has met with success in the most of the western countries and also south east asian nation .

    India moved from a closed economy to an open one after the reforms of 1992 . This unleashed the market forces and narrowed the overarching presence of the government . But the govt is still engaged in large scale anti poverty measures like MGNRES , priority sector lending , PDS etc. These measures are often criticized for their inefficiency and alternation of the market dynamics. There is some merit in the above argument as data shows world’s largest food distribution programme accounts for the leakage as high as 60% , govt’s control on PSB has effected their profitability and efficiency and the work under MGNREGs is of sub optimal quality etc . In fact the clause of inefficiency can be easily associated with all such schemes .

    The ‘trickle down’ approach of poverty alleviation based on the market forces can’t be fully trusted in a country , marked by such inequalities , like India . There are certain sections of the population like tribals etc who will never able to come out of their debilitating conditions without a direct action by the government . Having said that it is also un disputed that a employment opportunity generated by a thriving manufacturing sector will always be a better option than the schemes like MGNRES.

    But certain sectors like education , health ,nutrition are too important to be left at the mercy of profit seeking market . In these sectors the government should play a direct role . Thus a better poverty elevation programme will be to make the citizens able , via nutrition and education , to utilize the opportunity provided by the market . And involve in a direct action when the section (old, tribals etc)is not able to do the same .

  • urlovin

    poverty alleviation has been top priority of govt since independence.It started through community devlpmnt plans and then systematically through five year plans.The trickle down effect policy failed miserable to tackle poverty.

    This made govt to bring incentive based schemes for BPL through PDS and FPS systems.Although it helped in providing foodgrains almost free of cost but it didn’t reduced poverty.Leakages,corruption,poor targeting,hampered these schemes.

    Then govt moved to schemes of employment generation in rural areas like MNREGA,NRLM,PMGSY etc.These employemnt schemes focussed on wage employment and self employment.Although with some successes, these schemes too didnt brought down poverty permanently.

    Employment procedure requires 2 imp things-employable skills and labour market.Govt needs to invest in these two to bring labour to the productive sectors that increases his income.Through skill devlpmnt courses,gud health care,vocational trainings,entrepreneurship,credit/financing and through creating environment for pvt sectors tht can create jobs like power,roads etc, the govt can fulfil these 2 requirements.

    Notwithstanding these, there will be some section of society like old,widows,tribal,differently-abled that require direct govt interventions through DBT,pensions,Money transfers like schemes. Such balanced blending of policies can be very effective towards poverty eradication.

  • The shy poet

    I wrote answer early today. Unable to see it.

    • sikandar

      seems Insight is going to charge a fee 😛

      • Nope 🙂 Don’t worry about it. Keep answering at Secure.

  • Aditya

    With the development of cities and new frontiers in technology, we also notice changes in our ecosystem. With expanding cities and rapid deforestation, we find rapid reduction in the number of sparrows, and an almost 99% reduction in the number of vultures in the last decade. According to a recent research, the effect has been primarily due to increasing use of diclofenac as an anti inflammatory drug for cattle. The residue of the drug in the bodies of these cattle lead to kidney failure of vultures, which feed on the carcasses of these animals.In recent years, similar phenomenon is being noticed in the deaths of eagles which also have similar eating habits as that of vultures. A lot of efforts are now being taken to revitalize the population of vultures in India. There is a need to ban the use of diclofenac, which can be achieved only by awareness of farmers. The extinction of a species usually have various ripple effects higher up in the food chain and can have effect on our habits also.

  • indian@87

    Hi..
    Any one,
    Pl. suggest a good book for CSAT Paper-II..

    • R1

      go for arihant to start with. not very quality book but covers all topic well and enough for CSAT.
      you may supplement your skills with career launcher booklets.

  • Chandra

    3. In your opinion, what are the big problems that agriculture in India is facing at
    present. Do you think myriad schemes and programmes are able to effectively
    address these problems? Critically evaluate.

    There are mainly two major problem for Indian agriculture :-

    (i) Land irrigation facility not available.
    (ii) Financial burden for small and marginal farmer.

    The government of India presently introduce schemes for this two reason.

    – To give an impetus to the dying agricultural practice in the country.there is 14 crore hectares of agricultural land in India, of which only 44 per cent in under irrigation.

    – Pradhan Mantri Gram Sinchai Yojana would be introduced so that more agricultural land is irrigated.

    – The plight of small and marginal farmers he said that most of them were leaving the agricultural practice because of the uncertainty over the produce and returns.To introduce Krishi Amdani Beema Yojana so that the farmers don’t bear any financial burden if their produce gets destroyed due to unexpected weather or for any other reason.