Expected Questions/Topics for UPSC IAS Prelims 2020: Kurukshetra Part 2 Policy and Planning Towards Rural Education

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Interventions to promote education in rural areas: Jawahar Navodaya Vidyalayas. Samagra Shiksha. Kasturba Gandhi Balika Vidyalya (KGBV) scheme. Eklavya Model Residential Schools (EMRS) .

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Digital Initiatives by GOI

  • Operation Digital Board.
  • National Initiative for School Heads and Teachers Holistic Advancement (NISHTHA) .
  • MOOCs (Massive Open Online Courses) on SWAYAM Platform.
  • SWAYAM PRABHA (Kishore Manch) DTH-TV.
  • National Digital Library of India (NDL) .

Strategies to Promote equitable education

  • Transformation of Aspirational Districts Program.
  • Sustainable Action for Transforming Human Capital (SATH) Program.
  • School Education Quality Index-SEQI.
  • New Education Policy.

Impact of the Right to Education

Main features of the RTE Act

  • The Act makes education a fundamental right of every child between the ages of 6 and 14 years.
  • All private schools are mandated to reserve 25 % of seats, absolutely free of cost for children belonging to disadvantaged categories.
  • All unrecognized schools have been prohibited from practice.
  • Requires surveys that will take stock of the education situation in all neighborhoods.
  • Section 29 of the Act provides for curriculum and evaluation procedure in elementary schools.

Fulfilling the objectives of RTE Act

  • Qualitative improvement in education.
  • To account for transparency in decision-making within the State.
  • Partnership of the Central and State Governments should partner with international agencies for providing technical education.
  • International development partners like the World Bank, DFID, ADB could contribute by designing tailor-made technical assistance and capacity building programmes.
  • Focus on improving quality by developing bespoke solutions.
  • “Education for All” should not imply “One Programme for All” .

Role of SHGs in improving rural education

  • Ensuring local participation and monitoring school management.
  • SHGs can offer local solutions to rural schools.
  • Management of mid-day meal in rural schools.
  • Management and governance of rural schools on pilot basis.

Towards Digital and Financial Literacy

Importance of Financial Literacy

  • Inclusive Growth and Financial Inclusion.
  • Familiarity and Ability.
  • Freedom from exploitation.
  • Prevention of over indebtedness.
  • Promotion of entrepreneurship.
  • Positive Spillover effects.
  • Making the Pension Responsibility an individual or personal affair and not that of the State/Corporations.
  • Behavioral Change.
  • More and better input in Financial Markets.

Project Financial Literacy

  • Undertaken by the Reserve Bank of India.
  • Objective is to disseminate information regarding the central bank and general banking concepts to various target groups.
  • Project designing in two modules- focusing on the economy, RBI and its activities and the other module on general banking.
  • Creation of material-English and other Vernacular languages
  • Dissemination to the target audience with the help of banks, local government machinery, schools, and colleges.
  • Use of presentations, pamphlets, brochures, films and RBI՚s website.

Government Endeavors to Promote Digital Literacy in India

  • Digital Saksharta Abhiyan (DISHA) .
  • Scheme aims at making target groups like the Angawadis, ASHA workers, sanctioned ration dealers etc.
  • Digitize India Platform (DIP) .
  • Direct Benefit Transfer (DBT) .
  • AADHAR and AADHAAR Enabled Payment System.
  • Saugamya Bharat Abhiyan.
  • Bharat Interface for Money (BHIM) .
  • Bank to bank transfer through a mobile phone.
  • Cyber Swachhta Kendra.
  • Vittiya Saksharta Abhiyan (VISAKA) .

Infrastructure Development in School Education

Infrastructure facilities to promote school education and their status.

  • Increase in number of schools.
  • Kasturba Gandhi Balika Vidyalaya (KGBV) .
  • Girls՚ hostel for students of secondary and higher secondary schools.
  • School Building and classrooms.
  • Drinking Water.
  • Separate Toilet for Boys and Girls.
  • Ramp and CWSN Toilet.
  • Library.
  • Information and Communication Technology (ICT) .
  • Computer Aided Learning (CAL) .
  • Electricity.
  • Computers and smart classrooms in rural areas.
  • Playground.
  • Boundary Wall.
  • Science Laboratory for Secondary and Higher Secondary schools.

Availability of Teachers for Better Education

Issues regarding Teachers

  • Lack of initiatives and mechanisms in the recruitment process.
  • Lack of Quality teacher education.
  • Shortage of 10 lakh teacher vacancies (Pupil Teacher Ratios is larger than 60: 1 in certain areas) .
  • Lack of sufficient infrastructure, resources and supplies.
  • Issues like salary, promotion, transfers, etc.
  • Dire need to revisit and overhaul service conditions and career management.

Suggestions to improve the Teacher Efficacy

  • Stability of tenure of teachers must be ensured.
  • Incentives can be provided for teachers to take up teaching jobs in rural areas.
  • A classroom demonstration or interview should be an integral part of teacher hiring at schools.
  • A comprehensive teacher requirement planning exercise.
  • Adequate and safe infrastructure.
  • Working toilets.
  • Clean drinking water.
  • Clean and attractive spaces.
  • Electricity, computers and internet.
  • Giving more autonomy to teachers in choosing finer aspects of curriculum and pedagogy.
  • Opportunities for self-improvement and to learn latest innovations.

Agriculture Reforms: Towards Doubling Farmers՚ Income

Schemes and Policies to promote income of farmers (GOI)

  • Higher Production through Productivity Gains.
  • National Food Security Mission (NFSM) .
  • Mission for Integrated Development of Horticulture (MIDH) .
  • National Mission on Oilseeds and Oil Palm (NMOOP) .
  • Soil Health Card (SHC) .
  • Neem Coated Urea (NCU) .
  • Pradhan Mantri Krishi Sinchayee Yojana (PMKSY) .
  • Pradhan Mantri Kisan Samman Nidhi (PM KISAN) scheme.
  • Pradhan Mantri Kisan Maan Dhan Yojna (PM-KMY) .
  • National Agriculture Market Scheme (e-NAM) .
  • Farmer Producer Organizations (FPOs) .
  • Gramin Agricultural Markets (GrAMs) .
  • Minimum Support Price (MSP) .
  • Price Support Scheme (PSS) .
  • National Livestock Mission.
  • National Dairy Plan-1 (NDP-1) , National Dairy Development Program (NPDD) and Dairy Entrepreneurship Development Scheme.

Model Agricultural Produce and Livestock Marketing Promotion and Facilitation Act, 2017

  • Released on the 24th of April, 2017 for its adoption by States/UTs.
  • To promote alternative competitive marketing channels for better pricing for farmers.
  • To encourage private investment in developing efficient marketing infrastructure and value chain.

Empowering Women Farmers

  • Support for Women Food Security Groups (FSGs) .
  • Procurement of Agricultural Machinery and Equipments (Subsidy Pattern) .
  • Representation of Women Farmers.
  • Promoting Women Groups.
  • Integrated Scheme for Agricultural Marketing (ISAM) .
  • Agricultural Insurance.

Other interventions by GOI

  • The Agriculture and Farmers Welfare Ministry established Indian Council of Agricultural Research, ICAR.
  • Mobilising the Self-help Groups with a view to increase the income generation of female participants.
  • Development of softwares and interfaces to facilitate mass media communication.
  • Gender Knowledge Portal- All the relevant data and information related to women farmers has also been created.
  • All India Coordinated Research Project (AICRP) by ICAR to fortify agricultural research and enhance agricultural productivity.
  • Krishi Vigyan Kendras (KVKs) .
  • National Food Security Mission (NFSM) -Training farmers (including the SC, ST) and women to generate awareness on augmented technology for increasing crop production and yield.

E-NAM: Game Changer in Agricultural Marketing

  • E-NAM or Electronic National Agriculture Market is a pan India trading portal.
  • E-NAM Portal was launched in April 2016.
  • It is a device to create a national network of mandis that can be accessed online.
  • Enables buyers to participate in trading including those who are staying outside the state.
  • Main aim- To improve the marketing aspect of the agriculture sector with one license.
  • Improves the supply chain of commodities and reduces wastages.
  • Plugging the trade malpractices in mandis.

Other Benefits

  • No middlemen involved in buying selling of agri products.
  • Transaction cost is less.
  • Validity of a single license across all connected mandis.
  • Single point levy of all products.
  • Quality testing procedure for buyers and sellers.

Per Drop More Crop (Irrigation Techniques)

Pradhan Mantri Krishi Sinchayee Yojana (PMKSY)

  • Motto of providing Har Khet Ko Pani.
  • Aim- providing end- to end solutions in irrigation supply chain viz. , water resources, distribution network, farm level applications and improved water use efficiency.
  • To achieve convergence of investments in irrigation sector at field level.
  • Allocation of a Micro irrigation Fund (MIF) with an initial corpus of ₹ 5000 crores in the Union Budget 2017 - 18.
  • Area covered under Micro irrigation by the year 2018 - 19 - 11.58 Lakh Ha.

Impact of Micro Irrigation

  • Offers enhancement of crop productivity due to judicious use of water and other inputs.
  • Increase in irrigated area 8.41 % from the same source of water.
  • Increased Crop Productivity in terms of fruits and vegetables.
  • Reduction in irrigation cost by 20 % to 50 % .
  • Reduction in energy consumption by about 31 % .
  • Reduction in the use of chemical fertilizers.
  • Increment in the overall farmers income.
  • Greater Benefit-cost ratio than the states.
  • Ensures additional benefits like non-exploitation of groundwater, reduction in the cost of weeding and relief from water scarcity.
  • Reduce conveyance losses, evaporation, runoff, deep percolation losses.

New initiatives in the agricultural sector

  • Amending the agriculture marketing regime.
  • Encouraging contract farming through the State Governments.
  • 22,000 Gramin Haats are to be upgraded to work as centers of aggregation.
  • Paramparagat Krishi Vikas Yojana (PKVY) .
  • Pradhan Mantri Fasal Bima Yojana (PMFBY) .
  • “Har Medh Par Ped” , agro forestry.
  • Launch of PM-Asha scheme.
  • Rashtriya Gokul Mission.
  • National Livestock Mission.
  • Mission for Integrated Development of Horticulture (MIDH) -Bee Keeping Promotion.
  • Blue Revolution-High potential in fisheries sector.
  • The National Mission for Sustainable Agriculture (NMSA) .

Financial Inclusion-Major Initiatives

Need for Financial Inclusion

  • Access to microcredit.
  • Generation of additional income streams.
  • Help while funding children՚s education.
  • Creating assets by linking savings into investments.

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