March 23, 2023


General Studies Paper 2 Context: Recently, data shared by the government shows increased participation of women on the payrolls of public sector banks. About According to data shared by the Minister of State for Finance, in the Lok Sabha The proportion of women employees has increased over the past year in most public sector banks. In three public sector banks women employees constitute 30% or more of the total work force. Indian Overseas Bank had the highest share of female staffers in their total staff strength at 36% Cabinet committee on Empowerment of Women in its fourth report (16 th lok sabha) considered the working....Read More

General Studies Paper 2 Context: The recently launched Vibrant Village Programme is hailed as a right step towards securing Himalayan borders. About the Vibrant Village Programme (VVP) About: The Vibrant Village Programme is a Centrally Sponsored Scheme recently approved by the Cabinet for the Financial Years 2022-23 to 2025-26. The scheme will provide funds for the development of essential infrastructure and the creation of livelihood opportunities in 19 Districts and 46 Border blocks 4 states and 1 UT along the northern land border of the country which will help in achieving inclusive growth and retaining the population in the border areas. In the first phase....Read More

General Studies Paper 2 General Studies Paper 2Context: Recently, the Ministry of Tribal Affairs responded to a question in the Rajya Sabha, which raised concerns about the need for a revision in the criteria and procedure for inclusion in the Scheduled Tribes list. The current procedure and criteria for inclusion According to the modalities, for inclusion first framed in 1999, the proposal for inclusion must originate from the respective State or Union Territory government. Following this, the proposal is sent to the Union Tribal Affairs Ministry, which sends it to the Office of the Registrar General of India (ORGI). If the ORGI approves....Read More

General Studies Paper 2 Context: As the June 2023 deadline for completing the Smart Cities Mission approaches, the government has asked 20 of the worst-performing cities to buck up. These 20 cities are the ones that have completed the fewest projects under the mission. Smart Cities Mission (SCM) About: The Smart Cities Mission is an initiative of the Union Housing and Urban Affairs Ministry that was launched by the Prime Minister on June 25th 2015. Cities across the country were asked to submit proposals for projects to improve municipal services and to make their jurisdictions more liveable. Between January 2016 and June 2018, the Ministry selected 100 cities for....Read More

General Studies Paper 2 Context: The challenges that civil society organisations (CSO) in India face are new and enduring. About the Civil Society Organizations in India About: India has a long history of civil society based on the concepts of daana(giving) and seva (service). Civil society organization (CSO)or non-governmental organization (NGO) are the organizations that are voluntary in spirit and without profit-making objectives—have been active in cultural promotion, education, health, and natural disaster relief. Data on NGOs: Today, about 5 million NGOs work in India(i.e., nonprofit, voluntary citizens’ groups organized on a local, national, or international level). According to a survey conducted by Society for Participatory Research....Read More

General Studies Paper 2 Context: According to the Annual Status of Education Report 2022   report, government schools saw a sharp rise in enrolment for the first time in 16 years; basic literacy levels of children have taken a big hit, with their reading ability as compared to numeracy skills worsening much more sharply and dropping to pre-2012 levels. Government schools in many states are predominantly attended by children from vulnerable social groups,where girls' education is often treated as a formality for marriage prospects. In addition to funding issues, there is a need to improve governance in schools and renovate dilapidated facilities due....Read More

Rise in drug abuse

General Studies Paper 2 Context: Recent surveys by the state Ministry for Excise highlights the rise in the drug overtake cases in Kerala. Kerala has seen a 300% increase in drug cases over the past six years, with arrests up 90%. The number of cases registered under the Narcotic Drugs and Psychotropic Substances (NDPS) Actin 2022 was 26,629, a significant increase from 5,924 cases in 2016 and 9,245 cases in 2019. Nearly 97% of the respondents admitted to using some form of drug with Cannabis (ganja) being the most consumed drug (82%), followed by tobacco (75.6%). Recreational drugs like MDMA and methamphetamine have found a market in Kerala, with....Read More

General Studies Paper 2 Context: The Economic Survey 2022-23 showed that 6.49 crore households demanded work under the Mahatma Gandhi National Rural Employment Guarantee Scheme (MGNREGS). Of these, 6.48 crore households were offered employment by the government and 5.7 crore actually availed it. The Scheme was hailed for its role in mitigating the impact of the COVID-19 pandemic, when the number of workers had jumped post reverse migration from urban areas during the pandemic. In the Union Budget 2023-24, the Government has allocated INR 60,000 crore for the MGNREGS and has cut the funds by 33% compared to INR 89,000 crore in FY2022-23....Read More

Urban farming in India

General Studies Paper 2 Context: Recently, the “Draft Citizen’s Policy for Urban Agriculture in Delhi” was submitted to the Delhi government by Delhi-based research non-profit People’s Resource Centre. More about the Policy Aim: The policy aims to provide a holistic framework for urban farming. Urban Agriculture in Delhi: Some 60 percent of Delhi’s demand for meat is fulfilled by city-grown produce, as is 25 percent of its milk and 15 percent of its vegetable needs. Yet policies on land use and farming in the National Capital do not acknowledge the role of cultivation and distribution of food in urban areas, says the draft policy. Recommendations: It recommends building on existing....Read More

General Studies Paper 2 Context:  The government will soon kick off the process to set up the 16th Finance Commission, with the Finance Ministry likely to notify the terms of reference (ToR) of the constitutional body. Background: The 15th Finance Commission(FFC chaired by NK Singh) was set up in (November 2017) with a mandate to make recommendations for the five-year period from 2020-21. The Commission is usually granted about two years to deliberate on its terms of reference, consult States and frame its recommendations. The government should ideally have its report by October 2025to consider it in time for Budget 2026-27, where it will have to....Read More

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