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Prelim Bits 15-07-2022 | UPSC Daily Current Affairs

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July 15, 2022

Platform of Platforms - eNAM

The Ministry of Agriculture and Farmers Welfare launched the Platform of Platforms (POP) under the National Agriculture Market (e-NAM).

  • e-NAM integrates the platform of Service Providers as ‘Platform of Platforms’ (POP) which includes
    1. Composite Service Providers (Service Providers who provide holistic services for trading of agricultural produce including quality analysis, trading, payment systems and logistics),
    2. Logistics Service Provider,
    3. Quality Assurance Service Provider,
    4. Cleaning, Grading, Sorting & Packaging Service Provider,
    5. Warehousing Facility Service Provider,
    6. Agricultural Input Service Provider,
    7. Technology Enabled Finance & Insurance Service Provider,
    8. Information Dissemination Portal (crop forecasting, advisory Services, weather updates, capacity building for farmers etc.) and
    9. Other platforms (e-commerce, international agri-business platforms, barter, private market platforms etc.,)
  • With the introduction of POP, farmers will be facilitated to sell the produce outside their state borders.
  • This will increase farmers’ digital access to multiple markets, buyers and service providers and bring transparency in business transactions.
  • This will improve the price search mechanism and quality commensurate price realisation.
  • e-NAM platform enables farmers, FPOs, traders and other stakeholders to access a wide variety of goods and services from different service providers across the agricultural value chain through a single window.
  • PoP will create a digital ecosystem that will benefit from the expertise of different platforms in different segments of the agricultural value chain.

Equity Grant

Equity grant of over Rs 37 crore was released to 1,018 Farmer Producer Organizations (FPOs) under eNAM that will benefit about 3.5 lakh farmers leading to the goal of setting up of 10 thousand FPOs.

  • The Equity Grant Scheme (EGS) extends support to the equity base of Farmer Producer Companies (FPCs) by providing matching equity grants.
  • The EGS has been set up with the primary objectives of
    1. Enhancing viability and sustainability, credit worthiness of Farmer Producer Companies (FPCs),
    2. Enhancing the shareholding of members to increase their ownership and participation in their FPCs.
  • It shall be operated by Small Farmers' Agri Business Consortium (SFAC).
  • It enables eligible FPCs to receive a grant equivalent in amount to the equity contribution of their shareholder members in the FPC subject to a maximum of Rs.15 lakh per FPC in two tranche within 3 years.
  • It shall address nascent and emerging FPCs, which have paid up capital not exceeding Rs. 30 lakh.

e-NAM

  • National Agriculture Market (eNAM) is a pan-India electronic trading portal launched in 2016.
  • It is a central sector scheme, which is completely funded by the Central Government.
  • This portal networks the existing Agriculture Produce Marketing Committee (APMC) / Regulated Marketing Committee (RMC) market yards, sub-market yards, private markets and other unregulated markets to create a unified national market for agricultural commodities.
  • The aim of the e-NAM scheme is to promote uniformity in agriculture marketing by
    1. Streamlining of procedures across the integrated markets,
    2. Removing information asymmetry between buyers and sellers and
    3. Promoting real time price discovery based on actual demand and supply.
  • eNAM facilitate pan-India trade in agriculture commodities in order to provide better price discovery through transparent auction process based on quality of produce along with timely online payment.
  • Small Farmers Agribusiness Consortium (SFAC) is the lead agency for implementing eNAM under the aegis of Union Ministry of Agriculture and Farmers’ Welfare.
  • Criteria for APMCs to join e-NAM - The state APMC Act must have a specific provision for e-auction / e-trading as mode of price discovery.
  • There must be one single trading license to be valid across the state / UT
  • A single point levy of market fee across the State / UT
  • Related Links - New Features to eNAM, Gramin Agricultural Markets

Reference

  1. https://pib.gov.in/PressReleasePage.aspx?PRID=1841544
  2. https://www.enam.gov.in/web/
  3. https://darpg.gov.in/sites/default/files/enam_0.pdf
  4. https://asfac.assam.gov.in/portlet-sub-innerpage/what-is-equity-grant-scheme#:~:text=The%20Equity%20Grant%20Scheme%20enables,up%20capital%20not%20exceeding%20Rs.
  5. http://sfacindia.com/Equity_grant.aspx

Naari Adalat

Naari Adalat scheme is part of the umbrella scheme Mission Shakti, which comprises of sub-schemes for women’s safety and empowerment.

  • Naari Adalat (Women’s Courts) will be implemented by the Ministry of Women and Child Development.
  • It will be led by women’s collectives in the country in a phased manner as an alternative grievance redressal mechanism to resolve “petty” disputes at the gram panchayat level.
  • It has been added as a component to Mission Shakti to promote and facilitate alternative dispute resolution and gender justice in society and within families.
  • To know more about the Naari Adalat, click here.

Mission Shakti

  • Mission Shakti has been divided into two sub-schemes, ‘Sambal’ and ‘Samarthya’.
  • ‘Sambal’ sub-scheme is for safety and security of women.
  • It consists of the existing scheme of One-Stop Centres (OSC), Women Helplines (181-WHL) and Beti-Bachao-Beti-Padhao (BBBP).
  • It will be implemented as a centrally sponsored scheme with 100% funding from the Nirbhaya Fund/ MWCD budget.
  • These funds will be released directly to the district collector or the directorate/commissionerate in state/UT concerned.
  • ‘Samarthya’ sub-scheme is for empowerment of women.
  • It consists of existing schemes of Ujjwala, Swadhar Greh and Working Women Hostel.
  • In addition, the National Creche Scheme for children of working mothers and the Pradhan Mantri Matru Vandana Yojana (PMMVY) are also subsumed in ‘Samarthya’.
  • ‘Samarthya’ will be implemented as a centrally sponsored scheme with a funding ratio of 60:40 between the Centre and the state governments or UTs with legislature.
  • In the northeast and special category states, and UTs with legislature, the fund ratio will be 90:10.
  • For UTs without a legislature, 100% funding will be provided by the central government.

Reference

  1. https://www.thehindu.com/todays-paper/tp-national/naari-adalat-to-be-set-up-in-a-phased-manner/article65641972.ece
  2. https://pib.gov.in/PressReleaseIframePage.aspx?PRID=1809709
  3. https://theprint.in/india/mission-shakti-divided-into-two-sub-schemes-nari-adalats-added-as-women-collectives-wcd/819886/

Customs Duty Evasion

The Directorate of Revenue Intelligence (DRI) has issued a show-cause notice (SCN) on ‘Customs duty evasion’ to Oppo India.

  • The DRI found “incriminating” evidence against Oppo India indicating alleged wilful mis-declaration in description of certain items imported by the company for use in the manufacture of mobile phones.
  • This mis-declaration resulted in wrongful availment of ineligible duty exemption benefits by Oppo India amounting to Rs. 2,981 crore.
  • Oppo India had remitted/made provisions for payment of ‘Royalty’ and ‘Licence Fee’ to various multinational companies, including those based in China, in lieu of use of proprietary technology/brand/IPR license etc.
  • The said ‘royalty’ and ‘licence fees’ paid by Oppo India were not being added in the transaction value of the goods imported by them.
  • This is in violation of Section 14 of the Customs Act, 1962 read with Rule 10 of the Customs Valuation (Determination of Value of Imported Goods) Rules 2007. This led to the Duty evasion.

Reference

  1. https://www.thehindu.com/todays-paper/tp-national/oppo-india-gets-dri-notice-on-duty-evasion/article65637672.ece
  2. https://economictimes.indiatimes.com/industry/cons-products/electronics/dri-detects-customs-duty-evasion-of-rs-4389-cr-by-oppo-india/articleshow/92846953.cms
  3. https://www.financialexpress.com/industry/rs-4400-cr-tax-notice-to-oppo-india-revenue-dept-raises-heat-for-customs-duty-evasion/2592591/

Cosmic Cliffs & Stephan's Quintet

The NASA/ESA/CSA James Webb Space Telescope has released its next wave of images of cosmic cliffs and Stephan's Quintet.

  • Cosmic Cliffs are the mountains and valleys of a star-forming region NGC 3324 in the Carina Nebula, which is 7,600 light years away.
  • These are actually regions in space blasted away by intense UV radiation and stellar winds from very massive young stars in the centre of NGC 3324.
  • The haze rising from the “Cosmic Cliffs” is hot ionised gas released from the nebula due to intense UV radiation.
  • Protostellar jets, bursts of energy from newly forming stars, appear like flares of light around these young spots of light.
  • There are bubbles visible within the gas structure, being blown by radiation and stellar wind or ionised particles from baby stars.
  • Stephan's Quintet (galaxy cluster) is a cluster of four galaxies pulling at each other gravitationally, leading to streaming tails of dust, gas, and stars, and a fifth that is in the foreground.
  • The four interacting galaxies form the Hickson Compact Group 92 and are expected to merge together.
  • This provides insights into how early galaxies formed at the start of the universe.
  • Related Links - James Webb Space Telescope

cosmic_cliffs

Reference

  1. https://www.thehindu.com/sci-tech/science/nasa-releases-next-wave-of-images-from-james-webb-space-telescope/article65632088.ece
  2. https://theprint.in/science/cosmic-cliffs-galaxies-pulling-at-each-other-nasas-webb-offers-astonishing-glimpse-of-space/1037030/
  3. https://www.esa.int/Science_Exploration/Space_Science/Webb/Webb_reveals_Cosmic_Cliffs_a_glittering_landscape_of_star_birth

PM Fasal Bima Yojana

The Union Ministry of Agriculture announced that Andhra Pradesh has decided to rejoin the crop insurance scheme ‘Pradhan Mantri Fasal Bima Yojana (PMFBY)’ from the ongoing kharif season.

  • Andhra Pradesh was one of six states that have stopped implementation of the scheme over the last four years.
  • The other five, which remain out, are Bihar, Jharkhand, West Bengal, Jharkhand, and Telangana.
  • Andhra’s Reasons to opt out - The state left the PMFBY from rabi season 2019-20, stating the following reasons,
    1. The scheme should be voluntary;
    2. The states should be given options to choose the risks covered;
    3. The scheme should be universal;
    4. The cut-off date for enrolment should be flexible; and
    5. The state should be given option to use their own database of E-crop, an application used by the state government to collect information about crops.
  • Now, Andhra has rejoined as all these issues have been resolved now.
  • Structure of the scheme - Pradhan Mantri Fasal Bima Yojana (PMFBY) was launched by the government from kharif 2016.
  • It aims to support production in agriculture by providing affordable crop insurance to ensure comprehensive risk cover for crops of farmers against all non-preventable natural risks from pre-sowing to post-harvest stage, on an ‘Area Approach Basis’.
  • All farmers including sharecroppers and tenant farmers growing “notified crops” in the “notified areas” are eligible for coverage.
  • Initially, the scheme was compulsory for loanee farmers.
  • In 2020, the Centre revised it to make it optional for all farmers.
  • In the initial scheme, the rate of normal premium subsidy (difference between actuarial premium rate and rate of insurance premium payable by farmers) was to be shared equally between the Centre and states.
  • However, states and Union Territories are free to extend additional subsidy over and above the normal subsidy from their budgets.
  • In 2020, the Centre decided to restrict its premium subsidy to 30% for unirrigated areas and 25% for irrigated areas (from existing unlimited).
  • Earlier, there was no upper limit for the central subsidy.
  • Coverage of Crops - Food crops (cereals, millets and pulses); oilseeds; and annual commercial / annual horticultural crops are covered under the scheme.
  • In addition, pilots for coverage can be taken for those perennial horticultural/commercial crops for which standard methodology for yield estimation is available.

Rate of Premium to be paid by the farmer to Insurance Company

Type of Crop

Kharif

Rabi

Food grains including Cereals, Pulses and Oilseeds

2%

1.5%

Annual Horticulture and Commercial Crops

5%

Reference

  1. https://indianexpress.com/article/explained/simply-put-fasal-bima-whos-in-out-why-8029882/
  2. https://www.mygov.in/campaigns/pmfby/
  3. https://nationalinsurance.nic.co.in/en/pradhan-mantri-fasal-bima-yojana-pmfby
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