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Prelim Bits 26-10-2021 | UPSC Daily Current Affairs

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October 26, 2021

Mullaperiyar Dam

Kerala Chief Minister has written to his Tamil Nadu CM, stressing the urgent need for the gradual release of water from the Mullaperiyar dam through the tunnel to Tamil Nadu.

  • The 130-year old Mullaperiyar dam is located on the confluence of the Mullayar and Periyar River in Kerala’s Idukki district.
  • It was built by Pennycuick to create a harmonious atmosphere in the east coast by taking the water there and have people cultivate crops.
  • It is operated and maintained by the Tamil Nadu for meeting the drinking water and irrigation requirements of 5 of its southern districts.
  • The dam resulted in the formation of a big lake - the Periyar Lake. People call it the Thekkady Wildlife Sanctuary.
  • Issues - Institute for Water, Environment and Health of the United Nations University has said that the Mullaperiyar dam suffers from structural issues and the possibility of a dam-break.
  • Moreover, the dam is located in an earthquake-prone area.
  • There is a leakage in the dam as the technology which was put into use for constructing the dam 125 years ago was obsolete compared to the sophisticated construction methods used now.
  • Sand mining became another major contributor to further deepening of rivers.
  • Related Links - Idukki Reservoir

PM Ayushman Bharat Health Infrastructure Mission

Prime Minister launched the Pradhan Mantri Ayushman Bharat Health Infrastructure Mission.

PM Ayushman Bharat Health Infrastructure Mission is a part of the effort to achieve holistic health care i.e., which means affordable and accessible healthcare to all.

  • PM Ayushman Bharat Health Infrastructure Mission aims to fill the gaps in public health infrastructure, mainly in critical care facilities and primary care in both urban & rural areas at regional and national level.
  • It is in addition to the National Health Mission.
  • Through this, critical care services will be available in all the districts of the country with more than five lakh population through exclusive critical care hospital blocks, while the remaining districts will be covered through referral services.

Major aspects of Ayushman Bharat Health Infrastructure Mission  

  • Creation of elaborate facilities for diagnostics & treatment - Health & Wellness Centers are being opened in villages and cities, where there will be facilities for early detection of diseases.
  • Facilities like free medical consultation, free tests, free medicine will be available in these centres.
  • Testing network for diagnosis of diseases - Necessary infrastructure will be developed for the diagnosis and monitoring of diseases - Integrated Public Health labs and Block Public Health Units.
  • Apart from that, 5 Regional National Centers for Disease Control, 20 Metropolitan units, and 15 BSL labs will further strengthen this network.
  • Expanding existing research institutions that study pandemics - PM Ayushman Bharat Health Infrastructure Mission aims to strengthen the existing Viral Diagnostic and research labs
  • Under the scheme, the following will be set up,
    1. A National Institution for One Health,
    2. 4 new National Institutes for Virology,
    3. A regional research platform for WHO South East Asia Region,
    4. 9 Biosafety level-III laboratories,
    5. 5 new regional national centre for disease control.
  • IT enabled disease surveillance system will be built by developing a network of surveillance laboratories at block, district, regional and national levels, in Metropolitan areas. 

Payroll Reporting in India

The National Statistical Office (NSO) has released the Employment Outlook of the country covering the period September, 2017 to August, 2021.

  • Since April, 2018, the National Statistical Office has been bringing out the employment related statistics in the formal sector covering the period September 2017 onwards.
  • This Employment Outlook is based on the information on the number of subscribers who have subscribed under three major schemes, namely the
    1. Employees’ Provident Fund (EPF) Scheme,
    2. Employees’ State Insurance (ESI) Scheme and
    3. National Pension Scheme (NPS).

National Statistical Office

  • National Statistical Office is the central statistical agency of the Government mandated under the Statistical Services Act 1980 under the Ministry of Statistics and Programme Implementation.
  • It is responsible for the development of arrangements for providing statistical information services to meet the needs of the Government and other users for information on which to base policy, planning, monitoring and management decisions.
  • The services include collecting, compiling and disseminating official statistical information.
  • All business operations in NSO are done in compliance with international standards, procedures and best practices.
  • Other reports released by NSO

Green Day Ahead Market

After the successful launch of Green Term-Ahead Market (GTAM) in 2020, the Green Day Ahead market (GDAM) was launched in India.

Day-Ahead-Market (DAM) is a physical electricity trading market for deliveries for any/some/all 15 minute time blocks in 24 hours of next day starting from midnight.

  • Green Day Ahead market (GDAM) is a marketplace for trading of renewable power on a day-ahead basis.
  • As the buyer’s behavior is shifting from long term contracts to short term contracts and also from fossil fuel to non-fossil fuel, this new initiative will help in enabling this energy transition.
  • The intent is to promote merchant green power plants and provide additional sale avenues to existing renewable power plants that are
    1. Facing payment risk with the distribution companies (DISCOM) under the existing Power Purchase Agreements (PPAs) or
    2. Have surplus energy.
  • The launch of the Green Day-Ahead Market will,
    1. Deepen the green market and
    2. Provide competitive price signals,
    3. Offer an opportunity to the market participants to trade in green energy, in a transparent, flexible, competitive & efficient manner.

Green Day Ahead Market

  • Buy & Sell - The distribution utilities would also be able to sell surplus renewable power generated in their area.
  • The obligated entities (distribution licensee, open access consumers and captive power consumers) would also be able to meet the RPO target by directly buying green power from the power exchange(s).
  • The non-obligated entities will be able to buy power on voluntary basis and help increasing the share of green power.
  • Domino Effect - Introduction of GDAM is expected to create a domino effect that will lead to a gradual shift from PPA based contract to market-based models.
  • These models will build and deepen the markets to the next level, paving the way for India to meet its target of 450 GW green capacity by 2030.
  • The other benefits of participating in the GDAM would be reduction of curtailment of green power, unlocking untapped renewable energy potential, ensuring instant payment to RE generators ie on the day of delivery itself.
  • Nodal Agency - National Load Despatch Centre (NLDC), POSOCO, as the Nodal Agency, has set up the latest technologies and communication infrastructure for facilitating the Green Day Ahead Market.
  • GDAM will operate in an integrated way with the conventional day-ahead market.
  • Working - The Exchanges will offer the market participants to submit bids together for both conventional & renewable energy through the separate bidding windows.
  • The clearance will take place in a sequential manner - renewable energy bids will be cleared first in accordance with the must run status of the renewables, followed by conventional segment.
  • This mechanism will allow renewable energy sellers to subsequently bid in the conventional segment should their bids remain uncleared in the green market.
  • There will be separate price discoveries for the both the conventional and renewables.

Amended Technology Up-gradation fund Scheme

Union Minister of Textiles reviewed the Amended Technology Up-gradation fund Scheme (ATUFS).

  • TUFS - Ministry of Textiles had introduced Technology Upgradation Fund Scheme (TUFS) in 1999 as a credit linked subsidy scheme for,
    1. Modernization and technology up-gradation of the Indian textile industry,
    2. Promoting ease of doing business,
    3. Generating employment and
    4. Promoting exports.
  • ATUFS - The ongoing ATUFS has been approved for a period from 2015-16 to 2021-22 in the year 2016.
  • It is a credit linked Capital Investment Subsidy (CIS) scheme to catalyze capital investments for technology upgradation and modernization of the textile industry.
  • It is implemented through web based iTUFS platform.
  • It facilitates augmenting of investment, productivity, employment, quality, exports along with import substitution in the textile industry.
  • It also indirectly promotes investment in textile machinery (having benchmarked technology) manufacturing.
  • Under ATUFS, the CIS is provided to benchmarked machinery installed by the industry after physical verification.
  • Every eligible individual entity (not the unit) will be entitled for reimbursement of CIS under this scheme, as per the following rates:


Rate of Capital Investment Subsidy

Garmenting,  Technical Textiles

15% subject to  an upper limit of Rs 30 crores

Weaving for brand new Shuttle-less Looms (including weaving preparatory and knitting), Processing, Jute, Silk and Handloom

10%  subject to  an upper limit of Rs 20 crores

Composite unit /Multiple Segments - If the eligible capital investment in respect of Garmenting and Technical Textiles category is,

           1) More than 50% of the eligible project cost


           2) Less than 50% of the eligible project cost




15% subject to an upper limit of Rs 30 crores


10% subject to an upper limit of Rs 20 crores

  • ATUFS is being administered with a 2-stage monitoring mechanism by
    1. Technical Advisory-cum-Monitoring Committee (TAMC) and
    2. Inter-Ministerial Steering Committee (IMSC).



  1. https://www.thehindu.com/todays-paper/pinarayi-urges-stalin-to-draw-mullaperiyar-water/article37156188.ece
  2. https://www.timesnownews.com/india/kerala/article/kerala-water-level-in-idukki-dam-mullaperiyar-dam-rises-details/825690
  3. https://www.thenewsminute.com/article/mullaperiyar-dam-sand-mining-history-slow-death-kerala-s-rivers-155310
  4. https://pib.gov.in/PressReleasePage.aspx?PRID=1766289
  5. https://pib.gov.in/PressReleasePage.aspx?PRID=1766112
  6. https://www.thehindu.com/news/national/pm-modi-launches-ayushman-bharat-health-infrastructure-mission/article37159801.ece
  7. https://pib.gov.in/PressReleasePage.aspx?PRID=1766372
  8. https://ihsmarkit.com/research-analysis/introduction-of-green-day-ahead-market-in-india.html
  9. https://pib.gov.in/PressReleseDetail.aspx?PRID=1606086
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