GS 2


  1. The 15th Finance Commission report.

The issue in news

Finance panel submits report with separate section on States’ finances

Main points

  • The Fifteenth Finance Commission has finalised its report for fund devolution from the Centre to States for the five years from 2021-22 to 2025-26.
  • The Commission was asked to give its recommendations on many unique and wide-ranging issues in its terms of reference.
  • Besides its main recommendation on devolution of funds between the Centre and the States for the period 2021-22 to 2025-26, the Commission addressed all its unique terms of reference, such as:
  • Considering a new non-lapsable fund for financing national security and defence spending.
  • Offering performance incentives to the States that deliver on reforms.
  • Apart from the main report, uniquely titled Finance Commission in Covid Times, the 15th Finance Commission presented two volumes as part of its submissions.
  • One focuses on the state of the Centre’s finances, with in-depth scrutiny of the key departments, medium-term challenges facing the Centre and a road map for future.
  • The other volume is dedicated to the States, with the finances of each analysed in great depth. It has come up with State-specific considerations to address the key challenges that individual States face.




  1. India, Maldives sign four MoUs to boost ties

The issue in news

New Delhi and Male have signed four agreements during India’s Foreign Secretary’s visit to the Maldives.

Main points

  • It includes a $100 million Indian grant for an ambitious connectivity project.
  • This is a part of India’s “$500 million package” for the Greater Male Connectivity Project (GMCP).
  • The two governments had earlier inked a deal for a $400 million line of credit from the Exim Bank of India.
  • Two MoUs have been signed for high impact community development projects.
  • A fourth MoU was signed on cooperation in sports and youth affairs.



Amid India’s concern over China’s growing influence in the region, the ties with the Maldives have remained under sharp focus.

GS 3

Category: ECONOMY

  1. Academic credit banks, degree with entry and exit option soon

The issue in news

Changes to be brought about under the first National Agricultural Education Policy.


The policy is set to bring:

  • Academic credit banks.
  • Degree programmes with multiple entry and exit options to the 74 universities focussed on crop sciences, fisheries, veterinary and dairy training and research.
  • The new policy is drafted to usher in some changes to the academic life of students of agricultural universities in line with the National Education Policy.



  • The Student READY (Rural Entrepreneurship Awareness Development Yojana) programme requires all students to undertake a six-month internship, usually in their fourth year, to gain hands-on training, rural awareness, industry experience, research expertise and entrepreneurship skills.



  • A major challenge for agricultural universities could be the push for multi-disciplinarity.
  • Another major challenge is to ensure that experiential learning is made available to all students if the multiple entry-exit system is implemented.

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