1. e-Gopala App

The issue in news :

PM to launch e-Gopala App.

e-Gopala App:

  • E-Gopala App is a comprehensive breed improvement marketplace and information portal for the direct use of farmers.
  • At present no digital platform is available in the country for farmers managing livestock including:
  • buying and selling of disease-free germplasm in all forms (semen, embryos, etc.);
  • availability of quality breeding services (Artificial Insemination, veterinary first aid, vaccination, treatment, etc.)
  • and guiding farmers for animal nutrition, treatment of animals using appropriate ayurvedic medicine/ethno-veterinary medicine.
  • There is no mechanism to send alerts (on the due date for vaccination, pregnancy diagnosis, calving, etc.) and inform farmers about various government schemes and campaigns in the area.
  • The e-Gopala App will provide solutions to farmers on all these aspects.



  1. Doorstep Banking Services and EASE 2.0 Index Results

The issue in news

Finance Minister unveils Doorstep Banking Services and declares EASE 2.0 Index Results.

Doorstep banking services by PSBs:

  • As part of the EASE Reforms, ‘Doorstep Banking Services’ is envisaged to provide the convenience of banking services to the customers at their doorstep through the universal touchpoints of Call Centre, Web Portal or Mobile App.
  • Customers can also track their service requests through these channels.
  • The services shall be rendered by the Doorstep Banking Agents deployed by the selected Service Providers at 100 centres across the country.
  • The services can be availed by customers of Public Sector Banks at nominal charges.


EASE 2.0 Index

  • EASE Banking Reforms Index is a common reform agenda for PSBs aimed at institutionalizing clean and smart banking. It was launched in 2018.
  • EASE 2.0 built on the foundation laid in EASE 1.0 and furthered the progress on reforms.
  • Reform Action Points in EASE 2.0 aimed at making the reforms journey irreversible, strengthening processes and systems, and driving outcomes.

 How PSBs have fared?

  • PSBs have shown a healthy trajectory in their performance over four quarters since the launch of EASE 2.0 Reforms Agenda.
  • The overall score of PSBs increased by 37% between March-2019 and March-2020, with the average EASE index score improving from 49.2 to 67.4 out of 100.
  • Significant progress is seen across six themes of the Reforms Agenda, with the highest improvement seen in the themes of ‘Responsible Banking’, ‘Governance and HR’, ‘PSBs as Udyamimitra for MSMEs’, and ‘Credit off-take’.
  • The ‘Top Performing Banks’ were the Bank of Baroda, the State Bank of India and the erstwhile Oriental Bank of Commerce.
  • The ‘Top Improvers’ were the Bank of Maharashtra, the Central Bank of India and the erstwhile Corporation Bank.


  1. Village Poverty Reduction Plan

The issue in news

Self Help Groups across the country being geared up to prepare the Village Poverty Reduction Plan for integration with the Gram Panchayat Development Plans.


  • Article 243G of the Constitution intended to empower the Gram Panchayats (GPs) by enabling the State Governments to devolve powers and authority in respect of all 29 Subjects listed in the Eleventh Schedule for local planning and implementation of schemes for economic development and social justice.
  • The local bodies (GPs) play a significant role in the effective implementation of flagship schemes on subjects of national importance, for the transformation of rural India.
  • In 2015, the Fourteenth Finance Commission grants were devolved to GPs that provided them with an enormous opportunity to plan for their development themselves.
  • Since then, local bodies across the country are expected to prepare context-specific, need-based Gram Panchayat Development Plans (GPDP).


Gram Panchayat Development Plans (GPDP):

  • Gram Panchayat Development Plan (GPDP) brings together both the citizens and their elected representatives in the decentralized planning processes.
  • GPDP is expected to reflect the development issues, perceived needs and priorities of the community, including that of the marginalized sections.
  • Apart from the demand related to basic infrastructure and services, resource development and convergence of departmental schemes, GPDP has the potential to address the social issues as well.
  • GPDP is conducted from October to December every year across the country, under the People’s Plan Campaign (PPC).
  • Since the last two years, self-help groups and their federations under the DAY-NRLM are expected to participate in the annual GPDP planning process and prepare the Village Poverty Reduction Plan (VPRP).
  • This is as per the PPC guidelines and also as per a joint advisory issued by the ministries of Panchayati Raj and Rural Development.


What are Village Poverty Reduction Plans (VPRP)?

  • VPRP is a comprehensive demand plan prepared by the Self Help Group (SHG) network and their federations for projecting their demands and local area development which needs to be integrated with the Gram Panchayat Development Plan (GPDP).
  • The VPRP is presented in the Gram Sabha meetings.

Objectives of VPRP:

  • Prepare a comprehensive and inclusive demand plan of the community for local development.
  • Facilitate an interface between the SHG federation and Panchayati Raj institutions for the development of demand plans.
  • Strengthen the community-based organisations and their leadership for active participation in poverty reduction activities.
  • Demands under VPRP are categorized into five major components:
  • Social inclusion
  • Entitlement – to schemes like the MGNREGA, Ujjwala, ration cards, etc.
  • Livelihoods , Public goods and services
  • Resource development – demand for protection and development of natural resources like land, water, forest and other locally available resources
  • Social development



  1. Jigyasa Programme

The issue in news

Webinar on Scientific & Technological Interventions by CSIR-CMERI combating COVID-19 under Jigyasa programme.

About Jigyasa Programme:

  • It is a student – scientist connect programme.
  • It is implemented by the Council of Scientific and Industrial Research (CSIR) in collaboration with Kendriya Vidyalaya Sangathan (KVS).
  • The focus of this scheme is on connecting school students and scientists so as to extend students’ classroom learning with well-planned research laboratory-based learning.
  • Student Residential Programmes, scientists as teachers and teachers as scientists, lab-specific activities/onsite experiments, visits of scientists to schools/outreach programmes, science and maths clubs, projects of National Children’s Science Congress and tinkering laboratories are some of the activities included under the programme.
  • It will also enable the students and teachers to practically live the theoretical concepts taught in science by visiting CSIR laboratories and by participating in mini-science projects.


  1. Schemes of Department of Social Justice & Empowerment

The issue in news

Union Minister of Social Justice & Empowerment released Action Plan 2020-21 of all schemes of the Department of Social Justice & Empowerment.

Schemes under the Dept. of Social Justice & Empowerment

  • Free coaching for scheduled castes and other backward classes, national fellowship for scheduled castes & top class education for schedules castes.
  • Pradhan Mantri Adarsh Gram Yojana – The Scheme aims at integrated development of villages in which the population of Scheduled Castes is above 50%.
  • National Action Plan on Drug Demand Reduction – read more on PIB dated Dec 3, 2019.
  • Integrated Programme for Rehabilitation of Beggars
  • National Action Plan for Senior Citizens
  • National Safai Karamcharis Finance & Development Corporation (NSKFDC):
  • The Corporation has launched a new scheme with a view to promote mechanized cleaning
  • and to minimize the incidents of Manual Hazardous cleaning, to providing financial assistance to its target group for procurement
  • and operation of mechanized cleaning equipment under its Swachhta Udyami Yojna (SUY) with a provision of 50% capital subsidy for equipment costing up to Rs.5 Lakh.
  • The NSKFDC functions under the Ministry of Social Justice & Empowerment, GOI.
  • Setting up a National Helpline against atrocities on members of SCs/STs with Web based self-service portal for generation of awareness and effective implementation of the PCR Act 1955 and the POA Act 1989.
  • PCR Act 1955 – Protection of Civil Rights Act, 1955, POA Act 1989 – Prevention of Atrocities Act, 1989
  • Post-matric scholarships for SCs and Backward Classes.
  • VISVAS Yojana Vanchit Ikai Samooh aur Vargon ki Aarthik Sahayta Yojana (VISVAS) is for : The benefit of Scheduled Castes and OBC Sel Help Groups/Individual member with annual family income up to Rs. 3 Lakh.

Interest subvention on bank loans at 5% is available under the scheme.

The scheme will be implemented by the National Scheduled Castes Finance Development Corporation (NSFDC) and National Backward Classes Finance and Development Corporation (NBCFDC).



  1. Aatmanirbhar Bharat ARISE-ANIC Initiative

The issue in news

Atal Innovation Mission Launches Aatmanirbhar Bharat ARISE-ANIC Initiative.

About Aatmanirbhar Bharat ARISE-ANIC Initiative:

  • The programme was launched with the aim of spurring applied research and innovation in Indian MSMEs and start-ups.
  • The programme will be driven by the Indian Space Research Organization (ISRO), four ministries— Ministry of Defence; Ministry of Food Processing Industries; Ministry of Health and Family Welfare; and Ministry of Housing and Urban Affairs—and associated industries to facilitate innovative solutions to sectoral problems.
  • The Aatmanirbhar Bharat ARISE–ANIC programme will support deserving applied research-based innovations by providing funding support of up to Rs 50 lakh for speedy development of the proposed technology solution and/or product.

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