Indian Express Editorial Summary

Editorial Topic 1: Make it farmer friendly

GS-3 Mains : Agriculture

Revision Notes

Note : Please Don’t Stress on Data 


  • Agricultural exports in 2023-24: $48.9 billion (target: $60 billion)
  • Decline of 8% compared to 2022-23 ($53.2 billion)
  • Average annual growth rate: 1.9% (2014-15 to 2023-24)

Comparison with UPA Era

  • Average annual growth rate: 20% (2004-05 to 2013-14)
  • Exports surged from $8.7 billion (2004-05) to $43.3 billion (2013-14)

Reasons for Decline

  • Momentum not sustained under NDA government
  • Trade surplus decline: $27.7 billion (2013-14) to $16 billion (2023-24)

Major Exports

  • Rice (16.3 million tonnes, $10.4 billion) – 21% share
  • Marine products ($7.3 billion) – 15% share
  • Spices ($4.25 billion) – 9% share
  • Bovine meat ($3.7 billion) – 8% share
  • Sugar ($2.8 billion) – 6% share


  • Potential to reach $200 billion if UPA era growth sustained

Main Influences

  • Global agri-produce prices
  • Indian agri-export policies

Global Prices

  • High global prices lead to higher Indian exports (e.g., UPA era).
  • Low global prices hurt Indian competitiveness (e.g., initial Modi years).

Indian Policies

  • Recent export restrictions/bans on wheat, rice, sugar, onions:
    • Driven by domestic food inflation concerns.
    • Examples:
      • May 13, 2022: Ban on wheat exports.
      • June 2022: Restrictions on sugar exports.
      • July 20, 2023: Ban on non-basmati white rice and broken rice exports.
      • August 25, 2023:
        • 20% duty on parboiled non-basmati rice exports.
        • Minimum export price (MEP) on basmati rice ($1200/tonne, later reduced to $950/tonne).
      • Recent onion export ban lifted, replaced with:
        • 40% duty.
        • MEP of $550/tonne.

Impact of Rice Export Restrictions (Example)

  • International rice price surged 25% after India’s restrictions (April-June 2023: $494/tonne, Jan 2024: $620/tonne).
  • Helped basmati and parboiled rice exporters get better prices.
  • Rice export volume dropped 27% (22.3MT in 2022-23 to 16.3MT in 2023-24).
  • Export value only decreased 6% ($11.1 billion to $10.4 billion).

Optimal Export Quantity

  • Global rice market: 53 MT
  • India’s 2022-23 rice exports: 22 MT
  • Trade theory: optimal export tax for maximizing revenue
  • Research suggests optimal Indian rice exports: 15-16 MT
  • More exports beyond this lead to diminishing returns

Policy Recommendations

  • Lift export ban on rice.
  • Implement 15% export duty on common and parboiled rice.

Environmental Concerns

  • 65% of India’s rice cultivation is irrigated.
  • Depleting groundwater, especially in Punjab-Haryana.
  • High water usage: 3,000-5,000 liters per kg of rice.
  • Exporting 16.3 MT of rice uses 32.6 billion cubic meters of water.

Sustainable Export Practices

  • Reduce reliance on subsidized power and fertilizers.
  • Invest in agricultural R&D, seeds, irrigation, and resource-efficient practices.
  • Lower per-unit production costs through strategic investments.
  • Enhance global competitiveness and increase agricultural exports.

Consumer Bias in Onion Export Policy

  • Recent onion export policy:
    • Opened before Maharashtra elections.
    • High MEP ($550/tonne) and 40% duty.
    • Effective export price: Rs 65/kg (below production cost).
  • Farmers selling onions domestically at Rs 13-15/kg (loss-making).
  • Export opportunity could have increased domestic prices for farmers.


  • Recent government policies favor consumers, hurting farmers’ income.
  • Policy shift needed to improve farmers’ well-being.



Indian Express Editorial Summary

Editorial Topic 2: A safer web

GS-1 or GS-2 Mains exam  : Society , Children

Revision Notes

Question : Discuss the observations made by the Delhi High Court regarding the need for enhanced tools to safeguard minors in the digital age, particularly in navigating online interactions safely. Analyze the challenges posed by the evolving digital landscape and its impact on children’s safety online.

Protecting Children Online

  • Challenge:Technology’s integration into daily life raises concerns about protecting vulnerable populations.

Delhi High Court Observation (May 6th)

  • Justice Swarana Kanta Sharma: Minors need tools to navigate online interactions safely and recognize “virtual touch” risks.
  • “Good touch” and “bad touch” education (physical world) is insufficient for the digital age.

The Evolving Digital Landscape

  • Over 3 decades, understanding the web’s impact on society (especially children) struggles to keep pace with technology.
  • “Digital natives” (born late 1990s onwards) lack experience of a world without the internet.
  • Adults designing safeguards may use outdated (analog) approaches to digital challenges.

Threats to Children Online

  • Increased exposure to dangers: child sexual abuse, online harassment, cyberbullying, blackmail.

Legislative Efforts

  • Protection of Children from Sexual Offences (POCSO) Act
  • Digital Personal Data Protection (DPDP) Act (parental consent required for child data processing)

Limitations of Legislation

  • The internet’s dynamic nature makes legislation a limited tool.

Effective Protection Strategies

  • Start at home and in classrooms.
  • Foster open communication between children and adults.
  • Address children’s concerns and experiences.
  • Teach about:
    • Appropriate online behavior
    • Recognizing signs of predatory behavior
    • Importance of privacy settings and online boundaries

Quote: Justice Sharma: “Equip minors with knowledge and tools to navigate online interactions safely…”


Keeping Children Safe Online

Education (Teach):

  • Strong Passwords & Personal Info Security
  • Caution with Links & Downloads (Unknown Sources)
  • Critical Thinking: Question Online Information

Positive Online Behavior:

  • Discuss Cyberbullying & Online Etiquette

Tools (Use):

  • Parental Controls (Devices & Platforms)
  • Antivirus & Anti-Malware Software

Open Communication (Practice):

  • Safe Space for Concerns (No Punishment)
  • Regular Conversations about Online Activities
  • Be a Role Model (Good Online Habits)


  • Internet a valuable resource for children.
  • Balanced approach needed (Safety & Access Rights).
  • Focus on facts and figures: No mention of specific software/platforms.


Additional Information ( Arora IAS)

POCSO Act Features

  1. Child Definition:POCSO defines a “child” as anyone under 18 years old.
  2. Gender Neutrality:The Act applies equally to the protection of girls and boys.
  3. Offenses Covered:Defines various forms of sexual abuse including assault, harassment, pornography, and trafficking.
  4. Severity:Prescribes rigorous imprisonment for aggravated offenses, including the death penalty in extreme cases.
  5. Special Courts:Establishes dedicated courts for faster and more sensitive handling of child sexual offense cases.
  6. Confidentiality:Protects the identity of the victim throughout the legal process.
  7. Mandatory Reporting:Makes it a legal duty to report suspected child sexual abuse.
  8. Child-Friendly Approach:Ensures a child-friendly investigation process to minimize re-traumatization.


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