GS PAPER I
Janjatiya Gaurav Divas
Why in News
- The Union Cabinet chaired by the Prime Minister has approved to declare 15 November as Janjatiya Gaurav Divas.
- This day is dedicated to the memory of the brave tribal freedom fighters so that the coming generations can know about their sacrifices towards the country.
- India’s freedom struggle was strengthened through various movements by several tribal communities like Santhal, Tamar, Kol, Bhil, Khasi and Mizo.
- The revolutionary movements and struggles of the tribal communities are known for their immense courage and supreme sacrifice.
- Tribal movements against British colonial rule in different regions of the country were linked to the national freedom struggle and inspired Indians across the country.
- However, most of the people of the country are not much aware of these tribal heroes.
- In line with Prime Minister Shri Narendra Modi’s speech on Independence Day 2016, the Government of India has approved 10 Tribal Freedom Fighters Museums across the country.
- November 15 is the birth anniversary of Shri Birsa Munda, who is worshiped as a god by tribal communities across the country.
- Birsa Munda fought valiantly against the exploitative system of British colonial system and led the movement against British repression calling for ‘ulgulan’ (revolution).
- This announcement of the cabinet gives approval to the glorious history and cultural heritage of the tribal communities.
- This Janjatiya Gaurav Divas will be observed every year and will recognize the efforts of tribals to preserve cultural heritage and promote Indian values of valor, hospitality and national pride.
- Tribal Freedom Fighters Museum will be inaugurated by Prime Minister Shri Narendra Modi in Ranchi where Lord Birsa Munda breathed his last.
- Government of India has planned to organize a week long function from 15th November to 22nd November 2021 to celebrate and celebrate 75 years of glorious history of tribal people, culture and achievements.
- As part of this function, several activities have been planned jointly with the State Governments.
- The theme of each activity is to showcase the achievements of the tribal people in the Indian freedom struggle, various welfare measures taken by the Government of India for education, health, livelihood, infrastructure and skill development.
- These programs will also showcase the unique tribal cultural heritage, their contribution to the freedom struggle, practices, rights, traditions, cuisine, health, education and livelihood.
GS PAPER II
MP Local Area Development Scheme (MPLADS)
Why in News
- The Union Cabinet, chaired by the Prime Minister, has approved the restoration of Parliamentarian Local Area Development Scheme (MPLADS) during the remaining months of the financial year 2021-22 and the period of 15th Finance Commission as well as Finance. It has been approved to continue till the year 2025-26.
- MPLADS is a central sector scheme for which the entire amount is provided by the Government of India.
- The objective of the scheme is to enable MPs to recommend development works primarily in their respective constituencies with special focus on building durable community assets in the areas of drinking water, primary education, public health, sanitation and roads, etc. emphasis is given.
- The specified annual MPLADS amount per MP constituency is Rs 5 crore, which is released in two installments of Rs 2.5 crore each.
- Each installment is released subject to fulfillment of the prescribed conditions as per the guidelines of MPLADS.
- In order to deal with the health related as well as other adverse effects of Kovid-19 in the society, the cabinet in its meeting held on 6th April, 2020, decided not to operate MPLADS during the financial years 2020-21 and 2021-22 and To deal with the effects of the Kovid-19 epidemic, it was decided to keep this amount under the Ministry of Finance.
- As the country is now on the path of economic recovery and the scheme continues to be beneficial in terms of creation of durable community assets, meeting the local needs of the community, skill development and employment generation across the country, and thus The Union Cabinet has now decided to reinstate the MP Local Area Development Scheme (MPLADS) during the remaining months of the financial year 2021-22 and along with the 15th Finance Commission period, which is extremely helpful in achieving the objective of ‘Atmanirbhar Bharat’. It has been decided to continue the MPLADS till the financial year 2025-26.
- The Ministry will fund MPLADS at the rate of Rs 2 crore per MP for the remaining period of FY 2021-22 in one installment and Rs 5 crore per MP per year for the period from FY 2022-23 to FY 2025-26 2.5 crore each in two installments at the rate of Rs.
- A total of 19, 86,206 works/projects have been completed since the inception of this scheme, at a financial cost of Rs.54171.09 crore.
Implementation Strategy and Goals:
- The MPLADS Scheme is governed by the Guidelines, which are amended from time to time.
- The process under MPLADS begins with the Members of Parliament recommending the works to the Nodal District Authority.
- The concerned Nodal District is responsible for implementing the works recommended by the Members of Parliament and maintaining the details of the works executed and the amount spent under the scheme.
- Resumption of MPLADS and continuation of its implementation will lead to the resumption of community development projects/works in the area, which were stalled due to paucity of funds under MPLADS.
- This will lead to the resumption of creation of permanent assets, which is the primary objective of MPLADS, to meet the aspirations and development needs of the local community.
- The scheme will also help in reviving the local economy.
- MPLADS is a central sector scheme, fully funded by the Government of India. The objective of the scheme is to enable Members of Parliament to recommend development works in their constituencies with emphasis on creation of sustainable community assets, primarily in the areas of drinking water, primary education, public health, sanitation and roads etc.
- The annual MPLADS fund for each Parliamentary Constituency is Rs 5 crore, which is released in two installments of 2.5 crore each and is subject to fulfillment of conditions under the MPLADS guidelines.
- The Ministry has got third party evaluation of MPLADS works done in 216 districts across the country during 2021. The evaluation report recommends continuation of MPLADS.
GS PAPER II
Mineral Conservation and Development (Amendment) Rules, 2021 Notified
Why in News
- The Ministry of Mines has notified the Mineral Conservation and Development (Amendment) Rules- 2021 to amend the Mineral Conservation and Development Rules, 2017 [MCDR] on November 3, 2021.
- The MCDR was created under section 18 of the Mines and Minerals (Development and Regulation) Act, 1957 [MMDR Act] to provide rules regarding conservation of minerals, systematic and scientific mining, development of minerals in the country and protection of the environment.
- The revised rules have been framed after extensive consultation with State Governments, Industry Associations, Miners, other stakeholders and general public.
Following are the major points of amendment in these rules:
- These rules stipulate that all plans and sections relating to a mine, in accordance with the specific directive of the Indian Bureau of Mines (IBM), shall be subjected to some or all of the leases using the Digital Global Positioning System (DGPS) or a combination of total station or drone surveys.
- A new rule has been added to provide for the submission of digital photographs of the mining area of the lessees and the letter of intent holders. Lessees with annual mining plan of 1 million tonnes or more or lessees with leased area of 50 hectares or more need to submit drone survey photographs every year up to 100 meters outside the lease area and lease boundary. Other lessees will be required to submit high resolution satellite photos. The move will not only improve mine planning practices, safety of mines but also ensure better supervision of mining operations.
- Provision for collection of high resolution georeferenced earth-rectified multispectral satellite photos as per Rule 34A and the need to submit satellite photos obtained from Cartosat-2 satellite LISS-IV sensor on the scale of geo-asset map for use by drone survey. In view of the entry has been removed.
- The provision of daily returns has been removed to reduce the compliance burden. At the same time, the power to take action against incomplete or incorrect or fake information in the monthly or annual return has been given to IBM in addition to the state government.
- Appointment of a part-time mining engineer or a part-time geo-scientist has been permitted for ‘A’ category mines having lease area of less than 25 hectares. This will reduce the compliance burden on small miners.
- To enhance employment opportunities, Diploma in Mining and Mine Surveying from a duly recognized institution along with a Class II certificate of eligibility issued by the Director General of Mines Safety has been added to the eligibility for full time Mining Engineer. Apart from this, eligibility has also been added for part time mining engineer
- Penal provisions have been rationalized in the rules. Earlier there were provisions for imprisonment of up to 2 years or fine up to Rs 5 lakh or both for every contravention, irrespective of the gravity of the violation.
The amendment to the rules classifies violations of the rules under the following major heads:
Major violations: Imprisonment, fine or both.
- Penalty reduced, for such violations only the penalty of fine has been prescribed.
- Violation of other rules has been removed from the category of offence. These rules do not impose any specific obligation on the person receiving the concession or any other person. In this way, the violation of 24 rules has been made crime free.
- Added a provision for forfeiture of financial insurance or performance security of the lessee in case the final mine closure plan is not submitted within the stipulated period.
- The amount of financial insurance for Category ‘A’ and Category ‘B’ mines has been increased from the existing Rs.3 lakh and Rs.2 lakh to Rs.5 lakh and Rs.3 lakh respectively.
GS PAPER III
International solar alliance
Why in News
- In order to accelerate the adoption of solar energy around the world, the US also joined the International Solar Alliance (ISA) as a member country.
- This was announced by John Kerry, the US President’s special envoy to the UNFCCC COP26 Climate Conference.
- The US has become the 101st country to sign an ISA framework agreement to accelerate the global energy transition through a solar-powered approach.
- Signing the Framework Agreement, John Kerry, the US President’s Special Envoy on Climate, said, “We are delighted to join the International Solar Alliance, led by Prime Minister Narendra Modi. We have studied the details in this regard and it is a process that we are happy to be a part of. This will be an important contribution towards faster and more use of solar energy globally. This will be especially important for developing countries.
Steering Committee of GGI-OSOWOG
- Earlier at COP26, the United States also joined the GGI-OSOWOG Steering Committee, consisting of five members – the US, Australia, France, the UK and India – and also the ‘One Sun’ Declaration with the support of 80 countries issued.
- US Energy Secretary Jennifer Granholm had said, ‘The combination of the grid and the sun can protect our planet. GGI-OSOWOG is focusing on important topics.
About the International Solar Alliance
- The ISA is a treaty-based intergovernmental organization whose primary function is to catalyze solar development worldwide by reducing the cost of financing and technology.
- ISA is committed to positioning solar energy as a common solution that simultaneously addresses climate, energy and economic priorities across all geographies, facilitating energy transition at the global level, energy security at the national level and at the local level. Ensures access to energy.
- ISA is helping major countries meet global commitments to make the planet safer by reducing carbon emissions. It also helps economically weaker countries establish a self-sustaining energy alternative, which reduces trade dependence and promotes job creation.
- Universal, affordable and reliable electricity connectivity across socio-economic strata is an important pillar and targeted, tangible outcome of these joint efforts towards facilitating economic growth and environmental impact.
GS PAPER III
Why in News
- India launched a web portal on Electric Vehicles (EVs) ‘e-Amrit’ at the ongoing COP26 Summit in Glasgow, UK.
- ‘e-Amrit’ is a one-stop destination or portal for all information related to Electric Vehicles where all myths or misconceptions about Electric Vehicles (EV) adoption, purchase, investment opportunities, policies, subsidies, etc. have been completely removed.
- This portal is developed and hosted by NITI Aayog as part of a collaborative knowledge exchange program with the British Government. Not only this, this portal is part of the UK-India Joint Roadmap 2030 which has been signed by the Prime Ministers of both these countries.
- ‘e-Amrit’ will actually complement the initiatives taken by the government to raise awareness about electric vehicles and make consumers aware of the benefits of adopting electric vehicles.
- In recent months, India has taken several initiatives to decarbonise transport across the country and accelerate the adoption of electric mobility.
- Schemes like ‘FAME’ and ‘PLI’ are particularly important in creating a conducive environment for early adoption of Electric Vehicles (EVs).
- NITI Aayog aims to add many more features and introduce innovative tools to make this portal more interactive and user friendly.
- The launch event was attended by UK high-level climate action champion Nigel Topping and NITI Aayog advisor Sudhendu Jyoti Sinha.