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Monthly DNA

26 Nov, 2022

21 Min Read

National Bio Energy Programme

GS-III : Economic Issues Renewable energy

National Bio Energy Programme

As part of the Azadi Ka Amrit Mahotsav, the Ministry of New and Renewable Energy recently organised a seminar on the National Bio Energy Programme in New Delhi in collaboration with UNIDO and the GEF.


  • Biomass is simply organic matter, which means it is derived from anything that is or has been alive, such as animal waste, crop waste, garden waste, and so on.
  • India has an abundance of renewable energy resources, which should be promoted in any way possible.
  • Animal waste, kitchen leftovers, crop residue, market waste, and faecal sludge are all examples of bio-waste generated in rural India.
  • Biogas is an environmentally friendly fuel, and its use helps to reduce carbon emissions and pollution.

The seminar's main highlights

  • They unveiled the National Bio Energy Programme Compendium and launched the Biourja and Biogas portals.
  • The BioUrja portal was created as a one-stop shop for registering and submitting online applications for Central Financial Assistance (CFA) grants to Waste to Energy projects, Biomass Briquette/Pellet manufacturing plants, and Biomass (non-bagasse) based cogeneration projects.
  • The Biogas Portal provides a high-level overview of biogas-related information.
  • It emphasised the concept of 'kachre-se-kanchan' and described waste as a source of wealth.

About National Bioenergy Programme:

  • The Ministry of New and Renewable Energy has announced the implementation of the National Bioenergy Programme in November 2022.
  • MNRE has extended the National Bioenergy Programme from FY 2021-22 to FY 2025-26.
  • The program's implementation has been recommended in two stages:
  • The first phase of the programme has been approved, with a budget of Rs. 858 crores.

The following sub-schemes will be included in the National Bioenergy Programme:

Waste to Energy Initiative

  • It is a Program on Energy from Urban, Industrial, and Agricultural Wastes/Residues designed to assist in the establishment of large Biogas, BioCNG, and Power plants.
  • The programme will be implemented by the Indian Renewable Energy Development Agency (IREDA).

Biomass Initiative

  • It is a Scheme to Support Briquettes and Pellets Manufacturing and Promotion of Biomass (non-bagasse) Based Cogeneration in Industries to support the establishment of pellets and briquettes for use in power generation and non-bagasse based power generation projects.

Biogas Initiative

  • To assist in the establishment of small and medium-sized biogas plants in rural areas.

Bioenergy's Benefits:

  • It contributes to clean cooking by using biogas.
  • Co-firing in thermal power plants using biomass pellets and briquettes, as well as BioCNG for transportation.
  • Establishment of biogas plants for clean cooking fuel, lighting, and meeting users' thermal and small power needs, resulting in GHG reduction, improved sanitation, women empowerment, and rural job creation.
  • Organically enhanced Bio-manure: The digested slurry from biogas plants is a rich source of manure that farmers can use to supplement or reduce their use of chemical fertilisers.
  • It is carbon neutral: As a byproduct of photosynthesis, biomass fuels emit the same amount of carbon into the atmosphere as plants absorb during their life cycle.
  • It reduces reliance on fossil fuels: Not only are fossil fuels limited in supply, but they also have environmental consequences, such as the release of large amounts of carbon dioxide into the atmosphere and the pollutants produced during extraction, transportation, and production.
  • Less costly than fossil fuels: While fossil fuel production requires a significant investment in equipment such as oil drills, gas pipelines, and fuel collection, biomass technology is significantly less expensive. Manufacturers and producers can generate higher profits with less output.

Other advantages include:

  • Support for national commitments to meet climate change targets
  • Imports of natural gas and crude oil will be reduced.
  • Protect yourself from fluctuations in the price of crude oil and natural gas.

Bioenergy's Drawbacks

  • Biomass energy is inefficient compared to fossil fuels: Some biofuels, such as ethanol, are inefficient when compared to gasoline. To increase its efficiency, it must be fortified with fossil fuels.
  • While biomass is carbon neutral, the use of animal and human waste increases the amount of methane gases, which are also harmful to the environment. Furthermore, the pollution produced by burning wood and other natural materials is comparable to that produced by burning coal and other types of energy resources.
  • Can result in deforestation: Because wood is one of the most commonly used biomass energy sources, massive amounts of wood and other waste products must be burned to generate the desired amount of power. While there is currently enough wood waste, there is a risk of deforestation in the future.

Initiative by the government

  • The Government of India launched GOBAR-Dhan in 2018 as part of the Biodegradable Waste Management component of the Swachh Bharat Mission (Grameen) (SMB-G) to improve village cleanliness and generate wealth and energy from cattle and organic waste.
  • SATAT is a development initiative that aims to provide a Sustainable Alternative to Affordable Transportation for both vehicle users and farmers and entrepreneurs.
  • This initiative has a lot of potential for improving municipal solid waste management and addressing the problem of polluted urban air caused

The Way Forward

  • Rural household: The benefits of using surplus biomass should be passed on to rural households in the form of an additional source of income for farmers.
  • The additional push in the form of a 20% higher standard CFA (central financial assistance) pattern for the north-eastern region and Gaushala/shelter was required at the time to create inclusiveness in a practical manner.

Source: PIB

Financial Consumer Protection (FCP)

GS-III : Economic Issues Financial Market

Financial Consumer Protection (FCP)

  • The OECD recently published a draft of proposed revisions to their 2011 High-level Principles on Financial Consumer Protection (FCP).

More on the news:

  • The OECD is working on ways to improve financial consumer protection, including determining what is needed to help consumers gain the confidence, knowledge, information, security, and choices they need to fully participate in financial markets.

The OECD's principles address three interconnected themes: financial well-being, digitalization, and sustainable finance.

  • The OECD's FCP principles for 2011 addressed ten thematic areas, including Market and consumer issues, Equitable and fair consumer treatment, Disclosures and transparency, and Financial education.
  • Two new principles were added in 2022: access and inclusion and quality financial products.
  • The updated principles also advise regulators to intervene in certain high-risk products, cultivate an appropriate firm culture, and use behavioural insights to improve consumer outcomes.

Regarding the Financial Market

  • The Financial Market is a place where financial products and services are regularly bought and sold.
  • It is involved in the purchase and sale of various types of investments, financial services, loans, and so on.

India's financial markets:

  • In India, the majority of trading takes place in two types of financial markets.
  • The first is the money market, and the second is the stock market.
  • The financial market includes banks and financial institutions.

Financial Consumer Protection (FCP)

  • It determines what is required to help consumers gain the confidence, knowledge, information, security, and choices they need to fully participate in financial markets.
  • Need for FCP: According to the RBI's financial inclusion index, an increasing number of people are entering financial markets.

The Importance of Financial Consumer Protection (FCP) in India

  • Disclosures and transparency: An effective FCP regime must ensure adequate and easily understood consumer disclosures.
  • However, an information dump for the sake of compliance defeats the purpose, especially in India, where financial literacy is low.

SEBI regulations:

  • Regulators like SEBI require certain financial service providers to assess customer suitability and conduct risk profiling prior to providing services.
  • Global practise: Countries such as the United Kingdom and New Zealand have issued guidelines to help identify and treat "vulnerable financial consumers."
  • India does not recognise this concept at the moment.
  • FCP will remain relevant in India, owing to the increasing number of UPI transactions and the largely unregulated status of cryptocurrencies.
  • RBI guidelines on digital lending: The RBI issued guidelines on digital lending, requiring entities that provide digital lending services to have a grievance redress officer, to assess a borrower's creditworthiness before extending credit, and to allow a borrower to exit without penalty.

Financial investment sustainability:

  • Consumers are increasingly interested in long-term financial investments.
  • Environmental, social, and governance factors are being incorporated into financial services providers' operations, products, and services.
  • FCP recommends increased transparency to assist consumers in making informed decisions.
  • SEBI's business responsibility and sustainability reporting (BRSR): To promote responsible corporate governance in the face of climate change, SEBI has transitioned from "business responsibility reporting" to "business responsibility and sustainability reporting" (BRSR).
  • Companies that are BRSR-eligible must provide ESG-related disclosures, including a sustainability performance report.
  • This enables investors to make an informed choice.
  • Similar disclosures are required in other market segments.

Greenwashing: The draught for 2022 also warns against "greenwashing."

  • This corresponds to an expert report presented at COP27.
  • Financial regulators must ensure that Indian corporations do not mislead consumers by making false claims about their progress toward climate targets.

Way Forward

  • As seen in the case of digital gold, the current regulatory landscape is sectoral and fragmented, resulting in regulatory arbitrage.
  • In order to protect consumers, regulators must work together.

About Organisation for Economic Co-operation and Development (OECD)

  • The Organization for European Economic Cooperation (OEEC) was formed to administer American and Canadian aid under the Marshall Plan for the reconstruction of Europe following World War II.
  • It is a forum whose members describe themselves as committed to democracy and the market economy, providing a platform for members to compare policy experiences, seek solutions to common problems, identify good practices, and coordinate domestic and international policies.
  • Economies: The majority of OECD members are high-income economies with a very high Human Development Index (HDI) and are considered developed.
  • The Secretary-General is the head of the OECD Secretariat and the chair of the OECD Council.
  • Selections for Secretary-General are made by consensus, which means that all member states must agree on a candidate.
  • Headquarters are in Paris, France.
  • Members: The OECD currently has 38 member countries.
  • India is not a member of the OECD.

Source: The Indian Express

Public office & Freedom Of Speech

GS-IV : Ethics Civil Service Values and Ethics in Public Administration

Public office & Freedom Of Speech

  • The Supreme Court has ruled that those in public service should practice self-control and refrain from saying anything that is derogatory or demeaning to their fellow citizens.
  • A five-judge Constitutional court has not yet decided whether restrictions on a public official's freedom of speech and expression are permissible.

What are the Judgement's High Points?

  • The court noted that if a public official makes a speech that has an adverse effect on a person, individuals always have a civil remedy at their disposal.
  • The court stated that regardless of what Article 19(2) may state, the country has a constitutional culture that places an inherent limit or constraint
  • According to Article 19(2), the State has the authority to enact laws that impose reasonable limitations on the exercise of the right to free speech and expression when doing so is necessary for maintaining national sovereignty and integrity, public order, morality, etc.

An earlier ruling:

  • A three-judge panel had referred to the Constitution bench in 2017 a number of concerns for decision, including whether a public official or minister can assert their First Amendment rights while expressing opinions on delicate subjects.
  • There were objections that a minister cannot take a personal position and that his words must be in line with government policy, hence the need for an authoritative statement on the subject arose.
  • The court previously stated that it would examine whether a reasonable restriction of morality or decency would apply to the fundamental right of speech and expression or if other favored fundamental rights would also have an influence.

What is The Code of Conduct ?

  • A code of conduct is a collection of guidelines, expectations, or standards of conduct for a person or a group that directs an organization's policies, activities, and systems in a way that benefits its stakeholders.
  • For instance, the Model Code of Conduct of the Election Commission of India is a set of rules for how political parties and candidates should behave during elections, particularly with regard to speeches, election day, polling booths, portfolios, election manifestos, processions, and general conduct.
  • Similar to this, a set of guidelines are established for government workers regarding how they should behave when carrying out their responsibilities.

What are the seven guiding principles of the civil servant code of conduct?

  • Selflessness: Decisions should only be made in the public interest by those holding public office. For the sake of obtaining money or other material advantages for themselves, their families, or their friends, they shouldn't do this.
  • Integrity: Public office holders shouldn't put themselves in any financial or other obligations to outside parties that could sway how they carry out their official responsibilities.
  • Objectivity: Holders of public office should base their decisions on merit when doing public business, including appointing public officials, granting contracts, or suggesting people for awards and perks.
  • Accountability & responsibility: Holders of public office are responsible to the public for their choices and deeds, and they must submit to the scrutiny that is suitable for their position.
  • Openness: People in positions of authority should be as transparent as possible about all the choices and acts they make. When the larger public interest clearly demands it, they should provide justification for their choices and only restrict information when necessary.
  • Honesty: Those in positions of authority have a responsibility to disclose any private interests that may affect their performance of their public duties and to take action to address any resulting conflicts in a way that safeguards the public interest.
  • Leadership: People in positions of authority should lead by example and support these values.

Way Forward

  • Over and above the seven principles of public service, several of the conclusions have broad applicability to the entire public service.
  • All governmental organisations should create codes of conduct that incorporate these values.
  • Independent Examination: Internal processes should be supplemented by independent scrutiny in order to maintain standards.

Source: Business Standard


GS-I : Art and Culture Religion


  • A book titled 'In Search of the Divine: Living Histories of Sufism in India' was recently published.

What is Sufism?

  • Sufism is a mystical form of Islam, a school of thought that emphasizes the spiritual search for God while rejecting materialism.
  • It is a type of Islamic mysticism that emphasizes asceticism. There is a great deal of emphasis on devotion to God.
  • Self-discipline is regarded as a necessary condition in Sufism for gaining knowledge of God through sense perception.
  • Due to the increasing materialism of the Caliphate, some religious people in Persia turned to asceticism at the beginning of 12 AD. They became known as "Sufis."
  • The Sufi movement in India began in 1300 A.D. and spread to South India in the 15th century.
  • Self-discipline was regarded as a necessary condition for gaining knowledge of God in Sufism. While orthodox Muslims place emphasis on external behaviour, Sufis place emphasis on inner purity.
  • Multan and Punjab were early hotspots, and it later spread to Kashmir, Bihar, Bengal, and the Deccan.


  • The term "Sufi" is most likely derived from the Arabic word "suf," which means "one who wears wool." Woollen clothing was traditionally associated with ascetics. Another possible origin is the Arabic word'safa,' which means purity.

Sufism's Stages:

  • Stage 1 (Khanqah): Started in the 10th century, also known as the Golden Age of Mysticism
  • Second Stage (Tariqa): 11-14th century, when Sufism was institutionalised and traditions and symbols began to be associated with it.
  • Tarifa (Third Stage): Sufism first gained popularity in the 15th century, when it was founded.

Sufi Major Orders:

  • Khwaja Moin-Uddin Chishti founded the Chishtiya Order in India.
  • It emphasised the doctrine of being one with God (wadat al-wujd), and its members were also pacifists.
  • They rejected all material things as distractions from God's contemplation.
  • They avoided any association with the secular state.
  • The recitation of God's names, both aloud and silently (dhikr jahr, dhikr khaf), was the foundation of Chisht practise.
  • Khwaja Moin-Uddin Chishti's teachings were carried on and popularised by disciples such as Khwaja Qutbuddin Bakhtiyar Kaki, Fareeduddin Ganj-e-Shakar, Nizam uddin Auliya, and Naseeruddin Charagh.

Sheikh Shahabuddin Suharwardi Maqtul established the Suhrawardi Order.

  • Unlike the Chishtis, the Suhrawardis accepted maintenance grants from the Sultans.

The Khwaja Baha-ul-din Naqshbandi Order was founded by Khwaja Baha-ul-din Naqshbandi.

  • Khwaja Bahauddin Naqshbandi founded this order in India.
  • The mystics of this Order have always stressed the importance of adhering to Shariat.

Read Also: Public office & Freedom Of Speech

Source: Frontline

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