Can the NEP aid access to universal education?
By, Anita Rampal, is a former Dean, Faculty of Education at Delhi University; Leena Chandran Wadia was a senior consultant in the Kasturirangan Committee
Is the NEP’s 10-year deadline, to make all children entering Grade 1 school-ready through Early Childhood Care and Education, practical?
With the NEP silent on last year’s draft proposal to expand the RTE Act’s scope to cover children from 3 to 18 years, can universal education be attained?
What about concerns on the proposal to create school complexes? The Kothari Commission recommended it.
Will the thrust on vocational education weaken students academically, perpetuate hereditary occupations or lead to early exits?
With such sweeping school reforms, is a National Testing Agency needed to assess students for university admissions?
Does the NEP’s broad categorisation of Socio-Economically Disadvantaged Group (SEDG), hamper equity?
NEP drops Mandarin from language list
‘Rozgar Setu’ scheme
Pradhan Mantri Ujjwala Yojana
As part of the economic response to COVID-19, the Government of India has launched a pro-poor scheme “Pradhan Mnatri Garib Kalyan Package” (PMGKP), Under this scheme, Ministry of Petroleum and Natural Gas is providing free of cost LPG cylinders to over 8 crore PMUY beneficiaries for 3 months w.e.f 1.4.20. During April, 2020, Oil Marketing Companies(OMCs) have delivered 453.02 lakh cylinders to PMUY beneficiaries under PMGKP.
About Pradhan Mantri Ujjwala Yojana
Pradhan Mantri Ujjwala Yojana is a scheme of the Ministry of Petroleum & Natural Gas for providing LPG connections to women from Below Poverty Line (BPL) households.
In India, the poor have limited access to cooking gas (LPG). The spread of LPG cylinders has been predominantly in the urban and semi-urban areas with the coverage mostly in middle class and affluent households. But there are serious health hazards associated with cooking based on fossil fuels.
According to WHO estimates, about 5 lakh deaths in India alone due to unclean cooking fuels. Most of these premature deaths were due to non-communicable diseases such as heart disease, stroke, chronic obstructive pulmonary disease and lung cancer. Indoor air pollution is also responsible for a significant number of acute respiratory illnesses in young children. According to experts, having an open fire in the kitchen is like burning 400 cigarettes an hour.
Providing LPG connections to BPL households will ensure universal coverage of cooking gas in the country. This measure will empower women and protect their health. It will reduce drudgery and the time spent on cooking. It will also provide employment for rural youth in the supply chain of cooking gas.
Under the scheme, an adult woman belonging to a poor family not having LPG connection in her household, is an eligible beneficiary under the expanded scheme.
Release of LPG connection under this Scheme shall be in the name of the women belonging to the BPL family.
Initially, the Government covered the following categories under the Scheme :-
Benefits to the citizens
Under the scheme, five crore LPG connections are to be provided to BPL households. The Scheme provides a financial support of Rs 1600 for each LPG connection to the BPL households, interest free loan to purchase stove and refill by Oil Marketing Companies. The administrative cost of Rs. 1600 per connection, which includes a cylinder, pressure regulator, booklet, safety hose, etc. would be borne by the Government.
Pradhan Mantri Garib Kalyan Yojana scheme for the PMUY beneficiaries
As part of Pradhan Mantri Garib Kalyan Yojana scheme for the PMUY beneficiaries to enable them to combat COVID 19 crisis, availability of up to 3 refills for 14.2 kg cylinders and advance Retail Selling Price being transferred by OMCs to the PMUY customer’s bank account, which can be withdrawn to obtain the refill from the distributor has been announced.
Pradhan Mantri Awas Yojana (Urban)
The Pradhan Mantri Awas Yojana (Urban) Programme launched by the Ministry of Housing and Urban Poverty Alleviation (MoHUPA), in Mission mode envisions provision of Housing for All by 2022, when the Nation completes 75 years of its Independence. The Mission seeks to address the housing requirement of urban poor including slum dwellers through following programme verticals:
The mission seeks to address the housing requirement of urban poor including slum dwellers.
Note: A slum is defined as a compact area of at least 300 people or about 60 - 70 households of poorly built congested tenements in unhygienic environment usually with inadequate infrastructure and lacking in proper sanitary and drinking water facilities.
At the slum decadal growth rate of 34%, the slum households are projected to go upto 18 million. 2 million non-slum urban poor households are proposed to be covered under the Mission. Hence, total housing shortage envisaged to be addressed through the new mission is 20 million.
“Housing for All” Mission for urban area is being implemented during 2015-2022 .
Mission will be implemented as Centrally Sponsored Scheme (CSS) except for the component of credit linked subsidy which will be implemented as a Central Sector Scheme.
Mission with all its component has become effective from the date 17.06.2015 and will be implemented upto 31.03.2022.
Members of Parliament Local Area Development Scheme-MPLAD
Part of: GS-II- Governance (PT-MAINS-PERSONALITY TEST)
It was announced in December 1993 under the control of the Ministry of Rural Development. Later, in October 1994, it was transferred to the Ministry of Statistics and Programme Implementation.
It was constituted under Article 266 (1) of the Constitution of India.
It is made up of:
“Unnayan: Mera Mobile, Mera Vidyalaya”
Recently, the Bihar Education Project Council (BEPC) has launched a mobile application and plans to book a slot with the All India Radio (AIR) for the audio broadcast of study materials for government school students.
The mobile application named “Unnayan: Mera Mobile, Mera Vidyalaya” has been launched for Class VI to XII of over 70,000 government-run schools. The app has been jointly developed by the United Nations Children’s Fund (UNICEF), the Bihar government and Eckovation, a social learning platform. In collaboration with UNICEF, class-wise and subject-wise study materials are being prepared which will be broadcast by AIR.
The BEPC has also encouraged students for the use of online education portals like Diksha. On Diksha app NCERT books are available free of cost for Class 1 to XII and have also integrated audio-visual media along with digital textbooks.
ICDS HITS due to Lockdown
Part of: GS Prelims and GS-II- Governance (PT)
Due to Covid-19 lockdown, implementation of the Integrated Child Development Services (ICDS) is affected in large pockets across Maharashtra.
Integrated Child Development Services (ICDS) Programme
Swachhata App and Swachh Bharat Abhiyan
Part of: GS Prelims and GS-II- Governance (PT-MAINS-PERSONALITY TEST)
The Ministry of Housing and Urban Affairs (MoHUA) has launched a revised version of the existing Swachhata-MoHUA App to handle queries specific to Covid-19.
Swachh Bharat Abhiyan
Prime Minister of India Narendra Modi received the award of “Global Goalkeeper” from the Gates Foundation for the initiative of Swachh Bharat Abhiyan on September 25, 2019 in New York.
What is Swachh Bharat Abhiyan?
Swachh Bharat Abhiyan is one of the most popular and significant missions in the History of India. This campaign was introduced by the Prime Minister, Narendra Modi and was launched on 2nd October 2014 to honor Mahatma Gandhi’s vision of a Clean country.
Initially, this Swachh Bharat Abhiyan campaign was run on a national level in all the towns, rural and urban areas.
Swachh Bharat Abhiyan Objective
The major objective of the Swachh Bharat Abhiyan is to spread the awareness of cleanliness and the importance of it.
The concept of Swachh Bharat Abhiyan is to provide the basic sanitation facilities like toilets, solid and liquid waste disposal systems, village cleanliness and safe and adequate drinking water supply to each and every person.
Swachh Bharat Abhiyan Action Plan
The action plan for the Swachh Bharat Abhiyan is to be laid by the Ministry of Drinking Water and Sanitation. The vision is to triple the facility of sanitation by 2019. The major change to be implemented is in the Making of an Open Defecation Free(ODF) India.
Action Plan Highlights:
Swachh Bharat Mission (Urban)
At the core of this mission lie six components:
Swachh Bharat Mission (Rural)
Ranking of cities
Every year, cities and towns across India are awarded with the title of ‘Swachh Cities’ on the basis of their cleanliness and sanitation drive as a part of the Swachh Bharat Abhiyan that was launched in 2014.
According to the survey among top 50 clean cities:
SBM – Facts
Under the Swachh Bharat Mission, it has been decided to undertake a special clean-up initiative focused on 100 iconic heritage, spiritual and cultural places in the country.
Swachh Vidyalaya Abhiyan
The Ministry of Human Resource Development has launched Swachh Vidyalaya Programme under Swachh Bharat Mission with an objective to provide separate toilets for boys and girls in all government schools within one year. The programme aims at ensuring that every school in the country must have a set of essential interventions that relate to both technical and human development aspects of a good Water, Sanitation and Hygiene Programme.
The Ministry financially supports States/Union Territories inter alia to provide toilets for girls and boys in schools under Sarva Shiksha Abhiyan (SSA) and Rashtriya Madhyamik Shiksha Abhiyan (RMSA).
Rashtriya Swachhata Kosh
The Swachh Bharat Kosh (SBK) has been set up to facilitate and channelize individual philanthropic contributions and Corporate Social Responsibility (CSR) funds to achieve the objective of Clean India (Swachh Bharat) by the year 2019. The Kosh will be used to achieve the objective of improving cleanliness levels in rural and urban areas, including in schools. The allocation from the Kosh will be used to supplement and complement departmental resources for such activities. To incentivise contributions from individuals and corporate, modalities are being considered to provide tax rebates where it is possible.
Rural Sanitation Strategy: 2019-2029
Recently, the Department of Drinking Water and Sanitation (DDWS) under the Ministry of Jal Shakti has launched the 10-year Rural Sanitation Strategy starting from 2019 up to 2029.
Open Defecation Free (ODF), ODF+, ODF++ Status
India has seen a sanitation revolution in the form of SBM-G that transformed itself into a Jan Andolan (a people’s movement). Since the launch of the SBM-G in 2014, over 10 crore toilets have been built in rural areas. Till now, over 5.9 lakh villages in 699 districts and 37 States/UTs have declared themselves as Open Defecation Free (ODF).