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PIB 25 & 26 November 2021





Focus: GS II- Government policies and Interventions

Why in News?

Recently, the Union Cabinet has approved the extension for the Pradhan Mantri Garib Kalyan Anna Yojana (PMGKAY-Phase V) for a period of another 4 months i.e. December 2021 till March 2022.

About Pradhan Mantri Garib Kalyan Anna Yojana:

  • It is considered as world’s largest food security scheme, aims at ensuring sufficient food for the poor and needy during the coronavirus crisis.
  • It was announced as part of the first relief package during the COVID-19 pandemic.
  • Part of the scheme, the food needs to be provided to all the beneficiaries under public distribution system (TPDS) for Antyodaya Anna Yojana (AAY) and priority household (PHH) ration cardholders.
  • As per updates, the eligible beneficiaries will receive 5kg of foodgrains and 1 kg Gram per month.


  • Families belonging to the Below Poverty Line – Antyodaya Anna Yojana (AAY) and Priority Households (PHH) categories will be eligible for the scheme.
  • PHH are to be identified by State Governments/Union Territory Administrations as per criteria evolved by them. AAY families are to be identified by States/UTs as per the criteria prescribed by the Central Government:
  • Households headed by widows or terminally ill persons or disabled persons or persons aged 60 years or more with no assured means of subsistence or societal support.
  • Widows or terminally ill persons or disabled persons or persons aged 60 years or more or single women or single men with no family or societal support or assured means of subsistence.
  • All primitive tribal households.
  • Landless agriculture labourers, marginal farmers, rural artisans/craftsmen such as potters, tanners, weavers, blacksmiths, carpenters, slum dwellers, and persons earning their livelihood on daily basis in the informal sector like porters, coolies, rickshaw pullers, hand cart pullers, fruit and flower sellers, snake charmers, rag pickers, cobblers, destitutes  and other similar categories in both rural and urban areas.
  • All eligible Below Poverty Line families of HIV positive persons.


GS I- Geography

Why in News?

The Cabinet Committee on Economic Affairs approved the continuation of Atmosphere & Climate Research-Modelling Observing Systems & Services (ACROSS) Scheme along with its eight sub-schemes to the next finance (15th) cycle of five years (2021-2026).

Atmosphere & Climate Research-Modelling Observing Systems & Services (ACROSS)

  • Ministry of Earth Science (MoES) has taken several initiatives to formulate specific schemes like weather and climate modelling, monsoon-research, climate change science & climate services and more.
  • These schemes involve multi-institutes wherein each unit has a designated role for accomplishing the aforesaid tasks and all these schemes with specific objectives and budget are implemented in an integrated manner and are put together under the umbrella scheme “ACROSS”.
  • There are eight sub-schemes under “ACROSS” scheme and they are implemented through the operating units: IMD, IITM (Institute of Tropical Meteorology), NCMRWF (National Centre for Medium Range Weather Forecasting), INCOIS (Indian National Centre for Ocean Information Services).
  • The sub-schemes are Commissioning of Polarimetric Doppler Weather Radars (DWRs), Upgradation of Forecast System, Weather & Climate Services, Atmospheric Observations Network, Numerical Modelling of Weather and Climate, Monsoon Mission III, Monsoon Convection, Clouds and Climate Change (MC4) and High Performance Computing System (HPCS).
  • It aims to provide a reliable weather and climate forecast for betterment of society.
  • It will aim at improving skill of weather and climate forecast through sustained observations, intensive research & development.
  • It will enhance effective dissemination and communication strategies to ensure its timely reach to the end-user of all services like Agro-meteorological services, Aviation services, Environmental monitoring services, climate services, tourism and more
  • It will integrate with number of agencies like the Krishi Vigyana Kendras of Indian Council of Agricultural Research, Universities and local municipalities for seamless and last mile connectivity in dissemination of information related to climate and weather.
  • This scheme offers highly advanced Monitoring, Detection and Early Warning of calamities like tropical cyclones, thunderstorms, dust storms, heavy rain, snow fall, cold and heat waves.
  • The climate services provided by the umbrella scheme benefit agriculture, aviation, tourism industries. Besides public weather services, environmental services, hydro meteorological services are also provided under the scheme.
  • The whole process from forecast to delivery requires huge labour thereby resulting in employment generation.


Focus: GS II: Polity and Governance

Why in News?

Prime Minister  chaired the meeting of 39th edition of PRAGATI, the ICT based multi-modal platform for Pro-Active Governance and Timely Implementation, involving Centre and State governments.


  • PRAGATI (Pro-Active Governance And Timely Implementation), as the name suggests, is aimed at starting a culture of Pro-Active Governance and Timely Implementation.
  • It is also a robust system for bringing e-transparency and e-accountability with real-time presence and exchange among the key stakeholders.
  • The platform was launched in 2015 is a multi-purpose and multi-modal platform that is aimed at addressing common man’s grievances, and simultaneously monitoring and reviewing important programmes and projects of the Government of India as well as projects flagged by State Governments.
  • It is a three-tier system (PMO, Union Government Secretaries, and Chief Secretaries of the States)
  • The PRAGATI platform uniquely bundles three latest technologies, digital data management, video-conferencing and geo-spatial technology. It also offers a unique combination in the direction of cooperative federalism since it brings on one stage the Secretaries of Government of India and the Chief Secretaries of the States.
  • The Prime Minister will hold a monthly programme where he will interact with the Government of India Secretaries, and Chief Secretaries through Video-conferencing enabled by data and geo-informatics visuals


Focus: GS I- Geography

Why in News?

The Union Cabinet approved the continuation of the umbrella scheme “Ocean Services, Modelling, Application, Resources and Technology (O-SMART)” of Ministry of Earth Sciences, for implementation during the period from 2021-26 at an overall cost of Rs. 2177 crore.

About O-SMART:

  • The scheme encompasses seven sub-schemes namely Ocean Technology, Ocean Modelling and Advisory Services (OMAS), Ocean Observation Network (OON), Ocean Non-Living Resources, Marine Living Resources and Ecology (MLRE), Coastal Research and Operation and Maintenance of Research Vessels.
  • These sub-schemes are being implemented by autonomous/attached institutes of the Ministry, viz. National Institute of Ocean Technology (NIOT), Chennai; Indian National Center for Ocean Information Services (INCOIS), Hyderabad; National Centre for Polar and Ocean Research (NCPOR), Goa, Center for Marine Living Resources and Ecology (CMLRE), Kochi; and National Centre for Coastal Research (NCCR), Chennai as well as involving other national institutes.
  • To generate and regularly update information on Marine Living Resources and their relationship with the physical environment in the Indian Exclusive Economic Zone (EEZ)
  • To periodically monitor levels of sea water pollutants for health assessment of coastal waters of India, to develop shoreline change maps for assessment of coastal erosion due to natural and anthropogenic activities
  • To develop a wide range of state-of-the art ocean observation systems for acquisition of real-time data from the seas around India,
  • To generate and disseminate a suite of user-oriented ocean information, advisories, warnings, data and data products for the benefit of society
  • To develop high resolution models for ocean forecast and reanalysis system
  • To develop algorithms for validation of satellite data for coastal research and to monitor changes in the coastal research
  • Acquisition of 2 Coastal Research Vessels (CRVs) as replacement of 2 old CRVs for coastal pollution monitoring, testing of various underwater components and technology demonstration
  • To develop technologies to tap the marine bio resources and generating freshwater and energy from ocean
  • To carryout exploration of Polymetallic Nodules (MPN) from water depth of 5500m in site of 75000 allotted to India by United Nations in Central Indian Ocean Basin, to carryout investigations of gas hydrates
June 2024