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PIB Summaries 30 March 2022

CONTENTS

  1. Bridging education learning gaps
  2. Improving the research ecosystem
  3. DIGI Locker
  4. Gender Budgeting System
  5. Improving Nutritional Levels of Population

Bridging education learning gaps


  • With a view of addressing the issues related to gaps and/or loss of learning among students, during and after the lockdown, National Council of Education Research & Training (NCERT) has prepared ‘Alternative Academic Calendar’ which is a Week-wise learning plan for grades 1 to 12.
  • NCERT has also developed bridge course modules for out-of-school children including various activities which are helpful for bridging the learning gaps and the States/UTs have also been requested to prepare and implement School Readiness Module/Bridge Course in classrooms for initial one or two months for each grade. I
  • n addition the Department vide letter dated 4th May, 2021 has shared a comprehensive Covid Action Plan with States/UTs and other stakeholders for mitigating the loss of learning.

In addition, a comprehensive initiative called PM eVIDYA has been initiated which unifies all efforts related to digital/online/on-air education to enable multi-mode access to education. The initiative includes the following components:

  • DIKSHA the nation’s digital infrastructure for providing quality e-content for school education in states/UTs:  and QR coded Energized Textbooks for all grades (one nation, one digital platform)
  • One earmarked SwayamPrabha TV channel per class from 1 to 12 (one class, one channel)
  • Extensive use of Radio, Community radio and CBSE Podcast- Shiksha Vani
  • Special e-content for visually and hearing impaired developed on Digitally Accessible Information System (DAISY) and in sign language on NIOS website/ YouTube
  • Where the digital facility (mobile device/ DTH television) is not available, Ministry of Education has taken many initiatives like Community Radio Stations and a podcast called Shiksha Vani of CBSE, Textbooks, worksheet supplied to residence of learners, Handbook on 21st Century Skillsand community/mohalla classes.
  • Innovation Funds under Samagra Shiksha have been used to set up mobile school, virtual studios, virtual class rooms in schools, Continuous Learning Plan (CLP), pre-loaded tablets etc. in various states and UTs in remote/rural areas where online classes are difficult.
  • A National Mission on Foundational Literacy and Numeracy called “National Initiative for Proficiency in Reading with Understanding and Numeracy (NIPUN Bharat)” has been launched by the Ministry of Education (MoE) under the aegis of Samagra Shiksha.
  • The National Mission lays down priorities and actionable agendas for States/UTs to achieve the goal of proficiency in foundational literacy and numeracy for every child by grade 3.
  • Vidya Pravesh module has been launched for class I students. This is a play based 3 months school preparation program for children entering in Class I.
  • SWAYAM is a programme initiated by Government of India and designed to achieve the three cardinal principles of Education Policy viz., access, equity and quality. The objective of this effort is to take the best teaching learning resources to all, including the most disadvantaged and to bridge the digital divide for students.
  • The Ministry has, undertaken an initiative, named ‘MANODARPAN’ covering a wide range of activities to provide psychosocial support to students, teachers and families for Mental Health and Emotional Wellbeing during the COVID outbreak and beyond.
  • Further, in order to provide continuous professional development opportunities to the teachers at the elementary and secondary level, this Department launched the NISHTHA online training programme using DIKSHA platform.

Improving the Research Ecosystem


  • The Government has sanctioned establishment of Research Parks in IITs at- Madras, Bombay, Kharagpur, Kanpur, Delhi, Guwahati, Hyderabad, Gandhinagar and IISc Bangalore to augment the research ecosystem in the country to enable the students to pursue their R&D interests in India, through innovative research.
  • Incubation Centres (ICs) at educational institutions seek to nurture technology and knowledge based ventures through their start-up phase by providing the necessary support to help entrepreneurs survive in the competitive market and reach a stage where they can scale-up their ventures further. 
  • Various schemes such as Uchchatar Avishkar Yojana (UAY), Impacting Research Innovation and Technology (IMPRINT), Impactful Policy Research in Social Science (IMPRESS), Scheme for Trans-Disciplinary Research for India’s Developing Economy (STRIDE), Scheme for promotion of Research and Academic Collaboration (SPARC), National Initiative for Design Innovation (NIDI), Scheme for Transformational and Advanced Research in Sciences (STARS) etc. are also implemented in the Ministry of Education for promotion of research ecosystem of country’s Higher Education Institutes.
  • Under the Prime Minister’s Research Fellowship scheme, attractive fellowship is offered to selected students to pursue their Ph. D. in Indian Universities/ Institutions.
  • This Ministry also implements Global Initiative for Academic Network (GIAN) which seeks to tap the talent pool of scientists and entrepreneurs from abroad, including those of Indian origin, to augment the country’s existing academic resources.

DIGI Locker


  • DigiLocker aims to empower citizens with all their lifelong documents in a single digital wallet and is in the process of adding all government-issued citizen-centric proof documents.
  • DigiLocker already issues digital copies of Ration Cards for 15 States and Marriage Certificates for 17 States. Additionally, DigiLocker is in discussion with Passport Seva for the issuance of Passport.
  • The integration of the ministries/ departments solely depends upon the administrative approvals issued by the respective ministries/ departments.
  • Around 494 Crore digital documents have been made available in DigiLocker till date from various Government, Semi-Govt, Private and autonomous departments/ institutions

Gender Budgeting System


  • The Government is committed for promoting gender equality in all sectors and at all levels of governance.
  • Financing for gender equality is central to mitigate gender inequalities and Gender Budgeting is a critical strategy in this endeavour.
  • The Government has adopted Gender Budgeting as a strategy to incorporate a gender perspective in all stages of policy making.
  • In this regard, the Ministry has focused on (i) establishing institutional mechanisms and processes to undertake Gender Budgeting in all Ministries/Departments at the national and State/UT level and (ii) strengthening capacities and building expertise across levels of governance on undertaking Gender Budgeting.
  • The Government publishes a Gender Budget Statement (Statement13) annually along with the Union Budget. The Gender Budget Statement is a reporting mechanism for Ministries/Departments to review their programmes from a gender perspective and present information on allocations for women and girls

Improving Nutritional Levels of Population


  • Malnutrition is a multi-faceted problem. The important determinants are inadequate food, level of poverty leading to low purchasing power, poor socio- economic status of women, female illiteracy, high rate of population growth and low access of population to health education, safe drinking water, environmental, sanitation, hygiene and other social services.
  • Key reasons for malnutrition setting in early life are early marriage, faulty and sub-optimal infant and young child feeding practices, childhood illnesses and low birth weight. The nutritional status of the population is outcome of complex and inter-related set of factors and requires convergent efforts.
  • Government is implementing POSHAN Abhiyaan, Pradhan Mantri Matru Vandana Yojana, Anganwadi Services and Scheme for Adolescent Girls under the Umbrella Integrated Child Development Services Scheme (ICDS) as direct targeted interventions to address the problem of malnutrition in the country.
  • Mission Poshan 2.0, an integrated nutrition support programme has been announced for all States/UTs. It seeks to strengthen nutritional content, delivery, outreach and outcomes with focus on developing practices that nurture health, wellness and immunity to disease and malnutrition.
  • POSHAN Scheme is a centrally sponsored scheme implemented in partnership with the States and UTs. The overall responsibilities for providing cooked and nutritious mid-day meal to the eligible children lies with the State Governments and Union Territory Administrations in accordance with the Guidelines laid down by the Central Government.
  • Children in the age group of 6 months to 3 years, age group 3 to 6 years and pregnant women and lactating mothers are provided Take Home Ration or Hot Cooked Meals under Anganwadi Services Scheme. States and UTs determine their recipes according to local needs and as per nutritional norms specified under Schedule II of the National Food Security Act, 2013.

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