IAS Gyan

Daily News Analysis


30th May, 2020


Awful silence

Development on LAC:

- No official explanation on the development on border. But, sources indicate that number of Chinese soldiers, increased aggression by the Chinese and number of points of conflict indicates strategised action by Chinese commanders.

- Continuous ongoing talks between both the countries show that the conflict is still ongoing.

- A full de-escalation requires soldiers going back to their normal LAC patrols and Chinese soldiers going back to their previous positions.

US Interventions:

- Senior US official first held china of being an aggressor on several fronts.

- Later, Donald trump recommended to mediate between India and China.

- India has made it clear that it will not accept Mr. Trump’s offer and has denied his claim that he spoke to Prime Minister Modi on the issue.

Chinese motives:

1. To deflect attention from the ongoing corona virus pandemic and alleged role of china in spreading it.

2. To deter India from undertaking the infrastructural push for roads and bridges and make bridges to connect to the Karakoram pass.

3. Make India aware about its geographical vulnerabilities as India is increasing its presence in Indo-Pacific region.

- Government first clarify the seriousness of the situation along the border of LAC.

Way Forward:

- End the current stand off

- Enter into serious talk of LAC demarcation

- Update the border management protocols, as India is also building infrastructure along the border.

- The government must also investigate how a big build-up of Chinese soldiers was not acted upon earlier.

Reference: https://www.thehindu.com/todays-paper/tp-opinion/awful-silence/article31706651.ece


Belated, but welcome

Court role in Migrant crisis:

- Recently, court passed a welcome judgement with clearly defining the responsibilities of the central and state government in dealing with migrants.

- The matter had visited court 7-8 weeks before, but court had relied on the version of executive.

- Court accepted that most of the migrant crisis is result of fake news that lockdown will continue for months.

- Court had only advised the police to deal with migrants sympathetically and media to portray the continuous development of migrant crisis.

Criticism of court approach:

-  Abdication of responsibility.

- It let executive manage the unprecedented crisis but did not consider itself as protector of fundamental rights.

- Retired judge compared it to ADM Jabalpur case during emergency era, where judiciary worked as per the whims of executive.

Way forward for court:

- Court must continuously monitor the government responses.

- Can provide guidelines for effective coordination among the states.

- It may establish a mechanism to deal with the humanitarian and economic fallout of the crisis.

- Court must always play the role of protector and keep a check on abuse of power by executive.

Reference: https://www.thehindu.com/todays-paper/tp-opinion/belated-but-welcome/article31706652.ece


Time has come for complete overhaul of obsolete legislation regulating migrant labour in India

Trends of Migration in India:

- According to Census 2011, there were 454 million migrants in India — doubling over the 1991-2011 period.

- Female migration is accelerating at the double rate of male migration, a significant part of it being for marriage.

- The percentage share of people migrating for work and business has actually declined.

- The share of urban-to-urban migrants has risen over the years, indicating that inter-urban mobility is a growing phenomenon.

- Further, the proportion of short-term migrants is much lower than long-term migrants.

- Economic Survey indicated that migration within India continued to increase manifold and on average, migration within states is around four times that across states.

- Short term migrants are mainly engaged in construction activities while long term is engaged in business activity.

- Stoppage of interstate and intra state transport services brought havoc of migrant crisis.

- In India, language does not seem to matter in terms of migration. 

Government actions:

- The central government has permitted state governments to utilise the State Disaster Response Fund (SDRF) for setting up shelters for migrants and providing them food.

- The Centre has also released Rs 11,000 crores of its contribution in advance to all states on April 3 to augment the funds in their SDRF.

- The disbursal of the Revolving Fund (RF) to self-help groups was on-boarded on the PAiSA Portal in April 2020 on a pilot basis in Gujarat and is now being rolled out across all the states.

- States/UTs have now been advised to provide work to the migrant workers going back home.

- The government has allocated an additional Rs 40,000 crores under MGNREGA to provide work.

- Government is launching a scheme under PMJAY for the migrant labour/urban poor to provide ease of living at an affordable rent.

Way Forward for long lasting solutions to the Migrant issues:

- The 2017 report by the working group on migration constituted by Ministry of Housing and Urban Poverty Alleviation provides solutions.

1. Reorient the working of the Construction Workers Welfare Board (CWWB):

- The CWWB provides social security to migrant workers.

- But, the funds utilisation has been low at 21%.

- Many state government has provided onetime payment to migrants from this fund.

- Based on the records available with the CWWB of major states, where the influx of migrants is the maximum, the Centre can transfer a fixed monthly amount for the next three months.

2. Comprehensive database of Migrant workers:

- A comprehensive database of migrant workers needs to be prepared on a war footing to establish a system akin to JAM.

- The PMJDY can also be extensively leveraged to find out the remittance transfers from source to destination.

- One nation One card would be the first step towards extending benefits. It would provide for the food security.

- Later, states can also provide education, housing and health benefits based on these cards

- There is need to develop a basic social security framework for migrants.

- Migrants children must be included in annual Sarva Skisha Abhiyan.

- Interstate migrant workers act needs to be completely overhauled. We need a comprehensive migrant policy.

- Government can create a comprehensive database, drawing on the databases of Ayushman Bharat, PM-KISAN, PMJDY, PMUY and MUDRA for future social welfare initiatives.

About PAiSa Portal:

- This portal is a centralized electronic platform for processing interest subvention on bank loans to beneficiaries under Deendayal Antyodaya Yojana.

- Recently, government has released first instalment for SHG in Gujarat on pilot basis.

Reference: https://indianexpress.com/article/opinion/columns/migrant-crisis-supreme-court-india-lockdown-coronavirus-6433681/



GDP growth slows to a 11-year low of 4.2%, Q4 slumps to 3.1%



Government data:

- Economic growth slowed to an 11-year low of 4.2% in 2019-20.

- January- March quarter GDP stood at 3.1%, which was higher than 2.2% predicted by analysts.

- Agriculture and mining sector grew at the rate of 5.9% and 5.2% respectively.

- Public administration, defence and other services grew at 10.1%.

- Manufacturing contracted by 1.4%.

- NSSO had revised full year GDP growth rate at 5%, which came at 4.2%.

- Three legs of GDP: consumption, investment and exports have slumped.

- Centre’s gross tax revenues have contracted by 3.4% in 2019-20. This is unprecedented.

Deficits and expenditure

- Fiscal deficit has increased to 4.6% of GDP, well above the revised estimate of 3.8%.

- The effective revenue deficit was 2.36%

- Total receipts of the government were Rs. 17.5 lakh crores against the estimate of Rs. 19.31 lakh crores.

- Government’s total expenditure was Rs. 26.86 lakh crores, lower than the Rs. 26.98 lakh crores projected earlier.

Trends of the Data:

- It is now becoming clear that all through 2019-20 India’s growth rate was decelerating much faster than what was officially accepted at that time.

- Manufacturing posted contraction in 3 quarters while agricultural and allied sectors grew at good pace.

- Construction and manufacturing sectors are supposed to absorb millions of youth and people leaving agriculture.



Impact of the wrong estimates in GDP:

- The nominal GDP growth rate is the base of all fiscal calculations in the country. A sharp divergence in nominal GDP growth rate upsets all other calculations in the economy. 

- It shows that the government was not able to assess the magnitude of economic growth deceleration that was underway.

- It leads to inaccurate policy making because a government could end up making policies for an economy that does not actually exist on the ground.

Frequent revisions in GDP:


- It challenges the credibility of Indian GDP among the investors.

Core Sector Output:

- Core sector output contracted 38% in April 2020, compared with the same month in the previous year.

- Cement production declined by 86%; Steel production declined by 84%.

- Refinery output shrank by 24%; fertilisers and crude oil, declined in production of 4.5% and 6.4% respectively.

- Electricity generation dropped almost 23%. Natural gas production fell almost 20%, while coal production declined 15.5%, from a year earlier.

About GDP:

- It is the sum of private consumption, gross investment in the economy, government investment, government spending and net foreign trade (difference between exports and imports).

- The following equation is used to calculate the GDP: GDP = C + I + G + (X – M) or GDP = private consumption + gross investment + government investment + government spending + (exports – imports).

About NSO:

- The National Statistical Office (NSO) headed by a Director General is responsible for Conduct of large-scale sample surveys in diverse fields on All India basis. Primarily data are collected through nation-wide household surveys on various socio- economic subjects, Annual Survey of Industries (ASI), etc.

- Besides these surveys, NSO collects data on rural and urban prices and plays a significant role in the improvement of crop statistics through supervision of the area enumeration and crop estimation surveys of the State agencies.

About Core Industries:

- The data on production of eight core industries of India is published monthly by the Ministry of Commerce and Industry.

- The current base year for the index of the series is 2011-12=100.

- The eight core industries included are- Coal, Crude oil, Natural Gas, Petroleum refinery products, Fertilizer, Cement, Steel, and Electricity generation.

- These eight industries comprise 40.27% of the weight of the items included in the Index of Industrial Production.

Reference: https://www.thehindu.com/todays-paper/tp-business/fiscal-deficit-at-46-for-fy20-as-revenue-sags/article31706646.ece



Nascent Arabian Sea cyclone may delay monsoon

Uncertainty over monsoon:

- The uncertainty is primarily due to a prominent weather model that hints at the development of a cyclone in the Arabian Sea.

- The strength and trajectory of this weather system could, in the worst-case scenario, delay the monsoon’s progress.

- It could mean a few days delay if it is too strong.

- While such depressions are normal during the advent of monsoon and usually aid the monsoon’s advent and progress in India, a particularly strong storm can hinder the monsoon.

- Last year, cyclone Vayu that formed in the Arabian Sea stalled the monsoon after it entered Kerala on June 8.

Onset of Monsoon

- It refers to arrival of monsoon in India.

- It arrives on June 1 at the coast of Kerala.

Factors affecting onset of Monsoon:

- Formed depression in Bay of Bengal in the last days of Bengal.

- Formation of trough along the western coast of India, which attracts rain.

- Formation of low-pressure areas in Arabian coast, which also attracts the rainfall.

-Formation of cyclonic vortex, which is more closely marked than the usual cyclonic circulation off the Kerala coast and is associated with cloud mass.

- The cross-equatorial flow of winds is another factor, which is responsible for the onset of Monsoon.

Reference: https://www.thehindu.com/news/national/nascent-arabian-sea-cyclone-may-delay-monsoon/article31704147.ece


Prelims special:

D10 Club:

- Proposal of Britain to make a consortium of democratic countries to develop the 5G technology.

- Focus is to keep the Huawei outside of 5G rollout.

- D10 involves G7 nation along with Australia, South Korea and India.

Rozgar Setu:

- An initiative of the MP government to provide job opportunity for the incoming migrants.

Swamitva Yojana:

- Central government scheme to digitize the rural land records.

- Implemented by Ministry of Panchayati Raj.

- The scheme will ensure streamlined planning, revenue collection and provide clarity over property rights in rural areas.

- This will open up avenues for applying for loans from financial institutions by the owners.

- Disputes related to property would also be settled through the title deeds allotted through this scheme.


National Career Service Project:

- Government has initiated training program under national career service project.

-  Five Year Mission Mode Project

- It provides a wide array of employment and career related services to the citizens of India.

- It works towards bridging the gap between jobseekers and employers, candidates seeking training and career guidance, agencies providing training and career counselling.