Blog

June 5th 2021 Current affairs Update

TOPIC: GS 3 Inclusive Growth and issues arising from it.

Two cheers

What is the news?

  • India’s push in the right direction in achieving Sustainable Development Goals (SDG)
  • It is related to clean energy, urban development and health has helped it improve its overall SDG score from 60 in 2019 to 66 in2021 according to NITI Aayog’s SDG India Index 2020­21.
  • Eradication of poverty and hunger, measures related to the availability of affordable, clean energy in particular, showed improvements across several States and Union Territories.
  • The campaign to improve the access of households to electricity and clean cooking fuel has been shown to be an important factor.
  • Index reveals that there has been a major decline in the areas of industry, innovation and infrastructure besides decent work and economic growth,
  • Again by the lockdowns imposed by the governments seeking to tackle the COVID­19 pandemic.

Causes of concern

  • Stark differences between the southern and western States on the one hand and the north­central and eastern States
  • The other in their performance on the SDGs, point to persisting socio-economic and governance disparities.
  • These left unaddressed will negative federal challenges and outcomes
  • Some are seen in the public health challenges during the second wave across some of the worse­off States.

Problems in Methodology

  • The Index has curiously made some methodological changes that render comparisons on some SDGs over previous years moot.
  • The SDG on inequality shows an improvement over 2019, but the indicators used to measure the score have changed.
  • The 2020­21 Index drops several economic indicators and gives greater weightage to social equality indicators
  • Includes representation of women and people from marginalised communities in legislatures and local governance institutions, and crimes against SC/ST communities.
  • By dropping the well­recognised Gini coefficient measure
  • The growth rate for household expenditure per capita among 40% of rural and urban populations instead, only the percentage of population in the lowest two wealth quintiles is used
  • The SDG score on inequality seems to have missed out on capturing the impact of the pandemic on wealth inequality.
  • This could be a significant miss as a UN assessment of the impact of COVID­19 had said that the South Asian region may see rising inequality.

Way forward

  • Methodological issues on measuring other SDGs have been flagged before but the lack of adequate measurement of economic inequality seems to be a missing .
  • Like in the first wave, the second wave, with more fatalities, has had similar outcomes on livelihoods and jobs.
  • While the better score for India in its attempt to achieve through addressing problems that prevail in the governance
  • Governments must work on addressing pressing issues such as increased inequality and economic despair.

Mains question

India betters score in the latest SDG Index, but methodological tinkering is cause for concern. Explain

Sources : https://www.thehindu.com/opinion/editorial/two-cheers/article34731230.ece

PRELIMS PUNCHERS

  1. Gini coefficient

The Gini coefficient  is a measure of the distribution of income across a population. A higher Gini index indicates greater inequality, with high-income individuals receiving much larger percentages of the total income of the population. Global inequality as measured by the Gini index increased over the 19th and 20th centuries, but has declined in more recent years.

Because of data and other limitations, the Gini index may overstate income inequality and can obscure important information about income distribution. The coefficient ranges from 0 (or 0%) to 1 (or 100%), with 0 representing perfect equality and 1 representing perfect inequality. Values over 1 are theoretically possible due to negative income or wealth. The Gini index is often represented graphically through the Lorenz curve, which shows income (or wealth) distribution by plotting the population percentile

Sources : https://www.thehindu.com/opinion/editorial/two-cheers/article34731230.ece

  1. PM-STIAC

The Prime Minister’s Science, Technology, and Innovation Advisory Council (PM-STIAC), is an overarching Council that facilitates the Principal Scientific Adviser’s Office to assess the status in specific science and technology domains, comprehend challenges in hand, formulate specific interventions, develop a futuristic roadmap and advise the Prime Minister accordingly. The Office of the Principal Scientific Adviser (PSA) to the Government of India coordinates to facilitate and ensure the implementation of significant interventions by concerned government departments, agencies, and ministries.

The PM-STIAC Secretariat is based at Invest India and provides support to the Office of the PSA on project management and monitoring of the aforesaid interventions and national missions.

Sources: https://www.thehindu.com/opinion/lead/saving-biodiversity-securing-earths-future/article34731266.ece

  1. The National Biodiversity Authority

It is a statutory autonomous body under the Ministry of Environment, Forests and climate change, Government of India established in 2003 to implement the provisions under the Biological Diversity Act, 2002, after India signed Convention on Biological Diversity (CBD) in 1992

The National Biodiversity Authority is mandated to regulate access to biological resources  or associated knowledge for research, bio-survey and bio-utilization, commercial utilization, obtaining Intellectual Property Rights, transfer of results of research and transfer of accessed biological resources. The details of application forms for Access and Benefit Sharing (ABS) of specific activities are given in the website of National Biodiversity Authority. It advises State Governments in identifying the areas of biodiversity importance biodiversity hotspots as heritage sites.

Sources: https://www.thehindu.com/opinion/lead/saving-biodiversity-securing-earths-future/article34731266.ece

 

  1. The Project 75I-class submarine

It is a follow-on of the Project 75 Kalvari-class submarine for the Indian Navy. Under this project, the Indian Navy intends to acquire six diesel-electric submarines, which will also feature advanced air-independent propulsion systems to enable them to stay submerged for longer duration and substantially increase their operational range. All six submarines are expected to be constructed in Indian shipyards

In 1997, Ministry of Defence approved a plan to acquire 24 submarines under Project 75. After the Kargil War in 1999, Cabinet Committee on Security approved a 30-year submarine building plan that called for two parallel production lines, each constructing six submarines. The older Project 75 was brought under the new plan, with the two production lines to be built under Project 75 and Project 75I using transfer of technology from different foreign manufacturers.

Sources : https://www.thehindu.com/news/national/defence-ministry-clears-deal-for-6-submarines/article34725695.ece

PRELIMS QUESTION

  1. Consider the following statement with reference to Gini coefficient
  2. It is a measure of the distribution of household expenditure across a population.
  3. It is often represented graphically through the Kuznets curve

Select the correct statement using code given below.

(a). 1only                                 (b) 2 only

(c). Both of them                 (d). None of the above

Answer : D

The Gini coefficient  is a measure of the distribution of income across a population. A higher Gini co efficient  indicates greater inequality, with high-income individuals receiving much larger percentages of the total income of the population. Global inequality as measured by the Gini index increased over the 19th and 20th centuries, but has declined in more recent years.

Because of data and other limitations, the Gini index may overstate income inequality and can obscure important information about income distribution. The coefficient ranges from 0 (or 0%) to 1 (or 100%), with 0 representing perfect equality and 1 representing perfect inequality. Values over 1 are theoretically possible due to negative income or wealth. The Gini index is often represented graphically through the Lorenz curve, which shows income (or wealth) distribution by plotting the population percentile

  1. Consider the following statement with reference to PM-STIAC
  2. The Office of the Principal Scientific Adviser to the Government of India coordinates to facilitate and ensure the implementation
  3. The PM-STIAC Secretariat is based at Make in India

Select the correct statement using code given below.

(a). 1only                                 (b) 2 only

(c). Both of them                 (d). None of the above

Answer : A

The Prime Minister’s Science, Technology, and Innovation Advisory Council (PM-STIAC), is an overarching Council that facilitates the Principal Scientific Adviser’s Office to assess the status in specific science and technology domains, comprehend challenges in hand, formulate specific interventions, develop a futuristic roadmap and advise the Prime Minister accordingly. The Office of the Principal Scientific Adviser (PSA) to the Government of India coordinates to facilitate and ensure the implementation of significant interventions by concerned government departments, agencies, and ministries.

The PM-STIAC Secretariat is based at Invest India and provides support to the Office of the PSA on project management and monitoring of the aforesaid interventions and national missions.

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