Samajho’s Telegram Compilation: Part 4

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Telegram Compilation: Part 4

This is a compilation of various Articles / Solutions to MCQs that we regularly post on our Telegram Channel.
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  • Context:
    • There is an increase in the volume of contactless and other cash alternative payments across the country.
    • Contactless payment options are popularising as more users are concerned about the disease being spread through touch.
    • Contactless has accounted for 41% of face-to-face Visa transactions in the Asia-Pacific region.
    • More than 50 countries worldwide announced raising contactless limits on the cards due to the current pandemic and for greater consumer convenience.
  • Working
    • Contactless payment refers to methods that allow consumers to pay using debit and credit cards without actually making contact with others.
    • This is done using radio frequency identification (RFID) or near-field communication (NFC) technologies.
    • The most common methods include tapping the card on a point of sale (PoS) terminal. NFC-based systems in smartphones also qualify as contactless payment systems.
  • Challenges
    • Over 80% of India’s merchants have not digitized.
    • Creating an affordable solution that reaches merchants across the spectrum and accepting payments via already available modes.

‘Atmanirbhar Bharat Abhiyan'

  • About:
    • Recently, the Prime Minister has announced the ‘Atmanirbhar Bharat Abhiyan (or Self-reliant India Mission)’ with an economic stimulus package — worth Rs 20 lakh crores aimed towards achieving the mission.
    • The announced economic package is 10% of India’s Gross Domestic Product (GDP) in 2019-20.
    • The amount includes packages already announced at the beginning of the lockdown incorporating measures from the RBI and the payouts under the Pradhan Mantri Garib Kalyan Yojana.
    • The package is expected to focus on land, labour, liquidity, and laws.
  • Self-Reliant India Mission
    • The Self-Reliant India Mission aims towards cutting down import dependence by focussing on substitution while improving safety compliance and quality goods to gain global market share.
    • Self-Reliance neither signifies any exclusionary or isolationist strategies but involves the creation of a helping hand to the whole world.
    • The Mission focuses on the importance of promoting “local” products.

Detailed Coverage:


Ways and Means Advances


  • Context:
    • The Army plans to take civilians on a three- year ‘Tour of Duty’ (ToD) or ‘three-year short service’ on a trial basis to serve in the force as both officers and other ranks initially for a limited number of vacancies and then expanded later.
  • About:
    • The overall purpose of the ToD concept is ‘internship/temporary experience’
    • The proposal is meant to reduce the financial burden on Army and free funds for its modernisation
    • There will be no requirement of attractive severance packages, resettlement courses, professional encashment training leave, etc. for the ToD officers and other ranks.
    • The Army’s pay and pension bill has been increasing steeply over the years, accounting for 60% of its budget allocation.
    • This scheme is for those who do not want a full career in the Army but still want to put on the uniform.
    • Individuals opting for ToD would get a much higher salary than their peers in the corporate sector and would also have an edge after leaving the Service and going to the corporate sector.
    • The proposal suggests several measures to incentivize this scheme like a tax-free income for three years and a token lumpsum at the end of three years of about ₹5-6 lakh for officers.
    • The nation and the corporates are likely to benefit from a trained, disciplined, confident, diligent, and committed men and women who have completed the ToD.

Energy Transition Index: WEF

  • Context:
    • The index benchmarks 115 economies on the current performance of their energy systems across economic development and growth, environmental sustainability and energy security and access indicators, and their readiness for transition to secure, sustainable, affordable, and inclusive energy systems.
  • Indicators
    • Economic development and growth, environmental sustainability and energy security and access
  • Global Performance
    • Sweden has topped the Index for the third consecutive year and is followed by Switzerland and Finland in the top three.
    • France (8th) and the UK (7th) are the only G20 countries in the top ten.
    • Only 11 out of 115 countries have made steady improvements in ETI scores since 2015. Argentina, China, India, and Italy are among the major countries with consistent annual improvements.
    • In China (78th), problems of air pollution have resulted in policies to control emissions, electrify vehicles, and develop the world’s largest capacity for solar photovoltaic (SPV) and onshore wind power plants.
  • Overall Trend
    • The results for 2020 show that 75% of countries have improved their environmental sustainability.
    • It is a result of multifaceted, incremental approaches, including pricing carbon, retiring coal plants ahead of schedule, and redesigning electricity markets to integrate renewable energy sources.
    • Its study measuring readiness for the clean energy transition in 115 economies showed that 94 have made progress since 2015.
    • The greatest overall progress is observed among emerging economies.
  • India’s Ranking and Reasons
    • India has moved up two positions to rank 74th with improvements in all three dimensions of the energy triangle namely:
      •      Economic development and growth.
      •      Energy access and security.
      •      Environmental sustainability.
  • For India, gains have come from a government-mandated renewable energy expansion programme i.e. to add 275 GW by 2027.
  • India has also made significant strides in energy efficiency through bulk procurement of LED bulbs, smart meters and programs for labelling of appliances. Similar measures are being experimented to drive down the costs of electric vehicles (EVs).
  • It indicates a strong positive trajectory, driven by strong political commitment and an enabling policy environment.

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