Education Current Affairs

Swasth Bachche, Swasth Bharat Programme launched

The Union Ministry of Human Resource Development (HRD) launched ‘Swasth Bachche, Swasth Bharat’ Programme. It was launched by Union HRD Minister Prakash Javdekar in Kochi, Kerala

The programme is an initiative of Kendriya Vidyalaya Sangathan (KVS) to prepare a physical Health and Fitness Profile Card for more than 12 lakhs of Kendriya Vidyalaya students.

About Swasth Bachche, Swasth Bharat programme

The programme aims to provide a comprehensive and inclusive report card for children covering all age groups and children of different abilities. Its main objective is to make students, teachers and parents aware about the importance of good health and fitness and encouraging 60 minutes of play each day.

The programme also intends to imbibe values of Olympics and Paralympics amongst students. The objectives are bringing back the childhood amongst children, make recreational games and physical activity an integral part of learning process, motivating potentially outstanding performers in various games and sports of excellence, using technology for analytics and data capture and giving access to schools, parents and teachers.

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Cabinet approves creation non-lapsable Madhyamik and Uchchtar Shiksha Kosh

The Union Cabinet has approved creation of a single corpus fund non-lapsable known as Madhyamik and Uchchtar Shiksha Kosh (MUSK).

Under it, all proceeds of secondary and higher education cess will be credited and utilised for the government’s schemes in education sector.

Madhyamik and Uchchtar Shiksha Kosh (MUSK)

The funds arising from MUSK will be utilised for schemes in education sector, which will be available for benefit of students of secondary and higher education all over the country. It will be administered and maintained by the Union Ministry of Human Resource Development.

The MUSK will be maintained as a Reserve Fund in the non-interest bearing section of the Public Accounts of India. It will be operationalised as per the present arrangements under Prarambhik Shiksha Kosh (PSK) wherein the proceeds of cess are used for Sarv Shiksha Abhiyan (SSA) and Mid-Day Meal (MDM) Schemes.

The expenditure on ongoing schemes of the HRD Ministry will be initially incurred from the gross budgetary support (GBS) in any financial year and the expenditure will be financed from MUSK only after the GBS is exhausted.

Background

During the 10th Plan, an education cess of 2% was levied on all central taxes from 2004 to make available additional resources for basic education/elementary education to augment the existing budgetary resources. Later in 2007, additional cess of 1% on central taxes (called Secondary and Higher Education Cess) was levied through Finance Act, 2007 to give fillip for universalizing access to secondary education and expanding the reach of the higher education sector. In February 2016, HRD Ministry had sought the approval of the Department of Economic Affairs for creation of non-lapsable fund in the Public Account called MUSK.

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