Government Schemes Current Affairs - 2020

Government launches National Mission on Government eMarketplace

Union Ministry of Commerce & Industry has launched National Mission on Government eMarketplace (GeM) for increasing awareness and accelerating use of GeM by major central Ministries, State Governments and their agencies. GeM provides online, end to end solution for procurement of commonly used goods and services for all Central Government Departments and State Governments. Public Sector Units and affiliated bodies

National Mission on GeM

The mission aims to promote inclusiveness, transparency and efficiency in public procurement and achieve cashless, contactless and paperless transaction. This will help to increase overall efficiency and lead to cost saving on government expenditure in procurement.

It will cover all central government departments, states and public sector undertakings in mission mode. It will create awareness about GeM, train buyers and sellers, get them registered in GeM and increase procurement through GeM. It will also promote inclusiveness by empowering various categories of sellers and service providers such as MSMEs, start-ups, domestic manufacturers, women entrepreneurs, and Self-Help Groups.

It will also highlight value addition via transparency and efficiency in public procurement, including corruption-free governance in sync with Central Government’s objective of ‘Minimum Government, Maximum Governance’.

Government eMarketplace (GeM)

It is an online marketplace to facilitate procurement of goods and services by various Ministries and agencies of the Government. The platform offers online, end to end solution for procurement of commonly used goods and services for all central government departments and state governments, public sector units and affiliated bodies. It aims to enhance transparency, efficiency and speed in public procurement of goods and services and eliminate corruption.  It was launched in August 2018 and so far it has crossed Rs 10,800 crore in terms of value and 6.96 lakh in terms of volume of transactions. The GeM platform has more than 1.35 lakh sellers, offering 4.43 lakh products and around 26,500 organisations as buyers.

Government extends Atal Pension Yojana indefinitely

Union Cabinet decided to indefinitely extended Atal Pension Scheme, which had lapsed in August 2018. It also has broadened its scope by keeping it open-ended. The extension was given by taking into consideration of mass participation.

New Provisions

To further incentivize people’s participation in the scheme, age criterion for participation has been revised. Earlier, people of age 18 to 60 years were entitled to enroll in this scheme. But now it has been relaxed further to 65 years, taking into consideration rise in average age-expectancy,

Henceforth the scheme will expand its focus to target individuals, instead of households. Moreover, all accounts opened after August 2018 will have accident insurance limit of Rs 2 lakh, double than earlier Rs 1 lakh limit. The overdraft facility of the scheme was also increased from Rs 5,000 to Rs 10,000.

Atal Pension Yojana (APY)

It is a social security scheme that aims to provide affordable universal access to essential social security protection to unorganized work force of country, which constitute more than 85% of the workforce. It had replaced earlier government-backed pension Swavalamban scheme targeted at the unorganised sector. It was launched in June 2015.

It is available to all citizens of India in age group of 18-40 years (making minimum period of contribution by subscriber is 20 years). There is no exit to scheme before maturity age. In case of death of subscriber, spouse of subscriber is entitled for same amount of pension till his or her death.