Rajya Sabha Current Affairs - 2019

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Ministry of MSME sets up District-level Advisory Committee to monitor PMEGP

The Ministry of Micro, Small and Medium Enterprises (MSME) has established an Advisory Committee for each district of the country for monitoring the progress of Prime Minister’s Employment Generation Programme (PMEGP) with active role of Members of Parliament from the district.

What is Prime Minister’s Employment Generation Programme (PMEGP)?

Prime Minister’s Employment Generation Programme (PMEGP) is a credit linked subsidy programme launched by the Government of India by merging the two schemes namely Prime Minister’s Rojgar Yojana  (PMRY) and Rural Employment Generation Programme (REGP) for generation of employment opportunities through establishment of micro enterprises in rural as well as urban areas. PMEGP is a central sector scheme administered by the Ministry of Micro, Small and Medium Enterprises (MoMSME).

What are the objectives of PMEGP?

Objectives of PMEGP are:

  1. To generate employment opportunities in rural as well as urban areas of the country through setting up of new self employment ventures/projects/micro enterprises.
  2. To bring together widely dispersed traditional artisans/ rural and urban unemployed youth and give them self employment opportunities to the extent possible, at their place.
  3. To provide continuous and sustainable employment to a large segment of traditional and prospective artisans and rural and urban unemployed youth in the country, so as to help arrest migration of rural youth to urban areas.
  4. To increase the wage earning capacity of artisans and contribute to increase in the growth rate of rural and urban employment.
What will be the constitution of the District Level Advisory Committee who will monitor PMEGP?

The District Level Advisory Committee will comprise around 30 members chaired by the Member of Parliament (Lok Sabha) elected from the District having the largest part of the district under his/ her Parliamentary constituency. The Committee would provide overall guidance and suggestions for the implementation of the PMEGP programme. The committee would liaise and coordinate with Khadi and Village Industry Commission (KVIC) which is the nodal agency for the scheme, State Government and other agencies including Banks for effective mobilization of young entrepreneurs under PMEGP. It would also ensure that the scheme is implemented in line with its guidelines.

Other member of the Committee:

  • Members of Parliament of Lok Sabha having part constituency in the district would be co-chairperson and Member of Parliament of Rajya Sabha will be a member.
  • Members of State Legislative Assembly and Legislative Council, Chairperson of Zilla Panchayat, representatives of SC/ST, OBC, minority and women and one professional from social work/ social science, representatives of bank and financial institutions.

District Magistrate/ Collector will be its member-convener.

Rajya Sabha passes National Food Security Bill 2013

The National Food Security Bill 2013 has been passed in the Rajya Sabha.

What are the key features of the National Food Security Bill 2013?
  • Entitles 5 kg of rice, wheat and coarse cereals per month per person at 3, 2 and 1 Rupees respectively to around 67% of nation’s population.
  • With this Bill, India will join the select club of nations which guarantee food-grains to majority of its population.
    It will be the largest programme of its kind in the world which will cost government Rs. 130,000 crore.
  • To implement the bill a total of 62 million tonnes of food-grains will be required.
    It is being viewed as the first step towards universalization of Public Distribution System.
  • The Bill proposes to provide free meals to all the pregnant women as well as lactating mothers during the pregnancy till six months post delivery.
  • Maternity benefit of Rs. 6000 will also be given to pregnant women.
  • Children till the age of 14 years will also be given free meals.
  • The state will pay the food security allowance to the beneficiaries in the event of non-supply of the foodgrains.
  • The scheme will be linked to the Aadhar number that’s linked to a database that includes the biometric information of all card-holders.