Daily Current Affairs for UPSC Civil Services Exam – 16 February 2021

In Today’s News:

  1. Liberalization of Geo-spatial data.
  2. National Food Security Mission – Initiatives progress.

1. Liberalization of Geo-Spatial Data

News Summary

The Government has announced liberalized guidelines for geo-spatial data. Giving details of the liberalized guidelines at a media briefing in New Delhi, the Union Minister for Science & Technology, Earth Sciences, and Health & Family Welfare, Dr. Harsh Vardhan said that by liberalizing the geo-spatial guidelines, the government has taken a historic decision that will lead to a One Lakh Crore Rupees Geo-Spatial economy.

Mini Insights

Mains GS2 – Governance

Benefits of Liberalization of Geo-Spatial data:

(Note: The following points were said by the Hon’ble Union Minister)

  • The next generation of technologies will use hyper-resolution maps.
  • Availability of comprehensive, highly accurate, granular, and constantly updated representation of Geospatial Data will significantly benefit diverse sectors of the economy and will significantly boost innovation in the country, and greatly enhance the preparedness of the country for emergency response. 
  • The availability of data and modern mapping technologies to Indian companies is also crucial for achieving the vision of AtmaNirbharBharat and a five trillion-dollar economy.
  • For Indian entities, there would be complete deregulation with no prior approvals, security clearances, licenses, etc. for the acquisition and production of geospatial data and geospatial data services including maps.
  • This is one more distinct example of the removal of some of the colonial legacies that India was still grappling with and added that deregulation of Map-making is historic in the sense that Geo-Map is now going to be recognized as an instrument for development rather than only a tool for securing the country.
  • The decision is an extension of a series of visionary reforms undertaken in the Space sector.
  • New guidelines will be stimulating and empowering the INDIAN industry and Surveying Agencies without diluting security concerns.
  • Atmanirbharta in Geospatial products and solutions will be a one lakh crore business by 2030 plus economic impact through development.

Click here to view the courtesy official PIB release and click here to view the final revised guidelines.

2. National Food Security Mission – Initiatives progress

News Summary

Initiatives taken by the Government of India to increase the production and improve the productivity of food crops under the National Food Security Mission were released in the official PIB press release.

Prelims GS – Governance

  • National Food Security Mission (NFSM) was launched in 2007-08 to increase the production of rice, wheat, and pulses through area expansion and productivity enhancement; restoring soil fertility and productivity; creating employment opportunities; and enhancing the farm-level economy.
  • Coarse cereals were included from 2014-15 under NFSM.
  • The Mission met with an overwhelming success and achieved the targeted additional production of rice, wheat, and pulses. The Mission continued during the 12th Five Year Plan with new targets of additional production of food grains of 25 million tonnes of food grains comprising of 10 million tonnes rice, 8 million tonnes of wheat, 4 million tonnes of pulses, and 3 million tonnes of coarse cereals by the end of 12th Five Year Plan.
  • NFSM presently comprises of the sub-components viz., NFSM-Rice, NFSM-Wheat, NFSM-Pulses, NFSM-Coarse Cereals, NFSM-NFSM-Nutri-Cereals, and NFSM-Commercial Crops.
  • Currently, NFSM is being implemented in identified districts of 28 States & 2 Union Territories (UTs) viz. Jammu & Kashmir (J&K) and Ladakh in the country.
  • Under the Mission, Seed distribution of HYVs, farm machinery/resources conservation machinery/tools, efficient water application tools, plant protection, nutrient management, cropping system based trainings to the farmers, etc. are provided.
  • From the year, 2020-21, primary processing units/small storage bins/flexibility interventions have been added as per local requirements with the aim of increasing the income of the farmers.
  • To support to achieve the objective of “harkhetkopani” & “Per Drop More Crop”, 274600 pump sets, 126967 sprinklers, and around 764 lakh meters of water carrying pipes were distributed amongst the farmers under NFSM from 2014-15 to 2019-2020.
  • To educate farmers about the newer improved crop production and protection technologies in real-time, 60677 cropping system based training for capacity building of farmers were conducted from 2014-15 to 2019-2020 and this benefitted around 18 lakh of farmers.



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