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My Notes 28-April-2017 28-04-2017

Dear students

Please follow my notes and my video date 28-4-2017


Article : Learning to run twice as fast

Context : FRBM review committee targets and challenges to achieve the same.

Notes: FRBM review committee has set a target of 60% for debt to GDP ratio to be achieved by 2023. It consists of 40% for the central Government and 20% fro the state Government. Here the challenge is for the state Government to achieve targets. Reasons are

  1. Interest rate growth differential : negative interest growth differential will benefit centre more than states.
  2. Marked deterioration in fiscal health of the states : loan waivers, subsidies are increasing revenue expenditure of the states over capital expenditure.
  3. Many exogenous factors are involved in fiscal correction of the states rather than financial prudence –debt restructuring scheme of 12th finance commission, Central relief packages, increased transfers to the states are the reasons for financial correction rather than fiscal discipline.

The way forward

  1. Prudent use of powers defined in the constitution of India art 293(3) : as per this it is mandatory for the states to take consent of the centre to borrow from market if they have any liabilities to it. Today centre has allowed for the states to directly borrow from bilateral partners for various infrastructure projects. Combined market borrowings of the states are increasing. There shall be symmetry between cost of borrowing and financial governance. It mean fiscally healthy states should be enabled to attract higher investments at lower costs. Risk variation across the states need to be well reflected.
  2. Bringing in transparency in accounting practices. : many of the states are practicing off budget liabilities. They need to be integrated in to accounting to understand the scale of the problem.
  3. Emphasising quality of expenditure : it is worsening across the states. Emphasis shall be on capital expenditure. Expenditure quality shall be a condition for fresh borrowings.
  4. Ensuring fiscal discipline in determining financial transfers to the states: 11,12,13 finance commission have recommended for fiscal discipline as a criteria for determination of transfers by finance commission. .


To remember : interest rate growth differential

Quality of sub national public expenditure

Debt restructuring scheme of 12th finance commission.

Off budget liabilities

Fiscal discipline

Carry home points : states have a challenge in achieving a debt ceiling of 20% by 2023.




Article : we need to question ourselves

Context: racial slur

Notes :India need to acknowledge the problem of deep rooted color consciousness in its mass psyche. It pervades attitudes, influences behaviour of many Indians. Continuous denial can not arouse solutions.

To remember : Denial of a problem evades a solution.

Carry home points : Indians Need to be made sensitive to African Americans.


Article: In four doses

Context: malaria vaccine

Notes: injectable Malaria vaccine –RTS,S(Mosquirix) is being tested in phase II trial for its clinical efficacy and safety. The vaccine is given in four doses. It is effective against plasmodium falciparum. Major challenges here are

  1. Dose intervals are too long. Efficacy is high only after administering fourth dose.
  2. Efficacy is only 30% in children who received all the four doses. There is a significant drop when children did not receive four doses. It mean that malaria vaccine can only offer less than optimum protection and so existing malaria intervention measures have to be used in conjunction to reduce the incidence of the disease.

To remember: malaria vaccine –Mosquirix, RTS,S

Carry home points: The first malaria vaccine is cleared for pilot tests, raising hopes about wider use.


Article: What’s cricket

Context: changed revenue sharing model of ICC

Notes:  Earlier revenue sharing model of ICC has envisaged a big three governance and it given primacy to BCCI, Austrian and England boards on cricket governance. It has created obstacles for the expansion of cricket, though BCCI got financially benefitted.

The present change in revenue model is expected to strengthen cricket globally.

To remember: Cricket is an Indian game accidentally discovered by British. ( for Interview)

Carry home points: fairness shall exist in every transaction to make it sustainable.



Article : Are we a nation of pseudo secular

Carry home points:

  1. 1.       In India, secularism, pseudo secular and communalism are more political constructs to guide the behaviour of electorate.
  2. 2.       Minority communalism and majority communalism – two are inseparable.
  3. 3.       Given the experience of modern polity, it was thought that pre modern identities of caste, region, religion will recede. Converse has happened in India.


  1. Left : word pseudo secularism is a right wing construct in India. It is an indirect assault on secularistic credentials of Indian national movement. Indian national movement can be described as a secular nationalistic movement. Unlike this, Hindu mahasabha has preached for hindu rashtra  and was rejected by the people in first general election which was take as a referendum on whether India shall be a secular or communal.
  2. Right : secularism is a word related to Europe to construct relations between church and west and it can not be applied to India. Hinduism has no such structural and role differentiation between religious and political sphere. It is more associated with a geography and is based on polytheism and is plural. It  has positive attributes that along with liberal democracy.

Article: India’s population story

Notes: As per NFHS-4 India is showing declining fertility rates. Inspite of this , population is expected to rise. The major reason is Youth bulge. Another important feature is most of the youth bulge is happening in poor states. It means there will be young north and old south. Investing in young people will be a win win situation for North and south.

So, to control population there shall be emphasis on

  1. Increasing access to health care and use of quality family planning services.
  2. Education and empowerment are the basis for population stabilisation. National health policy 2017 states the same.

Article : A New chapter for the disabled

Notes: Supreme Court of India has observed employment is key factor in empowerment and inclusion of people with disabilities. Many of the disabled persons are put of jobs due to social and physical barriers that prevent them from joining workforce.

Rights of persons with disabilities act provides for access to justice, access to employment both in private sector and public sector. It is a welcome step.



  1. Trump flips of NAFTA – President Trump stated that he will be renegotiating NAFTA rather than pulling out of it.
  2. Utilising PF for  medical emergencies made easy : EPFO simplified the rules and self declaration is sufficient to access finances for medical emergencies.
  3. No Barrier to naming Lokpal : Supreme Court of India held that Lokpal and Lokayukta act is an eminently workable legislation even in the absence of recognized Leader of opposition.
  4. Judicial performance index  proposed : The  NITI  Aayog  has  proposed  the  introduction  of  a judicial  performance  index to  reduce delays  and the outsourcing  of  non-core  functions  of  the  police  to  private agencies  or  other  government  departments,  in  a  bid to  fix justice system that is  in  an ‘dire need of reform.It has  also  mooted changes  in  criminal  justice and  procedural  laws,  a  repeal  of  all  irrelevant  legislation  by  March  2019  and  reforms in land ownership laws — which  account  for  67%  of litigants in civil suits.
  5. Vinod Khanna, actor passes away.
  6. Bhutan out of vehicle pact : Bhutan pulled out of motor vehicular agreement exercise  among BBIN. It is due to fears of vehicular pollution and environmental degradation.
  7. Direct tax base to increase in 3 years : NITI AAyog









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