La Excellence IAS Academy

India Eyes $1 Billion In Banana Exports In Next Five Years

Syllabus: GS-III;

Subject: Economic Development

Topic: Food processing and related industries in India.

Context: With successfully exporting a trial shipment of fresh bananas to the Netherlands through sea route, India is now aiming to increase exports of this fruit to USD one billion in the next five years, an official said.

  • Most fruit exports from India rely on air transportation due to lower volumes and varying ripening periods.
  • India is actively developing sea protocols for fresh fruits like bananas, mangoes, pomegranates, and jackfruit to boost exports via ocean routes.
  • Banana export destinations for India are expanding beyond the Middle East, with potential markets in the USA, Russia, Japan, Germany, China, the Netherlands, the UK, and France.
  • Major banana-producing states in India include Andhra Pradesh, Maharashtra, Karnataka, Tamil Nadu, and Uttar Pradesh.
  • The Agricultural and Processed Food Products Export Development Authority (APEDA), along with stakeholders, has developed protocols for bananas.
  • Protocols cover aspects like understanding sea voyage time, scientifically managing ripening, identifying optimal harvest times, and providing farmer training.
  • Despite being the world’s largest banana producer, India’s global export share is currently only 1%, though it contributes to 26.5% of the world’s banana production.


What is APEDA?

  • The Agricultural and Processed Food Products Export Development Authority (APEDA) was established by the Government of India under the Agricultural and Processed Food Products Export Development Authority Act, 1985. It functions under the Ministry of Commerce and Industry.
  • APEDA is mandated with the responsibility of export promotion and development of the scheduled products.

Source: The Hindu

Grow Local, Eat Local: Bengal Farmers Hold A Celebration Of Indigenous Seeds.

Syllabus: GS-III.

Subject: Economic Development.

Topic: Cropping patterns in various parts of the country.

Context: Farmers organized an indigenous seed festival and pledged to conserve different varieties of native seeds.


  • Hundreds of farmers exchange native paddy, pulses, and vegetable varieties.
  • Organized by ActionAid, Kajla Janakalyan Samiti, and Purba Medinipur Kisan Swaraj Samity.
  • Part of ActionAid’s climate justice campaign, promoting sustainable farming.
  • Aims to build discourse on climate change, organic farming, and seed conservation.
  • Plan to establish grassroots seed banks across the state.
  • Farmers emphasize the need to regain control over traditional seeds for safe food.
  • Festival addresses environmental damage and vulnerability caused by modern agriculture.

Climate Resilience Agriculture:

  • Climate-resilient agriculture (CRA) is an approach to farming that helps agricultural systems withstand organized the increasing challenges(droughts, flash floods) posed by climate change.
  • preparing the crop to face the harsher and more unpredictable weather patterns that are becoming the new normal.

 It focuses on

  1. Adaptation.
  2. Sustainable Resource Management.
  3. Encouraging biodiversity-livestock.
  4. Knowledge and Innovation- adapting new technologies.

Source: The Hindu

Hurriyat Chief’s Outfit An Unlawful Association: Centre

Syllabus: GS-III;

Subject: Security;

Topic: Role of external state and non-state actors in creating challenges to internal security

Context: The Union Home Ministry declared the Muslim League Jammu and  Kashmir (Masarat Alamfaction) an “unlawful association” under the anti­terror Unlawful Activities (Prevention) Act (UAPA) for five years.


  • Masarat Alam, chief of Hurriyat Conference, has been in detention for 20 years and is accused of anti-national and secessionist activities.
  • Home Ministry states the organization supports terrorist activities and aims to establish Islamic rule in Jammu and Kashmir.
  • The outfit is known for anti-India, pro-Pakistan propaganda, seeking freedom for Jammu and Kashmir from India.
  • Allegations include raising funds for unlawful activities, including terrorism, and disrespecting constitutional authority through sustained stone-pelting on security forces.
  • The Central government believes immediate action is necessary to curb activities threatening territorial integrity and sovereignty.
  • The unlawful association status is declared under Section 3 (3) of the UAPA for a five-year period.


UAPA, Unlawful Activities (Prevention) Act 1967:

UAPA, passed in 1967 was aimed for the prevention of unlawful activities and associations in India.


  • Defines Unlawful activity as any action taken by an individual or association intended to disrupt the territorial integrity and sovereignty of India.
  • Empowers central government to declare any activity or association as unlawful by an official gazette.
  • Highest punishment: death penalty and life imprisonment.
  • Applicability: Both Indians and foreigners and activities inside and outside India.

2019 amendment to the act provided for

  1. Declaring individuals as terrorists, which was previously not possible.
  2. Empowers DG of NIA to approve for the seizure of the property.
  3. Empowers the officers of the NIA, of the rank of Inspector or above, to investigate cases of terrorism in addition to those conducted by the DSP or ACP or above rank officer in the state.

Source: The Hindu

Centre Hikes Copra MSP By ₹250-300 Hike Per Quintal For 2024 Season

Syllabus: GS-III

Subject: Economic Development

Topic: Minimum Support Price

Context: The Cabinet Committee on Economic Affairs (CCEA) in India has announced a significant increase in the minimum support price (MSP) for copra, a key coconut product.


  • The MSP for milling copra has been increased by ₹300 per quintal compared to the previous season, while the MSP for ball copra reflecting a ₹250 per quintal hike.
  • Despite global declines in copra prices, the government, aims to ensure that the MSP remains at least 50% higher than the production cost. The elevated MSP aims not only to ensure better returns for coconut growers but also to motivate farmers to expand copra production, meeting the rising demand for coconut products both domestically and internationally.
  • Milling copra is primarily used for oil extraction, while ball copra serves as a dry fruit and is used for religious purposes.
  • Major copra-producing states include Kerala, Tamil Nadu, and Karnataka.
  • The National Agricultural Cooperative Marketing Federation of India Ltd. (NAFED) and the National Cooperative Consumers’ Federation (NCCF) act as Central Nodal Agencies (CNAs) for the procurement of copra and de-husked coconut under the Price Support Scheme (PSS).


Minimum Support Price(MSP):

  • It is a support price announced by government to insure agricultural producers (farmers) against any sharp fall in farm prices.
  • At the beginning of the sowing season, both kharif (June-July) and Rabi(Oct-Nov)
  • Recommendation of Commission for Agricultural Costs and Prices (CACP) under Ministry of Agriculture and Family Welfare. Ultimate decision taken by CCEA.
  • MSP is announced for 22 crops (14 kharif and 6 rabi crops and two other commercial crops) besides a Fair and Remunerative price for sugarcane.
  • National Commission on farmers headed by M.S Swaminathan recommended MSP of at least 50% above the production cost of the crop.

Banks’ Gross NPAs Drop To 3.2% In Sept-End, Helped By Retail Loans

Syllabus: GS-III

Subject: Indian Economy

Topic: Issues Relating to Planning, Mobilization of Resources

Context: Write-offs, recoveries contributed to reduction in NPAs: RBI data

Highlights of the Report:

  • Positive trends in GNPA reduction are attributed to write-offs, recoveries, and improved industrial sector asset quality.
  • Agricultural sector has the highest GNPA ratio, while retail loans have the lowest.
  • Industrial sector’s GNPA ratio improved to 4.2% by September 2023.
  • Slippage ratio (new NPAs as a share of standard advances) moderated in 2022-23 and H1 FY24.
  • SCBs’ consolidated balance sheet expanded by 12.2% in 2022-23, driven by credit to retail and services.
  • Gross bank credit accelerated at 15%, led by the personal loans and services sector.


  • Unsecured loans pose higher credit risk, comprising 25.5% of total credit as of March 2023.
  • NBFCs recorded a 16.1% gross advances growth in 2022-23, primarily fueled by unsecured loans.
  • Emphasis on robust governance and risk management to safeguard banking and payment systems from cyber threats.


  • High interconnectedness between banks and NBFCs necessitates attention to minimize contagion risk.
  • NBFCs urged to diversify funding sources, reducing reliance on bank funding.
  • Banks advised to regularly evaluate exposure to NBFCs and assess individual NBFCs’ exposure to multiple banks.


What are NPA’s?

  • A NPA is a loan or advance for which the principal or interest payment remained overdue for a period of 90 days.
  • The RBI has defined NPAs as assets that stop generating income for banks.
  • Banks are required to make their NPAs numbers public and to the RBI as well from time to time.

Source: Indian Express

PM-KISAN Beneficiaries Dwindling, Govt Adds 34 Lakhs In Special Drive

Syllabus: GS-III

Subject: Economy & Growth;

Topic: Issues related to direct and indirect farm subsidies.

Context: Beneficiaries dropped from 10.47 crore to 8.12 crore.

PM-Kisan Decline:

  • Reasons for Decline are attributed to new provisions like mandatory land seeding and Aadhaar linking.
  • Launched Viksit Bharat Sankalp Yatra to address the decline.
  • Uttar Pradesh leads with 8.50 lakh, followed by Rajasthan, Manipur, Jharkhand, and Maharashtra.
  • Government aims to surpass 8.75 crore beneficiaries by January 2024 (Before the Lok Sabha Elections).



  • Launched on February 24, 2019, PM-KISAN is a central sector scheme facilitating direct financial assistance to land-holding farmers through direct benefit transfer (DBT).
  • Provide income support to eligible land-holding farmers and their families.
  • The Ministry of Agriculture and Farmers Welfare oversees implementation.
  • Financial assistance of Rs. 6000 per annum per family. Paid in three equal instalments of Rs. 2000 every four months.
  • Initially for Small and Marginal Farmers’ (SMF) families with landholding up to 2 hectares. Later expanded to include all farmer families, irrespective of landholding size.

Conclusion: PM-KISAN plays a crucial role in addressing the financial requirements of farmers and promoting sustainable agricultural practices.

Source: Indian Express