NABARD Grade-A Exam : Notes on Economic & Social Issues (with focus on Rural India)


The upcoming important exams are NABARD grade A and grade B, in which there is a section of Economic & Social Issues (with focus on Rural India) wherein 40 questions will be there carrying 40 marks. So, for the same, it becomes really important to have an in-depth knowledge of the Indian Economy covering topics such as Inflation, Poverty Alleviation and Employment Generation, Industrial and Labour Policy, Social Structure in India etc. Further its imperative to be aware of the Programmes and Schemes taken up by the government to counter the issues arising. To help you with this, today, we are providing you with all necessary information related to the mentioned field which will help you to fetch some good marks. This is the Second part of the Study Note Series which would be covering Poverty Alleviation Programmes.


Integrated Rural Development Programme (IRDP)
It aims at providing self-employment to the rural poor through acquisition of productive assets or appropriate skills which would generate additional income on a sustained basis to enable them to cross the poverty line. 
Assistance is provided in the form of subsidy and bank credit. 
The target group consists largely of small and marginal farmers, agricultural labourers and rural artisans living below the poverty line.
IRDP is a Centrally Sponsored Scheme which is in operation in all the blocks of the country since 1980. Under this scheme, Central funds are allocated to States on the basis of proportion of rural poor in a State to the total rural poor in the country.

Training of Rural Youth for Self-Employment (TRYSEM)
The Scheme of TRYSEM, a facilitating component of IRDP, aims at providing basic technical and entrepreneurial skills to the rural poor in the age group of 18 to 35 years to enable them to take up income generating activities. 
The Eighth Plan emphasized the importance of a proper assessment of the training needs of the rural youth in relation to self and wage-employment opportunities, quality of training and group training.
With a view to strengthening this programme, several initiatives were taken in the Eighth Plan which includes: 
increase in the stipend and honorarium rates; emphasis on professionalised training through the established and recognised institutes like ITIs, Community Polytechnics, Krishi Vigyan Kendras etc., exploring the possibilities of setting up production groups from amongst TRYSEM trainees for undertaking ancillary activities like manufacture and assembly of modern items of production; utilisation of TRYSEM infrastructure funds for the strengthening of Nirmithi Kendras (Rural Building Centres) sponsored by HUDCO for training of youth under TRYSEM in the trades of low cost housing and the setting up of mini-ITIs at the block level to strengthen the training infrastructure for the rural youth.

Supply of Improved Toolkits to Rural Artisans (SITRA)
It was launched in July 1992, as a sub-scheme of IRDP in selected districts, this scheme has since been extended to all the districts of the country. 
Under the scheme, a variety of craftspersons, except weavers, tailors, needleworkers and beedi workers, are supplied with a kit of improved hand tools within a financial ceiling of Rs.2000, of which the artisans have to pay 10 percent and the remaining 90 percent is a subsidy from the Government of India. 
The supply of power-driven tools, subject to a ceiling of Rs.4500, is also permitted under this scheme. Beyond this, any additional finance required by the artisans can be provided through loans under IRDP. The rural artisans are trained under TRYSEM for which an age relaxation has been provided to them.

DEVELOPMENT OF WOMEN AND CHILDREN IN RURAL AREAS (DWCRA)
It aimed at strengthening the gender component of IRDP. 
It was started in the year 1982-83, on a pilot basis, in 50 districts and has now been extended to all the districts of the country.
DWCRA is directed at improving the living conditions of women and, thereby, of children through the provision of opportunities for self-employment and access to basic social services. 
The main strategy adopted under this programme is to facilitate access for poor women to employment, skill upgradation, training, credit and other support services so that the DWCRA women as a group can take up income generating activities for supplementing their incomes. 

Jawahar Rozgar Yojana (JRY)
It was launched as a Centrally Sponsored Schemes (CSS) on 1st April, 1989 by merging the National Rural Employment Programme (NREP) and the Rural Landless Employment Guarantee Programme (RLEGP). 
The objective is the generation of additional gainful employment for unemployed and underemployed persons, both men and women, in the rural areas through the creation of rural economic infrastructure, community and social assets with the aim of improving the quality of life of the rural poor.
The resources under this scheme are allocated to the States/UTs on the basis of proportion of rural poor in the States/UTs to the total rural poor in the country.
This programme is targeted at people living below the poverty line. Atleast 30 percent of the employment is to be provided to women under the Yojana. 

Employment Assurance Scheme (EAS)
The Employment Assurance Scheme was launched on 2nd October, 1993 in 1775 identified backward blocks situated in drought-prone, desert, tribal and hilly areas, in which the revamped public distribution system was in operation.
Subsequently, the scheme was extended to additional blocks which included the newly identified Drought Prone Area Programme (DPAP)/Desert Development Programme (DDP) blocks, Modified Area Development Approach (MADA) blocks having a larger concentration of tribals, and blocks in flood-prone areas of Uttar Pradesh, Bihar, Assam and Jammu and Kashmir. 
In addition, 722 non-EAS blocks previously covered under Second Stream of Jawahar Rozgar Yojana (JRY) were also brought under the EAS.
The main objective of the EAS is to provide about 100 days of assured casual manual employment during the lean agricultural season, at statutory minimum wages, to all persons above the age of 18 years and below 60 years who need and seek employment on economically productive and labour intensive social and community works.
EAS is a Centrally Sponsored Scheme. 
The scheme is demand-driven and therefore no fixed allocations are made for the districts/blocks. 

Million Wells Scheme (MWS)
Million Wells Scheme (MWS) was launched as a sub-scheme of the National Rural Employment Programme (NREP) and the Rural Landless Employment Guarantee Programme (RLEGP) during the year 1988-89. 
After the merger of the two programmes in April 1989 into the Jawahar Rozgar Yojana (JRY), the MWS continued as a sub-scheme of JRY till December 1995. The MWS was delinked from JRY and made into an independent scheme with effect from 1.1.1996.
The scheme was primarily intended to provide open irrigation wells, free of cost, to individual, poor, small and marginal farmers belonging to Scheduled Castes/Scheduled Tribes and freed bonded labourers with a 20 percent earmarking of JRY funds. 
Tubewells and borewells are not permitted under the Scheme.

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