The Hindu Newspaper Analysis for UPSC
The Hindu Newspaper Analysis 1 February 2023
Budget and Constitutional Provisions
- According to Article 112 of the Indian Constitution, the Union Budget of a year is referred to as the Annual Financial Statement (AFS).
- It is a statement of the estimated receipts and expenditure of the Government in a Financial Year (which begins on 1st April of the current year and ends on 31st March of the following year).
- Overall, the Budget contains:
- Estimates of revenue and capital receipts,
- Ways and means to raise the revenue,
- Estimates of expenditure,
- Details of the actual receipts and expenditure of the closing financial year and the reasons for any deficit or surplus in that year, and
- The economic and financial policy of the coming year, i.e., taxation proposals, prospects of revenue, spending programme and introduction of new schemes/projects.
- In Parliament, the Budget goes through six stages:
- Presentation of Budget.
- General discussion.
- Scrutiny by Departmental Committees.
- Voting on Demands for Grants.
- Passing an Appropriation Bill.
- Passing of Finance Bill.
- The Budget Division of the Department of Economic Affairs in the Ministry of Finance is the nodal body responsible for preparing the Budget.
- The first Budget of Independent India was presented in 1947.
- the government is faced with the dilemma of accelerating growth by increasing public investment while containing the fiscal deficit.
- Considering the challenges of increasing infrastructure spending while continuing with fiscal consolidation, it has been a fine balancing act on the part of the Finance Minister.
- The Reserve Bank of India has estimated the multiplier effect of capital expenditure at 1.2 — and that should help revive the sagging investment climate.
- The fiscal adjustment is proposed to be achieved by mainly containing revenue expenditure, which will improve the quality of public spending if it happens. The budgeted increase in revenue expenditures for 2023-24 is just 1.2% higher than the revised estimate for the current year. There is a significant compression in subsidies.
- If budget making is a complex task, interpreting the Union Budget can be hazardous given the amount of fine print that one has to pore over.
- Terming it the “first Budget in Amrit Kaal”, Ms. Sitharaman sounded the poll bugle by emphasising the ruling dispensation’s achievements since 2014, when Prime Minister Narendra Modi first assumed office.
- PM VIKAS or Pradhan Mantri Vishwakarma Kaushal Samman, for instance, would for the first time offer traditional artisans and craftspeople, or Vishwakarmas, a package of assistance aimed at helping them improve the quality, scale and reach of their products, she said. Specifics, including a financial outlay and the likely mechanics of implementation, were, however, not spelt out. Similarly, a ‘Mangrove Initiative for Shoreline Habitats & Tangible Incomes’ or ‘MISHTI’, aimed at undertaking mangrove plantation along the coastline and on salt pan lands leaves the funding to a “convergence between MGNREGS and a compensatory afforestation fund”.
- The 2023 Budget did not have any big welfare announcements, which are usually expected from a government’s last full Budget before it faces national elections, and especially when there is a general economic slowdown that has particularly affected the poor. Rather, it reiterates the strategic vision of this government in which both economic recovery and job creation rest on increased capital expenditure (capex) by the government, and welfare spending is not a priority.
- Along with the immediate impact that the low investments in these areas have on the lives of people, it must also be recognised that expenditure on these different social sector initiatives contribute in a large way to improving the lives of people in the long term as well as to economic revival.
- Spending on MGNREGA or the food subsidy or pensions can revive demand. Providing public services in health and education improves human development outcomes, increases productivity, and creates employment opportunities. To what extent capex contributes to job creation, especially for wage workers, needs to be assessed.
- The fiscal deficit ratio is to come down from 6.4% in FY23 to 5.9% in FY24, which means we’re on the path towards a fiscal deficit target of 4.5% of GDP by 2025-26.
- However, global headwinds will continue to weigh in. A third of the global economy is expected to slip into recession in calendar year 2023, as per the International Monetary Fund. This may affect manufacturing and other related sectors and impact revenue collections.
- The second is the question of infrastructure and capex. The government believes that the best way to sustain India’s growth, create more jobs and boost consumption is through high-multiplier capex.
Q) Sariska Tiger Reserve, recently seen in the news, lies in which state?
- Madhya Pradesh
- Arunachal Pradesh
- Uttar Pradesh
हाल ही में खबरों में रहा सरिस्का टाइगर रिजर्व किस राज्य में स्थित है?
- मध्य प्रदेश
- अरुणाचल प्रदेश
- उत्तर प्रदेश
About Sariska Tiger Reserve (STR):
- Location: It is located in the Aravalli hills in the Alwar district of Rajasthan state.
- This area was a hunting preserve of the erstwhile Alwar state.
- It was declared as a wildlife reserve in 1955 and then a Tiger Reserve in 1978 under Project Tiger.
- It is the first reserve in the world which successfully relocated tigers.
- Sariska is also famous for old temples, palaces and lakes such as Pandu Pol, Bhangarh Fort, Ajaibgarh, Pratapgarh, Siliserh Lake and Jai Samand Lake.
- Topography: Grasslands, dry deciduous forests, cliffs, and rocky landscapes.
- Flora: salar, kadaya , dhak , gol , ber , Banyan , gugal , bamboo , kair , adusta etc
- Fauna: Bengal tigers, leopard, jungle cat, Indian jackal, chital, chinkara, four-horned antelope, Indian peafowl, grey partridge, Indian peafowl, Indian eagle-owl etc.
Q) Justice Rohini commission, recently seen in the news, is related to which of the following?
- International arbitration
- Cryptocurrency regulations
- Prison reforms
- Sub-categorisation of other backward classes (OBCs)
हाल ही में समाचारों में रहा न्यायमूर्ति रोहिणी आयोग निम्नलिखित में से किससे संबंधित है?
- अंतर्राष्ट्रीय मध्यस्थता
- क्रिप्टोक्यूरेंसी नियम
- जेल सुधार
- अन्य पिछड़ा वर्ग (ओबीसी) का उप–वर्गीकरण
About Rohini Commission:
- The commission was set up by the President under Article 340 of the Indian Constitution on October 2, 2017.
- It is headed by former Delhi High Court judge, Justice G. Rohini (retd).
- Mandate: To examine the issues related to the sub-categorisation of Other Backward Classes.
- Terms of References:
- to examine the extent of inequitable distribution of benefits of reservation among the castes or communities included in the broad category of Other Backward Classes, with reference to such classes included in the Central List;
- to work out the mechanism, criteria, norms and parameters in a scientific approach for sub-categorisation within such Other Backward Classes;
- to take up the exercise of identifying the respective castes or communities or sub-castes or synonyms in the Central List of Other Backward Classes and classifying them into their respective sub-categories;
Q) With reference to the Finance Commission, consider the following statements:
- Finance Commission is constituted every year by the President under article 280 of the Constitution.
- Recommendations of the Finance Commission are binding on the government.
Which of the above statements is/are Not correct?
- 1 only
- 2 only
- Both 1 and 2
- Neither 1 nor 2
वित्त आयोग के संदर्भ में निम्नलिखित कथनों पर विचार कीजिये:
- संविधान के अनुच्छेद 280 के तहत हर साल राष्ट्रपति द्वारा वित्त आयोग का गठन किया जाता है।
- वित्त आयोग की सिफारिशें सरकार के लिए बाध्यकारी होती हैं।
उपरोक्त कथनों में से कौन-सा/से सही नहीं है/हैं?
- केवल 1
- केवल 2
- 1 और 2 दोनों
- न तो 1 और न ही 2
About Finance Commission:
- What is it? It is constitutional body for giving recommendations on distribution of tax revenues between the Union and the States and amongst the States themselves.
- Who constitutes? The Finance Commission is constituted by the President under article 280 of the Constitution.
- It is constituted at the end of every fifth year or earlier, as the deemed necessary by the President.
- Composition: It consists of a Chairman and four other members appointed by the President.
- Tenure of members: Every member will be in office for the time period as specified in the order of the President and is eligible for reappointment.
- Recommendations of the Finance Commission are not binding on the government.
Q) Shumang Leela, was recently seen in the news is:
- A tribal language
- A Theatre dance
- An Invasive species
- None of the above
शुमंग लीला, हाल ही में समाचारों में देखी गई थी:
- एक आदिवासी भाषा
- एक रंगमंच नृत्य
- एक आक्रामक प्रजाति
- उपरोक्त में से कोई नहीं
A traditional style of theatre from Manipur has entertained and informed audiences for centuries.
- The meaning of this theatre form is “courtyard performance”, which is performed in Manipur.
- In this, the roles of women are all played by men, called Nupi Shabis.
- In the case of women’s theatre groups, the roles of men are played by women.
- The female roles are taken up by transgender actors.
- The tradition is believed to be descended from Lai Haraoba, a ritual of the Meitei community of Manipur.
- The plays provide a vehicle for educating the public about social, political, and economic issues.
- Types – Shumang Leela is of two types
- Nupa Shumang Leela – Performed only by men.
- Nupi Shumang Leela – Performed only by women.
Q) Perseverance rover, recently seen in the news, is a Mars mission of which of the following space agencies?
- European Space Agency
- Canadian Space Agency
परसेवेरेंस रोवर, जो हाल ही में खबरों में रहा, निम्नलिखित में से किस अंतरिक्ष एजेंसी का मंगल मिशन है?
- यूरोपीय अंतरिक्ष एजेंसी
- कैनेडियन स्पेस एजेंसी
About Perseverance rover:
- It is robotic explorer to land on Mars as part of NASA’s ongoing Mars 2020 Mission.
- Main Job: Seek signs of ancient life and collect samples of rock and regolith (broken rock and soil) for possible return to Earth.
- The rover will collect samples of rock and soil, encase them in tubes, and leave them on the planet’s surface to be returned to Earth at a future date.
- Launch: It was launched on July 30, 2020 from Cape Canaveral, Florida.
- Landing: Successfully landed on the surface of Mar’s Jezero Crater on Feb. 18, 2021.
- It is about 3 metres long, 2.7 metres wide, and 2.2 metres tall.
- It is about the size of a car, but weighs only about 1,025 kilograms with all instruments on board.
- Power source: Multi-Mission Radioisotope Thermoelectric Generator (MMRTG). Converts heat from the radioactive decay of plutonium into electricity.
Mains Practice Question:
Q) “Investment in infrastructure is essential for more rapid and inclusive economic growth.” Discuss in the light of India’s experience. (250 words) (2021)
“अधिक तीव्र और समावेशी आर्थिक विकास के लिए बुनियादी ढांचे में निवेश आवश्यक है।” भारत के अनुभव के प्रकाश में चर्चा कीजिए। (250 शब्द) (2021)
- Infrastructure investments are a form of “real assets” which contain physical assets one sees in everyday life like bridges, roads, highways, sewage systems or energy. Such a type of asset is quite vital in a country’s development. Often, investors invest in infrastructure as it is non-cyclical and it offers stable and predictable free cash flows.
Benefits of investment in infrastructure:
- Stable and Steady Cash Flows: The potential for steady cash flows is one of the main attractive features of investment in infrastructure.
- Non-Cyclical: While the small Italian restaurant at the corner of the street may go bankrupt during a long economic recession, that same risk does not apply to infrastructure assets.
- Low Variable Costs: Infrastructure comes with extremely small marginal costs per use which are completely negligible.
Role of infrastructure in rapid and inclusive economic growth:
- Creation of Jobs: Infrastructure development such as road construction, real estate, railway construction, etc. is labour-intensive resulting in increase in employment opportunities in formal and informal sectors and, thus, propelling domestic demand.
- Farmer Income: Investment in infrastructure would play a crucial role in ensuring doubling of farmers’ income through emphasis on increased irrigation infrastructure and storage, processing and marketing infrastructure.
- Health and Well-Being: Infrastructure enhancement of superior healthcare facilities, electronic health records and better equipped health infrastructure at primary levels (Telemedicine).
- The success of the infrastructure expansion plan would depend on other stakeholders of the pipeline playing their due role. These include State governments and their public sector enterprises and the private sector. Besides, there shall be proper implementation of holistic reforms in the banking sector.
Mains Practice Question:
Q) What is the importance of growing millets for India. Discuss. (150 words)
भारत के लिए बाजरा उगाने का क्या महत्व है? चर्चा करना। (150 शब्द)