Gist of Bare Necessities Index Notes | Study Gist of Rajya Sabha TV / RSTV (now Sansad TV) - UPSC

UPSC: Gist of Bare Necessities Index Notes | Study Gist of Rajya Sabha TV / RSTV (now Sansad TV) - UPSC

The document Gist of Bare Necessities Index Notes | Study Gist of Rajya Sabha TV / RSTV (now Sansad TV) - UPSC is a part of the UPSC Course Gist of Rajya Sabha TV / RSTV (now Sansad TV).
All you need of UPSC at this link: UPSC

The Big Picture: Bare Necessities Index
Context

Bare Necessities Index has been mentioned in the recently launched Economic Survey for 2020-21.

Background

  • Inequalities in access to bare necessities like drinking water, sanitation, hygiene and housing conditions continue to exist between urban and rural India despite “widespread” improvements in each of these aspects.
  • The BNI builds on the idea of Thalinomics in the Economic Survey for 2019-20, through which it had sought to examine the access to food in the country.

Summary of the Debate

About Bare Necessities Index (BNI)

  • The BNI summarises 26 indicators on five dimensions - water, sanitation, housing, micro-environment, and other facilities and has been created for all states for 2012 and 2018 using NSO data
  • The index classifies areas on three levels of access- high, medium, low to bare necessities
  • The Survey has underlined the need to focus on reducing variations in the access to bare necessities across states, between rural and urban areas, and between income groups. 
  • The “bare necessities” of housing, water, sanitation, electricity and clean cooking fuel are jointly consumed by all the members of a household. 
    • They touch the life of every member in the household. 
    • These are durable assets and deliver services to the household over long periods of time. 
  • Access to clean drinking water, safe sanitation and clean cooking fuel also have direct linkages with health of the members in the household. 
    • Access to these saves time for a household, which they can utilise in productive activities such as education and learning.

Key Findings

  • Compared to 2012, access to “the bare necessities” has improved across all States in the country in 2018. 
  • Access to bare necessities is the highest in the States such as Kerala, Punjab, Haryana and Gujarat while it is the lowest in Odisha, Jharkhand, West Bengal and Tripura
  • The improvements are widespread as they span each of the five dimensions viz., access to water, housing, sanitation, micro-environment and other facilities
    • Inter-State disparities in the access to “the bare necessities” have declined in 2018 when compared to 2012 across rural and urban areas
    • This is because the States where the level of access to “the bare necessities” was low in 2012 have gained relatively more between 2012 and 2018. 
  • Access to “the bare necessities” has improved disproportionately more for the poorest households when compared to the richest households across rural and urban areas. 
  • BNI in 2012 and 2018 with infant mortality and under-5 mortality rate in 2015-16 and 2019-20 respectively and find that the improved access to “the bare necessities” has led to improvements in health indicators. 
  • Improved access to “the bare necessities” correlates with future improvements in education indicators. The schemes, inter alia, Jal Jeevan mission, SBM-G, PMAY-G, may design appropriate strategy to reduce these gaps. 
Initiatives to Improve Access to The Bare Necessities
  • Swachh Bharat Mission-Rural and Urban: Its object was to attain Open Defecation Free (ODF) India by 2nd October, 2019 by providing access to toilet facilities to all rural households in the country.
  • Objective of SBM-Urban is to achieve 100 per cent Open Defecation Free (ODF) status and 100 per cent scientific processing of the Municipal Solid Waste (MSW) being generated in the country.
  • Pradhan Mantri Awaas Yojana (PMAY): PMAY intends to provide housing for all in urban and rural areas by 2022.
  • Jal Jeevan Mission (JJM): Goal of JJM is to provide functional tap water connection (FTWC) every rural household by 2024 and get assured supply of potable piped water at a service level of 55 litres per capita per day regularly on long-term basis by ensuring functionality of the tap water connections.
  • Sahaj Bijli Har Ghar Yojana – Saubhagya: It was launched to achieve universal household electrification by providing electricity connections to all willing un-electrified households in rural areas and all willing poor households in urban areas in the country, by March, 2019.
  • Pradhan Mantri Ujjwala Yojana (PMUY): It was launched to provide clean cooking fuel to poor households with a target to provide 8 crore deposit free LPG connection. 
Conclusion
BNI is a good way to ensure equal access to bare necessities across sectors, across states and across the country. One can expect from a budget that the allocation will be increased in the social sector schemes. There a need to have a special focus or a special attention on public health. Multiplicity of schemes has to be addressed at some point of time because there are over 250 schemes which are similar, so this needs to be integrated. We need a better synergy between the centre and the states and also the schemes need to be futuristic, keeping in mind that the idea of bare necessities have changed over the years and will change for the next generation as well.
The document Gist of Bare Necessities Index Notes | Study Gist of Rajya Sabha TV / RSTV (now Sansad TV) - UPSC is a part of the UPSC Course Gist of Rajya Sabha TV / RSTV (now Sansad TV).
All you need of UPSC at this link: UPSC

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