Week IV April 2017 UPSC Notes | EduRev

UPSC : Week IV April 2017 UPSC Notes | EduRev

 Page 1


 
 
Abhimanu 
Weekly current affairs Series 
 
 
 
 
 
Week: IV, April 2017 
 
 
 
 
 
Abhimanu’s IAS Study Group 
Chandigarh 
 
Page 2


 
 
Abhimanu 
Weekly current affairs Series 
 
 
 
 
 
Week: IV, April 2017 
 
 
 
 
 
Abhimanu’s IAS Study Group 
Chandigarh 
 
 
 
 
NATIONAL ECONOMIC AFFAIRS 
Centre unveils new Agricultural Produce Market Committee Act 
? In order to give more freedom to farmers to sell their produce, the agriculture ministry has unveiled “The 
State/UT Agricultural Produce and Livestocks Marketing (promotion and facilitation) Act, 2017” which has 
defined each state/UT as a single unified market area. 
Important points of the new act: 
? Under the new act, each state or union territory has been defined as a single unified market area. The earlier 
APMC Model Act 2003 was not passed by all the states due to certain barriers. 
? The states have now been asked to modify their respective APMC acts and implement the new act to ensure 
uniform licence and single point levy of market fee.  
? The government aims to integrate 585 APMCs under one electronic platform and set up a wholesale market at 
every 80 km. 
? This will remove the concept of notified market or mandi area, enabling farmers to sell their produce to 
highest bidder. 
? At present, farmers can sell their produce at regulated APMC (Agriculture Produce Marketing Committee) 
mandis only. There are 6,746 such mandis and each one is located at a gap of 462 km. They are subjected to 
different kinds of fees. 
? Since agriculture is a state subject, only states can implement laws related to the farm sector. 
? The government's aim is to set up a wholesale market at every 80 km. 
? The new law will end the monopoly of APMC and allow more players to set up markets and create 
competition so that farmers can discover prices and sell their produce accordingly, 
? Even an individual keen to buy bulk agri-produce for a big event like marriage can take licence and buy the 
produce but not more than three times in six months. 
? The law seeks to set a separate authority to regulate all agri-markets including APMC and provide trading 
licences. 
? It caps market fee (including developmental and other charges) at not more than 1 per cent for fruit and 
vegetables, and two per cent for foodgrain. It caps commission agents' fee at not more than two per cent for 
non-perishables and four per cent for perishables. 
Pradhan Mantri Awas Yojana (Urban)  
? Ministry of Housing and Urban Poverty Alleviation has sanctioned 1,00,537 more houses for urban poor under 
Pradhan Mantri Awas Yojana (Urban) with an investment of Rs.4,200 cr taking the total investment so far 
approved to Rs.1,00,466 cr. 
? This is 307% more than the investment approved of Rs.32,713 cr during 2004-14 for affordable housing in 
urban areas. 
? Ministry has so far approved construction of 18,75,389 houses for Economically Weaker Sections under 
PMAY(Urban) in 2,151 cities and towns in 34 States/UTs as against 13.80 lakh houses sanctioned during 2004-
15 with an approved investment of Rs.32,009 cr. 
Page 3


 
 
Abhimanu 
Weekly current affairs Series 
 
 
 
 
 
Week: IV, April 2017 
 
 
 
 
 
Abhimanu’s IAS Study Group 
Chandigarh 
 
 
 
 
NATIONAL ECONOMIC AFFAIRS 
Centre unveils new Agricultural Produce Market Committee Act 
? In order to give more freedom to farmers to sell their produce, the agriculture ministry has unveiled “The 
State/UT Agricultural Produce and Livestocks Marketing (promotion and facilitation) Act, 2017” which has 
defined each state/UT as a single unified market area. 
Important points of the new act: 
? Under the new act, each state or union territory has been defined as a single unified market area. The earlier 
APMC Model Act 2003 was not passed by all the states due to certain barriers. 
? The states have now been asked to modify their respective APMC acts and implement the new act to ensure 
uniform licence and single point levy of market fee.  
? The government aims to integrate 585 APMCs under one electronic platform and set up a wholesale market at 
every 80 km. 
? This will remove the concept of notified market or mandi area, enabling farmers to sell their produce to 
highest bidder. 
? At present, farmers can sell their produce at regulated APMC (Agriculture Produce Marketing Committee) 
mandis only. There are 6,746 such mandis and each one is located at a gap of 462 km. They are subjected to 
different kinds of fees. 
? Since agriculture is a state subject, only states can implement laws related to the farm sector. 
? The government's aim is to set up a wholesale market at every 80 km. 
? The new law will end the monopoly of APMC and allow more players to set up markets and create 
competition so that farmers can discover prices and sell their produce accordingly, 
? Even an individual keen to buy bulk agri-produce for a big event like marriage can take licence and buy the 
produce but not more than three times in six months. 
? The law seeks to set a separate authority to regulate all agri-markets including APMC and provide trading 
licences. 
? It caps market fee (including developmental and other charges) at not more than 1 per cent for fruit and 
vegetables, and two per cent for foodgrain. It caps commission agents' fee at not more than two per cent for 
non-perishables and four per cent for perishables. 
Pradhan Mantri Awas Yojana (Urban)  
? Ministry of Housing and Urban Poverty Alleviation has sanctioned 1,00,537 more houses for urban poor under 
Pradhan Mantri Awas Yojana (Urban) with an investment of Rs.4,200 cr taking the total investment so far 
approved to Rs.1,00,466 cr. 
? This is 307% more than the investment approved of Rs.32,713 cr during 2004-14 for affordable housing in 
urban areas. 
? Ministry has so far approved construction of 18,75,389 houses for Economically Weaker Sections under 
PMAY(Urban) in 2,151 cities and towns in 34 States/UTs as against 13.80 lakh houses sanctioned during 2004-
15 with an approved investment of Rs.32,009 cr. 
 
 
? The total investment approved so far includes central assistance of Rs.29,409 cr, assistance from State 
Governments and beneficiary contribution. 
? With total houses sanctioned of 2,66,842, Madhya Pradesh has emerged the leader for the first time  in 
approvals under PMAY(Urban) with a total investment of Rs.18,283 cr.  
? Tamil Nadu is second with 2,52,532 houses with a total project cost of Rs.9,112 cr. 
About Pradhan Mantri Aawas Yojana (PMAY) 
? Pradhan Mantri Aawas Yojana is a new  Housing scheme launched by PM Narendra Modi on June 25 , 2015. 
? Main aim of PMYU is to build Atmost 2 crore Housing and ensure them  to build with in a time period of upto 7 
years i.e the estimated time of completion of this scheme is upto 2022 
People Targeted to Pradhan Mantri Aawas Yojana: 
? The main target of PMAY scheme are those people of urban area who belong to LIG (Lower income group) and 
EWS (Economically weaker section) segment.  
? All women in this country from all religion and all cast system. 
? All schedule Cast and Schedule Tribe (SC),(ST). 
Primary Features of Pradhan Mantri Aawa Yojana: 
? This scheme offered beneficiaries an interest subsidy at the rate of 6.5 per cent for a loan amount of up to Rs 
12 lakh with interest subvention of up to 4 per cent.  
? Two new middle income categories have been created under the Pradhan Mantri Awaas Yojana in urban 
areas. Loans of up to Rs 9 lakh taken in 2017, will receive interest subvention of 4 per cent. Loans of up to Rs 
12 lakh taken in 2017, will receive interest subvention of 3 per cent 
? Also, Loans of up to Rs 2 lakh taken in 2017, for new housing, or extension of housing in rural areas, will 
receive an interest subvention of 3 per cent.” 
? Women’s of this country India will come first while allotting the housing under PMAY. Simply what to get it 
from that female candidate will get preference while selecting  and submitting Form. 
? All Houses that will be made under this scheme will be made from eco friendly construction method. 
Eight Interesting Facts about India: Economic Survey 2016-17 
? Indians on The Move- New estimates based on railway passenger traffic data reveal annual work-related 
migration of about 9 million people, almost double what the 2011 Census suggests. 
? Biases in Perception- China’s credit rating were upgraded from A+ to AA- in December 2010 while India’s has 
remained unchanged at BBB-. From 2009 to 2015, China’s credit-to-GDP soared from about 142 percent to 
205 percent and its growth decelerated. The contrast with India’s indicators is striking 
? New Evidence on Weak Targeting of Social Programs- Welfare spending in India suffers from misallocation; 
the districts with the most poor are the ones that suffer from the greatest shortfall of funds in social 
programs. The districts accounting for the poorest 40% receive 29% of the total funding.Political Democracy 
but Fiscal Democracy? - India has 7 taxpayers for every 100 voters ranking us 13th amongst 18 of our 
democratic G-20 peers. India is far from being a full tax-paying democracy with about 5.5 per cent of the 
people who earn paying tax and only 15.5 per cent of the net national income being reported to the tax 
authorities. The tax to GDP ratio at 16.6%, as a result, is well below that of the emerging market economies of 
21 per cent and OECD average of 34 per cent. India is the only large economy with an income tax exemption 
threshold that is 2.5 times the average national per capita income. In most countries, including in emerging 
economies such as China, Brazil and Argentina, anyone earning more than half the average national income 
falls under the income tax bracket. India has increased the income tax exemption threshold on seven 
occasions, from ?40,000 to ?2.5 lakh in the last two decades. Contrast this with China, where the exemption 
threshold has just doubled from 10,000 yuan to roughly 20,000 yuan in the same period even though average 
incomes grew much faster in China than in India. If India lowers its income tax exemption to, say, ?1 lakh 
from the current ?2.5 lakh to be more in line with the rest of the world, nearly 1.5 crore more Indians will fall 
under the tax bracket. To be clear, such a move will not fetch any meaningful extra tax revenues for the 
government but will merely bring more people into the tax bracket. It is thus misleading and specious to 
Page 4


 
 
Abhimanu 
Weekly current affairs Series 
 
 
 
 
 
Week: IV, April 2017 
 
 
 
 
 
Abhimanu’s IAS Study Group 
Chandigarh 
 
 
 
 
NATIONAL ECONOMIC AFFAIRS 
Centre unveils new Agricultural Produce Market Committee Act 
? In order to give more freedom to farmers to sell their produce, the agriculture ministry has unveiled “The 
State/UT Agricultural Produce and Livestocks Marketing (promotion and facilitation) Act, 2017” which has 
defined each state/UT as a single unified market area. 
Important points of the new act: 
? Under the new act, each state or union territory has been defined as a single unified market area. The earlier 
APMC Model Act 2003 was not passed by all the states due to certain barriers. 
? The states have now been asked to modify their respective APMC acts and implement the new act to ensure 
uniform licence and single point levy of market fee.  
? The government aims to integrate 585 APMCs under one electronic platform and set up a wholesale market at 
every 80 km. 
? This will remove the concept of notified market or mandi area, enabling farmers to sell their produce to 
highest bidder. 
? At present, farmers can sell their produce at regulated APMC (Agriculture Produce Marketing Committee) 
mandis only. There are 6,746 such mandis and each one is located at a gap of 462 km. They are subjected to 
different kinds of fees. 
? Since agriculture is a state subject, only states can implement laws related to the farm sector. 
? The government's aim is to set up a wholesale market at every 80 km. 
? The new law will end the monopoly of APMC and allow more players to set up markets and create 
competition so that farmers can discover prices and sell their produce accordingly, 
? Even an individual keen to buy bulk agri-produce for a big event like marriage can take licence and buy the 
produce but not more than three times in six months. 
? The law seeks to set a separate authority to regulate all agri-markets including APMC and provide trading 
licences. 
? It caps market fee (including developmental and other charges) at not more than 1 per cent for fruit and 
vegetables, and two per cent for foodgrain. It caps commission agents' fee at not more than two per cent for 
non-perishables and four per cent for perishables. 
Pradhan Mantri Awas Yojana (Urban)  
? Ministry of Housing and Urban Poverty Alleviation has sanctioned 1,00,537 more houses for urban poor under 
Pradhan Mantri Awas Yojana (Urban) with an investment of Rs.4,200 cr taking the total investment so far 
approved to Rs.1,00,466 cr. 
? This is 307% more than the investment approved of Rs.32,713 cr during 2004-14 for affordable housing in 
urban areas. 
? Ministry has so far approved construction of 18,75,389 houses for Economically Weaker Sections under 
PMAY(Urban) in 2,151 cities and towns in 34 States/UTs as against 13.80 lakh houses sanctioned during 2004-
15 with an approved investment of Rs.32,009 cr. 
 
 
? The total investment approved so far includes central assistance of Rs.29,409 cr, assistance from State 
Governments and beneficiary contribution. 
? With total houses sanctioned of 2,66,842, Madhya Pradesh has emerged the leader for the first time  in 
approvals under PMAY(Urban) with a total investment of Rs.18,283 cr.  
? Tamil Nadu is second with 2,52,532 houses with a total project cost of Rs.9,112 cr. 
About Pradhan Mantri Aawas Yojana (PMAY) 
? Pradhan Mantri Aawas Yojana is a new  Housing scheme launched by PM Narendra Modi on June 25 , 2015. 
? Main aim of PMYU is to build Atmost 2 crore Housing and ensure them  to build with in a time period of upto 7 
years i.e the estimated time of completion of this scheme is upto 2022 
People Targeted to Pradhan Mantri Aawas Yojana: 
? The main target of PMAY scheme are those people of urban area who belong to LIG (Lower income group) and 
EWS (Economically weaker section) segment.  
? All women in this country from all religion and all cast system. 
? All schedule Cast and Schedule Tribe (SC),(ST). 
Primary Features of Pradhan Mantri Aawa Yojana: 
? This scheme offered beneficiaries an interest subsidy at the rate of 6.5 per cent for a loan amount of up to Rs 
12 lakh with interest subvention of up to 4 per cent.  
? Two new middle income categories have been created under the Pradhan Mantri Awaas Yojana in urban 
areas. Loans of up to Rs 9 lakh taken in 2017, will receive interest subvention of 4 per cent. Loans of up to Rs 
12 lakh taken in 2017, will receive interest subvention of 3 per cent 
? Also, Loans of up to Rs 2 lakh taken in 2017, for new housing, or extension of housing in rural areas, will 
receive an interest subvention of 3 per cent.” 
? Women’s of this country India will come first while allotting the housing under PMAY. Simply what to get it 
from that female candidate will get preference while selecting  and submitting Form. 
? All Houses that will be made under this scheme will be made from eco friendly construction method. 
Eight Interesting Facts about India: Economic Survey 2016-17 
? Indians on The Move- New estimates based on railway passenger traffic data reveal annual work-related 
migration of about 9 million people, almost double what the 2011 Census suggests. 
? Biases in Perception- China’s credit rating were upgraded from A+ to AA- in December 2010 while India’s has 
remained unchanged at BBB-. From 2009 to 2015, China’s credit-to-GDP soared from about 142 percent to 
205 percent and its growth decelerated. The contrast with India’s indicators is striking 
? New Evidence on Weak Targeting of Social Programs- Welfare spending in India suffers from misallocation; 
the districts with the most poor are the ones that suffer from the greatest shortfall of funds in social 
programs. The districts accounting for the poorest 40% receive 29% of the total funding.Political Democracy 
but Fiscal Democracy? - India has 7 taxpayers for every 100 voters ranking us 13th amongst 18 of our 
democratic G-20 peers. India is far from being a full tax-paying democracy with about 5.5 per cent of the 
people who earn paying tax and only 15.5 per cent of the net national income being reported to the tax 
authorities. The tax to GDP ratio at 16.6%, as a result, is well below that of the emerging market economies of 
21 per cent and OECD average of 34 per cent. India is the only large economy with an income tax exemption 
threshold that is 2.5 times the average national per capita income. In most countries, including in emerging 
economies such as China, Brazil and Argentina, anyone earning more than half the average national income 
falls under the income tax bracket. India has increased the income tax exemption threshold on seven 
occasions, from ?40,000 to ?2.5 lakh in the last two decades. Contrast this with China, where the exemption 
threshold has just doubled from 10,000 yuan to roughly 20,000 yuan in the same period even though average 
incomes grew much faster in China than in India. If India lowers its income tax exemption to, say, ?1 lakh 
from the current ?2.5 lakh to be more in line with the rest of the world, nearly 1.5 crore more Indians will fall 
under the tax bracket. To be clear, such a move will not fetch any meaningful extra tax revenues for the 
government but will merely bring more people into the tax bracket. It is thus misleading and specious to 
 
 
 
conclude that India’s small number of taxpayers is entirely a result of some genetic and cultural trait of 
dishonesty of Indian society at large. 
? India's Distinctive Demographic Dividend- India’s share of working age to non-working age population will 
peak later and at a lower level than that for other countries but last longer. The peak of the growth boost due 
to the demographic dividend is fast approaching, with peninsular states peaking soon and the hinterland 
states peaking much later. 
? India Trades More Than China and a Lot Within Itself- As of 2011, India’s openness - measured as the ratio of 
trade in goods and services to GDP has far overtaken China’s, a country famed for using trade as an engine of 
growth. India’s internal trade to GDP is also comparable to that of other large countries and very different 
from the caricature of a barrier-riddled economy. 
? Divergence within India, Big Time- Spatial dispersion in income is still rising in India in the last decade (2004-
14), unlike the rest of the world and even China. That is, despite more porous borders within India than 
between countries internationally, the forces of “convergence” have been elusive. 
? Property Tax Potential Unexploited- Evidence from satellite data indicates that Bengaluru and Jaipur collect 
only between 5% to 20% of their potential property taxes. 
Three Year Action Agenda 
? NITI Aayog has replaced planning commission in 2014. In 2016, Prime minister office decided to replace five 
year plans with 15 year vision document. This document would be complemented with a seven-year strategy 
starting 2017-18 to convert the vision document into implementable policy and action as part of the National 
Development Agenda and a three-year draft action plan. 
? Now, NITI aayog has released three-year draft action plan. 
Highlights of the draft: 
Three Year Revenue and Expenditure Framework: 
? A tentative medium-term expenditure framework (MTEF) for the Centre is proposed. Based on forecasts of 
revenue, it proposes sector-wise expenditure allocation for three years. 
? Proposes reduction of the fiscal deficit to 3% of the GDP by 2018-19, and the revenue deficit to 0.9% of the 
GDP by 2019-20. 
? The roadmap consisting of shifting additional revenues towards high priority sectors: health, education, 
agriculture, rural development, defence, railways, roads and other categories of capital expenditure. 
Agriculture: Doubling Farmers’ Incomes by 2022 
? Reform the Agricultural Produce Marketing to ensure that farmers receive remunerative prices. 
? Raise productivity through enhanced irrigation, faster seed replacement and precision agriculture. 
? Shift to high value commodities: horticulture, animal husbandry, fisheries.  
? A separate detailed roadmap issued by Member, Professor Ramesh Chand  
Industry and Services: Job Creation 
? Create Coastal Employment Zones to boost exports and generate high-productivity jobs. 
? Enhance labour-market flexibility through reforming key laws 
? Address the high and rising share of Non-Performing Assets (NPAs) in India’s banks through supporting the 
auction of larger assets to private asset reconstruction companies (ARCs), and strengthening the State Bank 
of India-led ARC. 
Urban Development 
? Need to bring down land prices to make housing affordable through increased supply of urban land 
? Reform the Rent Control Act along the lines of Model Tenancy Act; 
? Initiate titles of urban property 
? Promote dormitory housing 
Page 5


 
 
Abhimanu 
Weekly current affairs Series 
 
 
 
 
 
Week: IV, April 2017 
 
 
 
 
 
Abhimanu’s IAS Study Group 
Chandigarh 
 
 
 
 
NATIONAL ECONOMIC AFFAIRS 
Centre unveils new Agricultural Produce Market Committee Act 
? In order to give more freedom to farmers to sell their produce, the agriculture ministry has unveiled “The 
State/UT Agricultural Produce and Livestocks Marketing (promotion and facilitation) Act, 2017” which has 
defined each state/UT as a single unified market area. 
Important points of the new act: 
? Under the new act, each state or union territory has been defined as a single unified market area. The earlier 
APMC Model Act 2003 was not passed by all the states due to certain barriers. 
? The states have now been asked to modify their respective APMC acts and implement the new act to ensure 
uniform licence and single point levy of market fee.  
? The government aims to integrate 585 APMCs under one electronic platform and set up a wholesale market at 
every 80 km. 
? This will remove the concept of notified market or mandi area, enabling farmers to sell their produce to 
highest bidder. 
? At present, farmers can sell their produce at regulated APMC (Agriculture Produce Marketing Committee) 
mandis only. There are 6,746 such mandis and each one is located at a gap of 462 km. They are subjected to 
different kinds of fees. 
? Since agriculture is a state subject, only states can implement laws related to the farm sector. 
? The government's aim is to set up a wholesale market at every 80 km. 
? The new law will end the monopoly of APMC and allow more players to set up markets and create 
competition so that farmers can discover prices and sell their produce accordingly, 
? Even an individual keen to buy bulk agri-produce for a big event like marriage can take licence and buy the 
produce but not more than three times in six months. 
? The law seeks to set a separate authority to regulate all agri-markets including APMC and provide trading 
licences. 
? It caps market fee (including developmental and other charges) at not more than 1 per cent for fruit and 
vegetables, and two per cent for foodgrain. It caps commission agents' fee at not more than two per cent for 
non-perishables and four per cent for perishables. 
Pradhan Mantri Awas Yojana (Urban)  
? Ministry of Housing and Urban Poverty Alleviation has sanctioned 1,00,537 more houses for urban poor under 
Pradhan Mantri Awas Yojana (Urban) with an investment of Rs.4,200 cr taking the total investment so far 
approved to Rs.1,00,466 cr. 
? This is 307% more than the investment approved of Rs.32,713 cr during 2004-14 for affordable housing in 
urban areas. 
? Ministry has so far approved construction of 18,75,389 houses for Economically Weaker Sections under 
PMAY(Urban) in 2,151 cities and towns in 34 States/UTs as against 13.80 lakh houses sanctioned during 2004-
15 with an approved investment of Rs.32,009 cr. 
 
 
? The total investment approved so far includes central assistance of Rs.29,409 cr, assistance from State 
Governments and beneficiary contribution. 
? With total houses sanctioned of 2,66,842, Madhya Pradesh has emerged the leader for the first time  in 
approvals under PMAY(Urban) with a total investment of Rs.18,283 cr.  
? Tamil Nadu is second with 2,52,532 houses with a total project cost of Rs.9,112 cr. 
About Pradhan Mantri Aawas Yojana (PMAY) 
? Pradhan Mantri Aawas Yojana is a new  Housing scheme launched by PM Narendra Modi on June 25 , 2015. 
? Main aim of PMYU is to build Atmost 2 crore Housing and ensure them  to build with in a time period of upto 7 
years i.e the estimated time of completion of this scheme is upto 2022 
People Targeted to Pradhan Mantri Aawas Yojana: 
? The main target of PMAY scheme are those people of urban area who belong to LIG (Lower income group) and 
EWS (Economically weaker section) segment.  
? All women in this country from all religion and all cast system. 
? All schedule Cast and Schedule Tribe (SC),(ST). 
Primary Features of Pradhan Mantri Aawa Yojana: 
? This scheme offered beneficiaries an interest subsidy at the rate of 6.5 per cent for a loan amount of up to Rs 
12 lakh with interest subvention of up to 4 per cent.  
? Two new middle income categories have been created under the Pradhan Mantri Awaas Yojana in urban 
areas. Loans of up to Rs 9 lakh taken in 2017, will receive interest subvention of 4 per cent. Loans of up to Rs 
12 lakh taken in 2017, will receive interest subvention of 3 per cent 
? Also, Loans of up to Rs 2 lakh taken in 2017, for new housing, or extension of housing in rural areas, will 
receive an interest subvention of 3 per cent.” 
? Women’s of this country India will come first while allotting the housing under PMAY. Simply what to get it 
from that female candidate will get preference while selecting  and submitting Form. 
? All Houses that will be made under this scheme will be made from eco friendly construction method. 
Eight Interesting Facts about India: Economic Survey 2016-17 
? Indians on The Move- New estimates based on railway passenger traffic data reveal annual work-related 
migration of about 9 million people, almost double what the 2011 Census suggests. 
? Biases in Perception- China’s credit rating were upgraded from A+ to AA- in December 2010 while India’s has 
remained unchanged at BBB-. From 2009 to 2015, China’s credit-to-GDP soared from about 142 percent to 
205 percent and its growth decelerated. The contrast with India’s indicators is striking 
? New Evidence on Weak Targeting of Social Programs- Welfare spending in India suffers from misallocation; 
the districts with the most poor are the ones that suffer from the greatest shortfall of funds in social 
programs. The districts accounting for the poorest 40% receive 29% of the total funding.Political Democracy 
but Fiscal Democracy? - India has 7 taxpayers for every 100 voters ranking us 13th amongst 18 of our 
democratic G-20 peers. India is far from being a full tax-paying democracy with about 5.5 per cent of the 
people who earn paying tax and only 15.5 per cent of the net national income being reported to the tax 
authorities. The tax to GDP ratio at 16.6%, as a result, is well below that of the emerging market economies of 
21 per cent and OECD average of 34 per cent. India is the only large economy with an income tax exemption 
threshold that is 2.5 times the average national per capita income. In most countries, including in emerging 
economies such as China, Brazil and Argentina, anyone earning more than half the average national income 
falls under the income tax bracket. India has increased the income tax exemption threshold on seven 
occasions, from ?40,000 to ?2.5 lakh in the last two decades. Contrast this with China, where the exemption 
threshold has just doubled from 10,000 yuan to roughly 20,000 yuan in the same period even though average 
incomes grew much faster in China than in India. If India lowers its income tax exemption to, say, ?1 lakh 
from the current ?2.5 lakh to be more in line with the rest of the world, nearly 1.5 crore more Indians will fall 
under the tax bracket. To be clear, such a move will not fetch any meaningful extra tax revenues for the 
government but will merely bring more people into the tax bracket. It is thus misleading and specious to 
 
 
 
conclude that India’s small number of taxpayers is entirely a result of some genetic and cultural trait of 
dishonesty of Indian society at large. 
? India's Distinctive Demographic Dividend- India’s share of working age to non-working age population will 
peak later and at a lower level than that for other countries but last longer. The peak of the growth boost due 
to the demographic dividend is fast approaching, with peninsular states peaking soon and the hinterland 
states peaking much later. 
? India Trades More Than China and a Lot Within Itself- As of 2011, India’s openness - measured as the ratio of 
trade in goods and services to GDP has far overtaken China’s, a country famed for using trade as an engine of 
growth. India’s internal trade to GDP is also comparable to that of other large countries and very different 
from the caricature of a barrier-riddled economy. 
? Divergence within India, Big Time- Spatial dispersion in income is still rising in India in the last decade (2004-
14), unlike the rest of the world and even China. That is, despite more porous borders within India than 
between countries internationally, the forces of “convergence” have been elusive. 
? Property Tax Potential Unexploited- Evidence from satellite data indicates that Bengaluru and Jaipur collect 
only between 5% to 20% of their potential property taxes. 
Three Year Action Agenda 
? NITI Aayog has replaced planning commission in 2014. In 2016, Prime minister office decided to replace five 
year plans with 15 year vision document. This document would be complemented with a seven-year strategy 
starting 2017-18 to convert the vision document into implementable policy and action as part of the National 
Development Agenda and a three-year draft action plan. 
? Now, NITI aayog has released three-year draft action plan. 
Highlights of the draft: 
Three Year Revenue and Expenditure Framework: 
? A tentative medium-term expenditure framework (MTEF) for the Centre is proposed. Based on forecasts of 
revenue, it proposes sector-wise expenditure allocation for three years. 
? Proposes reduction of the fiscal deficit to 3% of the GDP by 2018-19, and the revenue deficit to 0.9% of the 
GDP by 2019-20. 
? The roadmap consisting of shifting additional revenues towards high priority sectors: health, education, 
agriculture, rural development, defence, railways, roads and other categories of capital expenditure. 
Agriculture: Doubling Farmers’ Incomes by 2022 
? Reform the Agricultural Produce Marketing to ensure that farmers receive remunerative prices. 
? Raise productivity through enhanced irrigation, faster seed replacement and precision agriculture. 
? Shift to high value commodities: horticulture, animal husbandry, fisheries.  
? A separate detailed roadmap issued by Member, Professor Ramesh Chand  
Industry and Services: Job Creation 
? Create Coastal Employment Zones to boost exports and generate high-productivity jobs. 
? Enhance labour-market flexibility through reforming key laws 
? Address the high and rising share of Non-Performing Assets (NPAs) in India’s banks through supporting the 
auction of larger assets to private asset reconstruction companies (ARCs), and strengthening the State Bank 
of India-led ARC. 
Urban Development 
? Need to bring down land prices to make housing affordable through increased supply of urban land 
? Reform the Rent Control Act along the lines of Model Tenancy Act; 
? Initiate titles of urban property 
? Promote dormitory housing 
 
 
? Address issues related to city transportation infrastructure and waste management. 
Regional strategies 
? Actions targeted aimed at improving development outcomes in the (i) North Eastern Region, (ii) Coastal Areas 
& Islands, (iii) North Himalayan states and (iv) Desert and Drought prone states. 
Transport and Digital Connectivity 
? Strengthen infrastructure in roadways, railways, shipping & ports, inland waterways and civil aviation. 
? Ensure last-mile digital connectivity, particularly for e-governance and financial inclusion, through developing 
infrastructure, simplifying the payments structure and improving literacy. 
? Facilitate Public-Private Partnerships.by reorienting the role of the India Infrastructure Finance Company Ltd. 
(IIFCL), introducing low cost debt instruments and operationalizing the National Investment Infrastructure 
Fund (NIIF).  
Energy 
? Adopt consumer friendly measures such as provision of electricity to all households by 2022, LPG connection 
to all BPL households, elimination of black carbon by 2022, and extension of the city gas distribution 
programme to 100 smart cities. 
? Reduce the cross-subsidy in the power sector to ensure competitive supply of electricity to industry. 
? Reform the coal sector by setting up a regulator, encouraging commercial mining and improving labour 
productivity.  
Science & Technology 
? Create comprehensive database of all government schemes and evaluate them for desirable changes 
? Develop guidelines for PPPs in S&T to improve education and industry-academia linkages for demand-driven 
research 
? Channel S&T to address development challenges such as access to education, improving agricultural 
productivity and wastewater management. 
? Create a “National Science, Technology & Innovation Foundation” to identify and deliberate national issues, 
recommend priority interventions in S&T and prepare frameworks for their implementation 
? Streamline the administration of the patent regime  
Governance 
? Re-calibrate the role of the government by shrinking its involvement in activities that do not serve a public 
purpose and expanding its role in areas that necessarily require public provision 
? Implement the roadmap on closing select loss-making PSEs and strategic disinvestment of 20 identified CPSEs. 
? Expand the government’s role in public health and quality education. 
? Strengthen the civil services through better human resource management, e-governance, addressing 
anomalies in tenures of secretaries and increasing specialization and lateral entry.   
Taxation and Regulation 
? Tackle tax evasion, expand the tax base and simplify the tax system through reforms. For example, consolidate 
existing custom duty rates to a unified rate. 
? Create an institutional mechanism for promoting competition through comprehensive review and reform of 
government regulations across all sectors. 
? Strengthen public procurement 
Education and Skill Development 
? Shift the emphasis on the quality of school education paying particular attention to foundational learning 
? Move away from input-based to outcome-based assessments 
? Rank outcomes across jurisdictions 
? Use ICT judiciously to align teaching to the student’s level and pace 
Health 
? Focus on public health through significantly increasing government expenditure on it, establishing a focal 
point and creating a dedicated cadre. 
Read More
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