Daily Current Affairs

Prelims Prominence - May 31, 2018

Ministry of Power

Enlighten about the Ministry

  • The Ministry of Power started functioning independently with effect from 2nd July, 1992.
  • Earlier it was known as the Ministry of Energy sources.
  • Electricity is a concurrent subject at Entry 38 in List III of the seventh Schedule of the Constitution of India.
  • The Ministry of Power is primarily responsible for the development of electrical energy in the country.
  • The Ministry is concerned with perspective planning, policy formulation, processing of projects for investment decision, monitoring of the implementation of power projects, training and manpower development and the administration and enactment of legislation in regard to thermal, hydro power generation, transmission and distribution.
  • The Ministry of Power is responsible for the Administration of the Electricity Act, 2003, the Energy Conservation Act , 2001 and to undertake such amendments to these Acts, as may be necessary from time to time, in conformity with the Government's policy objectives.

SAuBHaGYa: Pradhan Mantri Sahaj Bijli Har Ghar Yojana

  • Government of India has launched a scheme called "Pradhan Mantri Sahaj Bijli Har Ghar Yojana (Saubhagya)" in Sep'17 to achieve universal household electrification in the country at a total cost of Rs. 16,320 crore including gross budgetary support of Rs. 12,320 crores from Government of India.
  • The objective of the scheme is to provide last mile connectivity and electricity connections to all households in rural and urban areas.
  • Free of cost electricity connections to all remaining un-electrified households with at least one deprivation on the basis of SECC data in rural areas and economically poor households in urban areas would be given.
  • Others would be charged a sum of Rs. 500 per household in ten equal instalments with the bill.
  • The households located in remote and inaccessible areas would be provided with Solar Photovoltaic (SPV) based standalone systems with LED lights, fan, power plug etc.
  • The beneficiaries will be identified on the basis of socio economic conditions using SECC 2011 data.
  • It is targeted to achieve universal household electrification in the country by 31st March 2019.
  • The Scheme was launched in Manipur on 28th Nov 2017 and 1.75 lakh households of Manipur (1.62 lakh rural households and 0.13 lakh urban households) are proposed to be included under the Scheme.

Integrated Power Development Scheme (IPDS)

  • IPDS Scheme aims to provide quality and reliable 24x7 power supply in the urban area.

Ujwal Discom Assurance Yojana (UDAY)

  • Ujwal DISCOM Assurance Yojana (UDAY), a scheme for financial and operational turnaround of Power Distribution Companies was formulated and launched by the Government on 20.11.2015 in consultation with various stakeholders.
  • The scheme aims to provide permanent solution to legacy of debts of approximately Rs.4.3 lakh crores and address potential future losses.
  • The scheme also envisages reform measures in all sectors – generation, transmission, distribution, coal, and energy efficiency. The scheme availability period has expired on 31-03-2017.
  • An inter-ministerial Monitoring Committee Mechanism for UDAY has been put in place to ensure a close monitoring of the performance of the participating States under UDAY.
  • Also a web portal (www.uday.gov.in) has been created for monitoring purposes.

Mobile applications and websites launched to ensure accountability and transparency

URJA (Urban Jyoti Abhiyan) Mobile App-

  • URJA App offers information on Consumer complaints redressal, Release of new service connection, Average number of interruptions faced by consumer, Average duration of interruptions faced by consumer, Number of consumers making e-payments, Energy lost / power theft i.e. AT&C loss, IT Enablement (Go-live of towns), SCADA Implementation, Urban System Strengthening, Feeder Data on National Power Portal, IPDS NIT progress, IPDS Award progress.

SAuBHaGYa Webportal

  • ‘Saubhagya’ Web-Portal – a Platform for transparently monitoring Universal Household Electrification – was launched on 16th Nov, 2017.

National Power Portal

  • National Power Portal(NPP) – a Centralized Platform for Collation and Dissemination of Indian Power Sector Information – was launched on 14th Nov, 2017 and would be a single point interface for all Power Sector Apps launched previously by the Ministry.

Launch of e-Bidding portal for utilization of domestic coal in IPP Power Stations for reducing the cost of power generation

  • The Ministry of Drinking Water and Sanitation, Government of India, is headed by the Cabinet Minister, Drinking Water & Sanitation.
  • It is the Nodal Ministry for the overall policy, planning, funding and coordination of two flagship programmes of the Government of India, namely, the National Rural Drinking Water Programme (NRDWP) for rural drinking water supply and the Swachh Bharat Mission (Gramin) [SBM (G)] for sanitation in the country.

Swachh Bharat Mission

  • An e-bidding portal was launched on 5th July 2017 for providing e-Bidding solution to States to select Independent Power Producers (IPPs) for procurement of power by transferring their domestic coal under the scheme of flexibility in utilization of domestic coal.
  • The e-Bidding portal has been designed to facilitate States in inviting bids for procurement of power from the prospective IPPs in transparent and fair manner.
  • The successful bidder shall be selected through e-Reverse Bidding process. The link for portal is available on the website of Ministry of Power and PFC Consulting Ltd.
  • The flexibility in utilization of domestic coal scheme envisages transferring coal to more efficient IPPs generating stations, leading to lower generation costs and ultimately lesser cost of electricity for the consumers.

MERIT (Merit Order Despatch of Electricity for Rejuvenation of Income and Transparency) web portal

  • A Web Portal ‘MERIT’ i.e. Merit Order Despatch of Electricity for Rejuvenation of Income and Transparency was launched on 23rd June 2017.
  • This Mobile App and Web Portal displays the actual data of dispatched generation by the states transparently and provides opportunity to states for improving their power purchase portfolio.( http://www.meritindia.in)

Energy Conservation

National LED Programme

  • Prime Minister, on 5th January, 2015 launched the National LED Programme with the aim of promoting use of the most efficient lighting technology at affordable rates.
  • This programme has two components
  • (i) Unnat Jyoti by Affordable LED for All (UJALA) to provide LED bulbs to domestic consumers with a target to replace 77 crore incandescent bulbs with LED bulbs and
  • (ii) Street Lighting National Programme (SLNP) to replace 1.34 crore conventional street lights with smart and energy efficient LED street lights by March, 2019.
  • EESL has evolved a service model to enable municipalities to replace conventional lights with LEDs at no upfront cost.
  • The balance cost is recovered through the municipalities by monetising the energy savings.
  • Similarly, for domestic lights, EESL service model enables domestic households to procure LED lights at an affordable price of Rs. 10/- each and the balance on easy instalment from their electricity bill.


  • Updated version of Energy Conservation Building Codes i.e. ECBC 2017 launched in June 2017.
  • ECO-NIWAS, an online tool to guide the public in incorporating energy efficiency elements in their homes, such as building materials, its design features and appliances launched.

Perform, Achieve and Trade (PAT) Scheme

  • PAT cycle III commenced from 1st April, 2017 with the identification of 116 more DCs in the 11 existing sectors, totalling 737 DCs.
  • Hotels under Commercial Buildings category having energy consumption of more than 1000 toe and Petrochemical units having energy consumption more than 100000 toe has been notified as new sectors under PAT scheme.
  • Online portal on E-Scerts trading infrastructure launched which has been developed by BEE in collaboration with Central Electricity Regulatory Commission (CERC)

Ministry of Personnel, Public Grievances and Pensions

Enlighten about the Ministry

  • The Ministry of Personnel, Public Grievances and Pensions is the coordinating agency of the Central Government in personnel matters specially issues concerning recruitment, training, career development, staff welfare as well as the post retirement dispensation.
  • The Ministry is also concerned with the process of responsive people-oriented modern administration.
  • Allocation of Business Rules defines the work allotted for the Ministry.
  • The Ministry comprises of the following three Departments.

1. Department of Personnel & Training (DOPT)
2. Department of Pensions & Pensioners Welfare(DOP&PW)
3. Department of Administrative Reforms and Public Grievances (DARPG)

Enlighten about the events

  • First ‘Pension Adalat’ by DoP&PW held on September 20, 2017.
  • MoS (PP) Dr Jitendra Singh inaugurated the first ‘Pension Adalat’ on September 20, 2017 at the Pre-Retirement Counselling Workshop organised by the Department of Pensions & Pensioners’ Welfare (DoP&PW).
  • The ‘Anubhav’ awards 2017 were presented to 16 pensioners for their contribution towards creating institutional memory for the departments.
  • DARPG starts ‘DARPGSEVA’ to address issues related to public grievances and administrative reforms.
  • The DARPG started its Twitter Seva on February 1, 2017. The Twitter Handle is ‘DARPGSEVA’.

Department of Administrative Reforms and Public Grievances

  • Prompt disposal of grievances by Government; DARPG writes to States Governments to link their Grievance Cells to Government’s CPGRAMS.

Centralised Pension Grievance Registration and Monitoring System (CPENGRAMS).

  • Concerted efforts are being made to bring down the pendency of old grievances while maintaining the quality in disposal.
  • The time limit to redress grievances is 60 days. During the same period, 84.2% grievances were disposed of within 60 days.


  • New training programme ‘COMMIT’ launched for State Government officials.
  • MoS, Dr. Jitendra Singh launched a new training programme, ‘Comprehensive Online Modified Modules on Induction Training’ (COMMIT) for State Government officials
  • The objective of this training programme is to improve the public service delivery mechanism and provide citizen centric administration through capacity building of officials who interact with the citizens on day-to-day basis.
  • 7th edition of the Vigilance Manual released; online version also released for the first time.

Integrity Index by CVC

  • CVC to develop Integrity Index of 25 Organizations
  • The CVC has therefore decided to go in for development of the Integrity Index-based on bench-marking of internal processes and controls within an organisation as well as management of relationships and expectations of outside stakeholders.

Online Software for Departmental Proceedings launched

  • The online software for Departmental Proceedings was launched on June 22, 2017.
  • The online system will enable monitoring of the departmental cases more effectively to complete inquiries within stipulated timeframes and fix accountability at different stages.
  • The online portal will initially be adopted in respect of IAS officers posted in the Central Government and will subsequently be extended to AIS officers in the Central Government as well as Central Group ‘A’ employees.
  • The State Governments will also be involved in the subsequent phases for consideration of extension to AIS officers serving in the States.
  • Government lays down specific 'timeline' for completing enquiry against officers and members of All India Services (AIS).


  • MoU between LBSNAA, Mussoorie and Namibia Institute of Public Administration and Management (NIPAM.
  • Administrative Staff College of India (ASCI), Hyderabad and Central University of Jammu sign MoU.

Mobile App for pensioners

  • Moving from e-governance to m-governance, various facilities for pensioners have been brought under Mobile App.
  • MoS-PP, Dr Jitendra Singh launched the Mobile App that has been created to avail the services of Pensioners’ Portal.
  • With the App, a superannuating central civil government official will be able to monitor the progress of his pension settlement, and retired officials will be able to self-assess their pension through the pension calculator and are also able to register their grievances, if any, and get updates on orders issued by the Department.

Online Vigilance System

  • Online Vigilance System of Board and below Board Level Executives of CPSEs and e-Service Book of the DoPT employees launched.
  • The e-Service Book of the DoPT employees was also launched on the occasion.
  • The Online Vigilance System is a technology based mechanism introduced to obtain vigilance status of 120-130 Board Level executive appointments made annually of CPSEs timely, accurately and objectively so that process of their appointment is expedited.
  • The system would enable efficient vigilance clearance of officers on real time basis who apply for these senior level posts.
  • The e-service book has been implemented by DoPT for its 661 employees and is taking concrete steps to roll out e-service book in respect of all Central Govt. employees in a time bound manner with the support of NIC and involvement of Cadre Controlling Authorities.
  • In this regard a workshop of all Cadre Controlling Authorities (CCAs) was organised to discuss the roll out plan in all Ministries and Departments.

National Conference on e-Governance

  • 20th National Conference on e-Governance organised in Vishakhapatnam
  • Organised by the Department of Administrative Reforms and Public Grievances (DARPG), in association with the Ministry of Electronics & Information Technology, and Government of Andhra Pradesh

Good Governance and Replication of Best Practices

  • Regional Conferences on “Good Governance and Replication of Best Practices” A two-day Regional Conference on “Good Governance and Replication of Best Practices” involving 12 States and 4 UTs of Northern, Western and Central Region of India held in Nainital.
  • The DARPG has so far organized 27 such regional conferences to share experiences in the formulation and successful implementation of Good Governance practices and to facilitate speedy and efficient delivery of public services.

Vigilance Awareness Week, 2017

  • The Vice-President Shri M. Venkaiah Naidu inaugurated the Vigilance Awareness Week, 2017 on October 30, 2017, organised by the Central Vigilance Commission.
  • The theme of the week this year was “My Vision-Corruption-free India”.

Jeevan Pramaan

  • Launched by the Prime Minister Shri Narendra Modi in November, 2014, more than 11 lakh pensioners availed this Aadhar-based scheme for online submission of digital life certificate through banks during the month November, 2017.
  • The scheme benefits pensioners specially the old and infirm who can submit life certificate from the comfort of their homes anywhere in the country or abroad.

Sources – Official websites of Ministry of Power, Ministry of Personnel, Public Grievances and Pensions , PIB, My Gov