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Zero Budget Natural Farming


What is ZBNF?


  • Zero Budget Natural farming (ZBNF) is said to be “do nothing farming”.
  • It involves the application of nature’s principles in farming.
  • It practises no-till, no chemical use in farming.
  • Alongside, dispersal of clay seed balls to propagate plants is done.
  • The key aspects integral to it and which require locally available materials are:
  1. seeds treated with cow dung and urine
  2. soil rejuvenated with cow dung, cow urine and other local materials to increase microbes
  • cover crops, straw and other organic matter to retain soil moisture and build humus
  1. soil aeration for favourable soil conditions
  • These methods are combined with natural insect management methods when required.
  • The ZBNF is a technology of the future with a traditional idiom.
What are the benefits?


  • In ZBNF, yields of various cash and food crops have been found to be significantly higher.
  • E.g. yields from ZBNF plots were found on average to be 11% higher for cotton than in non-ZBNF plots.
  • The yield for Guli ragi (ZBNF) was 40% higher than non-ZBNF.
  • Input costs are near zero as no fertilizers and pesticides are used.
  • Profits in most areas under ZBNF were from higher yield and lower inputs.
  • Model ZBNF farms were able to withstand drought and flooding.
  • Notably these are the serious emerging concerns with regard to climate change.
  • Planting multiple crops and border crops on same field provides varied income and nutrient sources.
  • Overall, there is
  1. reduced use of water and electricity
  2. improved health of farmers
  3. flourishing of local ecosystems and biodiversity
  4. no toxic chemical residues in the environment
  5. improvements in soil, biodiversity, livelihoods, water
  6. climate resilience
  7. women’s empowerment and nutrition
How is ZBNF better than organic farming?


  • Organic agriculture often involves addition of materials required in bulk and have to be purchased.
  • These are large amounts of manure, vermicompost and other materials.
  • These turn out to be expensive for most small farm holders.


  • The Index of Industrial Production (IIP) is an index that indicates the performance of various industrial sectors of the Indian economy.
  • It is calculated and published by the Central Statistical Organisation (CSO) every month.
  • It is a composite indicator of the general level of industrial activity in the economy.

Official Definition – As given by CSO


It is a composite indicator that measures the short-term changes in the volume of production of a basket of industrial products during a given period with respect to that in a chosen base period.”

This index gives the growth rates of different industry groups of the economy over a specified time period.IIP – Explanation


  • The industry groups that it measures are classified under the following:
    • Broad sectors like manufacturing, mining and electricity.
    • Use-based sectors like capital goods, basic goods, intermediate goods, infrastructure goods, consumer durables and consumer non-durables.
  • The eight core industries of India represent about 40% of the weight of items that are included in the IIP. The Eight Core Sectors/Industries are:
    • Electricity
    • Steel
    • Refinery products
    • Crude oil
    • Coal
    • Cement
    • Natural gas
    • Fertilisers
  • The United Nations Statistics Division (UNSD) recommends including quarrying, gas steam and air-conditioning supply, sewerage, water supply, waste management and remediation in the broad sectors. But this is not done due to the problems in data availability on a monthly basis for all these sectors. So, the data has been restricted to mining, electricity and manufacturing.

Index of Industrial Production Importance


  • The Index is used by government agencies and departments such as the Finance Ministry and the RBI for policy making.
  • It is also used for estimating the Gross Value Added of the manufacturing sector on a quarterly basis.
  • In addition, the Index is also used by business analysts, financial experts and the private industry for multiple purposes.
  • It is the only measure on the physical volume of production.
  • It is also extremely useful for the projection of advance GDP estimates.
IIP Latest Change


  • The latest change in the IIP was made in 2017.
  • Any index is to be subject to changes and modifications like changing the base year, including more items in the basket, etc.
  • The new and current base year for IIP is 2011 – 12. The previous base year was 2004 – 05.


FRP dues to Sugarcane Growers


Sugar Industry


  • Sugar industryis an important agro-based industry that impacts rural livelihood of about 50 million sugarcane farmers and around 5 lakh workers directly employed in sugar mills.
  • India is the world’s second largest sugar producerafter Brazil and also the largest consumer.

Price Determination of Sugarcane


  • Sugarcane prices are determined by:
    • Federal Government
    • State Government
  • The Federal/Central Government announces Fair and Remunerative Priceswhich are determined on the recommendation of the Commission for Agricultural Costs and Prices (CACP) and are announced by the Cabinet Committee on Economic Affairs, which is chaired by Prime Minister.
  • The State Advised Prices (SAP)are announced by key sugarcane producing states which are generally higher than FRP.
Commission for Agricultural Costs and Prices (CACP)


  • The Commission for Agricultural Costs and Prices (CACP) is an attached office of the Ministry of Agriculture and Farmers Welfare, Government of India. It came into existence in January 1965.
  • It is an advisory body whose recommendations are not binding on Government.

Pradhan Mantri Kaushal Vikas Yojana (PMKVY)


Launched in 2015, it is a flagship program of Ministry of Skill Development and Entrepreneurship (MSDE). National Skill Development Corporation (NSDC) implements it with the help of training partners.

  • It aims to mobilize youth to take up skill training with the aim of increasing productivity and aligning the training and certification to the needs of the country.
  • Owing to the success of PMKVY 1.0 wherein more than 19 lakh students were trained as against the target of 24 lakh, the scheme was relaunched as PMKVY 2.0 (2016-2020) with an allocated budget of Rs. 12000 Crores that aims to train 10 million youth by the year 2020.
Key Components


  • Short Term Training:Training as per National Skills Qualification Framework (NSQF) is provided to those who are either school/college dropouts or unemployed.
  • Recognition of Prior Learning (RPL):An individual with a certain set of skills or with prior learning experience is assessed and certified under RPL with grade according to the NSQF.
  • Special Projects:This component ensures training in special areas and premises of government bodies and corporate. It aims to encourage training in vulnerable and marginalized groups of society.
  • Training Partners (TPs)are mandated to organize Kaushal and Rozgar Melas every six months, thus providing placement assistance to certified ones.


  • Out of 4.06 million candidates that got enrolled between its relaunch and 24 January 2019, 3.73 million completed the course.
  • Certification Stats:Candidates who score at least 50% of total marks are provided with certification. Nearly, 30% of those who enrolled between the above mentioned period have not been certified yet. This shows that even skill training is not enough for such people. This point towards the lack of proper basic education at schools and colleges.
  • Placement Stats:Tracking of placements is mandatory under PMKVY. Till 26 October 2018, 1.94 lakh candidates got a certificate and out of them, only 55% got employed across different sectors. This shows the low employability level under PMKVY.


Capacity Building in Textile Sector


  • The Government has approved a new skill development scheme titled Samarth-Scheme for Capacity Building in Textile Sector covering the entire value chain of the textile sector, excluding Spinning & Weaving in the organized sector, on pan India basis including the state of Tripura for a period of three years from 2017-18 to 2019-20 with an outlay of Rs.1300 crore to train 10 lakh persons. The salient features of the scheme are given in Annexure-I.


  • The details of State Government agencies allocated skilling targets so far and signed Memorandum of Understanding with Ministry of Textiles for undertaking training programme under Samarth at a function held on 14th August, 2019, is given in Annexure-II.
  • The Ministry has allocated over 4 lakh skilling targets in organised and traditional sectors to Government agencies in 18 States and skilling targets in traditional sector to Sectoral Organisations of Ministry of Textiles (Central Silk Board, Development Commissioner of Handicrafts, Development Commissioner of Handloom and National Jute Board) for commencing the training programme under the scheme.

One Stop Centre


One stop centre is a centrally sponsored scheme of Ministry of Women and Child Development (MWCD), for addressing the problem of violence against women.

  • It is a subscheme of umbrella scheme for National Mission for Empowerment of Women including Indira Gandhi Mattritav Sahyaog Yojana.
  • One stop centre, will be established across the country to provide integrated support andassistance under one roof to women affected by violence, both in private and public spaces.
  • Funding:The scheme is funded through Nirbhaya Fund and the central government provides 100% financial assistance to the state governments /Union Territories administrations.
  • Auditing:Audit will be done as per Comptroller & Auditor General of India norms and social audit will also be undertaken by civil society groups.
  • Services:One stop centres will be integrated with women helplines to provide following services:
    • Emergency response and rescue services.
    • Medical assistance.
    • Assistance to women in lodging the FIR.
    • Psycho- social support and counselling.
    • Legal aid and counselling.
    • Shelter
    • Video conferencing facility.



  • ‘Nirbhaya Fund’was established for women safety pertaining to the strategic areas of prevention, protection and rehabilitation.
  • The12th Plan Working Group on Women’s Agency and Empowerment had recommended setting up of one stop crisis centres.
  • Usha Mehra Commission,had recommended for the establishment of a “one-stop centre” to help victims of sexual assault and ensure speedy punishment to culprits.