25 October 2018: UPSC Exam PIB Summary & Analysis

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International Arya Mahasammelan-2018

  • The President of India, Shri Ram Nath Kovind, inaugurated the International Arya Mahasammelan – 2018 in Delhi.
  • The President enumerated about Swami Dayanand Saraswati:
    • He showed us the path of renaissance and self-pride.
    • He was an intrepid warrior of social and spiritual reform.
    • He took effective measures for educational and social reform especially for women empowerment and eradication of untouchability. His work is relevant even in the present times both for Indian society and the entire world.
    • He had worked for eradication of discrimination in society on the basis of caste, creed and sect and motivated everyone to become Arya – that is – the best.
  • In Mahasammelan they discussed on the issues such as prevention of superstition, modernization, women empowerment, tribal welfare, and management of natural calamities.
  • The President said that we will be celebrating 200thbirth anniversary of Swami Dayanand Saraswati in 2024 and will also celebrate the 150th anniversary of the Arya Samaj in 2025.

Certification of Yoga Professionals and Accreditation of Yoga schools

  • The Ministry of AYUSH announced a scheme on 22ndJune 2015 known as “Scheme for Voluntary Certification of Yoga Professionals and Accreditation of Yoga Institutions”.


  • To certify the competencies of Yoga Professionals and Institutions against the standards recognized for the same.

The main objectives of the Yoga Certification Board are as follows:

  • To promote Yoga as means to promote holistic health and human values.
  • To promote Yoga as a career skill.
  • To develop standards & parameters, assess competencies and to certify Yoga Professionals for various levels.
  • To develop standards & parameters, assess competencies and Accreditation of Yoga Schools/ Institutions/ Centres.
  • To bring uniformity and standards in Yoga courses conducted across India and Globe.
  • To collaborate with national and international organisations for promotion of Yoga.

The Scheme for Yoga Certification will offer Certification of Yoga Professionals under 3 categories to offer basic level certification as well as specialized certification as follows:

  • Yoga Education and Training-            
    • Level 1 (Yoga Protocol Instructor)- Yoga Instructor for teaching common yoga protocol of IDY level. Such Yoga certified professionals can be Instructors for Yoga classes held in parks, societies and other places to cater to need of people practicing Yoga for healthy life.
    • Level 2 (Yoga Wellness Instructor) – Yoga instructor to teach Yoga for prevention of illness and ensure wellness in schools (primary and secondary)/ Yoga centers /organizations.
    • Level 3 (Yoga Teacher & Evaluator) – Work as Master Trainers in education Courses and training programs in Yoga. He or she can also act as Evaluator and assessor of Yoga Professionals. Can teach in colleges/ Universities/ Institutions of higher Learning.
    • Level 4 (Yoga Master) – Work as Master Educator / Trainer in Yoga Educational programs & courses and for skilled Yoga professionals
  • Yoga Therapy
    • Yoga Therapist – Such certified Yoga professionals can work under the medical supervision of Certified Physician or certified Yoga Consultant
    • Yoga Consultant – The certified Yoga Consultant can practice Yoga for treatment of diseases in medical setups or can also work independently.
  • Skilled Yoga Professionals
    • Shat Karma Technician- To work at clinical setups under medical supervision. To act as Resource Persons for national as well as international conference on such practices/ Kriyas.
    • Meditation Expert – To work as demonstrator at various platforms specially national and international workshops and seminars.

Seminar on “Women’s Health Challenges, Access and Prevention”


  • Smt Anupriya Patel, Minister of State for Health and Family Welfare inaugurated a seminar on “Women’s Health Challenges, Access and Prevention” organised by Confederation of Indian Industry (CII).

Speaking at the function, Smt Anupriya Patel stated:

  • Women are strong pillars of any vibrant society and sustained development of the country can be achieved only if we take holistic care of the women and children.
  • India has made considerable progress in the area of women’s health.
  • Maternal mortality Ratio (MMR) is one such indicator which reflects this progress. India’s MMR in the last few years has declined at an accelerated pace to reach 130 per one lakh live births in 2014-16. This means we save more than 30 mothers every day.
  • The National Health Mission a “continuum of care” approach is employed to ensure the best possible health outcomes for women throughout their reproductive life-cycle.
  • In the rural areas, the out of pocket expenditure for childbirth in public health facilities has also decreased.
  • The Ministry of Health has launched ‘LaQshya – Labour room Quality improvement Initiative’ in 2017.
  • The launch of Ayushman Bharat, interventions to address issues of women’s health will be further strengthened and made women-centric.
  • Empowerment of women and their health are very closely related and the rise in institutional deliveries through Janani Shishu Suraksha Karyakaram (JSSK) and Janani SurakshaYojana (JSY) are providing healthcare services to encourage this.

‘Impactful Policy Research in Social Science’ (IMPRESS)

  • The Union Minister for Human Resource Development Shri Prakash Javadekar launched the web portal of the Scheme “Impactful Policy Research in Social Sciences (IMPRESS)”.

About the Scheme:

  • 1500 research projects will be awarded for 2 years to support the social science research in the higher educational institutions and to enable research to guide policy making.

The objectives of the scheme are:

  • To identify and fund research proposals in social sciences with maximum impact on the governance and society.
  • To focus research on (11) broad thematic areas such as:
    • State and Democracy,
    • Urban transformation,
    • Media, Culture and Society,
    • Employment,
    • Skills and Rural transformation,
    • Governance,
    • Innovation and Public Policy,
    • Growth,
    • Macro-trade and Economic Policy,
    • Agriculture and Rural Development,
    • Health and Environment,
    • Science and Education,
    • Social Media and Technology,
    • Politics,
    • Law and Economics. 
  • To ensure selection of projects through a transparent, competitive process on online mode.
  • To provide opportunity for social science researchers in any institution in the country, including all Universities (Central and State), private institutions with 12(B) status conferred by UGC.
  • ICSSR funded/recognised research institutes will also be eligible to submit research proposals on the given themes and sub-themes.

The following will be the modalities for implementation:

  • There will be (4) calls for proposals – October, 2018, February 2019, September 2019 and February 2020.  The process of evaluation of the proposals and selection will be completed within 90 days from the date of call for proposals.
  • The experts for evaluation of proposals will be persons of eminence and selected using objective criteria.
  • There will be a regular monitoring of the progress of projects using the online portal, in which the progress can be directly updated by the Project Coordinator.
  • There will be a third party evaluation of the projects in March 2021.

“Scheme for Promotion of Academic and Research Collaboration (SPARC)”

  • The Minister of Human Resource Development, Shri Prakash Javadekar launched   the web portal of the Scheme “Scheme for Promotion of Academic and Research Collaboration (SPARC)”.


  • At improving the research ecosystem of India’s higher educational institutions by facilitating academic and research collaborations between Indian Institutions and the best institutions in the world.

Salient Feature of SPARC are:

  • This scheme will improve research ecosystem of  India’s higher educational institutions by facilitating academic and research collaborations between Indian Institutions and the best institutions in the world from 28 selected nations to jointly solve problems of national and international relevance.

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