Mains Q & A 7 January 2023

Mains Q & A 7 January 2023

Q1. POSHAN Abhiyaan 2.0 has created a supportive environment to fight hunger and malnutrition. But in order to eradicate malnutrition in India, it must take into account the brand-new realities of the modern world. Examine. (250 words)

Paper & Topic: GS II Government Policies and Interventions

Model Answer:


Poshan Abhiyan reintroduced nutrition as a crucial element of development and showed how multidimensional and multisectoral it is by pledging to eradicate malnutrition in India by the year 2022. It was established with the intention of enhancing nutritional content, delivery, outreach, and outcome. This was done with a renewed emphasis on developing practises that support health, wellness, and immunity against disease and malnutrition in the country.

In honour of Nutrition Month (Poshan Mah), which starts on September 1st, the Ministry for Women and Child Development recently launched Poshan 2.0 and requested that all Aspirational Districts establish a Poshan Vatika (nutrition garden).


A description of Poshan Abhiyan 2.0

Poshan 2.0 integrates a number of related techniques to take use of synergies.

Malnutrition hotspots will receive more attention when 112 aspiring districts are found.

Poshan Maah: It is a one-month programme with a focus on antenatal care, effective nursing, anaemia, growth monitoring, girls’ education, food, the right age for marriage, hygiene and sanitation, and healthy eating (Food Fortification).

The exercises centre on social and behavioural change communication and are based on the Jan Andolan Guidelines (SBCC).

Under the current Poshan Maah, efforts to identify children who suffer from severe acute malnutrition have increased, and Anganwadi employees have been required to refer children who have medical problems to hospitals and NRCs.

Poshan Vatika: Its primary objective is to ensure the provision of nutrients through homegrown organic food while also maintaining the health of the soil.

All parties would take part in Poshan Vatika planting efforts in the space made available at anganwadis, school grounds, and grame panchayats.

COVID’s effects on Indian nutrition:

The push for better nutrition lost its momentum when Covid lockdowns caused the closure of schools, Anganwadi centres, and Nutritional Rehabilitation Centers. Frontline employees were also required to put Covid-related work ahead of their regular duties, which included locating, referring, and keeping track of kids who had moderate and severe acute malnutrition as well as other nutrition-strengthening duties.

States did their best to adapt, replacing hot, cooked meals with dry rations or monetary transfers.
It is understandable, nevertheless, that because to Covid surveillance taking priority, they were unable to match the intensity of Poshan Abhiyan.

Indirect consequences of the pandemic, such as the disruption of food systems, dried-up revenue sources, job losses, and following financial difficulties, may have made it more difficult for those who are economically weak to access nutrient-rich food.

Streamlining Poshan 2.0 to address COVID-related dietary issues:

Community management practises: Community management practises should be strengthened to prevent those who are experiencing severe acute malnutrition from later developing medical problems during a pandemic.

Adaptation: Since the possibility of additional Covid waves in the near future cannot be completely ruled out, we must change our dietary regimens to take this possibility into consideration.

Document Training: In order to embrace and incorporate best practises, it is crucial to document and learn from states like Gujarat, Madhya Pradesh, and Rajasthan that have recently extended Community-based Management of Malnutrition practises. These states, among others, include Rajasthan, Gujarat, and Madhya Pradesh. Rajasthan, Gujarat, and Madhya Pradesh are a few of these states.

The nutritional health of children and new mothers will be greatly improved by additional initiatives, such as encouraging target communities to take iron and folic acid diligently and encouraging new mothers to nurse for longer lengths of time.

By fortifying food, the body is guaranteed to absorb essential micronutrients.


Two-thirds of the additional 9 million children under the age of five who could get wasting from COVID-related shocks reside in South Asia, according to a study that was published in Nature in August. Therefore, it is imperative that we not only keep working toward Poshan 2.0 but also step up our efforts while maintaining a safe distance, wearing masks, and maintaining good hand hygiene.

Q2. The rise in farmers’ incomes cannot be solely attributed to the Minimum Support Price (MSP). A strategy centred on diversification and technology-based value chains in agriculture is needed to quadruple farmers’ incomes. Discuss. (250 words)

Paper & Topic: GS III Indian Agriculture

Model Answer:


In April 2016, the government established an Inter-ministerial Committee under Ashok Dalwai’s direction to investigate worries around the doubling of farmers’ incomes. Farmers’ income can be doubled by increased output overall, higher market price realisation, lower production costs, crop diversity, efficient post-harvest management, value addition, etc.

A full reorganisation of agriculture is necessary to ensure farmers a consistent income, even though MSP may not be very effective for price realisation.


MSP and higher price realisation cannot coexist:

The problem with MSP is that, despite being heralded as an essential component for farmers, it also comes with a variety of implementation-related problems that promise a rapid boost in their income and stability. In reality, there are a lot of reasons why this affects the price that farmers realise.

Methodology: MSP covers a range of costs, such as labour and the price of sowing (A2) (FL). It has been argued that these elements, which are up for debate, should be based on comprehensive costs (C2), which include include expenses for land rent, should be considered.

Inflation: An excessive rise in MSP either has inflationary effects on the economy, such as raising the price of vegetables and grains, or it causes the government to lose money in the treasury if it decides to sell the items at a lower price than the higher MSP it paid for them.

several elements MSP stands for “national single price policy.” The actual cost of production does, however, vary from place to place, and this difference is especially obvious in regions with subpar infrastructure and irrigation systems. As a result, not every farmer benefits equally.

Procurement is inefficient at MSP: First, a sizable share of the purchase of wheat and paddy to meet the requirements of the public distribution system is handled by state governments (PDS).

Less than 10% of the entire amount of wheat and paddy produced by farmers is purchased by the Food Corporation of India (FCI).

Since procurement activities are essentially nonexistent in the northeast and many other regions, farmers are forced to sell below MSP there.

The outcomes of these programmes suggest that the majority of farmers are unlikely to benefit from increased MSPs for kharif crops or rabi since the states do not have the necessary storage facilities, operating capital, or labour to conduct extensive procurement of all commodities.

Agri-Infrastructural: Increasing the MSP without making infrastructure improvements is merely a transitory option. The MSP-based procurement system also depends on middlemen, commission agents, and APMC representatives, all of whom are challenging for smaller farmers to reach. Although it has immediate effects, it also needs long-term improvements to support it.

Value chains in agriculture with an emphasis on technology and diversification:

The low level and yearly variability of farmer income is a significant contributor to agrarian distress. This misery is escalating and getting worse over time because farming provides a living for more than half the people. Consequently, a new strategy is needed.

By combining all of their technologies and placing a major emphasis on farm revenue, ICAR and SAUs should develop agricultural system models for varied socioeconomic and biophysical conditions.

To do this, it would be necessary to integrate technologies and best practises for production, protection, and post-harvest value addition for each subsystem with other subsystems, such as crop sequences, crop mix, livestock, horticulture, and forestry.

Such a change calls for the creation of an interdisciplinary strategy that integrates all disciplines.
A third of the rise in farmers’ income may readily be attributed to greater price realisation, efficient post-harvest management, competitive value chains, and the adoption of related activities.

On privately owned land, this calls for significant market, land-lease, and tree-planting adjustments.
Agriculture has suffered because of a lack of modern resources, including money and knowledge.
In order to attract moral private investments in production and market, agriculture needs to be liberalised.

Like FPOs, FPCs have a big role to play in promoting small farm companies.

The case for how agronomic practises like precision farming can dramatically boost farmers’ output and revenue is growing.

The same is true for cutting-edge machinery like laser land levellers, precision seeders, and planters, as well as modern agricultural practises like SRI (system of rice intensification), direct seeded rice, zero tillage, raised bed plantation, and ridge planting.

These publicly developed technologies have a very limited marketability, nonetheless.

They need to be extended significantly for farmers to embrace them.


Government should instead focus on improving infrastructure, reducing the distance between farmers and the market, implementing land reforms, changing policy to increase the flow of credit to farmers, establishing food-processing industries for perishable goods, building better irrigation facilities, etc. in order for agriculture to become a sustainable source of income.

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