UPSC Prelims 2018 Study Notes: 20 Most Important Government Programs (Part 1)

As UPSC Prelims 2018 approaches, it’s time to have a fair idea about the important schemes that the Government had introduced in the past year. Questions can be asked either on a single scheme or programme or as a match the following question where the aspirant needs to match schemes with objectives or schemes with targets or the year of establishment.

So, in a plethora of schemes being introduced with various acronyms, how to select and get to know the schemes are important from examination point of view. For this, the aspirants need to sort out schemes ministry wise and see where the allocation of funds is done. Although it’s not a hard and fast rule on fund allocation, it can be any one of the important criteria.

Based on the targets, fund allocation, and impact area, we have shortlisted the most important 20 Schemes which are recently in news and would be crucial for the exam. We will bring to you these schemes through two posts. Here’s the first 10.

1. Atal Bhujal Yojana

The Union Government has formulated ambitious water conservation scheme Atal Bhujal Yojana (ABY) to tackle ever-deepening crisis of depleting groundwater level.

Objective: to recharge ground water and create sufficient water storage for agricultural purposes.

Ministry: Ministry of Water Resources, River Development & Ganga Rejuvenation.

Funding: 6000 crores from Central government will be piloted. Central Government and World bank share 50:50.

Beneficiaries: Farmers and persons living in water stressed areas like Gujarat, Haryana, Karnataka, Maharashtra, Uttar Pradesh, Rajasthan and Madhya Pradesh.


  • This scheme will help those who are in need for constant ground water supply especially farmers.
  • Its focus is primarily on involvement of communities and convergence with different water schemes.
  • Its major component is making society responsible and bringing about behavior change to manage groundwater resource.
  • It also focuses on revival of surface water bodies so that ground water level can be increased, especially in the rural areas.


2. PMAY (Urban)

The Union Ministry of Housing and Urban Affairs has approved the construction of 1,86,777 more affordable houses under PMAY urban.

Objective: Construct two crore houses across the nation. Covers the entire urban area consisting of 4041 statutory towns with initial focus on 500 Class I cities.

Ministry: Ministry of Housing and Urban Affairs.

Funding: Centrally sponsored for Credit linked subsidy and as central sector Scheme for other components in 60:40 for states and 90:10 in Northeastern and Himalayan states.


  • Poor People (BPL)
  • Economically weaker Sections (EWS) and LIG
  • People under MIG (12 to 18lakh annual income)


  • PMAY(U) provide houses to all poor in urban areas by 2022. It is new version of Prime Minister’s Housing for All by 2022 vision.
  • Ownership of houses will be in the name of woman or jointly with husband.
  • Flexibility to States for choosing best options to meet the demand of housing in their states.
  • Central grant of Rs. one lakh per house, on an average, will be available under the slum rehabilitation programme.
  • Geo-tagging for monitoring the progress of construction of houses, Public Financial Management System (PFMS) to ensure electronic fund flow and Technology Sub-Mission to implement new construction technologies, have been introduced.
  • The latest approval takes total number of houses approved under PMAY to over 39.25 lakh

3. UDAN (Ude Desh ka Aam Naagrik)

The UDAN RCS (Regional Connectivity Scheme) was launched in October 2016 to develop the regional aviation market. It is a vital component of the National Civil Aviation Policy (NCAP), 2016

Objective: to make flying affordable by providing connectivity to un-served and under-served airports of the country through revival of existing airstrips and airports.

Ministry: Ministry of Civil Aviation

Funding: towards Value gap funding Centre and states in the ratio of 80:20 for normal states and 90:10 for northeastern states and union territories.

Beneficiaries: Common Man for flight journey and freight concession too.


  • The routes under phase-II were awarded to 15 airlines and helicopter operators.
  • Total 78 airports i.e. 36 served airports, 13 underserved airports and 29 unserved airports will be connected.
  • It is applicable on flights covering distance between 200 km and 800 km with no lower limit set for hilly, remote, island and security sensitive regions.
  • It seeks to reserve a minimum number of UDAN seats i.e. seats at subsidized rates and also cap fare for short distance flights.
  • It has Viability Gap Funding (VDF) mechanism to meet the VGF requirements under the scheme. Airports Authority of India (AAI) is implementing agency.


4. Intensified Mission Indradhanush

The Union Ministry of Health and Family Welfare has launched Intensified Mission Indradhanush (IMI) to accelerate full immunization coverage to more than 90% by December 2018.

Objective: IMI programme aims at reducing maternal and child mortality by reaching out to each and every child under two years of age and all pregnant women who have been left uncovered under routine immunization programme.

Ministry: Ministry of Health and Family Welfare.

Beneficiaries: Children below 2 years and pregnant women.

Funding: Central Scheme.


  • It includes diphtheria, whooping cough, tetanus, polio, tuberculosis, measles and hepatitis B.
  • Implementation of ‎IMI will be closely monitored at the district, state and central level at regular intervals.
  • ‎It would be reviewed by Cabinet Secretary at National level and will be monitored at highest level under a special initiative Proactive Governance and Timely Implementation (PRAGATI).
  • The Ministry will be technically supported by WHO, UNICEF, Rotary International and other donor partners.
  • It devises convergence mechanism of ground level workers of various departments like ANMs, Anganwadi workers, ASHAs, Zila preraks under National Urban Livelihood Mission (NULM), self-help groups for better coordination and effective implementation of the programme

5. Deendayal Upadhyay Gram Jyoti Yojana (DDUGJY)

It is the flagship programme of Ministry of Power to provide 24X7 power supply to rural areas

Objective: Providing electricity Connection to Below Poverty Line (BPL) families free of charge

Funding: 75 percent to normal states and 90 percent to special category states.

Ministry: Ministry of Power

Beneficiaries: Rural Population, Agriculture and irrigation activities, Discoms


  • Feeder separation (rural households & agricultural) and strengthening of sub transmission & distribution infrastructure.
  • Metering at all levels (input points, feeders and distribution transformers);
  • Micro grid and off grid distribution network.
  • Rural electrification
  • Rajiv Gandhi Grameen Vidyutikaran Yojana (RGGVY) has been subsumed in the new scheme as its rural electrification component.


6. Pradhan Mantri Surakshit Matritva Abhiyan

Crossed 1 crore mark in beneficiaries.

Objective: To provide assured, comprehensive and quality antenatal care, free of cost, universally to all pregnant women. To lower maternal Mortality rate.

Funding: From the existing budget sanctioned under NHM and states may incentivize ASHA workers.

Ministry: Ministry of Health and Family Welfare.

Beneficiaries: Pregnant women on 9th of every month.


  • Guarantees a minimum package of antenatal care services to women in their 2nd / 3rd trimesters of pregnancy at designated government health facilities.
  • minimum package of prenatal care/antenatal care services during pregnancy and medicines such as IFA supplements, calcium supplements.
  • special emphasis on early diagnosis, adequate and appropriate management of women with malnutrition and adolescent and early pregnancies
  • Aims to improve the quality and coverage of Antenatal Care (ANC) including diagnostics and counselling services as part of the Reproductive Maternal Neonatal Child and Adolescent Health (RMNCH+A) Strategy

7. National Nutrition Mission

The Union Cabinet has approved setting up of National Nutrition Mission (NNM) with a three-year budget of Rs.9046.17 crore commencing from 2017-18.

Objective: The programme through the targets will strive to reduce the level of stunting, under-nutrition, anemia and low birth weight babies.

Ministry: Ministry of Women and Child Development

Funding: Centre and States in the ratio of 60:40 and 90:10 for Himalayan and North Eastern States

Beneficiaries: Children from 0 to 6 years and lactating mothers.


  • Maps various Schemes addressing malnutrition
  • Introduces a very robust convergence mechanism
  • Monitors using ICT based Real Time Monitoring system
  • It eliminates registered used by AWWs
  • Measures height of children at the Anganwadi Centers (AWCs) regularly to keep a watch.
  • Sets up Nutrition Resource Centers, involving masses through Jan Andolan for their participation on nutrition through various activities.


8. e-NAM Portal

It is a pan-India electronic trading portal which networks the existing APMC mandis to create a unified national market for agricultural commodities.

Objective: to provide competitive and remunerative price to farmers for their produce through online competitive and transparent bidding process.


Funding: A central Sector Scheme Funded by Agri-Tech Infrastructure Fund (ATIF) which is set up through the Small Farmers Agribusiness Consortium (SFAC).

Beneficiaries: Farmers


  • NAM is a virtual market but it is connected to a physical market (mandi) at the back end and promotes genuine price discovery.
  • It integrates Central Farmer Database to increase the efficiency and reduce queue time.
  • Liberal licensing of traders and commission agents by state authorities and one license for a trader is valid across all markets in the state.
  • Single point levy on the first wholesale purchase from the farmer
  • Soil Testing Laboratories available in the mandis itself
  • It will also ensure open price discovery and better returns to farmers.

9. Bharatmala Pariyojan

The Union Government has announced to build 83,677km of roads, highways, greenfield expressways and bridges with investment of Rs.6.92 lakh crore in next five years i.e. by 2022. The first phase of this ambitious project includes Bharatmala Pariyojan.

Objective: To optimize efficiency of movement of goods and people across the country


Funding: Of total Rs.5,35,000 crore, Rs, 2.09 lakh crore as debt from market, Rs 1.06 lakh crore through public-private partnership (PPP) mode and remaining Rs. 2.19 lakh crore from Central Road Funds, Toll-Operate-Maintain-Transfer monetization proceeds and toll collections.


  • BharatMala Pariyojana involves construction of 34,800 km highways by 2022.
  • It will generate 14.2 crore man-days of jobs
  • The BharatMala project will include economic corridors (9,000 km), inter-corridor and feeder route (6,000 km), national corridors efficiency improvement (5,000 km), border roads and international connectivity (2,000 km), coastal roads and port connectivity (2,000 km) and greenfield expressways (800 km)
  • Roads will be built along borders with Bhutan and Nepal, bottlenecks on existing Golden Quadrilateral highway network will be removed.
  • The project will be executed through Ministry of Road, Transport and Highways (MoRTH), NHAI, National Highways and Infrastructure Development Corporation Limited (NHIDCL) and State Public Works Department (PWDs)

10. E-rakam Portal

The Union Government has launched e-Rashtriya Kisan Agri Mandi (e-RaKAM) portal.

Objective: To provide a platform for selling Agriculture Produce.

Beneficiaries: Farmers from the smallest villages to the biggest markets of the world.

Targets: e-RaKAM is a first of its kind initiative that leverages technology to connect farmers from the smallest villages to the biggest markets of the world.

Project: e-RaKAM is a digital initiative that aims to bring together the farmers, PSUs, civil supplies and buyers on a single platform to ease the selling and buying process of agricultural products.

It has been developed by state-run-auctioneer MSTC Limited and CRWC (Central Railside Warehouse Company) Limited.

Under this initiative, e-RaKAM centers are being developed throughout the country in a phased manner to facilitate farmers for online sale of their produce

The farmers will be paid through e-Payment directly into their bank accounts under the e-RaKAM initiative.


Sample Questions

a) Find the correct statements about National Nutrition Mission

1.National Nutrition Mission was launched on International Women’s Day.

2.It has been sanctioned a budget of 9046 crores for a period of 5 years.

3.There is no real time ICT based monitoring mechanism.

4.Objective of the Scheme is to strive to reduce the level of stunting, under-nutrition, anemia and low birth weight babies.

A. 1,2,3 are true

B. 2,3,4 are true

C. 1 and 3 are true

D. 1 and 4 are true

Answer: D

Statements 1 and 4 are true

Statement 2 is false because the period is 3 years not 5 years. Statement 3 is false because real time monitoring mechanism exists.

b) ATAL BHUJAL YOJANA involving societies at ground level was introduced by

A. Ministry of Women and child Development

B. Ministry of Rural Development and drinking Water

C. Ministry of Commerce

D. Ministry of Water Resources, River Development & Ganga Rejuvenation

Answer: D

c) MINISTRY OF ROAD TRANSPORT AND HIGHWAYS have recently introduced a scheme costing 535000 crores for connecting India. Which of the following is the scheme?

A. Bharat Darshan

B. Sagarmala

C. Bharatmala Pariyojan

D. Pradhan Mantri Gram Sadak yozana

Answer: C

These are few of the important Schemes which had a significant budget allocations and attention by the government in the last financial year and the present. Some of the Schemes have been modified or the targets revised and for some next phase with some alterations have been done which will be covered in the second part.

Do practice questions and revise the schemes comparing the other schemes in the same ministry so that one can remember the targets and objectives.

Stay tuned for the second part of the Schemes!


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