Source – The Hindu.


Phase-II of the ‘Atal Jyoti Yojana’ (AJAY) was launched by the government.


• To provide ‘Solar Street Lighting Systems’ for public use like lighting roads, bus stops etc and improvement in security & safety through better lightening.

Intended Beneficiary
• States of Uttar Pradesh, Bihar, Jharkhand, Odisha & Assam• Hilly States of Jammu & Kashmir, Himachal Pradesh & Uttarakhand• North Eastern States including Sikkim• Island of Andaman & Nicobar and Lakshadweep• Aspirational Districts of other states.

Salient Features
• It is a sub scheme Under Off –grid and Decentralized Solar Thermal Application scheme of Ministry of New and Renewable Energy & Energy Efficiency Services limited (EESL) is its implementing agency. 

• It will cover rural, semi urban and urban areas.

• Solar Street Light with LED capacity of 12 W will be provided as per MMRE specification in areas which do not enjoy adequate coverage of power.

• 75% of the cost of Lighting systems through MNRE budget, and the remaining 25% would be provided from MPLADS Funds, Panchayat Funds or Municipalities and other Urban Local Bodies (ULBs) Funds.

• Training programmes for maintenance and protection for wide dissemination and to popularize solar technology.


Regional Conference on the scheme was held.


• To create an enabling environment to ensure equal opportunities, equity, social justice and empowerment of persons with disabilities.

• To encourage voluntary action for ensuring effective implementation of the Rights of Persons with Disabilities Act, 2016.

Salient Features
• It is a Central Sector Scheme of Government of India.

• Implemented by Department of Empowerment of Persons with Disabilities, Ministry of Social Justice & Empowerment.

• Provides financial assistance to facilitate delivery of various services to voluntary organizations’ grants-in-aid to NGOs.

• Promotes voluntary action: parents/guardians and voluntary organisations are encouraged to provide rehabilitation services. 

• To make available the whole range of services necessary for rehabilitation of persons with disabilities 

  1.  Including early intervention
  2.  Development of daily living skills, educationo
  3.  Skill-development oriented towards employability
  4.  Training and awareness generation.


The Ministry of Civil Aviation awarded routes to airlines under the third phase of the scheme.


• Facilitate / stimulate regional air connectivity by making it affordable by supporting airline operation through 

  1. Concessions by Central Government,State Governments and airport operators 
  2. Financial (Viability Gap Funding or VGF) support

Salient Features
• It is under the Ministry of Civil Aviation and the Airports Authority of India is the implementing authority. 

• It is a key component of National Civil Aviation Policy.

• It has a unique market-based model to develop regional connectivity. 

• Provides connectivity to un-served and under-served airports of the country through revival of existing air-strips and airports.

• Inclusion of Tourism Routes in coordination with the Ministry of Tourism.

• Inclusion of Seaplanes for connecting Water Aerodromes.

• Bringing in a number of routes in the North-East Region under the ambit of UDAN.

• Helicopter routes are not considered under the UDAN 3 bidding.

• It will be applicable on flights which cover distance between 200 km and 800 km with no lower limit set for hilly, remote, island and security sensitive regions. 

• Airlines have to provide a minimum of 9 and a maximum of 40 UDAN Seats (subsidized rates).

• The Centre will subsidize the losses incurred by airlines flying out of dormant airports. 

About 80% of the subsidy will be collected by charging a levy of up to ₹8,500 on each departing flight of domestic airlines and the rest 20% will come from the respective state governments.

• Provide VGF for operators who cap fares on regional flights at ₹2,500/ hour of flying with proportionate pricing for routes of different stage lengths/flight duration. 

• Regional Connectivity Fund would be created to meet the viability gap funding requirements under the scheme.

The partner State Governments (other than NE States and UT where contribution will be 10 %) would contribute a 20% share to this fund. 

• The scheme would be in operation for a period up to 10 years.

• State governments will have to provide free security and fire service, utilities at concessional rates and reduce VAT on Aviation Turbine Fuel to 1 percent. No landing charges, parking charges and Terminal Navigation Landing Charges will be imposed for RCS flights 

• 2 international flights has been started from Guwahati under the International Air Connectivity Scheme (ICAS-Udan) (no capping on funds/prices under this, it will be market driven)


• It is an umbrella scheme for 5 central sector schemes (100% funding from center) including Swastha Nagrik Abhiyan (For dissemination of information on health issues to create awareness among citizens), Free Supply of Contraceptives, Social Marketing of Contraceptives, MIS Scheme now proposed as Health Surveys and Health Research and Population Research Centres.

• Components of, Social Marketing of Contraceptives, Free Supply of Contraceptives are specifically targeted towards low income group people. However, the overall scheme is not restricted to any particular group or category and has a mandate to cover the population throughout India.