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08 June, 2020

29 Min Read

GS-I : Art and Culture Art and Culture
Archaeological Survey of India

Archaeological Survey of India


Union Minister for Culture & Tourism (I/C) Shri Prahlad Singh Patel announced that Culture Ministry has approved opening of 820 centrally protected monuments under the Archeological Survey of India which have places of worship from 8th June, 2020. Shri Patel also said that all the protocols issued by the MHA and the Health ministry will be followed in these monuments.

About ASI

  • The Archaeological Survey of India is an attached office of the Ministry of Culture.
  • Under the provisions of the AMASR Act of 1958(The Ancient Monuments and Archaeological Sites and Remains Act (or AMASR Act)), the ASI administers more than 3650 ancient monuments, archaeological sites and remains of national importance.
  • These can include everything from temples, mosques, churches, tombs, and cemeteries to palaces, forts, step-wells, and rock-cut caves.
  • The Survey also maintains ancient mounds and other similar sites which represent the remains of ancient habitation.
  • It was founded in 1861 by Alexander Cunningham who also became its first Director-General.
  • The rules stipulate that area in the vicinity of the monument, within 100 metres is prohibited area.
  • The area within 200 meters of the monument is regulated category.
  • Any repair or modifications of buildings in this area requires prior permission

Definition of Ancient Monument under AMASR Act,1958

Ancient Monument means any structure, erection or monument, or any tumulus or place of interment, or any cave, rock-sculpture, inscription or monolith which is of historical, archaeological or artistic interest and which has been in existence for not less than 100 years

Monument of National Importance

A "Monument of National Importance" is designated by the Archaeological Survey of India and includes the following:

  1. The remains of an ancient monument
  2. The site of an ancient monument
  3. The land on which there are fences or protective covering structures for preserving the monument
  4. Land by means of which people can freely access the monument

Source: PIB

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GS-IV : Ethics Ethical issues
Profit, not profiteering

Profit, not profiteering

GS-IV Ethics

States have done well to step in to regulate charges for COVID-19 care in private hospitals

The role of the state as a big brother is problematic, and yet only a vigilant, just state can temper the avaricious excesses in the society it governs. The move by certain States to regulate hospital fees charged in the private sector for COVID-19 care falls square in this category. Bombarded with reports about exorbitant bills being raised in the private sector for hospital care of persons who tested positive for COVID-19, a few States decided to get involved, rightly so, and set a cap on the tariff that can be charged by private hospitals.

  • In some instances, the Indian Medical Association also prayed for intervention by the government to regulate this.
  • Maharashtra was the first to fix a tariff, followed by Gujarat and Tamil Nadu, three of the States seeing a high number of COVID-19 infections.
  • For the initial part of the epidemic, it was the State that was the primary testing agent and care giver, for all COVID-19 cases.
  • At that stage, few private hospitals, if any, were in the front line of the battle. All tests were initially done by the government, and anyone who tested positive was shifted to a government hospital for isolation and treatment.
  • However, as the number of cases increased, naturally calling all hands to the deck meant the significant involvement of the private sector. Complaints of overcharging followed.
  • Media reports revealed differential rates across the country, but costs were upwards of ?7 lakh for a minimum 14-day period of hospitalisation, even for mildly symptomatic or asymptomatic patients. If intensive care unit care is warranted, then the rates would be much higher.

Way Forward

  • The state’s intervention could not have been delayed any further. In fact, in retrospect, the strategy employed by the Central government to cap the price of tests for COVID-19 at ?4,500 in private labs could have been used to regulate private hospitals’ charges too.
  • Hospitals have been graded into categories, depending on facilities provided, with reasonable rates fixed per day for each category. ICU rates are naturally higher, and States have specified that private hospitals should follow the tariff for beds or they could be charged for violations.
  • Making it a participatory process, the private sector was also co-opted into discussions on tariff. Tamil Nadu has also fixed a separate tariff for beneficiaries under the Chief Minister’s Comprehensive Health Insurance Scheme (now subsumed under the Central Insurance scheme) making it easy for patients from lower income groups to access private care treatments for COVID-19.
  • It has also re-fixed the rate for testing in a private lab at ?3,000 per test. Further watchfulness should continue on the part of the State, but shorn of high-handedness.
  • Staying alive to the hardships of its people, it must ensure ?that the harsh times are not further exacerbated by profiteering.

Source: TH

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GS-II : International Relations International terrorism
Global Terrorism Index

Global Terrorism Index

The Global Terrorism Index (GTI) is a report published annually by the Institute for Economics and Peace (IEP). Two third of the countries experienced a terrorist attack in 2016.

India is one among the ten most impacted countries by terrorism. Five countries account for three quarters of all deaths from terrorism: Iraq, Afghanistan, Syria, Nigeria and Pakistan. The major reason for terrorism in most impacted countries is internal conflict.

Source: TH

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GS-I : Human Geography Current mapping upsc


Maldives is facing a constitutional and political crisis with is government is against the judiciary, polity and a section bureaucracy. It is a south Asian island country located in the Arabian sea part of Indian ocean.

The Maldives archipelago is located atop the Chagos-Maldives-Laccadive Ridge, a vast submarine mountain range in the Indian Ocean. Maldives is a founding member of the SAARC. It is also a part of the United Nations and Organization of Islamic Cooperation.

Source: TH

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Task force on artificial intelligence

Task force on artificial intelligence

The Department of Defence Production constituted a task force headed by Tata Sons Chairman N Chandrasekaran to study use of artificial intelligence.

It has potential to provide military superiority apart from driving technology-driven economic growth. Similarly, in 2017, the then Commerce and Industry minister constituted the ‘Task force on AI for India’s Economic Transformation’ chaired by V. Kamakoti of IIT Madras.

Note: https://www.aspireias.com/daily-news-analysis-current-affairs/Regulating-Artificial-Intelligence-AI

Source: TH

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National River Conservation Plan

National River Conservation Plan

Under the National River Conservation Plan the river Sal project in Goa was sanctioned by the Ministry of Environment, Forest & Climate Change. The aim of the plan is to prevent pollution of rivers and improving water quality.

The activities under National River Conservation Plan include following

  • Sewage treatment plants for treating the diverted sewage.
  • Low cost sanitation works to prevent the open defecation on riverbanks.
  • Public awareness and public participation.
  • Electric crematoria to ensure proper cremation of the bodies brought to burning Ghats.

Source: IE

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GS-I : Art and Culture Art and Culture
Sheen Khalai (Blue Skin)

Sheen Khalai (Blue Skin)

It is an Afghan community in India who fled with their families from the tribal areas between Afghanistan and Pakistan during the Partition in 1947. The women are part of a community of Pushtun Hindus that lived in the Baloch areas and belong to the Kakari tribes still living in afghan.

Pushtunsare an Iranic ethnic group who mainly live in Pakistan and Afghanistan. They speak the Pashto language and adhere to Pashtunwali, which is a traditional set of ethics guiding individual and communal conduct.

Source: TH

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GS-III : Economic Issues Economic Data


India’s first sentiment index for micro and small enterprises ( MSEs) developed jointly by CRISIL & SIDBI here today. CriSidEx is a composite indexmeasures MSE business sentiment. Its readings will flag potential headwinds and changes in production cycles and thus help improve market efficiencies.

Source: TH

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GS-I : Human Geography Indian Geography
Rabi Crops Sowing

Rabi Crops Sowing

The area under the sowing reached 324 lakh hectares. The word ‘rabi’ in Arabic means winter. Rabi crops are sown in winter from October to December and harvested in summer from April to June.

Some of the important rabi crops are wheat, barley, peas, gram and mustard. Punjab, Haryana, Himachal Pradesh, Jammu and Kashmir, Uttarakhand and Uttar Pradesh are important for the production of rabi crops. Western temperate cyclones during winter provides the precipitation in these areas. Fog is good for these crops.

Source: TH

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GS-III : Economic Issues FSSAI
FSSAI for Nutritional and Safe Food

FSSAI for Nutritional and Safe Food

Food Safety and Standards Authority of India (FSSAI) has developed science-based standards for various categories of food products to ensure availability of safe and wholesome food in the country.

FSSAI has introduced +F Logo for fortified foods.

To promote awareness among consumers on Nutrition, mandatory labelling requirements for pre-packaged foods, is prescribed. FSSAI has also undertaken ‘Safe and Nutritious Food (SNF)’ initiative to promote awareness towards consumption of safe and nutritious food.

Source: TH

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GS-I : Human Geography Inland Waterways
Inland Waterways Authority of India (IWAI)

Inland Waterways Authority of India (IWAI)

IWAI signed an project agreement with the world bank for the Jal Marg Vikas on Ganga (NW1). The IWAIcame into existence for development and regulation of inland waterways for shipping and navigation.

Functions of IWAI with respect to National Waterways

  • Survey
  • Navigation, Infrastructure and Regulations
  • Fairway Development
  • Pilotage
  • Coordination of IWT with other modes

Read also: https://www.aspireias.com/daily-news-analysis-current-affairs/Jal-Marg-Vikas-Project-Inland-waterways

Source: TH

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World Wetlands Day

World Wetlands Day

Feburary 2nd of every year is celebrated as world wetlands day, marking the adoption of Ramsar Convention on Wetlands. The MoEF&CC in collaboration with Department of Forests, Assam government is organizing the national-level celebration of World Wetlands Day (WWD) at DeeporBeel, a Ramsar Site in Guwahati,Assam. The theme ‘Wetlands for a sustainable urban future’ marks the role of healthy wetlands play in making cities and towns liveable.

Ramsar Convention on Wetlands

  • The Convention was adopted in 1971 at the Iranian City of Ramsar.
  • It is an intergovernmental treaty that provides the framework for national action and international cooperation for the conservation and wise use of wetlands and their resources.
  • India is a party to the Convention since 1982.
  • The Ministry of Environment, Forest and Climate Change is the nodal Ministry for wetlands conservation in India.
  • Wetlands in India account for 4.7% of the total geographical area

Source: IE

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GS-I : Art and Culture Art and Culture
Shigmo Festival

Shigmo Festival

Shigmo is the traditional spring festival celebrated by farmers in rural Goa. It is an annual float parade held in major cities of the state.

The Goan folk art such as GhodeModni, Goff, and Fugdi are performed. It was traditionally celebrated as the homecoming of the warriors who had left their homes and families at the end of Dusshera to fight invaders.

Source: Web

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