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DAILY NEWS ANALYSIS

Monthly DNA

26 Apr, 2023

13 Min Read

Global Buddhist Summit

GS-I : Art and Culture Buddhism

Global Buddhist Summit

  • In order to improve diplomatic and cultural ties with other nations, the Ministry of Culture recently organised the First Global Buddhist Summit 2023 in collaboration with the International Buddhist Confederation (IBC).

About the summit

  • "Responses to Contemporary Challenges: Philosophy to Praxis" is the theme.
  • The Summit aims to bring together the leaders and scholars of the Buddhist Dhamma from across the world to discuss issues that are important to both Buddhism and humanity as a whole and to develop solutions for policy.

Highlights:

  • Eminent academics, Sangha leaders, and Dharma practitioners from all over the world participated in the Summit.
  • PM further presented 19 distinguished monks with monk robes (Chivar Dana).
  • The two-day Summit featured Buddhist monks from several nations.
  • International Dharma practitioners, leaders of the Sangha, and eminent scholars all attended the conference.
  • The summit's objectives are to address today's crucial international concerns and look for solutions in the Buddha Dhamma, which is founded on universal principles.
  • A forum for laity Buddhist scholars and Dharma Masters is intended to be established.
  • In order to work towards Universal Peace and Harmony in accordance with the core principles of Dharma, it aims to examine the Buddha's message of peace, compassion, and harmony. It also aims to produce a document for further academic research to examine its viability for use as a tool for conducting international relations on a global scale.

Relevance to India:

  • Given that Buddhism originated in India, this international summit will highlight the significance and importance of India in Buddhism.

  • This summit will also serve as a platform to strengthen diplomatic and cultural ties with other nations, particularly those that adhere to the Buddhist ethos.

  • The discussioommittee convened in 2011 at the India International Centre in New Delhi to lay the groundwork for the creation of the global Buddhist organisation.

  • In addition to giving the international Buddhist community a platform to disseminate its knowledge and actively engage in the continuing social and political conversation on a global scale, it serves to represent the rich diversity of Buddhism and to preserve and advance its common history.

The discussions were held under four themes:

  • Buddha Dhamma and Peace;
  • Buddha Dhamma: Environmental Crisis, Health and Sustainability;
  • Preservation of Nalanda Buddhist Tradition;
  • Buddha Dhamma Pilgrimage, Living Heritage and Buddha Relics: a resilient foundation to India’s centuries-old cultural links to countries in South, South-East and East Asia.

Buddhism

  • The founder of Buddhism was Siddhartha, also known as Gautama.Born: 563 BC at Lumbini, which is now in Nepal.

  • He was a kshatriya and belonged to an underprivileged gana called the Sakya gana.

  • He gave up his princely position and his belongings to pursue knowledge. He wandered for a while, meeting and conversing with other philosophers along the way.

  • He obtained enlightenment in Bodh Gaya, Bihar, under the peepal tree, and delivered his first sermon at Sarnath, close to Varanasi, where it is commemorated as Dharma-Chakra-Pravartana (the turning of the wheel of law).

  • Up until his death in Kusinara, he spent the remainder of his life walking from place to place and instructing people.

Teachings

  • Life is characterised by sorrow and unhappiness, according to the Buddha.
  • We have appetites and desires that are often unfulfillable, which is what causes this.
  • He also fostered in individuals a respect for other people's and animals' rights to life.
  • He held the view that both this life and the next are impacted by our acts' consequences, or karma.
  • In order for his message to be understood by everyone, the Buddha taught in the language of the common people, Prakrit.
Its Importance for Global Peace
  • The core of Buddhism is the idea of peace. The Buddha is hence referred to as the "Santiraja" or "king of peace."
  • Being a Buddhist requires maintaining a calm, trouble-free style of life called "samacariya," which directly translates to "a peaceful way of living with one's fellow beings."
  • The four infinite states (appamanna) of loving kindness (metta), compassion (karuna), sympathetic delight (mudita), and serenity (upekkha) are what the Buddha insisted his followers practise.
How does Buddhism fit into India's soft power strategy?
  • Buddhism has been utilised in India's soft power strategy in part through cultural diplomacy.
  • Through a variety of mediums, including art, music, films, literature, and festivals, this involves promoting Indian culture, including Buddhism.
  • As an illustration, the Indian Council for Cultural Relations (ICCR) has planned a number of cultural events in Buddhist nations including Sri Lanka, Myanmar, Thailand, and Bhutan in order to promote India's cultural history and fortify cultural connections.
  • Buddhism can also be incorporated into India's soft power strategy through capacity-building and education.
  • To advance Buddhist study and research, India has built a number of Buddhist institutions and centres of excellence, including the Nalanda University and the Central Institute of Higher Tibetan study.
  • The Dhamma Dipa International Buddhist University (DDIBU) in Tripura lay its cornerstone in 2022.
  • Through a number of initiatives, India has attempted to strengthen its bilateral relations with Buddhist nations like Sri Lanka, Myanmar, Thailand, Cambodia, and Bhutan.
  • To increase economic cooperation, India and Sri Lanka have signed a number of agreements, including the Bilateral Investment Promotion and Protection Agreement (BIPA).
International Buddhist Confederation
  • A working subcommittee convened in 2011 at the India International Centre in New Delhi to lay the groundwork for the creation of the global Buddhist organisation.
  • In addition to giving the international Buddhist community a platform to disseminate its knowledge and actively engage in the continuing social and political conversation on a global scale, it serves to represent the rich diversity of Buddhism and to preserve and advance its common history.

Read Also: All about Buddhism

Source: Press Information Bureau

India-UAE Food Security Partnership

GS-II : International Relations UAE

India-UAE Food Security Partnership

  • Due to its reliance on food imports, the UAE has set the objectives of achieving food availability and supply chain disaster preparedness. India, the world's second-largest food producer, is an important ally in the UAE's attempts to improve food security. Numerous points of convergence favour the partnership between India and the UAE for food security.
  • The United Arab Emirates (UAE), whose food security was based on imports from international markets, is now concentrating on the twin goals of food access and capability to deal with supply chain problems.

India's Potential in the International Agri-Export Market

  • Powerhouse of global agriculture exports :India's large arable land, pleasant climate, and expanding food production and processing sector have helped it become a global agri-export powerhouse.
  • The contribution of India to world food security: By providing food to underdeveloped nations on a humanitarian basis, India has shown how its position in enhancing regional and global food security is evolving.
  • international food industry: In order to maximise its agri-capabilities in the global food market, India has invested heavily in large food parks and set up its food sector to gain from bilateral trade agreements.

Indian domestic measures for food security

  • most significant programme for food subsidies in the world: The Public Distribution System, run by India, is the largest food subsidy programme in the world, providing approximately 800 million citizens with reduced grains for regular, cheap meals.
  • The Prime Minister of India's Overarching Scheme for Holistic Nutrition (POSHAN) Abhiyaan.The largest nutrition programme in the world for women and children.
  • Three Cs, for example: In order to address the three Cs of Covid, Conflict, and Climate concerns harmful to food security in India and around the world, India is promoting the consumption and farming of millets as part of its G-20 leadership.

How is India's partnership with the UAE for global food security being strengthened?

  • India has a strong hold on agri-exports because of its large amount of fertile land, suitable climate, and expanding food production and processing industry.
  • India has also contributed to humanitarian food aid to developing nations, illustrating its dedication to local and global food security.
  • Food Parks and Supply Chain Management: To take advantage of bilateral trade agreements, India has made enormous investments in food parks and cutting-edge supply chain management, demonstrating its commitment to dominating the world food industry.
  • Food corridor: The food corridor may start as a path for foods produced and processed in India, starting on the Indian coast of the Arabian Sea, travelling through the United Arab Emirates, and heading to significant global markets.
  • Industry growth for food processing: In addition to creating thousands of non-farm agri-jobs, the private sector projects in the UAE's agricultural and food processing sectors will also help farmers find higher prices for their goods.
  • alternative routes to the world market: With the support of the UAE's infrastructure, India's agricultural products will have more durable and diverse routes to the international market.
  • UAE's Investment: During the I2U2 Summit in 2022, the UAE has pledged to investing USD 2 billion in the development of food parks in India.
  • Agriota: The Dubai Multi Commodities Centre has introduced Agriota, an agri-trading and commodity platform that gives Indian farmers direct access to the Emirati markets and links them to the UAE's food ecosystem.

Significance: India's gateway to new markets:

  • In addition to sustaining and diversifying India's food reserves, the UAE's strategic location between Asia and Europe can act as its food export gateway to West Asia and Africa.
  • With the creation of non-farm agri-jobs and higher pricing for farmers' products, India stands to benefit from the private sector developments in the UAE.
  • Template for a Partnership for Global Food Security:
  • An excellent opportunity to highlight effective plans and frameworks for ensuring food security in the Global South is presented by India's G-20 presidency.
  • India, which sets the global development agenda, may take advantage of and strengthen trade relations with the UAE to create a sustainable, inclusive, effective, and resilient food future.

For UAE

  • Diversification of food reserves: To feed its people, the UAE mainly depends on food imports. UAE will be able to diversify its food supplies and become less reliant on a small number of nations for its food security thanks to the collaboration with India.
  • UAE's strategic location between Asia and Europe can be used to India's advantage as a food export hub for the wider West Asia and Africa region. This might strengthen the UAE's status as a regional food trade hub.
  • Investment opportunities: Through this agreement, UAE-based businesses may be able to participate in India's food and agricultural industry, including mega food parks, contract farming, and agro-commodity sourcing.
Significant Obstacles to Global Food Security
  • Climate Change Threat: According to the United Nations, the main causes of the rising food insecurity are climate change and extreme weather events.
  • Increased temperatures, weather variability, invasive plants and animals, and more frequent extreme weather events all have a negative impact on agriculture, resulting in lower agricultural yields, inferior produce with regard to nutrition, and lower farmer revenues.
  • Pricing in a Volatile Market: Although the idea of globalisation has made agricultural trade more open, it is unable to guarantee more stable market pricing.
  • Geopolitical tensions and trade disputes may lead to trade disruptions, such as bans, sanctions, and tariffs, which may have an impact on the supply and demand for food as well as the commerce in that commodity.
Conclusion
  • Both nations stand to gain from the India-UAE food security alliance, and the two countries' cooperation can provide answers to problems with food security in the Global South. The alliance can develop diversified routes to the global market, produce non-farm agri-jobs, and help farmers to get higher pricing for their goods thanks to the UAE's infrastructure and India's agricultural expertise.

Source: The Hindu

Ningaloo Eclipse

GS-I : Physical Geography Universe and Solar System

Ningaloo Eclipse

  • On April 20, 2023, people saw the Ningaloo Eclipse. Due to the curvature of the earth's surface and the transition from an annular to a total eclipse, it is a rare 'hybrid solar eclipse'.
  • The following one won't show up until 2031, the last of which was spotted in 2013.

What are the Key Aspects of the Hybrid Solar Eclipse?

  • Australia, Timor-Leste, and Indonesia's West and Papua provinces were able to see the total solar eclipse.
  • Southeast Asia, the East Indies, Australia, the Philippines, and New Zealand all witnessed a partial solar eclipse at the same time. India could not see it.
  • The region of western Australia from which the eclipse was best visible had already been given the name of Ningaloo due to its singularity.
  • Additionally, the Ningaloo region has been listed as a UNESCO World Heritage Site.

What is a Solar Eclipse?

  • A solar eclipse is a phenomena that happens when the Moon moves in front of the Sun and the Earth, creating a shadow on the planet's surface and temporarily dimming the Sun.
  • The umbra, or central zone, and the penumbra, or outside region, make up the moon's shadow.

types of solar eclipses:

  • Total Solar Eclipse: When the Moon passes directly between the Earth and the Sun, fully obstructing the Sun, a total eclipse occurs.
  • A total solar eclipse or annular solar eclipse causes a phenomena called the Baily's Beads effect, commonly referred to as the diamond ring effect.
  • An annular eclipse occurs when the Moon is furthest away from the Earth.
  • Only a tiny ring-like sliver of light emanating from the sun's disc is visible due to the way it is obscured. The ring of flames is the name for this structure.
  • When the Moon is partially eclipsed, it does so when it is partially aligned with the Sun when it passes between the Earth and the Sun.
  • So, only a portion of the Sun appears to be obscured.
  • Due to the viewer's position in relation to the Moon's shadow, a hybrid solar eclipse happens when the eclipse is total from certain spots on Earth but annular from others.

Source: Economic Times

Hakki Pikkis community

GS-I : Human Geography Migration

Hakki Pikkis community

  • The government is working to return members of the Hakki Pikki tribal community from Karnataka who are trapped in a violent region of Sudan.

About the Hakki Pikki Tribe

  • They are a semi-nomadic group that originally consisted of bird catchers and hunters; the words "bird" and "catchers" in Kannada are both used to describe them.
  • They reside primarily close to forested areas in a number of states in west and south India.
  • There are 11,892 Hakki Pikki people in Karnataka, according to the 2011 census.
  • They are thought to have been born in the bordering states of Gujarat and Rajasthan.
  • They go by different names depending on where they are, such as Mel-Shikari in Maharashtra and northern Karnataka.

Traditions

  • There are four clans among them: Gujaratia, Panwar, Kaliwala, and Mewaras.
  • In the old Hindu system, these clans correspond to castes.
  • There used to be a hierarchy among the clans, with the Mewaras at the bottom and the Gujaratia at the top.
  • Hakki Pikkis live according to Hindu customs and observe all Hindu holidays in Karnataka. They don't eat vegetables. In order to make himself more identifiable, a family's eldest son is not supposed to trim his hair.
  • The typical age of marriage is 18 for women and 22 for men, with cross-cousin unions preferred by the tribe. A dowry is given by the groom to the bride's family in this matriarchal society.

Migration Motives

  • The Hakki Pikkis used to live in forested areas, travelling for nine months out of the year before returning to their permanent camps for the remaining three.
  • However, as the laws governing wildlife protection tightened, the Hakki Pikkis of Karnataka began to market spices, herbal oils, and plastic flowers at neighbourhood temple fairs.
  • Approximately 20–25 years ago, Hakki Pikkis from Tamil Nadu visited Singapore, Thailand, and other locations to sell some marbles. During their travels, they learned that there was a significant market for Ayurvedic goods on the African continent.
  • Karnataka Hakki Pikkis followed them after they began marketing their goods in Africa.

Read Also: Community Forest Resource Rights

Source: Indian Express

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