Daily Current Affairs : 19th and 20th September 2023

Daily Current Affairs for UPSC CSE

Topics Covered

  1. Women’s Reservation Bill
  2. India – Canada Relationship
  3. Khalistan Issue
  4. Facts for Prelims

1 . Women’s Reservation Bill

Context: The Union Cabinet Monday cleared the Women’s Reservation Bill (WRB) in a key meeting chaired by Prime Minister Narendra Modi, reports said.  

Historical Background of Women’s Reservation Bill

  • First attempt: United Front Govt: The Constitution (Eighty-first Amendment) Bill, 1996 (insertion of new Articles 330A and 332A) was first introduced in the Lok Sabha on September 12, 1996. The Bill was referred to a Joint Committee. JC proposed seven key suggestions for amending a Bill.
    • Recommended changing the wording from “not less than one third” to “as nearly as may be, one-third” to eliminate ambiguity regarding women’s reservation.
    • Advocated for reserving seats for women in the Rajya Sabha and Legislative Councils.
    • Suggested considering reservation benefits for Other Backward Classes (OBCs) at an appropriate time.
    • Recommended a 15-year period for reservation provisions in the Lok Sabha and state Assemblies, subject to review for continuation.
    • Proposed rotation of nominated members from the Anglo-Indian community to include women.
    • Addressed reservations for Scheduled Castes (SCs) and Scheduled Tribes (STs) in states with “less than three seats” through a rotation policy, reserving one seat in the first term, another in the second term, and leaving them unreserved in the third term.
  • The Bill was taken up for discussion in the Lok Sabha on May 16, 1997 but there was stiff opposition from within the ruling coalition.  The UF government could not pass the Bill and it lapsed after the dissolution of this Lok Sabha. 
  • Second attempt: NDA govt: Between 1998 and 2004, the BJP-led NDA government headed by Atal Bihari Vajpayee tried to get the Bill passed multiple times but could not succeed despite support from the Congress and the Left, the main Opposition parties at the time. In July 2003, the then Speaker Manohar Joshi convened an all-party meeting to try and build a consensus but was unsuccessful. The Bill subsequently lapsed. 
  • UPA pushes the Bill: The Bill sought to reserve, as nearly as may be, one third seats of the Lok Sabha and Legislative Assembly for women and provide one-third the number of seats reserved for the SCs and STs in the Lok Sabha and state Assemblies for women of those categories.  In 2008, the UPA government finally introduced the Bill on May 6, 2008 which was later referred to the Parliamentary Standing Committee. The committee, which submitted its report to Parliament in December 2009, recommended that the Bill be passed in its present form without any delay. Like the Mukherjee panel, it also suggested that the government should consider the demand for reservation within reservation for OBC women and some minorities at an appropriate time.  After two days of spirited discussion, the Rajya Sabha, on March 9, 2010, passed the Bill by over a two-third majority — the BJP and the Left, who were in the Opposition, supported it — with 186 in favour and one opposing vote coming from farm leader Sharad Joshi. The UPA government, however, did not show the political will to get the Bill passed in the Lok Sabha despite the BJP and the Left supporting it. In 2011, Speaker Meira Kumar convened an all-party meeting to break the deadlock, but in vain. 

Key features of the 2023 bill

  • Reservation for women: The Bill reserves, as nearly as may be, one-third of all seats for women in Lok Sabha, state legislative assemblies, and the Legislative Assembly of the National Capital Territory of Delhi.  This will also apply to the seats reserved for SCs and STs in Lok Sabha and states legislatures.   
  • Commencement of reservation: The reservation will be effective after the census conducted after the commencement of this Bill has been published.   Based on the census, delimitation will be undertaken to reserve seats for women.  The reservation will be provided for a period of 15 years.   However, it shall continue till such date as determined by a law made by Parliament.  
  • Rotation of seats: Seats reserved for women will be rotated after each delimitation, as determined by a law made by Parliament.   

Key changes between 2008 Bill and Bill introduced in 2023

  • The 2008 bill states that One-third of Lok Sabha seats in each state/UT to be reserved for women, while the 2023 bill states that “One-third seats to be reserved for women.”  
  • About rotation of seats, the 2008 bill states- Reserved seats to be rotated after every general election to Parliament/legislative assembly, while the 2023 bill states- Reserved seats to be rotated after every delimitation exercise.  

Rotating constituencies

  • The Bill states that reserved seats shall be allotted by rotation after every delimitation exercise. 
  •  This implies rotation approximately every 10 years as after 2026 delimitation is mandated to take place after every census. 
  • Rotation of reserved seats may reduce the incentive for MPs to work for their constituencies as they could be ineligible to seek re-election from that constituency. 
  • A study by the Ministry of Panchayati Raj recommended that rotation of constituencies should be discontinued at the panchayat level because almost 85% women were first-timers and only 15% women could get re-elected because the seats they were elected from were de-reserved.

Need for the Bill

  • Lower Women’s participation- It is reported that the participation of women in the lower house of parliament, that is, the Lok Sabha and all other state assemblies, is meagre compared to men. To promote women as ministers, the bill was laid before the parliament. 
  • Currently, there are only 15% women MPs in the 17th Lok Sabha and 12.2% women MPs in the Rajya Sabha. This is lower than the global average of 25.5%. Only 8% of the total MLAs are women across all States in India. 
  • Effective administration- It is experienced that women working in the positions of Panchayati Raj have worked effectively. 
  • Gender discrimination- Due to high competition, women often are not able to fight for the election with men. Reserving seats will allow women to stand with men in the elections or get nominated. 
  • Augment women’s role in society: One of the key arguments in favour of the bill is that affirmative action is needed to better the condition of women in Indian society. 
  • Women in decision-making: Another key argument is that women’s representation is needed in the decision-making process to address issues such as the high percentage of crimes against women, low participation of women in the workforce, low nutrition levels, and a skewed sex ratio. 


  • Perpetuate the stereotype: Opponents argue that it would perpetuate the unequal status of women since they would not be perceived to be competing on merit.  
  • Restricts choice: Reservation of seats in Parliament restricts choice of voters to women candidates. Therefore, some experts have suggested alternate methods such as reservation in political parties and dual member constituencies. 
  • Reduced incentive :Rotation of reserved constituencies in every election may reduce the incentive for an MP to work for his constituency as he may be ineligible to seek re-election from that constituency. 
  • Diversion from larger issues: This policy diverts attention from the larger issues of electoral reform such as criminalisation of politics and inner party democracy. 
  • Heterogeneity : Women are not a homogeneous community, such as a caste group. 
  • Violation of Constitutional Principles: Another argument states that reserving seats for women would violate the Constitution’s guarantee of equality. 
  • Question on Feasibility in Rajya Sabha: Many also argue that it is not possible to reserve seats in Rajya Sabha due to the existing system of elections to the upper house. The Rajya Sabha MPs are elected through a single transferable vote, which means that the votes are first allocated to the most preferred candidate, and then to the next preferred candidate, and so on.  

Alternate methods of representation

  • Two alternatives have been suggested by some experts:
    • Reservation for candidates within political parties (as some countries like Sweden, Norway, UK and France do)
    • Dual member constituencies where some constituencies shall have two candidates, one being a woman. 
  • Initially, India had multi-member constituencies which included an SC/ST member.  A 1961 Act converted all constituencies into single member constituencies. The reasoning was that the constituencies were too large and SC/ST members felt that they would gain in importance in single-member reserved constituencies. 

2 . India – Canada Relationship

Context: India rejected the Canadian allegation of involvement by the Government of India in the killing of a prominent Khalistani separatist leader “on Canadian soil”. It was in June that Khalistan Tiger Force chief Hardeep Singh Nijjar was gunned down by unidentified assailants in the Surrey city of Canada.

Background of the relationship

  • India established diplomatic relations with Canada in 1947. India and Canada have longstanding bilateral relationship based on shared democratic values, the multi-cultural, multi-ethnic and multi- religious nature of two societies and strong people-to-people contacts.
  • In recent years, both countries have been working to enhance bilateral cooperation in a number of areas of mutual importance. Several high level visits have been exchanged during recent years including at PM levels: Prime Minister Stephen Harper of Canada visited India in 2009 and 2012; Dr. Manmohan Singh, Prime Minister of India visited Canada in 2010. 

Areas of cooperation

  • Political relations : In Canada, India is represented by the High Commission of India in Ottawa and the Consulate General of India in Toronto and Vancouver. In India, Canada is represented by the Canadian High Commission in New Delhi; the Consulate General of Canada in Chandigarh, Chennai, Mumbai and a Consulate in Bangalore. 
    • They pursue bilateral relations through the mechanisms of annual Foreign Office Consultations, Strategic Dialogue, Joint Working Group on Counter-terrorism, Science & Technology Committee, Environment Forum, Energy Forum, Steering Committee on Mining and Earth Sciences; Joint Working Groups on ICTE, Education, Pulses, Plant Protection, Health, Agriculture and SPS issues etc. 
    • India and Canada have signed several agreements including the Air Services Agreement, Extradition Treaty, Mutual Legal Assistance Treaty, Agreement on Patents, Agreement on Cooperation in Agriculture, Agreement on Science and Technology and Environment Cooperation, Nuclear Cooperation Agreement, Social Security Agreement, MOU on Cooperation in Energy, MOU on cooperation in Mining and Earth Sciences, MOU on Cooperation in Higher Education, MOU on Cultural Cooperation, MOU on Cooperation in Intelligent Transport Systems and MOU on Cooperation in ICTE. 
  • Commercial Relations: The India Canada CEOs Roundtable has been upgraded to a CEOs Forum. An annualized Trade Ministers dialogue has been institutionalized to review trade and economic relations. Both sides are engaged in technical negotiations for a Comprehensive Economic Partnership Agreement (CEPA) including trade in goods, services, investment, trade facilitation etc. Separate MOUs exist with implementation mechanisms to advance relations in the fields of energy, mining, agriculture etc. Air India (currently suspended) and Jet Airways operate air services to Canada. State Bank of India, ICICI Bank, Government of India Tourist Office, Air India and Jet Airways has offices in Canada. Many renowned Indian companies have presence in Canada such as Tata, Aditya Birla, Reliance, Wipro, Infosys, TCS, Essar, etc. 
  • Cultural Relations : Year of India 2011 in Canada (YOI): Pursuant to the announcement made by Indian and Canadian Prime Ministers in November 2009, the Year of India 2011 was organized in different cities of Canada which included multi sectoral events such as cultural shows, Writers festivals, film festivals, food festivals, trade shows, Education Summit, Innovation Summit, PBD-Canada, LKA’s Moderns Exhibition, Eminent lecture series, installation of Gandhi statues, Tagore anniversary etc. 
  • Education: Shastri Indo-Canadian Institute (SICI) was founded in 1968 to promote academic relations mainly through funding research and linking academic institutions in the two countries; as of today, 50 universities from India and 40 from Canada are members of the Institute. SICI broadly meets its objective by promoting Canadian Studies in India and Indian Studies in Canada. 
  • Trade and economy: The two-way trade has increased from C$ 4.2 billion (US$ 3.21 bn approx.) in 2010 to C$8.02 billion(US $6.05 bn approximately) in 2016, but does not reflect the true potential. India accounts for only 1.95% of Canada’s global trade. Major items of India exports to Canada include gems, jewellary and precious stones, pharmaceutical products, readymade garments, textiles, organic chemicals, light engineering goods, iron & steel articles, etc. India’s import from Canada include pulses, newsprint, wood pulp, asbestos, potash, iron scrap, copper, minerals and industrial chemicals, etc. 
  • Cooperation in Energy sectors: Nuclear Energy: The Nuclear Cooperation Agreement (NCA), which was signed in June 2010, came into force in September 2013.The Appropriate Arrangement (AA) for the NCA was signed in March 2013, under which a Joint Committee on Civil Nuclear Cooperation was constituted. On 15thApril 2015, the Department of Atomic Energy signed a $350 million contract with Cameco, a Saskatoon-based company, to purchase 7 million pounds of uranium concentrate over the next 5 years. The first shipment arrived in India in December 2015. 
  • Research : IC-IMPACTS (the India-Canada Centre for Innovative Multidisciplinary Partnerships to Accelerate Community Transformation and Sustainability), which is a Canada-India Research Centre of Excellence dedicated to the development of research collaborations between Canada and India, seeks to bring together researchers, industry innovators, community leaders, government agencies, and community organizations from across India and Canada to work together to find solutions to the key challenges facing the communities. IC-IMPACTS is working with the National Mission for Clean Ganga to find innovative technological solutions to clean the river Ganga. 
  • S&T and Space: India and Canada have been cooperating since 1990s in the areas of space science, earth observation, satellite launch services and ground support for space missions. ISRO and CSA (Canadian Space Agency) have signed MOUs for cooperation in the field of exploration and utilization of outer space and two Implementation Arrangements specifically addressing satellite tracking and space astronomy. ANTRIX, the Commercial arm of ISRO, has launched nine nanosatellite under a commercial arrangement with University of Toronto – Institute of Aerospace Studies (UTIAS).ANTRIX also launched a microsatellite SAPPHIRE (commercial contract with MacDonald, Dettwiler& Associates (MDA), Canada and NEOSSat (contract with Microsat Systems, Canada) as auxiliary satellites on the Polar Satellite Launch Vehicle (PSLV-C20) in February 2013.The PSLV-C23, which was launched in June 2014 carried two Canadian satellites, CanX-4 and CanX-5, from the University of Toronto’s Institute for Aerospace Studies Space Flight Laboratory. 


  • Khalistan Issue: The Khalistan issue, related to Sikh separatism, has historically strained relations. Some Sikh separatist groups in Canada have advocated for the creation of an independent Sikh state, Khalistan, which India views as a threat to its territorial integrity. This issue has led to occasional tensions and disagreements. 
  • Trade Barriers: Trade relations between India and Canada have faced hurdles, including non-tariff barriers and regulatory issues. Both countries have had differences over agricultural products, intellectual property rights, and market access. 
  • Visa and Immigration Policies: Changes in visa and immigration policies by both countries have impacted the movement of people, including students and skilled professionals. Canada’s decision to impose travel restrictions on Indian students during the COVID-19 pandemic was a source of concern for India. 
  • Human Rights Concerns: Differences in perspectives on human rights issues have at times led to disagreements. Canada has raised concerns about human rights in India, particularly regarding the treatment of religious and ethnic minorities, which India views as interference in its internal affairs. 
  • Foreign Policy Alignment: India and Canada have not always aligned on key international issues. Their stances on matters like climate change, UN reforms, and the Israel-Palestine conflict have varied, which can impact their cooperation on the global stage. 
  • Energy and Environment: Canada is a significant producer of oil and natural gas, while India has been working to reduce its carbon footprint. Balancing energy needs and environmental concerns can lead to differences in approach. 
  • Economic Disparities: Canada is a high-income country, while India is still classified as a developing nation. Economic disparities can affect negotiations on trade and investment agreements. 
  • Competing Alliances: Both countries are part of different international alliances and groupings, which can sometimes lead to differing priorities and interests in global affairs. 

3 . Khalistan issue

Context: Relations between India and Canada, strained due to the latter’s alleged leniency toward supporters of Khalistan, hit a new low on Tuesday (September 19). Canadian Prime Minister Justin Trudeau claimed there was evidence to suggest India’s involvement in the killing of Hardeep Singh Nijjar, designated as a terrorist by India, in Surrey this June. The Indian government rejected these allegations and accused Canada of providing shelter to Khalistani extremists. 

What was the Khalistan Movement?

  • The Khalistan movement is a Sikh separatist movement, which seeks to create a separate country called Khalistān in the Punjab region to serve as a homeland for Sikhs 
  • The fight for a separate Sikh state owes its origins to the Punjabi Suba Movement. The Akali Dal – a Sikh-dominated political party – sought to create a separate Sikh Suba or Province. 
  • When the States Reorganization Commission, constituted to assess the demand for separate states by linguistic groups, made its recommendations, it rejected the Akali Dal’s demand. 
  • But after a series of violent protests, the Indira Gandhi government relented in 1966. 
  • The state was trifurcated into Punjabi-majority Punjab, Hindi-majority Haryana and the Union Territory of Chandigarh. Some hilly regions of the state were merged into Himachal Pradesh. 

Anandpur Resolution

  • The Punjabi movement galvanised considerable political support for the Akali Dal and after a brief split, the party came together under Parkash Singh Badal’s leadership, giving the Congress a tough fight in the 1967 and 1969 assembly elections. 
  • The 1972 election, however, proved to be blip in the Akalis’ rising political graph. The Congress swept to power, prompting the Shiromani Akali Dal to introspect. 
  • The venue for this introspection was the Anandpur Sahib Gurudwara, where the party adopted a resolution that would serve as a blueprint for the party’s future agenda. The resolution demanded autonomy for the state of Punjab, identified regions that would be part of a separate state, and sought the right to frame its own internal constitution. 
  • This was the Anandpur Sahib Resolution 
  • With the Anandpur Sahib resolution, the Akalis tried to create the perception that Sikh religion could not be separated from Sikh politics. Positioning itself as the sole guardian of the faith served a politically expedient narrative for a party looking to unseat the Congress in Punjab. 

About Jarnail Singh Bhindranwale

  • While Akalis may have abandoned its stated aims, the Anandpur Sahib resolution found an admirer in Jarnail Singh Bhindranwale – a religious scholar who’d been travelling across Punjab advocating a return to the Khalsa or a more orthodox form of Sikhism. He targeted Hindus and ‘modernised’ Sikhs, who cut their hair and consumed alcohol in equal measure. 
  • If the Akalis were a moderate faction espousing Sikh pride and politics, Bhindranwale represented the extremist view that among other things called for a separate state. 
  • But there were times when the lines blurred, like in August 1982 when Bhindranwale and Harcharan Singh Longowal, then President of the Akali Dal, launched the Dharam Yudh Morcha or a civil disobedience movement. 
  • Both took up residence inside the Golden temple, directing demonstrations and police clashes. 

About Operation Bluestar

  • Between 1-3 June, 1984, rail road and air services in Punjab were suspended. Water and electricity supply to the Golden Temple was also cut off. A complete curfew was imposed in Amritsar, with the CRPF patrolling the streets. All entry and exit points to and from the Golden Temple were also completely sealed. 
  • At 10:30 PM on 5 June 1984, the first phase of the operation was launched. A frontal attack was launched on the buildings inside the Golden Temple complex. Trained fighters offered heavy resistance to the indian army. The army was unable to move towards the sanctum sanctorum where Bhindranwale was believed to be lodged. 
  • In other parts of Punjab, the Army had launched a simultaneous operation to round up suspects from villages and Gurudwaras. 
  • Mindful of the trust deficit in the Sikh community, Indira Gandhi recalled her Sikh bodyguards – Satwant Singh and Beant Singh. They are regarded by some as martyrs. (Photo Courtesy: Sikh Siyasat News) 
  • A day later, General KS Brar called for tank support to tackle the situation. 
  • On 6 June, tanks rolled down the staircase right up to the parikrama – the perimeter that encloses the lake on which the sanctum sanctorum is built. Tanks shelled the exterior of the Akal Takth and while it suffered exterior damage, the structure remained standing. 
  • The bodies of Bhindranwale and his commanders were recovered and by 7 June, the Indian army gained control of the complex. 
  • But it was another two days before four terrorists holed up in a basement were eliminated. Operation Bluestar finally ended in the afternoon on 10 June 1984 

Aftermath of the Operation

  • Four months later, on 31 October 1984, Prime Minister Indira Gandhi was assassinated by her two Sikh bodyguards. 
  • More than 8,000 Sikhs were killed in the ensuing anti-Sikh riots in 1984. 
  • A year later, on 23 June 1985, Sikh nationalists based in Canada blew up an Air India flight killing 329 people. They said the attack was to “avenge Bhindranwale’s killing”. 
  • On 10 August 1986, former Army Chief General AS Vaidya, who led Operation Bluestar, was assassinated by two bike-borne militants in Pune. Later that day, an unsigned note on behalf of the so-called ‘Khalistan Commando Force’ claimed responsibility for the killing. 
  • On 31 August 1995, a suicide bomber took out Punjab Chief Minister Beant Singh inside the Punjab civil secretariat in Chandigarh. Singh was credited with wiping out terrorism, which had spiked in the aftermath of Operation Bluestar. 

What is the status of the Khalistan movement today?

  • Punjab has long been peaceful, but the movement lives among some Sikh communities overseas. 
  • The diaspora is composed predominantly of people who don’t want to live in India. These people include many who remember the bad old days of the 80s and thus the support for Khalistan remains stronger there. 
  • The deep rooted anger over Operation Blue Star and the desecration of the Golden Temple continues to resonate with some in the newer generations of Sikhs. However, even as Bhindranwale is viewed as a martyr by many and the 1980s remembered as dark times, this has not manifested into tangible political support for the Khalistan cause. 

What kind of anti-India activities have been seen in Canada?

  • Over the years, there have been many instances. These are the two most recent ones. 
  • The most recent one took place on June 4, when a parade was organised in Brampton, Ontario, ahead of the 39th anniversary of Operation Bluestar at the Golden Temple in Amritsar. 
  • A tableau in the 5 km-long parade seemed to celebrate the assassination of former Prime Minister Indira Gandhi — a female figure was shown in a blood-stained white saree, with the hands up, as turbaned men pointed guns at her. A poster behind the scene read “Revenge for the attack on Darbar Sahib”. 
  • Brampton is home to Canada’s largest Sikh population. Last year, a pro-Khalistan organisation known as Sikhs for Justice (SFJ) held a so-called “referendum” on Khalistan here. The organisers claimed that more than 100,000 people had turned up in support of Khalistan. 
  • The Government of India issued a strong rebuke, urging Canada to curtail any “anti-India activities”. It asked the Canadian government to designate as terrorists all those individuals who were so designated in India. SFJ is an outlawed organisation in India, and has been linked to the rocket-propelled grenade (RPG) attack at Punjab Intelligence headquarters in Mohali in May 2022. 

Have there been similar instances earlier too ?

  • Yes. Back in 2002, Toronto-based Punjabi-language weekly Sanjh Savera greeted Indira’s death anniversary with a cover illustration of her murder and a headline urging readers to ‘Honour the martyrs who killed the sinner’. 
  • The magazine received government advertisements and is now a prominent daily in Canada. 
  • In fact, Canada has been considered a safe haven for Khalistan supporters and militant voices accused of terrorism in India for even longer. 

But why does Canada do this ?

  • It is broadly the same as Jaishankar’s reference to “vote bank politics” in Canada. 
  • As per the 2021 Canadian census, Sikhs account for 2.1 per cent of Canada’s population, and are the country’s fastest-growing religious group. After India, Canada is home to the largest population of Sikhs in the world. 
  • Today, Sikhs lawmakers and officials serve at all levels of Canada’s government, and their burgeoning population is one of the most important political constituencies in the country. In 2017, Jagmeet Singh, 39, became the first Sikh leader of a major Canadian political party when he took the reins of the left-leaning New Democratic Party (NDP). 

Why is the Khalistan movement continuing in Canada despite being over in India ?

  • It is important to note here that not all Canadian Sikhs are Khalistan supporters, and for most in the Sikh diaspora, Khalistan is not a “hot” issue. 
  • Canadian leaders do not want to lose Sikh votes but they wrongly think the loud minority of Khalistanis are all Sikhs of Canada. 
  • Support for Khalistan within the diaspora is due to the lack of connection to the ground realities of Punjab. 
  • The diaspora comprises people “who chose to leave”, including those who left during the 1980s, when the movement was at its peak and the Indian state was extremely hard on Khalistani separatists, with a lot of extra-judicial arrests and killings. The memories of those times have kept the movement alive among these people, even though the ground realities of Punjab are very different today. However, even within the diaspora, support has dwindled over the years.  
  • As a new generation of Sikhs grows up in foreign shores with little personal memory of India, the movement is likely to further dwindle. 

4 . Facts for Prelims

Yes Tech

  • It is a new automated real-time yield estimation system put in place from this kharif season for the wheat and rice crop. 
  • The system is created with assistance from ISRO and ICAR. 
  • The YES-TECH Manual, a comprehensive guide, has been developed after extensive testing in 100 districts of India. It facilitates the implementation of YES-TECH enabling accurate yield assessments at the Gram Panchayat level. 

International Commission on Monuments and Sites (ICOMOS)

  • International Council on Monuments and Sites is an international non governmental organisation that is comprised of professionals, experts, representatives from local authorities, companies and heritage organisations, and is dedicated to the conservation and enhancement of the architectural and landscape heritage in France and throughout the world. 
  • ICOMOS provides the World Heritage Committee with evaluations of properties with cultural values proposed for inscription on the World Heritage List, as well as with comparative studies, technical assistance and reports on the state of conservation of inscribed properties.
  • Risk preparedness – The Heritage@Risk program was endorsed by ICOMOS members at the General Assembly in Mexico in 1999. The aim of these reports is to identify threatened heritage places, monuments and sites, present typical case studies and trends, and share suggestions for solving individual or global threats to our cultural heritage. 

Bima sugam

  • It’s an online platform where customers can choose a suitable scheme from multiple options given by various companies.  
  • All insurance requirements, including those for life, health, and general insurance (including motor and travel) will be met by Bima Sugam. This platform will help in the settlement of claims, whether it’s health coverage or death claims, in a paperless manner on the basis of policy numbers.  
  • It is an initiative of the IRDAI.

Karnataka’s Hoysala temples

  • The Hoysala temples at Belur, Halebidu and Somanathapur in Karnataka were declared as UNESCO World Heritage Sites in a move that will bring global recognition with prospects of increase in international tourism to these places. 
  • All three temples are protected by the Archaeological Survey of India (ASI) and the nominations were entered as ‘The Sacred Ensembles of Hoysalas’ 
  • The Hoysala temples are known for evolving a distinct style that is ornate with temple architecture following a stellate plan built on a raised platform. The material used in temple construction is choloritic schist which is also known as soapstone that are soft and amiable to carving. 
  • While the construction of the Chennakeshava temple at Belur in commenced during the period of king Vishnuvardhana in 1117 CE and took 103 years to complete, the Hoysaleshwara temple was commissioned in 1121 CE while the Keshava temple at Somanathapur in Mysuru district was commissioned by Somanatha Dandanayaka during the regime of Narasimha III in 1268 CE. 


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