PIB Analysis : 11th and 12th January

PIB Analysis for UPSC CSE

Topics Covered

  1. Thyagaraja
  2. Aurobindo Ghosh, Ras Behari Bose, Khudi Ram Bose, Bagha Jatin
  3. Amendment of MMDR Act and CMSP Act
  4. National Highway Excellence Awards 2019
  5. Mission Purvodaya
  6. Facts for Prelims

1 . Thyagaraja

About Thyagaraja

  • Thyagaraja was born in 1767, at Tiruvarur in the thanjavur district of tamil nadu.
  • His father, rama brahmam, was a distinguished exponent of the Ramayana and was patronized by tulajaji, the ruler of thanjavur. Devotion to rama became ingrained in his from his youth.
  • Thyagaraja completed a study of Sanskrit, telugu and allied subjects while in his teens. He must have mastered the valmiki ramayanam, potana bhagavatam and other religious literature with the help of his father.
  • Musical instinct in him was so strong that before the age of 13 he not merely gained an adequate mastery over vocal music but also composed his maiden song ‘namo namo raghvaya’ (Sanskrit) in desya todia. Rama brahmam, who immediately recognized his son’s extraordinary gifts, placed him under the tutelage of sonti venkataramanayya. Venkatasubbayya was the chief among the then place vidwans of thanjavur. Thyagaraja’s apprenticeship appears to have been a short one during which he learnt all that his furns had to teach.
  • Thyagaraja was the supreme architect of the ‘kriti’ form. This form was handled by him lavishing on it all his gifts as a composer.
  • The ‘Pancharatnam’ or ‘five gems’ in the traditional Ghana ragas. Natta, Gaula, Arabhi, Varali and Sriraga is Thyagaraja’s most scholarly contribution to South Indian music

2 . Aurobindo Ghosh, Ras Behari Bose, Khudi Ram Bose, Bagha Jatin

About Aurobindo Ghosh

  • In 1871 Sri Aurobindo was born of at Calcutta, in Bengal, in a reputed Ghosh family of Konnagar.
  • From school Aurobindo went to King’s College, Cambridge, where he distinguished himself as a student of European classics.
  • He passed the Indian Civil Service Examination with great credit in 1890. Failing, however, to stand the required test in horsemanship, he was not allowed to enter the Covenantal Service of the Indian Government. But, returning to India, he became the Vice-principal of the State college in Baroda.
  • Aurobindo was an accomplished scholar in Greek. He got high distinction in Latin. He learnt French very well and picked up a little of German and Italian to study Goethe and Dante in the original. He was steeped in the lore of our ancient Vedic scriptures.
  • Aurobindo edited the English daily Bande Mataram and wrote fearless and pointed editorials. He started the English weekly DharmaHe spread his message: “Our ideal of Swaraj is absolute autonomy, absolute self-rule, free from foreign control”.
  • Aurobindo openly advocated the boycott of British goods, British courts and everything British. He always asked the people to prepare themselves for passive resistance.
  • He was in the forefront of the national struggle during the days of the partition of Bengal.
  • The famous Alipore Bomb Case was the turning point in Sri Aurobindo’s life. For a year Aurobindo was an undertrial prisoner in solitary confinement in the Alipore Central Jail.
  • He utilized this period of incarceration for an intense study and practice of the teachings of the Bhagavad Gita. Chittaranjan Das defended Sri Aurobindo, who was acquitted after a memorable trial.
  • Aurobindo began his Yoga in 1904. He had no helper or Guru in Yoga till he met Lele, a Maharashtrian Yogi in Baroda; and that was only for a short time. 
  • Sri Aurobindo migrated from Calcutta to Chandranagar and later reached Pondicherry on April 4, 1910. At first, he lived there with four or five companions. Gradually the number of members increased. An Ashram grew up around him.
  • Now there are hundreds of inmates in the Ashram accommodated in more than a hundred houses. The Ashramites are engaged in various activities connected with the Ashram—some in the dairy, some in the vegetable garden, yet, others in the laundry and the small bakery.
  • To the Ashram inmates, all activities form a part of their Sadhana. Here life is an undivided whole, not consisting of water-tight compartments.
  • The Ashram has a school of its own. Here stress is laid on physical culture. Vocational education is imparted to pupils between the ages of 14 to 18.
  • In 1920, Mira, a French lady who was imbued with the same ideal, joined the Sri Aurobindo circle. She, became the Mother and presided over the Ashram.

Ras Behari Bose

  • Ras Behari Bose was born in Chandannagar, West Bengal, in 1886, Bose wanted to join the Army but was rejected by the British.
  • He subsequently joined government service as a clerk before embarking on a journey as a freedom fighter. 
  • Delhi conspiracy : In 1912, Delhi was decked up to welcome the then Viceroy Lord Hardinge on the occasion of the capital’s transfer from Calcutta to Delhi. Basant Biswas, a young boy of 16 years, had dressed up as a woman and thrown a crude bomb at the elephant carrying the Viceroy. Hardinge escaped with injuries. Rash Behari was the mastermind behind the attack and helped make the bomb.
  • After the blast, Bose went back to his government job at the Forest Research Institute and even organised an honorary reception for Hardinge a few months later.
  • But when fingers began to be pointed at Bose and murmurs emerged about his role as a militant revolutionary for three-years he was absconding
  • He is credited as one of the brains behind the Ghadar mutiny.  In 1915, after the failed Ghadar mutiny, Bose left for Japan.
  • It was in Japan that the seeds of the INA were sown and nurtured.  In 1942, Bose established the ‘Indian Independence League’ — an army that would fight for India’s freedom from British rule. He subsequently handed over the reins to Subhas Chandra Bose, who developed it as the Indian National Army or the Azad Hind Fauj.

Khudi Ram Bose

  • Khudiram Bose was born in 1889, in the small village of Habibpur situated under the Keshpur Police Station in the Midnapore district of West Bengal
  • Khudiram was possessed by the spirit of the freedom movement when he heard a series of public lectures held in Medinipur, by Sri Aurobindo and Sister Nivedita. He became a volunteer when he was just 15, and courted his first arrest for distributing pamphlets against the British rule in India.
  • Just a year later, Khudiram was taking part in full-blown revolutionary activities, planting bombs near police stations and targetting government officials.
  • It is said that Khudiram was part of the Anushilan Samiti, a Bengali organisation that was active in the first quarter of the 20th century, propounding revolutionary violence as a means to driving the British out of India.
  • During the British rule, the Samiti was led by nationalists like Aurobindo Ghosh, and his brother, Barindra Ghosh.
  • In 1908, Bose and Prafulla Chaki were appointed to kill Muzzaffarpur district magistrate Kingsford. As the Chief Magistrate of Calcutta Presidency, Kingston had become unpopular for passing harsh and cruel sentences on young political activists. He was also noted for inflicting corporal punishments on them and due his deeds, he was loathed by the locals. Soon after his transfer to Muzaffarpur, a plan was hatched to murder him. Chaki and Khudiram were chosen and sent to Muzaffarpur to execute this task.
  • On reaching Muzaffarpur, Khudiram observed his target for few days, noting his routine and observing his daily schedule. On 30th April 1908, Khudiram threw a bomb at a carriage believed to be carrying Kingsford right outside the European club. But instead of Kingford, the carriage was occupied by the wife and daughter of barrister Pringle Kennedy, a leading pleader of Muzaffarpur Bar.
  • Khudiram was caught and eventually hanged to death on 11 August 1908.

About Bagha Jatin

  • Born in Kaya village in Kushtia district of the undivided Bengal, part of present day Bangladesh, in 1879, Jatin kindled the flame of revolution against the colonial British rule in the Indian subcontinent. Jatin envisioned a modern India – politically free, economically prosperous and spiritually progressive. His vision was far ahead of his times.
  • The epithet ‘Bagha Jatin’ was earned by young Jatindranath Mukherjee in 1906 when he fought with a Royal Bengal tiger all alone for three hours and killed it using a dagger
  • As a college student Jatindranath joined a relief camp organised by Sister Nivedita, the Irish disciple of Swami Vivekananda. She introduced him to Vivekananda. And it was Swami Vivekananda who instructed Jatindranath to take up the mission to bring together dedicated youth with “iron muscle” and “nerves of steel” who could plunge into the service of the motherland
  • Later, his meeting with Sri Aurobindo ignited his fervour for revolution against the British further. It was Sri Aurobindo who entrusted him to create a “secret society” for training dedicated youth for a revolution against the British. That secret society was known as Jugantar and Bagha Jatin became its commander-in-chief
  • Jugantar soon became a pan-India movement. The Jugantar Party successfully set up its units across India and even spread far across South-East Asia, Europe and America.
  • It was an era of Indian liberation movement where cultural nationalism and socialism had a rare blend in the focal point of revolution against the British.
  • The year was 1914 when the First World War broke out. Believing in ‘my enemy’s enemy is my friend’, Jatin looked towards Germany as a land of hope. In 1912, Jatin approached the German Crown Prince for the delivery of arms for an insurrection in order to create a socialist government in India.
  • The task of obtaining funds and armaments were entrusted upon MN Roy, the key lieutenant of Jatin. In April, 1915, Roy left India in search of German armaments which were believed to be en route, somewhere in the Pacific. The plan was indeed fantastic. As Roy had later recounted in his posthumously published memoirs:
  • Odisha’s Balasore coast was selected as the place where shipload of arms consignment from Germany was supposed to be delivered.
  • British Govt knew understood the plan and attacked the revolutionaries who went to procure arms from Germany. Jatin was seriously wounded in the battle and succumbed to injuries

3 . Amendment of MMDR Act and CMSP Act

Context : The ordinance for amendment in the MMDR Act 1957 and the CMSP Act 2015 has been promulgated. The Union Cabinet had earlier approved the amendments intending to open up new areas of growth in the coal & mining sector.

Details of the Amendments

  • To provide for allocation of coal blocks for composite prospecting licence-cum-mining lease (PL-cum-ML)
  • Clarifying the power of Central Government to specify the purpose of allocation and that ‘any’ company can participate
  • Flexibility in deciding the end use of Schedule II and III coal mines
  • Termination of the allocations made under the CMSP Act, their reallocation and compensation
  • Appointment of Designated Custodian in mines under production
  • Dispensing with the requirement of previous approval in certain cases
  • Entitlement to successful allocattee to utilise the coal mined in plants of Holding and Subsidiary company
  • Insertion of new section 4B (after section 4A) to enable the Central Govt. to prescribe conditions for ensuring sustained production by the holder of mining leases, who have acquired rights/approvals/clearances etc. transferred from the previous lessee, as per the provisions under section 8B, which is incorporated in this amendment:
  • Amendment of Section 8A by introducing a proviso to clarify the intent of Section 8A(4) of the MMDR Act:
  • Provisions to ensure that the successful bidder of mining leases expiring under Section 8A(5) & 8A(6), shall acquire all valid rights / approvals / clearances; for a period of two years and within which period he/she shall apply for fresh licence
  • Provisions to enable the holders of Non-Exclusive Reconnaissance permit of deep seated minerals and other minerals of the national interest to obtain composite licence (PL-cum-ML) or Mining Lease
  • Empowers the Central Government to frame rules in respect of newly introduced sections

The amendments in the Acts would enable the following:

  1. Enhancing the  ease of doing business
  2. Democratization of coal mining sector by opening it up to anyone willing to invest.
  3. Offering of unexplored and partially explored coal blocks for mining through prospecting license-cum-mining Lease (PL- cum-ML).
  4. Promoting Foreign Direct Investment in the coal mining  sector by removing the restriction and eligibility criteria for participation.
  5. Allowing of successful bidder/allottee to utilise mined coal in any of the plant of its subsidiary or holding company
  6. Attracting large investment in coal mining sector as restrictions of end use has been dropped.

4 . National Highway Excellence Awards 2019

Context : Union Minister for Road Transport & Highways and MSMEs will present the ‘National Highways Excellence Awards’ to outstanding performers in NH sector

About the Awards

  • The aim is to recognise companies which are performing exceptionally well in the construction, operations, maintenance and tolling stages of highway development as well as in the arena of road safety.
  • The motive behind starting an annual awards program is to create a spirit of healthy competitiveness amongst all stakeholders involved in the development of highway infrastructure in the country and to contribute to the larger goal of expanding the road network in the country.
  • By announcing awards each year, the Ministry would acknowledge exceptional work being done in various aspects of highway management and recognize those agencies which are going beyond the scope of their work to deliver the finest quality of services.

Categories of Awards

  • Excellence in Project Management,
  • Excellence in Operation and Maintenance
  • Excellence in Toll Management,
  • Excellence in Highway Safety
  • Innovation
  • Outstanding Work in Challenging Conditions
  • Green Highway

5 . Mission Purvodaya

Context : Minister of Petroleum and Natural Gas & Steel Shri Dharmendra Pradhan today launched PURVODAYA: Accelerated development of eastern India through integrated steel hub in Kolkata, West Bengal.

About the Mission

  • Purvodaya in steel sector is aimed at driving accelerated development of Eastern India through establishment of integrated steel hub.
  • Eastern states of India (Odisha, Jharkhand, Chhattisgarh, West Bengal) and Northern part of Andhra Pradesh collectively hold ~80% of the country’s iron ore, ~100% of coking coal and significant portion of chromite, bauxite and dolomite reserves.
  • There is presence of major ports such as Paradip, Haldia, Vizag, Kolkata etc., with >30% of India’s major port capacity.
  • In India’s march towards a $5 trillion economy, the 5 Eastern states can play a major role where steel sector can become the catalyst.
  • This Eastern belt has the potential to add more than 75% of the country’s incremental steel capacity envisioned by the National Steel Policy. It is expected that out of the 300 MT capacity by 2030-31, over 200 MT can come from this region alone, driven by Industry 4.0.

Integrated Steel Hub

  • The proposed Integrated Steel Hub, encompassing Odisha, Jharkhand, Chhattisgarh, West Bengal and Northern Andhra Pradesh, would serve as a torchbearer for socio-economic growth of Eastern India.
  • The objective of this hub would be to enable swift capacity addition and improve overall competitiveness of steel producers both in terms of cost and quality.
  • The Integrated Steel Hub would focus on 3 key elements:
    • Capacity addition through easing the setup of Greenfield steel plants
    • Development of steel clusters near integrated steel plants as well as demand centres. 3. Transformation of logistics and utilities infrastructure which would change the socio-economic landscape in the East                       

6 . Facts for Prelims

Belur Math

  • Belur Math or Belur Muth is the headquarters of the Ramakrishna Math and Mission, founded by Swami Vivekananda, a chief disciple of Ramakrishna Paramahamsa.
  • It is located on the west bank of Hooghly River, Belur, West Bengal.
  • It is a place of pilgrimage for people from all over the world professing different religious faiths. Even people not interested in religion come here for the peace it exudes.
  • The place has been sanctified by the stay of Swami Vivekananda and most of the monastic disciples of Sri Ramakrishna who spent several years here. Holy Mother Sri Sarada Devi also visited this place on several occasions.

Different Festivals

  • Lohri – Punjab, Haryana and Himachal Pradesh
  • Makar Sankranti – Odisha, Karnataka, Maharashtra, Goa, Andhra Pradesh (also called Pedda Pandaga), Telangana and Uttar Pradesh (also called Kichddi Sankranti
  • Pongal – Tamil Nadu
  • Bhogali Bihu – Assam
  • Uttarayan – Gujarat
  • Poush – West Bengal (also called Poush Sankranti)

Makara Sankranti  is a festival dedicated to the deity Surya (sun). It is observed each year in the lunar month of Magha which corresponds with the month of January as per the Gregorian calendar and is a day the people of India celebrate their harvest. It marks the first day of the sun’s transit into Makara (Capricorn), marking the end of the month with the winter solstice and the start of longer days

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