Important Current Affairs
The Indian Haj mission in Saudi Arabia adopting digital technology with the Introduction of Haj App, Indian diplomats in Saudi Arabia.
It bridging with pilgrims not only to facilitate a smooth and hassle-free Haj operation received grievances and feedbacks to improve the service by Indian Ambassador Dr Ausaf .
It has been developed to receive feedback, a grievance from Hajis (Haj pilgrims).
They received feedback in English, Hindi and Urdu but soon other regional languages will be incorporated.
HAJ app connects pilgrims with Haj service coordinators (of their respective states) known as Qadimul Hajjaj.
Qadimul Hajjaj are government employees who are deputed to assist pilgrims during Haj season.
e-MASIHA (Medical Assistance System for Indian Hajis Abroad) is an online platform where Health status and medical history of visiting pilgrims is being stored.
It would retrieve pilgrims’ health information to apply appropriate treatment whenever he or she visits Indian medical facilities during Haj.
The other means to connect the officials and pilgrims are website and social media channels, toll-free numbers and exclusive in-house Youtube channel.
Pilgrims are being provided Saudi Arabian mobile SIM card in India itself. These SIM cards can be activated in their buildings in Madinah and Makkah after recording their biometrics. Biometrics is a mandatory requirement for the issue of SIM cards in Saudi Arabia
It is an annual Islamic pilgrimage to Mecca in Saudi Arabia the holiest city for Muslims.
Hajj 2019: will begin on the evening of 9 August and ends in the evening of 14 August 2019.
This year, a total of 2 lakh Indian pilgrims are expected to travel for Haj to Saudi Arabia.
Out of this 1.4 lakh pilgrims are traveling through government arm HCI (Haj Committee of India) and remaining through private Haj operators.
he 43rd Session of the UNESCO World Heritage Committee was held from June 30 to July 10, 2019 in Baku, Azerbaijan.
The United Nations Educational, Scientific and Cultural Organization (UNESCO) added several new sites into the list of the World Heritage Sites.
Some of the monuments which are added towards it are
Bahrain’s Dilmun Burial Mounds:
UNESCO World Heritage Committee (WHC) added Bahrain’s Dilmun Burial Mounds to its World Heritage List praising the tombs for their globally unique characteristics.
The burial grounds include 21 archaeological sites in the western part of the island It is built between 2050 and 1750 BC (Before Christ)
They are the evidence of the early Dilmun civilisation.
Italy’s Prosecco Hills:
Italy’s Prosecco hills northeast of Venice cultivated for centuries were added into the UNESCO World Heritage List.
It is characterised by ‘hogback’ hills, ciglioni – small plots of vines on narrow grassy terraces, forests, small villages and farmland.
The grapes produced from the famous prosecco sparkling wine are grown at Conegliano and Valdobbiadene hills.
China’s Archaeological Ruins of Liangzhu City:
The Archaeological Ruins of Liangzhu City in Hangzhou, Zhejiang province, which dates back 5,300 years were added into the UNESCO World Heritage List.
They reveal an early regional state with a unified belief system based on rice cultivation in Late Neolithic China.
It is composed of four areas namely the Area of Yaoshan Site, the Area of High-dam at the Mouth of the Valley, an Area of Low-dam on the Plain and the Area of City Site.
Indonesia’s Ombilin Coal Mining Heritage of Sawahlunto:
The Ombilin coal mine in Sawahlunto, West Sumatra, the “oldest coal mining town in Southeast Asia” added into the UNESCO World Heritage List.
It comprises the mining site and company town, coal storage facilities at the port of Emmahaven.
It was developed by the Netherlands colonial government from the beginning of the 20th century.
Mozu-Furuichi Kofun Group: Mounded Tombs of Ancient Japan:
It is located on a plateau above the Osaka Plain, Japan.
It includes 49 kofuns (old mounds in Japanese).
This kofun selected from a total of 160,000 in Japan and form the richest material representation of the Kofun period, from the 3rd to the 6th century CE (Common Era).
They demonstrate the differences in social classes and reflect a highly sophisticated funerary system.
Megalithic Jar Sites in Xiengkhouang- Plain of Jars:
Megalithic Jar Sites in Xieng Khouang- Plain of Jars from Lao People’s Democratic Republic were added into the UNESCO World Heritage List.
The Plain of Jars, located on a plateau in central Laos
It gets its name from more than 2,100 tubular-shaped megalithic stone jars used for funerary practices in the Iron Age.
This serial site of 15 components contains large carved stone jars, stone discs, secondary burials, tombstones, quarries and funerary objects dating from 500 BCE to 500 CE.
They are evidence of the Iron Age civilization.
Parliament questioned the Centre whether it will repeal Articles 370 and 35A if it seems to violate any United Nations regulation or any international obligation of the country.
Centre replied to Parliament that no foreign government or organisation has any right to repeal Article 370 in Jammu and Kashmir. It said so because any matter related to the Constitution of India are internal and only for the Indian Parliament to deal with. J&K is an integral part of India.
What is Article 370?
Article 370 of the Indian constitution gives autonomous status to the state of Jammu and Kashmir. The article is drafted as Temporary, Transitional and Special Provisions in Part XXI of the Constitution. The Indian Constitution still describes it as a temporary provision.
Article 370 provided six special provisions for Jammu and Kashmir:
1) The State is allowed to have its own Constitution.
2) The Central legislative powers over the State were limited to the three subjects of defence, foreign affairs and communications.
3) Only with the concurrence of the State Government, other constitutional powers of Indian Government could be extended to the State.
4) The concurrence was only provisional. The State's Constituent Assembly should ratify the provision.
5) Until the State Constituent Assembly was formed, the State Government was given authority to give concurrence. Once the State Constituent Assembly finalised the scheme of powers and dispersed, no further extension of powers was possible.
6) Only if the State's Constituent Assembly approves Article 370, it could be repealed or amended.
Article 35A of the Indian Constitution permits the J&K state's legislature to define permanent resident of the state. It was added to the Constitution through a statutory Presidential Order, i.e., The Constitution (Application to Jammu and Kashmir) Order, 1954 which was issued by the President of India on 14 May 1954. This law exercises the powers conferred by the clause (1) of Article 370 of the Indian Constitution and with the concurrence of the Government of the State of Jammu and Kashmir.
India’s first elephant rehabilitation center will be set up by the Kerala State Government
It is in its ecotourism village of Kottoor.Rs.105 crore.
The project is launched by Chief Minister of Kerala, Pinarayi Vijayan.
At present, the center has only 15 elephants
It will be increased once work has been completed.
The center will have an elephant museum, mahout training center, super-specialty hospital, a retirement home and crematorium for the animals, will house orphaned, injured and older elephants.
The center spread over 65 hectares of natural forests start an elephant safari and other activities to attract tourists.
The state has 507 captive elephants & forest department plans to admit more captive elephants.
The Sree Krishna temple in Guruvayur town has 59 elephants.
The center will be set up with 65 hectares of natural forests area other activities to attract tourists.
The center will have a training center for mahouts along with a residential facility for them.
There are no authorized training schools for mahouts in the country
It leads to the ill-treatment of animals.