- JALLIANWALA BAGH SMARAK
- VANDE BHARAT EXPRESS
Focus: GS II- International Relations
Why in News?
India hosted the 8th Meeting of Agriculture Experts of Bay of Bengal Initiative for Multi-Sectoral Technical and Economic Cooperation (BIMSTEC) Countries virtually.
- The Chairman highlighted the UN Food System Summit 2021 and the transformations that are happening in the agriculture and food systems globally.
- He exhorted to enhance the engagement and deepen the cooperation in agriculture and allied sectors amongst the BIMSTEC Member States by encouraging the exchange of knowledge, germplasm, students and experts.
- He also emphasized addressing biosafety and biosecurity concerns and promoting digital agriculture along with the trade of technologies for developing resilient agriculture, food systems and value chains.
- The BIMSTEC Member States appreciated the greater engagement of India offering six slots of scholarships each for Master and PhD programmes in agriculture and its other initiatives for capacity development and training including the development of seed sectors.
- The cooperation in the areas of high impact transboundary diseases of livestock and poultry; aquatic animal diseases and bio-security in aquaculture and digitalization to promote precision farming was also discussed in the meeting.
The Bay of Bengal Initiative for Multi-Sectoral Technical and Economic Cooperation (BIMSTEC) is an international organisation of seven nations of South Asia and Southeast Asia:
- Sri Lanka
- Myanmar (South-east Asia)
- Thailand (South-east Asia)
- Bangladesh, Bhutan, India, Myanmar, Nepal, Sri Lanka, and Thailand are the member states dependent on the Bay of Bengal.
- Fourteen priority sectors of cooperation have been identified and several BIMSTEC centres have been established to focus on those sectors.
- The permanent secretariat of the BIMSTEC is in Dhaka, Bangladesh.
History of Formation
- In 1997, a new sub-regional grouping was formed in Bangkok under the name BIST-EC (Bangladesh, India, Sri Lanka, and Thailand Economic Cooperation).
- Following the inclusion of Myanmar on 22 December 1997 during a special Ministerial Meeting in Bangkok, the Group was renamed ‘BIMST-EC’ (Bangladesh, India, Myanmar, Sri Lanka and Thailand Economic Cooperation).
- In 2004, at the first Summit the grouping was renamed as BIMSTEC or the Bay of Bengal Initiative for Multi-Sectoral Technical and Economic Cooperation.
- There are 14 main sectors of BIMSTEC along technological and economic cooperation among south Asian and southeast Asian countries along the coast of the Bay of Bengal.
- Trade & Investment
- Transport & Communication
- Public Health
- Poverty Alleviation
- Counter-Terrorism & Transnational Crime
- Environment & Disaster Management
- People-to-People Contact
- Cultural Cooperation
- Climate Change
- The BIMSTEC uses the alphabetical order for the Chairmanship which has been taken in rotation commencing with Bangladesh (1997–1999).
JALLIANWALA BAGH SMARAK
Focus: GS I- Modern History
Why in News?
PM dedicated renovated complex of Jallianwala Bagh Smarak to the nation.
- To mark the 102 years of the Jallianwala Bagh massacre, the renovated complex of Jallianwala Bagh Smarak in Punjab’s Amritsar was inaugurated recently.
- The historic garden is a memorial of national importance, preserved in the memory of countless revolutionaries, sacrificers, fighters, who were killed in the Jallianwala Bagh Massacre, occurred on the festival of Baisakhi on 13 April 1919.
About the Jallianwala Bagh Massacre:
- The Jallianwala Bagh massacre, also known as the Amritsar massacre, took place on 13 April 1919.
- It was Baisakhi that day, a harvest festival popular in Punjab and parts of north India. Local residents in Amritsar decided to hold a meeting that day to discuss and protest against the confinement of Satya Pal and Saifuddin Kitchlew, two leaders fighting for Independence, and implementation of the Rowlatt Act, which armed the British government with powers to detain any person without trial.
- The crowd had a mix of men, women and children.
- They all gathered in a park called the Jallianwala Bagh, walled on all sides but for a few small gates, against the orders of the British.
- While the meeting was on, Brigadier-General Reginald Edward Harry Dyer, who had crept up to the scene wanting to teach the public assembled a lesson, ordered 90 soldiers he had brought with him to the venue to open fire on the crowd.
- The troops kept on firing until their ammunition was exhausted.
- At least 1000 people were killed and over 1,200 other people were injured of whom 192 were seriously injured.
- Considered the ‘The Butcher of Amritsar’ in the aftermath of the massacre, General Dyer was removed from command and exiled to Britain.
- Rabindranath Tagore and Mahatma Gandhi, as a sign of condemnation, renounced their British Knighthood and Kaiser-i-Hind medal respectively.
- In 1922, the infamous Rowlett Act was repealed by the British.
Rowlatt Act, 1919
- The act was officially known as the Anarchical and Revolutionary Crimes Act, 1919 and was passed in March 1919 by the Imperial Legislative Council.
- The act was passed as per recommendations of the Rowlatt Committee chaired by a judge, Sir Sidney Rowlatt.
- This act authorized the government to imprison for a maximum period of two years, without trial, any person suspected of terrorism.
- The act provided s speedy trial of the offenses by a special cell that consisted of 3 High Court Judges. There was no court of appeal above that panel.
- This panel could also accept the evidences which were not even acceptable in the Indian Evidences Act.
- It also placed severe restrictions on the freedom of the press.
- The act was widely condemned by Indian leaders and the public. The bills came to be known as ‘black bills’.
VANDE BHARAT EXPRESS
Focus: Indigenization of technology
Why in News?
The Indian Railways plans to operate 102 Vande Bharat trains by March 2024.
About Vande Bharat Express:
- The Train18, later named Vande Bharat Express, is an Indian semi-high-speed, intercity, EMU train which was designed and manufactured by Integral Coach Factory (ICF) at Perambur, Chennai under the Indian government’s Make in India initiative, over a span of 18 months.
- The train was launched on 15 February 2019.
- Vande Bharat Express is designed to be capable of running at a maximum speed of 200 km/h (120 mph), but the tracks on which the train operates are not capable of supporting such high speeds, hence the train is operated at a maximum speed of 130 km/h (81 mph).
- This made it the fastest train to run in India and the second fastest operating train in India, behind the Gatimaan Express which operates at 160 km/h (99 mph).
- As of Aug 2021, the Indian Railways operates two Vande Bharat trains, one from Delhi to Varanasi and the other from Delhi to Katra.
- Vande Bharat trains are self-propelled “engineless” train sets.
- Its faster acceleration and deceleration results in reduced train travel time.
- Some of its passenger friendly features include; European-style seats, diffused LED lighting, GPS-based infotainment systems, modular bio-toilets, fully sealed gangways for dust-free environment, centrally controlled entry/exit doors with sliding footsteps, divyang friendly toilet and automatic sliding cabin doors.
- It is energy-efficient as its coaches will be fitted with LED lights. Coaches will have automatic doors and retractable footsteps.