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PIB 20th December 2020


  1. Aligarh Muslim University
  2. Centrally Protected Monuments/ sites
  3. Ease of Doing Business reforms
  4. Gurudev Rabindranath Tagore
  5. Gatka, Kalaripayattu, Thang-Ta and Mallakhamba 


Focus: GS 1 ;Modern Indian history from about the middle of the eighteenth century until the present significant events, personalities, issues.

Focus: GS 1 ; The Freedom Struggle — its various stages and important contributors/contributions from different parts of the country

Why in News?

PM to address Centenary Celebrations of Aligarh Muslim University (AMU) on 22 December

About Aligarh Muslim University (AMU)

  • The Aligarh Muslim University is a premier central university in Aligarh, India, which was originally established by Sir Syed Ahmad Khan as the Muhammadan Anglo-Oriental College in 1875.
  • The Muhammadan Anglo-Oriental College became Aligarh Muslim University in 1920, following the Aligarh Muslim University Act.
  • It has three off-campus centres in Malappuram (Kerala), AMU Murshidabad centre (West Bengal), and Kishanganj Centre (Bihar).
  • The university has been ranked 801–1000 in the QS World University Rankings of 2021, and 17 in India by the National Institutional Ranking Framework in 2020.
About Sir Syed Ahmed Khan Ji
  • Sir Syed Ahmed Taqvi bin Syed Muhammad Muttaqi KCSI, commonly known as Sir Syed Ahmed Khan, was an Islamic pragmatist, Islamic reformer, and philosopher of nineteenth-century British India.
  • Syed Ahmed Khan was born in Delhi, the capital of the Mughal Empire to an affluent and aristocratic family that had close ties with the Mughal court.
  • Sir Syed is believed to be the first Indian Muslim who understood the need for a fresh orientation of Islam.
  • He was educated in the Quran and the sciences.
  • He advocated the learning of English.
  • He was also against superstition and evil customs prevalent in society then.
  • He also advocated inter-faith understanding.
  • He believed that Muslim society could move ahead only if rigid orthodoxy was abandoned and pragmatism was adopted.
  • In 1869, he received the Order of the Star of India from the British government.
  • Sir Syed knew that orthodox Muslim hostility to modern science and technology will come in the way of socio-economic improvement.
  • He also gave rational interpretations of Islamic scriptures, many orthodox groups of that time declared him to be a ‘Kafir’.
Muslims of India Twitter'da: "27 March 🕥 Remembering #SirSyed Ahmad Khan  on his death anniversary. The great scholar and statesman laid the  foundation of Aligarh College which later up-graded to Aligarh Muslim
About Contributions of Sir Syed Ahmed Khan Ji
  • He wrote a profound booklet ‘Asbab-e-Baghawat-e-Hind’ (Reasons for the Indian Revolt of 1857) which cited British ignorance and aggressive expansion policies as the chief causes of the revolt.
  • Sir Syed stressed the importance of modern scientific education for Muslims to advance their conditions.
  • He was also a scholar on Christianity, and wrote a book, ‘Commentary on the Holy Bible’.
  • He set up many educational institutes to propagate education, the most significant being the Muhammadan Anglo-Oriental College (MAOC) which he set up in 1875, Which later became the Aligarh Muslim University.
  • The MAOC was instrumental in the Aligarh Movement of the 19th century which was an important movement of a renaissance among Indian Muslims.
  • He founded the Scientific Society of Aligarh modeling it on the Royal Society of England.
  • He was nominated to the Viceroy’s Legislative Council in 1878.
  • He supported Dadabhai Naoroji and Surendranath Banerjee in obtaining representation for Indians in the government and the civil services.
  • He is regarded as one of the founders of the Two-Nation Theory which says that Hindus and Muslims cannot be one nation.
  • Sir Syed was knighted by the British in 1888.
  • He died on 27 March 1898 aged 80 in Aligarh.


Focus: GS 1 ;Indian culture will cover the salient aspects of Art Forms, literature and Architecture from ancient to modern times.

Why in News?

ASI removes cap on the number of visitors to its Centrally Protected Monuments/ sites

About Centrally Protected Monuments/Sites

  • The Archaeological Survey of India has made a big announcement to increase the number of visitors to the centrally protected monuments and tourist places on the occasion of Christmas and New Year.
  • This is as per the latest communication on the updated SOPs for  Centrally Protected Monuments/ sites, issued by the Archaeological Survey of India (ASI).
  • The communication also states that all centrally protected monuments and sites shall continue to be bound by the Covid related protocols issued by the Ministry of Home Affairs, Ministry of Health and Family Welfare, and Ministry of Culture as also any specific orders of the State and/or District administration. 
  • The minimum prohibited area in respect of centrally protected monuments and protected areas is 100m, in all directions beginning at the limit of the protected area of the centrally protected monument or site. 
  • The minimum limit of the regulated area of centrally protected monuments and protected areas is 200m which will begin from the limit of the prohibited area.
  • No permission for construction, including Government/public work, is to be permitted in the prohibited area of centrally protected monuments and protected areas as per the Amendment Act.
  • These limits are extendable as per the classification of the centrally protected monuments and protected areas on the recommendation of the National Monuments Authority.
  • The National Monuments Authority (NMA) under the Ministry of Culture, Govt. of India has been set up as per provisions of The Ancient Monuments and Archaeological Sites and Remains AMASR (Amendment and Validation) Act, 2010 which was enacted in March 2010.


Focus: GS 3 ;Indian Economy and issues relating to planning, mobilization, of resources, growth, development and employment.

Why in News?

Reform linked borrowing permissions are facilitating Ease of Doing Business reforms

About Ease of Doing Business Reforms

  • The Ease of Doing Business is an important indicator of the investment friendly business climate in the country.
  • The improvements in the ease of doing business will enable faster future growth of the state economy. 
  • Therefore, the government of India had in May 2020, decided to link grant of additional borrowing permissions to States who undertake the reforms to facilitate ease of doing business.
  • The reforms stipulated in this category are:-
  1. Completion of first assessment of ‘District Level Business Reform Action Plan’
  2. Elimination of the requirements of renewal of registration certificates/approvals/licenses obtained by businesses for various activities at least under the following Acts: –
  1. The Shops & Establishment Act
  2. The Contracts Labour (Regulation and Abolition) Act, 1970
  3. The Factories Act, 1948
  4. The Legal Metrology Act
  5. The Inter State Migrant Workmen (RE&CS) Act, 1979
  6. Drug Manufacturing/ Selling/ Storage License
  7. Trade License issued by the Municipal Corporations.
  • Implementation of computerized central random inspection system under the Acts wherein allocation of inspectors is done centrally, the same inspector is not assigned to the same unit in subsequent years, prior inspection notice is provided to the business owner, and inspection report is uploaded within 48 hours of inspection.
  • This includes the inspection under:-
  1. The Equal Remuneration Act, 1976
  2. The Minimum Wages Act, 1948
  3. The Shops and Establishments Act
  4. The Payment of Bonus Act, 1965
  5. The Payment of Wages Act, 1936
  6. The Payment of Gratuity Act, 1972
  7. The Contract Labour (Regulation and Abolition) Act, 1970
  8. The Factories Act, 1948
  9. The Boilers Act, 1923
  10. The Water (Prevention and Control of Pollution) Act, 1974
  11. The Air (Prevention and Control of Pollution) Act, 1981
  12. The Legal Metrology Act, 2009 and Rules
  • The four citizen-centric areas for reforms identified were (a) Implementation of One Nation One Ration Card System, (b) Ease of doing business reform, (c) Urban Local body/ utility reforms, and (d) Power Sector reforms.
  • So far 10 States have implemented the One Nation One Ration Card System, 5 States have done Ease of Doing Business reforms, and 2 States have done local body reforms.
  • To facilitate more States to undertake the reforms and avail additional borrowings, The Department of Expenditure, Ministry of Finance had recently extended the deadline for the States to complete citizen-centric reforms in various sectors. 


Focus: GS 1 ; The Freedom Struggle — its various stages and important contributors/contributions from different parts of the country

Why in News?

Union Home Minister Shri Amit Shah says Gurudev Rabindranath Tagore, Visva Bharati and Shantiniketan have always been centers of attraction in India and abroad

About Gurudev Rabindranath Tagore Ji

  • The Rabindranath Tagore Ji was a Bengali poet, writer, composer, philosopher, music composer and choreographer, founder of a unique educational institution Visva Bharati and a painter.
  • He reshaped Bengali literature and music, as well as Indian art with Contextual Modernism in the late 19th and early 20th centuries.
  • Popularly known as ‘Gurudev’, he was born in an affluent Family.
  • He was also called the ‘Bard of Bengal’.
  • He was knighted by the British government in 1915, but he later renounced it protesting against the Jallianwala Bagh Massacre.
  • He was a widely travelled person and had been to over 30 countries in 5 different continents.
  • He met many other eminent personalities like Albert Einstein, Romain Rolland, Robert Frost, G B Shaw, Thomas Mann, etc.
  • He had spoken at the World Parliament for Religions in the years 1929 and 1937.
  • The Tagore Ji’s birth anniversary is celebrated by Bengalis all over the word as Rabindra Jayanti.
  • It is marked on the 25th day of the Bengali month of Boisakh (falls in early May in the Gregorian calendar), it is celebrated in Bangladesh also.
  • A period of prolonged agony ended with Tagore’s death on 7 August 1941, aged 80.
irst Nobel Laureate of India 
7 May 1861 - 7 August 1941 
Bengali polymath who : Prolific composer with 
: 2,230 songs to his credit. 
reshaped Bengali 
literature & music, as well : His songs are known as 
as Indian art. 
First non-European to win 
Literature in 1913. 
"The highest education is that 
which does not merely give us 
information but makes our life 
in harmony with all existence" 
: He is the ONLY PERSON in 
: history to author national 
: anthems of two nations 
India & Bangladesh. 
The lyrics and music for the 
original song of Sri Lanka's 
: National Anthem were 
also the work of Tagore.
Contributions of Gurudev Ji
  • The Tagore Ji began writing poetry at the tender age of eight years old and at 16 years of age, Tagore released his first collection of poems under the pen name ‘Bhanusimha’.
  • He became the first non-European to win the Nobel Prize for Literature when he won the award in 1913 for his translation of his own work in Bengali, Gitanjali.
  • In 1918, he founded the Vishwabharati University at Santiniketan.
  • The Tagore JI is responsible for modernizing Bengali prose and poetry.
  • His notable works include Gitanjali, Ghare-Baire, Gora, Manasi, Balaka, Sonar Tori, he is also remembered for his song ‘Ekla Chalo Re’.
  • He was the first non-white person to win a Noble Prize.
  • The Tagore Ji is said to have composed over 2000 songs and his songs and music are called ‘Rabindrasangeet’ with its own distinct lyrical and fluid style.
  • He started the Rakhi Utsav where people from Hindu and Muslim communities tied colorful threads on each other’s wrists.
  • His poems and songs infuse people with a feeling of patriotism and love for the motherland.
  • His novels, dances, dramas, essays, dance-dramas, and stories cover a wide range of topics from personal to political.
  • The national anthems of both India and Bangladesh were composed by Tagore. (India’s Jana Gana Mana and Bangladesh’s Amar Shonar Bangla.)
  • The Sri Lankan national anthem is also said to have been inspired by Tagore Ji.


Focus: GS 1 ;Indian culture will cover the salient aspects of Art Forms, literature and Architecture from ancient to modern times.

Why in News?

In major thrust to indigenous games, Sports Ministry includes Gatka, Kalaripayattu, Thang-Ta and Mallakhamba in Khelo India Youth Games 2021

About Gatka, Kalaripayattu, Thang-Ta and Mallakhamba

About Gatka
  • The Gatka is the name of an Indian martial art associated with the Sikhs of the Punjab who practice an early variant of the martial art. It is a style of stick-fighting, with wooden sticks intended to simulate swords.
  • The Punjabi name gatka properly refers to the wooden stick used.
About Kalaripayattu
  • The Kalaripayattu, also known simply as Kalari, is an Indian martial art that originated in modern-day Kerala, a state on the southwestern coast of India. Kalaripayattu is held in high regard by martial artists due to its long-standing history within Indian martial arts.
About  Thang-Ta
  • The Huyen langlon is an Indian martial art from Manipur.
  • In the Meitei language, huyen means war while langlon or langlong can mean net, knowledge or art.
  • The Huyen langlon consists of two main components i.e. thang-ta and sarit sarak.
  • The primary weapons of huyen langlon are the thang and ta.
About Mallakhamba
  • The Mallakhamb is a traditional sport, originating from the Indian subcontinent, in which a gymnast performs aerial yoga or gymnastic postures and wrestling grips in concert with a vertical stationary or hanging wooden pole, cane, or rope.
  • The name Mallakhamb derives from the terms malla, meaning wrestler, and khamb, which means a pole.
  • On April 9, 2013, the Indian state of Madhya Pradesh declared Mallakhamba the state sport.
  • The Mallakhamb, an Indian martial art and performing originated in Maharashtra centuries ago was reinvented by Balambhatt Dada Deodhar, from the Peshwa clan who accepted a challenge to beat 2 Nizamis wrestlers.
December 2023