- STATEHOOD OF TELANGANA
- SHANGHAI COOPERATION ORGANIZATION
- MEMBER OF PARLIAMENT LOCAL AREA DEVELOPMENT SCHEME
STATEHOOD OF TELANGANA
Focus: GS II- Polity
Why in News?
The Prime Minister of India greeted the people of Telangana on Statehood Day (2nd June).
- On 2nd June, 2014 the north western part of Andhra Pradesh was separated and 29th state Telangana was created with Hyderabad as its capital.
- The Andhra State Act (1953) formed the first linguistic state of India, known as the state of Andhra, by taking out the Telugu speaking areas from the State of Madras (now Tamil Nadu).
- The States Reorganisation Act (1956) merged the Telugu-speaking areas of Hyderabad state with the Andhra state to create the enlarged Andhra Pradesh state.
- The Andhra Pradesh Reorganisation Act (2014) bifurcated Andhra Pradesh into two separate states, namely, the Andhra Pradesh (residuary) and the Telangana.
Telangana region after Independence
- When India became independent from the British Empire in 1947, the Present region of Telangana was a part of the Hyderabad Princely State.
- The Nizam of Hyderabad did not want to merge with the Indian Union and wanted to remain independent.
- The Government of India annexed Hyderabad State on 17 September 1948 after a military operation called Operation Polo – The Nizam’s army surrendered and India then incorporated the state of Hyderabad and ended the rule of the Nizams.
- In 1956 during the reorganisation of the Indian States based along linguistic lines, the state of Hyderabad was split up among Andhra Pradesh and Bombay state (later divided into states of Maharashtra and Gujarat in 1960 with the original portions of Hyderabad becoming part of the state of Maharashtra) and Karnataka.
History of Formation of Telangana
- The seeds of Telangana struggle were sown in 1955 when the recommendation of the States Reorganisation Commission to retain Hyderabad as a separate State went unheeded.
- Telangana leaders accused the people of Andhra of “colonising the region” by grabbing their jobs and land, and the government of not investing in the region’s infrastructure.
- On November 1, 1956, Telangana merged with the State of Andhra, carved out of erstwhile Madras, to form Andhra Pradesh, a united-state for the Telugu-speaking populace.
- The State witnessed a violent ‘separate Telangana’ agitation in 1969 and a ‘separate Andhra’ agitation in 1972.
- Many believe it was the creation of Chhattisgarh, Jharkhand and Uttaranchal (now Uttarakhand) states that spurred the demand for Telangana.
- State Bird – Palapitta (Indian Roller or Blue Jay).
- State Animal – Jinka (Deer).
- State Tree – Jammi Chettu (Prosopis Cineraria).
- State Flower – Tangedu (Tanner’s Cassia).
These icons reflect the culture and tradition of Telangana state and three of them – Tangedu flowers, Palapitta and Jammi Chettu are associated with the popular festivals of Bathukamma and Dasara, while Jinka reflects the mindset of the people of Telangana as it is very sensitive and innocent.
SHANGHAI COOPERATION ORGANIZATION
Focus: GSII- International Groupings
Why in news?
Cabinet has approved Signing and Ratification of an Agreement on “Cooperation in the field of Mass Media” between all the Member States of Shanghai Cooperation Organisation.
The main areas of cooperation are following:
- Creation of favourable conditions for wide and mutual distribution of information through the Mass Media in order to further deepen the knowledge about the lives of the peoples of their States.;
- Cooperation among the Editorial Offices of the Mass Media of their States, as well as among the relevant Ministries, Agencies and Organizations working in the field of the Mass Media, specific conditions and forms of which shall be determined by the participants themselves, including through conclusion of separate agreements;
- Promote equal and mutually beneficial cooperation among professional associations of journalists of the States of the Sides in order to study the available professional experience, as well as to hold meetings, seminars and conferences in the field of Mass Media;
- Assist in broadcasting of television and radio programs and programs, distributed legally within the territory of the State of the other Side, the legal broadcasting by Editorial Offices of materials and information, if their distribution meets the requirements of the legislation of the States of the Sides;
- Encourage the exchange of experience and specialists in the field of Mass Media, provide mutual assistance in training media professionals and encourage cooperation among the educational and scientific-research institutions and Organizations operating in this field.
About Shanghai Cooperation Organization (SCO);-
- It is a permanent intergovernmental international organization.
- It’s creation was announced on 15 June 2001 in Shanghai (China) by the Republic of Kazakhstan, the People’s Republic of China, the Kyrgyz Republic, the Russian Federation, the Republic of Tajikistan, and the Republic of Uzbekistan.
- It was preceded by the Shanghai Five mechanism.
- The Shanghai Cooperation Organisation Charter was signed during the St. Petersburg SCO Heads of State meeting in June 2002, and entered into force on 19 September 2003.
- The SCO’s official languages are Russian and Chinese.
- Its membership was expanded to include India and Pakistan in 2017.
- The SCO also has four observer states i.e. Afghanistan, Iran, Belarus and Mongolia, which may be inducted at a later date.
- Headquarters: Beijing, China.
Above Image includes all the SCO members.
Organizational Structure of SCO;-
- The organization has two permanent bodies i.e. the SCO Secretariat based in Beijing and the Executive Committee of the Regional Anti-Terrorist Structure (RATS) based in Tashkent.
- The SCO Secretary-General and the Director of the Executive Committee of the SCO RATS are appointed by the Council of Heads of State for a term of three years.
- However, the venue of the SCO council meetings moves between the eight members.
- SCO has the capacity to counterbalance North Atlantic Treaty Organization (NATO), therefore, it is sometimes considered as “alliance of the East”, i.e, the Eastern complementary of NATO.
The SCO’s main goals are as follows:-
- Strengthening mutual trust and neighborliness among the member states.
- Promoting their effective cooperation in politics, trade, the economy, research, technology and culture, as well as in education, energy, transport, tourism, environmental protection, and other areas.
- Making joint efforts to maintain and ensure peace, security and stability in the region and moving towards the establishment of a democratic, fair and rational new international political and economic order.
Focus: GS-III Environment and Ecology
Why in news?
Cities across the country are embarking on the ‘India Cycles4Change’ movement.
India Cycles4Change Challenge
- India Cycles4change Challenge is an initiative of Smart Cities Mission to inspire and support Indian cities to quickly implement cycling-friendly initiatives in response to COVID-19.
- Cities are encouraged to collaborate with CSOs, experts, and volunteers as they develop and implement their plans.
- The need for personalized forms of transport is expected to increase as a response to COVID-19.
- A recent survey by the (Institute for Transportation and Development Policy) ITDP India Programme shows that cycling would increase by 50-65% as cities come out of lockdown.
- Cities around the world are leveraging the opportunity to expand their cycling networks and public bicycle-sharing systems.
- As per ITDP, increasing cycling can help cities in a green economic recovery.
- Cycling for short distances can result in an annual benefit of INR 1.8 trillion to the Indian economy.
Smart Cities Mission
Nodal: Ministry of Housing Urban Development
- National Smart Cities Mission is an urban renewal and retrofitting program by the Government of India with the mission to develop smart cities across the country, making them citizen friendly and sustainable.
- The Union Ministry of Urban Development is responsible for implementing the mission in collaboration with the state governments of the respective cities.
- While the mission initially included only 100 cities, the government later announced to expand the mission to all 4,000 cities in India.
- Smart Cities Mission is supporting interested cities in raising finance through Municipal Bonds.
- The Urban Learning Internship Program (TULIP) is designed for all ULBs (Urban Local Bodies) and Smart City SPVs (Special Purpose Vehicles) to engage fresh graduates as interns.
- Climate Smart Cities and Data Smart Cities are two important programs under Smart Cities Mission.
Definition of “Smart Cities” according to Smart Cities Mission
- Some definitional boundaries are required to guide cities in the Mission.
- In the imagination of any city dweller in India, the picture of a smart city contains a wish list of infrastructure and services that describes his or her level of aspiration.
- To provide for the aspirations and needs of the citizens, urban planners ideally aim at developing the entire urban eco-system, which is represented by the four pillars of comprehensive development-institutional, physical, social and economic infrastructure.
- This can be a long-term goal and cities can work towards developing such comprehensive infrastructure incrementally, adding on layers of ‘smartness’.
MEMBER OF PARLIAMENT LOCAL AREA DEVELOPMENT SCHEME
Focus: Government Policies and Interventions
About the Scheme:
MPLADS is an ongoing Central Sector Scheme which was launched in 1993-94. The Scheme enables the Members of Parliament to recommend works for creation of durable community assets based on locally felt needs to be taken up in their constituencies in the area of national priorities namely drinking water, education, public health, sanitation, roads etc.
The Ministry of Statistics and Programme Implementation has been responsible for the policy formulation, release of funds and prescribing monitoring mechanism for implementation of the Scheme.
- The annual MPLADS fund entitlement per MP constituency is Rs. 5 crore.
- MPs are to recommend every year, works costing at least 15 per cent of the MPLADS entitlement for the year for areas inhabited by Scheduled Caste population and 7.5 per cent for areas inhabited by S.T. population.
- In order to encourage trusts and societies for the betterment of tribal people, a ceiling of Rs. 75 lakh is stipulated for building assets by trusts and societies subject to conditions prescribed in the scheme guidelines.
- Lok Sabha Members can recommend works within their Constituencies and Elected Members of Rajya Sabha can recommend works within the State of Election (with select exceptions).
- Nominated Members of both the Rajya Sabha and Lok Sabha can recommend works anywhere in the country.
- All works to meet locally felt infrastructure and development needs, with an emphasis on creation of durable assets in the constituency are permissible under MPLADS as prescribed in the scheme guidelines.
- Expenditure on specified items of non durable nature are also permitted as listed in the guidelines.
Release of Funds:
- Funds are released in the form of grants in-aid directly to the district authorities.
- The funds released under the scheme are non-lapsable.
- The liability of funds not released in a particular year is carried forward to the subsequent years, subject to eligibility.
Execution of works:
- The MPs have a recommendatory role under the scheme. They recommend their choice of works to the concerned district authorities who implement these works by following the established procedures of the concerned state government.
- The district authority is empowered to examine the eligibility of works sanction funds and select the implementing agencies, prioritise works, supervise overall execution, and monitor the scheme at the ground level.