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PIB Summaries 20 January 2024

  1. Scheme for Residential Education For Students in High schools in Targeted Areas
  2. Asian Buddhist Conference for Peace (ABCP)


The Central Board of Secondary Education (CBSE) recently issued instructions for Residential Private Schools interested in joining SHRESHTA Scheme


GS II- Welfare schemes


The government has approved a new scheme named SHRESHTA (Residential Education for Students in High Schools in Targeted Areas) for the purpose of providing seats for the meritorious SC boys and girls in the best private residential schools in the country.

National Entrance Test for SHRESHTA

  • Under this, each year a specified number of meritorious SC students (Approx 3000) in States / UTs are selected through a transparent mechanism of a National Entrance Test for SHRESHTA (NETS) , conducted by the National Testing Agency ( NTA ) .
  • Selected students are admitted in the Best Private Residential Schools, affiliated by CBSE, in classes 9th and 11th for completion of education till 12th standard.
  • Thereafter, the students may be connected to Post Metric Scholarship Scheme or Top – Class Education Scheme of the
  • Ministry to continue their further studies with adequate financial aid from the Government of India.

Selection of Schools:

  • For selection of Schools , the Ministry through a committee with the representative of Ministry of Education and CBSE and Finance Division of the Department , has selected the best performing private residential schools affiliated with the CBSE , based on certain parameters such as
    • Schools is in existence for at least for last 5 years
    • Boards results of the schools were more than 75 % in Class 10 and 12 for the last 3 years
    • the Schools have adequate infrastructure for admitting additional at SC students in classes 9th and 11th .

Quality of Education:

  • For ensuring the quality of students in the scheme , the Department has decided to seek the students based on All India Entrance Examination from the National Testing Agency ( NTA ) , which conducts all major exams including JEE / NEET and selection of employee for the Government through SSC and others . 
  • The Ministry intends to provide level playing field to the poor and meritorious SC students, by providing facilities for providing High Quality Education in the CBSE based Private Schools having Residential Facility ( Hostel ) from class 9th to 12th .
  • Entire cost of school fee and hostel fee including food charges shall be borne by the Government of India. The Students under the Scheme may select any school across the country for their academics.
Objectives of the Scheme:
  • To enhance the reach of the development initiative of the government.
  • To fill the gap in service-deprived Scheduled Castes (SCs) dominant areas in the sector of education by collaborating with voluntary organizations.
  • To provide an environment for socio-economic upliftment and overall development of the Scheduled Castes (SCs).
  • To provide access to high-quality education to bright Scheduled Caste (SC) students so that they can explore future opportunities.


The Indian Vice President recently inaugurated the 12th General Assembly of the Asian Buddhist Conference for Peace in New Delhi.


GS II: International Relations

Asian Buddhist Conference for Peace (ABCP)

Inception and Vision:

  • Founded in 1970 in Ulaanbaatar, Mongolia, the Asian Buddhist Conference for Peace (ABCP) stands as a voluntary movement uniting both monastic and lay followers of Buddhism. Its primary objective is to harmonize the endeavors of Buddhists towards fostering universal peace, collaboration, and harmony among the people of Asia.

Headquarters and Leadership:

  • Presently headquartered at the Ganden Tegchenling Monastery in Ulaanbaatar, Mongolia, the ABCP is led by the Supreme Head of Mongolian Buddhists, who serves as the President of the conference.

Historical Context:

  • The roots of ABCP trace back to the geopolitics of the Cold War era, where peace movements sought alliances and outreach. In 1970, prominent Buddhist leaders, including Venerable Gabji Samaagiin Gombojav and Venerable Kushok Bakula Rinpoche, convened to officially establish ABCP with an enduring base in Ulaanbaatar.

International Participation:

  • Actively engaging participants from Mongolia, Japan, India, Laos, Vietnam, Cambodia, Bhutan, Russian Far East, Sri Lanka, Thailand, and other regional nations, ABCP emerged as a platform for collective Buddhist efforts.

UN Recognition:

  • Acknowledging its substantial contributions to global well-being, ABCP attained observer status in the UN’s Economic and Social Council in 1988, underscoring its commitment to humanity’s welfare.

February 2024