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Prime Minister inaugurates International Basava Convention

Prime Minister Narendra Modi has unveiled translated volumes of Vachana in 23 Indian languages on the occasion of Basava Jayanti. The 23 Vachana volumes were edited by late M M Kalburgi and have been translated into other languages by more than 200 people. Prime Minister also released the digital version of the work. This is the first ever celebration of Basava Jayanti at the national level in New Delhi.

The translated volumes of Vachana was commissioned by the Basava Samithi at a cost of 2.5 crore rupees of which the Karnataka government has contributed 1 crore rupees. The celebrations also coincide with golden jubilee of Basava Samiti that was set up by former Vice President B D Jatti 1964 to spread in Basavannas message.

Vachana is a prosaic form very much popular in the Kannada literature. It propagates values of universal brotherhood. It was penned by Basavanna and other saints. The 12th-century social reformer Basavanna used this style of writing to spread social awareness and bring equality in the 12th-century society.


Basavanna was a 12th-century philosopher, statesman, Kannada poet and a social reformer who lived in Karnataka during the reign of the Kalachuri-dynasty king Bijjala I. He served as the chief minister of his kingdom.

Basavanna rejected gender or social discrimination, superstitions and rituals. During his tenure as Chief Minister, he introduced many new public institutions like Anubhava Mantapa (“hall of spiritual experience”) that would facilitate men and women from all socio-economic backgrounds to have a healthy and open discuss on various spiritual and mundane questions of life. A 13th-century sacred Telugu text, the Basava purana by Palkuriki Somanatha offers a full account of Basava’s life and ideas.

In 2003, former President of India Abdul Kalam inaugurated Basaveshwar’s statue in the Parliament of India. In 2015, Prime Minister Narendra Modi inaugurated the statue of Basaveshwara along the bank of the river Thames in London.


India, Japan ink ten agreements including civil nuclear deal

India and Japan signed have ten agreements to boost the bilateral cooperation between the two nations.

The agreements were signed in presence of Prime Minister Narendra Modi and his Japanese counterpart Shinzo Abe in Tokyo, Japan.

Agreements signed are

  • Agreement for Cooperation in Peaceful uses of Nuclear Energy: It provides for bilateral cooperation in the field of Nuclear Energy. It will help to strengthen of energy security of India, by facilitating development of nuclear power projects in India. It will also open up the door for collaboration between Indian and Japanese industries in our Civil Nuclear programme.
  • Memorandum of Cooperation (MOC) on the Manufacturing Skill Transfer Promotion Program: It envisages training 30,000 Indian youth in the Japanese styled manufacturing in the next 10 years. It will be achieved through programmes of Japan-India Institute for Manufacturing (JIM) and the Japanese Endowed Courses (JEC) in select Engineering colleges. It will contribute to ‘Make in India’ and ‘Skill India’.
  • MoU on Cooperation in the Field of Outer Space: It was signed between ISRO and JAXA. It provides for cooperation in planetary exploration, satellite navigation and space industry promotion, joint use of ground systems, joint missions and studies for mutual support and personnel exchange.
  • MoU on Mutual Collaboration in Marine and Earth Science and Technology: It was signed between Ministry of Earth Sciences (MoES) and Japan Agency for Marine-Earth Science and Technology (JAMSTEC). For more information click here
  • MoC in the Field of Agriculture and Food Related Industry: It seeks to deepen the bilateral cooperation in the fields of agriculture and food industries. It includes industries related to food value chain networking and protecting Geographical Indication (GI) of agriculture products.
  • MoU for Transport and Urban Development: It was signed between National Investment and Infrastructure Fund (NIIF) Limited and Japan Overseas Infrastructure Investment Corporation (JICA). It will enable cooperation for promoting investment in infrastructure projects in transportation and railways, port terminals, toll roads, logistics, airport terminals, urban development and any supporting industries for these sectors.
  • MoU in the Field of Textiles: It aims to improve quality of Indian Textiles for conformity assessment for Japanese market.
  • MOC in the Field of Cultural Exchange: It seeks to promote bilateral cooperation in the field of art & culture between both countries. It includes exchange of exhibitions & personnel in performing and visual arts, exchange of exhibitions and experts from museums, cooperation in preserving the cultural heritage and to promote people-to-people exchanges.
  • MoC on Cooperation in Sports: It seeks to provide a framework for bilateral cooperation in the field of Sports ahead of the forthcoming 2020 Tokyo Olympics and Paralympics.
  • MOU between Gujarat and Hyogo Prefectural Government: It seeks to promote mutual cooperation between Hyogo and Gujarat in the fields of business, academics, cultural cooperation, disaster management and environmental protection.


President Pranab Mukherjee launches Akashvani Maitree Channel for listeners in Bangladesh

President Pranab Mukherjee launched Akashvani Maitree (Moitree) Channel and its multimedia website in Bengali language for listeners in West Bengal, Bangladesh and the adjoining areas.

Akashvani Moitree Channel is an initiative of Kolkata Akashvani Kendra. It will provide a platform for blending content both from India and Bangladesh and preserving Bengali culture.

Key Facts

  • The channel will be broadcasted from a state-of-the-art brand new high power 1000Kw DRM (Digital Radio Mondiale) transmitter in Chinsurah (West Bengal).
  • It has capacity to reach the entire length and breadth of Bangladesh through medium wave and will be also available globally on its website and mobile app for Bengali Diaspora.
  • The concept of the Akashvani Moitree Channel emanates from the decision taken during the visit of Prime Minister Narendra Modi to Bangladesh.
  • Both sides had agreed to share content among their broadcasting organisations in order to broadcast a mix of news and cultural programming.

What is Akashvani Maitree?

The All India Radio (AIR) during the Bangladesh Liberation Movement in 1971 had launched Akashvani Maitree, a Bangla radio service. The channel had played a historic role during the Bangladesh liberation movement. However, it was discontinued in 2010.

Why it is launched again?

  • The relaunch of Akashvani Maitree is being looked as an outreach to strengthen India’s shaky relations with Bangladesh as a part of its cultural diplomacy.
  • The service is being re-launched twin objectives: (i) To attract Bengali-speaking listeners from both countries. (ii) To counter the presence of CRI (Chinese Radio International) with its strong presence in the region.
  • The channel will also play a significant role in promoting and preserving the composite Bengali cultural heritage irrespective of geographical location.