Archaeological Sites Current Affairs - 2020

Budget 2020: Caring Society: Women and Child, Social Welfare, Culture & Tourism, Env & Climate Change

On February 1, 2020, the Finance Minister Nirmala Sitaraman presented the Budget 2020 on three main themes. The third theme of the budget is Caring Society. Under this theme, the GoI allocated budget to Women and Child, Social Welfare and Tourism, Environment and Climate Change.

The Budget allocated for the above sections of the society are as follows

Women and Child and Social Welfare

Under the Beti Bachao Beti Padao, the Gross Enrolment ratio of girls is higher than boys. Their enrollment is as follows

  • At Elementary level, girls’ enrollment is 94.32% and boys’ is 89.28%
  • At secondary level, girls’ enrollment is 81.32% as against 78% for boys
  • At higher secondary level, girls’ enrollment is 59.7% as compared to 57.54% for boys.

Poshan Abhiyan

To improve health of children in the age of 0 to 6 years of age, adolescent girls and lactating women, Poshan Abhiyan was introduced. More than 6 lakhs Anganwadi workers are equipped with smart phones to upload the status of nutrition of more than 10 crore house hold.

Task Force appointed

The age of marriage for girls was increased from 15 years to 18 years in 1978. This was done by amending the Sharada act (The Child Marriage Restraint Act), 1929. As India progresses further, wider opportunities open up. Also, there is lowering of maternal mortality rates and improvement of nutritional levels. In order to include women in every aspect of such developments, a task force is to be appointed.

FUND ALLOCATION

The Budget 2020-21 allocated 35,600 crores of rupees for the nutrition related programmes. It also allocates 28,600 crores for programmes of women development.

Manual Scavengers

The Ministry of Housing and Urban Affairs has identified suitable technologies for sewerage cleaning. The Ministry is currently working with the urban local bodies for adoption of these technologies. The budget allocates funds to achieve this and also to implement legislative changes. The budget will also allocate funds to support wider acceptance of such technologies.

FUND ALLOCATION

Along with manual scavengers, the other section of the society including scheduled class and OBCs a budget of 85,000 crores has been allocated. For the upliftment of Scheduled Tribes, a budget of 53,700 crores has been allocated. For Senior citizens and Divyangs 9,500 crores has been allocated.

Culture and Tourism

Indian Institute of Heritage and Culture to be established

Under the Ministry of Culture and Tourism, the GoI proposes to establish an Indian Institute of Heritage and Culture. It shall have the status of a Deemed University to start with. It will include course of museology, archaeology and also includes scientific curriculum of those fields.

5 Archaeological sites to be developed

The GoI has allocated funds to develop 5 archaeological sites with museums. They are Rakhigarhi in Haryana, Dholavira in Gujarat, Hastinapur in Uttar Pradesh, Sivasagar in Assam and Adichanallur in Tamil Nadu.

Four more museums are to be renovated. At the historic Old Mint building in Kolkata, a museum on numismatics and trade is to be located.

A tribal Museum at Ranchi, Jharkhand is to be set up.

A Maritime museum to be set up in Lothal, a maritime site of Harappan age. This is to be set up by the Ministry of Shipping.

India’s stand in tourism

India has move up to rank 65 in 2014 to rank 34 in 2019 in the travel and tourism competitive index. The index is prepared by the World Economic Forum. The Foreign Exchange grew 7.4% (between January and November, 2019)

FUND ALLOCATION

For Culture the budget allocated 3,150 crores. For Tourism the GoI allocated 2,500 crores.

ENVIRONMENT AND CLIMATE CHANGE

Closure of old thermal power stations

GoI launched the Global Coalition for Disaster-Resilient Infrastructure in 2015. It will help in addressing the Sustainable Development Goals.

India submitted its Nationally Determined Contribution under Paris Agreement on Climate Change signed in 2015. The implementation begins January 1, 2021. In order to succeed the contributions, GoI has decided to close old thermal power stations. The land vacated are to be put to alternative uses.

Clean air in cities

The cities are to be encouraged to take actions against pollution to provide clean air for the citizens. The budget allocated separate funds to achieve this. However, only cities with population above 1 million are included under this. Incentives will be provided to such cities that are coming forward to implement such measures. The measures will be released by the Ministry of Environment, Forest and Climate Change.

FUND ALLOCATION

GoI allocated 4,400 crores for environment and climate change.

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ASI: Gottiporlu-a historic trade centre

The Archaeological Survey of India has discovered the remains of huge settlement during its first phase of excavation at Gottiprolu near Naidupeta, Nellore, Andhra Pradesh. It has uncovered a mass settlement that was surrounded by a massive brick enclosure

Highlights

  • The experts unearthed the Hindu god, Lord Vishnu sculptures and wide variety of pottery of early centuries of current era
  • The site lies on the bank of Swarnamukhi river
  • Drone images and topographical studies helped in identifying the settlement that is surrounded by a fortification. The fortification was evident in the southern and eastern sides while its other arm seems to have been leveled due to modern settlements

The Brick Enclosure

  • The massive brick enclosure is the outstanding discovery of the excavation. The bricks are baked and exposed to a length of more than 75 metres with average width of 3.4 metres. They rise to a height of 2 metres and run in a curvi linear pattern
  • The Archaeologists also discovered a rectangular brick tank exposed near the inner lining of the curved brick structure

Period of the excavations

  • The brick sizes are comparable with the Satavahan period structures in the River Krishna valley
  • Based on the brick sizes, the period of excavations are placed between 2nd and 1st century BC. They are around 2000 years old

Antiquities

  • A female terracotta figurine with two hands lifted upwards was also retrieved.
  • Interesting pottery were also found. There were conical jars that are widely distributed in Tamil Nadu and are considered to be imitated variety of Roman Amphorae jars.
  • A series of broken terracotta pipes fitted into one another were also revealed. It proves that the period had a good drainage system.

Trade Centre

The presence of these jars prove that it was an important trade centre of the period. Also it implies that liquid commodities were transported as amphorae wares are often used to carry liquid items. Also, the site’s proximity with the sea coast suggests that it could have serves as a strategic settlement involved in maritime trade.

Tools

  • The tools found were made of stones

 

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