Buddhists Current Affairs - 2019

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Sri Lankan President bans On Face-Covering in Public

Sri Lankan President Maithripala Sirisena used his emergency powers to issue an order to ban burqa, veil or covering of face in public places in any manner which prevents anyone from being identified.

Key Highlights

The order which came into immediate effect explicitly defines that any garment or item which obstructs identification of an individual’s face is barred. It is placed to ensure national security, establish peaceful and cohesive society and not aimed at inconvenience to any community people.

Reason: The decision was taken in aftermath of Easter Sunday blasts which took place across eight locations, including three prominent churches and three hotels in island nation, in which more than 250 people were killed.

In a bid to help stabilize security situation, some Muslim organisations came forward and suggested a ban on burqa. Even local Muslim clerics urged their women not to cover their faces in escalating fears of backlash after the attacks. Most Sri Lankan Muslims practice liberal form of religion, with only very small percentage of women wearing niqab (a full face veil).

Religious Demography in Sri Lanka: With only 21 million population Sri Lanka is a multi-religious nation with mix ethnicities, and is dominated by Sinhalese Buddhist majority. As per 2012 census 70.1% of population is Buddhists, 12.6% Hindus, 9.7% Muslims and 7.6% Christians. With most Sinhalese being Buddhist, most Tamils are Hindu and Moors and Malays are mostly Muslim.

Month: Categories: International


Steps to Strengthen the functioning of the NMDFC

The following steps have been taken to assist the National Minority Development Finance Corporation (NMDFC) for effective implementation of its schemes:

  • The Ministry of Minority Affairs is providing grant-in-aid assistance for strengthening the infrastructure & operational capability of State Channelising Agencies (SCAs), for effective implementation of NMDFC schemes.
  • A new Annual Family Income eligibility criterion of up to Rs.6.00 lacs per annum has been introduced for greater coverage of persons from the targeted minority communities.
  • Quantum of loans under the Term Loan scheme increased from Rs.10.00 lacs to Rs.30.00 lacs, while under Micro Finance scheme, it has been increased from Rs.0.50 lacs to Rs.1.50 lacs per SHG member.
  • Under the Education Loan scheme, the quantum of loan has been increased from Rs.5.00 lacs to Rs.20.00 lacs for domestic courses & from Rs.10.00 lacs to Rs.30.00 lacs for courses abroad.
  • Self Declaration/Self Certification/Self Attestation of documents has been adopted in case of Religion Certificate, Family Income, Residence Proof, Mark Sheet, etc.
  • Transfer of loan directly in Bank Account of Beneficiary through National Electronic Funds Transfer (NEFT)/ Real Time Gross Settlement (RTGS) Insurance of beneficiary and their assets to safeguard against any untoward incident.

National Minorities Development and Finance Corporation (NMDFC)

The National Minorities Development and Finance Corporation (NMDFC) is a not for profit company under the companies act 1956. It works under the aegis of Union Ministry of Minority Affairs and was constituted in 1994.

Minority Communities in India

The notified Minorities under the National Commission  for Minorities Act, 1992, are Muslims, Christians, Sikhs, Buddhists & Parsis. Jain community was also added into the list of notified Minority Communities in January 2014.

NMDFC aims to provide concessional finance to the notified Minorities for the self-employment/ income generation activities.

Month: Categories: Governance & PoliticsUPSC