UNESCO Current Affairs - 2019

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MP’s Orchha Town added to UNESCO WHS Tentative List

The architectural heritage of Orchha town which is one of the prime tourist draws in Madhya Pradesh has been included in tentative list of United Nations Educational, Scientific and Cultural Organization’s (UNESCO’s) World Heritage Sites.


The Orcha town was included in tentative list of cultural heritage following a proposal sent by the Archaeological Survey of India (ASI) to the United Nations body on 15 April 2019. As per the rules, for any heritage or any historical site to be included in UNESCO’s World Heritage Sites (WHS) it has first to be included on tentative list. After it makes to tentative list, another proposal is sent to UNESCO for its final addition in heritage sites.

About Orcha Town

  • Location: Orchha town is located in Niwari district of Madhya Pradesh’s Bundelkhand region. It lies on banks of river Betwa (around 80 km from MP’s Tikamgarh district) and 15 km from Jhansi district of UP.
  • Built: It was built in 16th century during the reign of Bundela dynasty by its King Rudra Pratap Singh.
  • Unique: It is the only place in India where Lord Ram is worshipped as a king (not in God form) with a dedicated temple in his name called Sri Ram Raja Mandir.
  • Famous: The ancient town is famous for its two elevated minaret popularly called as Saavan and Bhadon, and its four palaces named as Raj Mahal, Jahangir Palace, Rai Praveen Mahal and Sheesh Mahal. It is also famous for its concept of open bungalows, stone work windows, animal statues that depicts culture of Bundelkhand.
  • Bundela Architectural delights: The Orchha town has a peculiar style of architecture used by Bundela dynasty. Bundela architecture has had a Mughal influence. The town is famous for its Orchha Fort complex, Chaturbhuj Temple and Raja Mahal among other architectural delights.

Key Facts

  • There are 37 Indian heritage sites on the UNESCO World Heritage list.
  • If architectural splendour of Orchha makes it to UNESCO’s World Heritage Sites’s final list then it would be India’s 38th site to form part of the treasured list.
  • Three historically famous sites in Madhya Pradesh which are among 37 Indian sites, includes Buddhist monuments at Sanchi, rock shelters of Bhimbedka and Khajuraho group of monuments.

Month: Categories: Art & Culture


UNESCO: Women still under-represented in Science and Technology

According to analysis by The United Nations Educational, Scientific and Cultural Organization (UNESCO), women remain considerably under-represented across STEM (science, technology, engineering and math) studies and careers.

Key Highlights

  • Statistics: According to UNESCO, globally only 29% of those in science research and development (R&D) are women, with a low 19% in south and west Asia and high 48% in central Asia.
  • Reason: Most young women do not identify with STEM studies or careers and assume that these subjects would not align with their desire to be creative and make an impact in world.
  • Consequences: As per experts this trend would further widen the gender gap in technology world and by shying away from STEM Women will also miss contributing to next generation of technologies and innovations.


  • Teachers and technologists must take up responsibility to break misperception among women that STEM does not relate to world at large.
  • They must build passion for STEM subjects among women students by designing computer science curricula around societal challenges and giving young women more exposure to female role models.
  • Improving Awareness:
  • Example- Microsoft, the technology major has taken up an initiative to encourage women to pursue careers in STEM and is working to get students and young women excited about STEM subjects.
  • Such initiatives help raise awareness about issues that cause girls to drop out of or lose interest in STEM and aims to hold their excitement by showing them that if they stay engaged how they can change the world.

Steps Taken By UNESCO

  • To strengthen and focus UNESCO’s work in support of gender equality in Science, Technology and Innovation (STI) it launched STEM and Gender Advancement (SAGA) project in 2015. It is a global UNESCO project supported by Swedish Government through the Swedish International Development Cooperation Agency (Sida).
  • It offers governments and policymakers a variety of tools to help reduce current global gender gap existing at all levels of education and research in STI fields.

Month: Categories: Reports & Indices