Daily Prelims Newsletter|29 July 2021|RaghukulCS|UPSC

Daily Prelims Newsletter For UPSC
| RaghukulCS

29 July 2021-Thrusday

Table Of Contents

Art and Culture

  • Dholavira

Governmental Initiatives

  • Mahatma Gandhi National Rural Employment Guarantee Scheme (MGNREGS)

International Relations

  • PM Kisan

Places in News

  • Israel
  • South China Sea

Art and Culture


Why in News?

Recently, UNESCO announced the Harappan city of Dholavira as India’s 40thworld heritage site.
It is the first site of IVC in India to be included on this list.
Other than India only Italy, Spain, Germany, China and France have 40 or more sites included as World Heritage Sites.

About Dholavira:

  • It was discovered in 1968 by an archaeologist Jagat Pati Joshi.
  • It was an urban settlement of theIVC.
  • The site has a fortified citadel, a middle town and a lower town with walls of sandstone or limestone instead of mud bricks in most of other Harappan sites.
  • It has a unique system of water management, multi-layered defensive, extensive use of stone in construction and special burial structures.
  • During the excavations, artefacts made of copper and stone; jewellery of terracotta, gold and ivory were discovered.
  • Unlike graves at some other IVC sites, no mortal remains of humans were discovered at Dholavira.
  • Remains of a copper smelter were found indicating that Harappans living in Dholavira, knew metallurgy.


  • Located at Kachchh District, in Gujarat.
  • It is located on the Tropic of Cancer.

    Decline of Dholavira:

    • Its decline coincided with the collapse of Mesopotamia, indicating the possibility of integration of economies.
    • Dholavira later entered a phase of severe aridity due to effects of climate change and rivers like Saraswati drying up.
    • Due to a drought-like situation, people started migrating toward the Ganges valley or towards south Gujarat and further beyond present-day Maharashtra.

    Governmental Initiatives

    Mahatma Gandhi National Rural Employment Guarantee Scheme (MGNREGS)

    Why in News?

    More than half of the funds allocated for the MGNREGS in the current financial year (2021-2022) has been utilised in just three-and-a-half months into the fiscal, reflecting the pressure on rural India to generate more employment.


    • It was launched in 2006.
    • It is acclaimed as one of the largest work guarantee programmes in the world.
    • Objective: Guarantee 100 days of employment in every financial year to adult members of any rural household willing to do public work-related unskilled manual work.
    • Legal Right to Work: It aims to addressing the causes of chronic poverty through a rights-based framework.
    • At least one-third of beneficiaries must be women.
    • Wages are to be paid according to the statutory minimum wages specified for agricultural labourers in the state under the Minimum Wages Act, 1948.
    • Demand-Driven Scheme: The most iconic part of MGNREGA’s design is its legally backed guarantee for any rural adult to get work within 15 days of demanding it, failing which there is a provision of ‘unemployment allowance’ to the job seeker.
    • Decentralised planning: Significant role of Panchayati Raj Institutions (PRIs) in planning and implementing these works.
    • The act mandates Gram sabhas to recommend the works that are to be undertaken and at least 50% of the works must be executed by the Gram Sabha itself.

    International Relations

    PM Kisan:

    Why in News?

    In a written reply to Lok Sabha,GoI stated that about ₹3000 crore would be recovered from 42 lakh ineligible beneficiaries under PM-KISAN.

    About PM Kisan:

    • PM-KISAN is a Central Sector Schemee., has 100% funding from the Government of India.
    • Under Ministry of Agriculture and Farmer’s Welfare.
    • Under this scheme, the Centre transfers an amount of Rs 6,000 per year, in three equal instalments directly into the bank accounts (DBT) of beneficiaries.
    • Beneficiary: All the landholding farmers irrespective of the size of their land holdings (there are some exceptions to eligibility as well).
    • It intends to supplement farmers’ income and help in procuring various inputs to ensure proper crop health and appropriate yields.
    • The identification of beneficiary farmer families is done by the State / UT Governments.
    • Similar Income support schemes are also announced by several states like
      • Telangana’s Rythu Bandhu scheme,
      • Odisha’s Krushak Assistance for Livelihood and Income Augmentation (KALIA) scheme

    Places in Newss


    Why in News?

    Tensions are escalating across Israel-Palestine border.

    About Israel:

    • Neighbouring Countries: Lebanon, Syria, Jordan, and Egypt.
    • Neighbouring oceans: Mediterranean Sea and the Gulf of Aqaba.

    Related Information:

    Key Defence technologies imported by India from Israel are:

    • BARAK missile: The surface-to-air missile is a low-range air defence interceptor. Indian version of BARAK is called BARAK-8.
    • Phalcon Sensors: This airborne warning and control system (AWACS), is hailed as Indian Airforce Force’s “eyes in the skies”. It performs surveillance and intelligence gathering beyond visual range to warn against the incoming missiles or aircrafts in the airspace.

    South China Sea

    Why in News?

    Looking at China’s growing assertiveness in the South China Sea, the USA has stated that Beijing’s expansive claims in the region have no basis in international law.

    About South China Sea:

    • It is an extension of the Western Pacific Ocean in Southeast Asia.
    • It is connected by Taiwan Strait with the East China Sea and also by Luzon Strait with the Philippine Sea.
    • Bordering states & territories: The People’s Republic of China, Taiwan, Philippines, Brunei, Indonesia, Malaysia, Singapore, and Vietnam.
    • Important islands: Paracel, Spratly, Scarborough Shoal.

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