UPSC Prelims News of 12 October 2022
Mahakal Lok Corridor
Context: Prime Minister of India inaugurated the first phase of the ‘Shri Mahakal Lok’ corridor in Madhya Pradesh’s Ujjain.
About Mahakaleshwar Corridor
- Mahakal Maharaj Mandir Parisar Vistar Yojna is a plan for the expansion, beautification, and decongestion of the Mahakaleshwar temple and its adjoining area in Ujjain district.
- Under the plan, the Mahakaleshwar temple premises of around 2.82 hectares is being increased to 47 hectares, which will be developed in two phases by the Ujjain district administration.
- This will include the 17 hectares of Rudrasagar Lake.
- The project is expected to increase annual footfall in the city from the current 1.50 crore to nearly three crore.
Significance of Mahakaleshwar Temple in Hinduism
- Mahakaleshwar, which means the ‘Lord of time’, refers to Lord Shiva.
- As per Hindu scriptures, the temple was constructed by Lord Brahma and is presently located alongside the holy river Shipra (a tributary of Chambal River).
- Mahakaleshwar Jyotirlinga in Ujjain is one of the 12 jyotirlingas considered the most sacred abodes of Shiva.
- As per records, the temple’s Mahakal Lingam is believed to be Swayambhu (self-manifested) and unlike any other jyotirlingas in the country, the idol of Mahakaleshwar faces south.
- The shrine is revered as one the 18 Maha Shaktia Peeth in India.
Historical facts about Mahakaleshwar Temple
- The temple finds a mention in the Meghadutam composed in the 4th century by Kalidasa.
- In the 13th century, the temple complex was destroyed by Turk ruler Shams-ud-din Iltutmish during his raid on Ujjain.
- The temple in its present form was built by the Maratha general Ranoji Shinde in 1734 CE.
Who governs the Mahakaleshwar Temple?
- Before Independence, the Dev Sthan Trust used to look after the temple.
- This was replaced by the municipal corporation of Ujjain post-Independence. The collectorate office of Ujjain district now manages the administration of the temple.
India’s Geospatial Economy
Context: The Second United Nations World Geospatial Information Congress (UN-WGIC) 2022 was held in Hyderabad.
More on the News
- As per the government, India’s geospatial economy is expected to cross Rs 63,000 crore by 2025 at a growth rate of 12.8% and to provide employment to more than 10 lakh people mainly through Geospatial Start-Ups.’
What is Geospatial technology?
- Geospatial technologies is a term used to describe the range of modern tools contributing to the geographic mapping and analysis of the Earth and human societies.
- It is an emerging field of study that includes Geographic Information System (GIS), Remote Sensing (RS), Global Positioning System (GPS) and 3D Modelling.
- Many fields use geospatial technologies, including cartography, transportation, logistics, agriculture, urban planning, meteorology, and healthcare.
Current Status of Geospatial Sector in India
- According to India Geospatial Artha Report 2021, the Indian geospatial economy is currently valued at Rs 38,972 crore and employs approximately 4.7 lakh people.
- India has a robust ecosystem in geospatial, with the Survey of India (SoI), ISRO, remote sensing application centres (RSAC) s, and the National Informatics Centre (NIC).
- The past decade has seen an increase in the use of geo-spatial data in daily life with various apps. These include food delivery apps like Swiggy or Zomato, e-commerce like Amazon, cab hailing apps like Ola and Uber and many weather apps.
Context: Modhera village in Gujarat’s Mehsana district has been declared as India’s first solar-powered village.
More on the News:
- More than 1000 solar panels have been installed on the village houses to generate 1kW electricity round the clock for the villagers. Solar electricity will be provided free of cost.
- Both the central and state governments have invested more than Rs 80 crore in this solar-development project in two phases.
Modhera Sun Temple:
- Modhera Sun temple is located on the river Pushpavati. It was built during the reign of King Bhima-I of the Chaulukya dynasty in 1026-27. It is a UNESCO World Heritage site.
- Architecture: The temple complex is constructed in Māru-Gurjara style (Chaulukya style). The temple complex has three components: the shrine (garbhagriha) in a hall (gudhamandapa), the assembly hall (sabhamandapa) and a sacred reservoir (kunda).
- Features: The temple is constructed in such a way that during every equinox, the first ray of the rising sun would fall on a diamond placed on the head of the Sun God. The shrine would be lit up with a golden glow.
- Historical evidence: Modhera is mentioned in the ancient scriptures like Skanda Purana and Brahma Purana. Modhera and its surrounding regions are referred as Dharmaranya.
Context: Israel and Lebanon have announced a historic deal, aimed at resolving a long-running maritime border dispute over Mediterranean waters.
Origin of Dispute:
- The issue is more than a decade old when both the countries declared overlapping boundaries in the Mediterranean Sea.
- Since both the countries do not have diplomatic relations, the UN was asked to resolve the issue.
- The dispute gained significance after Israel discovered two gas fields in the disputed region.
- The agreement aims to settle competing claims of Israel and Lebanon over offshore gas fields in the eastern Mediterranean Sea.
- The gas field is located on the maritime boundary between the two nations and this agreement would allow both countries to get royalties from the gas.
- The agreement will also demarcate border between the maritime waters of Lebanon and Israel for the first time.