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To celebrate Diversity, Centre is hunting for Curators to design India’s First Museum on Indian Diaspora at Chanakyapuri in Delhi

India’s annual jamboree has been selected as the ideal occasion for the announcement of the museum for the diaspora

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A museum will come up in Chanakyapuri to ceebrate Indian diaspora
India's Prime Minister Narendra Modi celebrating Indian diversity via museum VOA
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New Delhi, Dec 31, 2016: Over the years many communities have made India their homeland. To celebrate this diversity the Narendra Modi government is hunting for curators to design and build India’s first museum on the Indian diaspora.

Successive Indian governments have faced huge criticisms from section of diaspora that New Delhi hasn’t appreciated enough their efforts in spreading India’s soft power globally, senior officials told The Telegraph. This museum is an effort to subvert this criticism.

The trials and suffering that generations of Indian emigrants weathered before achieving success in their respective countries will be displayed in here- and even their efforts in keeping alive for centuries, India’s cultural traditions and languages in foreign lands.

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India’s annual jamboree has been selected as the ideal occasion for the announcement of the museum for the diaspora, the Pravasi Bharatiya Divas, in Bangalore on January 9.

Indian diaspora is the second largest with 27 million, while China is having around 50 million-strong oversees population. This estimate was last updated by the government earlier this year. The Mexican diaspora – around 14 million, mostly in the US – ranks third in size.

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In an era where political leaders on extreme Right are stocking the rising anti-immigrant sentiments in US and Europe. The plan to honor and celebrate the Indian diaspora comes in with a new vigor.

“The museum shall showcase the historical evolution of the diaspora in various parts of the world,” a note on the museum initiative prepared by the ministry of external affairs said. “The museum shall also symbolize various achievements of the diaspora based on their aspirations while maintaining their cultural identity and civilizational ethos in and around the world.”

A newly constructed four-storey building in Chanakyapuri, considered as the capital’s diplomatic enclave is selected as the location for the museum. It will be called Pravasi Bharatiya Kendra. The Kendra was built as a complex of conference halls, restaurants, a banquet hall, lounges and a library. It was formally declared open earlier this year – its construction had started in 2011 under the then Manmohan Singh government.

The museum would be on the first floor of the building, in a wide and open area, with space dedicated to permanent exhibits and to temporary exhibitions. Mahatma Gandhi’s journey as an Indian who lived for years abroad will feature prominently in the museum – as will a depiction of the history of migration of Indians over the past two centuries.

According to the officials the museum will also have a more contemporary edge. It will capture the achievements of persons of Indian origin across the world and the experiences of the Indian diaspora in different countries – including those like Fiji and Uganda from where they once had to flee.

prepared by Saptaparni Goon of NewsGram. Twitter: @saptaparni_goon

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India China’s Fight Over the Doklam Plateau Explained

Doklam or Donglang, is a disputed area between China and Bhutan located near their tri-junction with India

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picture from- indiaopines.com

By Ruchika Verma

  • India and China have an old history of disputes
  • This time, the dispute is regarding the Dokplam Plateau
  • The area is of strategic importance for both the nations

Disputes between India and China are not at all uncommon. The rivalry between the two nations is famous. There have been several disputes between the two on the India-China border in past, and there seems to be no stopping for these disputes in the present or future, for that matter.

India and China have a n old history of repeated disputes. zeenews.india.com
India and China have an old history of repeated disputes. zeenews.india.com

In June 2017, the world witnessed yet another dispute arising between India and China. This time the dispute was about China building a road extending to Doklam Plateau, which both nations have been fighting over for years now.

Also Read: China is likely to get involved if India disrupts $46 billion China-Pakistan Economic Corridor

History of the dispute 

Doklam or Donglang (in Chinese), is a disputed area between China and Bhutan located near their tri-junction with India. India doesn’t directly claim the area but supports Bhutan’s claims on it.

India fits into the picture, as this plateau is an important area for India. Not only is Bhutan one of the biggest allies of India; China gaining access over the Doklam Plateau will also endanger India’s borders, making them vulnerable to attacks.

Dopkam plateau is an important area near India, China and Bhutan's borders.
Dopkam plateau is an important area near India, China and Bhutan’s borders.

Apart from the hostile history of the two nations, the Doklam Plateau is also important for India to maintain its control over a land corridor that connects to its remote northeastern States. China building a road through Doklam surely threatens that control.

A complete timeline of what happened in the recent Doklam Standoff 

On 16 June 2017, Chinese troops with construction vehicles and excavators began extending an existing road southward on the Doklam plateau, near India’s border. It was Bhutan which raised the alarm for India.

On 18 June 2017, India responded by sending around 270 Indian troops, with weapons and two bulldozers to evict the Chinese troops from Doklam.

On 29 June 2017, Bhutan protested against the construction of a road in the disputed territory.  According to the Bhutanese government, China attempted to extend a road in an area which is shared both Bhutan and India, along with China.

Between 30 June 2017 and 5 July 2017, China released multiple statements justifying their claim over the Doklam plateau. They cited reasons as to why the Doklam standoff wasn’t really needed. And how China has not intruded into India’s territory to incite the standoff.

On 19th July 2017, China asked India again to withdraw its troops from the Doklam. On 24th July 2017,  Chinese Foreign Minister Wang Yi, in his statement, asked India to withdraw and behave themselves to maintain peace.

India and China seem to never agree when it comes to their borders. BBC
India and China seem to never agree when it comes to their borders. BBC

Also Read: Why India Must Counter China’s High-Altitude Land Grab?

What followed till 16th August 2017 was China constantly alleging India of trying to create trouble. They accused India of trying to disturb the peace and not withdrawing the troops, even after repeated reminders. They also accused India of bullying.

India, however, kept quiet during the whole fiasco, only releasing a statement regarding their stand and position at the Doklam standoff.

On 28 August 2017, India and China finally announced that they had agreed to pull their troops back from the Doklam standoff. The withdrawal was completed on that very day.

On 7 September 2017, many media reports claimed that both nation’s troops have not left the site completely. They were still patrolling the area, simply having moved 150 meters away from their previous position.

On 9 October 2017, China announced that it is ready to maintain peace with India at the frontiers. India reacted in affirmative, the peace was established when Indian Defence Minister, Nirmala Sitharaman’s visited Nathu La.

The issue between the two nations may rise again. Pixabay
The issue between the two nations may rise again. Pixabay

The Doklam issue, for now, is resolved. However, given the history of disputes between India and China, it won’t be a surprise if the issue resurfaces again in near future.