Tuesday, 27th June 2023

Table of contents

1   Daily Current Affairs


India and Egypt Relation - Edukemy Current Affairs


Global Liveability Index - Edukemy Current Affairs


India-US Trade Dispute at WTO - Edukemy Current Affairs


Role of Punjab and Haryana in de-risking the Indian Economy


World Bank: Toolkit to Support Countries After Natural Disasters


Pollution due to Thermal Power Plant


Significance of plant literacy in understanding climate change


Ambubachi Mela - Edukemy Current Affairs


Chiral Bose-liquid state - Edukemy Current Affairs


Cord blood banking - Edukemy Current Affairs


Drugs harmful to vultures - Edukemy Current Affairs


Joha rice - Edukemy Current Affairs


Belgium - Edukemy Current Affairs

2   Daily Editorial Analysis


Outreach to diaspora and statesmanship

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Daily Current Affairs

India and Egypt Relation - Edukemy Current Affairs

In News: Recently, India's Prime minister visited Egypt.

India and Egypt share a long-standing history of cultural and diplomatic ties. Over the years, the bilateral relationship between these two nations has strengthened, encompassing various sectors such as trade, defense, tourism, and cultural exchange. This article explores the key aspects and recent developments in the India-Egypt relationship.

Historical Background:

  • Ancient civilizational links: India and Egypt have had historical and cultural connections dating back to ancient times. Both civilizations have interacted through trade routes and shared knowledge in fields such as astronomy, mathematics, and medicine.
  • Non-Aligned Movement: India and Egypt were among the founding members of the Non-Aligned Movement, which played a significant role during the Cold War era in promoting the principles of neutrality, sovereignty, and mutual cooperation.

Diplomatic Relations:

  • Establishment of diplomatic ties: India and Egypt established diplomatic relations in 1947, shortly after India's independence. The bilateral ties were further reinforced through the opening of resident missions in New Delhi and Cairo.
  • High-level visits: The relationship has been strengthened through regular high-level visits between leaders of both countries. These visits have served as platforms for discussions on various issues of mutual interest and have contributed to enhancing cooperation.

Economic Cooperation:

  • Trade and Investment: Economic cooperation forms a vital pillar of India-Egypt relations. Bilateral trade between the two countries has witnessed significant growth, with a focus on sectors such as pharmaceuticals, textiles, machinery, and information technology. Both nations have also encouraged investment opportunities, leading to joint ventures and collaborations.
  • Bilateral agreements: India and Egypt have signed several bilateral agreements to promote economic cooperation, including agreements on trade, investment protection, double taxation avoidance, and agriculture. These agreements provide a framework for enhancing economic engagement.

Defense and Security Cooperation:

  • Military cooperation: India and Egypt have collaborated in the defense sector through the exchange of defense-related delegations, joint military exercises, and training programs. This cooperation has contributed to enhancing the capabilities of both countries' armed forces.
  • Counterterrorism: India and Egypt have cooperated closely in the fight against terrorism. Both countries have faced common challenges and have exchanged information and intelligence to counter the menace of terrorism and extremism.


Cultural and People-to-People Exchanges:

  • Cultural exchanges: India and Egypt have a rich cultural heritage, and both countries have fostered cultural exchanges through events such as festivals, exhibitions, and performances. These exchanges help in promoting mutual understanding and strengthen people-to-people contacts.
  • Educational ties: Educational cooperation between India and Egypt has expanded over the years. Indian universities attract Egyptian students, while scholarships and exchange programs facilitate academic collaborations and promote educational linkages.

Recent Developments:

  • COVID-19 cooperation: India and Egypt have cooperated in combating the COVID-19 pandemic. India has provided medical supplies, vaccines, and technical assistance to Egypt to support its efforts in tackling the crisis.
  • Renewable energy collaboration: Both countries have shown interest in collaborating on renewable energy projects. India's expertise in the field of solar energy aligns with Egypt's renewable energy goals, opening avenues for collaboration in this sector.

The relationship between India and Egypt is characterized by historical ties, shared values, and cooperation in various sectors. The strengthening of diplomatic, economic, defense, and cultural ties between the two countries reflects a commitment to fostering mutual prosperity and strategic partnership. As both nations continue to collaborate and engage, the India-Egypt relationship is expected to further deepen in the years to come.

Keywords: GS-2 International relations
Daily Current Affairs

Global Liveability Index - Edukemy Current Affairs

Why in News: Recently, the Economist Intelligence Unit released Global Liveability Index 2023.

About Global Liveability Index:

  • It is released by the Economist Intelligence Unit (EIU).
  • EIU (founded in 1946 and HQ: London) is the research and analysis division of the Economist Group.
  • Living conditions in 172 cities in the world have been rated based on five categories: Stability; Healthcare; Culture and Environment; Education; Infrastructure.

Observations Related to Developing Countries' Progress:

  • According to the report, developing nations have experienced gradual improvements in their livability rankings, with significant progress seen in Asia-Pacific cities. In contrast, Western European cities have seen a decline in their rankings for the year 2023.
  • The report emphasizes the increasing focus on healthcare and education in countries across Asia, Africa, and the Middle East, which indicates a positive trend toward better livability. However, it also highlights a decrease in stability scores due to civil unrest in specific regions of the world.

Key findings of the report:

  • Vienna (Austria), Copenhagen (Denmark), and Melbourne (Australia) are the top 3 most liveable cities in the world in 2023.
  • Damascus (Syria) – 173rd, Tripoli (Libya) – 172nd, and Algiers (Algeria) – 171st are the bottom 3 cities in the list.
  • From India: New Delhi and Mumbai (141st position), Chennai (144th position), Ahmedabad (147th position) and Bengaluru (148th position).
  • From Asia: Only Osaka (Japan) – 9th position among the top 10 cities.
  • The average index score this year is 2 (out of 100), higher than last year (73.2). This increase reflects global recovery from the pandemic.




Keywords: General Studies – 3: Economy, International Indices
Daily Current Affairs

India-US Trade Dispute at WTO - Edukemy Current Affairs

Why in News: Recently, India and USA have agreed to end 6 trade disputes at the WTO.

Resolved disputes by India and USA:

  • Initiated by India
    • Renewable energy sector measures.
    • Measures on Steel and Aluminium products.
    • Countervailing measures on some hot–rolled carbon steel flat products from India.
  • Initiated by USA
    • Export-related measures (India’s support to its export sector under different schemes).
    • Some measures related to solar cells and modules.
    • Additional duties on some products from the USA.

Significance of resolution of disputes:

  • It is likely to contribute to the promotion of trade.
  • It will enhance India’s exports to the USA (In 2022-23, the USA was the largest trading partner of India with bilateral trade of $128.8 billion).
  • It will promote a 2+2 dialogue between the two nations.

WTO dispute resolution process:

  1. Bilateral consultations between the parties.
  2. Establishment of a dispute settlement panel if consultations fail.
  3. Adjudication by panels.

Appellate Mechanism:

  • The ruling and reports of the panels can be challenged by WTO’s appellate body.
  • The appellate body is not functioning because the USA has been blocking the appointment of members.
  • As an alternative option, a Multi-Party Interim Appeal Arbitration Arrangement (MPIA) has been formed by the members.
  • MPIA was formed in 2020.
  • Any member can join MPIA by notifying the Dispute Settlement Body. India is not a member yet.



Keywords: General Studies – 2: India – USA relations, General Studies – 3: WTO
Daily Current Affairs

Role of Punjab and Haryana in de-risking the Indian Economy

In News: Experts deliberate on the role of Punjab and Haryana to de-risk Indian economy, especially in an EL Nino year

About Role of Punjab and Haryana in de-risking the Indian Economy

  • Punjab and Haryana, known as the breadbasket states of India, play a crucial role in ensuring food security and de-risking the Indian economy.
  • Assured irrigation access in these states makes them reliable producers of rice and wheat, especially during poor monsoon years.
  • Limited spread of Green Revolution in other states has led to the decline in Punjab and Haryana's combined share in procurement over the last two decades:
    • Share of Punjab and Haryana in total wheat procurement for the Central foodgrain pool has decreased from 90% to around 70%
    • Their share in rice procurement has fallen from 43-44% to 28-29%.
  • Poor monsoons and unfavorable weather conditions in other states have highlighted the significance of Punjab and Haryana's contribution to wheat and rice production.
  • El Niño which is often associated with monsoon failures in India, may impact the ongoing monsoon season, emphasizing the role of these states in mitigating risks.
  • Important factors:
    • Punjab and Haryana farmers have assured access to irrigation, safeguarding their crop production even in the event of a poor monsoon.
    • Paddy cultivation in Punjab benefits from groundwater irrigation, which tends to increase yields during low rainfall years.
  • The states' reliable production of contributes to national food security, especially in times of precarious government stocks and rising global rice prices.
  • Even though policymakers and economists have suggested diversifying crops in Punjab and Haryana, their dependence on rice and wheat proves beneficial in the current scenario.
  • Overall, there is a need to diversify the procurement process to other states such as Madhya Pradesh, Odisha, and Uttar Pradesh in an attempt to reduce the dependency on Punjab and Haryana for de-risking the Indian economy.




Keywords: GS-3: Agriculture
Daily Current Affairs

World Bank: Toolkit to Support Countries After Natural Disasters

In News: World Bank Group Announces Comprehensive Toolkit to Support Countries After Natural Disasters

About World Bank toolkit to support countries after Natural Disasters

  • The World Bank Group has recently introduced a comprehensive toolkit to assist countries in responding to natural disasters and other crises effectively.
  • The toolkit includes a range of measures to support crisis preparedness, response, and recovery.
  • These measures are aimed at alleviating the financial burden on countries and enabling them to prioritize the urgent needs of their people during times of crisis.
  • Important features:
    • Climate Resilient Debt Clauses: Provision of debt relief through Climate Resilient Debt Clauses, allowing vulnerable countries to pause debt repayments during crises or catastrophes.
    • Rapid Response Option: The World Bank Group will also offer countries the flexibility to redirect a portion of their funds for emergency response, ensuring immediate access to cash.
    • Prevention and Preparedness: World Bank Group to link investments in prevention and preparedness with financing for catastrophe and crisis response support.
    • Supporting Private Sector Clients: Taking measures to backstop development projects with private sector support, enabling businesses to sustain operations and protect jobs during crises.
    • Embedding Catastrophe Insurance: Working towards building enhanced catastrophe insurance products that provide resources for disaster-stricken countries without adding to their debt burden.
  • Overall, by implementing the toolkit will help ensure better crisis response, timely assistance, and support to the recovery process to countries after natural disasters and other emergencies.




Keywords: GS-3: International Bodies
Daily Current Affairs

Pollution due to Thermal Power Plant

In News: Despite global calls for emission reduction, coal-based thermal power generation, one of the most polluting sectors of India, was found to be brazenly flouting emission norms.

About the Coal based Thermal Power Plants:

  • The thermal power sector accounts for around 75% of the country's total installed power capacity. As of May 2022, India had a total thermal installed capacity of 1 GW of which 58.6% is obtained from coal and the rest from Lignite, Diesel, and Gas.
  • According to the Central Electricity Authority (CEA), India may need an additional 28GW of coal-fired generation capacity by 2032 apart from 25GW thermal projects already under construction.

Emissions from thermal power plants:

  • Thermal power plants emit a large amount of carbon dioxide, sulphur dioxide, nitrogen oxide, and other pollutants into the air. They also consume a lot of freshwater, causing water scarcity.
  • The MoEFCC made it mandatory in 2015, for thermal power plants to install a flue gas desulphurisation (FGD) system to remove sulphur dioxide from their exhaust.
  • However, by April 2023, only 5% of the country's installed coal-based thermal power plants had FGD mechanisms in place. No plant in the Eastern region was found to be compliant with SO2 emissions norms.
  • Maharashtra has the highest capacity complying with the norms, followed by Gujarat, UP, Haryana and Tamil Nadu
  • Even new projects are not compliant with SO2 emissions norms. Only 81 GW of 32.63 GW newly commissioned capacity is complying with the norms.
  • Furthermore, the reliability of the data could not be ascertained as there is no information available about on-ground inspections by state-level regulatory bodies.
  • Singareni Thermal Power Plant is set to become the1st public sector coal-based power generating station in South and 1st among State PSUs to have a FGD plant.
  • Various factors for delayed the implementation of the norms are:
    • Sector’s dependency on the external market for some FGD components,
    • Novelty of the technology for the Indian market,
    • COVID-19 pandemic.



Keywords: GS-3 Conservation, environmental pollution and degradation
Daily Current Affairs

Significance of plant literacy in understanding climate change

In News: Recent researches by plant physiological ecologists, have highlighted how plants evolved to human-induced stresses like drought and emphasises on the need for ‘Plant Literacy’ to understand plants’ physiological responses.

About Plant Physiological Ecology:

  • Plant physiological ecology is primarily focused on understanding the relationships between the structure and functions of plants and regarding their constructions and shapes.
  • Researchers examine development and growth along with advantages a certain form confers a plant in a given environment.
  • They research the vascular systems of plants a lot which is effectively a plant’s plumbing system in its roots, stems and leaves.
  • Using a comparative anatomy approach the differences in construction of different vascular systems of plants living in disparate regions of the world is understood. It shows plants evolved over millions of years and they will respond to future climatic conditions.
  • It also studies the constraints which the environment places on plants and the novel solutions plants develop to survive and thrive.

Key features of plant architecture:

  • Vascular system is a series of cells arranged similar to pipes, developed over 400 million years to transport water. There is a
    • There is a strong relationship between the amount of water a plant can extract from soil and transport to its leaves and its productivity.
  • Stomata: Microscopic valves called stomata regulate the flow of carbon dioxide into leaves for photosynthesis.
    • Plants lose 400 water molecules for every CO2 molecule they take up.
    • When water is limited, the plant closes its stomata, cutting off CO2 it normally takes up from the atmosphere. Thus, plants have been fine-tuning the cells that control water flow in them over millennia.
  • Adaptations: Plants created a range of adaptations for water stress and evolved gravitational sensing mechanisms to know which way to grow deeper for water and nutrients. They also have light receptors to detect nearby plants, or to grow nearer to the sun.




Keywords: GS-3 Environment
Daily Current Affairs

Ambubachi Mela - Edukemy Current Affairs

Why in news? Ambubachi Mela 2023, a four-day-long festival, held recently at the historic Kamakhya Temple in Guwahati.


  • The mela marks the annual menstruation of the presiding Goddess in the Kamakhya Temple.
  • It is celebrated during the monsoon season that happens to fall during the Assamese month Ahaar, around the middle of June.
  • This mela is also known as Ameti or Tantric fertility festival.

Kamakhya temple:

  • Kamakhya is one of the 51 Shakti Peethas, representing a body part of Sati, Lord Shiva’s companion.
  • It is situated on Nilachal Hill and adjoining the southern bank of the Brahmaputra River in Guwahati,
  • It is one of the most revered centres of Tantric practices.




Keywords: General Studies –1 Art & Culture
Daily Current Affairs

Chiral Bose-liquid state - Edukemy Current Affairs

Why in news? According to recent research, the chiral Bose-liquid state may be an entirely new state of matter.


  • Usually matter is a solid, liquid or gas.
  • But at temperatures approaching absolute zero, or the world within the atom, things are very different.
  • In these “quantum” states, matter behaves in ways quite different from the solid, liquid, and gaseous states.
  • Under frustrated quantum systems, involve the interactions of particles leading to infinite possibilities.
    • In these systems, collisions can produce unexpected outcomes, such as levitating or defying traditional angles.
    • Some scientists have engineered such a frustration machine: a bi-layer semiconducting device.

Formation of Chiral Bose-liquid state:

  • The chiral bose-liquid state is formed by bringing two layers of a special material very close together at very low temperatures (close to absolute Zero).
  • The top layer is electron-rich, and these electrons can move freely.
  • The bottom layer is filled with “holes,” or places that a roving electron can occupy.
  • When these layers are brought together, a local imbalance is created, causing electrons to not have enough holes to fill.
  • This imbalance triggers the formation of the chiral bose-liquid state, which has unique properties and behaviours.
  • This unique state allows electrons to freeze into predictable patterns, exhibit resilience to changes in spin (a characteristic of subatomic particles) and synchronize their movements.




Keywords: General Studies –3 Science & Technology
Daily Current Affairs

Cord blood banking - Edukemy Current Affairs

Why in news? Recently, many actresses have chosen to preserve their baby’s cord blood.


  • Cord blood (short for umbilical cord blood) is the blood that remains in the umbilical cord and placenta post-delivery.
  • Umbilical cord blood is a rich source of stem cells that can potentially develop into different types of cells, and be used, via a transplant, in the treatment of certain blood, immune and metabolic disorders.
    • These are known as hematopoietic stem cell transplantations (HSCT).
  • Cord blood banking is the process of collecting the cord blood and extracting and cryogenically freezing its stem cells and other cells of the immune system for potential future medical use.
  • While over the past decade or so the popularity of cord blood banking has increased among new parents.



Keywords: General Studies –3 Biotechnology
Daily Current Affairs

Drugs harmful to vultures - Edukemy Current Affairs

Why in news? Vulture conservationists and experts have welcomed the central government’s move to ban veterinary drugs aceclofenac and ketoprofen that are fatal for vultures.


  • The decision taken on the ban by the Drugs Technical Advisory Board is the second big step towards vulture conservation since the banning of Diclofenac in 2006.
  • Ban on three drugs —aceclofenac, nimesulide and ketoprofen– had been requested.
  • But nimesulide continues to use and it possess a threat and should be banned soon.
  • Ketoprofen and aceclofenac in cattle are equally toxic as Diclofenac and can kill vultures.


  • Vultures are medium- to large-sized birds of prey.
  • They are known for eating carrion (the bodies of dead animals).
  • India is home to 9 species of Vulture namely the Oriental white-backed, Long-billed, Slender-billed, Himalayan, Red-headed, Egyptian, Bearded, Cinereous and the Eurasian Griffon.
  • Most of these 9 species face dangers of extinction.
  • Bearded, Long-billed, Slender-billed, Oriental white-backed are protected in the Schedule-1 of the Wildlife Protection Act 1972. Rests are protected under ‘Schedule IV’.

Drugs Technical Advisory Board (DTAB)

  • It is a statutory body formed under Drugs and Cosmetics Act, 1940.
  • It is subordinate to Ministry of Health and Family Welfare and gives advice to Union and state Government on technical matters arising out of the administration of this Act.
  • It also advises and takes policy decision on technical matters related to drugs in India.




Keywords: General Studies –3 Environment
Daily Current Affairs

Joha rice - Edukemy Current Affairs

Why in news? Recently, researchers at the Institute of Advanced Studies in Science and Technology explored the nutraceutical properties of Joha rice to investigate its potential benefits.


  • Joha rice is an indigenous rice of Assam and grown in Kharif season.
  • It is unique in aroma and grain characteristics and distinct from other aromatic rice like Basmati.
  • Major Joha varieties included in this are Kola Joha, Keteki Joha, Bokul Joha and Kunkuni Joha.
  • This rice is also rich in several antioxidants, flavonoids, and phenolics.
  • It has got Geographical Indication (GI) tag.

Key findings:

  • The researchers discovered two essential fatty acids, linoleic acid (omega-6) and linolenic acid (omega-3), through laboratory analysis.
    • These fatty acids, which the human body cannot produce, play a role in maintaining various physiological conditions.
  • Omega-3 fatty acid has been found to prevent metabolic diseases such as diabetes, cardiovascular diseases, and cancer. In diabetic rats, Joha rice was effective in reducing blood glucose levels and preventing the onset of diabetes.
  • Additionally, the researchers found that scented Joha rice has a more balanced ratio of omega-6 to omega-3 fatty acids compared to the commonly consumed non-scented variety.
  • Some of the identified bioactive compounds in Joha rice include oryzanol, ferulic acid, tocotrienol, caffeic acid, catechuic acid, gallic acid, and tricin.
    • These compounds have reported antioxidant, hypoglycaemic, and cardio-protective effects.




Keywords: General Studies –3 Health
Daily Current Affairs

Belgium - Edukemy Current Affairs

Why in news? Recently, India and Belgium have signed a Mutual Legal Assistance Treaty allowing Belgian authorities to execute search warrants issued by Indian courts and summon suspects


  • The move is expected to aid investigations into fugitives including Neeshal Modi, brother of the Punjab National Bank (PNB) fraud mastermind, Nirav Modi.


  • Belgium is a country located in Western Europe.
  • It is bordered by the Netherlands to the north, Germany to the east, Luxembourg to the southeast, France to the southwest, and the North Sea to the northwest.
  • Belgium is divided into three regions: Flanders, Wallonia and Brussels.
  • Belgium is a constitutional monarchy with a parliamentary system.
  • Capital city: Brussels




Keywords: General Studies –1 Geography
Daily Editorial Analysis

Outreach to diaspora and statesmanship

Exam View: The Indian diaspora; The phenomenon of the diaspora of the diaspora; Hostile host country policies; Neighbourhood bilateral relations; Neighbourhood bilateral relations; Federal camaraderie.

Context: In protecting the interests of the Indian diaspora, State governments need to work with the central government.

Decoding the editorial: The Indian diaspora

  • Among the Indian diaspora, Tamils constitute a substantial number.
    • They form the overwhelming majority of the Indian population in Malaysia, Singapore, and Sri Lanka, are in good numbers in Myanmar, Mauritius, South Africa, the Seychelles, the Reunion Islands, Fiji, Trinidad and Tobago, Guyana, Suriname, Australia, New Zealand, the Gulf countries, the United States and Canada, Britain and the European countries.
  • In a speech while addressing the Tamil diaspora in Tokyo in the course of his overseas tour in May 2023, to Singapore and Japan, to attract investments to the State, the Tamil Nadu Chief Minister, had said that the Government of Tamil Nadu would protect the Tamil diaspora that has spread far and wide in search of education, business, and employment.

The phenomenon of the diaspora of the diaspora

  • From Fiji, Malaysia, and Singapore, the Indian diaspora is migrating to greener pastures such as Australia, Canada.
  • The hopes that they entertain and the problems that they face are closely related to the nature of their migration, their numerical numbers, their educational and professional attainments, their economic clout, and, above all, the majority-minority syndrome in the host countries.
  • The Tamil diaspora has excelled in politics, economics, literature, the fine arts, sports, and science.
    • A few names that shine include Dr. Chandrasekhar, Monty Naicker, Sambandan, Janaki Thevar, T.S. Maniam, Saumiyamoorthy Thondaman, S.R. Nathan, Muthiah Muralitharan, Nagamattoo, Indira Nooyi, Sundar Pichai, Raghuram Rajan and Kamala Harris. 

Hostile host country policies

  • Ceylon
    • The first legislative enactment of Ceylon, soon after independence, was to render the Indian Tamils, who were taken to Ceylon under the protective umbrella of the British Government, to provide labour in the tea plantations.
    • Nehru’s principled stand was that all those who considered Ceylon to be their home and have stayed there for long should be conferred citizenship.
    • Ceylon argued that it was its sovereign right to introduce citizenship regulations.
  • Burma
    • The Burmese government never granted citizenship to thousands of Indian Tamils and expelled them.
    • On the eve of their departure, the Burmese currency was demonetised.

Neighbourhood bilateral relations

  • It has two dimensions
    • To improve relations with governments, politically, economically, and culturally.
    • To protect and foster the interests of Indian minority groups.
  • An overview of India’s policy towards Sri Lanka
    • It shows that to improve political relations, New Delhi, on some occasions, was willing to sacrifice the interests of the Indian diaspora.
    • The Sirimavo-Shastri Pact of October 1964 is an example of betrayal.
    • New Delhi adopted the policy of give and take and converted the Indian Tamil community into merchandise to be divided between the two countries.
    • It must be highlighted that all important leaders of the Madras Presidency, Rajagopalachari, Kamaraj Nadar, C.N. Annadurai, P. Ramamurti, and Krishna Menon were opposed to the agreement.

Federal camaraderie

  • The policy towards the Indian diaspora comes under the exclusive jurisdiction of the central government.
    • Even then, State governments can influence policies by building public opinion.
  • The Citizenship (Amendment) Act (CAA) has acted as a detriment.
    • It failed to use the term ‘persecuted minorities’.
    • The CAA also does not include Sri Lanka, where ethnic fratricide has compelled many Tamils to come to Tamil Nadu as refugees.
      • New Delhi terms Sri Lankan Tamil refugees as illegal immigrants and argues that they must go back to Sri Lanka.
      • What the refugees want is Indian citizenship.
      • All of them fulfil the residential qualifications laid down in the Indian Citizenship Act.
      • Indian Tamil refugees, who number 29,500, are stateless. They are willing to surrender their Sri Lankan citizenship to get Indian citizenship.

The need of the hour is for the state and central government to come together and arrive at an amicable solution. This calls for statesmanship, not political opportunism.



Keywords: GS Paper-2: Indian Diaspora.
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