Antiquities to be returned by US
Context: During his state visit to the US last week, Prime Minister had announced that over 100 stolen antiquities were being returned to India. About the news:
- Some of the 105 antiquities that are set to be returned to India are verified by the Archaeological Survey of India (ASI), which is the custodian of all repatriated artefacts.
- The antiquities, in different mediums such as marble, terracotta and sandstone, span a period of 1,600 years, from the 1st century BC to the 15th century AD.
- The Ministry of Culture is expected to sign a cultural property agreement with the US for smooth repatriation of all such antiquities found to be smuggled out of the country.
- Few of the antiquities to be returned:
- A terracotta Yakshi plaque from 1st century BC which was stolen from eastern India
- A 9th century red sandstone Dancing Ganesha from central India
- A 10th century Kubera from central India
- It is the premier organisation for archaeological research and protection of the cultural heritage of the nation.
- Established in: 1861 by Alexander Cunningham
- Headquarters: New Delhi.
- Nodal Ministry: Ministry of Culture
- Maintenance of ancient monuments and archaeological sites and remains of national importance.
- To regulate all archaeological activities in the country as per the provisions of the Ancient Monuments and Archaeological Sites and Remains Act, 1958.
- It also regulates the Antiquities and Art Treasure Act, 1972.