• Recently, the Centre ordered that the status quo be maintained on the Shanan hydropower project, over which Punjab and Himachal Pradesh have made competing claims.
  • The 110 MW Shanan power project was envisaged by Col. Battye, the then Chief Engineer of the Government of Punjab, in 1922
  • On Lease- It was leased to Punjab in 1925 for 99-years. The first stage (48 MW) of the project was commissioned in 1932.
  • Signed by- The lease agreement was signed in 1925 between the then ruler of Mandi, Raja Joginder Bahadur, and Col BC Batty.
  • Utilisation- According to the agreement, water for the project was to be utilised from Uhl River, a tributary of Beas River, in lieu of which the state would receive 500kW free electricity.
  • Location- It is situated at Jogindernagar in Mandi district, Himachal Pradesh. Lease agreement Termination- On March 2, 2024 after a period of 99-lease years.
  • Legal Control- During the reorganisation of states in 1966, the hydel project was given to Punjab, as Himachal Pradesh was then a Union Territory. It was allocated to the state by a central notification issued on May 1, 1967 by the Union ministry of irrigation and power.
  • Assets Control- Punjab has contended, with all assets currently under formative control of the state government through the Punjab State Power Corporation Ltd (PSPCL). Punjab claimed that the Project has been in possession, control and management of the Project since its inception in 1932.
  • Himachal Pradesh’s Allegation– The Shanan Power House is situated in Himachal’s territory, hence the state should has full rights on this project. The Himachal government has alleged that the project is in a poor condition as Punjab is not repairing or maintaining it.


  • The Election Commission of India (ECI) is an autonomous constitutional authority responsible for administering Union and State election processes in India.
  • It was established in accordance with the Constitution on 25th January 1950 (celebrated as National Voters’ Day). The secretariat of the commission is in New Delhi.
  • The body administers elections to the Lok Sabha, Rajya Sabha, and State Legislative Assemblies in India, and the offices of the President and Vice President in the country.
  • It is not concerned with the elections to panchayats and municipalities in the states. For this, the Constitution of India provides for a separate State Election Commission.

Constitutional Provisions-

  • Part XV (Article 324-329): It deals with elections and establishes a commission for these matters.
  • Article 324: Superintendence, direction and control of elections to be vested in an Election Commission.
  • Article 325: No person to be ineligible for inclusion in, or to claim to be included in a special, electoral roll-on grounds of religion, race, caste or sex.
  • Article 326: Elections to the House of the People and to the Legislative Assemblies of States to be based on adult suffrage.
  • Article 327: Power of Parliament to make provision with respect to elections to Legislatures.
  • Article 328: Power of Legislature of a State to make provision with respect to elections to such Legislature.
  • Article 329: Bar to interference by courts in electoral matters.

Structure of ECI-

  • Originally the commission had only one election commissioner but after the Election Commissioner Amendment Act 1989, it was made a multi-member body.
  • The Election Commission shall consist of the Chief Election Commissioner (CEC) and such number of other election commissioners, if any, as the President may from time-to-time fix.
  • Presently, it consists of the CEC and two Election Commissioners (ECs).
  • At the state level, the election commission is helped by the Chief Electoral Officer.

Appointment & Tenure of Commissioners-

  • The President appoints CEC and Election Commissioners as per the CEC and Other ECs (Appointment, Conditions of Service and Term of Office) Act, 2023.
  • They have a fixed tenure of six years, or up to the age of 65 years, whichever is earlier.
  • The salary and conditions of service of the CEC and ECs will be equivalent to that of the Cabinet Secretary.
  • Under the 1991 Act, it was equivalent to the salary of a Supreme Court Judge.


  • India has recently made a significant advancement in missile technology, joining the select group of nations possessing Multiple Independently Targetable Re-entry Vehicle (MIRV) capabilities.
  • This milestone was achieved through the successful flight test named Mission Divyastra, conducted by the Defence Research and Development Organisation (DRDO). It marked the first time the indigenously developed Agni-5 missile integrated MIRV technology.
  • MIRV technology originated in the United States, with the deployment of a MIRVed Intercontinental Ballistic Missile (ICBM) in 1970.
  • MIRV allows a single missile to carry multiple warheads (3-4), each capable of targeting different locations independently.
  • MIRV technology enhances the missile’s effectiveness by increasing the number of potential targets it can engage.MIRVs can be launched from both land-based platforms and sea-based platforms, such as submarines, expanding their operational flexibility and range.
  • Nations possessing MIRV technology include major nuclear powers such as the United States, the United Kingdom, France, Russia, China, and India, while Pakistan tested the technology (Ababeel Missile) in 2017.
  • The test flight of Agni-5 marked the first time that the MIRV technology was tested in India, which aims to deploy multiple warheads at different locations in a single launch.
  • The Agni-5 weapon system is equipped with indigenous avionics systems and high-accuracy sensor packages, which ensured that the re-entry vehicles reached the target points within the desired accuracy.