News: June 03, 2020

Sub: Society
Topic: Human Development Health
Weightage:
Category: Prelims & Mains

 

News: 1/5

Health Bodies

India

Central Drugs Standard Control Organisation(CDSCO) 

  • CDSCO is the National Regulatory Authority (NRA) of India, governed by Drugs & Cosmetics Act,1940
  • CDSCO is headed by Drug Controller General of India (DCGI) , and functions under Directorate General of Health Services, Ministry of Health & Family Welfare
  • Under the Drugs and Cosmetics Act, CDSCO is responsible for approval of Drugs, Conduct of Clinical Trials, laying down the standards for Drugs, control over the quality of imported Drugs in the country and coordination of the activities of State Drug Control Organizations
    • Drug approval is done in consultation with CDSCO's Subject Expert Committee (SEC). SEC consists of 8 experts approved by Ministry of Health and Family Welfare
    • Medical deviced regulation is done DCGI; and registration and import is done by CDSCO's Medical Device & Diagnostics Division
    • Clinical trials
      • The first phase, usually conducted on a small group of individuals, tries to find what dosage of the vaccine is safe for use, whether it is effective in building their immunity to the virus and whether there are any side effects.
      • The second phase is conducted on a larger group comprising hundreds of persons fitting the description of those for whom the vaccine is intended using characteristics like age and sex. 
      • The third phase is conducted on thousands of patients.
      • After approval, the firm has to monitor the use of vaccine
  • To regulate imported drugs as authority, the CDSCO works with the Drugs Technical Advisory Board and the Drugs Consultative Committee, while the Central Drugs Laboratory undertakes testing of such drugs.
  • CDSCO along with state regulators is jointly responsible for grant of licenses of certain specialized categories of critical Drugs such as blood and blood products, I. V. Fluids, Vaccine and Sera.
  • CDSCO also regulates notified medical devices as per Medical Devices (Amendment) Rules, 2020. 

Indian Council of Medical Research (ICMR)

  • ICMR is the apex body in India for the formulation, coordination and promotion of biomedical research
  • ICMR is funded by the Government of India through the Department of Health Research, Ministry of Health & Family Welfare.
  • ICMR institutes in focus
    • National Institute of Medical Statistics (NIMS), New Delhi
      • NIMS provides technical expertise on research methodology, programme evaluation, mathematical modelling, data analysis, etc
      • India’s only institute to coordinate and standardize the collection of medical and health statistics in the country
      • Clinical Trials Registry (CTRI) - a free and online public record system for registration of clinical trials being conducted in India

National Pharmaceutical Pricing Authority (NPPA) 

  • NPPA was constituted by a resolution in 1997 as an attached office of the Department of Pharmaceuticals (DoP), Ministry of Chemicals & Fertilizers
  • Has the power to regulate its own procedures for performing functions entrusted to it.
  • NPPA acts as an independent Regulator for pricing of drugs (under the Drugs (Prices Control) Order) and ensures availability and accessibility of medicines at affordable prices.
  • Collect and maintain data on production, exports and imports, market share of individual companies, profitability of companies etc. for bulk drugs and formulations

World

World Health Organization (WHO)

  • WHO is is a specialized agency of the United Nations, established in 1948, with headquarters in Geneva
  • World Health Assembly (WHA) is the decision-making body of WHO.
  • WHA is attended by delegations from all WHO Member States and focuses on a specific health agenda prepared by the 34 member Executive Board. India was elected to chair this board in 2020
  • In Focus
    • WHO acknowledges of emerging evidence of airborne spread of novel corona virus. Currently WHO's guidance on COVID-19 spread is limited to droplet transmission
      • Droplet transmission: It occurs when a person is within 1 metre of the infector, who coughs or sneezes. Such droplets are 5µm-10µm and so fall under gravity
      • Airborne transmission: It refers to transmission through aerosols (small droplets <5µm) which can linger in air for longer periods and so transmit over distances greater than 1 metre.
    • US officially notified WHO of its intention to withdraw membership. It previously halted WHO's funding

[In news]

  • June, 20
    • CDSCO - Drug approvals
    • Glenmark's Favipiravir trial data by CTRI
    • Illegal disinfectant seize
  • July, 20
    • NAPA requested to ensure availability of critical medical equipment
    • WHO on Tuesday said there is evidence emerging of the airborne spread of the coronavirus, after over 230 scientists across the world urged the global body to update its guidance.

Sub: Geography
Topic: Environment Ecosystem Biodiversity
Weightage:
Category: Prelims & Mains

 

News: 2/5

Species in focus

Animal Species 

  • Asiatic lion
    • IUCN status: Endangered
    • Found in Saurashtra region
    • There number have risen to 674
  • Common Leopard / Panthera pardus 
    • IUCN status: Near Threatened
    • Found in India near shivaliks, Egypt
  • Gangetic river dolphin
    • IUCN status: Endangered
    • Listed in Schedule I of India’s Wildlife (Protection), Act, 1972
    • India's national Aquatic Animal
    • It is primarily found in the Ganges and Brahmaputra, in fresh waters. The dolphin uses echolocation as they are effectively blind.
  • Gee's golden langur
    • IUCN status: Endangered
    • Found only in Assam and Bhutan
  • Golden birdwing butterfly
    • IUCN status: Least Concern
    • endemic to himalayan region, China, South Asia
    • Became largest butterfly in India in 2020, breaking 88 year old record
  • Indian Gaur / Indian Bison
    • IUCN status: Vulnerable
    • Native to South and Southeast Asia,
    • Found in evergreen forests or semi-evergreen and moist deciduous forests
  • Indian Pangolin
    • IUCN status: Endangered
    • Of the eight extant species of pangolin, the Indian Pangolin Manis crassicaudata and Chinese Pangolin M. pentadactyla are found in India.
  • Indian rhinoceros /  Greater one-horned rhinos
    • IUCN status: Vulnerable, CITES appendix I
    • Found only in South Asia and South East Asia
      • Of the 2000 rhinos living, 1800 are in two places; Kaziranga National Park in Assam, India and Chitwan National Park, Nepal
    • Indian Rhino Mission 2020: Started in 2005 by Assam government, International Rhino Foundation, World Wide Fund for Nature (WWF), Bodoland Territorial Council to attain the rhino population of at least 3000 in seven protected areas of Assam by the year 2020
  • Pashmina goat / Changthangi
    • Found in Tibet, Burma, Ladakh
    • Reared by nomadic communities called the Changpa in the Changthang region of Greater Ladakh
  • Tibetan antelope / Chiru Goat
    • IUCN status: Near Threatened 
    • They are hunted for their fur - shahtoosh

Plant Species

  • Globbaandersonii / "Dancing ladies"
    • IUCN status: Critically endangered
    • Usually grows in a dense colony as a lithophyte (plant growing on a bare rock or stone) on rocky slopes in the outskirts of evergreen forests

[In News: Latest]

  • July, 20
    • A Himalayan butterfly named golden birdwing is now India’s largest butterfly
    • Assam floods
  • Aug, 20
    • Gang smuggling pangolin scales arrested
    • Leopard poaching by a study by TRAFFIC is highest in Uttarakhand, Maharashtra

Sub: International Relations
Topic: International institutions, Agencies and Fora
Weightage:
Category: Prelims & Mains

 

News: 3/5

Group Summits

Group of 7 (G7) summit

  • Intergovernmental economic organization consisting of the seven major countries: Canada, France, Germany, Italy, Japan, United Kingdom and United States
  • In addition, the presidents of the European Council and the European Commission represent the European Union. They hold all the privileges and obligations of membership but without the right to host or chair a summit
  • It was formed in the backdrop of 70's oil shock.
  • It is held annually attended by heads of government from these countries
  • Russia joined in 1998, making it G-8 but was left out after annexation of Crimea

Group of 20 (G20) summit

  • G20 was created in response to both to the financial crises of 1990s and to a growing recognition that some of these countries were not adequately represented in global economic discussion and governance.
  • In December 1999, the Finance Ministers and Central Bank Governors of advanced and emerging countries of systemic importance met for the first time in Berlin. Since then they have been meeting annually.
  • G20 was raised to the Summit level in 2008 to address the global financial and economic crisis of 2008
  • The G-20 operates without a permanent secretariat or staff. The chair rotates annually among the members and is selected from a different regional grouping of countries.
  • G20 Leaders Summits - First held in 2008, its been held annually since 2011
  • The finance ministers and central bank governors of the G-20 countries meet twice a year 
  • Established in 1999 after a series of major international debt crises, the G20 aims to unite world leaders around shared economic, political and health challenges.
  • G20 members account for 85 per cent of the world economy, 75 per cent of global trade, and two-thirds of the world's population
  • The G20 operates without a permanent secretariat or staff. The group's chair rotates annually among the members and is selected from a different regional grouping of countries

Russia, India and China (RIC) grouping

  • RIC is a strategic grouping that first took shape in the late 1990s by Russia, for multi-sectoral corporation.
  • In 2003 a decision was made to bring political approach for boundary disputes. An agreement in 2005, identifying political parameters applicable in an eventual border settlement, implicitly recognised India’s interests in Arunachal Pradesh.
  • RIC 2020 was chaired by Russia, and discussed on global pandemic, security and corporation

[In News]

  • June, 20
    • U.S. President Donald Trump on Tuesday invited Prime Minister Narendra Modi to the next G-7 summit to be hosted by the U.S. India is studying the gesture and will examine if the invite is aimed at making India a permanent part of the global high table at the G-7 or its redesigned shape as G-11.

Sub: Science And Technology
Topic: Research and Technology Information Technology
Weightage:
Category: Prelims & Mains

 

News: 4/5

IT Acts And Bodies

Acts

Information Technology Act, 2000

  • Provisions
    • Allows authentication by electronic signature, giving them legal recognition
    • Provides recognition to foreign Certifying Authorities
    • Dispute resolution by Appellate Tribunal set up under TRAI Act and Finance Act. Appeals can be made in High Court.
  • Controller of Certifying Authorities (CCA)
    • Under Ministry of Electronics and Information Technology (MeitY)
    • Give license and regulate the working of Certifying Authorities (CAs). The Certifying Authorities (CAs) issue digital signature certificates for electronic authentication of users.
  • Sections
    • 66A : Punishment for sending offensive messages
      • Shreya Singhal v. Union of India, 2015 - Supreme court made Section 66A unconstitutional on grounds of violating the freedom of speech guaranteed under Article 19(1)(a)
    • 66F : Punishment for cyber terrorism.
    • 67 : Punishment for publishing or transmitting obscene material
    • 69 : Power to issue directions for interception or monitoring or decryption of any information
    • 69A : Power to issue directions for blocking for public access of any information
  • Rules
    • Information Technology (Procedure and Safeguards for Blocking of Access of Information by Public) Rules, 2009
      • Gets exercising powers under Section 69A of Information Technology Act, 2000
      • Central Government shall designate an officer not below the rank of Joint Secretary  for the the purpose of issuing direction for blocking access.
      • Every organisation shall designate a Nodal officer and intimate Department of Information Technology under Ministry of Communications and Information Technology.

National Data Sharing and Accessibility Policy (NDSAP), 2012

  • To facilitate the access to Government of India owned shareable data and information
  • NDAP applies to all data and information created and archived using public funds provided by Government of India directly or through authorized agencies
  • A state-of-the-art data warehouse and data archive with online analytical processing (OLAP) capabilities, which includes providing, a multi-dimensional and subject oriented view of the database needs to be created.
  • Department of Science & Technology to be the nodal agency, and NIC to create data.gov.in under Open Government Data (OGD) Platform
    • Open Government Data (OGD) : A platform for supporting Open Data initiative of Government of India. It facilitates Government Organizations to publish their datasets in open formats for free public use. OGD is also available as Software as a Service (SaaS).

Personal Data Protection Bill, 2019

  • The Bill seeks to provide for protection of personal data of individuals, and establishes a Data Protection Authority for the same. 
  • Obligations of data fiduciary: A data fiduciary is an entity or individual who decides the means and purpose of processing personal data.
  • The Bill allows processing of data by fiduciaries only if consent is provided by the individual. However, in certain circumstances, personal data can be processed without consent.  These include: (i) if required by the State for providing benefits to the individual, (ii) legal proceedings, (iii) to respond to a medical emergency.
  • The Bill amends the Information Technology Act, 2000 to delete the provisions related to compensation payable by companies for failure to protect personal data

Bodies

National Payments Corporation of India (NPCI)

  • Umbrella organisation for operating retail payments and settlement systems in India, is an initiative of Reserve Bank of India (RBI) and Indian Banks’ Association (IBA) under the provisions of the Payment and Settlement Systems Act, 2007
  • NPCI is a 'Not for Profit' Company registered under the provisions of Section 8 of Companies Act 2013
  • RuPay : an Indigenously developed Payment System 
  • Unified Payments Interface (UPI) :  One-stop bill payment solution for all recurring payments
  • National Automated Clearing House (NACH) : For Banks, Financial Institutions, Corporates and Government a web based solution to facilitate interbank, high volume, electronic transactions which are repetitive and periodic in nature.
  • National Electronic Toll Collection (NETC) : Toll collection through FASTag. FASTag are Radio-Frequency Identification (RFID) stickers which are affixed on the vehicle windshield

Computer Emergency Response Team (CERT-In)

  • CERT-In is a functional organisation of Ministry of Electronics and Information Technology with the objective of securing Indian cyber space
  • Provides a single point of contact for reporting local problems
  • Provides a 24 x 7 security service. 

Miscellaneous

  • Indian Cyber Crime Coordination Centre (I4C):
    • Set up in 2018 deal with all types of cybercrimes in a comprehensive and coordinated manner.
    • Functions under Ministry of Home Affairs, and to act as a nodal point in the fight against cybercrime
    • National Cyber Crime Reporting Portal: cybercrime.gov.in ,is a citizen-centric initiative that enables citizens to report cybercrimes online through the portal
  • Cyber Prevention, Awareness & Detection Centre (CyPAD) -  CyPAD is the nodal Cyber Crime Unit of Delhi Police.

Global

Group of Governmental Experts (GGE)

The issue of ICT security has been on the UN agenda since 1998, when Russia introduced a draft resolution on the subjec.

  • UN GGE process has been the primary avenue for inter-state dialogue about the international legal regulation of cyberspace
  • The first Group of Governmental Experts (GGE) was established in 2004 but it did not agree on a substantive report
  • Till now there have been 6 GGE meetings with two year terms; India being member in 5 of them.
  • GGE has limited membership based on equitable geographical distribution. Current GGE with 25 members was set in 2019, and will give its report in 2021

Open-ended Working Group (OEWG) for security in ICT

  • Set up in 2019, similar to Group of Governmental Experts (GGE) with membership open to all. The group will report back to Assembly in 2020

[In News]

  • June, 20
    • NPCI denies breach in BHIM app leak
  • July, 20
    • MeitY bans 59 Chinese apps, under Information Technology (Procedure and Safeguards for Blocking of Access of Information by Public) Rules exercising authority under Section 69A of IT Act, to safeguard the "sovereignty and integrity of India"
    • CERT-In received concerns from citizens about privacy in these apps.
    • Environmental website www.fridaysforfuture.in protesting EIA 2020 notification was blocked by Union Environment Ministry under section 66 of IT Act
    • Growing cyber attack in pandemic and call for order
  • Aug, 20
    • CyPAD asked to submit report by high court on plea from a student about misuse of her photographs on social media

Sub: Politics
Topic: Governance Policies and Welfare schemes
Weightage:
Category: Prelims & Mains

 

News: 5/5

Scheduled Caste

Scheduled Caste and Scheduled Tribe (Prevention of Atrocities) Act, 1989

  • Offence punishable from six months to five years
  • State government can confer on any officer of the State, the powers exercisable by a police officer, for prevention of any offence under the Act; and all officers of Police are to assist him.
  • Removal of person from 'Scheduled Areas' or 'tribal areas' as referred in Article 244, if a Special court is satisfied he is likely to commit an offence.
  • For every Special Court, the State Government shall specify a Special Public Prosecutor or appoint an advocate who has been in practice as an advocate for not less than seven years, for the purpose of conducting cases in that Court.
  • Central government may make rules for carrying out the purposes of Act

[In News]

  • June, 20
    • Tribals demand forester arrest under Scheduled Caste and Scheduled Tribe (Prevention of Atrocities) Act for burning down hut in M.P.

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