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The Hindu Newspaper 29th February 2020

QUESTIONS OF THE DAY:-

1)‘A future for the world’s children?’ report is published by

1)World Health Organization
2)UNICEF
3)The Lancet

Select the correct code:

a) 1 and 2
b) 2 and 3
c) 1 and 3
d) All of the above

2)Consider the following statements with respect to ‘Central Consumer Protection Authority (CCPA)’

1)The district collectors have been empowered to conduct investigations that affect interests of consumer under the aegis of CCPA.
2)It is to be set up under Consumer Protection Act (CPA) 2019.

Select the correct statements

a) 1 Only
b) 2 Only
c) Both
d) None

3)Recently ‘Lithium’ Reserves in India have been found in

a) Karnataka
b) Odisha
c) Assam
d) Rajasthan

1)Coronavirus infects global markets, investors dump equities:- Global markets went into a tailspin on Friday as investors stampeded out of stocks and commodities and flocked to the relative safety of government bonds, prompted by fears of a global recession due to the spread of the coronavirus.

Markets were spooked by the uncertain impact of the virus on global economic health.

BOMBAY STOCK EXCHANGE :- The Bombay Stock Exchange(BSE) is an Indian stock exchange located at Dalal Street, Mumbai.
Established in 1875, the BSE (formerly known as Bombay Stock Exchange Ltd.) Is Asia’s first stock exchange. The BSE is the world’s 10th largest stock exchange .

The BSE SENSEX (also known as the S&P Bombay Stock Exchange Sensitive Index or simply the SENSEX) is a free-float market-weighted stock market index of 30 well-established and financially sound companies listed on Bombay Stock Exchange.

The base value of the SENSEX was taken as 100on 1 April 1979 and its base year as 1978–79. On 25 July 2001 BSE launched DOLLEX-30, a dollar-linked version of the SENSEX.

LIBOR:- The London Inter-bank Offered Rate is an interest-rate average calculated from estimates submitted by the leading banks in London. Each bank estimates what it would be charged were it to borrow from other banks. The resulting rate is usually abbreviated to Libor or LIBOR, or more officially to ICE LIBOR.

2)NIA makes first arrest in Pulwama Case:-
About NIA :- It is the central agency established by the Government of India to combat terror in India.
Agency came into existence with the enactment of the NIA Act 2008.
NIA was created after the 2008 Mumbai terror attacks.Y C Modi is chairman of NIA.
NIA works under Ministry of Home Affairs.

3)What is Auroville?

Auroville (City of Dawn) is an experimental township in Viluppuram district mostly in the state of Tamil Nadu, India with some parts in the Union Territory of Puducherry.

It was founded in 1968 by Mirra Alfassa (known as “the Mother”) and designed by architect Roger Anger.

Auroville was meant to be a universal town where men and women of all countries are able to live in peace and progressive harmony, above all creeds, all politics and all nationalities. The purpose of Auroville is to realize human unity.

Auroville is recognized as International living experiment in human unity, endorsed by the UNESCO and supported by the Government of India.

It is also a centre for applied research in environmentally sustainable living practices, experimenting new system of education, social research and cultural activities.

4)News: Summer to be hotter than usual, says IMD – The summer months from March to May are poised to be hotter than normal, a forecast by the India Meteorological Department (IMD) said on Friday. The forecast indicates that the MAM (March-May) season averaged temperatures are likely to be at least half a degree hotter than normal over northwest, west and central India and some parts
of south India.

About IMD : The India Meteorological Department (IMD) is an agency of the Ministry of Earth Sciences of the Government of India. It is the principal agency responsible for meteorological observations, weather forecasting and seismology. IMD is headquartered in Delhi.
IMD is also one of the six Regional Specialised Meteorological Centres of the World Meteorological Organization. It has the responsibility for forecasting, naming and distribution of warnings for tropical cyclones in the Northern Indian Ocean region, including the Malacca Straits, the Bay of Bengal, the Arabian Sea and the Persian Gulf.

Formation Year :- 1875.

5)News:- Delhi water fails to clear ISO norms :- None of the drinking water samples randomly collected from across Delhi conforms to the ISO standards of purity in one or more requirements, the Bureau of Indian Standards (BIS) informed the Supreme Court on Friday.

About BIS : The Bureau of Indian Standards (BIS) is the national Standards Body of India working under the aegis of Ministry of Consumer Affairs, Food & Public Distribution, Government of India. It is established by the Bureau of Indian Standards Act, 1986 which came into effect on 23 December 1986.

The Minister in charge of the Ministry or Department having administrative control of the BIS is the ex-officio President of the BIS.

The organisation was formerly the Indian Standards Institution (ISI), set up under the Resolution of the Department of Industries and Supplies No. 1 Std.(4)/45, dated 3 September 1946. The ISI was registered under the Societies Registration Act, 1860.

A new Bureau of Indian standards (BIS) Act 2016 which was notified on 22 March 2016, has been brought into force with effect from 12 October 2017. The Act establishes the Bureau of Indian Standards (BIS) as the National Standards Body of India.

6)News:- ‘Alternative medicine systems must undergo rigorous testing’ – Alternative medical systems such as homeopathy could be tested for potential cures, provided they conform to protocols of clinical trials, Gagandeep Kang, director, Translational Health Science and Technology Institute, said on Friday at a function organised by the Department of Science and Technology on National Science Day(28th February).

Ms. Kang is the first Indian woman to be elected as a fellow of the Royal Society of London.

7)EDITORIAL : LEAD : State lethargy amidst cough syrup poisoning

What is the Centre Theme of the Editorial : A national recall of ColdbestPC, the medicine behind the death of 12 children in Jammu, is needed.

A few days ago, we learnt that 12 children died in Udhampur district of Jammu due to poisoned cough syrup (ColdbestPC). More are fighting for their life. This is the fourth mass glycol poisoning event in India that has been caused due to a pharmaceutical drug. Earlier to this were in 1973, 1986 and 1998. In all three cases, the manufacturer of the suspect cough syrup, due to negligence or human error, failed to detect and contain the level of diethylene glycol in the syrup, thereby causing poisoning of the patients who consumed it.

The immediate concern for doctors, pharmacists and the drug regulators should be to prevent any more deaths.

How can it be Done :- The only way to do so is to account for each and every bottle of the poisoned syrup that has ever been sold in the Indian market and stop patients from consuming this drug any further. Any patient who has consumed even a spoon of the syrup should then immediately be referred to a hospital for treatment.

Case Study : According to the information available on the website of the United States Food and Drug Administration (USFDA), in 1937, when the United States faced a similar situation with glycol poisoning, its entire field force of 239 inspectors and chemists were assigned to the task of tracking down every single bottle of the drug.

Way Forward: One of the key reasons why the DCGI and state drug authorities have been so sloppy is because unlike other countries, India has not notified any binding guidelines or rules on recalling dangerous drugs from the market. The 59th report of the Parliamentary Standing Committee on Health as well as the World Health Organization (in its national regulatory assessment) had warned the DCGI on the lack of a national recall framework in India. A set of recall guidelines was drafted in 2012 but never notified into law. In 2016, in a report submitted by me to the Ministry of Health suggesting measures to reform the drug regulatory framework,
It has been pointed out to the Ministry that a national drug recall framework was in urgent need.

8)EDITORIAL 2 : Regional bonding

What is the Central theme of the editorial : India needs to engage with its neighbours forthe realisation of its global ambitions.

At a time when India has more or less shut down all conversations on the South Asian Association for Regional Cooperation (SAARC) and walked away from the ASEAN-led Regional Comprehensive Economic Partnership (RCEP), former Sri Lankan Prime Minister Ranil Wickremesinghe’s push for regional economic integration and for IndiaPakistan dialogue should be studied carefully by New Delhi.

When it comes to the intraregional share of total trade, SAARC and BIMSTEC languish behind groupings such as ASEAN, EU and MERCOSUR.

The Sri Lankan leader also suggested that with India’s leadership, a more integrated South Asian region would be better equipped to negotiate for better terms with RCEP so as not to be cut out of the “productivity network” in Asia, and envisioned an Economic Integration Road Map to speed up the process.

Issues:- First, The government has made it clear that talks with Pakistan are strictly off the table, and that a SAARC summit, which has not been held since 2014, is unlikely to be convened anytime soon.

Second, the government, which has taken a protectionist turn on multilateral trade pacts, is relying more on direct bilateral deals with countries rather than overarching ones that might expose Indian markets to flooding by Chinese goods.

Way Forward:- For any regional sub-grouping in South Asia to flourish , it is India that will have to make the most concessions given the vast trade deficit India’s neighbours have at present, which it may not wish to do. However, the overall projection that India’s global reach will be severely constrained unless it is integrated with its neighbours, and tensions with Pakistan are resolved, cannot be refuted. India needs to be more accommodative for the realisation of its ambitions.

9)NEWS:President gives nod for delimitation in NE States:- The delimitation exercise to readjust the division of each State and Union territory into territorial constituencies for the purpose of elections to the Lok Sabha and to the State Legislative Assemblies on the basis of 2001 census figures was completed by November 26, 2008.

However, this exercise under aegis of the Delimitation Commission, was postponed in Assam, Arunachal Pradesh, Manipur and Nagaland on apprehension of threat to the peace and public order.

Delimitation in India:-Articles 82 and 170 of the Constitution of India provides for readjustment (Delimitation) and the division of each State into territorial constituencies on the basis of the 2001 census by such authority and in such manner as Parliament may, by law, determine.

Accordingly, the Parliament has enacted the Delimitation Commission Acts in 1952, 1962, 1972 and 2002 for this purpose.
Further, Articles 330 and 332 of the Constitution of India provides for refixing the number of seats reserved for the Scheduled Castes and Scheduled Tribes in the House of the People and Legislative Assemblies of the States on the basis of the 2001 census.

10)SEVEN STEPS TO POLICE REFORM:– Most important Case : Prakash Singh and Ors v. Union of India and Ors

The seven directives provide practical mechanisms to kick-start reform.

Directive One
Constitute a State Security Commission (SSC) to:
(i) Ensure that the state government does not exercise unwarranted influence or pressure on
the police
(ii) Lay down broad policy guideline and
(iii) Evaluate the performance of the state police

Directive Two
Ensure that the DGP is appointed through merit based transparent process and secure a
minimum tenure of two years

Directive Three
Ensure that other police officers on operational duties (including Superintendents of Police in-charge of a district and Station House Officers in-charge of a police station) are also provided a minimum tenure of two years

Directive Four
Separate the investigation and law and order functions of the police

Directive Five
Set up a Police Establishment Board (PEB) to decide transfers, postings, promotions and other service related matters of police officers of and below the rank of Deputy Superintendent of Police and make recommendations on postings and transfers above the rank of Deputy Superintendent of Police

Directive Six
Set up a Police Complaints Authority (PCA) at state level to inquire into public complaints against police officers of and above the rank of Deputy Superintendent of Police in cases of serious misconduct, including custodial death, grievous hurt, or rape in police custody and at district levels to inquire into public complaints against the police personnel below the rank of Deputy Superintendent of Police in cases of serious misconduct

Directive Seven
Set up a National Security Commission (NSC) at the union level to prepare a panel for selection and placement of Chiefs of the Central Police Organisations (CPO) with a minimum tenure of two years.

11)WHO raises global risk of virus to ‘very high’ :- The rapid spread of the COVID19 outbreak increased fears of a pandemic on Friday, with six countries reporting their first cases and the World Health Organization (WHO) raising its global spread and impact risk alert to “very high”.

 

 

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