Goaltide Daily Current Affairs 2020

Jun 23, 2020

Current Affair 1:
Biomedical Waste Rules, 2016

Source Link

Today, we will learn al important provisions of Biomedical Waste Management Rules 2016. This can be bit boring topic, but this is very important because of new guidelines and handling of COVID Biomedical waste.

Before proceeding, just remember that these Rules are promulgated under Environment Protection Act, 1986. It simply means, under this Act, central government has been empowered to do anything for Bio-Medical Waste Management. So, centre formulates these Rules. For example, see section 6 of EPA Act, 1986.

Now, we will proceed towards Rules.

First of all, you should be very clear that legislation for the first time on Biomedical Waste Management Rules came in 1998, not in 2016, see below. Then we did several changes to it gradually.

After 1998, new rules were promulgated, called the Bio Medical Wastes (Management and Handling) Rules 2011. It is not required to study 2011 Rules in detail. We will just see few differences between both the above- mentioned Rules.

Once again, new rules were formulated after 2011, called Biomedical Waste Management Rules 2016.

  1. The first distinction between the new rules and those prescribed in 2011 is their range of application. While in 2011, the 1998 rules were amended to include all persons who generate, collect, receive, store and transport biomedical waste, the 2016 rules bring more clarity by specifying that vaccination camps, blood donation camps, surgical camps and all other HCFs have been included.
  2. These Rules shall not apply to:


  1. Pre-treatment of the laboratory waste, microbiological waste, blood samples and blood bags through disinfection or sterilization on-site in the manner as prescribed by WHO or NACO.

  1. Establish a Bar-Code System for bags or containers containing bio-medical waste for disposal.

  1. The 2011 draft demarcated eight categories of biomedical waste (down from ten categories in the 1998 notification). The 2016 notification further brings down the number of categories to four. “Reduction in categories does not mean that a particular kind of biomedical waste is not being adhered to. What it means is that all types of wastes have been compiled in four categories for ease of segregation at a healthcare facility
  2. State Government to provide land for setting up common bio-medical waste treatment and disposal facility

  1. Inclusion of emissions limits for Dioxin and furans

  1. No occupier shall establish on-site treatment and disposal facility, if a service of `common bio-medical waste treatment facility is available at a distance of seventy-five kilometer.


  1. Use of chlorinated plastic bags, gloves and blood bags is to be phased out by the HCF within two years to eliminate emission of dioxins and furans from burning of such wastes.         
  1. Another improvement in the new rules is in the monitoring sector. While the 2011 rules have no provision for a monitoring authority, the 2016 rules state that the MoEF will review Health care facilities (HCFs) once a year through state health secretaries, the SPCB and the CPCB. The SPCB, in its turn, will oversee implementation through district level monitoring committees that will report to the State advisory Committee or the SPCB.

Moreover, according to the new rules, the advisory committee on biomedical waste management is now mandated to meet every six months.


So, we are still left with some portion, Bio-Medical Waste Management (Amendment) Rules, 2018. Pib Link.

Salient features of Bio-Medical Waste Management (Amendment) Rules, 2018 are as follows:

  1. Bio-medical waste generators including hospitals, nursing homes, clinics, dispensaries, veterinary institutions, animal houses, pathological laboratories, blood banks, health care facilities, and clinical establishments will have to phase out chlorinated plastic bags (excluding blood bags) and gloves by March 27, 2019.
  2. All healthcare facilities shall make available the annual report on its website within a period of two years from the date of publication of the Bio-Medical Waste Management (Amendment) Rules, 2018.
  3. Operators of common bio-medical waste treatment and disposal facilities shall establish bar coding and global positioning system for handling of bio-medical waste in accordance with guidelines issued by the Central Pollution Control Board by March 27, 2019.

Hope so, we don’t get more amendments and by reading all points above, you can solve any question now. All the best! Now moving to another important topic of the day.

Current Affair 2:
Ancient algae play a role in building a healthy marine ecosystem

Source Link

A study of a microscopic ancient marine algae (Coccolithophores) led by the National Centre for Polar and Ocean Research (NCPOR) has found that there is a decrease in the concentration of oceanic calcium carbonate (CaCO3) in the southern Indian ocean.

This decrease in CaCO3 is attributed to the increase in the concentration of another single-celled algae known as diatoms. This, in turn, will affect the growth and skeleton structure of coccolithophores, with potential significance for the world ocean ecosystem.

Importance of Coccolithophores.

Coccolithophores are single-celled algae living in the upper layers of the world’s oceans. They have been playing a key role in marine ecosystems and the global carbon cycle for millions of years. Coccolithophores calcify marine phytoplankton that produces up to 40 per cent of open ocean calcium carbonate and responsible for 20 per cent of the global net marine primary productivity. 

Coccolithophores build exoskeletons from individual CaCO3 plates consisting of chalk and seashells building the tiny plates on their exterior. Though carbon dioxide is produced during the formation of these plates, coccolithophores help in removing it from the atmosphere and ocean by consuming it during photosynthesis. At equilibrium, coccolithophores absorb more carbon dioxide than they produce, which is beneficial for the ocean ecosystem.

National Centre for Polar and Ocean Research (NCPOR), in Goa.


Current Affair 3:
Invasion of Humans in the Forest Domain, Displacing Forest Species is The Major Factor For COVID-19': Manipur HC

Source Link

In a recent order, the High Court of Manipur directed the state authorities to take relevant steps for protection of environment, especially the forest cover of the state, to avoid the threat of animal borne diseases in the future.

Paragraph noted by the court:

“To believe that human beings are the dominant amongst all living species, fauna and flora, animals, mammals, bacteria, unicellular & multi-cellular organisms, etc. appears to be a misconception. Homo sapiens though a dominant species, cannot claim predominance as one specie is interlinked to the other in their own cycle of life. It has to co-exist within limits thereby maintaining the balance in nature. The indiscriminate population fuelled deforestation and unnecessary animal human contact appears to be the cause of the present pandemic which could have been otherwise avoided."

The court observed that destruction of forests and invasion/intrusion of human beings in the forest domain displacing forest species appears to be a major factor for the series of diseases like the present COVID-19.

Few important topics related to Prelims we will study here:

Compensatory Afforestation Fund Management and Planning Authority (CAMPA)

The court said that the funds collected by the Compensatory Afforestation Fund Management and Planning Authority (CAMPA) should be utilized to improve the forest cover in the state.


In India, Forest land can be diverted for non-forest purposes such as construction of dams, mining and other developmental activities only if the government permits. Since this diversion of forest land results in loss of biodiversity which in turn affects wildlife as well as geographical parameters such as climate and terrain, compensatory afforestation is also mandated in the law. In other words, to compensate for the losses incurred, the government made compensatory afforestation mandatory.

Whenever forest land is diverted for non-forest purposes, it is mandatory under the Forest (Conservation) Act, 1980 that an equivalent area of non-forest land has to be taken up for compensatory afforestation.

An undertaking to pay for Compensatory Afforestation (CA) activities is also mandatory for clearance.

Compensatory Afforestation Fund Act, 2016 came into force from 30 September 2018. The Act established a National Compensatory Afforestation Fund under the Public Account of India and State Compensatory Afforestation Fund under the Public Account of each state. The payments made for compensatory afforestation, net present value and others related to the project will be deposited in the fund. The State Funds will receive 90% of the payments while National Fund will receive remaining 10%.

Current Affair 4:
Keeladi Excavations:

Source Link

This Keeladi is consistent in news. You can see below. In all newspaper, magazines, it is appearing.


So first of all, remember, this place is recently in news as excavation site. So, if any question as appeared in UPSC Prelims 2019, see below, you can attempt that.

Why so much controversy around this site? Just to have basic idea.

The Keeladi site, since its discovery has been shrouded in controversies with several Dravidian and Left ideologues claiming that the archaeological finds prove that the Indus Valley Civilisation was a “Dravidian” culture and an independent “secular” Tamil civilization.

The thing is that we don’t need to turn to history to appreciate the diversity that is a part of the Indian ethos. Unlike many other countries where diversity was rooted out with brutal violence, India continues to be diverse in cultural, linguistic and ethnic terms.

Many different cultures have dotted the landscape of this country from north to south and east to west, and they all have contributed to the current Indian identity. To define a culture in narrow racial terms, which didn’t define itself so, is cheap politicking.

Current Affair 5:
Eurasian Group on Combating Money Laundering and Financing of Terrorism (EAG)

Source Link

The EAG’s founders are six states of the Eurasian region that signed the Declaration at the Founding Conference in Moscow in 2004. One year later, Uzbekistan joined the EAG as a member state, followed by Turkmenistan and India five years later.

Membership in the EAG is open to other countries of the region which:

  1. take active steps to develop and enforce laws in the sphere of Anti-Money Laundering/Combating the Financing of Terrorism (AML/CFT) in compliance with the FATF Recommendations
  2. assume the obligation of participating in the EAG mutual evaluation programs, and
  3. assume the obligation of actively participating in the plenary meetings and other events of the EAG.

Membership in a FATF-style regional body, which the EAG is, is a condition for membership in the FATF.

<< Previous Next >>

Send To My Bookmarks