Goaltide Daily Current Affairs 2020

Jun 30, 2020

Current Affair 1:
How e-waste crisis continues to plague informal sector?

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Read the news. Our main concern here is E-waste Management Rules, 2016. We will learn that.

Few examples of reports (You need sometimes these reports to start your answer in Mains). See below.

According to the Global E-Waste Monitor 2017, India generates about 2 million tonnes (MT) of e-waste annually and ranks fifth among e-waste producing countries, after the US, China, Japan and Germany. In 2016-17, India treated only 0.036 MT of its e-waste.

About 95 per cent of India’s e-waste is recycled in the informal sector and in a crude manner. A report on e-waste presented by the United Nations (UN) in World Economic Forum on January 24, 2019 points out that the waste stream reached 48.5 MT in 2018 and the figure is expected to double if nothing changes.

Now, we will learn E-waste Management Rules 2016.

The Ministry of Environment, Forest and Climate Change notified the E-Waste Management Rules, 2016 on 23 March 2016 in supersession of the e-waste (Management & Handling) Rules, 2011.

Now we will see the salient features of this Bill:

  1. Manufacturer, dealer, refurbisher and Producer Responsibility Organization (PRO) have been introduced as additional stakeholders in the rules.

  1. It mandated extended producer responsibility (EPR) for all plastic producers, importers and brand owners (PIBOs). ERP is a mechanism through which producers are made responsible for handling and recycling end-of-life products.

  1. Compact Fluorescent Lamp (CFL) and other mercury containing lamp brought under the purview of rules.
  2. Provision for Pan India EPR (Extended Producer Responsibility) Authorization by CPCB has been introduced replacing the state wise EPR authorization.

  1. Deposit Refund Scheme has been introduced as an additional economic instrument wherein the producer charges an additional amount as a deposit at the time of sale of the electrical and electronic equipment and returns it to the consumer along with interest when the end - of - life electrical and electronic equipment is returned.

  1. The manufacturer is also now responsible to collect e - waste generated during the manufacture of any electrical and electronic equipment and channelize it for recycling or disposal and seek authorization from State Pollution Control Board (SPCB)

  1. The roles of the State Government have been also introduced in the Rules in order to ensure safety, health and skill development of the workers involved in the dismantling and recycling operations.
  2. Department of Industry in State or any other government agency authorized in this regard by the State Government is to ensure earmarking or allocation of industrial space or shed for e - waste dismantling and recycling in the existing and upcoming industrial park, estate and industrial clusters.

  1. Department of Labour in the State or any other government agency authorized in this regard by the State Government need to ensure recognition and registration of workers involved in dismantling and recycling.

  1. State Government to prepare integrated plan for effective implementation of these provisions, and to submit annual report to Ministry of Environment, Forest and Climate Change.

  1. Liability for damages caused to the environment or third party due to improper management of e - waste including provision for levying financial penalty for violation of provisions of the Rules has also been introduced.

  1. Urban Local Bodies (Municipal Committee/Council/Corporation) has been assign the duty to collect and channelized the orphan products to authorized dismantler or recycler.

  1. The import of electrical and electronic equipment shall be allowed only to producers having Extended Producer Responsibility authorisation.

Current Affair 2:
Gynandromorphism in dragonfly

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Why in News?

Recently, a rare biological phenomenon i.e. Gynandromorphism has been spotted in a dragonfly, the Scarlet Skimmer (Crocothemis servilia), which is found in the Kole wetlands, Kerala.

Gynandromorphism is a characteristic of an organism that contains both male and female tissues and characteristics. Such organisms are also called gynandromorphs.

Kole Wetlands:

Kole Wetlands is a wetland lying in Thrissur District in Kerala. It gives 40% of Kerala's rice requirement and acts as a natural drainage system. It is a part of Vembanad-Kole wetlands.

One more news related to dragonfly was there in The Hindu section,

Megalogomphus superbus Fraser, endemic to the Western Ghats, has been photographed for the first time in nine decades.

Current Affair 3:
Researchers rediscover extinct plant after 136 years

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Researchers from Pune, Calicut and Kozhikode have rediscovered the plant, Globe Andersonii, from Sikkim Himalaya which has been considered extinct for the last 136 years. The Globe Andersonii is commonly known as Dancing Ladies or Swan Flower.

Current Affair 4:
Virtual Summoning of the Houses of Parliament

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Interesting news. Try to understand.

The Indian Constitution envisages three major roles for Parliament: representation, law-making, and accountability.

Relevant to our discussion is Article 75(3), which states that the ‘Council of Ministers shall be collectively responsible to the House of the People’.

However, legislatures could only hold the executive accountable when the House is summoned by President (on the advices of Cabinet) or when the Parliamentary Committees meet. With the budget session adjourned sine die on March 23, and no alternative mechanism of ensuring continuity of Parliament, it is becoming increasingly difficult for the legislature to hold the executive responsible.

As per the Indian Constitution, the President has time until September 23 (gap of 6 months) to summon the House.

Reasons for the delay in summoning of the Houses:

What other countries are doing?

Globally, different governments have responded with varying degrees of accountability during the pandemic. Keeping up the traditional parliamentary methods of ensuring government accountability, we saw Maldives becomes the world’s first parliament to go virtual after which countries including Canada and United Kingdom decided to take democracy online.

What Speaker and Chairman have to say about holding a session?

On June 9, after the meeting of Lok Sabha Speaker Om Birla and Rajya Sabha Chairman Venkaiah Naidu, it was conveyed that virtual Parliament is ruled out for India, since amendments to rules of the Houses would be required. And here comes the problem…. Read below.

Therefore, considering the unprecedented nature of the situation at hand, in order to strengthen democracy, which is a basic feature of our Constitution, we consider this a strong case for the President (on advice of the Cabinet) to summon Parliament virtually.

Current Affair 5:
Government approves use of dexamethasone

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You don’t need to learn this dexamethasone for Ph.D., Since India has introduced it now for treatment, just have a fair idea what is this.

A drug named dexamethasone is the talk of the hour given recent claims that it can cut mortality in patients with severe forms of COVID-19 by a third. The claims originated in a press release issued by scientists involved with the RECOVERY (short for ‘Randomized Evaluation of COVID-19 Therapy ‘) trial, from the University of Oxford.


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