Daily Current Affairs for UPSC Civil Services Exam – 18 May 2021

In Today’s News:

  1. Formation of new districts procedure.
  2. WPI Inflation.
  3. DRDO’s 2-DG drug launched.
  4. TRIPS agreement.

1. Formation of new districts procedure

News Summary

There is a political issue on the creation of a new district Malerkotla in Punjab.

Prelims GS – Governance

Formation of new districts:
  • The power to create or abolish or alter the districts lies with the State Governments.
  • State governments can either pass a law in the State Legislative Assembly or pass an executive order by notification in the official gazette for this purpose.
  • The Central Government has no role in the creation of new districts or the alteration of any district of a state.
  • When a State wants to change the name of a district or railway station, a request is sent to the Union Home Ministry and other departments for the issuance of No Objection Certificates.
Benefits of Smaller districts:
  • Smaller districts help in administrative efficiency and expediency.
  • Smaller districts also lead to better administration and governance.

2. WPI Inflation

News Summary

Wholesale Price Index inflation increased to a record high of 10.5% in April.

Prelims GS – Economic Development

  • Wholesale Price Index(WPI) is released by the Office of the Economic Adviser, Department for Promotion of Industry and Internal Trade, Ministry of Commerce and Industry.
  • WPI captures the average movement of wholesale prices of goods and is primarily used as a GDP deflator.
  • WPI(2011-12) reckons only basic prices and does not include taxes, rebate/trade discounts, transport, and other charges.
  • WPI index basket covers three major groups: Primary articles, Fuel & Power, and Manufactured Products.

Click here to view the WPI inflation document.

3. DRDO’s 2-DG drug launched

News Summary

Minister of Defence, Shri Rajnath Singh and Minister of Health and Family Welfare, Dr. Harsh Vardhan jointly launched the new COVID drug 2-DG at DRDO Bhawan.

Prelims GS – Governance(Health)/Science & Technology

2-DG drug:
  • The anti-COVID-19 therapeutic application of the drug 2-deoxy-D-glucose (2-DG) has been developed by the Institute of Nuclear Medicine and Allied Sciences (INMAS), a lab of Defence Research and Development Organisation (DRDO), along with Dr. Reddy’s Laboratories (DRL), Hyderabad.
  • This drug will reduce the average recovery time by 2.5 days and oxygen demand by 40%.
  • In the COVID infected cells, it inhibits virus synthesis and energy production for the process.
  • This is the first indigenous medicine for COVID-19.

Click here to view the official PIB release.

4. TRIPS agreement

News Summary

India and South Africa have asked for the waiver of the TRIPS agreement on the COVID-19 vaccines, drugs, therapeutics, and related technologies when the pandemic hit the world. Intellectual Property Rights(IPRs) such as patents not to become barriers in scaling up the production of medical products is the reason for the requirement of TRIPS waiver.

Prelims GS – International Relations

  • The TRIPS Agreement, which came into effect on 1 January 1995, is the most comprehensive multilateral agreement on intellectual property.
  • Trade-Related Aspects of Intellectual Property Rights is the full form of TRIPS.
  • The TRIPS Agreement introduced global minimum standards for protecting and enforcing nearly all forms of intellectual property rights (IPR), including those for patents.
  • The areas of intellectual property that it covers are copyright and related rights (i.e. the rights of performers, producers of sound recordings, and broadcasting organizations); trademarks including service marks; geographical indications including appellations of origin; industrial designs; patents including the protection of new varieties of plants; the layout-designs of integrated circuits; and undisclosed information including trade secrets and test data.
  • The TRIPS Agreement is a minimum standards agreement, which allows Members to provide more extensive protection of intellectual property if they so wish.
  • Three main features of TRIPS:
    • Standards,
    • Enforcement and
    • Dispute Settlement.
  • TRIPS agreement is under the purview of WTO. (World Trade Organization).

Click here to know more about TRIPS on the official website.



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