In Today’s News:
- For the first time since 1565, the Kamakhya festival without devotees.
- Mr. Jaishankar will attend the RIC meeting.
- DRI caught syndicate smuggling exotic macaws from Bangladesh.
1. For the first time since 1565, Kamakhya festival without devotees.
Kamakhya temple festival is celebrated in Assam every year. But this year, the Kamakhya temple premises will be locked due to COVID-19. In almost 500 years, this is the first time that the temple is without devotees, mendicants, and hermits during the Kamakhya festival. Only the priests are conducting the rituals behind the locked gates.
Prelims GS – Art and Culture
- Ambubachi Mela is the festival which is celebrated in Kamakhya temple in Guwahati, Assam.
- This is the festival that is marking the annual menstruation of the presiding goddess.
- Ambubachi Mela is also known as the Tantric fertility festival.
2. Mr. Jaishankar will attend the RIC meeting.
Hon’ble Minister of External Affairs, Mr. Jaishankar will be attending the Russia-India-China trilateral virtual meeting today. Despite the tensions between India and China regarding LAC border issues, India is attending the meet. This shows that the Government is ready to put aside bilateral issues with China at the moment.
Prelims GS – International Relations
For the Prelims content of RIC, refer 19th June 2020.
3. DRI caught syndicate smuggling exotic macaws from Bangladesh.
The Directorate of Revenue Intelligence has busted the smuggling of exotic macaws from Bangladesh and arrested two persons at Kolkatta while they were on their way to Bengaluru. Wildlife Crime Control Bureau and the Customs Department at the Kolkatta Airport carried out the joint operation with the DRI. The DRI said that these types of smuggling are a source of concern for the spread of Zoonotic diseases. West Bengal and Northeast India are vulnerable to cross-border wildlife smuggling because of their proximity to Bangladesh, Myanmar borders, and Thailand.
Prelims GS – Environment / Polity
Directorate of Revenue Intelligence: (DRI)
- The Directorate of Revenue Intelligence is the apex anti-smuggling agency of India.
- It is working under the Central Board of Indirect Taxes & Customs, Ministry of Finance, Government of India.
Functions of DRI:
- Detecting and curbing smuggling of contraband,
- Detecting and curbing drug trafficking and illicit international trade in wildlife and environmentally sensitive items
- Combating commercial frauds related to international trade and evasion of Customs duty.
For more information on the DRI, visit the official website.
Wildlife Crime Control Bureau: (WCCB)
- The Government of India has established the Wildlife Crime Control Bureau as a statutory body.
- It is under the Ministry of Environment, Forests and Climate Change.
- After amending the Wildlife Protection Act 1972, the Government of India established WCCB.
- WCCB is responsible to combat organized wildlife crime.
Click here for Daily current affairs for the UPSC exams on other dates.