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Prelims Booster

23rd April – Prelims Booster

PRELIMS BOOSTER

Central Board for Direct Taxes

Even as the COVID-19 pandemic and the lockdown to combat it has brought the economy to a near standstill, the Centre has gone ahead and set its Income Tax authorities a daunting target of collecting ₹13.2 lakh crore for the fiscal year ending in March 2021.

About CBDT –

  • It is a statutory body established as per the Central Board of Revenue Act, 1963.
  • It is India’s official financial action task force unit.
  • It is administered by the Department of Revenue under the Ministry of Finance.
  • It deals with the levying and collection of direct taxes. It also has auditing and investigative powers.
  • The members of the CBDT are drawn from the Indian Revenue Services.

Sepsivac

Sepsivac, a drug developed by Cadilla Pharmaceuticals and the Council for Scientific and Industrial Research, will be tested in 50 patients at the All-India Institute of Medical Sciences in Delhi and Bhopal, and the Post Graduate Institute of Medical Education and Research, Chandigarh.

About Sepsivac –

  • Sepsivac was originally developed for treating sepsis by a class of pathogens called gram negative bacteria, that are known to cause life-threatening infections.
  • Given the similarities in the immune-system response in critically ill COVID-19 patients, it is theorised, the therapy could stimulate a benign response.
  • A large quantity of cytokines, chemicals signalling the presence of an infection, are produced in the early stages of the body’s response against an infection to stimulate the production of antibodies. However, cytokines also cause inflammation of organs and can be counterproductive in protecting the body.
  • Keeping them in check is the goal of so called immuno-modulators, or medicines like Sepsivac.
  • The drug uses the Mycobacterium w (formally known as mycobacterium indicus pranii) as it produces a different immune-system response. Previous randomised trials in sepsis patients showed 11% absolute reduction and 55.5% relative reduction in mortality.

What is Sepsis?

  • Sepsis occurs when chemicals released in the bloodstream to fight an infection trigger inflammation throughout the body. This can cause a cascade of changes that damage multiple organ systems, leading them to fail, sometimes even resulting in death.
  • Symptoms include fever, difficulty breathing, low blood pressure, fast heart rate and mental confusion.
  • Treatment includes antibiotics and intravenous fluids.

Central Administrative Tribunal

In the wake of national lockdown, the government has decided to suspend the functioning of central administrative tribunals in the country until further notice.

What is Central Administrative Tribunal?

  • Article 323-A – The Central Administrative Tribunal had been established under Article 323A of the Constitution for adjudication of disputes and complaints with respect to recruitment and conditions of service of persons appointed to public services and posts in connection with the affairs of the Union or other authorities under the control of the Government.
  • In pursuance of Article 323-A, the Parliament has passed the Administrative Tribunals Act in 1985. The act authorises the Central government to establish one Central Administrative Tribunal and the state administrative tribunals.
  • The CAT is a specialist body consisting of Administrative Members and Judicial Members. It was established in 1985. A Chairman who has been a sitting or retired Judge of a High Court heads the Central Administrative Tribunal.
  • It exercises jurisdiction only in relation to the service matters of the parties covered by the Administrative Tribunals Act, 1985. The Tribunal is guided by the principles of natural justice in deciding cases and is not bound by the procedure, prescribed by the Civil Procedure Code. Under Section 17 of the Administrative Tribunal Act, 1985, the Tribunal has been conferred with the power to exercise the same jurisdiction and authority in respect of contempt of itself as a High Court.
  • The conditions of service of the Chairman and Members are the same as applicable to a Judge of High Court as per the Administrative Tribunals (Amendment) Act, 2006.
  • The orders of Central Administrative Tribunal are challenged by way of Writ Petition under Article 226/227 of the Constitution before respective High Court in whose territorial jurisdiction the Bench of the Tribunal is situated.

Civil Services Day

Prime Minister Narendra Modi has greeted Civil Servants and their families and paid tributes to Sardar Patel on Civil Services Day.

About Civil Services Day –

  • Every year, on April 21, the public services rendered by these civil servants is celebrated in the form of Civil Services Day. 
  • It was on this day in 1947 that the country’s first home minister Sardar Vallabhbhai Patel addressed the probationers of Administrative Services Officers in 1947 at Metcalf House, Delhi.
  • He rightly described the civil servants the ‘steel frame of India’. 
  • The first such function was held in Vigyan Bhawan, New Delhi on 21 April 2006.

Yom Hashoah

While the world commemorates International Holocaust Remembrance Day on January 27, on the anniversary of the liberation of the Nazi concentration camp and extermination camp of Auschwitz-Birkenau, in Israel, the Shoah, the term in Hebrew for the holocaust, is remembered on a different day.

Why a different date?

The date for the Yom HaShoah is set in accordance with the Hebrew calendar and hence, unlike the International Holocaust Remembrance Day, it does not have a fixed date. This year, it is being observed from April 20 to 21.

What is ‘holocaust’?

The holocaust was the genocide of the European Jews between 1941 and 1945. Two-thirds of European population were Jews. Around two-thirds of the European population were Jewish and Nazis under the leadership of Hitler murdered around 6 million.

About International Holocaust Remembrance Day –

  • The International Holocaust Remembrance Day (January 27) marks the ending of World War II. It also marks the establishment of United Nations formed in response to the crimes of Holocaust and Second World War.
  • The day also marks the anniversary of Liberation of Auschwitz. Auschwitz was a complex that operated more than 40 exterminations camps and concentration camps during World War II.

Earth Day

April 22 is Earth Day, an international event celebrated around the world to pledge support for environmental protection. The year 2020 marks the 50th anniversary of the annual celebrations. This year’s theme for Earth Day is ‘climate action’.

About ‘Earth Day’ –

  • Earth Day was first observed in 1970, when 20 million took to the streets to protest against environmental degradation. The event was triggered by the 1969 Santa Barbara oil spill, as well as other issues such as smog and polluted rivers.
  • In 2009, the United Nations designated April 22 as ‘International Mother Earth Day’.
  • The landmark Paris Agreement, which brings almost 200 countries together in setting a common target to reduce global greenhouse emissions, was signed on Earth Day 2016.

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