International Conference on the TRIPS CBD Linkage
- Government of India, along with the Centre for WTO Studies, Indian Institute of Foreign Trade and the South Centre (an inter-governmental organisation based in Geneva), are organising an International Conference on TRIPS- CBD Linkage in Geneva on 7-8 June 2018.
- India has taken the lead in seeking to revive WTO discussions on issues related to preventing theft of traditional knowledge.
- Brazil and South Africa are some of the other countries that have joined hands with India on this crucial initiative.
- The Convention on Biological Diversity is a multilateral agreement on sustainable development and fair and equitable sharing of benefits arising out of the utilization of genetic resource. It has membership of 196 countries.
- The Doha Ministerial Declaration in 2001 had tasked the TRIPS Council of the WTO to examine the relationship between the TRIPS Agreement and the Convention on Biological Diversity, and the protection of traditional knowledge and folklore.
- While there has been considerable debate and deliberations on the subject no common understanding has yet been reached at the WTO.
- TRIPS CBD Linkage is important for India and other developing countries because it seeks to address bio-piracy.
- It has been a long standing demand that patents should not be granted for existing traditional knowledge and associated genetic resources.
- The Nagoya Protocol to the Convention on Biological Diversityon Access to Genetic Resources and the Fair and Equitable Sharing of Benefits arising from their utilization came into effect in 2014.
- The protocol provides a legal framework for the fair and equitable sharing of benefits arising out of the utilization of genetic resources for research and commercialization purpose.
Next Generation e-Ticketing System
- Railway’s Online Travel Portal –irctc.co.inhas now launched beta version of its new User Interface.
- The new link has more user friendly features for easier navigation.
- By creating Next Generation e-Ticketing (NGeT) system the new online ticket booking system of Railways provides easy and fast way of booking rail tickets by automating the journey planning and purchase of tickets.
Salient features of the New User Interface:
- With the launch of new interface of e-Ticketing Website, user can now enquire / search trains and check availability of seats without login also, thereby saving precious time of the users.
- The new look and feel will have enhanced class-wise, train-wise, destination-wise, departure/arrival time wise and quota-wise filters for facilitating customer while planning their journeys.
- The new look and feel is providing the facility for the user to find out the availability up to the entire Advance Reservation Period i.e. 120 days at present, except few trains.
To ace UPSC current affairs section, read more PIB articles here.