Daily News Analysis 9 May 2023

Table of Contents



  • Why does India not have a law to recall bad drugs from the market?

Facts for Prelims

  • Shanghai Organisation Corporation (SCO)
  • River-Cities Alliance
  • Tungnath Temple


Why does India not have a law to recall bad drugs from the market?



A pharmaceutical company named Abbott published a notice in newspapers about a mislabelled batch of medicine that was shipped to the market. Unlike the US, Indian pharmaceutical companies do not recall substandard or mislabelled drugs.

Reasons why there is no mandatory recall law in India:

Mulling the law

  • The US law requires pharmaceutical companies to recall drugs that have failed to meet quality parameters.
  • India has been discussing creating a mandatory recall law since 1976, but none exists today.

Limited power

  • In 2012, the Central Drug Standard Control Organisation (CDSCO) proposed draft recall guidelines, but only the Ministry of Health can make binding rules.
  • The Drug Regulation Section of the Ministry lacks expertise and interest in protecting public health.

Fragmented regulatory structure

  • Each state has its own drug regulator, but drugs can cross borders to be sold in all states.
  • Centralising the responsibility for recalling drugs requires one authority to hold companies liable for failures.

Consequences of the delay in creating a mandatory recall law:

  • Dozens of drugs fail random-testing in government laboratories every month.
  • People suffer from adverse health events due to substandard drugs not being removed from the market.
  • The bureaucracy may prefer to keep quiet to avoid accountability.


India needs a mandatory recall law to protect the public from substandard drugs. The delay in creating this law is due to a lack of expertise, interest, and centralisation of regulatory powers. The consequences of this delay are dire and demand immediate attention


Shanghai Organisation Corporation (SCO)


Recently, SCO added Kuwait, UAE, Myanmar and Maldives as dialogue partners.

About the Shanghai Organisation Corporation (SCO):

  • The SCO is an international organization.
  • It was created in 2001.
  • The organization aims to promote peace, security, and stability in the Eurasian region.
  • Its official languages are Russian and Chinese.

History of the SCO:

  • Before the SCO was created, China and four former Soviet republics formed the Shanghai Five in 1996.
  • The Shanghai Five aimed to ensure stability along their borders through talks and agreements.
  • In 2001, Uzbekistan joined the Shanghai Five, and the organization was renamed the SCO.
  • India and Pakistan became members in 2017, and Iran is set to become a full member in 2021.

Objectives of the SCO:

  • The SCO aims to promote political, economic, and military cooperation among its members.
  • The organization also focuses on combating terrorism, separatism, and extremism.
  • It encourages trade and investment among member countries.
  • The SCO promotes cultural and humanitarian exchanges.

Structure of the SCO:

  • The Heads of State Council is the highest decision-making body in the SCO.
  • The Heads of Government Council focuses on the organization\’s economic engagement.
  • The Council of Foreign Ministers deals with day-to-day operations.
  • The Regional Anti-Terrorist Structure (RATS) is a specialized organization focused on counter-terrorism efforts.

Significance of India\’s membership in the SCO:

  • India\’s membership in the SCO allows for greater cooperation in regional security and economic engagement.
  • The SCO provides India with a platform to strengthen ties with other member countries.
  • India can benefit from the organization\’s focus on counter-terrorism efforts.
  • India\’s membership in the SCO is a significant step towards strengthening its presence in the Eurasian region.


River-Cities Alliance


Recently, National Mission For Clean Ganga Organizes River-Cities Alliance Global Seminar.

About the River-Cities Alliance:

  • The River-Cities Alliance (RCA) was launched in 2021.
  • It is a joint initiative of the Ministry of Jal Shakti and the Ministry of Housing and Urban Affairs.
  • The RCA aims to connect river cities across India for sustainable river-centric development.
  • It provides a platform for member cities and international stakeholders to exchange information on urban river management.

Membership and Participation:

  • The Alliance began with 30 member cities and has expanded to 109 river cities across India.
  • One international member city, Aarhus from Denmark, has also joined the RCA.
  • The RCA Global Seminar saw participation from funding agencies like the World Bank, ADB, JICA, and KfW.
  • Embassies and High Commissions of select countries also participated in the seminar.

Objective and Vision:

  • The RCA aims to share good practices for managing urban rivers among member cities.
  • It focuses on sustainable river-centric development.
  • The Alliance is a dedicated platform for river cities in both Ganga basin and non-Ganga basin states.
  • The RCA resonated in the UN Water Conference 2023 held in New York in March 2023.

DHARA 2023:

  • The first annual meeting of the RCA, DHARA 2023, was held in Pune in 2023.
  • The event featured key sessions on international best practices for urban river management.
  • DHARA 2023 aimed to inspire RCA members to take progressive actions for urban river management in their cities.
  • The event helped in developing a compendium of technological solutions that cities may adopt for enhancing the management of their local rivers.

Significance of RCA:

  • The RCA provides a platform for river cities across India to discuss and exchange information for sustainable management of urban rivers.
  • The Alliance helps member cities to learn from each other and from international best practices for river management.
  • RCA\’s efforts towards sustainable river-centric development contribute to the overall ecological health of the country.
  • The compendium of technological solutions developed by the RCA can help member cities to enhance the management of their local rivers.


Tungnath Temple



The central government recently issued a notification declaring the ancient temple of Tungnath as a monument of national importance.

About Tungnath Temple:

  • Tungnath Temple is in Rudraprayag District, Uttarakhand.
  • It is the highest Shiva temple in the world, located at an altitude of 3680 meters.
  • The temple is almost 1000 years old and is believed to have been built during an ancient era.
  • The temple is built in the North Indian style of architecture and has a dozen shrines of other Gods surrounding the main temple.

What are Panch Kedars?

  • Panch Kedar is a group of five sacred shrines of Lord Shiva located in the Garhwal Himalayas, Uttarakhand.
  • Tungnath Temple is one of the Panch Kedars and is located at an altitude of 3,680 m (12,070 ft).
  • The other four temples in the group are Kedarnath Temple (3,583 m or 11,755 ft), Rudranath Temple (3,559 m or 11,677 ft), Madhyamaheshwar Temple or Madmaheshwar (3,490 m or 11,450 ft), and Kalpeshwar Temple (2,200 m or 7,200 ft).
  • All five temples are sacred and hold great significance for Lord Shiva\’s devotees.

The Panch Kedars are important pilgrimage sites for Hindus, especially for those who worship Lord Shiva

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