Bioterrorism - Daily Current Affair Article

Reference :-

  • In the recently released report "The Outbreak of Pandemic and Its Management Report" by the Parliamentary Committee, the Committee has characterized the need for a law on bioterrorism as a learning of the Corona epidemic.

Introduction :-

  • Recently the Parliamentary Committee has released The Outbreak of Pandemic and Its Management Report in which the Committee referred to the problems encountered during the corona. The committee has highlighted the rise in health expenditure, closure of OPD, digital divide, and an increase in suicide as the biggest problems due to the corona epidemic. In the same report, the committee cited the need for legislation to prevent bioterrorism as Corona's biggest lesson.

What is Bio-terrorism: -

  • Bioterrorism is a type of purposeful violent terrorist activity in which biological weapons are used. Biological mediums such as viruses, bacteria are often used in this mode, which harms the cells of humans or plants. This can lead to disability or death of an infected person (or plant).
  • It is being used by terrorists as well as technologically rich countries.
  • Bioterrorism in the modern days defined as an activity under which the virus and bacteria are developed by humans only naturally or artificially and planned to do serious harm to innocent people, animals, or plants against a nation for its achieving their purpose.

Substances used in bioterrorism

  • CDC (Centers for Disease Control and Prevention )is divided biological substances into some of the major ones, which are as follows:

Class A biological substances :

  • In this category there are substances that have a very high infection rate from one person to another.
  • It also has a higher death rate. There is a large number of casualties.
  • Therefore, to deal with these, special health awareness requires preparation.
  • Some diseases caused by this category are anthrax, plague, etc.

Class-B biological substances

  • They spread slightly slower than Class-A.
  • It has lower mortality than class A.
  • This class of diseases causes diseases like brucellosis, glanders.

Class-C organic matter

  • These are new biomaterials, which are easily transmitted.
  • There is a possibility of spreading at very high rate.
  • Example Nipah Virus

Use of biological weapons

  • On a historical basis, the use of biological weapons was first seen in the war between Mesopotamia and the Assyrian Empire.
  • In the epidemic called the Black Death in the Roman Empire, dead animals were used by Mongols near the cities of the Roman Empire.
  • In the modern era, it was used by German soldiers in World War I (1914–18).
  • In the war between China and Japan, biological weapons were used by Japan.

Measures to control the use of biological weapons

  • After the use of biological weapons by Germany in the First World War, everyone saw its destructiveness, so its prevention measures started. The Geneva Convention of 1925 was the first international event where the issue was raised for the control of biological weapons. But there was no concrete result.
  • After some time Biological Weapons Convention was signed in 1972. This was the first major success against biological weapons at the international level. India signed the convention in 1973. The treaty was implemented in March 1975. Today there are 183 members of this convention
  • The objective of this Convention is to minimize the possibility of biological warfare on a global scale and to prevent the production, storage, distribution of biological weapons in any situation.

Conclusion

  • The whole world is in danger due to the novel coronavirus which came into existence last year. It started with the city of China (Wuhan). Many countries have been accused China that the virus of this epidemic has been prepared in Chinese laboratories. This situation once created an issue of bioterrorism. India has also been among the countries most affected by Covid-19. Due to Covid, India's growth rate was negative to -23%. In this situation, the Parliamentary Committee of India has laid down the need for legislation on bioterrorism as a learning of the Covid epidemic.
General Studies Paper 3
  • Science and Technology and Internal Security

Mains Question:-

  • What do you understand by bioterrorism? Discuss the efforts made globally for its prevention?