UPSC MOCK TEST SOLUTION-2017
1) Answer: A
Explanation: The fundamental argument of the environmental determinists was that aspects of physical geography, particularly climate, influenced the psychological mind-set of individuals, which in turn defined the behaviour and culture of the society that those individuals formed.
For e.g., tropical climates were said to cause laziness, relaxed attitudes, promiscuity and generally degenerative societies, while the frequent variability in the weather of the middle latitudes led to more determined and driven work ethics and thus more civilized and 'stronger' societies.
The theory that opposes it is Possibilism. It argues that the environment only sets certain constraints or limitations, but culture is otherwise determined by social conditions.
Neodeterminism or stop and go determinism is the middle way between both concepts.
2) Answer: D
Explanation: Anaerobic digestion is particularly suited to organic material, and is commonly used for industrial effluent, wastewater and sewage sludge treatment.
Anaerobic digestion, a simple process, can greatly reduce the amount of organic matter which might otherwise be destined to be dumped at sea, dumped in landfills, or burnt in incinerators.
3) Answer: C
Explanation: It is a collection of techniques used to maintain or grow plant cells, tissues or organs under sterile conditions on a nutrient culture medium of known composition.It is widely used to produce clones of a plant in a method known as micro propagation.
Advantages over traditional methods of propagation:
- The production of exact copies of plants that produce particularly good flowers, fruits, or have other desirable traits.
- To quickly produce mature plants.
- The production of multiples of plants in the absence of seeds or necessary pollinators to produce seeds.
- The regeneration of whole plants from plant cells that have been genetically modified.
- The production of plants in sterile containers that allows them to be moved
4) Answer: A
Explanation: The degree of economic integration can be categorized into seven stages:
- Preferential trading area
- Free trade area
- Customs union
- Common market
- Economic union
- Economic and monetary union
- Complete economic integration
These differ in the degree of unification of economic policies, with the highest one being the completed economic integration of the states, which would most likely involve political integration as well.
Explanation: The degreeIn India, coastal shipping moves just 7% of the local freight despite a coastline of 7,517km dotted with 12 state-owned ports and around 200 smaller harbours. The share is low compared with the European Union, where coastal shipping has a 43% share of the cargo traffic. In the US, it has a 15% share.
6) Answer: B
Explanation: Aspartame is one of the most common artificial sweeteners in use today
Aspartame is used in many foods and beverages because it is about 100-200 times sweeter than sugar, so much less of it can be used to give the same level of sweetness. This, in turn, lowers the calories in the food or beverage.
In the body, aspartame is broken down into phenylalanine, aspartic acid, and methanol. Methanol can be toxic in high amounts, but the amounts that result from the breakdown of aspartame is lower than with many "natural" foods.
7) Answer: C
Statement 1: It was officially launched at World Economic Forum (WEF) Davos this year (2017).
Statement 2: CEPI’s plan includes preparations for possible outbreaks of Marburg fever, Lassa fever, MERS, SARS, Nipah virus, Rift Valley fever, chikungunya, and others.
Statement 3: There are no proposals to fund GIS maps in LDCs. SO, 3 is wrong. Under it, CEPI will solicit proposals from academic researchers and industry to develop candidate vaccines for its three target viruses.
Explanation: The OPEC Statute distinguishes between the Founder Members and Full Members - those countries whose applications for membership have been accepted by the Conference.
The Statute stipulates that "any country with a substantial net export of crude petroleum, which has fundamentally similar interests to those of Member Countries, may become a Full Member of the Organization, if accepted by a majority of three- fourths of Full Members, including the concurring votes of all Founder Members."
9) Answer: D
Explanation: The organization's objectives stated in the Articles of Agreement are: to promote international monetary cooperation, international trade, high employment, exchange-rate stability, sustainable economic growth, and making resources available to member countries in financial difficulty.
Member countries of the IMF have access to information on the economic policies of all member countries, the opportunity to influence other members' economic policies, technical assistance in banking, fiscal affairs, and exchange matters, financial support in times of payment difficulties, and increased opportunities for trade and investment.
10) Answer: D
Explanation: Madhubani painting/Mithila painting was traditionally created by the women of the Brahman, Dusadh and Kayastha communities in Mithila region in Nepal and India. So, 1 is incorrect.
Originally the paintings depicted an assembly of symbolic images of the lotus plant, the bamboo grove, fishes, birds and snakes in union. These images represented fertility and proliferation of life. So, 2 is incorrect too.Madhubani painting received official recognition in 1975, when the President of India gave Padma Shri award to Jagdamba Devi, of Jitwarpur village near Madhubani. In 1981 Sita Devi was awarded by Padma Shri , In 1990, Ganga Devi of Mithila was awarded Padma Shri. Other painters, Mahasundari Devi (2008), Godavari Dutt, BhartiDayal and Bua Devi were also given National award. So, 3 is incorrect.
11) Answer: A
Explanation: An expert committee under Dhirendra Singh was constituted in May 2015. The Committee was tasked to evolve a policy framework to facilitate 'Make in India' in defence manufacturing and align the policy evolved with DPP-2013.
12) Answer: A
Explanation: Chhau is a style performed exclusively by men from the triangular area where Bihar, Bengal and Orissa meet. This is the tribal belt of India home to the tribal groups of Bhulya, Santhals, Mundas, Hos and Oraons.
13) Answer: D
Statement 1 is not correct : A proclamation of emergency may be revoked by the President at any timeby a subsequent proclamation. Such a proclamation does not require the parliamentary approval.
However, proclamation of national emergency can be done only after receiving a written recommendationfrom the cabinet.
Statements 2 and 3 are not correct: President must revoke the Emergency , if the LokSabha (only)
passes a resolution disapproving its continuation by simple majority ( 44th Amendment Act, 1978)
14) Answer: A
Explanation: The budget goes through six steps. The first three stages are: Presentation, General Discussion and Scrutiny by departmental committees.
• On the basis of report of the departmental committees, the LokSabha takes up voting of demand for grants. The demands are presented ministry wise. A demand become a grant after it has been voted upon. The next step is the passing of Appropriation bill. This is done in order to satisfy the constitutional requirement which says: "no money shall be withdrawn from the Consolidated Fund of India except under appropriation made by law".
• However, passing of this bill takes time. In the meantime, government needs certain amount to run its normal activities. To overcome this functional difficulty, the constitution has authorised the LokSaha to make any grant in advance in respect to the estimated expenditure for a part of the financial year, pending the completion of the voting of demands for grants and the enactment of the appropriation bill. This provision is known as the 'vote on account'. It is passed after the general discussion on budget is over.
• Finally, the Finance Bill is introduced to give effect to the financial proposals of the Government of India for the following year. The Finance Act legalises the income side of the budget and completes the process of the enactment of the budget
15) Answer: B
Explanation: A threatened breed of sheep found only in coastal Jagatsinghpur and Kendrapara districts of Odisha has been conferred 'rare and singular species' tag by the Central government. The National Bureau of Animal Genetic Resources (NBAGR) has accorded genetic recognition to the breed of sheep, locally called 'kujimendha'.
• The sheep that are reared in this part are delicate domestic animals. Sheep in other parts of Odisha are not known for giving multiple birth. This characteristic makes them distinctive from other species.
• In Sundarbans area of West Bengal, Garol breed sheep are found who are multiple-breeders. Kendrapara district accounts for about 75,000 'kuji' breed of sheep. Because of multiple-birth characteristics, rearing of 'kuji' sheep is a profitable livelihood source
16) Answer: D
Explanation: India's first Green Rail Corridor has been inaugurated on the 114-km long Rameswaram- Manamadurai stretch in Tamil Nadu. About 150 coaches in 13 pairs of express and passenger trains, running in the section, would have biotoilets and there would be zero discharge of human waste on tracks in the section. Rameswaram railway station, which handled the trains, had already been developed as a 'Green Station' to handle the bio-toilets in the coaches. To ensure proper working of the bio-toilets, Southern Railway has established a bio-lab at the coaching depot, which handled the coaches, for testing the discharge. Indian Railway has developed the environment friendly „IR-DRDO Bio-toilets ?, in association with Defence Research and Development Organisation (DRDO). Regenerative type anaerobic bacteria in liquid form are poured into the six-chamber retention tanks in the bio-toilets and the bacteria helps in disintegrating human waste into liquid and gas. The liquid is chlorinated and discharged with no harm to the environment
17) Answer: A
Explanation: The LokSabha can express lack of confidence in the government in the following ways:
• By not passing a motion of thanks on the President's inaugural address.
•By rejecting a money bill.
•By passing a censure motion or an adjournment motion.
•By defeating the government on a vital issue.•By passing a cut motion.
Explanation: All the questions regarding disqualification of Members of state legislature are decided by Governor in consultation with Election Commission of India. Speaker has the power to decide questions of disqualification only under Tenth schedule i.e. Antidefection law.
19) Answer: A
Explanation: The 'nine-dash line' stretches hundreds of kilometers south and east of its southerly Hainan Island, covering the strategic Paracel and Spratly island chains. China laid claim to the SCS back in 1947. It demarcated its claims with a U-shaped line made up of eleven dashes on a map, covering most of the area. The Communist Party, which took over in 1949, removed the Gulf of Tonkin portion in 1953, erasing two of the dashes to make it a nine-dash line.
20) Answer: A
Explanation: The Union Agriculture Ministry and the U.S. Agency for International Development (USAID) have launched the second phase of the „Feed the Future? India triangular training programme in a bid to bring specialised agriculture training to 1,500 agricultural professionals across Africa and Asia. The first phase trained more than 200 professionals from Kenya, Liberia and Malawi, and they are now implementing the new farming methods to increase farm productivity and income. India and the U.S. are expanding the programme with the second phase launch to reach hundreds of professionals and in turn thousands of smallholder farmers
21) Answer: A
Explanation: Statement 1 is correct: They are a naturally occurring, ice-like combination of natural gas and water. Generally they are found in oceans and Polar Regions. By nature, Gas hydrates are mostly methane (CH4). Methane gas hydrate is most stable at the seafloor at water depths which is below about 500 meters. They are considered as vast resources of natural gas and are known to occur in marine sediments on continental shelf margins. The total amount of gas available within the world's gas hydrate accumulations is believed to greatly exceed the quantity of all known conventional gas resources.
Statement 2 is not correct: India has discovered a potentially producible large accumulation of natural gas hydrate in the KG Basin off the east coast. Gas hydrate resources in India are estimated to be at 1,894 trillion cubic meters and these deposits are mainly found in Western, Eastern and Andaman offshore areas.
22) Answer: D
Explanation: Madhya Pradesh has become the first State in the country to set up a 'Happiness Department'. It will work to ensure "happiness in the lives of the common people" on the lines of the neighbouring country Bhutan. The newly-constituted department will give suggestions to ensure happiness in the lives of the people. The State Government believes that happiness will not come into the lives of people merely with materialistic possessions or development but by infusing positivity in their lives so that they don’t take extreme steps like suicide.
23) Answer: B
Explanation: The Red Corridor is a region in the east of India that experiences considerable NaxaliteMaoist insurgency. The 106 districts that span 10 States ( Bihar, Jharkhand, Andhra Pradesh, Maharashtra, Odisha, Telangana, West Bengal, Madhya Pradesh, Uttar Pradesh and Chhattisgarh) are described as those affected by Left Wing Extremism (LWE) and constitute the Red Corridor.
24) Answer: B
Explanation: National Automotive Testing and R&D Infrastructure Project (NATRiP), the largest and one of the most significant initiatives in Automotive sector. It represents a unique joining of hands between the Government of India, a number of State Governments and Indian Automotive Industry to create a state of the art Testing, Validation and R&D infrastructure in the country. The Project aims at creating core global competencies in Automotive sector in India and facilitate seamless integration of Indian Automotive industry with the world as also to position the country prominently on the global automotive map.
25) Answer: D
Explanation: The United Nations World Health Organization (WHO) has announced the elimination of yaws, and maternal and neonatal tetanus in India. India is the first country under the 2012 WHO neglected tropical diseases (NTD) roadmap to eliminate yaws, a disease known to affect the most underserved population. In January 2016, India completed five years of being polio-free. The last case of polio in the country was reported from Howrah district in West Bengal on January 13, 2011.
26) Answer: D
Explanation: Antrix Corporation Limited (Antrix), incorporated on 28 September 1992 (under the Companies Act, 1956), is a wholly owned Government of India Company under the administrative control of Department of Space (DOS). Antrix is the commercial arm of Indian Space Research Organisation (ISRO). Antrix promotes and commercially markets the products and services emanating from the Indian Space Programme.In the year 2008, the Company was awarded ?MINIRATNA? status. The current business activities of Antrix include: a) Provisioning of communication satellite transponders to various users, b) Providing launch services for customer satellites, c) Marketing of data from Indian and foreign remote sensing satellites, d) Building and marketing of satellites as well as satellite sub-systems, e) Establishing ground infrastructure for space applications, and f) Mission support services for satellites.
27) Answer: B
Explanation: The A 'mixed site' exhibits qualities of both natural and cultural significance.
• The United Nations Educational, Scientific and Cultural Organization (UNESCO), has added Sikkim's Khangchendzonga National Park (KNP) and Chandigarh' Capitol Complex in its list of World Heriatge Sites.
•Khangchendzonga National Park (KNP) in Sikkim has been named a world heritage site by the World Heritage Committee (WHC) of UNESCO. It is the first 'mixed' heritage site from India to make it to the list.
• The Khangchendzonga National Park exhibits one of the widest altitudinal ranges of any protected area worldwide. It covers 25 per cent of Sikkim, is home to a significant number of endemic, rare and threatened plant and animal species. The park combines the religious and cultural practices of Buddhism as well as the ecological significance of the region, and stands out as an outstanding example of traditional knowledge and environmental preservation. It is also a unique example of coexistence and exchange between different religious traditions and people.
28) Answer: D
Explanation: Kerala Government has proposed a "Fat Tax" on fast food items like burgers, pizzas, donuts and pasta etc.served in branded restaurants in a bid to discourage the junk food culture.
The revised state budget for 2016-17 expects the Fat tax will add an additional Rs.10 crore to the state coffers. The fat tax’s major concern is with issues related to public health more than revenue generation.
29) Answer: B
Explanation: The eleventh edition of the Asia-Europe Meeting Summit (ASEM11) or ASEM2016 issued Ulaanbaatar Declaration. The declaration has reaffirmed ASEM's commitment for greater partnership through informal political dialogue and initiatives in economic and socio-cultural fields. It also has expressed its commitment for united fight against terrorism and violent extremism.
30) Answer: D
Explanation: Through the Global Gender Gap Report, the World Economic Forum quantifies the magnitude of genderdisparities and tracks their progress over time, with a specific focus on the relative gaps between womenand men across four key areas: health, education, economy and politics. The 2016 Report covers 144countries. India has been ranked 87th out of 144 countries.
31) Answer: D
Explanation: Non-injury to living beings, especially to humans, animals, plants and insects, is central to Jaina philosophy. In fact the principle of ahimsa, emphasised within Jainism, has left its mark on Indian thinking as a whole.
According to Jaina teachings, the cycle of birth and rebirth is shaped through karma. Asceticism and penance are required to free oneself from the cycle of karma. This can be achieved only by renouncing the world; therefore, monastic existence is a necessary condition of salvation. Jaina monks and nuns took five vows: to abstain from killing, stealing and lying; to observe celibacy (Brahmacharya); and to abstain from possessing property.
32) Answer: A
Explanation: India and the United States have signed the Logistics Exchange Memorandum Of Agreement (LEMOA). LEMOA is a facilitating agreement that establishes basic terms, conditions, and procedures for reciprocal provision of Logistic Support, Supplies, and Services between the armed forces of India and the United States. Logistic Support, Supplies, and Services include food, water, billeting, transportation, petroleum, oils, lubricants, clothing, communication services, medical services, storage services, training services, spare parts and components, repair and maintenance services, calibration services, and port services. Reciprocal logistic support would be used exclusively during authorized port visits, joint exercises, joint training, and humanitarian assistance and disaster relief efforts. The Logistics Support Agreement (LSA), Communications Interoperability and Security Memorandum of Agreement (CISMOA) and Basic Exchange and Cooperation Agreement (BECA) for Geo-spatial Cooperation are the three foundational agreements that the US has been insisting on India to sign to further enhance the bilateral defence and strategic relationship.
33) Answer: A
Explanation: Populus is a genus of 25-35 species of deciduous flowering plants, native to most of the Northern Hemisphere. They have the advantage of growing to a very large size at a rapid pace. In India, the poplar is grown commercially by farmers which are used to obtain plywood. It has been in news as prices of the poplar wood are not increasing, negatively impacting agro forestry, despite a rapid increase in the prices of ply wood and its products. Poplar trees also produce cotton. In Kashmir, profuse dehiscence of cotton from the populus has resulted in aggravating respiratory diseases and allergies, causing irritation of eyes, nose and throat and spreading fungal and bacterial infections that get trapped in the cotton and multiply. In this regard, in 2015, the High Court of Jammu and Kashmir had ordered the removal of Russian Poplar trees planted in the valley.
34) Answer: A
Explanation: TransboundaryManas Conservation Area (TraMCA) covers Manas National Park (MNP) on the Indian side and the Royal Manas National Park (RMNP) in Bhutan. TraMCA, floated in 2008, is a joint initiative of India and Bhutan for trans-boundary biodiversity conservation. In 2016, the second monitoring of tigers across the TransboundaryManas Conservation Area (TraMCA) covering Manas National Park (MNP) in Indian side and the Royal Manas National Park (RMNP) in Bhutan has found altogether 21 individual tigers. The region is home to flagship species like tigers, elephants, rhinos, pygmy hog, Bengal Florican, hispid hare and more than 1500 other species of mammals, birds and vascular plants. This space is also equally rich with diverse cultures and traditions of indigenous communities that live both on Bhutan and Indian side of this transboundary landscapes.
35) Answer: A
Explanation: The Hyogo Framework for Action (2005–2015): Building the Resilience of Nations and Communities to Disasters was an outcome of the 2005 conference. The Hyogo Framework (HFA) was the first plan to explain, describe and detail the work required from all different sectors and actors to reduce disaster losses. The Third UN United Nations World Conference on Disaster Risk Reduction was held in Sendai, Japan in 2015 and resulted in Sendai framework. The Sendai Framework is a 15-year non-binding agreement which recognizes that the State has the primary role to reduce disaster risk but that responsibility should be shared with other stakeholders including local government and the private sector. The Doha Development Round or Doha Development Agenda (DDA) is the trade-negotiation round of the World Trade Organization (WTO) which commenced in November 2001.
36) Answer: B
Explanation: First generation biofuels are made from the sugars and vegetable oils found in arable crops, which can be easily extracted using conventional technology. First generation bioethanol is produced by fermenting plant-derived sugars to ethanol. This requires the use of 'food' crops, such as sugar cane molasses, corn, wheat, and sugar beet. These crops are required for food, so, if too much biofuel is made from them, food prices could rise and shortages might be experienced in some countries.
In comparison, second generation biofuels are made from lignocellulosic biomass or woody crops, agricultural residues or waste, which makes it harder to extract the required fuel. Second generation biofuels, also known as advanced biofuels, are fuels that can be manufactured from various types of biomass. Second generation ethanol generation technology is capable of converting all types of agricultural residues like bagasse, rice and wheat straw, bamboo, cotton stalk, corn stover, wood chips to ethanol.
37) Answer: D
Explanation: 'Tamizhakham' refers to the cultural & economic contacts established between the north & south as a result of trade between people which became important from 4th century BC.
38) Answer: D
Explanation: The Bani festival celebrated at the Devaragattu Temple in the Kurnool district of Andhra Pradesh is a 100-year-old festival where devotees from AndhraPradesh and Karnataka gather and hit each other on the head from midnight till dawn, to commemorate the killing of a demon by Mala Malleshwara (Shiva), earlier axes and spears were used instead of lathis.
The fifth day of the lunar month of Shravan is celebrated as Nag Panchami across India and Nepal when snakes and ant hills are worshipped.
39) Answer: D
Explanation: An IDA International Dark Sky Reserve is a public or private land possessing an exceptional or distinguished quality of starry nights and nocturnal environment that is specifically protected for its scientific, natural, educational, cultural, heritage and/or public enjoyment. Reserves consist of a core area meeting minimum criteria for sky quality and natural darkness, and a peripheral area that supports dark sky preservation in the core. Reserves are formed through a partnership of multiple land managers who have recognized the value of the natural nighttime environment through regulations and long term planning. The
- International Dark-Sky Association (IDA) Dark Sky Places program offers five types of designations:
- International Dark Sky Communities - Communities are legally organised cities and towns that adopt quality outdoor lighting ordinances and undertake efforts to educate residents about the importance of dark skies.
- International Dark Sky Parks - Parks are publicly or privately owned spaces protected for natural conservation that implement good outdoor lighting and provide dark sky programs for visitors.
- International Dark Sky Reserves - Reserves consist of a dark "core" zone surrounded by a populated periphery where policy controls are enacted to protect the darkness of the core.
- International Dark Sky Sanctuaries - Sanctuaries are the most remote (and often darkest) places in the world whose conservation state is most fragile.
- Dark Sky Developments of Distinction- Developments of Distinction recognizes subdivisions, master planned communities, and unincorporated neighborhoods and townships whose planning actively promotes a more natural night sky but does not qualify them for the International Dark Sky Community designation.
Statement 3 is correct: There is no certified Dark Sky Reserve in India.
Explanation: Kerala Bird Atlas is a citizen science project, to map the distribution and abundance of birds in the entire state. Kerala has the distinction of having six bird monitoring schemes, which includes recording common birds, heronries, water birds, pelagic (sea) birds, and forest birds.The project has begun in Wayanad district.
41) Answer: D
Explanation: Muziris in Kerala, Korkai, Kaveripattinam and Arikamedu on the southern tip of present-day India were the main centers of this trade and major ports belong to the Sangam age.
42) Answer: C
Explanation: The Union Cabinet gave its approval for signing of 15 years contract by the Ministry of Earth Sciences with the International Seabed Authority (ISA) for undertaking exploration and other developmental activities related to Polymetallic Sulphides in the allotted area of 10,000 sq km. It will be done in parts of Central and South - West Indian Ridges (SWIR), located in the Indian Ocean.
Explanation: Imposition of KrishiKalyan Cess of 0.5% was announced in the Budget 2016-17. KKC is a cess, applicable on all services. Hence new effective Service Tax hence increased to 15% from 14.5%. It is to be solely used towards financing activities for the improvement of agriculture and farmer welfare. Budget target for KrishiKalyan Cess is Rs. 5000 crore. It is a measure to mitigate agrarian distress. Over the long-term, improvement in agricultural productivity will help farmers earn higher income and consumers benefit and low inflation from lower prices as a result of better supplies.
44) Answer: D
Explanation: LiDAR is a highly accurate scientific surface/topographic data acquisition technology with active sensing system. That is, it uses its own energy source for remote sensing rather than reflecting naturally emitted radiation. This mode allows direct acquisition of terrain information. This system can be brought to use for engineering designs, conservation planning, floodplain mapping, surface feature extraction (trees, shrubs, roads and buildings) and vegetation mapping (height and density). The various projects where LiDAR is applied in India from a geospatial perspective are: Power line transmission and pipeline corridor planning, Earthquake study and disaster management, Space and planetary studies, Urban modelling, Oil and gas exploration surveys, Transportation studies and surveys including road, rail, air and sea, Climatic study, Flood risk mapping, Forestry, Study on airport exclusion zones, High-resolution mapping, 3-dimensional modeling of structures, Engineering and construction surveys, Real estate development, Coastal zone mapping, Rectification of satellite imagery. The technology is also being brought into use for organizing high-security event in stadiums, campuses and other spaces. A lidar system uses laser pulses to measure atmospheric constituents such as aerosol particles, ice crystals, water vapor, or trace gases (e.g. ozone). Profiles of these atmospheric components as a function of altitude or location are necessary for weather forecasting, climate modeling, and environmental monitoring.
Explanation: The Revolutionary Armed Forces of Colombia (FARC, after the initials in Spanish) are Colombia's largest rebel group. They were founded in 1964 as the armed wing of the Communist Party and follow a Marxist-Leninist ideology. 18 www.visionias.in ©Vision IAS Their main founders were small farmers and land workers who had banded together to fight against the staggering levels of inequality in Colombia at the time. While the Farc have some urban groups, they have always been an overwhelmingly rural guerrilla organisation.
Explanation: A hysterectomy is an operation to remove a woman's uterus for different reasons, which generally includes: Cancer of the uterus, cervix, or ovaries, Abnormal vaginal bleeding, Chronic pelvic pain, a thickening of the uterus etc. Hysterectomy for noncancerous reasons is usually considered only after all other treatment approaches have been tried without success. Hysterectomies have been reported from rural pockets of States like Rajasthan, Bihar, Chhattisgarh, Karnataka, Maharashtra etc in recent times.
Explanation: The Union Cabinet has approved the establishment of "Fund of Funds for Startups" (FFS) at Small Industries Development Bank of India (SIDBI). FFS will make contribution to various Alternative Investment Funds (AIF),registered with Securities and Exchange Board of India (SEBI) which would extend funding support to Startups. This is in line with the Start up India Action Plan unveiled by Government in January 2016. The corpus of FFS is Rs.10,000crore which shall be built up over the 14th and 15th Finance Commission cycles subject to progress of the scheme and availability of funds. The Fund is expected to generate employment for 18 lakh persons on full deployment. Further provisions will be made as grant assistance through Gross Budgetary Support by Department of Industrial Policy and Promotion (DIPP) which will monitor and review performance in line with the Start-up India Action Plan.
48) Answer: B
Explanation: The Bhimyatra was organised by the SafaiKaramcharisAndolan in 2016, under the leadership of Bezwada Wilson. It launched on International Human Rights Day to commemorate B R Ambedkar’s 125th birth anniversary.Theyatris are family members of workers killed by hazardous fumes while they were inside manholes and sewage lines.
49) Answer: B
Explanation: Nadir Shah was a Persian ruler who came to India in 1739. The Mughal empire had been weakened by ruinous wars of succession in the three decades following the death of Aurangzeb, the Hindu Marathas of the Maratha Empire had captured vast swathes of territory in Central and Northern India, whilst many of the Mughal nobles had asserted their independence and founded small states. o At the Battle of Karnal on 24 February 1739, Nadir led his army to victory over the Mughals, Muhammad Shah surrendered and both entered Delhi together. Nadir shah took to Persia the Peacock Throne, Kohinoor diamond (mountain of light) and dariya-I- Noor (sea of light) diamond.
50) Answer: D
Explanation: Statement 1 is not correct. CCIT was first proposed by India in 1996. The ratification of the Comprehensive Convention on International Terrorism is in a limbo due to opposition from the US and OIS countries. (Organisation of Islamic Countries and Latin America). India has revived its two decade old proposal for the adoption of the CCIT at the UN General Assembly, given the recent spate of terror attacks across the globe. Statement 2 and 3 are correct. It proposes to ban all terror groups regardless of country of operation. It aims to make cross-border terrorism an extraditable offence worldwide by amending domestic laws. It also proposes to adopt a universal definition of terrorism - with no distinction between good or bad terrorism.
Explanation: The International Organization for Migration (IOM) is an intergovernmental organization that provides services and advice concerning migration to governments and migrants, including internally displaced persons, refugees, and migrant workers. The UN General Assembly unanimously adopted a resolution in July 2016 approving an agreement to make the International Organisation for Migration part of the UN as a related organization.
52) Answer: D
Explanation: Stromatolites are calcareous mound built up of layers of lime-secreting cyanobacteria and trapped sediment, found in Precambrian rocks as the earliest known fossils. Scientists have found fossils of a tiny structure called stromatolites in ancient sedimentary rock along the Greenland’s ice caps.
Significance of this finding:
I. The finding has push back the date of origin of life on earth by hundreds of millions years. (Note: In geological terms, earth was originated 4.5 bn years ago)
II. The structure and geology of the rock in which the stromatolite fossils has been found points to a rapid emergence of life on earth.
III. The finding will also through light on the kind of earliest form of life that existed on earth and how they evolved.
IV. The finding will have great implication on our understanding of life on Mars and other planets. Probably a very basic life might have existed of Mars
53) Answer: B
Explanation: The Berne Convention, adopted in 1886, deals with the protection of works and the rights of their authors. It provides creators such as authors, musicians, poets, painters etc. with the means to control how their works are used, by whom, and on what terms. It is based on three basic principles and contains a series of provisions determining the minimum protection to be granted, as well as special provisions available to developing countries that want to make use of them.
Explanation: The development of nano nose to detect cancer by analysing breathing is a milestone. It helps experts pick up the one in a million molecules that are exhaled by patients to see if they are suffering from cancer. This is a non-invasive method and does not need complicated diagnostic measures.
Explanation: Data Exclusivity refers to a practice whereby, for a fixed period of time, drug regulatory authorities do not allow the test data of the innovator company to be used to register a equivalent generic version of that medicine.
To simplify it, top multi-national pharmaceutical giants spend time, money and huge investment (Research and Development) to assess the efficacy, quality and safety of the new product. This process is known as clinical trial and it involves enormous amount of expenditure, time and money. Forexample clinical trial process to test the efficacy, quality and safety of a new anti-cancer drug may take 6- 7 years or in some cases even 15 years.
Explanation: The three day long Joint Disaster Management Exercise named Prakampana (Cyclone in Sanskrit) was held in Visakhapatnam (Vizag) in September 2016.
i. It is a maiden exercise aimed at synchronizing resources and efforts of all agencies involved in disaster management.
ii. It was conducted by the Eastern Naval Command in liaison with concerned Centre and State authorities.
iii. Prakampana is a synergy between armed forces and civil administration during the Humanitarian Assistance and Disaster Relief (HADR) situations.
iv. The armed forces, in association with the National Disaster Management Authority and the NDRF participated in these exercises.
v. The exercise holds importance in current scenario as India is prone to natural hazards and disasters.
vi. Similar exercises can be held for disasters in specific areas like landslides in Himalayan region, drought situation in central India and even road accidents at high danger zones.
57) Answer: B
Explanation: National Payment Corporation of India has developed RuPay Card, IMPS and BHIM App as e-payment services. RTGS is not facilitated by NPCI. In RTGS, the settlements of funds transfer happen through RBI.
58) Answer: B
Explanation: The The SCO comprises six member states:
Turkmenistan is not a member of SCO. India and Pakistan have signed the memorandum of obligations on 24 June 2016 at Tashkent, thereby starting the formal process of joining the SCO as a full member.
Explanation: The Index of Economic Freedom is an annual index and ranking created by The Heritage Foundation and The Wall Street Journal in 1995 to measure the degree of economic freedom in the world's nations.
i. A classic definition of economic freedom for individuals is when the 'rightly acquired economic property of people is protected and the people are free to use, exchange, or give their property as long as their actions do not violate the identical rights of others'.
ii. Thus, essentially, economic freedom is dependent on the following broad dimensions: Security of privately-owned property, levels of personal choice, ability to enter markets and the rule of law.
60) Answer: A
Explanation: Long March 3B is a Chinese orbital carrier rocket. It is mainly used to place communications satellites into geosynchronous orbits. China recently launched the first satellite dubbed as The Tiantong-01 for mobile telecommunication. It was launched on-board of the Long March-3B carrier rocket from Xichang Satellite Launch Centre.
61) Answer: A
Explanation: Redshift and blueshift describe how light changes as objects in space (such as stars or galaxies) move closer or farther away from us. The concept is key to charting the universe's expansion.
62) Answer: B
Explanation: The Global Peace Index (GPI) measures the relative position of nations' and regions' peacefulness. It is launched by Institute for Economics and Peace (IEP). IEP develops it in consultation with an international panel of peace experts from peace institutes and think tanks with data collected and collated by the Economist Intelligence Unit.
i. India is ranked as the 141st country (out of 163 countries) in GPI 2016.
ii. Iceland has been ranked as the most peaceful country followed by Denmark and Austria.
iii. Syria has been named as the least peaceful preceded by South Sudan, Iraq, and Afghanistan.
Explanation: The Ministry of Drinking Water and Sanitation, in partnership with Ministry of Youth Affairs and Sports and Ministry of Water Resources, River Development and Ganga Rejuvenation, has launched ‘Swachh Yug’ campaign. It involves intensifying support to the five States of Uttarakhand, Uttar Pradesh, Bihar, Jharkhand and West Bengal to make all villages along the banks of the Ganga, Open Defecation Free (ODF).
64) Answer: D
Explanation: Peer-To-Peer Lending (P2P) is a method of debt financing that enables individuals to borrow and lend money. It doesn't involve use of an official financial institution as an intermediary. It happens through online services that match lenders directly with borrowers. This reduces cost and increase access to capital.
65) Answer: A
Explanation: Blue Bond is a type of green bond which specifically invests in climate resilient water management and water infrastructure. However, bonds used to specifically finance water infrastructure projects are also termed as blue bonds.
66) Answer: D
The Scheme of Mega Food Park aims at providing a mechanism to link agricultural production to the market by bringing together farmers, processors and retailers so as to ensure maximizing value addition, minimizing wastage, increasing farmers’ income and creating employment opportunities particularly in rural sector. Hence, statement 1 is correct.
The Mega Food Park Scheme is based on “Cluster” approach and envisages a well-defined agree/ horticultural-processing zone containing state-of-the art processing facilities with support infrastructure and well-established supply chain. Hence, statement 2 is correct.
A Mega Food Park is located in the area of a minimum of 50 acres and works in a cluster based approach based on a hub and spokes model. Hence, statement 3 is correct.
67) Answer: A
Explanation: The Union government recently approved setting up Rail Development Authority (RDA), an independent regulator to recommend passenger and freight fares. It will act within parameters of Railway Act, 1989 and undertake the following broad functions: tariff determination, ensuring fair play and level playing field for stakeholder investment in Railways, setting efficiency and performance standards, dissemination of information. The RDA will help the government take appropriate decisions on important policy and operational issues, including pricing of services commensurate with costs, suggest measures for enhancement of non-fare revenue, ensure protection of consumer interests, promote competition, encourage market development, create positive environment for investment and promote efficient resource allocation. It will also benchmark service standards, suggest measures for absorption of new technologies and human resource development and provide a framework for non-discriminatory open access to the dedicated freight corridor infrastructure. Hence, statements 1 and 2 are correct. RDA will only be a recommendatory body and the final decisions on setting fares will be made by the Railway Ministry. Hence, statement 3 is incorrect.
68) Answer: C
Explanation: El Salvador, Central America's smallest nation, has become the first country in the world to ban metals mining nationwide following a long-running dispute with a Canadian-Australian company over an environmentally questioned gold project. El Salvador's capital and largest city is San Salvador.
69) Answer: A
Explanation: The Indian Council of Agricultural Research (ICAR) through the Indian Agricultural Research Institute (IARI) has formulated a collaborative research project entitled “SENSAGRI: SENsor based Smart AGRIculture” involving six partner Institutes (Agriculture & IT) to be funded by Information Technology Research Academy (ITRA), Department of Electronics and Information Technology (DEITY), Ministry of Communication and Information Technology (MCIT), Govt. of India and ICAR.
The major obective is to develop indigenous prototype for drone based crop and soil health monitoring system using hyperspectral remote sensing (HRS) sensors.
Explanation: The Union HRD Ministry has recently in February of 2017 constituted a sub-committee of Central Advisory Board of Education (CABE) under Chairmanship of KadiyamSrihari to look into issues of girl's education.
It seeks to:
I. Examine the reasons for low participation of girls in education, including the socio-economic factors with resultant gender bias and suggest ways to reduce gender disparity so as to achieve better gender parity index.
II. Analyse girl's participation at all levels of school education across socio-economic groups of SC/ST, minorities and in rural-urban areas and reduce existing educational disparities.
III. Examine the existing schemes, measures and incentives aimed at enhancing girls participation and ensuring their retention in education and suggest improvements and modifications in the existing schemes.
71) Answer: B
Explanation: Stent is a tube-shaped device which is inserted into a blocked blood vessel. It helps clear the blockage in arteries, sometimes through physical means (Bare Metal stents) and often through the drugs it gives out at a slow rate (Drug eluting stents). Thinner the stent, more sophisticated and expensive it is supposed to be.
Explanation: Assam government has initiated a project to make river islandMajuli the country's first ever Carbon Neutral district by 2020. The project titled 'Sustainable Action for Climate Resilient Development in Majuli' (SACReD, Majuli) has been initiated by Assam's department of Environment and Forest. Majuli is the biggest river island in the world and also the first island district of the country. The island had a total area of 1,250 square kilometers at the beginning of the 20th century, but has lost a major chunk of its land due to relentless erosion by the Brahmaputra.
73) Answer: D
Explanation: The Energy Architecture Performance Index (EAPI), developed by the World Economic Forum, aims to provide an additional set of data to help leaders benchmark the current performance of national energy systems, and inform decision-making in the context of the changes under way in the global energy landscape. Being compiled since 2013, the Energy Architecture Performance Index (EAPI) is a composite index that focuses on tracking specific indicators to measure the energy system performance of 127 countries. It has 18 indicators defined across the three sides of the 'energy triangle' economic growth and development, environmental sustainability, and energy access and security. India has marginally improved its position to 87th place this year (2017). Top 5 Countries are: Switzerland (1), Norway (2), Sweden (3), Denmark (4) and France (5).
74) Answer: B
Explanation: The National Highways Authority of India has been recently entrusted with developing India's first Personal Rapid Transit (PRT) network or pod taxis, to be named Metrino for Delhi-NCR region. These pod taxis are small, automated, driverless vehicles that travel independently, suspended under an overhead network of light guideways, 5-10m above the street, with docking stations for passengers to get on and off.
Explanation: The world’s largest artificial sun, called Synlight, by the German Aerospace Centre (DLR) was switched on the 23rd of March 2017, with the intention of innovating the production of renewable energy. Synlight is housed in a three-storey building in Jülich, Germany and is composed of 149 Xenon short-arc lamps which can produce a scorching heat of up to 3,000 degrees Celsius.
Explanation: Through the Forest Action Plan FY16-20, the World Bank Group aims to boost the potential of forests to lift people out of poverty and generate lasting social, economic, and environmental returns.
77) Answer: A
Explanation: Aditya L-1 is India's first dedicated scientific mission to study the sun. Aditya-L1 mission will be inserted in a halo orbit around the L1, which is 1.5 million km from the Earth. The satellite carries additional six payloads with enhanced science scope and objectives. Aditya L-1 with additional experiments (than Aditya) can now provide observations of Sun's Photosphere (soft and hard X-ray), Chromosphere (UV) and corona (Visible and NIR). In addition, particle payloads will study the particle flux emanating from the Sun and reaching the L1 orbit, and the magnetometer payload will measure the variation in magnetic field strength at the halo orbit around L1. These payloads have to be placed outside the interference from the Earth‘s magnetic field and thus could not have been useful in the low earth orbit.
78) Answer: B
Explanation: The Treaty of Lisbon (initially known as the Reform Treaty) is an international agreement which amends the two treaties which form the constitutional basis of the European Union (EU). The Treaty of Lisbon was signed by the EU member states on 13 December 2007, and entered into force on 1 December 2009. It amends the Maastricht Treaty (1993) and the Treaty of Rome (1957). It has been in news due to BREXIT. Article 50 of the Treaty of Lisbon gives any EU member the right to quit unilaterally, and outlines the procedure for doing so. It gives the leaving country two years to negotiate an exit deal and once it's set in motion it can't be stopped except by unanimous consent of all member states.
Explanation: Under the scheme National Mission on Bovine Productivity e-pashuhaat portal has been developed for connecting breeders and farmers regarding availability of bovine germplasm. It is an initiative under the Ministry of Agriculture. Through this portal, farmers will be aware about the availability of quality disease free bovine germplasm with different agencies in the country. The portal will lead to propagation of high genetic merit germplasm.
Aims and Objectives:
i. E-Trading, Market portal for livestock germplasm and additional related services.
ii. Will connect farmers with breeders - Central, State, Co-operative, Milk Federations, and private agencies.
iii. Real time authentic certified information on availability of germplasm
80) Answer: D
Explanation: The Union Government launched National Seismic Programme (NSP) to trace hydrocarbon resources like oil and natural gas in Mahanadi basin. It was launched by Ministry of Petroleum and Natural Gas at Taranga village under Soro block in Balasore district of Odisha. NSP aims to undertake a fresh appraisal in all sedimentary basins across India in order to have better understanding of the hydrocarbon potential of the country. Under this programme, high-resolution 2D seismic Acquisition, Processing and Interpretation (API) survey will be conducted across India especially in the sedimentary basins. The survey will be conducted by state owned Oil and Natural Gas Corporation (ONGC) and Oil India Limited (OIL). The survey project will be completed by March 2019. ONGC will conduct the survey of around 40,835 Line Kilo Meter (LKM) in onland part of 26 sedimentary basins in 18 states/UTs including Mahanadi basin.
Explanation: Algorithm trading is a system of trading which facilitates transaction decision making in the financial markets using advanced mathematical tools.
In this type of a system, the need for a human trader's intervention is minimized and thus the decision making is very quick. This enables the system to take advantage of any profit making opportunities arising in the market much before a human trader can even spot them.
As the large institutional investors deal in a large amount of shares, they are the ones who make a large use of algorithmic trading. It is also popular by the terms of algo trading, black box trading, etc. and is highly technology-driven.
Explanation: The Ku band is a portion of the electromagnetic spectrum in the microwave range. The Ku band (Kurtz-under band) is primarily used for satellite communications, particularly for editing and broadcasting satellite television.
• The Ka band covers the radio frequencies i.e. wavelengths from slightly over one centimeter down to 7.5 millimeters. The Ka band is part of the K band of the microwave band of the electromagnetic spectrum.
• ISRO has scheduled the launch of GSLV-Mk III-D1 in May, 2017. The GSLV-Mk III-D1 launcher would carry GSAT-19 satellite which has a mass of 3200 kg.
• The satellite would carry Ka and Ku band payload along with a Geostationary Radiation Spectrometer (GRASP) payload to monitor and study the nature of the charged particles and influence of space radiation on spacecraft and electronic components.
• The Ku band has got crowded and it is believed that Ka, which can support higher data transmission by at least two or three fold, will be preferred for non-broadcasting applications.
• The biggest advantages of Ka band are the higher bandwidth it offers. On the flip side, Ka transmission is vulnerable to outages during rain.
Explanation: The Goldilocks Zone refers to the habitable zone around a star where the temperature is just right - not too hot and not too cold - for liquid water to exist on a planet. Looking for planets in the Goldilocks Zone is a way that allows scientists to hone in their search for Earth-like planets that could contain life. Basically, the assumption is that if it's possible there may be liquid water on the planet, then it's also possible that the planet may be habitable.
84) Answer: D
Explanation: The India was ranked 40th among the 136 economies across the world in 2017 Travel and Tourism Competitiveness Index (TTCI) released by the World Economic Forum (WEF). In this edition of index, India has jumped 12 places from earlier 52nd position in 2015. But it lagged behind its other Asian peers like Japan (4th) and China (13th). The Travel and Tourism Competitiveness Index measures the set of factors and policies that enable the sustainable development of the travel and tourism sector, which in turn, contributes to the development and competitiveness of a country. The Travel and Tourism Competitiveness Index enables all stakeholders to work together to improve the industry‘s competitiveness in their national economies
85) Answer: D
Explanation: White Cheeked Macaque are found in Anjaw District of Arunachal Pradesh. Macaques, are distant cousins of langurs and gibbons. White Cheeked Macaque is the 22nd known macaque species and the 9th in India.
86) Answer: B
Explanation: International North-South Transport Corridor (INSTC), is a multi modal transportation established in the year 2000 at St. Petersburg, by Iran, Russia and India for the purpose of promoting transportation cooperation among the Member States. This corridor connects India Ocean and Persian Gulf to the Caspian Sea via Islamic republic of IRAN, then is connected to St. Petersburg and North European via Russian Federation.
• The INSTC was expanded to include eleven new members, namely: Republic of Azerbaijan, Republic of Armenia, Republic of Kazakhstan, Kyrgyz Republic, Republic of Tajikistan, Republic of Turkey, Republic of Ukraine, Republic of Belarus, Oman, Syria, Bulgaria (Observer).
• Ashgabat Agreement between India, Kazakhstan, Oman, Iran, Turkmenistan and Uzbekistan would synchronise with the efforts to implement the International North South Transport Corridor (INSTC) for enhanced connectivity. Hence, statement 2 is correct.
87) Answer: B
Explanation: The Multilateral Investment Guarantee Agency (MIGA), an arm of World Bank, was set up in 1988 to encourage foreign investment in developing economies by offering insurance (guarantees) to foreign private investors against loss-caused by non-commercial (i.e. political) risks, such as currency transfer, expropriation, war and civil disturbance. IFC lends to both private and public sector.
88) Answer: D
Explanation: World Development Report - IBRD (World Bank), Global Financial Stability Report – IMF, World Investment Report – UNCTAD, Global Competitiveness Report - World Economic Forum.
89) Answer: B
Explanation: The RBI identified the State Bank of India and the ICICI Bank as Domestic Systematically Important Banks in 2016. These banks have to maintain higher capital under Basel norms and are subject to greater central bank scrutiny. It is because they cover more than 10% of total transactions in their sector.
90) Answer: D
Explanation: The The objective of the scheme was “UdeDeshKaAamNaagrik”. UDAN will be applicable on flights which cover between 200 km and 800 km with no lower limit set for hilly, remote, island and security sensitive regions. The scheme seeks to reserve a minimum number of UDAN seats i.e. seats at subsidized rates and also cap the fare for short distance flights. The scheme UDAN envisages providing connectivity to unserved and underserved airports of the country through revival of existing air-strips and airports. UDAN is to be operated by DGCA while Greenfield Airports are developed under Airport Authority of India.
Explanation: This term has been so much in the news after demonetisation as authorities like CBDT have started treating many as suspects and creating scare among people.
92) Answer: A
Explanation: Imports under GST will be treated as inter-state transactions and subjected to IGST in addition to the prevailing rate of custom duty. This implies that GST will be imposed in the state in which imported goods are consumed.
93) Answer: A
Explanation: Non-banking financial companies, micro-finance institutions and such other entities come under the scope of shadow banking. It is in fact not banking alone in the true sense but may also involve all kinds of investment, products, including mutual funds and private equity. This is why Shadow Banking is often called “bank loans in disguise” because a bank is often at the core of the transactions e.g. offering implicit guarantee for the various wealth products it sells to non-banks it engages with.
94) Answer: B
Explanation: 'Housing for All' in rural areas : The Government proposes to provide an environmentally safe and secure pucca house to every rural household by 2022. Named the PradhanMantriAwaasYojana (Gramin), in its first phase the target is to complete one crore houses by March 2019.
The selection of beneficiaries has been through a completely transparent process using the Socio Economic Census 2011 data and validating it through the Gram Sabha. The programme targets the poor households and uses ICT and space technology to further confirm correct selection of beneficiaries and progress of work. The entire payments are through IT/DBT mode with Aadhaar linked Bank accounts with consent, to ensure complete transparency and accountability.
95) Answer: B
Explanation: It is a triennial international learning aptitude test for 15-16 year old school students across countries or economies. It evaluates education systems in 70 countries by testing the academic abilities of 15-year-old students in each country.
- It measures student performance in Arithmetic, Reading, and Science literacy.Hence statement 3 is correct.
- PISA programme is conducted by the Organization for Economic Cooperation and Development (OECD).Hence Statement 2 is incorrect.
- After performing very badly in 2009 (India ranked second from the last), India has backed out of PISA 2012 and 2015.
96) Answer: A
Explanation: Several ministries such as Environment, Shipping, Urban Development, Tourism, Rural Development have been working with the nodal Water Resources Ministry to undertake projects.
97) Answer: D
Explanation: NHAI has rolled out program for Electronic Toll Collection on Toll Plazas on National Highways to be called FASTag.
- FASTag is a device that employs Radio Frequency Identification (RFID) technology for making toll payments directly from the prepaid account linked to it. It is affixed on the windscreen of your vehicle and enables you to drive through toll plazas.
- FASTag has a validity of 5 years and after purchasing it,one would only need to recharge/ top up the FASTag as per his/her requirement.
- FASTag offers near non-stop movement of vehicles through toll plazas and the convenience of cashless payment of toll fee with nation-wide interoperable Electronic Toll Collection Services.
98) Answer: D
Explanation: PradhanMantriUjjwalaYojana - It is a scheme for Providing Free LPG connections to Women from BPL Households. Under the scheme, Rs 8000 crore has been earmarked for providing five crore LPG connections to BPL households. The Scheme provides a financial support of Rs 1600 for each LPG connection to the BPL households. The identification of eligible BPL families will be made in consultation with the State Governments and the Union Territories.
99) Answer: A
Explanation:Union Government has launched SetuBharatam Project to make all national highways free Sof railway crossings by 2019. This project will be implemented by the Union Ministry of Road Transport and Highways. Under this project 208 places have been identified for construction of rail over-bridges (ROB) or underpasses under the project.
Explanation: Carbapenems are antibiotics used for the treatment of infections known or suspected to be caused by multidrug-resistant (MDR) bacteria. Their use is primarily in people who are hospitalized. Carbapenems are termed “critically important” for human health by WHO. Carbapenems are a last line of defense against drug-resistant bacteria. It is used to treat diseases when no other antibiotics are known to work.