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Daily Prelims Test – 06_July 2021

Sometimes Bagram airbase is seen in the news, it belongs to which of the following countries?

a) Pakistan

b) India

c) Bangladesh

d) Afghanistan

Answer: (d) Afghanistan

Explanation:

In NEWS: Explained: Exiting Bagram & a long war

  • Last week, the US and allies exited Bagram airbase, the centrepiece of their presence in Afghanistan. Tracing the history that underlines its significance for Afghanistan, the former USSR and the US over the years. Hence option (d) is correct
  • It was the largest U.S. military base in Afghanistan. It is located next to the ancient city of Bagram.
  • It was the centre of the war against militants for some 20 years. This was informed by the US officials.
  • Bagram is at the junction of the Ghorband and Panjshir Valley, near today’s city of Charikar, Afghanistan.

Cold War airfield

  • Believed to be the ancient Kapisa — the grammarian Panini referred to the city of Kapisi in the kingdom of Kapisa, and the intoxicating Kapisayana wine that was one of its famed exports – Bagram is in Parwan, one of the 34 provinces of Afghanistan, although the province to its east is now called Kapisa.
  • Parwan is key to the control of much of Afghanistan. The 2.6 km-long Salang tunnel, high in the Hindu Kush, connects Kabul to Mazar-e-Sharif, and other cities in the north and beyond. Highways run to Bamiyan in the west and to Ghazni and Kandahar in the south.
  • The airbase near the town of Bagram is a little over 60 km north of Kabul. It has always been a military base. The Soviets built the airstrip in the 1950s. These were the Cold War years when the Soviets were backing Fidel Castro in Cuba and the Americans were looking at Afghanistan with renewed interest to check the Soviets and the spread of communism.

Source: https://indianexpress.com/article/explained/explained-exiting-bagram-a-long-war-7388990/

Consider the following statements regarding Financial Stability Report (FSR):

  • It is published twice a year by the Reserve bank of India.
  • It is one of the most crucial documents on the Indian economy as it presents an assessment of the health of the financial system.

Which of the statement(s) given above is/are correct?

a) 1 only

b) 2 only

c) Both 1 and 2

d) Neither 1 nor 2

Answer: (c) Both 1 and 2

Explanation:

In NEWS: In a year dominated by Covid-19, financial stability is intact

  • The central bank now expects about 9.8 per cent of gross advances to be non-performing by March 2022, in the baseline scenario
  • The FSR has found that the actual level of bad loans as of March 2021 is just 7.5%.
  • The FSR is quick to point out that “macro-stress tests” for credit risk show that the GNPA ratio of Scheduled Commercial Banks may increase from 7.48 per cent in March 2021 to 9.80 per cent by March 2022.
  • It highlighted that SCBs return on assets (RoA) and return on equity (RoE) maintained a positive uptrend through 2020- 2.
  • Their capital to risk-weighted assets ratio (CRAR) improved by 130 bps year-on-year to reach 16 per cent in March 2021.
  • The gross non-performing assets (GNPA) and net NPA (NNPA) ratios remained stable during the second half of 2020-21, amounting to 7.5 per cent and 2.4 per cent respectively in March 2021.
  • The overall provisioning coverage ratio (PCR) increased from 66.2 per cent in March-2020 to 68.9 per cent in March 2021.
  • The sectors of concern for NPAs:
  • CGEM (construction, gems and jewelry, engineering and mining) have over 15% ratio while metals, infra, power, textiles, food etc. are in double digits.
  • Chemicals and auto have done well with 5-7% range.
  • The gross NPA ratio for private banks could rise to 5.82% by March 2022 from 4.78% as of March 2021 under the baseline scenario.
  • The PSU Banks could see their bad loans rise to 12.52% which reported a gross NPA ratio of 9.54% as of March 2021.

What is the Financial Stability Report (FSR)?

  • It is one of the most crucial documents on the Indian economy as it presents an assessment of the health of the financial system. Hence statement (2) is correct.
  • It is published twice a year. Hence statement (1) is correct.
  • It puts together a wealth of data and information that also allows the RBI to assess the state of the domestic economy.
  • It allows the RBI to assess the macro-financial risks in the economy.

Source: https://www.business-standard.com/article/economy-policy/statsguru-in-a-year-dominated-by-covid-19-financial-stability-is-intact-121070400759_1.html

Consider the following statements regarding Short Span Bridging System:

  • It is designed and developed by the
  • It will help in quick movement of troops and enhance the mobilization of resources.

Which of the statement(s) given above is/are correct?

a) 1 only

b) 2 only

c) Both 1 and 2

d) Neither 1 nor 2

Answer: (c) Both 1 and 2

Explanation:

In NEWS: Army inducts 10m bridging system developed by DRDO

  • The Army on Friday inducted the first production lot of 12 Short Span Bridging System (SSBS)-10m, designed and developed by the Defence Research and Development Organisation (DRDO) in association with

About Short Span Bridging System (SSBS)

  • It is designed and developed by the Research & Development Establishment Pune, a premier engineering laboratory of Defence Research and Development Organisation (DRDO). Hence statement (1) is correct.
  • The production agency of SSBS is M/s L&T Ltd.
  • It plays a crucial role of bridging the gaps up to 9.5 m as a single span providing a 4 m wide, fully decked roadway, ensuring faster movement of the troops.
  • It involved the development of two prototypes of 5 m SSBS on Tatra 6×6 chassis and another two prototypes of 10 m SSBS on Tatra 8×8 re-engineered chassis.
  • It is compatible with Sarvatra Bridging System (75 m), where the last span requires covering gaps less than 9.5 m.

Significance of Short Span Bridging System (SSBS)

  • It will help in quick movement of troops and enhance the mobilization of resources. Hence statement (2) is correct.
  • It will give a boost to the fast-growing Indian defence industrial ecosystem.
  • It will help the industry to contribute towards ‘Atmanirbhar Bharat’.
  • It will enhance the mechanised formation in western front capability and operation speed will also increase.
  • It will help the force overcome geographical obstacles like small rivers and canals in case of operations along the western borders with Pakistan.

Source: https://www.thehindu.com/news/national/army-inducts-10m-bridging-system-developed-by-drdo/article35110822.ece

Consider the following statements regarding Trafficking in Persons (Prevention, Care and Rehabilitation) Bill, 2021:

  • The bill defines exploitation to include the exploitation of the person for prostitution or other forms which includes forced removal of organs or illegal clinical drug trials.
  • National Investigation Agency (NIA) shall act as the national investigating and coordinating agency responsible for prevention and combating of trafficking in persons.
  • The bill will extend to all citizens inside as well as outside India.

Which of the statement(s) given above is/are correct?

a) 1 only

b) 2 and 3 only

c) 1 and 2 only

d) 1, 2 and 3

Answer: (d) 1, 2 and 3

Explanation:

In NEWS: Draft anti-trafficking Bill widens scope of offences, includes stringent penalties

  • The recommendations for the Bill are to be submitted to the Ministry by July 14.
  • The Ministry of Women and Child Welfare on Sunday invited suggestions and comments for its Trafficking in Persons (Prevention, Care and Rehabilitation) Bill, 2021 which it has released. The Bill, which will now be sent to the cabinet for approval before being tabled in Parliament, has increased the scope of the nature of offenses of trafficking as well as the kind of victims of these offenses, with stringent penalties including life imprisonment, and even the death penalty in cases of an extreme nature.

About Trafficking in Persons (Prevention, Care and Rehabilitation) Bill, 2021.

  • The objective of the bill is to prevent and counter trafficking in persons, especially women and children.
  • The bill has increased the scope of the nature of offenses of trafficking as well as the kind of victims of these offenses with stringent penalties.

Key Provisions of the Bill:

  • Definition: The bill defines exploitation to include the exploitation of the person for prostitution or other forms. Which includes pornography, forced labour, forced removal of organs or illegal clinical drug trials. Hence statement (1) is correct.
  • Includes Transgender: The bill extends beyond the protection of women and children as victims. It now includes transgenders as well as any person who may be a victim of trafficking.
  • Victim Definition: The bill does away with the provision that a victim necessarily needs to be transported from one place to another to be defined as a victim of trafficking.
  • Punishment: The Punishment will be for a minimum of seven years period, which can go up to an imprisonment of 10 years and a fine of Rs 5 lakh. However, in cases of the trafficking of more than one child, the penalty is life imprisonment. In certain cases, even the death penalty can be sought.
  • Nodal Investigative Agency: National Investigation Agency(NIA) shall act as the national investigating and coordinating agency responsible for prevention and combating of trafficking in persons. Hence statement (2) is correct.
  • Jurisdiction: The bill will extend to all citizens inside as well as outside India. It will also be applied to every offence of trafficking in persons with cross-border implications. Hence statement (3) is correct.
  • Seizing of Property: Property bought via trafficking as well as used for trafficking can now be forfeited, similar to that of the money laundering Act.
  • Coverage: The scope of the Bill vis a vis offenders will now also include defence personnel and government servants, doctors and paramedical staff or anyone in a position of authority.

Source: https://indianexpress.com/article/india/govt-invites-suggestions-draft-anti-trafficking-bill-widens-scope-of-offences-includes-stringent-penalties-7389122/

Consider the following statements regarding National Board for Wildlife:

  • It is constituted by the Central Government under the Wildlife (Protection) Act, 1972 (WLPA).
  • It is chaired by India’s Prime Minister and its vice-chairman is the Minister of Environment.
  • It serves as an apex body to review all wildlife-related matters and approve projects in and around national parks and sanctuaries.

Which of the statement(s) given above is/are correct?

a) 1 only

b) 2 and 3 only

c) 1 and 2 only

d) 1, 2 and 3

Answer: (d) 1, 2 and 3

Explanation:

In NEWS: ‘In 2020, wildlife board cleared land diversion for 48 projects’

  • The National Board for Wildlife (NBWL), an apex body which takes a call on use of land from different conservation areas for development activities, had approved diversion of around 1,792 hectares — an area equal to the size of 3,349 football fields — of wildlife habitat for 48 projects in 2020
  • The SC-NBWL had considered 82 proposals, out of which 25 were for diversion within wildlife sanctuaries and national parks.
  • Most of the projects cleared were for linear diversion within sanctuaries, national parks, and tiger reserves

About National Board for Wildlife

  • The NBWL is constituted by the Central Government under Section 5 A of the Wildlife (Protection) Act, 1972 (WLPA). Hence statement (1) is correct.
  • It serves as an apex body to review all wildlife-related matters and approve projects in and around national parks and sanctuaries. Hence statement (3) is correct
  • The board is advisory in nature and advises the Central Government on framing policies and measures for conservation of wildlife in the country.
  • It is chaired by India’s Prime Minister and its vice-chairman is the Minister of Environment. Hence statement (2) is correct
  • The NBWL has 47 members including the chairperson.
  • Among these, 19 members are ex-officio members.
  • Every new government constitutes a new board, based on the provisions of the WLPA, with the new PM as the chair.
  • The primary function of the NBWL is to promote the conservation and development of wildlife and forests.
  • It has the power to review all wildlife-related matters and approve projects in and around national parks and sanctuaries.
  • No alteration of boundaries in national parks and wildlife sanctuaries can be done without the approval of the NBWL.

Source: https://timesofindia.indiatimes.com/india/in-2020-wildlife-board-cleared-land-diversion-for-48-projects/articleshow/84129084.cms

Consider the following statements regarding Clinical Trial Registry-India:

  • It is primary register of Clinical Trials under the International Clinical Trials Registry Platform by World Health Organisation
  • It facilitates will make use of Ayurveda terminologies to record clinical study meta data on the basis of Ayurveda interventions

Which of the statement(s) given above is/are correct?

a) 1 only

b) 2 only

c) Both 1 and 2

d) Neither 1 nor 2

Answer: (c) Both 1 and 2

Explanation:

In NEWS: AYUSH Minister Kiren Rijiju launches Ayurveda dataset on Clinical Trials Registry- India CTRI Portal

  • CTRI is a primary register of Clinical Trials under WHO’s International Clinical Trials Registry Platform (ICTRP) and creation of Ayurveda dataset in CTRI facilitates usages of Ayurveda terminologies to record clinical study meta data based on Ayurveda interventions.

About Clinical Trial Registry-India

  • CTRI is the primary register of Clinical Trials under the International Clinical Trials Registry Platform (ICTRP) by World Health Organisation (WHO).  Hence statement (1) is correct
  • Creation of Ayurveda dataset in CTRI facilities will make use of Ayurveda terminologies to record clinical study meta data on the basis of Ayurveda interventions. Hence statement (2) is correct
  • Till date, clinical trials in Ayurveda were dependent on terminology borrowed from modern medicine. With this portal and joint efforts of ICMR and CCRAS, Ayurvedic terminology has become part of CTRI.
  • The Ayurveda Dataset of CTRI has been jointly developed by Indian Council of Medical Research (ICMR) and Central Council for Research in Ayurvedic Sciences (CCRAS) under the Ministry of Ayush.

Features of CTRI Portal

  • Key feature of this digital platform is provision of selection of Ayurveda Health conditions from the drop down of 3866 Ayurveda morbidity codes.
  • These codes have been incorporated from the NAMASTE portal (developed by AYUSH Ministry). On NAMASTE portal, morbidity statistics pertaining to Ayurveda has been classified as per International Classification of Diseases standards.  Thus information & results of Ayurveda Clinical Trials will be available in Ayurvedic vocabulary in clinical trials registry of Indi

Source: https://newsonair.com/2021/07/05/ayush-minister-kiren-rijiju-launches-ayurveda-dataset-on-clinical-trials-registry-india-ctri-portal-2/

Consider the following statements regarding section 66A of IT Act:

  • It defines the punishment for sending “offensive” messages through a computer or any other communication device like a mobile phone or a tablet.
  • It provides for punishment of a maximum of three years in jail

Which of the statement(s) given above is/are correct?

a) 1 only

b) 2 only

c) Both 1 and 2

d) Neither 1 nor 2

Answer: (c) Both 1 and 2

Explanation:

In NEWS: SC aghast that Section 66A of IT Act is still used

  • The Supreme Court found it “distressing”, “shocking” and “terrible” that people were still booked and tried under Section 66A of the Information Technology (IT) Act even six years after it struck down the provision as unconstitutional and a violation of free speech.
  • SC issued notice during the hearing of a plea filed by PUCL (People’s Union for Civil Liberties). The plea pointed out that even after 7 years of law being struck down, about 745 cases are still pending and active before district courts in 11 states where accused persons are being prosecuted for offences in accordance with Section 66A of IT Act.
  • As per data, even after the Shreya Singhal Judgment of March 2015 that struck down Section 66A, around 1307 cases were registered under it.

What is section 66A of IT Act?

  • Section 66A of IT Act provides for punishment of a maximum of three years in jail and a fine on sending “offensive” messages through computer or any other communication device such as mobile phone or tablet. Hence statement (1) is correct and statement (2) is correct.
  • This section was used to punish online communication which is considered “offensive & menacing” and “false to cause annoyance, inconvenience, insult, danger, obstruction, injury, hatred, criminal intimidation or ill will.”
  • SC had struck down this provision on March 24, 2015. SC noted the provision as “vague and arbitrary”. Section 66A was dubbed as “draconian” as it allowed arrest of several innocent persons

Source: TH Pg:No: 1

Consider the following statements regarding Gomati River:

  • It is a left-bank tributary of the Ganga.
  • It rises from Gomat Tall in the Pilibhit district of Uttarakhand.

Which of the statement(s) given above is/are correct?

a) 1 only

b) 2 only

c) Both 1 and 2

d) Neither 1 nor 2

Answer: (a) 1 only

Explanation:

In NEWS: Gomti project: CBI searches 40 locations

  • Officials of Central Bureau of Investigation (CBI) are conducting raids across several districts in Uttar Pradesh in connection with alleged scam in Gomti River Front Development Project.
  • Gomti Riverfront Development Project This project was launched in 2015 by the previous Samajwadi Party led Uttar Pradesh government with Akhilesh Yadav as chief minister. Many prominent environmentalists have pointed out that the project was seen as an interference in river systems.

About The Gomati River

  • It is a left-bank tributary of the GangaHence statement (1) is correct.
  • It rises from Gomat Tall in the Pilibhit district of Uttar Pradesh. It joins the Ganges at Ghazipur in Uttar Pradesh before flowing through the cities of Lucknow and Jaunpur. Hence statement (2) is incorrect.

Source: TH Pg:No: 10

Consider the following statements regarding Open Network for Digital Commerce:

  • It is a project initiated by the Department for Promotion of Industry and Internal Trade.
  • It aims at promoting open networks developed on open sourced methodology, using open specifications and open network protocols independent of any specific platform.

Which of the statement(s) given above is/are correct?

 a) 1 only

 b) 2 only

 c) Both 1 and 2

 d) Neither 1 nor 2

Answer: (c) Both 1 and 2

Explanation:

In NEWS: Setting up of Advisory Council for Open Network for Digital Commerce (ONDC)

  • Department for Promotion of Industry and Internal Trade (DPIIT), Ministry of Commerce and Industry has initiated a project on Open Network for Digital Commerce (ONDC). Hence statement (1) is correct.
  • The task has been assigned to the Quality Council of India (QCI).
  • ONDC aims at promoting open networks developed on open sourced methodology, using open specifications and open network protocols independent of any specific platform. Hence statement (2) is correct.
  • ONDC is expected to digitize the entire value chain, standardize operations, promote inclusion of suppliers, derive efficiencies in logistics and enhance value for consumers.
  • An advisory council has been constituted to advise the Government on measures needed to design and accelerate adoption of ONDC.
  • The government has appointed National Health Authority CEO Ram Sewak Sharma and Infosys non-executive chairman Nandan Nilekani as members of an advisory council for creating an Open Network for Digital Commerce (ONDC).

Source: TH Pg:No: 12

The painting of Bodhisattva Padmapani is one of the most famous and oft – illustrated paintings at

a) Ajanta

b) Badami

c) Bagh

d) Ellora

Answer: (c) Ajanta

Explanation:

The painting is on the back wall of the interior hall before the shrine – antechamber in Cave No. 1 at Ajanta dating back to the late fifth century CE. The Bodhisattva is holding a padma (lotus), has large shoulders, and has three bents in the body creating a movement in the picture space. The modelling is soft. The figure of the Bodhisattva is wearing a big crown in which detailed rendering is visible. Hence option (c) is correct.