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Daily Prelims Test – 07_July 2021

Consider the following statements regarding Martian auroras:

  • They trace their origin to a patchy network of crustal magnetic fields that originate from minerals on the surface of Mars.
  • Like auroras on Earth, discrete auroras are seen only near the north and south poles.
  • It was detected by the Mangalyaan mission of India.

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

a) 1 only

b) 2 only

c) 1 and 2 only

d) 1, 2 and 3

Answer: (a) 1 only

Explanation:

In NEWS: Explained: What UAE’s Hope orbiter tells us about discrete auroras on Mars

  • The Hope Probe, the Arab world’s first mission to Mars, took off from Earth in July last year, and has been orbiting the Red Planet since February. The primary objective of the mission is to study Martian weather dynamics.Hence statement (3) is incorrect.
  • The UAE’s Hope spacecraft, which is orbiting Mars since February 2021, has captured images of glowing atmospheric lights in the Red Planet’s night sky, known as discrete auroras.
  • They trace their origin to a patchy network of crustal magnetic fields that originate from minerals on the surface of Mars. Hence statement (1) is correct.
  • Unlike auroras on Earth, which are seen only near the north and south poles, discrete auroras on Mars are seen all around the planet at night time. Hence statement (2) is incorrect.

So, how are Martian auroras different?

  • Unlike Earth, which has a strong magnetic field, the Martian magnetic field has largely died out.
  • This is because the molten iron at the interior of the planet– which produces magnetism– has cooled.
  • However, the Martian crust, which hardened billions of years ago when the magnetic field still existed, retains some magnetism.
  • So, in contrast with Earth, which acts like one single bar magnet, magnetism on Mars is unevenly distributed, with fields strewn across the planet and differing in direction and strength.
  • These disjointed fields channel the solar wind to different parts of the Martian atmosphere, creating “discrete” auroras over the entire surface of the planet as charged particles interact with atoms and molecules in the sky– as they do on Earth.
  • Studying Martian auroras is important for scientists, for it can offer clues as to why the Red Planet lost its magnetic field and thick atmosphere– among the essential requirements for sustaining life.

Source: https://indianexpress.com/article/explained/uae-hope-orbiter-discrete-auroras-mars-7390298/

Consider the following statements regarding aurora on Earth:

  • Auroras occur when charged particles ejected from the Sun’s surface enter the Earth’s atmosphere.
  • It disrupts the magnetic field in the magnetosphere of earth.
  • It is visible in the poles because of the continuous incoming of solar winds to earth in the poles.

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

a) 1 only

b) 2 only

c) 1 and 2 only

d) 1, 2 and 3

Answer: (d) 1, 2 and 3

Explanation:

In NEWS: Explained: What UAE’s Hope orbiter tells us about discrete auroras on Mars

  • An Aurora is a display of light in the sky predominantly seen in the high latitude regions (Arctic and Antarctic). It is also known as a Polar light.
  • They commonly occur at high northern and southern latitudes, less frequent at mid-latitudes, and seldom seen near the equator.
  • While usually a milky greenish color, auroras can also show red, blue, violet, pink, and white. These colors appear in a variety of continuously changing shapes.
  • Auroras are not just something that happens on Earth. If a planet has an atmosphere and magnetic field, they probably have auroras.

What causes an aurora on Earth?

  • Auroras are caused when charged particles ejected from the Sun’s surface — called the solar wind — enter the Earth’s atmosphere. Hence statement (1) and (2) are correct
  • These particles are harmful, and our planet is protected by the geomagnetic field, which preserves life by shielding us from the solar wind. Hence statement (3) is correct.
  • However, at the north and south poles, some of these solar wind particles are able to continuously stream down, and interact with different gases in the atmosphere to cause a display of light in the night sky.
  • This display, known as an aurora, is seen from the Earth’s high latitude regions (called the auroral oval), and is active all year round.
  • In the northern part of our globe, the polar lights are called aurora borealis or Northern Lights, and are seen from the US (Alaska), Canada, Iceland, Greenland, Norway, Sweden and Finland.
  • In the south, they are called aurora australis or southern lights, and are visible from high latitudes in Antarctica, Chile, Argentina, New Zealand and Australia.

Source: https://indianexpress.com/article/explained/uae-hope-orbiter-discrete-auroras-mars-7390298/

With reference to Fengyun-3E (FY-3E), consider the following statements:

It is a new meteorological satellite launched by China.

It will monitor the global snow cover, sea surface temperature, natural disasters and ecology to better respond to climate change and prevent and mitigate meteorological disasters.

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: China launches new satellite to improve weather forecast, monitor sea temperature

  • The satellite was launched into planned orbit from the Jiuquan Satellite Launch Centre in northwest China, state-run Xinhua news agency reported.
  • China successfully launched a new meteorological satellite, called Fengyun-3E(FY-3E). Hence statement (1) is correct

About Fengyun-3E

  • Fengyun-3E(FY-3E) is designed with a lifespan of eight years.
  • It will mainly obtain the atmospheric temperature, humidity and other meteorological parameters for numerical prediction applications, improving China’s weather forecast capacity.
  • It will also monitor the global snow cover, sea surface temperature, natural disasters and ecology to better respond to climate change and prevent and mitigate meteorological Hence statement (2) is correct
  • In addition, the satellite will monitor solar and space environments and their effects, as well as ionospheric data to meet the needs of space weather forecasts and supporting services.

Source: https://indianexpress.com/article/technology/science/china-launches-new-satellite-fy3e-7389963/

Consider the following statements regarding Harit Dhara:

  • It is an anti-methanogenic feed supplement developed by the Indian Council of Agricultural Research.
  • It decreases the population of protozoa microbes in the rumen which is responsible for hydrogen production.

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: A farmer-friendly solution to cut cattle methane emissions

  • Belching cattle, buffaloes, sheep and goats in India emit an estimated 9.25 million tonnes (mt) to 14.2 mt of methane annually, out of a global total of 90 mt-plus from livestock. And given methane’s global warming potential – 25 times of carbon dioxide (CO2) over 100 years, making it a more potent greenhouse gas – that’s cause for concern.
  • Indian Council of Agricultural Research (ICAR) has developed an anti-methanogenic feed supplement ‘Harit Dhara’ (HD), which can cut down cattle methane emissions by 17-20% and can also result in higher milk production. Hence statement (1) is correct.
  • HD decreases the population of protozoa microbes in the rumen, responsible for hydrogen production and making it available to the archaea (structure similar to bacteria) for reduction of CO2 to methane. Hence statement (2) is correct.
  • It has been made from tannin-rich plant-based sources. Tropical plants containing tannins, bitter and astringent chemical compounds, are known to suppress or remove protozoa from the rumen.
  • Fermentation after using HD will help produce more propionic acid, which provides more energy for lactose (milk sugar) production and body weight gain. This leads to economic benefits for farmers.
  • Rumen, the first of the four stomachs where they eat plant material, cellulose, fibre, starch and sugars. These get fermented or broken down by microorganisms prior to further digestion and nutrient absorption.
  • Carbohydrate fermentation leads to production of CO2 and hydrogen. These are used by microbes (Archaea) present in the rumen to produce methane.

Source: https://indianexpress.com/article/india/feed-developed-by-icar-also-increases-weight-milk-production-feed-supplement-reduces-methane-emissions-by-livestock-7389140/

Consider the following statements regarding Convention on the Rights of the Child:

  • The recruitment or use of children below the age of 15 as soldiers is prohibited by this convention.
  • India ratified this convention.

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: Explained: US puts Pakistan, Turkey on Child Soldier Recruiter List; what this means

  • The US Child Soldiers Prevention Act (CSPA) requires the publication in the annual Trafficking in Persons (TIP) report a list of foreign governments that have recruited or used child soldiers during the previous year
  • The United States of America has added Pakistan and 14 other countries to the list that identifies foreign governments having government-supported armed groups that recruit or use child soldiers.
  • Child Soldier Recruiter designation could result in restrictions on certain security assistance and commercial licensing of military equipment.
  • Pakistan, Turkey, Afghanistan, Myanmar, Democratic Republic of the Congo, Iran, Iraq, Libya, Mali, Nigeria, Somalia, South Sudan, Syria, Venezuela and Yemen are added to the list.

Convention on the Rights of the Child (CRC)

  • The CRC was adopted in 1989 and entered into force on September 2, 1990.
  • Currently, 193 countries have ratified the CRC including India. Hence statement (2) is correct.
  • The CRC requires state parties to “take all feasible measures” to ensure that children under 18 are not engaged in direct hostilities.
  • It further prohibits the state parties from recruiting children under 15 into the armed forcesHence statement (1) is correct.
  • In 2000, the UN Committee on the Rights of the Child adopted the Optional Protocol to the Convention on the Rights of the Child on the involvement of children in armed conflict.
  • While the CRC requires states to refrain from using children under 15 in direct hostilities, the Optional Protocol raises this age to 18.
  • Valuable and necessary tools to establish international norms as they raise awareness regarding human rights abuses.
  • However, these treaties are limited in scope and nature, and they tend to be idealistic rather than practicable.
  • The UN’s mechanisms only bind state parties that ratify the treaties. It has no authority over countries that are not parties to the convention or are non-state entities, such as rebel militias recruiting child soldiers.
  • It also relies on the signatories themselves to implement its doctrines and prevent human rights abuses around the world.
  • Therefore, most of the responsibility in preventing such abuses lies with the individual countries themselves.
  • While the UN has no police power mechanism to enforce its decisions.
  • Therefore, the CRC and its Optional Protocol are limited by the signatories’ willingness to comply. Somalia, for example, is a signatory but it hasn’t ratified the convention.

Source: https://indianexpress.com/article/explained/explained-us-has-put-pakistan-turkey-on-child-soldier-recruiter-list-what-does-it-mean-7387555/

With respect to Indus Water Treaty, consider the following statements:

  • It is a water-distribution treaty between India and Pakistan brokered by the World Bank.
    • Under this treaty, all the waters of Ravi, Sutlej and Beas rivers were allocated to India for exclusive use.
    • India has been given the right to generate hydroelectricity through the run of the river projects on the Indus, Jhelum, and Chenab rivers.

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: India to divert excess waters under Indus treaty to irrigate own land

  • India is working on exercising its rights to stop excess water flowing to Pakistan under the Indus Waters Treaty of 1960 to irrigate its own lands
  • The move to harvest excess water comes against the backdrop of India working on a plan to divert the waters of Ujh, which is one of the main tributaries of the Ravi river that flows into Pakistan.
  • This is also of strategic importance to India, given that control over river water flow acts as a force multiplier during times of aggression.
  • India’s plans to fully utilize its share of water under the treaty assumes strategic importance against the backdrop of China developing the controversial China-Pakistan Economic Corridor in the region.

About Indus Waters Treaty

  • The Indus Waters Treaty is a water-distribution treaty between India and Pakistan, brokered by the World Bank signed in Karachi in 1960Hence statement (1) is correct
  • According to this agreement, control over the water flowing in three “eastern” rivers of India — the Beas, the Ravi and the Sutlej was given to India. Hence statement (2) is correct.
  • The water of the first three rivers and their tributaries that India gets is its absolute Right. If it construct irrigation projects on those waters and tap their potential, Pakistan can’t raise a question, which they try to do, but that’s illegal
  • The control over the water flowing in three “western” rivers of India — the Indus, the Chenab and the Jhelum was given to Pakistan
  • The treaty allowed India to use western rivers water for limited irrigation use and unrestricted use for power generation, domestic, industrial and non-consumptive uses such as navigation, floating of property, fish culture, etc. while laying down precise regulations for India to build projects
  • India has also been given the right to generate hydroelectricity through the run of the river (RoR) projects on the Western Rivers which, subject to specific criteria for design and operation, is Hence statement (3) is correct.

Source: https://www.livemint.com/news/india/india-to-divert-excess-waters-under-indus-treaty-to-irrigate-own-land-11625424591964.html

Consider the following statements regarding Tidal Wave:

  • It is a regularly recurring shallow water wave caused by the gravitational interactions between the Sun, Moon, and Earth.
    • The moon’s gravitational pull to a great extent is a cause for the occurrence of tides.

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: How India can face the tidal wave of marine plastic

  • The problem of marine plastic pollution can — and must — be tackled from various perspectives. This article discusses some of them
  • The Central Pollution Control Board’s (CPCB) Annual Report on Implementing the Plastic Garbage Rules, 2016, is the only regular estimate of the quantum of plastic waste generated in India.

About Tidal Wave

  • The periodical rise and fall of the sea level, once or twice a day, mainly due to the attraction of the sun and the moon, is called a tide. Hence statement (1) is correct.
  • Movement of water caused by meteorological effects (winds and atmospheric pressure changes) are called surges (storm surge during cyclones).
  • The study of tides is very complex, spatially and temporally, as it has great variations in frequency, magnitude and height.
  • The moon’s gravitational pull to a great extent and to a lesser extent the sun’s gravitational pull, are the major causes for the occurrence of tidesHence statement (2) is correct.
  • Another factor is centrifugal force which acts opposite to gravitational pull of earth.
  • Tides occur due to a balance between all these forces.
  • The ‘tide-generating’ force is the difference between these two forces; i.e. the gravitational attraction of the moon and the centrifugal force.

Source: https://www.downtoearth.org.in/blog/pollution/how-india-can-face-the-tidal-wave-of-marine-plastic-77819

Consider the following statements regarding Spinner Dolphins:

 

They are found in off-shore tropical waters around the world.

It is categorized as Critically Endangered on the IUCN Red List.

It is included in Schedule I of the Wild Life (Protection) Act, 1972.

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

a) 1 only

b) 2 and 3 only

c) 1 and 3 only

d) 1, 2 and 3

Answer: (c) 1 and 3 only

Explanation:

In NEWS: Carcass of Spinner dolphin found in Odisha

  • The recovery of the carcass has taken the number of dead marine animals in Odisha in the last five months to six
  • The carcass of a four-feet-long male Spinner dolphin (Stenella longirostris) was washed ashore in Odisha’s port town of Paradip within the Bhitarkanika National Park June 30, 2021, taking the number of marine animal deaths in the state within five months to six.
  • The carcass was spotted by some fishermen, who informed forest officials. The reason behind the death is yet to be ascertained. Large numbers of people in the area gathered to have a look at the carcass of the dolphin.

About Spinner Dolphins

  • They are small cetaceans with a slim build and member of the family Delphinidae of toothed whales.
  • This species has an elongated rostrum and a triangular or sub-triangular dorsal fin.
  • They are found in off-shore tropical waters around the worldHence statement (1) is correct.
  • It is famous for its acrobatic displays in which it spins along its longitudinal axis as it leaps through the air. 
  • It is sometimes referred to as the long-snouted dolphin to distinguish it from the similar Clymene dolphin, which is often called the short-snouted spinner dolphin. 
  • The species was described by John Gray in 1828. 
  • It is included in Schedule I of the Wild Life (Protection) Act, 1972 and in Appendix I of the Convention on International Trade in Endangered Species and in Appendix II of the Convention on Migratory Species.  Hence statement (3) is correct.
  • It is categorized as ‘Data deficient’ on the IUCN Red ListHence statement (2) is incorrect.
  • Though the species primarily inhabits coastal waters, islands, and banks, in the eastern tropical Pacific, they live far from shore.

Source: https://www.downtoearth.org.in/news/wildlife-biodiversity/carcass-of-spinner-dolphin-found-in-odisha-77720

Consider the following statements regarding Grand Ethiopian Renaissance Dam:

  • It is a gravity dam on the White Nile River in Ethiopia.
    • It will be the largest hydroelectric power plant in Africa when completed.

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: Ethiopia resumes filling disputed dam

  • Ethiopia has started the second phase of filling a mega-dam’s reservoir on the upper Blue Nile, said Egypt and Sudan, raising tensions Tuesday ahead of an upcoming UN Security Council meeting on the issue
  • Both Cairo and Khartoum said they had been notified by Addis Ababa that the second phase of filling had begun at the Grand Ethiopian Renaissance Dam.
  • The huge dam, set to be Africa’s largest hydroelectric project when completed, has sparked an almost decade-long diplomatic stand-off between Addis Ababa and downstream nations Egypt and Sudan.
  • Ethiopia says the project is essential to its development, but Cairo and Khartoum fear it could restrict their citizens’ water access.
  • Both governments have been pushing Addis Ababa to ink a binding deal over the filling and operation of the dam, and have urged the UN Security Council to take up the matter.

About Grand Ethiopian Renaissance Dam

  • GERD is a gravity dam on the Blue Nile River in Ethiopia that has been under construction since 2011. Hence statement (1) is correct.
  • At 6.45 gigawatts, the dam will be the largest hydroelectric power plant in Africa when completed, as well as the seventh-largest in the worldHence statement (2) is correct.
  • Once completed, the reservoir could take anywhere between 5 and 15 years to fill with water, depending on hydrologic conditions during the filling period and agreements reached between Ethiopia, Sudan, and Egypt.

Source: https://www.thehindu.com/news/international/ethiopia-resumes-filling-disputed-dam/article35178685.ece

The Montague-Chelmsford Proposals were related to:

a) social reforms

b) educational reforms

c) reforms in police administration

d) constitutional reforms

Answer: (d) constitutional reforms

Explanation:

On 20th August, 1917 Lord Montague, the Secretary of State for India, made the following declaration in British Parliament: “ The Policy of His Majesty’s government… is that of increasing association of Indians in every branch of administration, and the gradual development of self-governing institutions, with a view to the progressive realization of responsible government in India as an integral part of the British empire.

  • Importance of Montagu’s Statement- From now onwards, the demand by nationalists for self-government or Home Rule could not be termed as seditious since attainment of self-government for Indians now became a government policy, unlike Morley’s statement in 1909 that the reforms were not intended to give self-government to India. Hence option (d) is correct