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Daily Prelims Test – 10_November 2020

Consider the following statements regarding Biodiversity heritage sites

1.Biodiversity heritage sites are unique and fragile ecosystems that can be marine ecosystems, coastal and inland waters, or terrestrial areas.

2.Under Biological Diversity Act, 2002 the State Government in consultation with local bodies may notify areas of biodiversity importance as Biodiversity Heritage Sites.

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

  1. 1 only
  2. 2 only
  3. Both 1 and 2
  4. Neither 1 nor 2

Answer: (c) Both 1 and 2

Explanation:

In NEWS: Four more biodiversity heritage sites for Karnataka

  • The Karnataka Biodiversity Board has decided to declare four more areas in the State as biodiversity heritage sites.
  • The board, at a meeting last month, passed a resolution to declare Antaragange Betta in Kolar; Aadi Narayana Swamy Betta in Chickballapur; Mahima Ranga Betta in Nelamangala, Bengaluru; and the Urumbi area on the Kumaradhara river basin in Dakshina Kannada as biodiversity heritage sites.

About Biodiversity Heritage Sites:

  • Biodiversity heritage sites are considered unique and fragile ecosystems that can be marine ecosystems, coastal and inland waters, or terrestrial areas. Hence statement 1 is correct
  • Under Section-37 of Biological Diversity Act, 2002 the State Government in consultation with local bodies may notify areas of biodiversity importance as Biodiversity Heritage Sites. Hence statement 2 is correct
  • Purpose of declaring BHS is to enhance the quality of life of the local communities through conservation of such sites.
  • The ‘Biodiversity Heritage Sites’ are unique ecosystems having rich biodiversity comprising of any one or more of the following components:
  • Richness of wild as well as domesticated species or intra-specific categories.
  • High endemism.
  • Presence of rare and threatened species, keystone species, species of evolutionary significance.
  • Wild ancestors of domestic/cultivated species or their varieties.
  • Past pre-eminence of biological components represented by fossil beds and having significant cultural, ethical or aesthetic values and are important for the maintenance of cultural diversity, with or without a long history of human association with them.

Source: https://www.thehindu.com/news/cities/Mangalore/four-more-biodiversity-heritage-sites-for-karnataka/article33049144.ece


Consider the following statements regarding Non-bank financial companies

1.It is a company registered under the Companies Act, 1956.

2.They cannot issue cheques drawn on itself.

3.Deposit insurance facility of Deposit Insurance and Credit Guarantee Corporation is available to depositors of NBFC

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

  1. 1 and 2 only
  2. 2 and 3 only
  3. 1 and 3 only
  4. 1,2 and 3

Answer: (a) 1 and 2 only

Explanation:

In NEWS: NBFCs with high systemic risks need more regulation: RBI DG

  • Asserting that there was a need to recalibrate regulations for non-banking financial companies (NBFCs)
  • NBFCs with significant externalities and which contribute substantially to systemic risks must be identified and subjected to a higher degree of regulation.
  • NBFCs currently enjoyed a great degree of regulatory arbitrage vis-a-vis banks, he said these entities could contribute to a build-up of systemic risks because of such arbitrage and hence there was a need to recalibrate the regulations
  • The share of NBFC-MFIs (Non-bank financial companies- microfinance institutions) in the overall microfinance sector had come down to a little more than 30% as several large MFIs had converted into Small Finance Banks.

About Non-bank financial companies (NBFCs):

  • NBFCs are financial institutions that provide banking services without meeting the legal definition of a bank, i.e. one that does not hold a banking license.
  • It engaged in the business of loans and advances, acquisition of shares/stocks/bonds/debentures/securities issued by Government or local authority or other marketable securities of a like nature.
  • An NBFC is a company registered under the Companies Act, 1956. Hence statement 1 is correct
  • These institutions typically are restricted from taking deposits from the public depending on the jurisdiction.
  • A company which does not have financial assets more than 50% of its total assets and does not derive at least 50% of its gross income from such assets is not an NBFC.

Limitations of the NBFCs:

  • All NBFCs are not entitled to accept public deposits.
  • Only those NBFCs to which the Bank had given a specific authorization and have an investment grade rating are allowed to accept/ hold public deposits to a limit of 1.5 times of its Net Owned Funds.
  • NBFCs do not form part of the payment and settlement system and cannot issue cheques drawn on itself. Hence statement 2 is correct
  • Deposit insurance facility of Deposit Insurance and Credit Guarantee Corporationis not available to depositors of NBFCs, unlike in case of banks. Hence statement 3 is incorrect

Source: https://www.thehindu.com/business/Economy/nbfcs-with-high-systemic-risks-need-more-regulation-rbi-dg/article33043492.ece


Consider the following statements regarding Exoplanet

1.It is a planet outside the Solar System

2.They are very easy to see directly with telescopes

3.The closest exoplanet to the sun is named Proxima Centauri b

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

  1. 1 and 2 only
  2. 2 and 3 only
  3. 1 and 3 only
  4. 1,2 and 3

Answer: (c) 1 and 3 only

Explanation:

In NEWS: Scientists find new exoplanet-star pair having resemblance to Sun-Earth system

  • The star Kepler-160and the planet KOI-456 have been discovered as a new exoplanet-star pair.
  • These both are quite similar to the Sun and the Earth, more than any other planets previously discovered which makes them more conducive to life.
  • The discovery is made by the Max Planck Institute for Solar System Research (MPS)
  • The Kepler-160 has at least three planets in its orbit, one of which is the non-transiting planet Kepler-160 d.
  • The super-Earth-sized transiting planet candidate KOI-456.04 in the habitable zone of this system, which could be the fourth planet.
  • KOI-456.04 is orbiting the Kepler-160 at a distance similar to that of the earth from the sun.
  • It takes approximately 378 days to complete one orbit.
  • The planet is approximately 3,000 light-years away from Earth.
  • Kepler 160’s composition shows that it is more similar to the sun reducing the chances of infrared radiation making it more potentially habitable.

About Exoplanet

  • All of the planets in our solar system orbit around the Sun. Planets that orbit around other stars are called exoplanets. Hence statement 1 is correct
  • Exoplanets are very hard to see directly with telescopes. They are hidden by the bright glare of the stars they orbit. Hence statement 2 is incorrect
  • So, astronomers use other ways to detect and study these distant planets. They search for exoplanets by looking at the effects these planets have on the stars they orbit.
  • The first two exoplanets orbiting a pulsar was found in 1992.
  • The closest exoplanet is named Proxima Centauri b. It is a planet orbiting the closest star to the Sun, named Proxima Centauri. Hence statement 3 is correct

Source: https://www.hindustantimes.com/world-news/scientists-find-new-exoplanet-star-pair-having-resemblance-to-sun-earth-system/story-TzB5jbgHBGwpSxKblN7PlL.html


Advisory Committee on Administrative and Budgetary Questions’ is a subsidiary organ of the:

1.World Bank

2.World Economic Forum

3.NITI Aayog

4.United Nation

Answer: (d) United Nation

Explanation:

In NEWS: Indian diplomat Vidisha Maitra elected to U.N. Advisory Committee on Administrative and Budgetary Questions

  • In a significant victory for India at the United Nations, Indian diplomat Vidisha Maitra was elected to the N. Advisory Committee on Administrative and Budgetary Questions (ACABQ), a subsidiary organ of the General Assembly. Hence option (d) is correct

About Advisory Committee on Administrative and Budgetary Questions

  • The 193-member General Assembly appoints members of the Advisory Committee.
  • The Advisory Committee is an expert Committee of sixteen Members elected by the General Assembly for a period of three years, on the basis of a broad geographical representation. Members serve in a personal capacity and not as representatives of Member States. The Committee holds three sessions a year with total meeting time between nine and ten months per year. The Chairman and Vice-Chairman of the Committee are elected by the Members of the Advisory Committee.
  • ACABQ ensures that fund contributions to the U.N. system are put to good effect and that mandates are properly funded.

Source: https://www.thehindu.com/news/national/indian-diplomat-elected-to-un-advisory-committee-on-administrative-and-budgetary-questions/article33047693.ece


With reference to the Finance Commission of India, Which of the following statement is incorrect?

1.Finance Commission is a constitutional body under Article 280 created every five years to recommend the transfer of financial resources from the Centre to the States.

2.The Commission also decides the principles on which grants-in-aid will be given to the States.

3.The President of India appoints the Finance Commissioner

4.Recently, the Fourteenth Commission has been constituted

Answer: d) Recently, the Fourteenth Commission has been constituted

Explanation:

In NEWS: 15th Finance Commission submits its report to President

  • Finance Commission is a constitutional body under Article 280 created every five years to recommend the transfer of financial resources from the Centre to the States.
  • The Commission also decides the principles on which grants-in-aid will be given to the States.
  • The President of India appoints the Finance Commissioner
  • Recently, the 15th Commission has been constituted under the chairmanship of NK Singh. Hence option (d) is incorrect statement.

Source: https://www.thehindu.com/business/15th-finance-commission-submits-its-report-to-president/article33057464.ece


Consider the following statements regarding Income Tax Appellate Tribunal

1.It is an important statutory body in the field of direct taxes and its orders are accepted as final, on findings of fact.

2.ITAT was the first Tribunal to be created in the country.

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

  1. 1 only
  2. 2 only
  3. Both 1 and 2
  4. Neither 1 nor 2

Answer: (c) Both 1 and 2

Explanation:

In NEWS: Modi to inaugurate office-cum-residential complex of I-T Appellate Tribunal

  • Income Tax Appellate Tribunal, also known as ITAT, is an important statutory body in the field of direct taxes and its orders are accepted as final, on findings of fact.
  • It is presently headed by Mr. Justice (Retd) P.P. Bhatt, formerly Judge of the High Court of Jharkhand and High Court of Gujarat.
  • ITAT was the first Tribunal to be created on 25th January, 1941 and is also known as ‘Mother Tribunal’. Starting with three benches in the year 1941, at Delhi, Bombay and Calcutta it has now grown to 63 Benches and two circuit benches spread across thirty cities of India.
  • The Cuttack Bench of the ITAT was created and started functioning from 23rd May, 1970. The jurisdiction of Cuttack Bench extends to the whole of Odisha.
  • Prime Minister Narendra Modi will inaugurate the state-of-the-art office-cum-residential complex of Income Tax Appellate Tribunal (ITAT) at Cuttack on 11th November, 2020.

Source: https://www.business-standard.com/article/current-affairs/modi-to-inaugurate-office-cum-residential-complex-of-i-t-appellate-tribunal-120110901728_1.html


Consider the following statements regarding Indian Mobile Congress

1.It is a prestigious event jointly organized by the Department of Telecommunications and Cellular Operators Association of India.

2.The theme of this event is “Inclusive Innovation – Smart I Secure I Sustainable”.

3.IMC is considered the largest Digital Technology Forum in Asia for bringing together the industry, Government, academia, and other ecosystem players to discuss the latest industry technology trends around major themes such as SG, Artificial Intelligence (Al), Internet of things (loT) etc.

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

  1. 1 and 3 only
  2. 2 and 3 only
  3. 1 and 2 only
  4. 1, 2 and 3

Answer: (d) 1, 2 and 3

Explanation:

In NEWS: Shri Sanjay Dhotre announces the fourth edition of India Mobile Congress 2020 through a video message

  • This prestigious event, jointly organized by the Department of Telecommunications (DoT) and Cellular Operators Association of India (COAT), will see 50+ participating countries, 110 + Global Speakers, Start-ups over the three day programme. Hence statement 1 is correct.
  • This year IMC’s theme is going to be – “Inclusive Innovation – Smart I Secure I Sustainable”. Hence statement 2 is correct.
  • IMC is considered the largest Digital Technology Forum in Asia for bringing together the industry, Government, academia, and other ecosystem players to discuss the latest industry technology trends around major themes such as SG, Artificial Intelligence (Al), Internet of things (loT) etc. hence statement 3 is correct.
  • Minister of Information Technology announced the fourth edition of the India Mobile Congress (IMC) 2020, through a video message. The IMC 2020 is scheduled for 8th -10th December, and will be held virtually this year given the ongoing pandemic.

Source: https://pib.gov.in/PressReleaseIframePage.aspx?PRID=1671440


With reference to Anti-satellite Missile (A-SAT), consider the following statements

1.It is a fast-moving Indian orbiting target satellite in Low Earth Orbit (LEO) was neutralized with pinpoint accuracy.

‘2.Mission Shakti’ was country’s first ever Anti-Satellite (ASAT) Missile Test.

3.The successful conduct of Mission Shakti made India the second nation in the world with the capability to defend its assets in outer space.

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

  1. 1, 2 and 3
  2. 2 and 3 only
  3. 1 and 3 only
  4. 1 and 2 only

Answer: (d) 1 and 2 only

Explanation:

In NEWS: Raksha Mantri Shri Rajnath Singh Unveils A-Sat Missile Model in DRDO Bhawan

  • ‘Mission Shakti’; It is a fast-moving Indian orbiting target satellite in Low Earth Orbit (LEO) was neutralised with pinpoint accuracy. Hence statement 1 is correct.
  • It was the country’s first ever Anti-Satellite (ASAT) Missile Test successfully conducted on 27th March 2019 from Dr AP J Abdul Kalam Island in Odisha, where a fast-moving Indian orbiting target satellite in Low Earth Orbit (LEO) was neutralised with pinpoint accuracy. Hence statement 2 is correct.
  • This was a highly complex mission, conducted at extremely high speed with remarkable precision.
  • The successful conduct of Mission Shakti made India the fourth nation in the world with the capability to defend its assets in outer space. Hence statement 3 is correct.
  • A model of Anti Satellite (A-SAT) Missile installed inside the DRDO Bhawan premises was unveiled today by Raksha Mantri Rajnath Singh.

Source: https://pib.gov.in/PressReleasePage.aspx?PRID=1671442


With reference to the Bureau of Energy Efficiency (BEE), consider the following statements

1.BEE is a constitutional body under the Ministry of Power

2.BEE assists in developing policies and strategies with the primary objective of reducing the energy intensity of the Indian economy.

Select the incorrect answer using the code given below:

  • 1 only
  • 2 only
  • Both 1 and 2
  • Neither 1 nor 2

Answer: (a) 1 only

Explanation:

In News: Ministry of Power mandates all DISCOMs to comply Energy Conservation (EC) Act , 2001

  • Bureau of Energy Efficiency (BEE) is a statutory body under the Ministry of Power, Government of India. Hence statement 1 is incorrect
  • It assists in developing policies and strategies with the primary objective of reducing the energy intensity of the Indian economy. Hence statement 2 is correct.
  • The Ministry of Power, Government of India issued a notification to cover all the Electricity Distribution Companies (DISCOMs) under the preview of the Energy Conservation (EC) Act, 2001.

Source: https://pib.gov.in/PressReleasePage.aspx?PRID=1671473


In the context of India, which of the following factors is/are contributor/ contributors to reducing the risk of a currency crisis?

1.The foreign currency earnings of India’s IT sector

2.Increasing the government expenditure

3.Remittances from Indians abroad

Select the correct answer using the code given below.

  • 1 only
  • 1 and 3 only
  • 2 only
  • 1, 2 and 3

Answer: (b) 1 and 3 only

Explanation:

  • Currency crisis is brought on by a decline in the value of a country’s currency. This decline in value negatively affects an economy by creating instabilities in exchange rates, meaning that one unit of a certain currency no longer buys as much as it used to in another currency.
  • A substantial amount of foreign exchange reserves can help to cushion against any risks of currency crisis.
  • The foreign current earnings of India’s IT sector and remittances from abroad would lead more inflow of foreign currencies in the economy and boost theforeign exchange reserves. Hence, Statements 1 and 3 are correct.
  • Statement 2 is not correct as increasing the government expenditure is not related to change in foreign exchange reserves or any currency fluctuations