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Daily Prelims Test – 17_January 2021

Consider the following Statements regarding Special Marriages Act, 1954 (SMA)

It is the legislation that is used to register both the inter-religious and inter-caste marriages in India.

It allows two individuals to solemnise their marriage through a civil contract.

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: Private space: On public notices under Special Marriage Act

  • The Allahabad High Court ruling that people marrying under the Special Marriage Act, 1954, can choose not to publicise their union with a notice 30 days in advance may not exactly be a judicial pushback against problematic anti-conversion laws enacted by several BJP-ruled States
  • The HC ruling came on the plea of a Muslim woman who converted to Hinduism for marriage as the couple saw the notice period under the Special Marriage Act as an invasion of their privacy.
  • Under Section 5 of the Act, which enables inter-faith marriages, the couple has to give notice to the Marriage Officer; and under Sections 6 and 7, the officer has to publicise the notice and call for objections.
  • The public notice ended up giving vigilante groups, families hostile to interfaith and inter-caste unions, and the social prejudice of legal bureaucracy disproportionate powers to police young couples.
  • As a result, many preferred to convert and marry under personal laws, rather than expose themselves to harassment.
  • The court said that mandatorily publishing a notice of the intended marriage and calling for objections violates the right to privacy. If a couple gives it in writing that they do not want the notice publicised, the Marriage Officer can solemnise the marriage. Laws should not invade liberty and privacy.
  • The freedom to choose for marriage without interference from state and non-state actors should be guaranteed.
  • The Law Commission of India report in 2012 had made a similar recommendation to “keep a check on the high-handed and unwarranted interference by caste assemblies in sagotra, inter-caste or inter-religious marriages”.
  • Relevant Supreme Court judgments: SC rulings recognize the right to privacy as a fundamental right (Puttaswamy v Union of India), the right to choose one’s partner (Hadiya case), Aadhaar ruling, 2017 and the ruling that decriminalized homosexuality.

About Special Marriages Act, 1954 (SMA)

  • It is the legislation that is used to register inter-religious and inter-caste marriages in India.
  • This Act includes Hindus, Muslims, Christians, Sikhs, Jains, and Buddhists marriagesHence statement 1 is correct
  • It allows two individuals to solemnise their marriage through a civil contract. Hence statement 2 is correct
  • There are no religious formalities that need to be carried out under the Act.
  • The fundamental requirement under this Act for a valid marriage is the consent of both parties to the marriage.
  • If both parties to the marriage are willing to marry each other, that’s enough.
  • No barrier: Caste, religion, race, etc. can’t act as a barrier to their union here.
  • For marriage under this Act, the parties must file with the district’s Marriage Registrar a notice stating their intention to marry each other in which at least one of the parties to the marriage has lived for at least 30 days prior to the date on which such notice is filed.
  • After the expiry of 30 days from the date that such notice was published, the marriage is then said to be solemnized.
  • But if any person related to the parties objects to this marriage and the registrar finds that it is a reasonable cause of objection, on such grounds he can cancel the marriage.

Source: https://www.thehindu.com/opinion/editorial/private-space-the-hindu-editorial-on-allahabad-high-court-ruling-that-public-notices-under-special-marriage-act-are-optional/article33583221.ece


Consider the following Statements regarding Open Skies Treaty

It is an agreement that allows countries to monitor signatories’ arms development by conducting surveillance flights over each other’s territories.

India is a member of this treaty

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: (a) 1 only

Explanation:

In NEWS: Russia withdraws from Open Skies Treaty after U.S. departure

  • Russia announced it was pulling out of the Open Skies treaty. The United States left the Open Skies arms control and verification treaty in November, accusing Russia of violating it.
  • Russia has raised concerns that despite leaving the treaty Washington could potentially retain access to overflight intelligence gathered by allies who remain members in the treaty.

About Open Skies Treaty

  • The idea behind the OST was first proposed in the early years of the Cold War by the former U.S. President Dwight Eisenhower.
  • It came to fruition decades later and was signed in 1992, during the George H.W. Bush presidency and after the Soviet Union had collapsed.
  • The primary objective of the Open Skies Treaty is to reduce the risk of conflict by providing participants with the ability to collect information about the military forces and activities of others in the treaty.
  • In particular, “information derived from Open Skies flights can contribute to participating states’ national efforts to address a range of military and civil issues.
  • It is an agreement that allows countries to monitor signatories’ arms development by conducting surveillance flights over each other’s territoriesHence statement 1 is correct
  • The treaty allows its 34 signatories to conduct unarmed reconnaissance flights over the territory of treaty countries.
  • Between 2002 and 2016, the U.S. flew 196 flights over Russia (in addition to having imagery from other countries) compared to the 71 flights flown by Russia.
  • India is not a member of this treatyHence statement 2 is incorrect

Source: https://www.thehindu.com/news/international/russia-withdraws-from-open-skies-treaty-after-us-departure/article33580887.ece


Kalapani territory is a border between the:

1.Himachal Pradesh and china

2.Uttarakhand and Nepal

3.Sikkim and Bhutan

4.Nagaland and Myanmar

Answer: (b) Uttarakhand and Nepal

Explanation:

In NEWS: Nepal once again raises Kalapani Boundary Issue

  • Nepal has raised the Kalapani boundary dispute with India during the Joint Commission meeting of the Foreign Ministers.
  • Nepal’s western boundary with India was marked out in the Treaty of Sugauli between the East India Company and Nepal in 1816. Hence option (b) is correct
  • Nepali authorities claim that people living in the low-density area were included in the Census of Nepal until 58 years ago.
  • The Treaty of Sugauli concluded between British India and the Kingdom of Nepal in the year 1816, maps the Makhali River as the western boundary with India.
  • But different British maps showed the source of the tributary at different places which were mainly due to underdeveloped and less-defined surveying techniques used at that time.
  • However, the river has many tributaries that meet at Kalapani. For this reason, India claims that the river begins at Kalapani but Nepal says that it begins from Lipu Lekh pass, which is the source of most of its tributaries.
  • While the Nepal government and political parties have protested, India has said the new map does not revise the existing boundary with Nepal.
  • India claims that the river begins at Kalapani but Nepal says that it begins from Lipu Lekh pass, which is the source of most of its tributaries.
  • The Lipu Lekh pass serves strategic importance for India as a key point to monitor Chinese troop movement.
  • The link road via Lipulekh Himalayan Pass is also considered one of the shortest and most feasible trade routes between India and China.
  • The Nepalese reaction would probably have triggered in response to Chinese assertion.

Source: https://www.thehindu.com/news/national/nepal-raises-boundary-issue-with-india-in-joint-commission-meeting/article33582802.ece


SAKSHAM is a month-long mass awareness campaign about green and clean energy launched by the

Ministry of petroleum and natural gas

Ministry of New and Renewable Energy

Ministry of Environment, Forest and Climate Change

Ministry of Agriculture and Farmers’ Welfare

Answer: (a) Ministry of petroleum and natural gas

Explanation:

In NEWS: Petroleum & Natural Gas Ministry launches SAKSHAM campaign to spread awareness about green energy

  • The Petroleum and Natural Gas Ministry today launched month-long mass awareness campaign ‘SAKSHAM’ to spread awareness about green and clean energy. The pan-India campaign will focus on adoption of cleaner fuels. Hence option (a) is correct
  • The campaign will spread awareness about seven key drivers that Prime Minister Narendra Modi had recently mentioned. They include moving towards a gas-based economy, cleaner use of fossil fuels, greater reliance on domestic sources to drive bio-fuels and increased use of electric vehicles.
  • It is a one-month long people centric fuel conservation campaign. The campaign is to be launched by the Petroleum Conservation Research Association (PCRA)

Source: http://newsonair.com/Main-News-Details.aspx?id=408071#:~:text=The%20Petroleum%20and%20Natural%20Gas,the%20campaign%20in%20New%20Delhi.


Consider the following statements regarding SWITCH UAV

It is an indigenous system built to cater to the most demanding surveillance operations of the Indian forces.

This fixed-wing vertical take-off and landing UAV can be deployed at high altitudes and under harsh environments for day and night surveillance

Select the correct answer using the code given below:

  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: Army inks $20 mn deal with ideaForge for UAV

  • SWITCH UAV is an indigenous system built to cater to the most demanding surveillance operations of the Indian forces. Hence statement 1 is correct
  • This fixed-wing vertical take-off and landing UAV can be deployed at high altitudes and under harsh environments for day and night surveillance, ideaForge said in a statement. Hence statement 2 is correct
  • The Indian Army has signed a $20-million contract with ideaForge, a player in unmanned aerial vehicle (UAV) technology, to procure undisclosed quantities of a high-altitude variant of SWITCH UAV.

Source: https://www.thehindu.com/business/Industry/army-inks-20-mn-deal-with-ideaforge-for-uav/article33583294.ece


With reference to the Cultural History of India, Kalariyapattu defines

A system which consists of the worship of five deities

It is an essential feature in Temple Architecture

It is a Shaivite Hindu religious tradition in India

It is an ancient martial art and a living tradition in kerala

Answer: d) It is an ancient martial art and a living tradition in kerala

Explanation:

In NEWS: Kalaripayattu academy braces for action

  • Kalaripayattu, considered the oldest surviving martial art of the country, with a legacy of more than 3,000 years, is set to see a surge in popularity with the establishment of an academy in the Kerala capital. Hence option (d) is the correct answer
  • Kalaripayattu also known as Kalari, is an Indian martial art and fighting style that originated in Kerala.
  • It is considered to be among the oldest martial arts still in existence, with its origin dating back to at least the 3rd century BC.
  • Kalaripayattu includes strikes, kicks, grappling, preset forms, weaponry and healing methods. Practitioners of Kalaripayattu also possess intricate knowledge of pressure points on the human body and healing techniques that incorporate the knowledge of Ayurveda and Yoga.
  • Unlike other parts of India, warriors in Kerala belonged to all castes. Women in Keralite society also underwent training in Kalaripayattu, and still do so to this day.

Source: https://www.thehindu.com/news/cities/Thiruvananthapuram/kalaripayattu-academy-braces-for-action/article33539155.ece


Consider the following statements

Kambala is an annual buffalo race held in the southwestern Indian state of Karnataka.

Maramadi, is an agricultural sport conducted in Kakkoor Kaalayayal, Kerala.

Jallikattu is considered a traditional way for the peasant community to preserve their pure-breed native bulls in tamilnadu

Select the correct answer using the code given below

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

Answer: d) 1, 2 and 3

Explanation:

In NEWS: Jallikattu: pride & politics

  • The bull-taming sport is popular in Madurai, Tiruchirappalli, Theni, Pudukkottai and Dindigul districts — known as the Jallikattu belt.
  • Jallikattu is celebrated in the second week of January, during the Tamil harvest festival, Pongal.
  • A tradition over 2,000 years old, Jallikattu is a competitive sport as well as an event to honour bull owners who rear them for mating. It is a violent sport in which contestants try to tame a bull for a prize; if they fail, the bull owner wins the prize.
  • Jallikattu is considered a traditional way for the peasant community to preserve their pure-breed native bulls. Kangayam, Pulikulam, Umbalachery, Bargur and Malai Maadu are among the popular native cattle breeds used for Jallikattu.hence statement 3 is correct
  • Kambala is an annual buffalo race held in the southwestern Indian state of Karnataka. Hence statement 1 is correct.
  • Maramadi, is an agricultural sport conducted in Kakkoor Kaalayayal, Kerala.hence statement 2 is correct.

Source:

https://indianexpress.com/article/explained/jallikattu-tamil-nadu-assembly-election-bjp-congress-7148150/

The DZukou valley is famous for its wide range of flowers in every season but the most famous one is the Dzüko Lily and it is found only in this valley. The valley is located in the border of

Manipur and Assam

Assam and Meghalaya

Manipur and Nagaland

Nagaland and Assam

Answer: c) Manipur and Nagaland

Explanation:

In NEWS: Dzukou Valley wildfire doused

  • The Dzüko Valley is located at the borders of the states of Nagaland and Manipur.
  • It is situated at an altitude of 2452 m above sea level.
  • The valley is famous for its wide range of flowers in every season but the most famous one is the Dzüko Lily and it is found only in this valley. Hence option (c) is the correct answer.
  • The wildfire at Dzukou Valley straddling the Manipur-Nagaland border has been doused after it raged for two weeks.

Source https://www.thehindu.com/news/national/other-states/dzukou-valley-wildfire-doused/article33553588.ece


Consider the following statements

Public procurement refers to the purchase of goods and services by the public sector or the government, accounting for an average 15% of GDP globally.

In India, government procurement is estimated to constitute about 30% of GDP with the central government accounting for a major chunk.

Recently, a model tender document was drafted for public procurement by all central government departments, in a bid to standardize the language and clauses included, and avoid contractual disputes.

Select the correct answer using the code given below.

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

Answer: d) 1, 2 and 3

Explanation:

In News: Finance Ministry drafts model tender to ease purchases

  • Public procurement refers to the purchase of goods and services by the public sector or the government, accounting for an average 15% of GDP globally. Hence statement 1 is correct
  • In India, government procurement is estimated to constitute about 30% of GDP with the central government accounting for a major chunk. Hence statement 2 is correct
  • There is no standardised nomenclature in public procurement in India and a mix of American, European and Indian nomenclature has become common. E.g. participants in the Tender are called tenderers and bidders.
  • The standard bidding document developed now, seeks to ease out this duality by mooting that
  • the ‘Tender’ should refer to the tender document and process, while the term ‘Bid’ shall refer to the bidders’ pitches;
  • ‘Bidder’ is to be used instead of ‘Tenderer’ to refer to potential suppliers and the usage ‘Bid document’ be done away with, as per the proposed model.
  • The Finance Ministry (Expenditure Department) has drafted a model tender document for public procurement by all central government departments, in a bid to standardise the language and clauses included, and avoid contractual disputes. Hence statement 3 is correct.

Source: https://www.thehindu.com/business/Economy/finance-ministry-drafts-model-tender-to-ease-purchases/article33539099.ec


In the context of Indian economy which of the following is/are the purpose/purposes of ‘Statutory Reserve Requirements’?

To enable the Central Bank to control the amount of advances the banks can create.

To make the people’s deposits with banks safe and liquid.

To prevent the commercial banks from making excessive profits.

To force the banks to have sufficient vault cash to meet their day-to-day requirements.

Select the correct answer using the code given below.

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

Answer: (b) 1 and 2 only

Explanation:

  • A statutory reserve is an amount of cash a financial institution, such as a bank, credit union, or insurance company, must keep on hand to meet the obligations incurred by virtue of accepting deposits and premium payments.
  • The statutory reserves required of banks and credit unions are generally set by the nation’s central bank, and those required of insurance companies are set by statute or regulation by the national, state or provincial government or regulatory authority.
    Calculated in various ways, statutory reserves are required to ensure that financial institutions are capable of paying claims even in a calamitous situation.