1. Consider the following statements regarding Di-ammonium phosphate (DAP):

1) It is the most used fertiliser in India after urea.

2) Farmers normally apply this fertiliser just before or at the time of sowing.

3) It contains only phosphorus (P) that stimulates root establishment and development.

Which of the statements given above is/are correct?

a)  2 only

b) 2 and 3 only

c)  1 and 2 only

d) 1,2 and 3

Answer: (a) 2 only


In NEWS: Rajasthan continues to reel under DAP fertilizer shortage

●    Rajasthan continues to reel under an acute shortage of diammonium phosphate (DAP) fertilizer, which has adversely affected the sowing of rabi crops, especially mustard and gram, in an estimated 50-lakh hectare area.

●    The State government has made a request to the Centre to make available 1.10 lakh tonnes of DAP during October.

●    Besides, the farmers have been asked to use the alternate phosphatic fertilizers — single super phosphate (SSP) and nitrogen, phosphorus and potassium (NPK) compounds — to avoid the possible losses because of shortage of DAP.

Di-ammonium phosphate:

●    DAP is the second most commonly used fertiliser in India, with its sales of 119.13 lakh tonnes (lt) in 2020-21 next only to the 350.42 lt of ureaHence statement (1) is incorrect.

●    Farmers normally apply this fertiliser just before or at the time of sowing, as it is high in phosphorus (P) that stimulates root establishment and development – without which plants cannot grow to their normal size or will take too long to mature. Hence statement (2) is correct.

●    DAP contains 46% P and 18% nitrogen (N). Hence statement (3) is incorrect.

●    Under the current scheme, the MRP of Urea is fixed but the subsidy can vary while MRP of DAP is decontrolled

●    The demand for DAP is increasing again because of post-monsoon rains in several parts of the State during the last few days.

Source: https://www.thehindu.com/news/national/other-states/rajasthan-continues-to-reel-under-dap-fertilizer-shortage/article37071775.ece

2.With respect to Single Super Phosphate, consider the following statements:

1) It is a phosphatic fertilizer containing Phosphorus, Sulphur and Calcium along with traces of many micro-nutrients.

2) It is the only Sulphur providing fertilizer in India.

3) It is preferred for oilseed crops.

Which of the statements given above is/are correct?

a)  1 and 3 only

b) 3 only

c)  2 only

d) 1, 2 and 3

Answer: (d) 1, 2 and 3


In NEWS: Alternate phosphatic fertilizers

Mr. Gehlot said Union Minister of Chemicals and Fertilizers Mansukh Mandavia had also been requested to increase the DAP supply. Besides, the farmers have been asked to use the alternate phosphatic fertilizers — single super phosphate (SSP) and nitrogen, phosphorus and potassium (NPK) compounds — to avoid the possible losses because of shortage of DAP.

Single Super Phosphate (SSP):

●    SSP is the most popular phosphatic fertilizer after DAP as it contains 3 major plant nutrients namely Phosphorus, Sulphur and Calcium along with traces of many micro-nutrients. Hence statement (1) is correct.

●    SSP is a grey to brownish coloured material containing monocalcium phosphate and calcium sulphate in almost equal proportions. The material is slightly hygroscopic and needs moisture proof packing to avoid lump formation on storage.

●    SSP is preferred for oilseed crops as sulphur is an integral part of many edible oils. Since acidic soil is poor in calcium so SSP is useful in acidic soils as calcium helps increase yields. Hence statement (3) is correct.

●    Increasing sulphur deficiency almost all over India is making SSP still more popular.

●    SSP is the only Sulphur providing fertilizer in India which contains water soluble phosphorus easily taken up by plantsHence statement (2) is correct.

Source: https://www.thehindu.com/news/national/other-states/rajasthan-continues-to-reel-under-dap-fertilizer-shortage/article37071775.ece

3. Bhaskaravarman, the crowned ruler of the Kamrupa kingdom, was a contemporary of

a)  Akbar

b) Chandragupta Maurya

c)  Harshavardhana

d) Rajaraja Cholan

Answer: (c) Harshavardhana


In NEWS: Bhaskarabda to be added to official Assam calendar

●    Bhaskarabda, an era counted from the date of the ascension of a 7th-century local ruler, will be added to the Saka and Gregorian in the official calendar of the Assam government.

●    Bhaskarabda began when Bhaskaravarman was crowned ruler of the Kamrupa kingdom.

●    He was a contemporary and political ally of northern Indian ruler HarshavardhanaHence option (c) is correct.

●    Unlike the Gregorian, where a day starts at midnight, the Assamese calendar begins and ends at sunrise over 24 hours.

●    While the Gregorian goes by the solar cycle, the Saka and Bhaskarabda use a lunisolar system based on both the phases of the moon and the solar year.

●    The gap between Bhaskarabda and Gregorian is 593 years.


●    Bhaskaravarman (bʱaːskərə’vərmən) (600–650), the last of the Varman dynasty, was perhaps the most illustrious of the kings of the medieval Kamarupa.

●    After being captured by the Gauda king during the reign of his father, he was able to re-establish the rule of the Varman’s.

●    He made political alliances with Harshavardhana of Thaneswar, against the alliance of the Gauda and East Malwa.

●    Bhaskaravarman came to power after his brother Supratisthitavarman had died. 

Source: https://www.thehindu.com/news/national/other-states/bhaskarabda-to-be-added-to-official-assam-calendar/article37068273.ece

4. Mount Manipur is an island peak in

a)  Manipur

b) Nagaland

c)  Rajasthan

d) Andaman and Nicobar islands

Answer: (d) Andaman and Nicobar islands


In NEWS: Explained: Why a peak in Andaman and Nicobar Islands is now named after Manipur

●    The Union government rechristened Mount Harriet, a historical tourist spot in the Andaman and Nicobar islands, as ‘Mount Manipur’. Hence option (d) is correct.

What is Manipur’s connection to Mount Harriet?

●    After the Anglo-Manipur War of 1891, several Manipuris who had fought the British in the war, including Maharaja Kulachandra Dhwaja Singh, were exiled to the British penal colony in the Andaman Islands.

●    The battle was triggered by a coup in the palace of Manipur, which had been marked by internal factionalism in the years leading up to 1891.

●    The British government took advantage of the internal dissension among the princes of the royal family.

●    Since the cellular jail (Kalapani) was yet to be built, Kulachandra and the prisoners were kept on Mount Harriet, a hillock in what is now the Ferragunj tehsil of South Andaman district.

●    23 men, including King Kulachandra and his brothers, were “transported for life” to the Andamans.

●    While some died there, Kulachandra was released and shifted elsewhere before his death.

●    In the first phase of the war, the British surrendered and their officers — including Quinton — were executed in public.

●    In the second phase, the British attacked Manipur from three sides, and finally captured the Kangla Fort in Imphal.

●    Prince Tikendrajit and four others were hanged by the British, while Kulachandra, along with 22 others, were banished to the Andaman Islands.

●    Many say the war was described as a blow to British prestige.

●    In India, it was viewed as being part of the general uprising against British rule in the country, soon after the Revolt of 1857.

●    The war led to Manipur officially becoming a princely state under the indirect rule of the British crown.

Source: https://indianexpress.com/article/explained/andaman-and-nicobar-islands-mount-harriet-mount-manipur-7581032/

5. Consider the following statements:

1) A loan granted for short duration crops will be treated as NPA, if the installment of principal or interest thereon remains overdue for two crop seasons.

2) A loan granted for long duration crops will be treated as NPA, if the installment of principal or interest thereon remains overdue for one crop season.

Which of the statements 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



●    A report by Crisil Ratings stated that gross non-performing assets (NPAs) of banks are expected to rise to 8-9% this fiscal from 7.5% as on March 31.

●    Key Findings

●    Gross non-performing assets (NPAs) of banks are expected to increase to 8-9 per cent in the current financial year.

●    But gross NPAs of banks would still remain below the peak of 11.2% seen at the end of fiscal 2018.

Non-Performing Asset (NPA):

●    NPAs are loans or advances made by a financial institution, on which both principal or interest is unpaid for a specified period of time.

●    Thus, NPAs are those loans that have ceased to generate income for the bank.

Types of NPA:

●    Sub Standard:   A sub-standard asset is one that is classified as an NPA for a period not exceeding twelve months.

●    Doubtful: A doubtful asset is one that has remained as an NPA for a period exceeding twelve months.

●    Loss: A loss asset is one where loss has already been identified by the bank or an external institution, but it is not yet completely written off, due to its recovery value, however little it may be.

NPAs of Agriculture Loans:

●    A loan granted for short duration crops will be treated as NPA, if the instalment of principal or interest thereon remains overdue for two crop seasonsHence statement (1) is correct.

●    A loan granted for long duration crops will be treated as NPA, if the instalment of principal or interest thereon remains overdue for one crop seasonHence statement (2) is correct.

●    For the purpose of these guidelines, ‘long duration’ crops would be crops with a crop season longer than one year and crops, which are not ‘long duration’ crops, would be treated as ‘short duration’ crops.

Source: https://www.thehindu.com/business/markets/gross-npas-of-banks-to-rise-to-8-9-from-75-crisil/article37078026.ece

6. With reference to Production Gap, which of the following statements is/are correct?

a)  It is the difference between the emissions level countries have pledged to achieve under international agreements and the level consistent with limiting warming to well below 2 degrees c

b) It is the difference between government plans for fossil fuel production and the levels consistent with globally agreed climate limits.

c)  It is defined as the difference between actually implemented adaptation and a societal set goal.

d) The gap between any currency in the international market is decided by the demand for goods/services.

Answer: (b) It is the difference between government plans for fossil fuel production and the levels consistent with globally agreed climate limits


In NEWS: Global plans on increasing fossil fuel production a bad sign for warming world: UNEP report

●    The world will produce 240% more coal than would be consistent with limiting global warming to 1.5°C. This is equal to 75% of current levels of global coal production

●    Most major oil and gas producing nations still plan to produce more than double the amount of fossil fuels in 2030 than what would be consistent with limiting global warming to 1.5°C, the Production gap report 2021 released

●    This is the third global assessment of the “production gap”— the difference between government plans for fossil fuel production and the levels consistent with globally agreed climate limits including the Paris climate agreement. Hence option (b) is correct.

●    The report flagged that the gap between planned extraction of coal, oil and gas compared to safe limits was the same as it was two years ago.

●    India and Russia are planning to increase their coal production, according to the report jointly produced by Stockholm Environment Institute, International Institute for Sustainable Development, think tank ODI and E3G, as well as UNEP.

●    More than 130 countries have now set or are considering a target of reducing emissions to net-zero by mid-century.

●    Global gas production is projected to increase the most in two decades (2020-2040), according to government plans. This continued, long-term global expansion in gas production is inconsistent with the Paris Agreement’s temperature limits.

●    The report included an analysis of 15 major fossil-fuel-producing countries, which accounted for 75 per cent of global fossil fuel production in 2020 as estimated by the International Energy Agency.

Source: https://www.downtoearth.org.in/news/climate-change/global-plans-on-increasing-fossil-fuel-production-a-bad-sign-for-warming-world-unep-report-79777

7. Which one of the following statements is incorrect regarding Mount Kilimanjaro?

a)  It is a dormant volcano in Tanzania

b) Its summit is snowbound throughout the year

c)  It is a part of Atlas mountain range

d) It is the highest mountain in Africa

Answer: (c) It is a part of Atlas mountain range


In NEWS: The snows of Kilimanjaro could vanish by 2040 due to climate change: Report

●    By 2030, up to 118 million extremely poor people in Africa will be exposed to drought, floods and extreme heat

●    The snow atop Mount Kilimanjaro, immortalised in literature and film, could vanish in the next two decades due to climate change, according to a report

●    The snow atop other peaks in tropical east Africa such as Mt Kenya, after which the country of Kenya is named as well as the Ruwenzori mountains in Uganda could also disappear, the State of the Climate in Africa 2020

●    The snow on Mt Kenya, the second-highest peak in Africa after Kilimanjaro, could disappear as soon as 2030

Mount Kilimanjaro:

●    Mount Kilimanjaro is Africa’s tallest mountain at about 5,895 meters.

●    It is also the largest free-standing mountain rise in the world, meaning it is not part of a mountain range.

●    Mt Kilimanjaro, the highest mountain in Africa, lies on the Equator. Its summit is, however, snowbound throughout the year. Hence option (c) is incorrect.

●    Kilimanjaro is a stratovolcano or composite and is made up of three cones: Kibo, Mawenzi, and Shira.

●    It is also the world’s tallest free standing mountain.

●    The first people known to have reached the summit of the mountain were Hans Meyer and Ludwig Purtscheller, in 1889.

Source: https://www.downtoearth.org.in/news/climate-change/the-snows-of-kilimanjaro-could-vanish-by-2040-due-to-climate-change-report-79776

8. Consider the following statements regarding Mawsmai cave:

1) It is a limestone cave in Meghalaya.

2) This cave is mostly influenced by the streams of the Kynshi River.

3) It is situated in the Garo Hills district.

Which of the statements given above is/are correct?

a)  3 only

b) 2 and 3 only

c)  1 and 2 only

d) 1, 2 and 3

Answer: (c) 1 and 2 only


In NEWS: Micro snail species discovered in Meghalaya’s Mawsmai cave

●    The last time a species of the Georissa genus was discovered in India was 170 years ago in 1851

●    A micro snail species named Georissa mawsmaiensis has recently been discovered from Mawsmai, a limestone cave in Meghalaya, 170 years after the last such discovery was made. Hence statement (1) is correct.

●    It was in 1851 that Georissa saritta, a member of the same genus as the latest find, was collected and described from the Musmai (Mawsmai today) valley

●    Five species of cave-dwelling snails have been reported from the caves of Meghalaya. There may be more species which await discovery.

Georissa genus:

●    Georissa is found in soil or subterranean habitats in lowland tropical forest as well as high altitude evergreen forests or on rock surfaces rich in calcium.

●    The members of the Georissa genus are widely distributed across and reported from Africa, Asia, and the Pacific. However, they are confined to microhabitats consisting of limestone caves or karst landscapes formed by the dissolution of limestone.

Mawsmai cave:

●    The Mawsmai cave is situated in the small village of Mawsmai, around four kilometres from Cherrapunjee (Sohra) in the East Khasi Hills district of MeghalayaHence statement (3) is incorrect.

●    The term ‘Mawsmai’ means ‘Oath Stone’ in the Khasi language.

●    The Khasi people use the local term ‘Krem’ for the cave.

●    Mawsmai cave is located at an altitude of 1,195 metres above sea level and is indirectly influenced by the streams of the Kynshi river originating from the East Khasi Hills. Hence statement (2) is correct.

Source: https://www.downtoearth.org.in/news/wildlife-biodiversity/micro-snail-species-discovered-in-meghalaya-s-mawsmai-cave-79789

9. Consider the following statements regarding Polar bears:

1) They are hypercarnivorous.

2) It has been considered as a critically endangered   species under the IUCN red list.

3) Most polar bears occur north of the Arctic Circle to the North Pole.

Which of the statements given above are correct?

a)  1 and 3 only

b) 2 and 3 only

c)  1 and 2 only

d) 1, 2 and 3

Answer: (a) 1 and 3 only


In NEWS: Arctic melt: will polar bears vanish by 2100?

●    The shrinkage of summer sea ice in the Arctic has long been a concern, as has been the survival of the species that depend on it for survival.

●    A new study has now put a timeline to an impending disaster: If carbon emissions continue at current levels, summer ice will disappear by 2100 — and, along with it, creatures such as seals and polar bears.

Polar bears:

●    Polar bears are classified as marine mammals because they spend most of their lives on the sea ice of the Arctic Ocean. Polar bears are hypercarnivorous and the most carnivorous member of the Ursus genus. Hence statement (1) is correct.

●    A hypercarnivore is an animal which has a diet that is more than 70% meat, either via active predation or by scavenging. The remaining non-meat diet may consist of non-animal foods such as fungi, fruits or other plant material.

●    They have a thick layer of body fat and a water-repellent coat that insulates them from the cold air and water.

●    Considered talented swimmers, they can sustain a pace of six miles per hour by paddling with their front paws and holding their hind legs flat like a rudder.

●    Polar bears spend over 50% of their time hunting for food.

●    Unlike other bear species, polar bears are almost exclusively meat eaters (carnivorous). They mainly eat ringed seals, but may also eat bearded seals. Polar bears hunt seals by waiting for them to come to the surface of sea ice to breathe.

●    Most polar bears occur north of the Arctic Circle to the North Pole. There are some populations south of the Arctic Circle in the Hudson Bay of Manitoba, Canada. Polar bears live in Alaska, Canada, Russia, Greenland, and some northern islands owned by Norway, such as Svalbard. Hence statement (3) is correct.

●    Polar bears depend on the sea ice, which forms above the open waters where their seal prey lives. They will spend time on land when sea ice is not available

●    IUCN status– vulnerable species. Hence statement (2) is incorrect.

Source: https://indianexpress.com/article/explained/arctic-melt-will-polar-bears-vanish-by-2100-7578881/

10. Indian Government Bond Yields are influenced by which of the following?

1) Actions of the United States Federal Reserve

2) Actions of the Reserve bank of India

3) Inflation and short-term interest rates

Select the correct answer using the code given below.

a)  1 and 2 only

b) 2 only

c)  3 only

d) 1, 2 and 3

Answer: (d) 1, 2 and 3


●    Bond yield is the return an investor gets on that bond or on a particular government security. It depends on the price of the bond which is impacted by its demand. The major factors affecting the yield is the monetary policy of the Reserve Bank of India, especially the course of interest rates, the fiscal position of the government and its borrowing programme, global markets, economy, and inflation

●    Actions of the United States federal reserve can impact the investments flowing in India. The investments by foreign players in government securities can be affected by this. This will lead to change in demand of government securities and thereby impacting its yield. Hence statement (1) is correct.

●    Actions of Reserve bank determine the liquidity and also the cost of funds available in the economy through its

●    various inflation management tools. The cost of funds will directly impact the demand of government securities in the market and thereby influencing its yield. Hence statement (2) is correct.

●    Inflation and short term rates determine the purchasing capacity of the people in the economy. Therefore, this also has an impact on the demand and price of the government -securities thereby influencing the yield. Hence statement (3) is correct.