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Daily Prelims Test – 22_February 2021

The News Media and Digital Platforms Mandatory Bargaining Code Bill 2020 is associated with which of the following country?

Myanmar

United States of America 

United Kingdom

Australia

Answer: (d) Australia

Explanation:

In NEWS: Australia’s new Bill to regulate Facebook, Google figures in Morrison’s chat with PM Modi

  • India and Australia being comprehensive strategic partners, are working together on issues like COVID-19, the circular economy, oceans and an open, secure and prosperous Indo-Pacific.
  • The two leaders also discussed the progress of Australia’s media platform Bill. Hence option (d) is correct
  • Under the News Media and Digital Platforms Mandatory Bargaining Code Bill 2020, tech and social media giants such as Facebook and Google will have to pay local news outlets for using their content.
  • The Australian law would force Facebook and Alphabet Inc’s Google to reach commercial deals with Australian publishers or face compulsory arbitration.
  • The move is being studied worldwide as it will set a precedent in the use of Web-based news and content. Legislation is being studied worldwide given that many governments are struggling to contain online platforms. The Indian government too is looking at reining in major social media platforms.
  • The discussion with Mr. Modi is being viewed as significant as the Centre has looked at reining in major social media platforms like Facebook and Twitter over freedom of expression and the ongoing farmers’ protest.

Source: https://www.thehindu.com/news/national/australias-new-bill-to-regulate-facebook-google-figures-in-morrisons-chat-with-pm-modi/article33886159.ece


Which of the following can be the possible impacts of crude oil price hike on Indian economy?

  1. Increasing Inflation
  2. Currency Depreciation
  3. Increasing Remittance
  4. Government get greater value from disinvestment

Select the correct answer using the code given below:

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

Answer: (d) 1, 2, 3 and 4

Explanation:

In NEWS: India urges oil producers to ease output cuts as crude prices soar

  • The Indian basket of crude, which comprises Oman, Dubai and Brent crude, was at $62.64 a barrel on 16 February. 
  • Petroleum minister Dharmendra Pradhan on Wednesday urged crude oil-producing nations to do a rethink on ongoing production cuts, at a time petrol and diesel are retailing at record high prices in India. The rising oil prices during the last few weeks are now threatening a fragile global economic recovery

About Impact on India

  • The increase in oil prices will increase the country’s import bill, and further disturb its current account deficit (excess of imports of goods and services over exports). According to estimates, a one-dollar increase in crude oil price increases the oil bill by around USD 1.6 billion per year.
  • The increase in crude prices could also also further increase inflationary pressures that have been building up over the past few months. This will decrease the space for the monetary policy committee to ease policy rates further.
  • If oil prices continue to increase, the government shall be forced to cut taxes on petroleum and diesel which may cause loss of revenue and deteriorate its fiscal balance. The growth slowdown in the last two years has already resulted in a precarious fiscal situation because of tax revenue shortfalls.
  • The value of Indian oil and gas companies could be positively impacted. The government could get greater value from disinvestment in Bharat Petroleum Corporation Limited.
  • Remittances from the Persian Gulf could increase. Hence option (d) is correct

Source: https://www.livemint.com/industry/energy/india-appeals-oil-producing-nations-to-ease-production-cuts-11613581365024.html https://indianexpress.com/article/explained/crude-oil-price-rise-explained-7181078/


Consider the following Statements regarding Floor test or Trust vote

It is a constitutional mechanism and is used to determine if the incumbent government enjoys the support of the legislature.

The voting process can happen orally only

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: Puducherry floor test today: Numbers, process and more

  • The Congress-led government in Puducherry will undergo a floor test ordered by Lieutenant Governor Tamilisai Soundararajan to prove its majority in the assembly
  • The opposition had submitted a petition seeking a floor test to the lieutenant governor (L-G)’s office on February 18.

What is a floor test?

  • It is a constitutional mechanism under which a Chief Minister appointed by the Governor can be asked to prove majority on the floor of the Legislative Assembly of the state. Hence statement 1 is correct
  • The voting process can happen orally, with electronic gadgets or a ballot processHence statement 2 is incorrect
  • It is a motion initiated by the government seeking to know if it enjoys the confidence of the legislature. A confidence motion or a vote of confidence or a trust vote allows elected representatives to determine if the council of ministers command the confidence of the House. 
  • The idea behind the trust vote is to uphold the political accountability of the elected government to the state legislature.
  • A no-confidence motion, or vote of no-confidence, or a no-trust vote, can be sought by any House member to express that they no longer have confidence in the government.
  • The chief minister will have to resign if the floor test fails.
  • There is another test, Composite Floor Test, which is conducted only when more than one person stakes claim to form the government.
  • When the majority is not clear, the governor might call for a special session to see who has the majority.
  • The majority is counted based on those present and voting. This can also be done through a voice vote where the member can respond orally or through division voting.
  • When no party gets a clear majority, the governor can use his discretion in the selection of chief ministerial candidate to prove the majority as soon as possible.

Source: https://www.hindustantimes.com/india-news/puducherry-floor-test-today-numbers-process-and-more-101613959831041.html


Consider the following Statements regarding Minor Forest Produce

  1. It has been defined under the Indian Forest Act, 1927.
  2. The government of India declares Minimum Support Price for the selected MFP based on the suggestions of Tribal Cooperative Marketing Development Federation of India

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: (b) 2 only 

Explanation:

In NEWS: Centre’s approval sought for forest produce based development

  • Under Government of India’s Minimum Support Price Scheme, 38 kinds of minor forest produce along with 14 others types of minor forest produce are procured at the rate fixed by State Government
  • Chhattisgarh Chief Minister Bhupesh Baghel has urged Union Tribal Affairs Minister Arjun Munda to give immediate approval to proposals worth Rs 234 crores for minor forest produce based development.

About Minor Forest Produce

  • Minor Forest Produce (MFP) is a subset of forest produce and got a definition only in 2007 when the Scheduled Tribes and Other Traditional Forest Dwellers (Recognition of Forest Rights) Act, 2006, was enacted. Hence statement 1 is incorrect
  • Section 2(i) of the said Act defines a Minor Forest Produce (MFP) as all non-timber forest produce of plant origin and includes bamboo, brushwood, stumps, canes, Tusser, cocoon, honey, waxes, Lac, tendu/kendu leaves, medicinal plants and herbs, roots, tuber and the like.
  • Thus, the definition of “minor forest produce” includes bamboo and cane, thereby changing the categorization of bamboo and cane as “trees” under the Indian Forest Act 1927.

The Scheduled Tribes and Other Traditional Forest Dwellers (Recognition of Forest Rights) Act, 2006, popularly known as the Forests Rights Act (FRA), was enacted in 2007

  • The Act recognizes and vests individual forest-dwellers with forest rights to live in and cultivate forest land that was occupied before 13 December 2005 and grants community forest rights to manage, protect and regenerate the forest under section 3(1)(i), and to own and dispose minor forest products from forests where they had traditional access. 
  • Section 3(1)(c) of the Forest Rights Act 2006 defines forest rights as inclusive of ‘Right of ownership, access to collect, use and dispose of minor forest produce which have traditionally been collected within or outside village boundaries’.
  • Individuals, communities and gram sabhas having rights under this particular section of the Act will not only have the rights to use but also rights of ownership over MFPs. This goes beyond the Provisions of the Panchayats (Extension To The Scheduled Areas) Act, 1996 (PESA Act) which had authorised states to entrust panchayats and gramasabhas as the owners of MFP.
  • The Government of India has launched a central sector scheme for marketing of Minor Forest Produce through Minimum Support Price (MSP) and development of value chain to ensure fair monetary returns to MFP gatherers for their efforts in collection, primary processing, storage, packaging, transportation etc. 
  • The scheme envisages fixation and declaration of Minimum Support Price for the selected MFP based on the suggestions /inputs received from Tribal Cooperative Marketing Development Federation of India (TRIFED) which came into existence in 1987, and the States concerned. Procurement and marketing operation at pre- fixed MSP is undertaken by the designated State agencies. Hence statement 2 is correct

Source: PIB


Consider the following Statements regarding Comptroller and Auditor General (CAG) of India

He/She is removed by the President on the same grounds and in the same manner as a Supreme Court judge

He/she does not hold his office till the pleasure of the President.

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) Both1 and 2 

Explanation:

In NEWS: Nagaland government wrongly used funds belonging to employees’: CAG report

  • The state government failed to discharge its statutory liability as it could not contribute ₹28.57 crore as its matching share under the NPS.
  • State government employees appointed on or after January 1, 2010, are covered under the National Pension System which is a defined contributory pension scheme. Under the scheme, employees contribute 10 per cent of their basic pay along with dearness allowances and the state government is required to make a matching contribution.

About Comptroller and Auditor General (CAG) of India

  • The Constitution of India provides for an independent office of the Comptroller and Auditor General of India (CAG) in chapter V under Part V.
  • The CAG is mentioned in the Constitution of India under Article 148 – 151.
  • The CAG is appointed by the President of India by a warrant under his hand and seal.
  • He/she holds office for a period of six years or upto the age of 65 years, whichever is earlier.
  • CAG can be removed by the President on the same grounds and in the same manner as a judge of the Supreme Court.  Hence statement 1 is correct
  • He/she does not hold his office till the pleasure of the President. Hence statement 2 is correct
  • CAG audits the accounts related to all expenditure from the Consolidated Fund of India, Consolidated Fund of each state and UT having a legislative assembly.
  • CAG audits all expenditure from the Contingency Fund of India and the Public Account of India as well as the Contingency Fund and Public Account of each state.
  • CAG audits all trading, manufacturing, profit and loss accounts, balance sheets and other subsidiary accounts kept by any department of the Central Government and the state governments.
  • CAG audits the receipts and expenditure of all bodies and authorities substantially financed from the Central or State revenues; government companies; other corporations and bodies, when so required by related laws.
  • He ascertains and certifies the net proceeds of any tax or duty and his certificate is final on the matter.
  • He/she submits his audit reports relating to the accounts of the Centre and State to the President and Governor, who shall, in turn, place them before both the houses of Parliament and the state legislature respectively.
  • He/she submits 3 audit reports to the President: audit report on appropriation accounts, audit report on finance accounts and audit report on public undertakings.

Source: https://www.hindustantimes.com/cities/nagaland-government-wrongly-used-funds-belonging-to-employees-cag-report-101613833863135.html


Consider the following Statements regarding National Commission for Backward Classes

The 102nd Amendment Act of 2018 conferred a constitutional status on this Commission

It has all the powers of a civil court while trying a suit.

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) Both1 and 2 

Explanation:

In NEWS: In favour of 4 sub-categories of OBCs, says NCBC chairman

  • THE NATIONAL Commission for Backward Classes is in favour of four sub-categories of Other Backward Classes, in line with what the Justice G Rohini Commission is exploring, its Chairman Bhagwan Lal Sahni
  • The Justice Rohini Commission has been studying sub-categorisation of OBCs and is expected to submit its report to the government in July.
  • The Commission [for Backward Classes], in principle, is in favour of roughly four categories of OBCs as being suggested by the Justice Rohini Commission. These sub-categories will broadly be about OBC sections which have either benefited adequately or less benefited from reservation. The other two categories are about least benefited and those who have not at all benefited from the present reservation structure for OBCs

About NATIONAL Commission for Backward Classes

  • The 102nd Amendment Act of 2018 conferred a constitutional status on the Commission and inserted a new Article 338-B specific for NCBCHence statement 1 is correct
  • It has the authority to examine complaints and welfare measures regarding socially and educationally backward classes.
  • The Commission consists of five members including a Chairperson, Vice- Chairperson and three other Members appointed by the President by warrant under his hand and seal. 
  • The conditions of service and tenure of office of the Chairperson, Vice- Chairperson and other Members is determined by President.
  • Article 338B provides authority to NCBC to examine complaints and welfare measures regarding socially and educationally backward classes.

Powers and Functions

  • The commission investigates and monitors all matters relating to the safeguards provided for the socially and educationally backward classes under the Constitution or under any other law to evaluate the working of such safeguards.
  • It participates and advises on the socio-economic development of the socially and educationally backward classes and to evaluate the progress of their development under the Union and any State.
  • It presents to the President, annually and at such other times as the Commission may deem fit, reports upon the working of those safeguards. The President laid such reports before each House of Parliament.
  • Where any such report or any part thereof, relates to any matter with which any State Government is concerned, a copy of such report shall be forwarded to the State Government.
  • NCBC has to discharge such other functions in relation to the protection, welfare and development and advancement of the socially and educationally backward classes as the President may, subject to the provisions of any law made by Parliament, by rule specify.
  • It has all the powers of a civil court while trying a suit. Hence statement 2 is correct

Source: https://indianexpress.com/article/india/in-favour-of-4-sub-categories-of-obcs-says-ncbc-chairman-7198824/


Which of the following is correct with reference to Carbon footprint?

  1. It is the cost that companies has to bear to bring clean technology in their production lines.
  2. It is the amount of greenhouse gases-especially carbon dioxide-released into the atmosphere by a particular human activity.
  3. It is emitted from burning biofuels, fossil fuels, and open biomass burning.
  4. It is the process of capturing and storing atmospheric carbon dioxide.

Answer: (b) It is the amount of greenhouse gases-especially carbon dioxide-released into the atmosphere by a particular human activity.

Explanation:

In NEWS: Explained: What is Carbon Watch, India’s first app to assess one’s carbon footprint?

  • Chandigarh became the first state or Union Territory in India to launch Carbon Watch, a mobile application to assess the carbon footprint of an individual. 
  • Although the app can be accessed by everyone, it has specific options for the residents of Chandigarh to compile a detail study.
  • Chandigarh is one of the green cities, which has achieved the surplus 45 per cent green cover instead of the set target of 33 per cent. Chandigarh has a per capita density of 878 vehicles per 1,000 population.

What is Carbon Watch App?

  • It is a mobile application to assess the carbon footprint of an individual. Carbon footprint is the amount of greenhouse gases-especially carbon dioxide-released into the atmosphere by a particular human activity. Hence option (b) is correct
  • The app can be accessed by everyone but it has specific options for the residents of Chandigarh to compile a detail study.
  • The user will need to fill details in four parts- Water, Energy, Waste Generation and Transport (Vehicular movement).
  • It would help in making the people Climate-Smart Citizens while making them capable of accessing their carbon footprint.
  • The application will help the government to make a strategy for Chandigarh.
  • It will help in analysing the average ratio of Chandigarh in the national and world emission.

Source: https://indianexpress.com/article/explained/what-is-carbon-watch-indias-1st-app-to-assess-ones-carbon-footprint-7198710/


Consider the following Statements regarding Chandrayaan 3 Mission

  1. It will be a mission repeat of Chandrayaan-2 but will not have an orbiter
  2. The lander for Chandrayaan-3 will have only four throttle-able engines unlike Vikram on Chandrayaan-2

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) Both1 and 2 

Explanation:

In NEWS: 

Chandrayaan-3, India’s third mission to Moon, is likely to be launched in 2022

  • The COVID-19 lockdown has hit several projects of the Indian Space Research Organisation (ISRO) including Chandrayaan-3, which was scheduled to be launched in late 2020, and Gaganyaan, the country’s first manned space mission.
  • Chandrayaan-2, aimed at landing a rover on unchartered Lunar South Pole, was launched on July 22, 2019 on board the country’s most powerful geosynchronous launch vehicle.
  • However, the lander Vikram hard-landed on September 7, 2019, crashing India’s dream to become the first nation to successfully land on the lunar surface in its maiden attempt.
  • Gaganyaan envisages to send three Indians to space by 2022. The four test pilots selected for the mission are currently undergoing training in Russia.

What is Chandrayaan 3 Mission?

  • ISRO is planning to land the Chandrayaan 3 lander at the same location as the Chandrayaan 2 – the lunar South Pole, which is a singularly promising part of the moon’s surface.
  • It will be a mission repeat of Chandrayaan-2 but will only include a lander and rover similar to that of Chandrayaan-2.
  • Unlike its predecessor, Chandrayaan-3 will not have an orbiter. Hence statement 1 is correct
  • The lander for Chandrayaan-3 will have only four throttle-able engines unlike Vikram on Chandrayaan-2 which had five 800 N engines with a fifth one being centrally mounted and with fixed thrust. Hence statement 2 is correct
  • The Chandrayaan-3 lander will also be equipped with a Laser Doppler Velocimeter (LDV).

Source: https://www.thehindu.com/sci-tech/science/chandrayaan-3-launch-delayed-further-to-2022/article33894302.ece


Consider the following Statements regarding Hucheshwara temple

  1. It was built in 1173 A.D. to celebrate the coronation of Hoysala King Veera Ballala II.
  2. It is a Hoysala period temple located in Karnataka.

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) Both1 and 2 

Explanation:

In NEWS: Hucheshwara Temple in Halebidu suffers damage

  • The structure of the Hoysala period Hucheshwara temple at Halebid suffered damage after plants and shrubs grown around the structure were put on fire.
  • Workers hired by the local office of the Archaeological Survey of India (ASI) to clear the vegetation set the plants ablaze and ignoring the guidelines meant for clearing the vegetation around a protected monument.
  • The temple located close to Hoysaleshwara temple is more than 900 years old.

About the temple:

  • It is a simple yet elegant specimen of 12th century Hoysala architecture. Hence statement 2 is correct
  • It is located in the village of Korvangla, 10 km from Hassan city, in Hassan district or Karnataka state, India.
  • The temple was built in 1173 A.D. by a rich officer called Buci (or Buchiraja), to celebrate the coronation of Hoysala King Veera Ballala II. Hence statement 1 is correct
  • Nearby are two more temples that are in ruins. From the inscriptions on the premises, it is evident that these two temples had been commissioned by Buci’s older brothers, Govinda and Naka.
  • This temple is protected as a monument of national importance by the Archaeological Survey of India.

Source: https://www.thehindu.com/news/national/karnataka/hucheshwara-temple-in-halebidu-suffers-damage/article33834547.ece


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

  1. Ajanta 
  2. Badami
  3. Bagh
  4. 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 Boddhisattva 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 Boddhisattva is wearing a big crown in which detailed rendering is visible.

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