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Daily Prelims Test – 23_July

1. Consider the following statements regarding the Global Fund

It is a partnership designed to accelerate the end of AIDS, tuberculosis and malaria as epidemics.

This organization maintains its secretariat in Geneva, Switzerland.

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: Deprived of sources of livelihood, HIV/AIDS vulnerable groups petition global fund

Sex workers, transpersons, gay and bisexual men, drug users and people living with HIV/AIDS have petitioned the Global Fund for AIDS, TB and Malaria (GFATM) protesting against being ignored by the government and multilateral agencies in coronavirus (COVID-19) related emergency relief efforts.

About the Global Fund

  • The Global Fund to Fight AIDS, Tuberculosis and Malaria was created in 2002 to raise, manage and invest the world’s money to respond to three of the deadliest infectious diseases the world has ever known. The mission of the Global Fund is to invest the world’s money to defeat these three diseases. Hence statement 1 is correct
  • As an international organization, the Global Fund mobilizes and invests more than US$4 billion a year to support programs run by local experts in more than 100 countries.
  • In partnership with governments, civil society, technical agencies, the private sector and people affected by the diseases, we are challenging barriers and embracing innovation.
  • The organization maintains its secretariat in Geneva, Switzerland. Hence statement 2 is correct
  •  

Source: https://www.thehindu.com/news/national/deprived-of-sources-of-livelihood-hivaids-vulnerable-groups-petition-global-fund/article32151264.ece

2. Consider the following statements regarding Bharat

It is an indigenously developed drone to the Indian Army for carrying out accurate surveillance in high altitude areas and mountainous terrain

It is developed by Defence Research and Development Organisation

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: DRDO’s ‘Bharat’ drones for Indian Army for accurate surveillance along China border

  • DRDO has provided its indigenously-developed drone named Bharat to the Indian Army for carrying out accurate surveillance in high altitude areas and mountainous terrain along the Line of Actual Control in Eastern Ladakh. Hence statement 1 is correct
  • The Bharat drones have been developed by a Chandigarh-based laboratory of the Defence Research and Development OrganisationHence statement 2 is correct
  • The Bharat series of the drones can be listed among World’s most agile and lightest Surveillance drone
  • The unibody biomimetic design with advance release technology is a lethal combination for surveillance missions
  • The drone is equipped with artificial intelligence to detect friends and foes and can take action accordingly.
  • The drone has been made capable of survival in extreme cold weather temperatures and is being developed further for harsher weather.
  • The drone provides real-time video transmission during the complete missions and with very advanced night vision capabilities, it can detect humans hidden in deep forests.

Source: https://www.hindustantimes.com/india-news/drdo-s-bharat-drones-for-indian-army-for-accurate-surveillance-along-china-border/story-qeGW9rDFjIpNy7a8ov2eSI.html

3. Consider the following statements regarding Social Security Code Bill, 2019

It proposes setting up a social security fund under corporate social responsibility to benefits to all workers excluding gig workers.

It provides option of reducing provident fund contribution

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: House panel wants social security number for migrant workers

  • The Parliamentary Standing Committee on Labour has recommended that the government introduce a social security number for migrant workers, especially those working in the unorganised sectors which are beyond the purview of the labour laws.
  • It flagged issues related to the social security fund stated under the Social Security Code Bill 2019. There are no specific details in the legislation as to who will contribute to the fund and how it will be utilised.

About the Social Security Code Bill 2019:

  • The Code on Social Security, 2019 is a system or instruction which will merge eight exiting labour laws.
  • The Bill proposes setting up a social security fund using corpus available under corporate social responsibility. This fund will provide welfare benefits such as pension, medical cover, death and disablement benefits to all workers, including gig workers. Hence statement 1 is incorrect
  • The bill provides option of reducing provident fund contribution (currently at 12% of basic salary) and therefore increase workers take-home pay. Hence statement 2 is correct
  • Currently, workers are not entitled to gratuity before completing five years of continuous service. The bill says that fixed-term contract workers will be eligible for gratuity on a pro-rata basis.
  • It will empower the central government to exempt select establishments from all or any of the provisions of the code and makes Aadhaar mandatory for availing benefits under various social security schemes.
  • It provides for the establishment of several bodies to administer the social security schemes notified by the government.
  • It provides that every woman shall be entitled to, and her employer shall be liable for, the payment of maternity benefit at the rate of the average daily wage for the period of her actual absence

Source: https://www.thehindu.com/news/national/house-panel-wants-social-security-number-for-migrant-workers/article32152295.ece

4. The Household Social Consumption on Education in India report is surveyed by

NITI Aayog

National Statistical Office

Indian Statistical Institute

Tata Institute of Fundamental Research

Answer: (b) National Statistical Office

Explanation:

In NEWS : Every second female in HP enrolled at educational institute

  • According to a survey by NSO, at least 51.7 per cent females in the age group 3 to 35 years are enrolled and currently attending schools, colleges or other institutions, against a national average of 41.2 per cent and the state also has the lowest percentage (5.8) of females who have never been enrolled. Hence option (b) is correct
  • As per the report titled ‘Household Social Consumption on Education in India’, Himachal Pradesh ranks high on most indicators of education including literacy rate, enrolment, and attendance ratio.
  • Among the states, Himachal Pradesh has the highest percentage of females aged between 3 and 35 years who are enrolled in as well as currently attending educational institutions
  • The survey estimated that there are around 14.77 lakh households in rural areas of the state with an average household size of 3.9, and around 2.25 lakh urban households with an average size of 3. Significantly, the estimate of sex ratio of in rural Himachal is 1046 females per 1,000 males, the highest in the country, whereas in urban areas, it is 904, below the national average of 914.
  • The literacy rate in the state for persons aged above seven is 86.6 per cent, the fourth highest in the country. The urban literacy rate is 95.5, the second highest after Kerala.
  • The average number of years completed in formal education among persons aged 25 and above in the rural areas is 9.7 years in Himachal, the highest in the country along with Kerala and Uttarakhand.

Source: https://indianexpress.com/article/cities/shimla/every-second-female-hp-enrolled-educational-institute-6519429/

5. Vriksharopan Abhiyan will be implemented by which of the following ministry?

Ministry of Coal

Ministry of Power

Ministry of Civil Aviation

Ministry of Corporate Affairs

Answer: (a) Ministry of Coal

Explanation:

In NEWS : Home Minister Amit Shah to launch Vriksharopan Abhiyan in New Delhi tomorrow

  • On July 23, 2020, Home Minister Amit Shah will launch “Vriksharopan Abhiyan”. The minister is to launch the scheme through video conference in more than 130 locations spread in 38 districts.
  • Vriksharopan Abhiyan will be organized by the Ministry of Coal involving all Coal and Lignite PSUs tomorrow during which large scale plantations would be carried out in mines, colonies, offices and other suitable areas of Coal and Lignite PSUs. Hence option (a) is correct
  • Seedlings will be distributed in the nearby areas for promoting plantation by the society.
  • The eco-parks and tourism sites would provide avenues for recreation, adventure, water sport, bird watching etc. for the people residing in nearby areas and may also be integrated to form part of the tourism circuit. These sites are being planned to generate revenue for self-sustenance and to create employment potential for local people.

Source: http://www.newsonair.com/News?title=Home-Minister-Amit-Shah-to-launch-Vriksharopan-Abhiyan-in-New-Delhi-tomorrow&id=395427

6. Which one of the following is the best description of ‘Dhruvastra’, that was in the news recently?

Short gun for firing shells

Torpedo launch and recovery vessel

Military airborne radar system

Anti-tank guided missile

Answer: (d) Anti-tank guided missile

Explanation:

In NEWS : India’s anti-tank guided missile ‘Dhruvastra’ successfully test-fired. Hence option (d) is correct

  • India successfully conducted two rounds of helicopter-launched Nag missile (HeliNa), renamed as Dhrubastra from a defence base off Odisha coast
  • Dhruvastra can be fired in two different modes – direct attack and top attack. Eight missiles can be integrated with the helicopter with four twin launchers specially designed for the weapon. Several trials of the third generation missile that operates on ‘fire and forget’ principle have been conducted from both the ITR and Pokhran firing ranges.
  • The missile can be launched from twin-tube stub wing-mounted launchers on board the armed light combat helicopters and advanced light helicopters. While Nag missile has a maximum range of 4 km, the HeliNa has an extended strike range of about 8 km.

Source: https://www.newindianexpress.com/nation/2020/jul/22/indias-anti-tank-guided-missile-dhruvastra-successfully-test-fired-2173337.html

7. Consider the following statements regarding Unified Payments Interface

It was developed by National Payment Corporation of India under the guidelines of RBI.

It is based on the Immediate Payment Service platform.

There is no transactions limit through UPI

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

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

Answer: (a) 1 and 2 only

Explanation:

In NEWS: NPCI launches UPI Autopay

  • National Payments Corporation of India (NPCI) launched its one-stop fintech payment solution- UPI AutoPay in a virtual event of Global Fintech Fest.
  • The feature is dedicated to recurring payments and can be used for multiple financial purposes such as utility payments, booking bus pass, train tickets, paying DTH subscriptions among others. Customers can create e-mandate through their UPI ID or QR Scan for transactions up to Rs 2000

About Unified Payments Interface (UPI):

  • Launched in 2016, as a payment system that allows money transfer between any two bank accounts by using a smart phone.
  • UPI is standardized across banks – it will help you to pay directly from your bank account to different merchants without the hassle of typing your net-banking password, credit card details or IFSC code.
  • UPI can be used as a digital payment option along with cards, net-banking and wallets.
  • It allows both payment and receipt of money.
  • UPI was developed by National Payment Corporation of India (NPCI) under the guidelines of RBI. Hence statement 1 is correct
  • It is based on the Immediate Payment Service (IMPS) platform. Hence statement 2 is correct
  • Transactions limit through UPI –1 lakh / transactionHence statement 3 is incorrect

Source: https://www.thehindubusinessline.com/money-and-banking/npci-launches-upi-autopay/article32160429.ece

8. Consider the following statements regarding Pressurized Heavy-Water Reactor 

It is a nuclear power reactor using unenriched natural uranium as its fuel

It uses heavy water as its coolant and neutron moderator

It can be operated without expensive uranium enrichment facilities.

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

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

Answer: (d) 1,2 and 3

Explanation:

In NEWS: Explained: The significance of Kakrapar-3

  • The third unit of the Kakrapar Atomic Power Project (KAPP-3) in Gujarat achieved its ‘first criticality’ — a term that signifies the initiation of a controlled but sustained nuclear fission reaction
  • This is a landmark event in India’s domestic civilian nuclear programme given that KAPP-3 is the country’s first 700 MWe (megawatt electric) unit, and the biggest indigenously developed variant of the Pressurised Heavy Water Reactor (PHWR).
  • The PHWRs, which use natural uranium as fuel and heavy water as moderator, are the mainstay of India’s nuclear reactor fleet.
  • Until now, the biggest reactor size of indigenous design was the 540 MWe PHWR, two of which have been deployed in Tarapur, Maharashtra.
  • The operationalisation of India’s first 700MWe reactor marks a significant scale-up in technology, both in terms of optimisation of its PHWR design — the new 700MWe unit addresses the issue of excess thermal margins — and an improvement in the economies of scale, without significant changes to the design of the 540 MWe reactor. (‘Thermal margin’ refers to the extent to which the operating temperature of the reactor is below its maximum operating temperature.)

About Pressurised Heavy Water Reactor

  • A pressurized heavy water reactor (PHWR) is a nuclear power reactor, commonly using unenriched natural uranium as its fuel, that uses heavy water (deuterium oxide D2O) as its coolant and moderator. Hence statement 1 is correct and Hence statement 2 is correct
  • The heavy water coolant is kept under pressure, allowing it to be heated to higher temperatures without boiling, much as in a typical pressurized water reactor.
  • While heavy water is significantly more expensive than ordinary light water, it yields greatly enhanced neutron economy, allowing the reactor to operate without fuel enrichment facilities (mitigating the additional capital cost of the heavy water) and generally enhancing the ability of the reactor to efficiently make use of alternate fuel cycles.
  • It can be operated without expensive uranium enrichment facilities. Hence statement 3 is correct
  • PHWR can use natural uranium and other fuels, and does so more efficiently than light water reactors

Source: https://indianexpress.com/article/explained/kakrapar-atomic-power-project-third-unit-achieves-first-criticality-india-nuclear-mission-6518946/

9. Consider the following statements regarding Global Environmental Facility

It was established in 1992 at the Rio Earth Summit

It is a financial mechanism that provides grants to developing countries for projects that benefit the global environment and promote sustainable livelihoods in local communities.

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: Another front: On India, Bhutan and China

  • For the third time since early June, China on Tuesday repeated its claim that Bhutan’s eastern boundary was a “disputed” area with Bhutan.
  • Its firstclaim wasat a UNDPled Global Environment Facilityconference on June 23, when the Chinese representatie tried o stop funding for the Sakteng forest reservein Bhutan’s eastern district of Trashigang, which abuts Arunachal Pradesh’s Tawang district. 

About Global Environment Facility (GEF)

  • The Global Environment Facility (GEF) was established on the eve of the 1992 Rio Earth Summit to help tackle our planet’s most pressing environmental problems. Hence statement 1 is correct
  • The Global Environment Facility (GEF) is a financial mechanism that provides grants to developing countries for projects that benefit the global environment and promote sustainable livelihoods in local communities. Hence statement 2 is correct
  • The GEF unites 180 member governments in partnership with international institutions, nongovernmental organizations and the private sector.

The GEF also serves as financial mechanism for the following conventions:

  1. CBD Convention on Biological Diversity
  2. United Nations Framework Convention on Climate Change (UNFCCC)
  3. UN Convention to Combat Desertification (UNCCD)
  4. Stockholm Convention on Persistent Organic Pollutants (POPs)
  5. Minamata Convention on Mercury

Source: https://www.thehindu.com/opinion/editorial/another-front/article32165636.ece

10. With reference to the cultural history of India, the memorizing of chronicles, dynastic histories and epic tales was the profession of who of the following?

Shramana

Parivraajaka

Agrahaarika

Maagadha

Answer: (d) Maagadha

Explanation:

During Gupta period, the memorizing of chronicles, dynastic histories or epic tales was the work of a different group of people, the sutas and magadhas. Hence option (d) is correct