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Daily Prelims Test – 23_June

1.Consider the following statements

  • Article 213 empowers the Governor to promulgate Ordinance
  • The ordinance shall be promulgated only when both legislative assembly and legislative council are not in session
  • The Governor has no powers to withdraw the ordinance.

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

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

Answer: (c) 1 and 2 only

Explanation:

In NEWS: Notices to government over pension, salaries Ordinance

  • Telangana High Court issued notices to the State government in a writ petition filed by a retired forest officer challenging an Ordinance empowering government to defer payment of pension and salaries of retired and serving employees respectively.
  • As per the petition the Ordinance was against the provisions of the Disaster Management Act-2005.

About 213:

  • The Article empowers the Governor to promulgate Ordinance, during recess of legislature, if circumstances exist which render it necessary for him to takeimmediate action.  Hence statement 1 is correct
  • The ordinance shall be promulgated only when both legislative assembly and legislative council (where applicable) are not in sessionHence statement 2 is correct
  • The ordinance has to be passed by the legislative assembly when it commences within 6 weeks, otherwise the ordinance will cease to exist.
  • The Governor has powers to withdraw the ordinance. Hence statement 3 is incorrect

Source: https://www.thehindu.com/news/national/telangana/notices-to-government-over-pension-salaries-ordinance/article31871983.ece

2.Consider the following statements regarding Horseshoe crab

  • It is one of the oldest marine living fossils whose origin date back to 445 million years before the dinosaurs existed
  • It is largely found in Coastline of Tamil Nadu and Kerala

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: International Horseshoe Crab Day: Species under grave threat in Odisha

  • Horseshoe crabs face an uncertain future in Odisha, their largest habitat in India, even as the world gets ready to celebrate the first-ever ‘International Horseshoe Crab Day’ on June 20, 2020.
  • The International Union for Conservation of Nature had decided to observe the day in 2019 at Qinzhou City in China.
  • The aim behind the day is to generate greater awareness for these ancient creatures and help in their conservation.

About Horseshoe Crab

  • The horseshoe crab is one of the oldest marine living fossils whose origin date back to 445 million years before the dinosaurs existed . Hence statement 1 is correct
  • Horseshoe crabs are marine and brackish water arthropods. They are not true crabs, which are crustaceans.
  • The crabs are represented by four extant species in the world. Out of the four, two species are distributed along the northeast coast of India. Only two confirmed species of HSC are known to occur inIndia, restricted between Ganga and Godavari estuary along Odisha, West Bengal and Andhra Pradesh coastsHence statement 2 is incorrect
  • Only T gigas species of the horseshoe crab is found along Balasore coast of Odisha.
  • The horseshoe crab was included on September 9, 2009 in the Schedule IV of the Wild (Life) Protection Act, 1972, under which, the catching and killing of a horseshoe crab is an offence.
  • IUCN status: Data Deficient
  • Horseshoe crabs in Odisha are in danger as poachers kill them for their meat, that is popularly believed to have aphrodisiac qualities.
  • The blood of horseshoe crabs, which is blue in colour, is used for detection of bacterial endotoxins in medical applications.
  • The crabs are also commonly used as bait and in fertilizer.

Source: https://www.downtoearth.org.in/news/wildlife-biodiversity/international-horseshoe-crab-day-species-under-grave-threat-in-odisha-71874

3.Socotra Island is recently seen in news, is located in which of the following sea?

  • Red Sea
  • Arabian Sea
  • Caspian Sea
  • Black sea

Answer: (b) Arabian Sea

Explanation:

In NEWS: Yemeni separatists seize island of Socotra from Saudi-backed government

Yemeni separatists have seized control of the island of Socotra in the Arabian Sea, deposing its governor and driving out the forces of the Saudi-backed government, which condemned the action as a coup

About Socotra Island:

  • Socotra Island lies some 240 kilometres (150 mi) east off the coast of Cape Guardafui and 380 kilometres (240 mi) south of the Arabian PeninsulaHence option (b) is correct
  • The island of Socotra is part of an archipelago in the Indian Ocean.
  • It is so isolated that a third of its plant life is found nowhere else on the planet.
  • The territory is located near major shipping routes and is officially part of Yemen, and had long been a subdivision of the Aden Governorate.
  • There is a dispute between Yemen and Somalia’s government over the island’s sovereignty.
  • Socotra Archipelago, in the northwest Indian Ocean near the Gulf of Aden, is 250 km long and comprises four islands and two rocky islets which appear as a prolongation of the Horn of Africa.
  • The island was recognised by the United Nations Educational, Scientific and Cultural Organization (UNESCO) as a world natural heritage site in July 2008.
  • The European Union has supported such a move, calling on both UNESCO and International Organisation of Protecting Environment to classify the island archipelago among the environmental heritages.
  • Indians have been residing in the Socotra archipelago since ancient times and the name Socotra is itself derived from Dvipa Sukhadhara in India’s Sanskrit.

Source: https://www.theguardian.com/world/2020/jun/21/yemen-separatists-seize-island-of-socotra-from-saudi-backed-government

4.Consider the following statements regarding Computer Emergency Response Team (CERT-In)

  • It aims to respond to computer security incidents, report on vulnerabilities and promote effective IT security practices throughout the country.
  • It is a functional organization of the Ministry of Electronics and Information Technology

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: Govt’s cyber watchdog warns of large-scale phishing attack today

  • CERT-In said that the “phishing campaign is expected to impersonate government agencies, departments and trade associations who have been tasked to oversee the disbursement of the government fiscal aid”.
  • Phishing is a cybercrime where a target is contacted by email, telephone or text message by someone posing as a legitimate institution.
  • It is an attempt to lure the victim into providing sensitive data, such as personally identifiable information, banking, and credit card details, and passwords.

About Computer Emergency Response Team (CERT-In)

  • CERT-In (the Indian Computer Emergency Response Team) is a government-mandated information technology (IT) security organization.
  • CERT-In was established in 2004 as a functional organisation of the Ministry of Electronics and Information Technology. Hence statement 2 is correct
  • The purpose of CERT-In is to respond to computer security incidents, report on vulnerabilities and promote effective IT security practices throughout the countryHence statement 1 is correct

In the recent Information Technology Amendment Act 2008, CERT-In has been designated to serve as the national agency to perform the following functions in the area of cyber security:

  • Collection, analysis and dissemination of information on cyber incidents.
  • Forecast and alerts of cyber security incidents
  • Emergency measures for handling cyber security incidents
  • Coordination of cyber incident response activities.
  • Issue guidelines, advisories, vulnerability notes and whitepapers relating to information security practices, procedures, prevention, response and reporting of cyber incidents.
  • Such other functions relating to cyber security as may be prescribed

Source: https://indianexpress.com/article/india/watchdog-warns-of-large-scale-phishing-attack-6468696/

5.Consider the following statements regarding decarbonising Transport in India project

  • It will be jointly launch by the NITI Aayog and International Transport Forum
  • It will design a tailor-made transport emissions assessment framework for 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: (c) Both 1 and 2

Explanation:

In NEWS: Decarbonising Transport: International Project to Develop Pathway to Low-CO2 Mobility for India

  • NITI Aayog in collaboration with International Transport Forum (ITF) will launch the “Decarbonising Transport in India” project , with the intention todevelop a pathway towards a low-carbon transport system for India. Hence statement 1 is correct
  • The online event will inform transport and climate stakeholders in India about planned project activities.
  • It will also offer the opportunity to provide inputs regarding India’s transport challenges and how they relate to CO2 reduction ambitions. The discussion will help to focus the project further on India’s specific needs and circumstances.
  • The “Decarbonising Transport in India” project will design a tailor-made transport emissions assessment framework for India.Hence statement 2 is correct 
  • It will provide the government with a detailed understanding of current and future transport activity and the related CO2 emissions as a basis for their decision-making.
  • The India project is carried out in the wider context of the International Transport Forum’s “Decarbonising Transport” initiative. It is part of the “Decarbonising Transport in Emerging Economies” (DTEE) family of projects, which supports transport decarbonisation across different world regions

Source: https://pib.gov.in/PressReleasePage.aspx?PRID=1633286

6.Consider the following statements regarding International Transport Forum (ITF)

  • It is an inter-governmental organisation within the World Tourism Organization
  • It is the only global body that covers all transport modes
  • India is not a member of this forum

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

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

Answer: (b) 2 only

Explanation:

In NEWS: Decarbonising Transport: International Project to Develop Pathway to Low-CO2 Mobility for India

  • India has been a member of ITF, anintergovernmental organisation for transport policy, since 2008. Hence statement 3 is incorrect
  • The International Transport Forum at the OECD is an intergovernmental organisation with 60 member countries. It acts as a  think tank for transport policy and organises the Annual Summit of transport ministers. Hence statement 1 is incorrect
  • ITF is the only global body that covers all transport modes. Hence statement 2 is correct
  • Mission: to foster a deeper understanding of the role of transport in economic growth, environmental sustainability and social inclusion and to raise the public profile of transport policy.
  • It acts as a think tank for transport policy issues and organises the annual global summit of transport ministers. The ITF’s motto is “Global dialogue for better transport”.

Source: https://pib.gov.in/PressReleasePage.aspx?PRID=1633286

7.Consider the following statements regarding Directorate of Revenue Intelligence

  • It is the apex anti-smuggling agency of India working under the Ministry of Finance
  • It is tasked with detecting and curbing smuggling of contraband, including drug trafficking and illicit international trade in wildlife and environmentally sensitive items, as well as combating commercial frauds related to international trade and evasion of Customs duty.

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: DRI busts syndicate smuggling exotic macaws from Bangladesh

  • The Directorate of Revenue Intelligence (DRI) has busted a wildlife smuggling syndicate with the arrest of two persons and seizure of a consignment of exotic macaws which had been smuggled from Bangladesh to Kolkata and was on its way to Bengaluru.
  • The joint operation was carried out in coordination with the Wildlife Crime Control Bureau (WCCB) and the Customs Department at the Kolkata airport.
  • The exotic birds in the cargo were identified as hacinth macaw, pesquet’s parrot, severe macaw and hahn’s macaw.
  • West Bengal and northeast India are vulnerable to cross-border wildlife smuggling because of their proximity to the Bangladesh and Myanmar borders, and to Thailand.
  • Protection available for seized macaws
  • They are protected under the Convention on International Trade in Endangered Species of Wild Fauna and Flora (CITES), with hyacinth macaw being accorded the highest protection.
  • Illegally imported birds are confiscated under Section 111 of the Customs Act, read with the CITES provisions and the Foreign Trade Policy.
  • Also, Sections 48 and 49 of the Wildlife Protection Act prohibit trade or commerce in wild animals, animal articles, or trophies. The accused can be sentenced to seven years of jail for the offense.

About Directorate of Revenue Intelligence

  • The Directorate of Revenue Intelligence is the apex anti-smuggling agency of India, working under the Central Board of Indirect Taxes & Customs, Ministry of Finance, Government of India. Hence statement 1 is correct
  • It is tasked with detecting and curbing smuggling of contraband, including drug trafficking and illicit international trade in wildlife and environmentally sensitive items, as well as combating commercialfrauds related to international trade and evasion of Customs duty. Hence statement 2 is correct
  • DRI enforces the provisions of the Customs Act, 1962 and over fifty other allied Acts including the Arms Act, NDPS Act, COFEPOSA, Wildlife Act, Antiquities Act etc.
  • DRI undertakes collection, collation, analysis and dissemination of intelligence relating to smuggling, carries out investigations, adjudication of cases and prosecution of the arrested persons.
  • The DRI has also been designated as the lead agency for S-CORD, the national Anti-smuggling co-ordination centre

Source: https://www.thehindu.com/news/national/other-states/dri-busts-syndicate-smuggling-exotic-macaws-from-bangladesh/article31890379.ece#:~:text=The%20Directorate%20of%20Revenue%20Intelligence,on%20its%20way%20to%20Bengaluru.

8.Consider the following statements regarding National Service Scheme (NSS)

  • The sole aim of the NSS is to provide hands on experience to young students in delivering community service.
  • It is being implemented by the Ministry of Youth Affairs and Sports

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: Promote people power against COVID-19

  • Young volunteers can be equipped with a thermometer and a fingertip pulse oximeter. Each volunteer can visit 50 allotted houses daily, for case detection and follow-up. They should also act as the home isolated person’s link with the health system for efficient transfer and hospitalisation if symptoms worsen.

Where will we get such easily trainable, disciplined and community-oriented young persons?

  • The National Service Scheme functions under the Ministry of Youth Affairs. Started in 1969, to commemorate Mahatma Gandhi’s birth centenary, the NSS can demonstrate its value as we celebrate the completion of 150 years of his birth. The National Cadet Corps involves college students mentored by the Defence Ministry.

About National Service Scheme (NSS)

  • National Service Scheme (NSS) was launched during 1969, the birth centenary year of Mahatma Gandhi, in 37 universities involving 40000 students.
  • NSS is an extension dimension to the higher education system to orient the student youth to community service while they are studying in educational Hence statement 1 is correct
  • It is being implemented by the Ministry of Youth Affairs and Sports, Government of India. Hence statement 2 is correct
  • It provides opportunity to the student youth of 11th & 12th Class of schools at +2 Board level and student youth of Technical Institution, Graduate & Post Graduate at colleges and University level of India to take part in various government led community service activities & programmes.
  • The motto or watchword of the National Service Scheme is “NOT ME BUT YOU”.
  • The sole aim of the NSS is to provide hands on experience to young students in delivering community service. Since inception of the NSS in the year 1969, the number of students strength increased from 40,000 to over 3.8 million up to the end of March 2018 students in various universities, colleges and Institutions of higher learning have volunteered to take part in various community service programmes.

Source: https://www.thehindu.com/opinion/op-ed/promote-people-power-against-covid-19/article31892460.ece

9.The word ‘Coccolithophores’ is sometimes mentioned in media in reference to

  • a geological period in the history of Indian subcontinent
  • fossils of a kind of dinosaurs
  • an early human species
  • an ancient marine alga

Answer: (d) an ancient marine alga

Explanation:

In NEWS: Ancient algae play a role in building a healthy marine ecosystem: Study

  • A study of a microscopic ancient marine algae (Coccolithophores) led by the National Centre for Polar and Ocean Research (NCPOR) has found thatthere is a decrease in the concentration of oceanic calcium carbonate (CaCO3) in the southern Indian ocean. Hence option (d) is correct
  • This decrease in CaCO3 is attributed to the increase in the concentration of another single-celled algae known as diatoms. This, in turn, will affect the growth and skeleton structure of coccolithophores, with potential significance for the world ocean ecosystem.
  • Coccolithophores are single-celled algae living in the upper layers of the world’s oceans. They have been playing a key role in marine ecosystems and the global carbon cycle for millions of years. Coccolithophores calcify marine phytoplankton that produces up to 40 per cent of open ocean calcium carbonate and responsible for 20 per cent of the global net marine primary productivity.  
  • Coccolithophores build exoskeletons from individual CaCO3 plates consisting of chalk and seashells building the tiny plates on their exterior. Though carbon dioxide is produced during the formation of these plates, coccolithophores help in removing it from the atmosphere and ocean by consuming it during photosynthesis. At equilibrium, coccolithophores absorb more carbon dioxide than they produce, which is beneficial for the ocean ecosystem.

Source: https://www.downtoearth.org.in/news/climate-change/ancient-algae-play-a-role-in-building-a-healthy-marine-ecosystem-study-71909

10.In a given year in India, official poverty lines are higher in some States than in others because

(a) poverty rates vary from State to State

(b) price levels vary from State to State

(c) Gross State Product varies from State to State

(d) quality of public distribution varies from State to State

Answer: (b) price levels vary from State to State

Explanation:

  • The Planning Commission methodology for estimating poverty at national and state level was regarded by some as inappropriate in giving a representative picture of the incidence of poverty in the country.

 The main points of the criticism were:

(a) the adjustment procedure;

(b) the choice of deflators to represent price changes in the poverty line;

(c) application of the same poverty line in all the states, which imply the absence of price differentials across the statesHence option (b) is correct

(d) use of a fixed consumption basket over time

(e) the uniform consumption basket for all the states.