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Daily Prelims Test – 26_October 2020

Consider the following statements regarding PM SVANidhi

1.It was launched by the Ministry of Housing and Urban Affairs.

2.It providing affordable Working Capital loan to street vendors to resume their livelihoods that have been adversely affected due to Covid-19 lockdown.

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: PM Modi to disburse SVANidhi loans to 300,000 street vendors

  • The PM would also virtually interact with the beneficiaries of the scheme under which street vendors can get working capital of up to Rs 10,000 at subsidised rates.
  • Under PM SVANidhi scheme, street vendors can get working capital of up to Rs 10,000 at subsidised rates. Uttar Pradesh has so far received 557,000 applications from vendors, the highest across the country.

About PM SVANidhi

  • The PM Street Vendor’s AtmaNirbhar Nidhi (PM SVANidhi) was launched by the Ministry of Housing and Urban Affairs for providing affordable Working Capital loan to street vendors to resume their livelihoods that have been adversely affected due to Covid-19 lockdown. Hence statements 1 and 2 are correct
  • The duration of the scheme is until March 2022.
  • This scheme targets to benefit over 50 lakh Street Vendors.
  • The Scheme is available for beneficiaries belonging to only those States/UTs which have notified Rules and Scheme under Street Vendors (Protection of Livelihood and Regulation of Street Vending) Act, 2014.
  • Under the scheme, vendors can avail working capital loan of up to ₹10,000, which is repayable in monthly instalments within one year.
  • On timely/early repayment of the loan, an interest subsidy of 7% per annum will be credited to the bank accounts of beneficiaries through Direct Benefit Transfer (DBT) on six-months basis.
  • There will be no penalty on early repayment of loan.
  • The scheme is applicable to vendors, hawkers, thelewalas, rehriwalas, theliphadwalas in different areas/contexts who supply goods and services. Street vendors belonging to the surrounding peri-urban/rural areas are also included.

Source: https://www.hindustantimes.com/india-news/pm-modi-to-disburse-svanidhi-loans-to-300-000-street-vendors-on-tuesday/story-CAGUHVkz0E5nPF5BRCmuyH.html


Red Coral Kukri snake is recently spotted in which of the following state in India?

1.Assam

2.Uttar Pradesh

3.Uttarakhand

4.Tamilnadu

Answer: (c) Uttarakhand

Explanation:

In NEWSRare Red Coral Kukri snake spotted for 3rd time in Uttarakhand, rescued by forest staff

  • Uttarakhand forest department officials rescued the snake from a local resident’s house in US Nagar where it was hiding and released it in the nearby forest area.
  • A very rare Red Coral Kukri snake was spotted in Uttarakhand’s US Nagar district and rescued by forest officials. This is the third time that the rare snake has been spotted in the hill state this year. Hence option (c ) is correct
  • According to forest officials, the rare snake was first spotted in Lakhimpur Kheri area of Uttar Pradesh in 1936 from where it got its scientific name ‘Oligodon kheriensis’.
  • The suffix ‘kukri’ in its name comes from Kukri or curved knife of the Gorkhas as its teeth are curved like the blade of the Kukri.
  • The Red Coral Kukri snake is listed in schedule 4 of the Wildlife Protection Act 1972. It is found in red and bright orange colours. This non-venomous snake is nocturnal and feeds on earthworms, insects and larvae.

Source: https://www.hindustantimes.com/india-news/rare-red-coral-kukri-snake-spotted-for-3rd-time-in-uttarakhand-rescued-by-forest-staff/story-hXwH1i7oS3IXn0sdLmBOeN.html


Consider the following statements

1.Prevention of Insults to National Honour Act, 1971 prohibits any State hoisting its own flag.

2.Flag Code of India, 2002 does not impose prohibitions on a State flag and state flag does not offend the dignity and honour of the national flag

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: ‘NSCN(IM)’s demand for separate flag, constitution being discussed’: Nagaland CM

  • Nagaland chief minister has categorically stated that the central government was having exhaustive discussions with constitutional and legal experts to find ways to enable the Nagas to use a separate flag.

About State flag

  • The existing legal provisions do not prohibit states from having their own flags
  • Under the Constitution, a flag is not enumerated in the Seventh Schedule. However, Article 51A ordains that every citizen shall abide by the Constitution and respect its ideals and institutions, the national flag, and the national anthem.
  • There is no other provision regulating hoisting of flags, either by the States or by the public.
  • The Parliament has framed legislations regulating the hoisting of the national flag: Emblems and Names (Prevention of Improper Use) Act, 1950 and the Prevention of Insults to National Honour Act, 1971.
  • Under the 1950 Act the statutory prohibition is only against “use for any trade, business, calling or profession, or in the title of any patent, or in any trademark of design, any name or emblem specified in the Schedule”.
  • The 1971 Act prohibits insulting the national flag by burning it, mutilating it, defacing it, etc. However, there is no prohibition against any State hoisting its own flag. Hence statement 1 is incorrect
  • Also, the Flag Code of India, 2002 does not impose prohibitions on a State flag.
  • Further, the Code provides space for a State flag as long as it does not offend the dignity and honour of the national flag. Hence statement 2 is correct

Source: https://www.hindustantimes.com/india-news/nscn-im-s-demand-for-separate-flag-constitution-being-discussed-nagaland-cm/story-3xaqtElccbieLRbjdw9xwN.html


What is/are the benefit/benefits for India signed in United State’s Basic Exchange and Cooperation Agreement?

1.Use the United State’s advanced network of geospatial information.

2.Enhance the accuracy of automated systems and weapons

3.Navigation and targeting can be enhanced

4.Refueling and replenishment purposes.

Select the correct options from the given below codes

1 and 4 only

1,2 and 3 only

2 and 3 only

1,2,3 and 4

Answer: (b) 1, 2 and 3 only

Explanation:

In NEWS: Arriving in Delhi today, Pompeo says share vision for an open Indo-Pacific

  • US Secretary of State Michael R Pompeo and Defence Secretary Mark T Esper landing in New Delhi Monday for the 2+2 ministerial meeting with their Indian counterparts, New Delhi and Washington are working to enhance military interaction and cooperation in defence and security — with an eye on increased Chinese belligerence in the region.
  • The two sides are working to conclude the Basic Exchange and Cooperation Agreement (BECA) during the visit.

About Basic Exchange and Cooperation Agreement (BECA)

  • The signing of the Basic Exchange and Cooperation Agreement (BECA) will enable both the countries to share geospatial information on maps and satellites for defense purposes. Geospatial information is required while sailing a ship, flying an aircraft, fighting wars, locating targets, etc.
  • Benefit for India
  • The agreement will allow India to use the United State’s advanced network of geospatial
  • It will also enhance the accuracy of automated systems and weapons like missiles, armed drones, etc.
  • Navigation and targeting can be enhanced with the help of topographical and aeronautical data.
  • With the signing of this agreement, the Indian military will have a high-quality GPS system to navigate and missiles with real-time intelligence will hit the target with pin-point accuracy. Hence option (b) is correct

Source: https://indianexpress.com/article/india/arriving-in-delhi-today-pompeo-says-share-vision-for-an-open-indo-pacific-6883289/


Consider the following statements regarding the Emergency Credit Line Guarantee Scheme (ECLGS)

1.Under the Scheme, 100% guarantee coverage to be provided by National Credit Guarantee Trustee Company Limited (NCGTC) for additional funding of up to Rs. 3 lakh crore to eligible MSMEs

2.The tenure of loan under this scheme is four years with a moratorium period of one year on the principal amount.

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: To maximise liquidity for MSMEs, govt may extend credit scheme deadline

  • The government plans to extend the deadline for Emergency Credit Line Guarantee Scheme (ECLGS) for MSMEs beyond October 31 in case the targeted loan sanction amount of Rs 3 lakh crore is not achieved.
  • Banks have sanctioned 62.52 per cent of the targeted Rs 3 lakh crore under the ECLGS for stressed MSMEs, while disbursements were at 45.38 per cent of the total amount as of October 5, up from 47.7 per cent sanctions and 32.9 per cent disbursements recorded as on August 12.

About ECLGS

  • Under the Scheme, 100% guarantee coverage to be provided by National Credit Guarantee Trustee Company Limited (NCGTC) for additional funding of up to Rs. 3 lakh crore to eligible MSMEs and interested MUDRA borrowers. Hence statement 1 is correct
  • The Scheme would be applicable to all loans sanctioned under GECL Facility during the period from the date of announcement of the Scheme to 31.10.2020.
  • The main objective is to provide an incentive to Member Lending Institutions (MLIs), i.e., Banks, Financial Institutions (FIs) and NBFCs to increase access to, and enable the availability of additional funding facility to MSME borrowers.
  • It aims to provide a 100 per cent guarantee for any losses suffered by them due to non-repayment of the GECL funding by borrowers.
  • Tenor of the loan under Scheme shall be four years with a moratorium period of one year on the principal amount. Hence statement 2 is correct
  • No Guarantee Fee shall be charged by NCGTC from the Member Lending Institutions (MLIs) under the Scheme.
  • Interest rates under the Scheme shall be capped at 9.25% for banks and FIs, and at 14% for NBFCs.

Source: https://indianexpress.com/article/business/economy/to-maximise-liquidity-for-msmes-govt-may-extend-credit-scheme-deadline-6883319/


Consider the following statements regarding Border Road Organization

1.It was conceptualized by Pandit Jawaharlal Nehru

2.It is an infrastructure building organization working under the Ministry of Home affairs.

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: Defence Minister Dedicates BRO Road to the Nation in East Sikkim – A Fillip to Defence Preparedness and Socio-Economic Development

  • Defence Minister Rajnath Singh on Sunday inaugurated ‘Alternate Alignment Gangtok – Nathula Road’ constructed by the Army’s Border Roads Organisation (BRO) in Sikkim, via video conferencing from the Headquarters of 33 Corps in Sukna, Darjeeling
  • NH-310 connecting Gangtok to ‘Nathu La’ is the lifeline of the people bordering eastern Sikkim. By constructing 19.35 km long alternate route of National Highway-310, BRO has fulfilled the aspirations of the Army and residents of East Sikkim

About Border Roads Organisation (BRO):

  • The Border Road Organization is an infrastructure building organization working under the Ministry of Defence. Hence statement 2 is incorrect
  • It develops and maintains road networks in India’s border areas and friendly neighboring countries.
  • It was conceptualized by Pandit Jawaharlal Nehru, formed in 1960, the BRO is engaged in developing means of communication in border areas. Hence statement 1 is correct
  • The organization primarily meets the defense requirement towards infrastructure development of remote Border areas of North & North East states.
  • The infrastructure development includes Roads, Bridges, Highways, Airports, Tunnels, Buildings and other structures.
  • Currently, the organisation maintains operations in twenty-one states, one UT (Andaman and Nicobar Islands), and neighbouring countries such as Afghanistan, Bhutan, Myanmar, and Sri Lanka.

Source: https://www.newindianexpress.com/nation/2020/oct/25/defence-minister-inaugurates-bro-constructed-alternate-alignment-gangtok-nathula-road-2214930.html


 Consider the following statements regarding Polio

1.It is a bacterial disease that destroys the nerve cells present in the spinal.

2.India was declared polio-free in January 2014

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: Explained: Why is World Polio Day observed, where India stands

  • As per the CDC, Afghanistan and Pakistan are the last strongholds of the wild poliovirus. In Pakistan, the number of reported wild poliovirus cases has increased in 2020.
  • October 24 is observed as World Polio Day every year in order to call on countries to stay vigilant in their fight against the disease. As per the WHO, since 1980, the cases of wild poliovirus have decreased by over 99.9 per cent as a result of vaccination efforts made around the world.
  • World Polio Day was established by Rotary International over a decade ago to commemorate the birth of Jonas Salk, who led the first team to develop the vaccine against the disease.

About Polio

  • Polio is a crippling and potentially deadly disease that affects the nervous system
  • Polio also called as Poliomyelitis. It is a viral disease that destroys the nerve cells present in the spinal cord, causing paralysis or muscle weakness to some parts of the body.
  • It is a contagious disease affecting the nervous system and is caused by Picornaviridae – a poliovirus. Hence statement 1 is incorrect
  • The virus is transmitted by person-to-person, spread mainly through the faecal-oral route or, less frequently, by a common vehicle (e.g. contaminated water or food) and multiplies in the intestine, from where it can invade the nervous system and can cause paralysis.
  • India was declared polio-free in January 2014, after three years of zero cases, an achievement widely believed to have been spurred by the successful pulse polio campaign in which all children were administered polio drops. Hence statement 2 is correct
  • As per the CDC, Afghanistan and Pakistan are the two countries that are the last stronghold of the wild poliovirus. In Pakistan, the number of reported wild poliovirus cases has increased in 2020.

Source: https://indianexpress.com/article/explained/explained-why-is-world-polio-day-observed-where-india-stands-6882895/


Consider the following statements regarding National Air Quality Index

1.It is an index of 5 known air pollutants only.

2.It has been developed by the CPCB in consultation with IIT-Kanpur

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: Air quality worsens after Dussehra, drops to ‘very poor’ category

  • Data from the Central Pollution Control Board showed the Capital’s overall air quality index at 343 on a scale of 500.
  • Air quality deteriorates in the national capital with the rise of pollutants in the atmosphere
  • The contribution of stubble burning to Delhi’s PM2.5 concentration was 19% on Sunday, said the Ministry of Earth Sciences’ air quality monitor, SAFAR. It added that the wind direction and the wind speed is favourable to transport the pollutants from the farm fires in the neighbouring regions.

About National Air Quality Index       

  • NAQI was launched in 2014 with outline ‘One Number – One Color -One Description’ for the common man to judge the air quality within his vicinity.
  • It has been launched for monitoring the quality of air in major urban centers across the country on a real-time basis and enhancing public awareness for taking mitigative action.
  • The measurement of air quality is based on eight pollutants, namely, Particulate Matter (PM10), Particulate Matter (PM2.5), Nitrogen Dioxide (NO2), Sulphur Dioxide (SO2), Carbon Monoxide (CO), Ozone (O3), Ammonia (NH3), and Lead (Pb). Hence statement 1 is incorrect
  • AQI has six categories of air quality. These are: Good, Satisfactory, Moderately Polluted, Poor, Very Poor and Severe.
  • It has been launched for 10 cities at present – Delhi, Agra, Kanpur, Lucknow, Varanasi, Faridabad, Ahmedabad, Chennai, Bangalore and Hyderabad.
  • It has been developed by the CPCB in consultation with IIT-Kanpur and an expert group comprising medical and air-quality professionals. Hence statement 2 is correct

Source: https://scroll.in/latest/976772/delhi-air-quality-worsens-after-dussehra-drops-to-very-poor-category


Consider the following statements regarding Indian desert

1.It is second largest subtropical desert in the world.

2.Jaisalmer is located in the Thar Desert.

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: Lost River’ Ran through the Centre of Thar Desert near 172 Thousand Years Ago

  • Researchers have found the evidence of a “lost” river that ran through the central Thar Desert, near Bikaner, as early as 172 thousand years ago, and may have been a life-line to human populations enabling them to inhabit the region
  • The study by researchers from The Max Planck Institute for the Science of Human History in Germany, Anna University in Tamil Nadu, and IISER Kolkata indicates that Stone Age populations lived in a distinctly different Thar Desert landscape
  • The presence of a river running through the central Thar Desert would have offered a life-line to Paleolithic populations, and potentially an important corridor for migrations

About Thar Desert

  • The Thar Desert, also referred to as the Great Indian Desert, is a large arid region in the northwestern part of the Indian subcontinent. The desert stretches its area of 200,000 km2 (77,000 sq mi) and forms a natural boundary between India and Pakistan. It is the world’s 17th largest desert, and the world’s 9th largest subtropical desert. Hence statements 1 is incorrect
  • About 85% of the Thar Desert is located within India, rest 15% lies in Pakistan
  • 60% of the desert lies in the Indian state of Rajasthan, and it spreads into other the states of Gujarat, Punjab, and Haryana, and the Pakistani province of Sindh
  • Jaisalmer is located in the heart of the Thar Desert. The temperatures reaches its extreme in both summer and winter. The maximum temperature in summer is 49ºC and minimum is 25ºC. In winter the maximum temperature is 23ºC and minimum temperature is 5ºC. The average rainfall is 210 mm. The highest temperature recorded is 50ºC. Hence statement 2 is correct

Source: https://www.firstpost.com/tech/science/lost-river-ran-through-the-centre-of-thar-desert-near-172-thousand-years-ago-8952021.html


ith reference to the food chains in ecosystems, which of the following kinds of organism is/are known as decomposer organism/organisms?

1.Virus

2.Fungi

3.Bacteria

Select the correct answer using the codes given below:

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

Answer: (b) 2 and 3only

Explanation:

  • Decomposers: Also called saprotrophs.  These are mostly bacteria and fungi that feed on dead decomposed. Hence 2 and 3 correct.
  • Viruses aren’t decomposers.