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1. With respect to “Triple-Dip” La Nina, consider the following statements

  1. It is a multiyear cooling of the surface temperature of the equatorial Atlantic Ocean
  2. It is a period in which the La Nina period lasts for up to three consecutive winters

Which of the statements given above is/are incorrect?

  1. 1 only
  2. 2 only
  3. Both 1 and 2
  4. Neither 1 nor 2

Answer: (b) 2 only

Explanation:

In NEWS: The ‘triple dip’ La Niña, and its likely impact in India

  • The ongoing La Niña phase of the equatorial Pacific Ocean has just been predicted to persist for at least another six months, making it one of the longest ever La Niña episodes in recorded history.
  • It is also only the third episode since 1950 to stretch into a third year.
  • This is likely to have wide-ranging implications for weather events across the world in the coming months, and can potentially aggravate both floods and droughts in different regions.
  • On August 31, the World Meteorological Organization (WMO) stated that La Nina would span three consecutive northern hemisphere winters for the first time this century, resulting in a ‘triple dip’ La Nina.
  • This is likely to have far-reaching consequences for weather events around the world in the coming months, potentially exacerbating both floods and droughts in various regions.

About ‘triple dip’ La Nina

  • ‘Triple Dip’ La nina is a period in which the La nina period lasts for up to three consecutive winters. Hence, statement 2 is correct
  • It results in multiyear cooling of the equatorial Pacific Ocean’s surface temperature. Hence, statement 1 is incorrect
  • For example, the current La nina episode began in September 2020, has lasted 24 months, and is expected to last another six months, classifying it as a ‘triple dip’ La Nia.
  • According to WMO, the current La Nina is projected to span three consecutive northern hemisphere winters. It began in September 2020.
  • If it continues for the next six months, it will be the first “triple-dip” La Nina event of the 21st century, WMO says.
  • It is exceptional to have three consecutive years with a la Nina event.
  • Its cooling influence is temporarily slowing the rise in global temperatures – but it will not halt or reverse the long-term warming trend.

Source: https://indianexpress.com/article/explained/explained-climate/india-monsoon-the-triple-dip-la-nina-8162945/

2. Consider the following statements regarding Resilience and Sustainability Trust

  1. It will help low-income and vulnerable middle-income countries build resilience to external shocks and ensure sustainable growth
  2. It is established by the World Bank

Which of the statements 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: SBI asks exporters to trade with Bangladesh in rupee, taka: Report

  • Bangladesh’s $416-billion economy is battling rising prices of energy and food as the Russia-Ukraine conflict widens its current account deficit, and dwindling foreign exchange forces it to turn to global lenders such as the International Monetary Fund (IMF).

About Resilience and Sustainability Trust

  • On April 13, 2022, the Executive Board of the International Monetary Fund (IMF) approved the establishment of the Resilience and Sustainability Trust (RST) with effect from May 1, 2022.
  • The IMF’s Resilience and Sustainability Trust (RST) will help low-income and vulnerable middle-income countries build resilience to external shocks and ensure sustainable growth, contributing to their longer-term balance of payments stability. Hence, statement 1 is correct and statement 2 is incorrect.
  • It will complement the IMF’s existing lending toolkit by providing longer-term affordable financing to address longer-term challenges, including climate change and pandemic preparedness.
  • RST could fill the critical gap in the international climate finance architecture when it comes to helping countries overcome the economic and financial impacts of climate change
  • An RST would provide financial support and help facilitate country transitions to green, resilient economies, without leaving entire communities behind in the process.
  • The IMF’s income-based criteria fails to acknowledge that many countries who are not eligible for concessional finance also need support. RST is an attempt to rectify such exclusion errors.
  • Access will be based on the countries’ reforms, strength and debt sustainability considerations and capped at the lower of 150 percent of quota or SDR 1 billion.
  • The loans will have a 20-year maturity and a 10½-year grace period, with borrowers paying an interest rate with a modest margin over the three-month SDR rate.

Source: https://www.business-standard.com/article/international/sbi-asks-exporters-to-trade-with-bangladesh-in-rupee-taka-report-122091900869_1.html

3. Consider the following statements regarding Asia-Pacific Institute for Broadcasting Development

  1. It was established under the auspices of the United Nations Educational, Scientific and Cultural Organisation
  2. It is mandated to achieve a vibrant and cohesive electronic media environment in the Asia-Pacific region through policy and resource development.

Which of the statements 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: Union Minister Anurag Thakur addresses meeting of Asia Pacific Institute for Broadcasting Development-AIBD

  • Union Information and Broadcasting Minister Anurag Thakur has that the COVID-19 crisis has thrown up challenges as well as provided an opportunity not just to re-invent journalism, but to redefine the media as a trusted source of news and information.
  • Addressing a meeting of the Asia Pacific Institute for Broadcasting Development-AIBD in New Delhi in his personal opinion the biggest threat to mainstream media is not from new age digital platforms, but rather the mainstream media channel itself.

About Asia-Pacific Institute for Broadcasting Development

  • The Asia-Pacific Institute for Broadcasting Development (AIBD) was established in August 1977 under the auspices of the United Nations Educational, Scientific and Cultural Organisation (UNESCO). Hence, statement 1 is correct.
  • It is a unique regional inter-governmental organisation servicing countries of the United Nations Economic and Social Commission for Asia and the Pacific (UN-ESCAP) in the field of electronic media development.
  • It is hosted by the Government of Malaysia and the secretariat is located in Kuala Lumpur.
  • The AIBD is mandated to achieve a vibrant and cohesive electronic media environment in the Asia-Pacific region through policy and resource development. Hence, statement 2 is correct.
  • The International Telecommunication Union (ITU), the United Nations Development Programme (UNDP), and the United Nations Educational, Scientific and Cultural Organisation (UNESCO) are the founding organisations of the Institute and they are non-voting members of the General Conference.
  • The AIBD currently has 26 Full Members (countries), represented by 43 organisations, and 50 Affiliate Members (organisations) with a total membership of 93 representing 46 countries and regions and over 50 partners in Asia, Pacific, Europe, Africa, Arab States and North America.

Source: https://newsonair.com/2022/09/20/union-minister-anurag-thakur-addresses-meeting-of-asia-pacific-institute-for-broadcasting-development-aibd-in-new-delhi/

4. Consider the following statements regarding RhODIS

  1. It is a wildlife forensics tool that was specially developed for investigating wildlife crime cases.
  2. It was launched in 2016 by the Environment Ministry, Wildlife Institute of India and WWF-India

Which of the statements 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: World Rhinos Day: 2,613 reasons to cheer for

Every year, World Rhino Day is celebrated on September 22. It was first observed in 2011, after the World Wildlife Fund announced the decision in 2010.

About Rhino DNA Index System (RhODIS)

  • Kaziranga National Park is the first National Park in India to have been equipped with satellite phones.
  • Rhino DNA Index System (RhODIS) is a wildlife forensics tool that was specially developed for investigating wildlife crime cases. Hence, statement 1 is correct.
  • The RhODIS India programme was launched in 2016 by the Environment Ministry, Wildlife Institute of India, WWF-India, and Forest Department of Assam, West Bengal, Uttar Pradesh. Hence, statement 2 is correct.
  • The tool will be used in the collection of each individual rhino’s unique DNA profile and developing a database which can be referenced when producing legal evidence in cases of rhino poaching.
  • The goal is for all rhinos to be on the system. This will deter poachers and assist in forensic prosecutions.

Source: https://newsonair.com/2022/09/22/world-rhinos-day-2613-reasons-to-cheer-for/

5. Consider the following statements regarding Greater One-Horned Rhinos

  1. It is commonly found in Nepal, Bhutan and Assam.
  2. It is confined to the tall grasslands and forests in the foothills of the Himalayas.
  3. In India, rhinos are found in Dudhwa National Park, Manas National Park and Gorumara National Park.

Which of the statements 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: (d) 1,2 and 3

Explanation:

In NEWS: World Rhinos Day: 2,613 reasons to cheer for

  • Every year, World Rhino Day is celebrated on September 22. It was first observed in 2011, after the World Wildlife Fund announced the decision in 2010.
  • The Day aims to create awareness about all the five rhino species – Sumatran Rhino, Greater one-horned Rhino, Black Rhino, Javan Rhino, and White Rhino.

The Great Indian Rhino

  • India is home to Greater One-Horned Rhinos, the largest rhino species.
  • It is identified by a single black horn about 8-25 inches long and a grey-brown hide with skin folds, which gives it an armor-plated appearance.
  • Kaziranga National Park in Assam is home to two-thirds of the world’s rhino population.
  • According to the 14th Rhino Census conducted at the National Park in March 2022, there has been an increase of 200 rhinos from 2018 when it was 2,413.
  • Listed in IUCN’s Red List, it comes under the vulnerable category. Schedule I of WPA, 1972 protects the animal.
  • The Great one horned rhino is commonly found in Nepal, Bhutan, Pakistan and in Assam, India. Hence, statement 1 is correct.
  • It is confined to the tall grasslands and forests in the foothills of the Himalayas. Hence, statement 2 is correct.
  • The Indian Rhinoceros can run at speeds of up to 25 mph (40 km/h) for short periods of time and is also an excellent swimmer.
  • It has also been included in CITES Appendix I. In India, rhinos are found in several protected areas – Dudhwa National Park, Manas National Park, Katerniaghat Wildlife Sanctuary, Kaziranga National Park, Orang National Park, Pabitora Wildlife Sanctuary Jaldapara National Park, and Gorumara National Park. Hence, statement 3 is correct.

Source: https://newsonair.com/2022/09/22/world-rhinos-day-2613-reasons-to-cheer-for/

6. Consider the following statements regarding PM FME scheme

  1. It is an initiative of Ministry of Food Processing Industry under the Aatmanirbhar Bharat Abhiyan
  2. It aims to enhance the competitiveness of existing individual micro-enterprises in the unorganized segment of the food processing industry and promote formalization of the sector

Which of the statements 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: Union Ministry of Food Processing, Agriculture launches Convergence Portal

  • Union Ministry of Food Processing Industries today jointly launched a Convergence Portal between Agriculture Infrastructure Fund (AIF), Pradhan Mantri Formalisation of Micro Food Processing Enterprises (PMFME) scheme, and Pradhan Mantri Kisan Sampada Yojana (PMKSY) at Krishi Bhawan, New Delhi.
  • The convergence portal was launched in the presence of Union Agriculture Minister

About PM FME scheme

  • Ministry of Food Processing Industry (MoFPI) has launched the PM FME scheme under the Aatmanirbhar Bharat Abhiyan. Hence, statement 1 is correct.
  • It aims to enhance the competitiveness of existing individual micro-enterprises in the unorganized segment of the food processing industry and promote formalization of the sector. Hence, statement 2 is correct.
  • The scheme to be implemented over a period of five years from 2020-21 to 2024-25 with a total outlay of Rupees 10,000 crore.
  • The scheme has a special focus on supporting Groups engaged in Agri-food processing such as Farmer Producer Organizations (FPOs), Self Help Groups (SHGs) and Producers Cooperatives along their entire value chain. Ministry of Food Processing Industries (MoFPI), in partnership with the State/UT Governments, will provide financial, technical and business support for upgradation of existing micro food processing enterprises.

Source: https://newsonair.gov.in/News?title=Union-Ministry-of-Food-Processing%2c-Agriculture-launches-Convergence-Portal&id=448104

7. Prompt Corrective Action (PCA) framework is related to which of the following statement?

  1. Banking Reform
  2. Paper Industry
  3. Marine Production
  4. Service Sector

Answer: (a) Banking Reform

Explanation:

In NEWS: RBI removes Central Bank of India from PCA framework after more than 5 yrs

  • Reserve Bank of India removed the Central Bank of India from the Prompt Corrective Action (PCA) framework on complying with parameters like net non-performing assets (net NPAs) and capital ratios.
  • RBI had placed Central Bank under PCA in June 2017 due to high net NPAs and negative return on assets. Central Bank was the last of the public sector lenders to come out of PCA.
  • Indian Overseas Bank and UCO Bank were removed from the framework last September.

About Prompt Corrective Action (PCA) framework

  • The RBI introduced the PCA framework in 2002 as a structured early-intervention mechanism for banks that become undercapitalised due to poor asset quality, or vulnerable due to loss of profitability. Hence option (a) is correct
  • The framework was reviewed in 2017 based on the recommendations of the working group of the Financial Stability and Development Council on Resolution Regimes for Financial Institutions in India and the Financial Sector Legislative Reforms Commission.
  • The RBI has specified certain regulatory trigger points with respect to three parameters, i.e., capital-to-risk weighted assets ratio (CRAR), net non-performing assets (NPA) and return on assets (RoA) for the initiation of the process.
  • In the past, IDBI Bank, Indian Overseas Bank and Central Bank of India were put under the PCA framework.

Source: https://www.business-standard.com/article/finance/rbi-takes-central-bank-of-india-out-of-pca-framework-122092001068_1.html

8. Consider the following statements regarding Central Bureau of Investigation

  1. It was set up based on the Santhanam committee recommendation.
  2. It derives its powers from the Delhi Special Police Establishment Act, 1946.
  3. It coordinates investigations on behalf of Interpol Member countries.

Which of the statements 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: (d) 1, 2 and 3

Explanation:

In NEWS: Opposition leaders in CBI net: History of the struggle to secure agency’s independence

  • The SC has called the CBI a caged parrot, and CJIs have expressed doubts over its credibility and said it is no longer trusted. Attempts to secure its independence have been opposed or overturned by successive governments.

About Central Bureau of Investigation

  • The Central Bureau of Investigation (CBI), functioning under Dept. of Personnel, Ministry of Personnel, Pension & Public Grievances, Government of India, is the premier investigating police agency in India.
  • It is an elite force playing a major role in preservation of values in public life and in ensuring the health of the national economy.
  • It was set up by the Government of India vide Resolution in 1964 on the recommendation of the Santhanam Committee. Hence, statement 2 is correct.
  • It is the nodal police agency in India, which coordinates investigation on behalf of Interpol Member countries. Hence, statement 3 is correct.
  • It is not a statutory body; it derives its powers from the Delhi Special Police Establishment Act, 1946. Hence, statement 1 is correct.
  • It needs consent of a state to probe offences in the state’s jurisdiction, a general consent is given to the agency so that consent is not required for every individual case.
  • CBI cannot investigate even a central government employee stationed in a state without the consent of the state government.
  • Its important role is to prevent corruption and maintain integrity in administration. It works under the supervision of the CVC (Central Vigilance Commission) in matters pertaining to the Prevention of Corruption Act, 1988. 

Source: https://indianexpress.com/article/explained/corruption-cases-the-cbis-uneasy-history-8160916/

9. Consider the following statements regarding Shrinkflation

  1. It occurs when goods shrink in size but consumers pay the same price.
  2. It can lead to customer frustration and deterioration of consumer sentiment towards a producer’s brand.

Which of the statements 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: Shrinkflation

  • Shrinkflation refers to the tampering of a product while maintaining retail price
  • For example, reducing the scoops of ice cream in a container or reducing the number of chips in a packet would count as shrinkflation.
  • In other words, shrinkflation occurs when goods shrink in size but consumers pay the same price. It occurs when manufacturers downsize products to offset higher production costs but keep retail prices same. Hence, statement 1 is correct.
  • Shrinkflation occurs when materials or ingredients used to make products become more expensive and when there is intense competition in the market.
  • As a result, instead of raising prices, they might just give you less of the product so as to maintain their profit margins. Companies think that they can keep profits rolling in by keeping the change under the radar — all while the consumer is unaware.
  • Shrinkflation can occur in different ways. It’s not just the weight that will be compromised as it is not uncommon for companies to look for alternative options.
  • Though downsizing products reduces costs for manufacturers, it is an unfair practice toward consumers. It can lead to a loss of trust if companies fail to properly communicate with them.
  • Shrinkflation can lead to customer frustration and deterioration of consumer sentiment towards a producer’s brand. Hence, statement 2 is correct.

Source: https://www.thehindu.com/specials/text-and-context/shrinkflation/article65918802.ece/amp/

10. With reference to “Blockchain Technology”, consider the following statements: (2020)

  1. It is a public ledger that everyone can inspect, but which no single user controls.
  2. The structure and design of blockchain is such that all the data in it are about cryptocurrency only.
  3. Applications that depend on basic features of blockchain can be developed without anybody’s permission.

Which of the statements given above is/are correct?

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

Answer: (d) 1 and 3 only

Explanation:

  • A blockchain is a form of public ledger, which is a series (or chain) of blocks on which transaction details are recorded and stored on a public database after suitable authentication and verification by the designated network participants. A public ledger can be viewed but cannot be controlled by any single user. Hence, statement 1 is correct.
  • Blockchain technology can be used in property exchanges, bank transactions, healthcare, smart contracts, supply chain, and even in voting for a candidate. Hence, statement 2 is not correct.
  • Although cryptocurrency is regulated and needs approval of the central authorities, blockchain technology is not only about cryptocurrency. It can have various uses, and applications based on basic features of the technology can be developed without anybody’ approval. Hence, statement 3 is correct.