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Syllabus GS II Development

1. With respect to kala-azar, consider the following statements

  1. It is a protozoan parasitic disease
  2. It is spread by Aedes Aegypti
  3. It is endemic in Bihar, Jharkhand, Uttar Pradesh and West Bengal

Which of the above statements are correct?

  • 1 and 2 only
  • 2 and 3 only
  • 1 and 3 only
  • 1, 2 and 3

Answer: (d) 1,2 and 3

Explanation:

In News: Explained: Kala Azar or Black fever disease detected in West Bengal

What is kala-azar or black fever disease?

  • Kala-azar or Visceral Leishmaniasis is a protozoan parasitic disease, spread by sandfly bites. Sandflies are brown in colour and have hairs on their bodies. Hence statement 1 is correct.
  • The flies are infected with the parasite called ‘leishmania donovani’.
  • The vector sandfly is known to live in cracks and crevices of muddy houses, especially in dark and humid corners.
  • Leishmaniasis is also linked to environmental changes such as deforestation, and urbanisation, according to WHO.
  • The disease is endemic in Bihar, Jharkhand, Uttar Pradesh and West Bengal. An estimated 165.4 million people are at risk, according to data from the National Centre for Vector Borne Disease Control Programme.Hence statement 3 is correct.
  • Irregular bouts of fever over many days, weight loss, enlargement of the spleen and liver, and anaemia are known symptoms.
  • Leishmaniasis is a treatable and curable disease
  • Anti-leishmanial medicines are available for treatment. Vector control is also recommended by the WHO

Source: https://indianexpress.com/article/explained/everyday-explainers/explained-kala-azar-black-fever-disease-west-bengal-8033609/

2. Consider the following statements regarding Rice Cultivation

  1. India is the world’s biggest exporter of rice
  2. It is both a kharif and rabi season crop
  3. West Bengal is the largest rice producer followed by Uttar Pradesh and Punjab

Which of the above statements are correct?

  • 1 and 2 only
  • 2 and 3 only
  • 1 and 3 only
  • 1, 2 and 3

Answer: (d) 1,2 and 3

Explanation:

In News: Explained: Is there a crisis in rice?

  • The southwest monsoon’s revival this month has resulted in the total area sown under kharif crops not only recovering, but even surpassing last year’s coverage for the same period from June to mid-July.
  • In rice, the stakes are higher: It is India’s largest agricultural crop (accounting for over 40% of the total foodgrain output), with the country also being the world’s biggest exporter (a record 21.21 mt valued at $9.66 billion got shipped out during the fiscal ended March 2022).Hence statement 1 is correct.

Why has acreage fallen?

  • Farmers first sow paddy seeds in nurseries, where they are raised into young plants.
  • These seedlings are then uprooted and replanted 25-35 days later in the main field that is usually 10 times the size of the nursery seed bed.
  • Nursery sowing generally happens before the monsoon rains.
  • All this isn’t possible without the monsoon. The country has received 353.7 mm of rainfall during June 1 to July 17, 12.7% more than the “normal” historical average for this period.
  • Yet, a vast paddy-growing belt, from Uttar Pradesh to West Bengal, has had very little rains.Hence statement 3 is correct.
  • Paddy cultivation takes place across a wider geography, unlike wheat which is grown only in a few states north of the Vindhyas.
  • Also, rice is both a Kharif (monsoon) and rabi (winter-spring) season crop. So, the losses in one area or season can potentially be recouped from the other.Hence statement  2 is correct.

‘Sanda’ double-transplanting method

  • In eastern UP, farmers with access to basic irrigation under conditions of delayed rainfall practice this method of cultivation
  • In this ,the seedlings are uprooted after 25 days in the nursery and replanted in a puddled field that is only about twice the former’s area
  • The plants after establishment begin tillering and are, thus, rejuvenated for the next 10-15 days. When the rains come, they are again uprooted and replanted in the main field 10 times the size of the original nursery
  • Paddy yields under this method is better than regular one-step transplanting
  • The reason for it is that the Sanda plants have already tillered and their establishment in the main field would be near 100% with little mortality.

Source: https://indianexpress.com/article/business/companies/irdai-in-favour-of-insurers-in-slbc-proposes-steep-hike-in-premium-target-8035606/

3. Consider the following statements regarding State Level Bankers Committee

  1. It is an inter-institutional forum at State level ensuring co-ordination between Government and Banks on matters pertaining to banking development
  2. It is set-up as per the Lead Bank Scheme of the Reserve Bank of 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: Irdai in favour of insurers in SLBC, proposes steep hike in premium target

  • The insurance regulator has proposed the involvement of insurance companies at the state level and a big hike in the premium collection target in the next five years to deepen insurance penetration in the country insurance companies should become members of the State Level Bankers Committee (SLBC) and boost the growth of the sector.
  • Insurance Regulatory and Development Authority of India (Irdai) Chairman Debasish Panda said insurance companies should become members of the State Level Bankers Committee (SLBC) and boost the growth of the sector.

About State Level Bankers Committee (SLBC)

  • The State Level Bankers’ Committee (SLBC) was constituted in April 1977, as an apex inter-institutional forum to create adequate coordination machinery in all States, on a uniform basis for development of the State.Hence statement 1 is correct.
  • State Level Bankers’ Committee, set-up as per the Lead Bank Scheme of the Reserve Bank of India, is the highest body of bankers in the state.Hence statement 2 is correct.
  • The committee meets once a quarter. In addition to reviewing the activities of the institutional lending, the quarterly meetings discuss various issues concerning the economic development of the state, where banks play a pivotal role.
  • The meetings aim at finding solution to the various problems confronting the state.
  • The forum takes the lead in initiating, streamlining and accelerating the process of development in close co-ordination with various government departments, Reserve Bank of India, NABARD and other developmental agencies.
  • The quarterly meetings are attended by top-level functionaries of member institutions of SLBC, thereby enabling them for meaningful and purposeful discussions on various matters aimed at solving the various issues.

About LEAD Scheme

  • A Committee of Bankers on Branch Expansion Programme of public sector banks appointed by Reserve Bank of India under the Chairmanship of Shri F. K. F.Nariman (Nariman Committee) endorsed the idea in November 1969.
  • It also recommended that each bank can concentrate on certain districts where it should act as a ‘Lead Bank’.
    In terms of the above recommendations, Lead Bank Scheme was introduced by Reserve Bank in December, 1969.

Source: https://indianexpress.com/article/business/companies/irdai-in-favour-of-insurers-in-slbc-proposes-steep-hike-in-premium-target-8035606/

4. Consider the following statements regarding Lightning Resilient India Campaign

  1. It aims to reduce the number of deaths to less than 1,200 a year by 2022.
  2. It is a joint initiative of Climate Resilient Observing-Systems Promotion Council, National Disaster Management Authority and India Meteorological Department

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: Lightning toll down 60% in 3 most vulnerable States: Report

  • Deaths due to lightning have come down by more than 60 per cent in the vulnerable states of Odisha, Andhra Pradesh and Nagaland during 2021-22.
  • Lightning Resilient India Campaign has created a Lightning Atlas that details strikes across States/UTs with impacts

About Lightning Resilient India Campaign

  • It aims to reduce the number of deaths to less than 1,200 a year by 2022. Hence statement 1 is correct.
  • The campaign, through multi-stakeholders engagement at national and state level with governments, academia, nonprofits and communities, has been successful in bringing down deaths by more than 60 per cent within two years.

LRIC is a joint initiative of

  • Climate Resilient Observing-Systems Promotion Council (CROPC),
  • National Disaster Management Authority (NDMA),
  • India Meteorological Department (IMD),
  • Union Ministry of Earth Science,
  • World Vision India,
  • UNICEF among others.Hence statement 2 is correct.

Source: https://www.thehindubusinessline.com/economy/agri-business/annual-report-flashes-light-on-evolving-lightning-climatology-of-india/article65650552.ece

5. Consider the following statements regarding zero coupon zero principal instruments

  1. It will be governed by rules made by the RBI
  2. It is issued by a Not for Profit Organisation which will be registered with the social stock exchange segment of a recognised stock exchange.

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: (b) 2 only

Explanation:

In NEWS: Govt declares ‘zero coupon zero principal instruments’ as securities

  • In the run up to setting up a social stock exchange, the government has declared “zero coupon zero principal instruments” as securities.
  • Zero coupon zero principal instrument means an instrument issued by a Not for Profit Organisation (NPO) which will be registered with the social stock exchange segment of a recognised stock exchange.Hence statement 2 is correct.
  • These instruments will be governed by rules made by the Securities and Exchange Board of India (Sebi).Hence statement 1 is correct.
  • The central government has declared “zero coupon zero principal instruments” as securities for the purposes of the Securities Contracts (Regulation) Act, 1956.
  • Social enterprises eligible to participate in the SSE should be entities — NPOs and for-profit social enterprises — having social intent and impact as their primary goal.
  • Also, such an intent should be demonstrated through its focus on eligible social objectives for the underserved or less privileged populations or regions.
  • The social enterprises will have to engage in a social activity out of the list of 15 broad activities approved by Sebi.
  • This move is certainly going to benefit both — one who wants to donate and one who wants to raise money for social causes. Take the example of a corporate which is mandated to use part of profit under Corporate Social Responsibility (CSR), it will get an instrument to invest but not for return.
  • It has been proposed that the minimum issue size of ZCZP will be 1 crore while the minimum application size shall be Rs.2 lakh.

Source: https://www.thehindubusinessline.com/economy/policy/zero-coupon-zero-principal-bond-declared-securities/article65650626.ece

6. With respect to Extended Fund Facility, consider the following statements

  1. It is a fund created by IMF
  2. It was created to support the efforts of developing countries in responding to the challenge of climate change.

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: The Pakistan and IMF talks: What lies ahead?

  • The 39-month EFF between Pakistan and the IMF was signed in July 2019 to provide funds amounting to Self-Drawing Rights (SDR) — $4,268 million.
  • Structural reforms have been sacrificed due to Pakistan’s short-sighted political goals; hence the urge to go to the IMF for fiscal stability has been repeated over time.
  • The EFF was signed by Pakistan to address the medium-term balance of payment problem, and work on structural impediments and increase per capita income.
  • The latest IMF press release maintains it would consider an extension of the current EFF to end June 2023 and augment the fund amount to $7 billion.Hence statement 1 is correct.

About Extended Fund Facility

  • The EFF was established to provide assistance to countries experiencing serious payment imbalances because of structural impediments or slow growth and an inherently weak balance-of-payments position. Hence statement 2 is correct.
  • An EFF provides support for comprehensive programs including the policies needed to correct structural imbalances over an extended period.
  • Typically approved for periods of three years, but may be approved for periods as long as 4 years (repaid over 4.5–10 years in 12 equal semiannual installments unlike Stand-By Agreement facility which provides support for short period with repayment period of 3.5–5 years.)
  • When a country borrows from the IMF, it commits to undertake policies to overcome economic and structural problems
  • The IMF’s Executive Board regularly assesses program performance and can adjust the program to adapt to economic developments.
  • Lending is tied to the IMF’s market-related interest rate, known as the basic rate of charge, which is linked to the Fund’s Special Drawing Rights (SDR) interest rate.

Source:

7. Chushul-Moldo border personnel meeting point is between which of the following two countries?

  1. India-china
  2. India-Bhutan
  3. India-Nepal
  4. India-Myanmar

Answer: (a) India-China

Explanation:

In NEWS: Stalemate in India-China talk continues

  • China refuses to discuss Demchok and Depsang as India pushes for a comprehensive disengagement
  • The stalemate in the talks between India and China to end the stand-off in eastern Ladakh continues with no breakthrough in the 16th round of Corps Commander talks
  • The talks held at the Chushul-Moldo border meeting point on the Indian side lasted for over 12 hours.
  • There are five BPM points along the Line of Actual Control (LAC) at Bum La and Kibithu in Arunachal Pradesh, Daulat Beg Oldi and Chushul in Ladakh, and Nathu La in Sikkim

What is the Chushul sub-sector?

  • The Chushul sub-sector lies south of Pangong Tso in eastern Ladakh.
  • It comprises high, broken mountains and heights of Thatung, Black Top, Helmet Top, Gurung Hill, and Magger Hill besides passes such as Rezang La and Rechin La, the Spanggur Gap, and the Chushul valley.
  • Situated at a height of over 13,000 feet close to the LAC, the Chushul Valley has a vital airstrip that played an important role even during the 1962 War with China.

Source: https://indianexpress.com/article/explained/explained-in-india-china-standoff-in-ladakh-why-chushul-is-critical-6587144/

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8. Consider the following statements regarding regarding Bail law,

       1)Bail is governed by Provision in the Crpc.

       2) Bail is a right in Bailable offence.

       3) It is discretion of Court to grant bail for all kind of offences.

Which of the above statements are correct?

  • 1 and 2 only
  • 2 and 3 only
  • 1 and 3 only
  • 1, 2 and 3

Answer: (a) 1 and 2 only

In NEWS: SC recommends for Bail law reform in line with U.K

Explanation:

  • The CrPC does not define the word bail but only categories offences under the Indian Penal Code as ‘bailable’ and ‘non-bailable’.Hence statement 1 is correct.
  • The CrPC empowers magistrates to grant bail for bailable offences as a matter of right.
  • This would involve release on furnishing a bail bond, without or without security.
  • In case of Non-bailable offences , a magistrate would determine if the accused is fit to be released on bail.Hence statement 3 is Incorrect.
  • Non-bailable offences are cognisable, which enables the police officer to arrest without a warrant.
  • Section 436 of the Code of Criminal Procedure, 1973, lays down that a person accused of a bailable offence under I.P.C. can be granted bail. On the other hand, Section 437 of the Code of Criminal Procedure, 1973 lays down that the accused does not have the right to bail in non-bailable offences. It is the discretion of the court to grant bail in case of non-bailable offences.

Source: TH

9. Consider the following statements regarding cryptocurrency

  1. It is a form of digital or virtual currency based on a network that is distributed across a large number of computers.
  2. In India, it is not consider as legal tender
  3. It is not issued by any central authority

Which of the above statements are correct?

  • 1 and 2 only
  • 2 and 3 only
  • 1 and 3 only
  • 1, 2 and 3

Answer: (d) 1,2 and 3

Explanation:

In News:

The Reserve Bank of India has recommended a ban on cryptocurrencies citing ‘destabilising effects’ for the country’s monetary and fiscal health, but a law to regulate or ban cryptocurrencies can only be effective once there is some form of international agreement in place.

About cryptocurrency

  • A cryptocurrency is a form of digital or virtual currency based on a network that is distributed across a large number of computers. Hence statement 1 is correct.
  • It is nearly impossible to counterfeit or double-spend.
  • Many cryptocurrencies are decentralized networks based on blockchain technology. 
  • Cryptocurrencies are generally not issued by any central authority. Therefore, it makes them theoretically immune to government interference or manipulation.Hence statement 3 is correct.

Advantages

  • They include cheaper and faster money transfers.
  • They are decentralized systems that do not collapse at a single point of failure.
  • They enable secure online payments without the use of third-party intermediaries.

Disadvantages 

  • They include price volatility
  • They include high energy consumption for mining activities
  • They can be used in criminal activities.
  • It is believed that cryptocurrency will disrupt many industries, including finance and law.

Source: TH

10. Mission Indradhanush’ launched by the Government of India pertains to (2016)

  • immunization of children and pregnant women
  • construction of smart cities across the country
  • India’s own search for the Earth-like planets in outer space
  • New Educational Policy

Answer: (a) immunization of children and pregnant women

Explanation:

  • Mission Indradhanush is an immunization scheme launched by the Ministry of Health and Family Welfare, GoI on 25th December, 2014.
  • Depicting seven colours of the rainbow, it aimed to cover all those children by 2020 who are either unvaccinated, or are partially vaccinated against seven vaccine preventable diseases which include diphtheria, whooping cough, tetanus, polio, tuberculosis, measles and hepatitis B.
  • The mission is technically supported by WHO, UNICEF, Rotary International and other donor partners.