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IAS Preparation: Questions for Prelims 8 February 2018

Feb 8, 2018 14:06 IST
    IAS Preparation: Questions for Prelims 8 February 2018
    IAS Preparation: Questions for Prelims 8 February 2018

    To clear the IAS Exam, continuous efforts to master the current affairs component are a must. To answer current affairs based questions in prelims, one should not only have the preliminary information about the current events, but also the clarity about the issues and concepts involved.

    To cater to this need of IAS Exam aspirants, Jagran Josh is providing five important Multiple Choice Questions (MCQs) on a daily basis. The questions cover important current affairs events in the fields of economy, national, India-World relations, science and technology, environment, etc. Answers along with detailed explanations to the questions will help the aspirants in answering further questions on the given topic in all the phases of the exam – Preliminary, Mains written and Personality Test.

    IAS Prelims Exam Guide

    1. Recently, the CCEA has approved some changes to the Pradhan Mantri Ujjwala Yojana. Which of the following is/are part of those changes?
    1) The target was increased from the existing 5 crore to 8 crore LPG connections with an additional allocation of Rs 4800 crore.
    2) The coverage of the scheme has been expanded to include all the scheduled caste and scheduled tribe households in the country.

    Which of the above statements is/are correct?
    a) 1 only
    b) 2 only
    c) Both 1 and 2
    d) Neither 1 nor 2

    Answer. c

    Explanation:

    In February 2018, the Union Cabinet Committee on Economic Affairs (CCEA) approved the following two changes to the Pradhan Mantri Ujjwala Yojana (PMUY).
    The target was increased from the existing 5 crore to 8 crore liquefied petroleum gas (LPG) connections  with an additional allocation of Rs 4800 crore. The revised target of PMUY will be achieved by 2020.

    The scheme will cover all the scheduled caste and scheduled tribe households, beneficiaries of Pradhan Mantri Gramin Awaas Yojana Gramin and Antyoday Anna Yojana (AAY), forest dwellers, most backward classes (MBCs), tea and ex-tea garden tribes, people residing in the Islands and rivers and the Socio Economic Caste Survey (SECC) identified households.

    About Pradhan Mantri Ujjwala Yojana

    • The scheme was launched in May 2016 by the Union Government.

    • The scheme seeks to provide free LPG connections to women in below poverty line (BPL) households and builds on the objective of achieving universal coverage of cooking gas in the country.

    • Under the scheme, a financial support of 1600 rupees will be provided in lieu of each LPG connection to each BPL household.

    • The identification of eligible BPL families will be made in consultation with the States and Union Territories.

    • So far, more than 4.65 crore applications have been received. The initial target is to cover 5 crore BPL households by March 2019.

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    2. Consider the following statements related to the Prithvi-II missile that was successfully test-fired recently.
    1) It is an indigenously developed nuclear capable cruise missile.
    2) It is the first missile to be developed by the DRDO under the Integrated Guided Missile Development Programme.

    Which of the above statements is/are correct?
    a) 1 only
    b) 2 only
    c) Both 1 and 2
    d) Neither 1 nor 2

    Answer. b

    Explanation:

    India on February 7, 2018 successfully test-fired indigenously developed nuclear capable Prithvi-II ballistic missile at the Integrated Test Range (ITR) in the Dr. Abdul Kalam Island off the coast of Odisha. Inducted into the armed forces of the country in 2003, Prithvi-II is the first missile to be developed by the DRDO under the Integrated Guided Missile Development Programme (IGMDP).

    The trial was conducted by the Strategic Force Command (SFC) of the Indian Army and monitored by the Defence Research and Development Organisation (DRDO). The SFC is responsible for the management and administration of the country's tactical and strategic nuclear weapons stockpile. It was created in January 2003.

    About Prithvi-II missile

    • It is a nine-metre-tall and single-stage liquid-fuelled missile. It has a strike range of 350 kilometres.

    • It is capable of carrying 500 to 1000 kilograms of warheads and derives its thrust from liquid propulsion twin engines.

    • It uses an advanced inertial guidance system with a planned trajectory to hit its target.

    • The naval operational variant of Prithvi-II class missile is known as Dhanush.

    Ballistic vs. Cruise missile

    • While a ballistic missile has a ballistic (arc-like) trajectory  over most of its flight path, a cruise missile can fly in a relatively straight line. A cruise missile also has high maneuvering capability.

    • While a ballistic missile travels at higher altitudes, a cruise missile travels at lower altitudes.

    • While ballistic missiles are used for long distances, a cruise missile is used for short distances.

    • While Prithvi, Agni and Dhanush are ballistic missiles, BRAHMOS is the only known versatile supersonic cruise missile system that is in service.

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    3. Recently, the Union Cabinet approved the ratification of the Minamata Convention that governs the usage of _____
    a) Mercury
    b) Lead
    c) Cadmium
    d) Benzene

    Answer. a

    Explanation:

    On 7 February 2018, the Union Cabinet chaired by Prime Minister Narendra Modi approved the proposal for ratification of the Minamata Convention on Mercury and depositing the instrument of ratification.

    The approval entails the ratification of the Convention along with flexibility for continued use of mercury-based products and processes involving mercury compound up to 2025.

    The objective of the Convention is to protect human health and the environment from the anthropogenic emissions and releases of mercury and mercury compounds.

    The Convention protects the most vulnerable from the harmful effects of mercury and also protects the developmental space of developing countries.

    The Minamata Convention on Mercury will further urge enterprises to move to mercury-free alternatives in products and non-mercury technologies in manufacturing processes. This will drive research and development and promote innovation.

    Background

    • In February 2009, the Governing Council of the United Nations Environmental Program (UNEP) decided to develop a global legally binding instrument on mercury.

    • The Convention entered into force on 16 August 2017. The first meeting of its Conference of the Parties (COP1) was held from 24 to 29 September 2017 in Geneva, Switzerland.

    • The Convention is named after the Japanese city Minamata. This naming is of symbolic importance as the city went through.

    Previously, the World Health Organisation (WHO) has identified ten chemicals or groups of chemicals that are of major public health concern. They are Mercury, Air Pollution, Arsenic, Asbestos, Benzene, Cadmium, Dioxin an Dioxin-like substances, Inadquate or excess fluoride, Mercury and Highly hazardous pesticides.

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    4. Recently, Bhabha Atomic Research Centre (BARC) has developed a technology to convert sewage into bio-fertilizer. Consider the following statements regarding this:
    1) The use of such bio-fertilizer provides organic carbon and other nutrients to the soil.
    2) The developed technology, subjects the dried sludge to crushing and exposure to 10 kGy radiation dose which kills the pathogens in the sludge and makes it safer for use.

    Which of the above statements is/are correct?
    a) 1 only
    b) 2 only
    c) Both 1 and 2
    d) Neither 1 nor 2

    Answer. c

    Explanation:

    Conventionally sewage treatment plant treats the sewage and the same is dried. The technology developed by Bhabha Atomic Research Centre (BARC) subjects the dried sludge to crushing and exposure to 10 kGy radiation dose. This kills the pathogens in the sludge and makes it safer for use. In the next step, BIO-NPK (Nitrogen Phosphorus Potassium) microorganisms are sprayed on to it to make it bio- fertilizer. The use of such bio-fertilizer provides organic carbon and other nutrients to the soil. The process also helps in recycling of the waste material to useful Bio-fertilizer.

    (i) A 100 ton/day capacity facility has been constructed at Ahmedabad under Memorandum of Understanding (MoU) with Ahmedabad Municipal Corporation.

    (ii) The cold trials have been completed successfully.

    (iii) The facility is scheduled to be fully operational soon after radiation source loading.

    (iv) Another similar facility of 100 ton/day capacity will be constructed at Indore under MoU with BARC.

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    5. Recently, the Union Cabinet has approved a proposal to implement the Prime Minister’s Research Fellows (PMRF) scheme. Consider the following statements regarding this:
    1) Under the scheme, the top 3,000 B.Tech graduates of the country will get grants to pursue a PhD in the Indian Institutes of Technology (IITs) and Indian Institute of Science (IISc).
    2) The cabinet approved the scheme at a cost of Rs1,650 crore for a period of seven years, beginning 2018-19.
    3) The scheme would go a long way in tapping the talent pool available in the country for carrying out research indigenously in the cutting-edge science and technology domains.

    Which of the above statements is/are correct?
    a) 1 only
    b) 1 and 2
    c) 2 and 3
    d) 1, 2 and 3

    Answer: d

    Explanation:

    The Union cabinet on Wednesday approved a proposal to implement the Prime Minister’s Research Fellows (PMRF) scheme, under which the top 3,000 B.Tech graduates of the country will get grants to pursue a PhD in the Indian Institutes of Technology (IITs) and Indian Institute of Science (IISc).

    The cabinet approved the scheme at a cost of Rs1,650 crore for a period of seven years, beginning 2018-19. The scheme was announced by Union finance minister Arun Jaitley during his budget speech in Parliament on 1 February. Apart from this, a research grant of Rs2 lakh each will be provided to the fellows for a period of five years to cover their foreign travel expenses for presenting research papers at international conferences and seminars. A maximum of 3,000 fellows will be selected over a three-year period, beginning 2018-19. The scheme would go a long way in tapping the talent pool available in the country for carrying out research indigenously in the cutting-edge science and technology domains.

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