19 Apr 2019: UPSC Exam Comprehensive News Analysis

April 19th 2019 CNA:-Download PDF Here

TABLE OF CONTENTS

A. GS1 Related
B. GS2 Related
POLITY AND GOVERNANCE
1. Plea in SC on voting rights of undertrials and convicts
2. Travelling abroad a basic right, says SC
HEALTH
1. After J&J case, govt. treads carefully
C. GS3 Related
SCIENCE AND TECHNOLOGY
1. CSIR plans genome sequencing to map population diversity
2. HIV used to fix ‘bubble boy’ disease
ECONOMY
1. I-T dept. proposes new norms for taxing MNCs
D. GS4 Related
E. Editorials
INTERNATIONAL RELATIONS
1. Predictable chaos in Libya
ENVIRONMENT
1. A struggle to breathe
F. Tidbits
1. In a first, voting takes place at Institute of Mental Health
2. Plastic bottles turned into shirts
G. Prelims Facts
1. International Day For Monuments and Sites
2. Tendered vote
3. Top U.K. honour for Indian scientist
H. UPSC Prelims Practice Questions
I. UPSC Mains Practice Questions

A. GS1 Related

Nothing here for today!!!

B. GS2 Related

Category: POLITY AND GOVERNANCE

1. Plea in SC on voting rights of undertrials and convicts

Context:

The Supreme Court is hearing a plea filed by a law student questioning an electoral law which denies undertrials and convicts their right to vote.

Provision under Representation of People Act:

  • Section 62(5) of the Representation of People Act of 1951 mandates that “no person shall vote at any election if he is confined in a prison, whether under a sentence of imprisonment or transportation or otherwise, or is in the lawful custody of the police.
  • The provisions however exempt a person held under preventive detention from this rigour.

Background:

  • In Anukul Chandra Pradhan vs Union of India, the Supreme Court upheld the validity of the provisions of section 62(5) of the Representation of Peoples Act, 1951 on two grounds;
    • firstly that Article 14 does not affect it, and
    • secondly the Court observed that the right to vote is subject to the limitations imposed by the statute which can be exercised only in the manner provided by the statute prescribing the nature of the rights to elect cannot be made with reference to fundamental rights in the Constitution.
  • The denial of voting rights to prisoners is meant to prevent breach of law but persons in jail after conviction or during investigation and trial subsequent to the commission of crimes should be put on different footing, such distinction not being sufficient by itself. A person, who is under trial, may be found innocent.
  • The concept of restriction on voting right evolved as it could have violated the fundamental rights of others but there is no reasonable explanation one can give for such restriction being imposed on the under trials.

Details:

  • The petition, represented by advocate Zoheb Hossain, highlights how the Section sees both an undertrial and a convicted person equally.
  • The former’s guilt is yet to be proved in a court. A person is innocent until proven guilty by law.
  • Despite this, it denies an undertrial the right to vote but allows a detainee the same.
  • However, a person out on bail is allowed to cast his vote.
  • The petitioner points out that the wording of the section uses “confinement” as the yardstick thereby creating several anomalies.
  • In addition to convicts who have been sentenced to a particular period of imprisonment, even under-trials, whose innocence or guilt has not been conclusively determined, are deprived of their right to vote, as they too are confined in prison, although they have not been sentenced to imprisonment.
  • A convict who has been imprisoned as part of her sentence can still cast her vote if she is released on bail. This is because such a person is not per se confined in prison
  • The plea argued that the provision violates the rights to equality, vote (Article 326) and is arbitrary. It is not a reasonable restriction.
  • The petitioner has also raised violation of Article 326 of the Constitution submitting that right to vote is a Constitutional right under Article 326 of the Constitution, as was held by the Supreme Court in People’s Union for Civil Liberties (PUCL) v Union of India and Rajbala v State of Haryana 
  • The provision operates in the nature of a blanket ban, as it lacks any kind of reasonable classification based on the nature of the crime committed or the duration of the sentence imposed. This lack of classification is anathema to the fundamental right to equality under Article 14, the petition contends.
  • It is the petitioner’s submission that any curtailment of such a right must be based upon permissible restrictions found within the Constitution itself, and in the absence of any such restrictions, the curtailment in question is ultra vires the Constitution.

2. Travelling abroad a basic right, says SC

Context:

  • The right to travel abroad is a genuine and basic human right like marriage and family, the Supreme Court has observed in a recent order.
  • The Supreme Court has allowed an IPS officer facing department proceedings to go on a private trip to the US and France to meet his family.

Details:

  • The court was hearing an appeal filed by an IPS officer who was refused permission to take a private trip abroad to visit relatives as he had a departmental enquiry pending against him.
  • “The right to travel abroad is an important basic human right for it nourishes independent and self-determining creative character of the individual, not only by extending his freedoms of action, but also by extending the scope of his experience,” a Bench led by Justice L. Nageswara Rao said in its order.
  • The IPS officer was denied permission to travel abroad despite the fact that he had no criminal case against him. Yet both the Central Administrative Tribunal, Chennai Bench, and the Madras High Court denied him his right. The High Court upheld the tribunal’s position that he cannot travel abroad without vigilance clearance.
  • Setting aside the order, the Supreme Court referred to its Maneka Gandhi judgment upholding the right to travel and the landmark U.S. Supreme Court case of 1958 Kent vs Dulles.
  • The Bench quoted the majority opinion of Justice William O. Douglas in the latter case which said “freedom to go abroad has much social value and represents the basic human right of great significance”.
  • The right to travel abroad is also covered under “personal liberty” in Article 21 in Maneka Gandhi v/s UOI 1978.
  • The apex court also asserted that the right to travel is an essential fundamental right of an individual.
  • The court said that this basic human right “also extends to private life; marriage, family and friendship”. These are part of human nature which can be “rarely affected through a refusal of freedom to go abroad”.
  • Pendency of departmental proceedings cannot be a ground to prevent the appellant from travelling abroad, the court ordered.

Category: HEALTH

1. After J&J case, govt. treads carefully

Context:

The Drugs Technical Advisory Board (DTAB) has recommended amendment to Rule 26 of the Drugs and Cosmetics Rules, 1945, which deals with conditions under import licences.

Background:

  • In the previous year, an expert committee report on faulty hip prosthetics sold by a subsidiary of the U.S. firm Johnson & Johnson had revealed incriminating details about its negligence in dealing with Indian patients.
  • It indicated that the company had suppressed key facts on the harmful effects of the company’s “faulty” hip replacement systems, withdrawn globally after complications required many patients to undergo revision surgery.
  • The company got the licence to import the device in 2006 to India
  • By the time it was recalled worldwide, an estimated 4,700 ASR implants had been done in the country.
  • Amid concerns worldwide, the Health Ministry set up an expert committee in 2017 to examine issues arising out of faulty ASR implants in India.
  • The committee reviewed action taken by the company to replace faulty ASR implants, and reviewed compensation provided to those who had suffered.

Details:

  • The DTAB says of the proposed change: “The licensee shall maintain reference samples from each batch of the drugs imported by him in a quantity which is at least twice the quantity of the drug required to conduct all the tests performed in the batch.”
  • “In case of drugs bearing an expiry date on the label, the reference samples shall be maintained for a period of three months beyond the date of expiry or potency. In case of drugs where no date of expiry or potency is specified on the label, the reference samples shall be maintained for a period of three years from the date of manufacture.”
  • A senior health official explained that, previously, the rules applied to indigenous manufacturers marketing drugs in the country, adding, “There was no such condition available in the import licence under the Drugs and Cosmetics Rules, 1945.”
  • In a situation where there were any spurious, misbranded or sub-standard drug found in the market, it became very difficult to verify the authenticity of such drugs, as the control samples of such imported drugs were not available with the import licence holder.
  • This move offers much needed protection to patients, and teeth to regulatory authorities in India.
  • Meanwhile, the DTAB has also agreed to amend the Medical Devices Rules, 2017 to incorporate the names, qualifications and experiences of competent technical staff responsible for the manufacture and testing of medical devices, and the scope of accreditation in the respective forms.
  • This comes alongside the proposal for an additional over 700 staff members to monitor the sale, use, etc., of medical devices.

Drugs Technical Advisory Board (DTAB):

  • DTAB is highest statutory decision-making body on technical matters related to drugsin the country.
  • It is constituted as per the Drugs and Cosmetics Act, 1940.
  • It is part of Central Drugs Standard Control Organization (CDSCO) in the Ministry of Health and Family Welfare.

C. GS3 Related

Category: SCIENCE AND TECHNOLOGY

1. CSIR plans genome sequencing to map population diversity

Context:

In an indigenous genetic mapping effort, nearly 1,000 rural youth from the length and breadth of India will have their genomes sequenced by the Council of Scientific and Industrial Research (CSIR).

Details:

  • The project aims at educating a generation of students on the “usefulness” of genomics.
    • Genomics is the study of whole genomes of organisms, and incorporates elements from genetics. Genomics uses a combination of recombinant DNA, DNA sequencing methods, and bioinformatics to sequence, assemble, and analyse the structure and function of genomes.
  • Globally, many countries have undertaken genome sequencing of a sample of their citizens to determine unique genetic traits, susceptibility (and resilience) to disease. This is the first time that such a large sample of Indians will be recruited for a detailed study.
  • The project is an adjunct to a much larger government-led programme, still in the works, to sequence at least 10,000 Indian genomes.
  • Typically, those recruited as part of genome-sample collections are representative of the country’s population diversity. In this case, the bulk of them will be college students, both men and women, and pursuing degrees in the life sciences or biology.

Methodology:

  • Genomes will be sequenced based on a blood sample and the scientists plan to hold at least 30 camps covering most States.
  • Every person whose genomes are sequenced will be given a report.
  • The participants would be told if they carry gene variants that make them less responsive to certain classes of medicines. For instance, having a certain gene makes some people less responsive to clopidogrel, a key drug that prevents strokes and heart attack.
  • However such information will not be included in the report as:
    • In some cases the correlation between disease and genes is weak.
    • Many disorders have single-gene causes but no cure or even a line of treatment.
    • Ethics require such information to be shared only after appropriate counselling.
  • The project would involve the Hyderabad-based Centre for Cellular and Molecular Biology (CCMB) and cost ₹18 crore, with the sequencing to be done at the IGIB and the CCMB.
  • The human genome has about 3.2 billion base pairs and just 10 years ago cost about 10,000 dollars. Now prices have fallen to a tenth.

Significance:

  • Since genomics is largely confined to a rich urban demographic in India, this exercise, would make such information ubiquitous even to villages.
  • Just as CT scans are known across the country, it is hoped that same level of awareness and information could be made available for genomes.
  • Ever since the human genome was first sequenced in 2003, it opened a fresh perspective on the link between disease and the unique genetic make-up of each individual.
  • Nearly 10,000 diseases — including cystic fibrosis, thalassemia — are known to be the result of a single gene malfunctioning.
  • While genes may render some insensitive to certain drugs, genome sequencing has shown that cancer too can be understood from the viewpoint of genetics, rather than being seen as a disease of certain organs.
  • The project would prove India’s capabilities at executing whole-genome sequencing.
  • A baseline Indian population could be established and asked novel questions. For instance, in developed countries diarrhoeal infections are rarer than in India. Do genes have a role?
  • People can be followed over long periods and health changes could be tracked.

CSIR:

  • The Council of Scientific and Industrial Research abbreviated as CSIR was established by the Government of India in September of 1942.
  • It is an autonomous body that has emerged as the largest research and development organisation in India.

CCMB:

  • Centre for Cellular and Molecular Biology Centre for Cellular and Molecular Biology (CCMB) is a biotechnology research establishment in Hyderabad and operates under the aegis of the Council of Scientific and Industrial Research (CSIR).
  • CCMB is also a designated “Center of Excellence” by the Global Molecular and Cell Biology Network, UNESCO.

2. HIV used to fix ‘bubble boy’ disease

Context:

US scientists say they used HIV to make a gene therapy that cured eight infants of severe combined immunodeficiency, or “bubble boy” disease.

What is Bubble boy disease?

  • Severe combined immunodeficiency, SCID, is also known as alymphocytosis, Glanzmann–Riniker syndrome, severe mixed immunodeficiency syndrome, and thymic alymphoplasia.
  • It is a rare genetic disorder characterized by the disturbed development of functional T cells and B cells caused by numerous genetic mutations that result in differing clinical presentations.
  • SCID is caused by a genetic flaw that keeps the bone marrow from making effective versions of blood cells that comprise the immune system. It affects 1 in 2,00,000 newborns, almost exclusively males.
  • It is also known as the bubble boy disease and bubble baby disease because its victims are extremely vulnerable to infectious diseases. The name comes from a famous case in the 1970s a Texas boy who lived for 12 years in a protective plastic bubble to isolate him from germs.
  • SCID patients are usually affected by severe bacterial, viral, or fungal infections early in life and often present with interstitial lung disease, chronic diarrhoea, and failure to thrive.
  • These babies, if untreated, usually die within one year due to severe, recurrent infections.

Details:

  • Eight babies with “bubble boy disease” have had it fixed by a gene therapy made from one of the immune system’s worst enemies HIV, the virus that causes AIDS.
  • A study published by the New England Journal of Medicine details how scientists turned this enemy virus into a saviour, altering it so it couldn’t cause disease and then using it to deliver a gene the boys lacked.

Category: ECONOMY

1. I-T dept. proposes new norms for taxing MNCs

Context:

The income tax department proposed a change in the methodology for taxing multinational companies (MNCs), including digital firms, having permanent establishment in India by giving weightage to factors like domestic sales, employee strength, assets and user base.

Background:

The CBDT had set up the committee to bring greater clarity and predictability for taxing MNCs having permanent establishment in India.

Details:

  • An MNC having a fixed place of business in India is considered as having Permanent Establishment (PE) in India and is taxed as per domestic laws.
  • The CBDT committee report has proposed that sales, employees (manpower and wages) and assets in India of MNCs should be taken into account for determining domestic tax liability.
  • The CBDT Committee on ‘Profit Attribution to Permanent Establishment (PE) in India’ also said MNCs that are incurring global losses or a global profit margin of less than 2 per cent and have operations in India will be deemed to have made a profit of 2 per cent of Indian revenue or turnover and will be taxed accordingly.
  • The committee noted the need to protect India’s revenue interests in cases where an enterprise having global losses or a global profit margin of less than 2 per cent, continues with the Indian operations, which could be more profitable than its operations elsewhere.
  • “The continuation of Indian operations justifies the presumption of higher profitability of Indian operations, and in such cases, a deeming provision that deems profits of Indian operations at 2 per cent of revenue or turnover derived from India should be introduced,” the report said.
  • The report provides different weightage for digital companies categorising them as “high” and “low or medium” user base with significant economic presence in India.
  • In case of ‘high user intensity’, the weight of users should be 20 per cent, share of assets and employees 25 per cent each and sales at 30 per cent, while for ‘low and medium user intensity’, users should be assigned a weight of 10 per cent while three factors would have a weight of 30 per cent each.

The Central Board of Direct Taxes (CBDT) has invited comments from stakeholders on the report within 30 days.

D. GS4 Related

Nothing here for today!!!

E. Editorials

Category: INTERNATIONAL RELATIONS

1. Predictable chaos in Libya

Context:

General Khalifa Haftar, head of the Libyan National Army, having after taking control of the east of the country including most of the oilfields, is advancing on the capital Tripoli.

Details:

Gen. Haftar had helped Muammar Qaddafi seize power in 1969 before going into exile in the U.S. in the 1980s, but returned to Libya in 2011 to join in Qaddafi’s overthrow. He now casts himself as a conservative Salafist opposing Islamists and the Muslim Brothers, and has the backing — for their individual reasons — of Egypt, Saudi Arabia and some West  Asian states, apart from Russia (openly) and France (covertly).

Libya’s descent:

  • The United Nations recognized Tripoli’s administration is called the Government of National Accord, but is being dependent on a motley of warlords, militant or moderate Islamists, secessionists and monarchists, all split on regional and ethnic lines.
  • Even before Gen. Haftar launched his offensive, West Libya was replete with inter-militia battles and kidnappings.
  • The Tripoli government commands no security forces, public administration scarcely exists, water, petrol and power shortages abound, and few banks operate. Thousands are fleeing towards Tunisia, and 180 people have been killed so far in the recent fighting.

Earlier situation of Libya:

  • The oil-rich country once had one of Africa’s highest standards of living, free health care and education, with high female literacy and percentage of women in the workplace. Its inland waterway to green the eastern desert was called the world’s largest irrigation project.

Current situation:

  • The rule of the gun prevails in Libya ever since western forces overthrew Qaddafi. Especially after the western armed intervention supported by some Arab sheikhdoms in Libya.
  • The revolt against Qaddafi began in Benghazi, and western intervention was legitimized by the fig leaf of a UN Security Council resolution calling for a ceasefire, a no-fly zone and protection of civilians, on which there were five abstentions which included India, Russia and China. Qaddafi accepted the resolution.
  • The Libyan tragedy, like those in Iraq, Syria and Yemen, and most probably to ensue in Afghanistan, illustrates wider issues at play.
  • Iraqi warring militias after the Second Gulf War empowered jihadists, made Iraq ungovernable, U.S. withdrawal inevitable, and led to the Balkanisation of the nation. No lessons were learned, causing former U.S. President Barack Obama to confess that his worst mistake was a failure to prepare for the aftermath of western intervention following Qaddafi’s overthrow.
  • Western wishful thinking persists in the belief that Libya could arrive at a path to democracy that revives the country’s collapsed institutions, rather than falling under military rule.

Post-Cold War phenomenon

  • In 1965 and 1981, the UN adopted declarations on the inadmissibility of intervention in the domestic affairs of states, and until the 1990s the UN was the custodian of state sovereignty. The Iraqi-Libyan species of intervention, professedly with UN approval but actually under western control, is a post Cold-War phenomenon, the motivation being to implant liberal democratic institutions and human rights, along with security concerns, usually thinly justified by 9/11 and lately the Islamic State.
  • The spectre of failed states became a major concern, leading to the imposition of a neo-liberal agenda in the guise of human rights protection.
  • The ambiguous legal justification for interventions not specifically authorised by the UN, such as the creation of safe havens in Iraq, established a pattern despite negative precedents that showed that attempting nation-building in societies divided by ethnic, factional, ideological and religious lines is beyond the capacity of any minority group of UN members, let alone of one super-power. None of the interventions could have taken place without the projection of U.S. power or its indirect underwriting.

Two factors paved the way for these neo-protectorates:

  1. Activists with rights-based agendas joined the political mainstream and western outrage to televised suffering.
  2. Activists united with foreign policy establishments, and third world disorder presented opportunities for sly expansion of mandates into new operating areas. Added to these was post-1990 revisionism towards state sovereignty and permissiveness to humanitarian interventions.

Reasons for the failure of state-building in the new protectorates:

  1. The new elites were never very different or more liberal than those deposed.
  2. Organized criminality was invigorated by opportunities created by the absence of proper law enforcement due to outsiders not understanding the consequences of their policies. This was because the interveners were more concerned with checking the power of institutions rather than building them.
  3. And to appease domestic opinion back home, concentrated on exit strategies and political markers such as holding elections. If the outcome was doubtful even in Kosovo in Europe, the challenge of transforming political and social cultures in the world beyond Europe, where there is no economic pull factor and traditions have little in common with western liberalism, was obviously far more formidable.
  1. As for humanitarian arguments and the Responsibility to Protect doctrine, such reasoning is malleable enough to be appropriated by Russia in Georgia and Ukraine. Whether in Libya or elsewhere, expeditionary interventions to implant human rights and democracy have a certain heuristic value in understanding the illusions of western hegemony which rose to prominence in our times and sought to mould the third world in its image.

Category: ENVIRONMENT

1. A struggle to breathe

Context:

  • The National Capital Region’s pollution levels make it to the headlines every year. Every October to December, stubble burning in Punjab and Haryana, smog arising from industries, and motor vehicle emissions increase the air quality index (AQI) of Delhi to the hazardous level of 450.
  • The economic loss for India in the last five years due to the exposure to crop burning is about 1.7% of the country’s GDP. Annually, this exposure to pollution costs Delhi, Haryana and Punjab around 2 lakh crore.

Details:

  • The author is of the view that despite the alarming level of pollution, neither the Union government nor the Delhi government has taken significant steps to plan out a long-term solution. Even the interim Budget took no significant step to tackle this issue.
  • A study by the Council on Energy, Environment and Water found that the average number of vehicles plying on the roads daily increased by 10% during the odd-even period in January 2016 compared to the last week of December 2015. This increase was mainly due to a 17% increase in two-wheelers, 12% increase in three-wheelers, 22% increase in taxis and 138% rise in the number of private buses.
  • Another study published in Current Science found that the odd-even scheme led to an increase in emissions as the median concentration of 13 out of the 16 gases measured were higher in the morning hours and afternoon hours on days when the scheme was enforced.

The author envisages that the government needs to take more radical steps to curb pollution like:

  1. Government should find alternatives to stubble burning and impose strict sanctions in case of contravention of any ban on the practice.
  2. Impose a blanket ban on firecrackers.
  3. Impose a blanket ban on all vehicles exceeding prescribed tailgate emission standards.
  4. Legislate stricter norms for fuels.
  5. Open toll roads where trucks should be excluded and high-occupancy vehicles exempted from the toll
  6. Provide separate bus lanes to reduce congestion
  7. Create a separate fund in the Budget to specifically deal with this crisis
  8. Provide agricultural subsidies to farmers to disincentivise crop burning.
  9. Improve the drainage system; and incentivise the use of renewable energy.

Conclusion:

The author concludes that Apart from the courts, none of the other organs of the state has shown any readiness to deal with the pollution crisis.Meanwhile, until the government responds, NGOs and social workers should step in to tackle this issue through their own programmes and campaigns. In this election season, it is imperative for political parties to make this issue a priority, for pollution doesn’t only affect us but our children, the generations to come, and our planet.

F. Tidbits

1. In a first, voting takes place at Institute of Mental Health

  • It was a historic moment for the 225-year-old Institute of Mental Health (IMH) in Ayanavaram, Chennai.
  • For the first time ever in the country, voting was held on the campus of an institution for the mentally ill.
  • A total of 156 of its inmates — 100 men and 56 women — cast their votes at an auxiliary polling booth established on the campus.

2. Plastic bottles turned into shirts

  • Polo launched a version of its iconic polo shirt made entirely of recycled plastic bottles and dyed through a process that uses zero water. It’s called Earth Polo.
  • Its chief innovation officer, said that the new shirt is part of a broader strategy of fresh environmental goals throughout the manufacturing process.
  • The Polo isn’t the first of its kind. Smaller brands around the world are using repurposed and recycled materials.
  • The company said it will remove at least 170 million bottles from landfills and oceans by 2025.
  • The shirts are manufactured in Taiwan, where the bottles are collected. Each uses an average 12 bottles.
  • The shirts are produced in partnership with First Mile, which collects the bottles turned into yarn and, ultimately, fabric.

G. Prelims Facts

1. International Day For Monuments and Sites

  • The International Day for Monuments and Sites also known as World Heritage Day is an international observance held on 18 April each year around the world with different types of activities, including visits to monuments and heritage sites, conferences, round tables and newspaper articles.
  • UNESCO defines a World Heritage Site as a “natural or man-made area or a structure that is of international importance, and space which requires special protection”.
  • Each year has a theme. Theme for 2019 is rural landscapes.
  • The International Day for Monuments and Sites was proposed by the International Council on Monuments and Sites (ICOMOS) on 18 April 1982 and approved by the General Assembly of UNESCO in 1983.
  • The aim is to promote awareness about the diversity of cultural heritage of humanity, their vulnerability and the efforts required for their protection and conservation.

Read more about UNESCO World Heritage Sites in India.

2. Tendered vote

  • According to the Conduct of Elections Rules, 1961, a voter is allowed to cast a ‘tendered vote’ where someone else representing to be a particular voter has already cast that vote.
  • The presiding officer may allow the actual voter to vote, if the person is able to prove his or her identity.
  • They would be provided a ballot paper to mark symbol and it would be placed in a cover specially kept for the purpose.

3. Top U.K. honour for Indian scientist

  • Scientist and businessman Yusuf Hamied is among a host of Indian-origin experts honoured in the 2019 list of new fellows of the U.K.’s Royal Society.
  • The 82-year-old chairman of pharmaceutical major Cipla has been made an honorary fellow of the prestigious body, comprising of many of the world’s most eminent scientists.
  • The Royal Society is an independent scientific academy of the U.K. and the Commonwealth, dedicated to promoting excellence in science.
  • His honorary fellowship of the world’s oldest scientific academy came alongside 51 new fellows and 10 new foreign members as part of the 2019 cohort.
  • Among the Indian-origin scientists elected as fellows this year are microbiologist Gurdyal Besra, mathematicians Manjul Bhargava and Akshay Venkatesh and health experts Gagandeep Kang and Anant Parekh.

H. Practice Questions for UPSC Prelims Exam

Q1) Consider the following statements:
  1. Repo or repurchase rate is the interest at which the RBI lends money to commercial banks.
  2. Repo rate is used by monetary authorities to control inflation.

Which of the given statement/s is/are correct?

a. 1 only
b. 2 only
c. Both 1 and 2
d. Neither 1 nor 2

Answer: c

Explanation:

Repo or repurchase rate is the interest at which the Reserve Bank of India (RBI) lends money to the banks. Facing shortfall of funds, the RBI lends money to the commercial banks. Repo rate is also used by monetary authorities to control inflation. On the contrary, reverse repo rate is the interest rate at which the central bank (RBI) borrows money from banks. It is a monetary policy instrument which can be used to control the money supply in the country.

Q2) Consider the following statements:
  1. India hosts 4 biodiversity hotspots.
  2. Western Ghats is identified as one of the Biodiversity hotspots in India.
  3. Western Ghats is identified by UNESCO as a Natural World Heritage Site in India.

Which of the given statement/s is/are correct?

a. 1 only
b. 1 and 2 only
c. 3 only
d. 1, 2 and 3

Answer: d

Explanation:

India hosts 4 biodiversity hotspots: the Himalayas, the Western Ghats, the Indo-Burma region and the Sundaland (Includes Nicobar group of Islands). Western Ghats is also identified by UNESCO as a Natural World Heritage Site in India.

Q3) Which of the following Schedule of the Constitution of India has 
to be amended to provide for the formation of a new State?

a. First Schedule
b. Second Schedule
c. Third Schedule
d. Ninth Schedule

Answer: a

Explanation:

Article 1 elucidates India a ”Union of States”. These states are specified in the First Schedule of the constitution. First Schedule lists the States and Territories of India and also lists if any changes to borders of them. Articles 2, 3 and 4 enable parliament by law to admit a new state, increase, decrease the area of any state.

Q4) The Constitution of India empowers the Supreme Court to adjudicate 
disputes between the Centre and the States through

a. Writ Jurisdiction
b. Advisory Jurisdiction
c. Appellate Jurisdiction
d. Original Jurisdiction

Answer: d

Explanation:

Read about Original Jurisdiction of Supreme Court.

I. UPSC Mains Practice Questions

  1. It is a well-known fact that a person, who is not convicted and only under trial, cannot cast his vote from jail or from his detention place but he can very well contest election. Police custody for any accused robs the aggrieved from his valuable right to vote. Critically comment. (10 Marks)
  2. What do you understand by the phenomenon of temperature inversion? How does it affect the weather and the habitants of a place? (10 Marks)

See previous CNA

April 19th 2019 CNA:-Download PDF Here

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