UPSC Exam Comprehensive News Analysis Feb04 2019

TABLE OF CONTENTS

A. GS1 Related
B. GS2 Related
WELFARE SCHEMES
1. Payouts to ryots from this month itself
2. Kerala catching up with superfoods
POLITY
1. Denial of consent can’t stall ongoing probes
INTERNATIONAL RELATIONS
1. A New Arms Race
C. GS3 Related 
ENVIRONMENT
1. Plan to ban water sachets in Araku Valley
ECONOMY
1. A ‘pink revolution’ quietly takes shape in Maharashtra
SCIENCE AND TECHNOLOGY
1. Inkjet solar panels set to reshape green energy
D. GS 4 Related
E. Editorials
POLITY AND GOVERNANCE
1. Standard deviations – On delays in releasing key employment data
2. Legitimacy of the basic structure - On Basic Structure of India’s Constitution
INTERNATIONAL RELATIONS
1. Hawkish move – On USA’s withdrawal from the Intermediate-Range Nuclear Forces (INF) treaty
F. Tidbits
1. Retracing their roots to Southeast Asia
G. Prelims Facts
H. UPSC Prelims Practice Questions
I. UPSC Mains practice Questions

A. GS1 Related

Nothing here today!!!

B. GS2 Related

Category: WELFARE SCHEMES

1. Payouts to ryots from this month itself

Context: According to the Finance Ministry the government will start disbursing a substantial amount under the income support scheme for small farmers in the month of February itself as beneficiary data are already in place.

Pradhan Mantri Kisan Samman Nidhi (PM-KISAN) Scheme, under which Rs.6,000 per year would be provided to farmers holding cultivable land of up to 2 hectare was recently announced in the interim budget.

Pradhan Mantri Kisan Samman Nidhi (PM-KISAN) Scheme

  • This programme will provide the vulnerable landholding farmer families, having cultivable land upto 2 hectares a direct income support at the rate of Rs 6,000 per year.
  • This income support will be transferred directly into the bank accounts of beneficiary farmers, in three equal instalments of Rs. 2,000 each.
  • The programme will be funded 100 per cent by the Central government. It is expected that around 12 crore small and marginal farmer families are expected to benefit from this programme.
  • 12 crore beneficiaries have been identified with the help of Agriculture Census Data 2015-16
  • The programme would take effect from 1st December 2018 and the first installment for the period upto 31st March 2019 would be paid during this year itself.
  • The annual expenditure of the programme is around Rs 75,000 crore.

Way forward

This programme would not only provide assured supplemental income to the most vulnerable farmer families, but would also meet their emergent needs especially before the harvest season. It would pave the way for the farmers to earn and live a respectable living.

2. Kerala catching up with superfoods

Context: the Kerala Agriculture Department is earmarking farm space in more districts for growing nutrient-rich millets with ‘superfood’ and ‘eat smart’ strategies forming the main ingredients of the latest dietary mantras.

The Kerala government moves to expand the Millet Village scheme.

The Millet Village scheme

  • Kerala government formulated a special scheme to promote the cultivation of cereals such as millet, ragi, bajra and maize by setting up a millet village at Attappady.
  • The project aimed at protecting seeds of traditional varieties of millets and ensures food security and livelihood for tribals.

Why millets?

  • Millets are naturally rich in nutrients such as iron, zinc and calcium, among others.
  • Till recently, these grains were addressed as coarse cereals, now, they have been renamed as nutri-cereals.
  • It requires minimum inputs and is an economically viable option if marketing avenues are created. 
  • Millets can grow in poor soil conditions with less water, fertiliser and pesticides.
  • They can withstand higher temperatures, making them the perfect choice as ‘climate-smart’ cereals.
  • As against the requirement of 5,000 litres of water to grow one kilogram of rice, millets need hardly 250-300 litres.
  • Millets are being seen as a solution to lifestyle disorders.
  • As urban consumers cope with a range of lifestyle-related disorders, these grains are gradually gaining in popularity.

Benefits:

  • Small millets such as kodo and kutki, among others, have a cultivation history of 3,000-5,000 years and were major food crops once upon a time.
  • They might prove to be a potential new tool for the government to fight socio-economic issues such as malnutrition and rural poverty while addressing sustainability concerns.
  • Millets are grown in about 21 States. There is a major impetus in Karnataka, Andhra Pradesh, Tamil Nadu, Kerala, Telangana, Uttarakhand, Jharkhand, Madhya Pradesh and Haryana.
  • The government has been trying to push millets in Manipur, Meghalaya and Nagaland, because it is a major staple diet for the tribes in that region.

The National Millet Mission

  • The Millet Mission, under the National Food Security Mission, is expected to be rolled out in April 2019, for the next few years.
  • To achieve nutritional security the Centre has been promoting millets on a ‘mission mode’.
  • The Centre’s Millet Mission will focus on developing farm gate processing and empowering farmers through collectives, while focusing on value-addition and aggregation of the produce.
  • To ensure that farmers have access to better quality seeds, the mission proposes to create seed hubs across the country and focus on crop improvement.
  • In 2016-17, the area under millets stood at 14.72 million hectares, down from 37 million ha in 1965-66, prior to the pre-Green Revolution era.
  • This decline was largely due to change in dietary habits (induced by a cultural bias against millets post-Green Revolution), low-yield of millets, and conversion of irrigated area towards rice and wheat.

Category: POLITY

1. Denial of consent can’t stall ongoing probes

Category: INTERNATIONAL RELATIONS

1. A New Arms Race

Context: The U.S recently pulled out from the Intermediate Range Nuclear Forces Treaty with Russia.

C. GS3 Related

Category: ENVIRONMENT

1. Plan to ban water sachets in Araku Valley

Context: Integrated Tribal Development Authority (ITDA) of Andhra Pradesh is planning to enforce a prohibition on the sale of plastic water sachets at tourist spots.

According to officials, water sachets amount to around 40%-50% of the total plastic waste dumped at the tourist destinations.

These sachets are inadvertently consumed by stray cattle, putting their lives at risk, apart from environment pollution.

Harmful effects of Plastic on:

Environment:

  • The surfaces of tiny fragments of plastic may carry disease-causing organisms and act as a vector for diseases in the environment. Microplastics can also interact with soil fauna, affecting their health and soil functions.
  • For example, earthworms, make their burrows differently when microplastics are present in the soil, which affects the earthworm’s fitness and the soil condition.
  • Chlorinated plastic can release harmful chemicals into the surrounding soil, which can then seep into groundwater or other surrounding water sources, and also the ecosystem.
  • This causes a range of potentially harmful effects on the species that drink the water.
  • With the breakdown of plastic particles, they gain new physical and chemical properties, increasing the risk that they will have a toxic effect on organisms.
  • Also it is observed that the larger the number of potentially affected species and ecological functions, the more likely it is that toxic effects will occur.

Health:

  • Additives such as phthalates and Bisphenol A (widely known as BPA) leach out of plastic particles.
  • These additives are known for their hormonal effects and can disrupt the hormone system of vertebrates and invertebrates alike. In addition, nano-sized particles may cause inflammation, traverse cellular barriers, and even cross highly selective membranes such as the blood-brain barrier or the placenta.
  • Within the cell, they can trigger changes in gene expression and biochemical reactions.
  • It has already been shown that when passing the blood-brain barrier nanoplastics have a behaviour-changing effect in fish.

Way forward

  • It is imperative to ensure alternative drinking water facilities for tourists in tourist spots keeping a check that there is no harm to health and environment.
  • Also creating awareness about the environmental hazards associated with plastic is a must.

Category: ECONOMY

1. A ‘pink revolution’ quietly takes shape in Maharashtra

Context: A ‘pink revolution’ is quietly taking shape in Maharashtra with an objective to breed imported pigs to address the problem of protein deficiency in a sizeable section of the population that has been deprived of access to affordable meat besides providing livelihood to farmers.

Concerns:

Many consumers stay away from consuming pork as local pigs are mostly bred under unhygienic conditions.

Highlights:

  • There is a plan to address this concern through supply of hygienic pork produced from imported breeds in clean environment and by launching an education campaign.
  • An ecosystem for supply of high quality pork is being created by a Mumbai based company supported by the Maharashtra government’s policy.
  • The company is planning to partner with farmers by supplying them pigs imported from Canada.
  • They would be bred under hygienic conditions for production of high quality meat.
  • The company plans to build a fully-equipped international-standard piggery which would support animal husbandry, food and medical industry.

Benefits:

  • While it would create a comprehensive value chain for pork production, it would also supply high quality animals for medical and research industry (organ transplant and insulin).
  • Commercial pig farming in India for meat production is one of the best and profitable business ideas. 

Challenges:

  • Indian pig breeds are not suitable for high quality pork production.
  • Indian pork is sold at about Rs.250 per kg compared with international quality processed pork which is sold at Rs.1, 200- 3,000 per kg.

Pink Revolution:

  • The Pink Revolution initiative is scheduled to start off in the second quarter of 2019.
  • The ‘pink revolution’ targets to produce five lakh high quality pigs over a period of 5-6 years.
  • ‘Pink revolution’ plans to offer ‘farm to market’ solution.

Way Forward:

The need of the hour is to enhance the farmer’s potential genetically superior quality animals and meeting consumers’ demand for safe and healthy meat and health industry’s requirement for quality animals. It is an industry with huge potential.

Category: SCIENCE AND TECHNOLOGY

1. Inkjet solar panels set to reshape green energy

Context: Polish physicist and businesswoman Olga Malinkiewicz has developed a novel inkjet processing method for perovskites, a new generation of cheaper solar cells that makes it possible to produce solar panels under lower temperatures, thus sharply reducing costs.

Perovskite solar cells

  • Perovskite solar cells have the potential to address the world energy poverty.
  • These are solar panels coated with the mineral and are light, flexible, efficient and inexpensive and come in varying hues and degrees of transparency.
  • These solar panels can easily be fixed to almost any surface be it laptop, car, drone, spacecraft or building to produce electricity, including in the shade or indoors.

Background

  • Perovskite was first identified by German mineralogist Gustav Rose in the 1830s while prospecting in the Ural Mountains and named after Russian mineralogist Lev Perovski.
  • Synthesising the atomic structure of perovskite became easier in the following decades.
  • It was in 2009 that a Japanese researcher Tsutomu Miyasaka discovered that perovskites can be used to form photovoltaic solar cells.
  • Initially, the process was complicated and required ultra-high temperatures, so only materials that could withstand extreme heat like glass could be coated with perovskite cells.
  • In 2013, it was figured out that there is a way to coat flexible foil with perovskites using an evaporation method.
  • Later, an inkjet printing procedure was developed that lowered production costs enough to make mass production economically feasible. 
  • More or less transparent, the panels also respond to design requirements.

D. GS4 Related

Nothing here for today!!!

E. Editorials

Category: POLITY AND GOVERNANCE

1. Standard deviations – On delays in releasing key employment data

Context:

National Statistical Commission’s (NSC) acting chief PC Mohanan and member JV Meenakshi – he two non-official members have resigned over “disagreements” with the government over the release of a jobs survey.

National Statistical Commission:

  • The Government of India ordered setting up National Statistical Commission on 1 June 2005 on the recommendation of Rangarajan commission.
  • It is an autonomous body formed in July 2005.
  • A key role of the NSC, is to verify whether data being put in the public domain are reliable and adequate.
  • The objective of its constitution is to reduce the problems faced by statistical agencies in the country in relation to collection of data.
  • Statistical agencies like the Central Statistical Office (CSO) and the National Sample Survey Organisation (NSSO) face numerous problems in collecting data from State and Central government departments, but an autonomous body like the NSC is thought to be more able to coordinate things as a statutory status would lend it teeth.
  • Information has been collected and disseminated by successive governments under laid-down schedules, earning Indian data greater global trust than most other emerging market peers, especially China.

Issue:

  • The commission is mandated to have seven members. Three posts had been vacant before the resignations.
  • With the two members quitting, the NSC now has only two members — Chief Statistician Pravin Srivastava and NITI Aayog CEO Amitabh Kant. 
  • The latest exits underline the controversies that the centre has faced amid opposition allegations of gaming of data, for example, on joblessness and GDP.
  • The resignations could also be related to unease about the recently unveiled back-series data on the economy, which recorded slower growth during the UPA-led government’s rule, and were released by the NITI Aayog bypassing convention and the commission’s views.

Details:

  • Reports suggest that the findings of the new Periodic Labour Force Survey, for July 2017-December 2018, are not too flattering, with unemployment registering a five-decade high.
  • On the question of job-creation for the youth, credible data are missing.
  • The National Sample Survey Organisation’s quinquennial employment surveys were to be conducted in 2016-17. The year was switched to 2017-18 as the new Labour Force Survey was being prepared to replace it.
  • Separately, a quarterly survey of select employment-intensive sectors initiated by the Labour Bureau after the 2008 global financial crisis, that provided some clarity on ground realities, was inexplicably discarded. Instead, proxy data from enrolments into social security schemes for formal sector employees are being touted as a sign of job-creation: economists have rightly called them out as inaccurate.
  • The Centre for Monitoring Indian Economy has pegged job losses in 2018 at 11 million based on its regular employment surveys.
  • The government’s approach to jobs-related data may be due to its disastrous demonetisation gambit which hurt supply chains and informal jobs in the economy and whose effects have lingered.
  • In contrast, the NSSO surveys of 2009-10 that revealed little good news on household incomes and job-creation. The previous government didn’t hesitate from releasing the data, took criticism on its chin, explained it was an exceptional situation (after-effects of the global financial crisis) and commissioned another set of surveys in 2011-12 to correct for the timing.

Conclusion:

Delay in releasing key employment data has undermined the credibility of data officialdom. The government should ensure that the data must not be withheld and India’s statistical integrity must not be invalidated.

2. Legitimacy of the basic structure – On Basic Structure of India’s Constitution

Context:

There have been protests over the rule’s legitimacy in certain quarters in response to challenges made to the recently introduced 103rd Constitutional Amendment, which provides for reservations based on economic criteria in government jobs and education. The Act amends Articles 15 and 16 of the Constitution, by adding a clause which allows states to make “special provision for the advancement of any economically weaker sections of citizens.

Background:

Basic Structure of the Constitution:

  • The basic structuredoctrine is an Indian judicial principle that the Constitution of India has certain basic features that cannot be altered or destroyed through amendments by the parliament.
  • However, the word “Basic Structure” is not mentioned in the constitutionof India.
  • In 1967, the Supreme in Golaknath v. State of Punjab held that Fundamental Rights included in Part III of the Constitution are given a “transcendental position” and are beyond the reach of Parliament. It also pronounced any amendment that abridges a Fundamental Right as unconstitutional.
  • By 1973, the basic structure doctrine triumphed in Justice Hans Raj Khanna’s judgment in the landmark decision of Kesavananda Bharati v. State of Kerala. Previously, the Supreme Court had held that the power of Parliament to amend the Constitution was unfettered. However, in this landmark ruling, the Court adjudicated that while Parliament has “wide” powers, it did not have the power to destroy or emasculate the basic elements or fundamental features of the constitution.
  • The basic structure doctrine has since gained widespread acceptance and legitimacy due to subsequent cases and judgments. 
  • Some of the features of the Constitution termed as “basic” are listed below:
  1. Supremacy of the Constitution
  2. Rule of law
  3. The principle of Separation of Powers
  4. The objectives specified in the Preamble to the Constitution
  5. Judicial Review
  6. Independence of Judiciary
  7. The “essence” of Fundamental Rights in Part III etc..

Editorial Analysis:

It has now been more than 45 years since the Supreme Court ruled in Kesavananda Bharati v. State of Kerala that Parliament’s power to amend the Constitution was not unlimited, that the Constitution’s basic structure was inviolable. But as entrenched as this doctrine might now be, it remains, to some, a source of endless aversion.

  • The common criticism is that the doctrine has no basis in the Constitution’s language.
  • The phrase “basic structure”, it’s argued, finds no mention anywhere in the Constitution.
  • What’s more, beyond its textual illegitimacy, its detractors also believe the doctrine accords the judiciary a power to impose its philosophy over a democratically formed government, resulting in something akin to what Union Minister Arun Jaitley once termed as a “tyranny of the unelected”.
  • Unquestionably, some of this censure is a result of the Supreme Court’s occasionally muddled interpretation of what the Constitution’s basic structure might be. But to reject the doctrine altogether because the judiciary sometimes botches is not the right approach. For not only is the basic structure canon legally legitimate, in that it is deeply rooted in the Constitution’s text and history, but it also possesses substantial moral value, in that it strengthens democracy by limiting the power of a majoritarian government to undermine the Constitution’s central ideals.
  • Ever since the Constitution was first amended in 1951, the true extent of Parliament’s power to amend the document has been acutely contested.

Interpreting ‘amendment’:

  • If Parliament’s powers are considered infinite, the parliamentary executive can be removed, fundamental rights can be abrogated, and, in effect, what is a sovereign democratic republic can be converted into a totalitarian regime.
  • In Kesavananda Bharati, it was this formulation that shaped Justice H.R. Khanna’s legendary, controlling opinion. The judge said: “Any amending body organized within the statutory scheme, howsoever verbally unlimited its power, cannot by its very structure change the fundamental pillars supporting its Constitutional authority.”
  • According to him, what could emerge out of an amendment was only an altered form of the existing Constitution and not an altogether new and radical Constitution.
  • This interpretation, as Sudhir Krishnaswamy has shown, in some depth, in his book, Democracy and Constitutionalism in India, is compelling for at least two reasons. First, it represents a careful reading of the text of Article 368, and, second, it delivers an attractive understanding of the moral principles that anchor the Constitution.
  • Article 368 grants Parliament the power to amend the Constitution, making it clear that on the exercise of that power “the Constitution shall stand amended”. Therefore, if what has to remain after an amendment is “the Constitution”, naturally a change made under Article 368 cannot create a new constitution.
  • Such an interpretation is also supported by the literal meaning of the word “amendment”, which is defined as “a minor change or addition designed to improve a text”. Hence, for an amendment to be valid, the constitution that remains standing after such a change must be the Constitution of India; it must continue to possess, in its essence, those features that were foundational to it even at its conception.

Questions to ponder:

Were an amendment to be introduced relinquishing control over India to a foreign power, would it not result in the creation of a constitution that is no longer the Constitution of India? Would not such an amendment strike at the root of the Constitution’s Preamble, which, in its original form, established India as a sovereign democratic republic?

 On any reasonable analysis it ought to, therefore, be clear that the basic structure doctrine is not only grounded in the Constitution’s text and history, but that it also performs an important democratic role in ensuring that majoritarian governments do not destroy the Constitution’s essential character.

  • It must be remembered that constitutions are not like ordinary laws. Interpreting one is always likely to be an exercise fraught with controversy.
  • But such is the nature of our political design that the court, as an independent body, is tasked with the role of acting as the Constitution’s final interpreter, with a view to translating abstract principles into “concrete constitutional commands” as Justice Robert H. Jackson of the U.S. Supreme Court once wrote.
  • It may well be the case that the basic structure doctrine is derived from the abstract. But that scarcely means it doesn’t exist within the Constitution.

Conclusion:

The basic structure doctrine has been applied by the judges every now and then. It has till date proved to be a very effective tool in deciding the validity of the constitutional amendments. The doctrine, however, had not yet been defined in any of the judgements adequately and sufficiently. There are many things which are basic to the constitution and they cannot be decided beforehand. While the idea that there is such a thing as a basic structure to the Constitution is well established its contents cannot be completely determined with any measure of finality until a judgement of the Supreme Court spells it out. Nevertheless the sovereign, democratic and secular character of the polity, rule of law, independence of the judiciary, fundamental rights of citizens etc. are some of the essential features of the Constitution that have appeared time and again in the apex court’s pronouncements.

Category: INTERNATIONAL RELATIONS

1. Hawkish move – On USA’s withdrawal from the Intermediate-Range Nuclear Forces (INF) treaty

Context:

The United States and Russia suspended a crucial nuclear weapons treaty, a move that has sparked concerns of a budding arms race between the world’s two biggest nuclear powers. Citing Russian non-compliance, U.S. President Donald Trump announced on 20 October 2018 that he was withdrawing the U.S. from the treaty. The U.S. formally suspended the treaty on 1 February 2019, as did Russia the following day.

Background:

  • The Intermediate-Range Nuclear Forces Treaty(INF Treaty) between the United States of America and the Union of Soviet Socialist Republics on the Elimination of Their Intermediate-Range and Shorter-Range Missiles was a 1987 arms control agreement between the United States and the Soviet Union.
  • The Intermediate-Range Nuclear Forces, or INF, Treaty, prohibited the production or testing of ground-launched cruise missiles with a range of 300 to 3,400 miles (500- to 5,500-km).
  • It did not cover air- or sea-launched weapons, such as the American Tomahawk and Russian Kalibr cruise missiles fired from ships, submarines or airplanes, although those missiles fly similar distances.

How was the INF Treaty helpful?

The INF Treaty itself consisted of three parts: a Memorandum of Understanding on Data, a Protocol on Inspections, and a Protocol on Elimination.

  • The MoU was a comprehensive exchange on missile and systems agreed to under the treaty, exchanged on the day of the signing.
  • For the United States, the INF was exceptionally important because the Russians agreed to scrap their SS-20 mobile nuclear missiles and the US agreed to eliminate its Pershing and nuclear-capable cruise missiles.
  • Germany, not a signatory, agreed to eliminate its 72 Pershing missiles, facilitating the deal.
  • A total of 2,692 missiles were eliminated.
  • The INF treaty has kept nuclear-tipped cruise missiles off the European continent for three decades.

Details:

  1. Russia appears to have been covertly violating it in letter and spirit:
  • The U.S. in 2008 expressed concern over the Russian Novator 9M729 missile tests and in 2014 alleged that Moscow was testing a ground-based cruise missile. Yet, the U.S. response cannot be regarded as purely retaliatory. Both Mr. Trump and his National Security Adviser John Bolton are on the record expressing what some consider to be a sense of disregard for arms control agreements.
  • Trump, who scuppered the nuclear agreement with Iran, has hinted he would refuse to abide by a treaty that other parties were disregarding. There is now a sense of alarm that the New Strategic Arms Reduction Treaty (START), which limits both countries’ arsenal of intercontinental ballistic missiles, and will lapse in 2021, might be scrapped next.
  1. China’s rise as a regional hegemon:
  • At the heart of this worrisome echo of the Cold War years is the changing balance of power in global nuclear politics heralded by China’s rise as a regional hegemon; its growing arsenal poses a threat in the eyes of strategists in Washington.
  • While the Chinese military is carving out a greater sphere of influence in the Western Pacific, the I.N.F. Treaty constrains the United States from placing short- and intermediate-range missiles on land near China as a deterrent.
  • For this and other reasons, Mr. Trump and his national security adviser, John R. Bolton, have called the I.N.F. Treaty outdated.
  • In 2018, the U.S. Nuclear Posture Review noted that Beijing was steaming forward with the expansion of its cruise-missile arsenal, potentially neutralising the capability of American warships that could seek to approach the Chinese coastline during a standoff.
  1. Ground-launched missiles are cheaper than cruise missiles:
  • Trump’s thinking may also rest on the fact that he could now develop ground-launched missiles, and perhaps keep Moscow’s aggression in check through military-posture superiority, and also save the exchequer some cash, for this option is cheaper than cruise missiles that can be fired from aircraft, ships, or submarines.

Europe’s Concerns:

  • European leaders have been among the most vocal protesters of the treaty withdrawal. While they agree with the United States that Russia’s new intermediate range missiles threaten Europe, they say the answer is to renegotiate the accord, not scrap it.
  • Shifting geo-politics also requires that European concerns be factored into strategic discussions on the INF, particularly because it is Europe that is most immediately threatened by the Russian stockpile.

Conclusion:

The treaty was a product of its time – and times change. Nevertheless, in pulling out of the INF, USA is effectively throwing away leverage it may have had with Russia on an issue of global concern.

F. Tidbits

1. Retracing their roots to Southeast Asia

Context: About 400 people would be travelling to Thailand to retrace their cultural roots and also promote trade and tourism, at a first-of-its-kind event in Bangkok on February 9 and 10.

Many communities in the northeast, such as the Ahoms and the Shyams in Assam, had migrated from the Thailand-South China-Myanmar region centuries ago.

Benefits:

Apart from meetings on trade and investment, the focus is on cultural exchanges. 

Aimed at bridging ties between India’s northeastern region and Southeast Asia, this initiative, is based on historic links snapped by political boundaries.

G. Prelims Fact

Nothing here for today!!!

H. Practice Questions for UPSC Prelims Exam

Question 1. Consider the following statements for Pradhan Mantri Kisan Samman Nidhi 
(PM-KISAN) Scheme:
  1. This programme will provide the vulnerable landholding farmer families, having cultivable land upto 2 hectares a direct income support at the rate of Rs 6,000 per year.
  2. The programme will be funded 100 per cent by the Central government
  3. This programme would not only provide assured supplemental income to the most vulnerable farmer families, but would also meet their emergent needs especially before the harvest season.

Which of the following statements is/are correct?

  1. Only 1
  2. Only 2
  3. Only 2 and 3
  4. All of the above

See

Answer
Question 2. Consider the following statements about millets:
  1. Millets are naturally rich in nutrients such as iron, zinc and calcium
  2. Kodo and Kutki are a variety of small millets.
  3. They can withstand higher temperatures, making them the perfect choice as ‘climate-smart’ cereals.
  4. Millets can grow in poor soil conditions with less water, fertiliser and pesticides.

Which of the above statements is/are correct?

  1. Only 1
  2. Only 2
  3. Only 1, 3 and 4
  4. All of the above

See

Answer
Question 3. Consider the following statements:
  1. The surfaces of tiny fragments of plastic may carry disease-causing organisms and act as a vector for diseases in the environment.
  2. Within the cell, they can trigger changes in gene expression and biochemical reactions.
  3. Additives such as phthalates and Bisphenol A (widely known as BPA) known for their harmful hormonal effects leach out of plastic particles.

Which of the following statements is/are correct?

  1. Only 1
  2. Only 2
  3. Only 1 and 3
  4. All of the above

See

Answer
Question 4. Consider the following statements about Perovskite solar cells:
  1. These are solar panels coated with the mineral and are light, flexible, efficient and inexpensive and come in varying hues and degrees of transparency.
  2. These solar panels can easily be fixed to almost any surface be it laptop, car, drone, spacecraft or building to produce electricity, including in the shade or indoors.
  3. Perovskite solar cells have the potential to address the world energy poverty.

Which of the following statements is/are correct?

  1. Only 1
  2. Only 2
  3. Only 2 and 3
  4. All of the above

See

Answer
Question 5. Consider the following statements:
  1. Judicial review is the power of courts to decide the validity of acts of the legislative and executive branches of government.
  2. The decisions of the executive and administrative agencies can also be overruled by the courts as not conforming to the law or the Constitution.
  3. The Indian Constitution does not explicitly mention judicial review.

Which of the following statements is/are incorrect?

  1. Only 1
  2. Only 3
  3. Only 2 and 3
  4. None of the above

See

Answer

I. Practice Questions for UPSC Mains Exam

  1. Analyse the importance of Judicial Review in India citing examples. (250 words)
  2. The year 2018 was declared as the year of Millets, discuss the importance of this “super food” in the context of India. (250 words)

See previous CNA

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