Daily Current Affairs MCQ - Feb 15, 2021


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QUESTION: 1

Regarding the Pradhan Mantri Kaushal VikasYojana (PMKVY), consider the following statements:
1. It is the Central Sector Scheme.
2. It aims to impart short duration skill development training through Short-Term Training (STT) and Recognition of Prior Learning (RPL) to youth across all States/UTs.
Which of the statements given above is/are correct?     

Solution:

The Ministry of Skill Development and Entrepreneurship (MSDE) informed Rajya Sabha about the Status of Skilled Youths in India.

  • MSDE is implementing its flagship demand-driven Centrally Sponsored Scheme, Pradhan Mantri Kaushal VikasYojana (PMKVY), for imparting short duration skill development training through Short-Term Training (STT) and Recognition of Prior Learning (RPL) to youth across all States/UTs.

  • Jan Shikshan Sansthan (JSS) Scheme aims to provide vocational skills to non-literates, neo-literates, and school dropouts by identifying skills that have a market in the region of their establishment.

  • National Apprenticeship Promotion Scheme (NAPS) promotes apprenticeship training and increases the engagement of apprentices by providing financial support to industrial establishments undertaking apprenticeship programme under The Apprentices Act, 1961.

  • Craftsmen Training Scheme (CTS): Long term training programme in 137 trades are provided through 14,788 ITIs in the country.

QUESTION: 2

What is Sagarika, recently seen in the news?

Solution:

Prime Minister Narendra Modi inaugurated and laid the foundation stone of various projects in Kochi, Kerala.

  • The inauguration of Sagarika, the International Cruise Terminal in Kochi will cater to over lakh cruise guests. It is the country's first full-fledged international cruise terminal.

  • He also inaugurated the Marine Engineering Training Institute of Cochin Shipyard Ltd. Vigyan Sagar, the new knowledge campus of Cochin Shipyard would particularly help those wanting to study marine engineering.

  • South Coal Berth would bring down logistics costs and improve cargo capacities.

  • Propylene Derivative Petrochemical Project (PDPP) will help strengthen India’s journey towards being Aatmanirbhar as it will save foreign exchange.

  • With Ro-Ro Vessels, a distance of almost thirty kilometres on road will become 3.5 kilometres through waterways leading to less congestion and more convenience, commerce and capacity-building.

QUESTION: 3

Discovery Campus, recently seen in the news, is in:

Solution:

Prime Minister Narendra Modi inaugurated and laid the foundation stones for several key projects in Chennai.

  • The Prime Minister inaugurated the Chennai Metro Rail Phase-I extension, the fourth Railway line between Chennai Beach and Attipattu, Railway Electrification of single line section in Villupuram - Cuddalore - Mayiladuthurai - Thanjavur and Mayiladuthurai-Thiruvarur.

  • Prime Minister laid the foundation stone for the extension, renovation and modernization of the Grand Anicut Canal System and Discovery Campus of IIT Madras.

  • The Central Government has accepted the long-standing demand of DevendrakulaVelalar community to be known officially as DevendrakulaVelalar. They will now be known by their heritage name and not the six to seven names listed in the Schedule to the Constitution.

  • Government has always taken care of the welfare of Tamils in Sri Lanka. PM Modi is the only Indian Prime Minister to visit Jaffna. To boost connectivity, the railway network to Jaffna and to Mannar is being re-built. India has built the Jaffna Cultural Centre which will open soon.

QUESTION: 4

Concerning the Arjun Main Battle Tank project, consider the following statements:

1. DRDO initiated it in 1972 with the Combat Vehicles Research and Development Establishment (CVRDE) as its lead laboratory.

2. The latest version is 90 per cent indigenous content against the 41 per cent in the earlier model.

Which of the statements given above is/are correct?

Solution:

Prime Minister Modi handed over the indigenously developed Arjun Main Battle Tank (MK-1A) to the Indian Army at a ceremony in Chennai. The army will get 118 units of the Main Battle Tank, indigenously designed, developed and manufactured by CVRDE and DRDO along with 15 academic institutions, eight labs and several MSMEs.

  • The Arjun Main Battle Tank project was initiated by DRDO in 1972 with the Combat Vehicles Research and Development Establishment (CVRDE) as its lead laboratory.

  • Mass production began in 1996 at the Indian Ordnance Factory’s production facility in Avadi, Tamil Nadu.

  • The Indian Army received the first batch of 16 tanks in 2004 and they were inducted as a squadron of the 43 Armoured Regiment. In 2009, the first Arjun regiment of the Indian Army had 45 tanks.

Features:

  • The Arjun tanks stand out for their ‘Fin Stabilised Armour Piercing Discarding Sabot (FSAPDS)’ ammunition and 120-mm calibre rifled gun.

  • It also has a computer-controlled integrated fire control system with a stabilised sighting that works in all lighting conditions. The secondary weapons include a co-axial 7.62-mm machine gun for anti-personnel and a 12.7-mm machine gun for anti-aircraft and ground targets.

  • The Mk-1A version has 14 major upgrades on the earlier version. It is also supposed to have missile firing capability as per the design, but this feature will be added later as final testing of the capability is still on.

  • However, the biggest achievement with the latest version is 54.3 per cent indigenous content against the 41 per cent in the earlier model.

QUESTION: 5

The 17th-century Persian language text Mirat-i-Masudi, written by:

Solution:

Prime Minister Modi will lay the foundation stone of Maharaja Suheldev Memorial on 16th February 2021.

  • The event in Bahraich, Uttar Pradesh marks the birth anniversary of Maharaja Suheldev.

  • Suhaldev or Suheldev was an Indian king from Shravasti, popularly known to have defeated and killed the Ghaznavid general Ghazi Saiyyad Salar Masud at Bahraich in 1034 CE.

  • He is mentioned in the 17th-century Persian-language historical romance Mirat-i-Masudi written by Abd-ur-Rahman Chishti during the reign of the Mughal emperor Jahangir.

  • Since the 20th century, various Hindu nationalist groups have characterized him as a Hindu King who defeated a Muslim invader.

QUESTION: 6

Chittaura Lake, recently seen in the news, is in:

Solution:

Prime Minister Modi will lay the foundation stone of development work of Chittaura Lake on 16th February 2021.

  • Chittaura Jheel, also known as Ashtwarka jheel is a lake in Uttar Pradesh.

  • It is situated about 8 km from Bahraich city, on Gonda road, near Jittora or Chittaura village.

  • A small river, Teri Nadi, flows from this lake.

  • Chittaura Jheel is a Hindu pilgrimage site. According to local legends, Ashtwarka Muni, the Guru of Maharaja Janak used to live here in his ashram.

  • The area beside the lake is also the site of an 11th-century battle between the Hindu king Suhaldev and the Muslim invader Ghazi Saiyyad Salar Masud.

QUESTION: 7

Catalonia is an autonomous community in which of the following country?

Solution:

Spain's Catalonia voted in an election overshadowed by the pandemic and which Madrid hopes will unseat the region's ruling separatists more than three years after a failed bid to break away from Spain. The vote in the wealthy northeastern region could see a high level of abstentions as Spain battles a third wave of coronavirus infections.

  • Catalonia is an autonomous community in the northeastern corner of Spain.

  • Catalonia consists of four provinces: Barcelona, Girona, Lleida, and Tarragona.

  • It is bordered by France (Occitanie) and Andorra to the north, the Mediterranean Sea to the east, and the Spanish autonomous communities of Aragon to the west and Valencia to the south.

  • Since the 2010s there has been growing support for Catalan independence. On 27 October 2017, the Catalan Parliament declared unilateral independence following a disputed referendum.

Arguments for demanding independence:

  • Catalonia has a distinct history, culture and language. First referenced in the 12th century, a defined region of Catalonia had existed for more than 250 years before it joined Spain in the 16th Century.

  • From 1939-1975, under the military government of Francisco Franco, Catalan culture was suppressed.

  • Since Spain's 2008 debt crisis, the push for full autonomy has gathered pace. It is argued that Catalonia, which is one of Spain's wealthiest regions, offers more financial support to Spain than it receives from the central government.

QUESTION: 8

With reference to the Mandarin duck, consider the following statements:

1. It is a “small-exotic looking bird” native to East Asia.

2. Its IUCN Status is Endangered.

Which of the statements given above is/are correct?

Solution:

Floating in the Maguri-Motapung beel (or wetland) in Assam’s Tinsukia district for over a week is the spectacular and rare Mandarin duck. First spotted on February 8 by Madhab Gogoi, the duck has since become the star of the wetland.

  • Considered the most beautiful duck in the world, the Mandarin duck, or the (Aix galericulata) was first identified by Swedish botanist, physician and zoologist Carl Linnaeus in 1758.

  • It is a “small-exotic looking bird” native to East Asia.

  • The migratory duck breeds in Russia, Korea, Japan and northeastern parts of China, explained Gogoi. It now has established populations in Western Europe and America too.

  • The duck, however, rarely visits India as it does not fall in its usual migratory route.

  • Its IUCN Status is Least Concern.

  • While the duck is not a globally threatened species, spotting one is always considered significant because they only make “rare appearances.”

  • The Maguri Motapung wetland — an Important Bird Area as declared by the Bombay Natural History Society — is located close to the Dibru Saikhowa National Park in Upper Assam.

  • In May 2020, the beel was adversely affected by a blowout and fire at an Oil India Limited-owned gas well.

QUESTION: 9

Kotia cluster, recently seen in news, is a dispute between Andhra Pradesh and which of the following state?

Solution:

Andhra Pradesh held panchayat elections in three villages in the Kotia cluster, which is at the centre of a dispute between Andhra Pradesh and Odisha. This is the first time Andhra has held panchayat polls in any of these villages.

  • With a population of nearly 5,000, these villages are located on a remote hilltop on the inter-state border and are inhabited by Kondh tribals.

  • The region is also rich in mineral resources like gold, platinum, manganese, bauxite, graphite and limestone.

  • In the early 1980s, Odisha filed a case in the Supreme Court demanding right and possession of jurisdiction over the 21 villages.

  • In 2006 however, the court ruled that since disputes belonging to the state boundaries are not within the Supreme Court's jurisdiction, the matter can only be resolved by Parliament and passed a permanent injunction on the disputed area.

QUESTION: 10

Consider the following statements:

1. The Ministry of Road Transport and Highways has recently issued orders that all steel – whether produced from ore, billets, pellets or melting of scrap - would be allowed for National Highway construction, as long as it meets the standards required for specific grades of steel.

2. Earlier, the contract provisions required the use of steel produced by primary/integrated steel producers only.

Which of the statements given above is/are correct?

Solution:

The Ministry of Road Transport and Highways has issued orders that all steel – whether produced from ore, billets, pellets or melting of scrap - would be allowed to be used for National Highway construction, as long as it meets the standards required for specific grades of steel.

  • The steel proposed to be used would be tested in NABL-accredited laboratories as a third party check before approval.

  • Earlier, the contract provisions required the use of steel produced by primary/integrated steel producers only.

  • In view of the increase in steel prices, which can impact the cost of building national highways, Union Minister for Road Transport & Highways had suggested the need to re-look at all conditions which could be restrictive.

  • With this step, the supplier base for steel used in the construction of national highways would increase, leading to more competition and better price discovery by the markets.

  • This is also part of the minister's continuous effort to reduce costs through the use of new technology, reducing restrictions on suppliers and making the procurement system transparent.