Current Affairs Questions & Answers - Apr 14, 2017

1)   On which river is India's first waterway project coming up?

a. Yamuna
b. Ganga
c. Godavari
d. Krishna
Answer  Explanation 

ANSWER: Ganga

Explanation:
The World Bank has approved a $375 million loan to India’s first waterway project.

The National Waterway 1 project is to create a water transport fairway on a 1,360-km stretch of the Ganga river between Varanasi and Haldia.

NW1 passes through one of India’s most densely populated areas, and a sizeable 40 per cent of the country’s traded goods either originate from this resource-rich region or are destined for its teeming markets.

While the region generates about 370 million tonnes of freight annually, only about 5 million tonnes currently travels by water.

The project will help build the infrastructure needed to develop water transportation in the area. It will finance the construction of six multi-modal terminals, 10 RORO jetties, ship-repair facilities as well as passenger jetties along the river.

It will also help modernise the ageing Farakka lock and add a new lock to allow for smoother passage of boats.

The project will also help the Inland Waterways Authority of India acquire a state-of-the-art River Information System as well as navigation aids to make travel on the river safer and more reliable.

The project will also support the design and development of a new fleet of low-draft barges capable of carrying up to 2,000 tonnes of cargo in these shallower depth

The US$375 million loan from the International Bank for Reconstruction and Development (IBRD) has a 7-year grace period and a maturity of 17 years.


2)   For studying the framework of which currency has Government of India formed a panel?

a. Bitcoin
b. All virtual currencies
c. Mobile wallets
d. Both a and b
Answer  Explanation 

ANSWER: Both a and b

Explanation:
The government has formed a panel to study the existing framework for virtual currencies such as bitcoin.

Dinesh Sharma, special secretary in the economic affairs department will chair the nine-member inter-disciplinary committee.

The committee has been tasked to submit its report within three months.

Circulation of virtual currencies which are also known as digital/crypto Currencies has been a cause of concern.

Reserve Bank of India had also cautioned the users, holders and traders of virtual currencies (VCs), including bitcoins, about the potential financial, operational, legal, customer protection and security related risks that they are exposing themselves to vide its press releases dated 24 December, 2013 and February 1, 2017.

The panel will also have representatives from department of economic affairs, department of financial services, department of revenue, home ministry, IT ministry, Reserve Bank of India, NITI Aayog and State Bank of India.

The committee will take stock of the present status of virtual currencies both in India and globally, examine existing global regulatory and legal structures governing them, suggest measures on consumer protection, money laundering etc; and examine any other relevant matter related to virtual currencies.


3)   Which traditional occupations scheme was relaunched by AP?

a. Adarana
b. Kiran
c. Jyoti
d. Annapurna
Answer  Explanation 

ANSWER: Adarana

Explanation:
Chief Minister N. Chandrababu Naidu announced the re-launch of ‘Adarana’, a scheme for improving traditional occupations.

On the 191st birth anniversary of social reformer Mahatma Jyotirao Phule, being celebrated for the first time as a State function, modern tools, technology, marketing, and financial support would be extended to artisans and those pursuing traditional occupations to raise their income levels and provide employment in the rural areas.

Modernising was necessary for goldsmiths, carpenters, weavers, blacksmiths, and potters, among others.

‘Adarana’ had been launched with this objective during the TDP rule earlier.

Top priority was being given to employment and education.

Financial assistance under ‘NTR Unnata and Videsi Vidyadarana’.

BC study circles were imparting coaching for competitive examinations and the unemployed who could not afford coaching were being sent to the best institutions, he said.

While an assistance of INR 2.5 lakh was given for those preparing for all-India services, INR 30,000 was given for Group II, and INR 20,000 and 19,000 respectively for bank POs and clerks.

The TDP Government had allocated INR 25,000 crore for the welfare of the BCs during the last three years and INR 10,000 crore during the year for BC welfare and development.


4)   Who took charge as whole time IBBI member on April 13, 2017?

a. Mukulita Das
b. Mukulita Sen
c. Mukulita Vijayawargiya
d. None of the above
Answer  Explanation  Related Ques

ANSWER: Mukulita Vijayawargiya

Explanation:
Mukulita Vijayawargiya today took charge as a whole time member of the Insolvency and Bankruptcy Board of India (IBBI).

She would look after the administrative law wing.

She will also look after Information Technology, Limited Insolvency Examination, National Insolvency Examination, Finance and Accounts and Communication,.

Vijayawargiya was a member of Bankruptcy Law Reforms Committee (BLRC) based on which, the Insolvency and Bankruptcy Code has been framed.

Dr. (Ms.) Vijayawargiya was a member of Bankruptcy Law Reforms Committee (BLRC) based on which, the Insolvency and Bankruptcy Code, 2016 has been framed.

She played a key role in drafting the Insolvency and Bankruptcy Code, 2016 as Additional Secretary in the Legislative Department, Ministry of Law & Justice.

Dr. Vijayawargiya served as a member of Indian Legal Service. She has vast experience of 35 years in various fields of law.

She has been associated with drafting/vetting of more than 100 legislative proposals in the legislative department.

Her previous assignment was Additional Secretary in the Legislative Department, Ministry of Law & Justice, Government of India.

She has also practiced law for a period of 6 years (1979-1985) and served as an Assistant professor at Indore for some time.

Further she has been a visiting scholar in Japan and Australia and published a number of articles in various journals and is co-author of two books.


5)   Who has been appointed the UNDP administrator w.e.f April 13, 2017?

a. Achim Steiner
b. Segolene Royal
c. Antonio Guterres
d. None of the above
Answer  Explanation  Related Ques

ANSWER: Achim Steiner

Explanation:
UN chief Antonio Guterres has named a German with extensive experience at the world organization, Achim Steiner, as the new administrator of the UN Development Programme (UNDP).

Steiner, who previously served at the UN Environment Programme and headed the UN office in Kenya, was selected to succeed Helen Clark, a former New Zealand prime minister, who has steered the UNDP since 2009.

Headquartered in New York City, the UNDP seeks to reduce poverty, improve social development and encourage women’s empowerment.

One of the candidates passed over for the post included French Environment Minister Segolene Royal, who said she was surprised because Guterres had promised a woman would take the job.

She intimated that Germany used its weight as a major UNDP donor to have Steiner chosen.

Headquartered in New York City, the UNDP seeks to reduce poverty, improve social development and encourage women’s empowerment.

Achim Steiner belongs to Germany who previously served at the UN Environment Programme and headed the UN office in Kenya.


6)   EBI has come out with a PCA for banks. What does PCA stand for?

a. Performance corrective action
b. Prompt corrective action
c. Personnel corrective action
d. None of the above
Answer  Explanation  Related Ques

ANSWER: Prompt corrective action

Explanation:
The Reserve Bank of India (RBI) has come out with a revised prompt corrective action (PCA) framework for banks, spelling out certain thresholds, the breach of which could invite resolutions such as a merger with another bank or even shutting down of the bank.

The revised norms have set out three thresholds.

The breach of the third one on capital would identify a bank as a likely candidate for resolution through tools like amalgamation, reconstruction, winding up etc.

The provisions of the revised PCA framework will be effective from April 1, 2017 based on the financials of the banks for the year ended March 31, 2017.

The framework would be reviewed after three years, the RBI said.

The thresholds are based on capital, net non-performing assets, profitability and leverage ratio.

The breach of the first threshold will invite restriction on dividend distribution or require parents of foreign banks to bring in more capital.

This will get triggered if capital adequacy ratio (including capital conservation buffer) falls below 10.25% or common equity tier-I (CET1) capital ratio falls below 6.75%.

Breach of either CAR or CET1 would trigger corrective action, the RBI said. The trigger for net NPA is 6% and 4% for leverage ratio.

Two consecutive years of negative return on assets (RoA) will also be classified in threshold one.

The breach of the second threshold will occur when the capital adequacy ratio falls below 7.75% or CET1 goes below 5.125%.

The net NPA threshold is breach of 12% and leverage ratio below 3.5%.

Three consecutive years of negative ROA will also trigger threshold two. Breach of threshold two will result in restrictions on expansion of branches and higher provisions.

The breach of the last threshold happens when CET1 falls below 3.625% and net NPA goes above 12%. Negative ROA for four consecutive years will also be considered as a breach of the third threshold vis-a-vis the profitability parameter.

Restrictions, in addition to that of threshold one and two, will be put on management compensation and directors’ fees if the third level is breached.

Corrective action that can be imposed on banks includes special audit, restructuring operations and activation of recovery plan.

The RBI has said that promoters of banks can be asked to bring in new management, or even can supersede the bank’s board, as a part of corrective action.

RBI: Know More

  • Established: 1 April 1935; 82 years ago
  • Governor: Urjit Patel
  • Central bank of Republic of India
  • Currency: Indian Rupee (₹)
  • Reserves: US$ 363.00 billion
  • Bank rate: 6.75%
  • Interest on reserves: 4.00%(market determined
  • Website: rbi.org.in


7)   Who has been named MD and CEO of Karnataka Bank?

a. P Jayarama Bhat
b. Mahabaleshwara MS
c. Madahvan MS
d. Mahadevan MS
Answer  Explanation 

ANSWER: Mahabaleshwara MS

Explanation:
Karnataka Bank Ltd has announced top-level management changes with the present Managing Director and Chief Executive Officer (MD and CEO) of the bank, P Jayarama Bhat, assuming the charge of part-time non-executive Chairman of the bank on Apr 12, 2017.

The Chief General Manager of the bank, Mahabaleshwara MS, who is appointed as MD and CEO of the bank, will assume office on April 15.

The board of directors of the bank appointed Mahabaleshwara as MD and CEO of the bank for a period of three years from the date of assuming charge, as per the approval received from Reserve Bank of India (RBI).

This was in accordance with the board’s earlier recommendation.

The board appointed Jayarama Bhat as the new Chairman of the bank, as per the approval received from RBI, in pursuant of the board’s earlier recommendation to this effect.

The Chairman’s post was vacant since October 26 on retirement of Ananthakrishna. Jayarama Bhat assumed charge as part-time non-executive Chairman of the bank on Wednesday.

Jayarama Bhat had taken the reigns of the bank as MDand CEO on July 14 2009. Initially appointed for three years, he got extension for two terms up to July 13 2018.

Karnataka Bank: Know More

  • Headquarters: Mangalore
  • CEO: Polali Jayarama Bhat (14 Jul 2009)
  • Founded: 1924
  • Motto: Your family bank. Across India
  • Number of employees: 7,669


8)   Who has been appointed Co Chairman of Infosys?

a. Ravi Ganesan
b. Ravi Venkaiah
c. Ravi Venkatesan
d. None of the above
Answer  Explanation  Related Ques

ANSWER: Ravi Venkatesan

Explanation:
Infosys on April 13, 2017 appointed Independent Director Ravi Venkatesan co-Chairman amid calls from founders to diversify the board.

The Board expansion comes against the backdrop of an ongoing tussle between the founders and the management over contentious issues such as CEO salary hike, severance package to former employees and corporate governance standards.

Venkatesan, who has been on the Infosys Board since April 2011, has made valuable contribution to the development of strategic direction of the company during his tenure, according to a company statement.


9)   Malala Yousafzai has received which honour(s) recently?

a. Youngest UN Messenger of Peace
b. Honorary US citizenship
c. Honorary Canadian citizenship
d. Both a and c
e. All the above
Answer  Explanation 

ANSWER: Both a and c

Explanation:
Malala Yousafzai is using her honorary Canadian citizenship to call on the country’s leaders to take real action to improve educational opportunities for girls.

The teenage Nobel prize winner spoke to the Canadian Parliament after becoming an honorary citizen on April 12, 2017.

She asked lawmakers to make education for girls a top priority when it hosts the G7 summit next year.

Ms. Yousafzai was 15 when she shot in the head by Taliban militants in Pakistan in 2012.

She was targeted due to her advocacy for women’s education.

She was originally scheduled to receive the honour on Oct. 22, 2014, but the ceremony was cancelled after a gunman attacked Canada’s Parliament Hill that day.

Canada: Know More

  • Capital: Ottawa
  • Dialing code: +1
  • Currency: Canadian dollar
  • Prime minister: Justin Trudeau
  • Population: 35.16 million (2013) World Bank


10)   Which is the largest ever non nuclear bomb used in combat?

a. BGU- 43
b. UBG-43
c. GBU-43
d. GUB-43
Answer  Explanation  Related Ques

ANSWER: GBU-43

Explanation:
The Massive Ordnance Air Blast bomb was dropped on a cave complex believed to be used by Islamic State, very close to the border with Pakistan.

The United States dropped a massive GBU-43 bomb, the largest non-nuclear bomb it has ever used in combat, in eastern Afghanistan on April 13, 2017 against a series of caves used by Islamic State militants.

It was the first time the United States has used this size of bomb in a conflict.

It was dropped from a MC-130 aircraft in the Achin district of Nangarhar province, close to the border with Pakistan.

Also known as the “mother of all bombs,” the GBU-43 is a 21,600 pound (9,797 kg) GPS-guided munition and was first tested in March 2003, just days before the start of the Iraq war.

The security situation in Afghanistan remains precarious, with a number of militant groups trying to claim territory more than 15 years after the US invasion which toppled the Taliban government.

The bomb was used against caves and bunkers housing fighters of the Islamic State in Afghanistan, also known as ISIS-K.

Islamic State is based overwhelmingly in Nangarhar and neighboring Kunar province.

Estimates of its strength in Afghanistan vary. US estimates the movement has only 700 fighters but Afghan officials estimate it has about 1,500.

Islamic State's offshoot in Afghanistan is suspected of carrying out several attacks on minority Shi'ite Muslim targets.

The Afghan Taliban, which is trying to overthrow the U.S.-backed government in Kabul, are fiercely opposed to Islamic State and the two group have clashed as they seek to expand territory and influence.


11)   Which is India's largest hotel network?

a. Taj
b. Oberoi
c. OYO
d. None of the above
Answer  Explanation 

ANSWER: OYO

Explanation:
India's largest hotel network OYO on April 13, 2017 announced the appointment of Suvesh Malhotra as VP-Engineering.

As part of OYO's technology leadership team, Suvesh will work on building technology as a core differentiator to deliver a best-in-industry user experience.

In this role, he will oversee OYO's consumer technology including consumer experience, ordering and payment platforms and data analytics to design and deliver solutions to meet evolving consumer needs.

Suvesh joins OYO from Amazon.com where he was leading technology for BuyVIP, a flash sales e-commerce platform.

A seasoned tech professional with 12 years of experience, Suvesh has a proven track record in implementing technology solutions for various businesses.

He is experienced in working on large-scale ecommerce platforms, distributed systems, machine learning based systems, mobile apps, social networking platforms and IoT technologies.

OYO in talks for partnerships with realty players

He was formerly the CTO of Stepout - India's largest social discovery platform. He has also worked with homeshop18 and Oracle in the past.


12)   Who is the most followed world leader on Instagram?

a. Donald Trump
b. Malcolm Turnbull
c. Narendra Modi
d. Justin Trudeau
Answer  Explanation 

ANSWER: Narendra Modi

Explanation:
Prime Minister Narendra Modi has now become the most followed world leader on Instagram.

This is according to a recent survey posted by Twiplomacy, a Twitter account that looks into the social media usage of governments and international organisation.

The survey revealed that with 6.8 million followers, PM Modi leads the way followed closely by US President Donald Trump with 6.3 million followers.

Prime Minister Modi is already the most followed leader on Twitter and Facebook with 28.9 million and over 40 million followers respectively.

Though Modi has posted only 53 photos in Instagram, compared to the US President’s 1028 posts, over the last 12 months he has enjoyed a greater interaction rate, the survey said.

But the survey also shows that Trump has had greater interaction numbers – nearly 114 million, which include comments and likes.
But when it comes to effective interactions on Instagram, the Prime Minister ranks at the top, with every post by Modi receiving an average 223,000 interactions.

The survey posted by Twiplomacy was conducted by Burson-Marsteller, a PR firm, which analysed almost 325 Instagram accounts which have a combined total of 48,705,021 followers.

Other active accounts were of MEA minister Sushma Swaraj at 3.5 posts per day.


13)   Who heads the committee to prepare the draft Ganga Act, and submitted its report on April 12, 2017?

a. Justice Girdhar Malviya
b. Justice CP Thakur
c. Justice Bobde
d. Justice Kanan
Answer  Explanation 

ANSWER: Justice Girdhar Malviya

Explanation:
The Justice Malviya Committee, constituted to prepare draft Ganga Act, submitted its report to the Union Ministry of Water Resources, River Development and Ganga Rejuvenation on 12 April 2017.

The Chairman of the committee is Justice Girdhar Malviya (Retd), who is linked with Ganga conservation movement.

The committee recognized the enormous challenges being faced to maintain the wholesomeness of National River Ganga that was perpetuated due to over stressed water demand from agricultural, domestic and industrial sectors.

About the Act

The draft Ganga Act addresses the critical issues pertaining to National River Gaga on its Cleanliness (Nirmalta) and uninterrupted e-flow (Aviralta) and provides corresponding provisions thereof.

It introduces certain stricter provision to increase accountability and responsibility for use of resources made available by National River Ganga.

The option and provision made in suggestive bills available with National Mission for Clean Ganga (NMCG) were also considered and discussed by the committee.

About the Committee: Know More

  • The Committee was constituted in July 2016 by the Union Ministry of Water Resources, River Development and Ganga Rejuvenation.
  • The members of the committee are V.K.Bhasin, Ex-Secretary of Legislative Department, A.K. Gosain, IIT Delhi and Nayan Sharma, IIT Roorkee.
  • The Member Secretary of the Committee is Sundeep, Director, National Mission for Clean Ganga.


14)   Which group is the Aditya Birla Nuvo Limited merging with?

a. Grasim
b. Godrej
c. Birla
d. TATA
Answer  Explanation  Related Ques

ANSWER: Grasim

Explanation:
Shareholders of ABNL, ABFSL and Grasim Industries Limited in April 2017 approved the amalgamation of Aditya Birla Nuvo Limited with Grasim.

The shareholders also approved the demerger and listing of Aditya Birla Financial Services Limited, part of ABFSL.

The merged Grasim entity will have a consolidated turnover of INR 59,766 crore, EBITDA of INR 11,961 crore and net profit of INR 4,245 crore for year closing March 2016.

This will be the number 1 cement company in India with the largest selling brands. The new entity will also have the distinction of being the third largest telecom operator in India and a leading player in textiles and chemicals.

Other key statistics

  • Among the top 5 fund managers in India with funds under management of Rs 2,29,500 crore
  • Among the top 7 private non-HFC NBFCs in India with a lending book of Rs 29,852 crore
  • Among the top 4 private sector life insurers and asset management companies in India
The merger is subject to the final approval from the National Company Law Tribunal (NCLT), the Bombay Stock Exchange (BSE) and the National Stock Exchange (NSE).

It is a conglomerate having leadership positions in cement, viscose staple fibre and chemicals businesses.

Its subsidiary UltraTech Cement Ltd is the largest Indian cement manufacturer with a capacity of 69.3 million tons per annum and is also the largest in the white cement and ready mix concrete segment.

It is a conglomerate with leadership positions across its businesses.

Its Financial Services Business ranks among the top 5 fund managers in India.

Its telecom venture, Idea Cellular, is among the top 3 cellular operators in India.

Recently, it received a license from RBI to commence Payments Bank operations in a joint venture with Idea Cellular.

Grasim: Know More
  • Headquarters: Nagda
  • Founded: 1948, Mumbai
  • Subsidiaries: UltraTech Cement, Grasim Bhiwani Textiles, more
  • Parent organization: Aditya Birla Group