1) National Institution for Transforming India/NITI Aayog signed an SOI for ITS with which organization?
- Published on 22 Sep 17
d. IRF Geneva
ANSWER: IRF Geneva
The National Institution for Transforming India (NITI Aayog) and the International Road Federation, Geneva (IRF Geneva) have on 21st Sept 2017 signed a Statement of Intent (SoI) to cooperate in the field of Intelligent Transportation Systems (ITS).
The objective of the SoI is to create a national platform, involving all relevant Government of India stakeholders, Indian and foreign companies active in the sector, and relevant technical experts for the purpose of developing a National ITS Policy covering:
1) Traffic Management,
2) Parking Management,
3) Electronic Enforcement of Traffic Rules and Regulations,
4) Fleet Management and Monitoring,
5) Innovation in the field of ITS, and
6) Education in the field of ITS.
Objectives of National ITS Policy
- The objectives of this national ITS Policy will be to contribute to reducing urban traffic congestion, improving the situation around parking of vehicles in cities, improving road safety, and improving the security of passenger and goods traffic.
- The work of this National Platform will provide a coherent and consistent National ITS Policy covering domains such as traffic and parking management, enforcement, and security.
2) ILO has released Global Estimates of Modern Slavery with which organisation?
- Published on 22 Sep 17
a. Walk Free Foundation
b. Born Free Foundation
c. Be Free Foundation
d. Set Free Foundation
ANSWER: Walk Free Foundation
As per the 2017 Global Estimates of modern slavery released by the International Labour Organisation (ILO) and the Walk Free Foundation (WFF) on 20th Sept, an estimated 40.3 million people were victims of slavery worldwide.
Women accounted for 71% (29 million), while children constituted 25% (10 million) of modern slaves.
Of the 40.3 million trapped in slavery, 25 million were in forced labour and 15 million in forced marriage.
Of the 25 million, 16 million were exploited by the private sector, 4.8 million were in forced sexual exploitation, and 4.1 million were in forced labour imposed by state authorities.
Debt bondage was responsible for 50% of all forced labour in the private sector.
This proportion rose to 70% for adults forced to work in agriculture, domestic work, or manufacturing.
More women (9.2 million, or 57.6%) than men (6.8 million, or 42.4%) were affected by privately imposed forced labour.
The largest share of adults who were in forced labour were domestic workers (24%), followed by the construction sector (18%), manufacturing (15%), and agriculture and fishing (11%).
Women and Children in Slavery: Know More
Global Estimates: Modern Slavery
- Women represented 99% of the victims of forced labour in the commercial sex industry, and 84% of the victims of forced marriages.
- As per the Global Slavery Index 2016, India had the world’s largest number of modern slaves, at 18.3 million, with 1.4% of the population living in slavery-like conditions.
- Also, 151.6 million children aged 5 to 17 were engaged in child labour in 2016. Nearly 50% (72.5 million) were involved in hazardous work.
- While 70.9% of child labour was concentrated in agriculture, 11.9% worked in industry.
- The highest number (72.1 million) was in Africa, followed by Asia and the Pacific (62 million).
- Modern slavery was most prevalent in Africa (7.6 per 1,000 people), followed by Asia and the Pacific (6.1 per 1,000) and then Europe and Central Asia (3.9 per 1,000).
- Forced labour was most prevalent in Asia and the Pacific (4 per 1,000 people), followed by Europe and Central Asia (3.6 per 1,000), and then Africa (2,8 per 1,000).
- The latest figures are expected to aid in policy-making aimed at achieving Target 8.7 of the Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs), which calls for effective measures to end forced labour, modern slavery, human trafficking, and child labour in all its forms.
- The world won’t be in a position to achieve the SDGs unless we dramatically increase our efforts to fight these scourges.
- The new global estimates can help shape and develop interventions to prevent both forced labour and child labour.
- According to the ILO-WFF report, the term ‘modern slavery’ covers “a set of specific legal concepts including forced labour, debt bondage, forced marriage, other slavery and slavery-like practices, and human trafficking.” Though not defined in law, “essentially, it refers to situations of exploitation that a person cannot refuse or leave because of threats, violence, coercion, deception, and/or abuse of power.”
3) 50 countries signed a treaty to ban which weapons on 20th Sept 2017?
- Published on 22 Sep 17
Fifty countries on 20th Sept 2017 signed a treaty to ban nuclear weapons, a pact that the world’s nuclear powers spurned but supporters hailed as a historic agreement nonetheless.
Before the day was out, 50 states as different as Indonesia and Ireland had put their names to the treaty; others can sign later if they like.
Guyana, Thailand and the Vatican also have already ratified the treaty, which needs 50 ratifications to take effect among the nations that back it.
They would be barred from developing, testing, producing, manufacturing, otherwise acquiring, possessing or stockpiling nuclear weapons “under any circumstances.”
Seven decades after the United States dropped two atomic bombs on Japan during World War II the only use of nuclear weapons there are believed to be about 15,000 of them in the world today.
Amid rising tensions over North Korea’s nuclear and missile tests, U.N. Secretary - General Antonio Guterres said that the threat of a nuclear attack is at its highest level since the end of the Cold War.
Supporters of the pact say it’s time to push harder toward eliminating atomic weapons than nations have done through the nearly 50-year-old Nuclear Non-Proliferation Treaty.
Terms of the Treaty
- Under its terms, non-nuclear nations agreed not to pursue nukes in exchange for a commitment by the five original nuclear powers the U.S., Russia, Britain, France and China to move toward nuclear disarmament and to guarantee other states’ access to peaceful nuclear technology for producing energy.
- More than 120 countries approved the new nuclear weapons ban treaty in July over opposition from nuclear - armed countries and their allies, who boycotted negotiations.
- The U.S., Britain and France said the prohibition wouldn’t work and would end up disarming their nations while emboldening “bad actors,”.
- Brazil was the first country to sign onto the ban, followed by nations from Algeria to Venezuela.
4) For whom was a radio jingle released by MSME ministry on 20th Sept 2017?
- Published on 21 Sep 17
a. National SC ST Hub
b. Marginalised communities
c. Minority communities
d. Both a and c
e. None of the above
ANSWER: National SC ST Hub
The Vice President, Shri Venkaiah Naidu was the Chief Guest of National SC ST Hub (NSSH) Confluence organized by Ministry of Micro, Small and Medium Enterprises (MSME) and also released first ever radio jingle for National SC ST Hub.
A collective, coordinated action is needed to strengthen the eco-system for promoting SC & ST Entrepreneurs in the country.
Capacity building is important; credit availability is important, technology up-gradation is also important, he added.
Micro, Small and Medium Enterprise Sector (MSME) is the bulwark of the Indian economy and one of the largest employers after agriculture. He further said that it is also one of the major contributors to the country’s GDP.
With Make in India envisaging to push contribution of the manufacturing sector to 25 per cent of the GDP by 2022, the MSME sector will be required to play a critical role in achieving the goal, he added.
Skill up gradation is one area that requires top attention for the overall development of SC/ST entrepreneurs.
National SC/ST Hub was lauded for signing MoUs with Sector Skill Councils to skill over 2,000 entrepreneurs, as these associations and incubators have a huge role to play in supporting the objectives of National SC/ST Hub.
Each association must extend support in building capacities and mentoring entrepreneurs in its respective sector.
National SC ST Confluence: Know More
- The confluence brought various insights from Industry Association and Incubators to understand the gaps in realizing the mandate of Public Procurement Policy.
- It put forth innovative strategies for holistic development of MSEs owned by SC/ST Entrepreneurs.
The discussion held was extremely fruitful and intend to go a long way in meeting the objectives of the National SC ST Hub.
- Interactive session was held with over 150 industry associations and incubators with representation of over 400 participants, focussing on collaboration with NSSH, to augment the capabilities of existing SC/ST entrepreneurs.
- Several excellent suggestions were made with respect to market access; capacity building, tender challenges, technology upgradation, etc. were made.
- The session also focused on future action plan along with role to be played by each stakeholder to achieve the objectives of the hub.
- In addition, MOUs were signed with 3 Sector Skill Councils to provide skill development trainings of SC-ST Entrepreneurs under capacity building initiatives of NSSH.
Milestones in the Hub
- The Government of India formulated the Public Procurement Policy, 2012 which states that 20% of total procurement of goods and services by Central Ministries, Departments and CPSEs shall be made from MSEs and 20% of such procurement (4% of total) shall be from SC & ST owned MSEs.
- NSSH is a unique initiative launched by Prime Minister Shri Narendra Modi on 18th October 2016. This initiative is aimed empowering SC ST owned MSEs in order to achieve the 4% mandate of the Public Procurement Policy.
- In view of the above, the NSSH initiative has the potential to work on ground and have an impact till the last mile. Due to the social and economic bearing the programme can have, it requires a strategy that delivers sustained and measurable impact, on the entire MSME ecosystem.
- Therefore, there have been continual efforts to include all relevant stakeholders including state, industry associations, incubators, CPSEs to identify synergies and work collaboratively and cohesively towards a shared goal.
Some of the milestones achieved by the hub are as follows -1.
Data analysis completed for 5 lakh SC/ST units to identify suppliers to CPSEs2.
Physical verification of over 4,900 SC/ST entrepreneurs completed that had potential to supply to CPSEs3.
Telephonic interaction with over 2,590 SC/ST MSMEs completed to understand challenges in securing PSUs’ tenders4.
Information of 1,003 SC/ST enterprises mapped with 42 CPSEs for vendor empanelment and procurement5.
Appointment of nodal officers in 67 CPSEs. Discussion with over 60 CPSEs conducted6.
Special Marketing Assistance Scheme - 950 units participated in domestic and international fairs/exhibition7.
2,107 units facilitated with CPSE linkages under Special Vendor Development Programme8.
512 SC/ST units benefitted under Special Performance & Credit Rating Scheme9.
Training programme conducted in IIM Noida (Satellite institute of IIM Lucknow), IIM Lucknow, IIM Raipur, IIM Kolkata and XLRI Jamshedpur (on pilot basis) for SC/ST entrepreneurs for over 100 SC/ST entrepreneurs.
5) SSB has been declared lead intelligence agency for which borders?
- Published on 19 Sep 17
d. Both a and b
e. All the above
ANSWER: Both a and b
Union Home Minister Shri Rajnath Singh operationalised the New Intelligence Set-up of the Sashastra Seema Bal (SSB) at a function on 18th Sept 2017.
This marked the culmination of a long pending aspiration of the Force following approval of the Union Home Minister.
SSB has been declared as the Lead Intelligence Agency (LIA) for both the Indo-Nepal and Indo-Bhutan borders.
Thus, it was felt that a well knit intelligence network of the highest capabilities that can function and deliver would be the prime requirement of comprehensive Border Management.
This was quite essential as the operations of SSB have to be Intelligence based so as to prevent criminals and smugglers from taking advantage of the friendly borders with Nepal and Bhutan.
MHA has accordingly sanctioned 650 posts in various ranks from Battalion to Frontier Headquarters.
The job of SSB is much more demanding and challenging since it is vested the responsibility of guarding open borders unlike other borders.
This makes the task much more challenging and demands highest alertness to check illegal activities like smuggling of arms, Fake Indian Currency Notes (FICN), drugs and human-trafficking.
Smt. Archana Ramasundaram is the first woman to head any CAPF.
WARB: Know More
- On the occasion, the Union Home Minister launched the Welfare and Rehabilitation Board (WARB) Mobile App for CAPF personnel.
- The App is available on Google Play store and is user friendly.
- It contains various useful features to facilitate retired CAPFs and Assam Rifles personnel to get their genuine grievances redressed, seek skill development training through National Skill Development Corporation under “Pradhan Mantri Kaushal Vikas Yojana, re-employment and other relevant and important information.
- This mobile App shall also help retired personnel to have better co-ordination with WARB and its field formation at states/UTs and district level.
- Later Shri Rajnath Singh released the book “Pride of India”, a compilation on SSB martyrs and awardees. He also distributed scholarships to children of SSB martyrs.
- SSB Wives’ Welfare Association “SANDIKSHA” is providing financial help to children of martyrs who are still studying in school, colleges and universities to continue their studies.
- The Force has undertaken Modernization programme and the SSB has acquired two UAVs while the MHA has approved three Bomb Detection and Disposal squads for the SSB, she added.
6) Astra is a BVRAAM missile. What does BVRAAM stand for?
- Published on 18 Sep 17
a. Beyond Visual Acuity Air to Air Missile
b. Beyond Visual Range Air to Air Missile
c. Behind Visual Range Air to Air Missile
d. Beside Visual Range Air to Air Missile
ANSWER: Beyond Visual Range Air to Air Missile
The indigenously developed Beyond Visual Range Air-to-Air Missile (BVRAAM) — Astra — underwent a series of successful trials+ for four days over the Bay of Bengal, marking completion of its development phase.
The final development flight trials of Astra BVRAAM were successfully conducted over the Bay of Bengal, off the coast of Chandipur in Odisha during September 11-14.
A total of seven trials were conducted against pilotless target aircraft successfully.
The successful trial of the Beyond Visual Range Air to Air Missile (BVRAAM) paves way for its induction into the Indian Air Force (IAF).
The missile system has been developed by the Defence Research and Development Organisation (DRDO) in cooperation with the IAF.
A number of Defence Public Sector Undertakings (DPSUs) and more than 50 public and private industries have contributed in developing the weapon system.
Final rounds of trials were successfully conducted by Sukhoi-30 MKI by IAF over the Bay of Bengal. Seven missiles were fired altogether against Pilotless Target Aircraft (PTA) during the last four days.
Defence sources said the missile was fired at a very long range and different altitudes.
It successfully engaged high manoeuvriKarnam Malleshwari.
7) Which indigenous artillery gun has set a new world record in range?
- Published on 18 Sep 17
An indigenous artillery gun, Advanced Towed Artillery Gun System (ATAGS), being jointly developed by the Defence Research and Development Organisation (DRDO) and the private sector has set a new world record in range by hitting targets at a distance of 48 km.
During trial firings at Pokhran ranges last week, ATAGS registered the longest ever distance of 48.074 kms, surpassing the maximum ranges of 35-40 kms fired by any artillery gun system in this category.
ATAGS is a 155mm, 52 calibre towed artillery gun being developed in mission mode by DRDO as a part of the Army’s artillery modernisation programme.
The record was achieved with special ammunition, “high explosive – base bleed” (HE – BB) by the ATAGS variant developed by Kalyani Group.
The development is being done through a consortium based model, similar to that adopted for the Pinaka multi-barrel rocket launch system.
It was designed by DRDO’s Armament Research and Development Establishment (ARDE) in Pune. In addition, Bharat Forge Limited of Kalyani Group, Tata Power Strategic Engineering Division and Mahindra Defence Naval System from the private sector are involved in a big way along with the Ordnance Factory Board (OFB).
For instance, the barrel and breech mechanism, on both variants of ATAGS, was developed at Kalyani Group.
ATAGS Gun: Know More
- The gun has several significant features including an all-electric drive, high mobility, quick deployability, auxiliary power mode, advanced communication system, automated command and control system.
- It has a six round magazine instead of a standard three round magazine.
- Also, the gun weighs slightly more than normal due to the larger chamber.
- The Army has not inducted any new artillery gun since the Bofors in the 1980's.
- After decades of failed attempts, the service is gearing up to induct the Dhanush artillery gun which is an indigenously upgraded variant of the Bofors gun.
- In addition, last November India signed a contract for 145 M-777 Ultra-Light Howitzers from the US.
8) Operation Insaaniyat is a programme that offers humanitarian assistance to which refugees?
- Published on 15 Sep 17
a. Rohingya Muslims
b. Shia Muslims
c. Sunni Muslims
d. Bori Muslims
ANSWER: Rohingya Muslims
A humanitarian crisis arose in Bangladesh due to heavy influx of refugees from neighbouring Myanmar.
The government of India has decided to assist Bangladesh in this crisis by sending relief material.
The Indian Air Force was tasked to airlift the relief material from India to Bangladesh.
One C-17 Globemaster strategic heavy lift cargo aircraft was positioned at short notice at Delhi on 13 Sep 17 to airlift 55 Tons of relief material to Chittagong, Bangladesh.
This aircraft was loaded overnight with relief material consisting of critical daily necessities.
The C-17 carrying relief material departed early morning on 14 Sep 17 and routed via Kolkata to pick up additional load.
The material was delivered at Chittagong, Bangladesh at 1245 hours on 14 Sep 17.
One more C-17 is scheduled to airlift additional relief material to Bangladesh.
The Indian Air Force rose to the challenge and played a pivotal role to further strengthen the close ties of friendship between India and Bangladesh.
9) Which of the following MoUs was signed between India and Belarus in Sept 2017?
- Published on 13 Sep 17
a. MoU for cooperation in agricultural research and education
b. Agreement on scientific cooperation between INSA and National Academy of Sciences of Belarus
c. Agreement on anti terrorist and anti trafficking measures
d. Only a and b
e. All the above
ANSWER: Only a and b
List of MoUs/Agreements signed during State visit of President of Belarus to India
|S.No.||Name of the MOU/Agreement/Treaty|
|1||Memorandum of Understanding between the Ministry of Youth Affairs and Sports of the Republic of India and the Ministry of Education of the Republic of Belarus|
|2||Memorandum of Understanding between the Ministry of Skill Development and Entrepreneurship of the Government of the Republic of India and the Ministry of Education of the Government of the Republic of Belarus for Cooperation in the Field of Vocational Education and Training|
|3||Agreement on Scientific and Technical Cooperation between Indian National Science Academy (INSA) and the National Academy of Sciences of Belarus|
|4||MoU between Indian Council of Agricultural Research, New Delhi, India and Belarusian State Agricultural Academy, Gorki, Belarus for Cooperation in Agricultural Research and Education|
|5||Protocol amending the Agreement between the Ministry of Agriculture & Farmer’s Welfare of the Republic of India and the Ministry of Agriculture and Food of the Republic of Belarus signed on April 16, 2007|
|6||Programme of cooperation between the Government of Republic of India and the Government of Republic of Belarus in the field of culture for 2018-2020|
|7||MoU between M/o Petroleum & Natural Gas of the Republic of India and Belarusian State Concern of Oil and Chemistry in the Oil and Gas Sector|
|8||Memorandum of Understanding between JSV "Belzarubezhstroy” and National Buildings Construction Corporation Ltd.|
|9||Memorandum of Understanding between JSC Belarusian Potash Company (BPC) and Indian Potash Ltd (IPL)|
|10||Agreement on the implementation of MoU signed between OJSC Minsk Tractor Works and Kirloskar Oil Engines Ltd. India in Pune|
10) Where is India's first state of the art homeopathic virology lab located?
- Published on 13 Sep 17
The Union Minister of State for AYUSH (Independent Charge) Shri Shripad Yesso Naik inaugurated India’s first State of art virology laboratory at Dr. Anjali Chatterjee Regional Research Institute for Homoeopathy in Kolkata today.
This laboratory has been established to develop new drugs and technologies in Homoeopathy to combat emerging challenges of viral diseases.
The laboratory, established at a cost of INR 8 crore is the only one in India for conducting basic and fundamental research in Homoeopathy for viral diseases like influenza, Japanese encephalitis, dengue, chickunguniya and swine flu.
New drugs and technologies would also be developed here to combat emerging challenges of viral diseases.
National Institute of Homeopathy (NIH), Kolkata is imparting higher education and training in homeopathy under the Ministry of AYUSH.
Additionally, there is a Centre of Excellence in Fundamental Research in Homoeopathy at IIEST, Howrah to undertake fundamental research studies in homoeopathy with an interdisciplinary approach.
This institute has undertaken several clinical research studies like autism, psoriasis, vitiligo, breast cancer, hypertension, migraine etc along with proving of new drugs in homoeopathy with their clinical validations.
About 400 patients are being treated daily through OPD services and AYUSH outreach services being provided in villages too.