General - General awareness questions on current affairs

1)   Which organization for surveying India celebrated its 250th anniversary on 22nd June 2017?
- Published on 23 Jun 17

a. Survey of India
b. BSI
c. ZSI
d. NSSO
Answer  Explanation 

ANSWER: Survey of India

Explanation:
Survey of India has has met the challenges of surveying the indomitable Himalaya, blazing deserts and animal infested jungles.

The Department is continuously striving to keep abreast of modern technology and has successfully entered the era of Digital Mapping and Geographic Information Systems.A set of two commemorative postage stamps and a miniature sheet on “Survey of India” were released on 22nd June 2017 on the occasion of its 250th anniversary.

Survey of India, fondly called ‘the Department’ by its members is built on solid foundations, strong traditions and deep roots, keeps striving to keep India among the best surveyed countries in the world, adopting the latest technologies to meet new challenges and always living up to its motto: A Setu Himachalam i.e. 'From Setu to the Himalaya' (covering entire India).

Department of Posts issues Commemorative postage stamps on Institutions that have a national or International stature or have made national/international contribution.

The origin of Survey of India can be traced back to Year 1767, when Major James Rennell was appointed as the Surveyor General of Bengal. It is the oldest scientific department in India and one of the oldest survey establishments in the world.

Survey of India also has the distinct honour of printing the first Postage Stamp of India and the first copy of the Constitution of India.

Survey of India officers have to pioneer untrodden lands for others to follow and build upon.

The Survey of India acts as advisor to the Government of India on all survey matters, viz geodesy, photogrammetry, mapping and map reproduction.

Survey of India: Know More

  • Headquarters: Dehradun
  • Founder: East India Company
  • Founded: 1767
  • Key Subsidiaries: Geological Survey of India


2)   Which hotel has acquired the image trademark, making it the first building in India to get this?
- Published on 22 Jun 17

a. Hyatt
b. Radisson
c. Taj Palace
d. Taj Land's End
Answer  Explanation 

ANSWER: Taj Palace

Explanation:
The iconic Taj Palace hotel in the city has acquired an ‘image trademark’, making it the first building in the country to get intellectual property rights protection for its architectural design.

It will ensure that commercial use of the image of its dome and grand exterior can be made only with the consent of Taj Hotels Palaces Resorts Safaris.

For more than a century the Taj dome has anchored the Mumbai skyline we are very proud to recognise its important role as a symbol of Mumbai’s people and its past through the trademark.

The dome of The Taj Mahal Palace, which stands on the waterfront in south Mumbai, has long been been `triangulation point’ for the Indian Navy which guides its vessels to the harbour.

The distinctive red-tiled Florentine Gothic dome, which crowns the elegant Indo-Saracenic arches and architraves of the hotel, sits 240 feet above the street level.

The architects modelled it on the dome of the Victoria Terminus (now Chhatrapati Shivaji Terminus).

The hotel opened on December 16, 1903.

The hotel has hosted many eminent personalities, including Neil Armstrong, John Lennon and Barack Obama


3)   Which government body just signed a protocol of cooperation as a first step of which the Moncoes do Reino correspondence was handed over to India?
- Published on 21 Jun 17

a. NHAI
b. National Archives of India
c. IMO
d. None of the above
Answer  Explanation 

ANSWER: National Archives of India

Explanation:
A Protocol of Cooperation was signed between the National Archives of India and the Minister of Culture of the Portuguese Republic in the field of archives on 17th May, 2017 in Lisbon, Portugal.

As a first step under this agreement, the Torre do Tombo (National Archives of Portugal) handed over to the National Archives of India digital copies of 62 volumes of the collection known as ‘Moncoes do Reino’ (Monsoon correspondence).

These volumes were originally part of over 456 volumes that cover the period from 1568 to 1914 and form the largest of all record collections in the Goa State Archives.

The collection consists of direct correspondence from Lisbon to Goa and is important primary source for the study of the Portuguese expansion in Asia, their trade rivalries with the Arabs and European powers and their relations with neighbouring Kings in South Asia and East Asia.

In 1777, these 62 volumes, consisting of over 12,000 documents, pertaining to the period from 1605 to 1651 were shifted from Goa to Lisbon where these were subsequently printed in under the title ‘Documentos Remetidos da India’(Documents sent from India) by the Academy of Science at Lisbon between 1880 and 1893.

The original volumes had remained in Lisbon ever since.

A set of digital images of the missing volumes of the Moncoes do Reino was handed over to India.

Ever since the very successful visit of the Portuguese Prime Minister to India in January this year, there is a lot of synergy between the two countries in diverse fields ranging from technology to education and from civil aviation to football - to name a few.

Cultural being an important part of the lives of our people, is an important area where cooperation in the areas of shared heritage and legacy is greatly cherished by one and all.


4)   Who many people are refugees, asylum seekers and internally displaced at latest UNHCRA count?
- Published on 21 Jun 17

a. 66.6 million
b. 64.6 million
c. 65.6 million
d. 67.6 million
Answer  Explanation 

ANSWER: 65.6 million

Explanation:
UNHCRA record 65.6 million people are either refugees, asylum seekers or internally displaced across the globe, announced the Office of the United Nations High Commissioner for Refugees (UNHCR).

The revelation was made on 19 June 2017 in the UN Refugee Agency, UNHCR annual Global Trends study.

By the end of 2016, 65.6 million individuals were forcibly displaced worldwide as a result of persecution, conflict, violence, or human rights violations.

During the year, 10.3 million people were newly displaced by conflict or persecution.

This included 6.9 million individuals displaced within the borders of their own countries and 3.4 million new refugees and new asylum-seekers.

The number of new displacements was equivalent to 20 people being forced to flee their homes every minute of 2016.

Children below 18 years of age constituted about half of the refugee population in 2016.

Developing regions hosted 84 per cent of the world’s refugees under UNHCR’s mandate, with about 14.5 million people.

During 2016, 552200 refugees returned to their countries of origin, often in less than ideal conditions.

Refugees in the World

  • Lebanon continued to host the largest number of refugees relative to its national population, where 1 in 6 people was a refugee.
  • Altogether, 55 per cent of all refugees worldwide came from just three countries: Syrian Arab Republic (5.5 million), Afghanistan (2.5 million) and South Sudan (1.4 million).
  • For the third consecutive year, Turkey hosted the largest number of refugees worldwide, with 2.9 million people.
  • Unaccompanied or separated children, mainly Afghans, and Syrians, lodged around 75000 asylum applications in 70 countries during the year, although this figure is assumed to be an underestimate.


5)   Which country has provided India with the facility of online visa w.e.f July 2017?
- Published on 21 Jun 17

a. Australia
b. Africa
c. South America
d. US
Answer  Explanation 

ANSWER: Australia

Explanation:
The Australian High Commission and Australian Department of Immigration and Border Protection announced on 16 June 2017 that from 1 July 2017, all Indian nationals will be able to apply for visitor online visa.

The application option would make applying for the country’s visitor visa easier for Indians and thus enhance their overall experience.

According to an official statement by the Australian government, there has been a significant increase in demand for Australian visas in India with the rising popularity of Australia as a holiday destination. The Australian Department of Immigration and Border Protection granted more than 65000 visitor online visa to Indian nationals in the first four months of 2017 alone.

Indians would be able to make the online applications through the department’s ImmiAccount portal.

The benefits of online lodgement include 24/7 accessibility, electronic payment of the visa application charge and the ability to check the status of applications lodged online.

The other benefit is that the form could be completed by a third party such as a family member in India or in Australia, a travel agent or a contracted visa application centre with due permission from the applicant.

The processing time for the visas would also be faster considering both applications and supporting documentation would be made immediately available to the processing office.

The move would also enable the applicant to check the status of the application online and know immediately when it is finalised.

This expansion by the Australian government in providing the option of online lodgement to Indian applicants is a significant move towards the easier management of a large number of visitor visa applications processed in India.

There were 265,000 Indian visitor arrivals from July-Mar 2017, an increase of 15.4 percent in comparison to July-March 2016.


6)   Which is the world's largest festival of lights, music and ideas?
- Published on 19 Jun 17

a. Vivid London
b. Vivid Vienna
c. Vivid Sydney
d. Vivid Adelaide
Answer  Explanation 

ANSWER: Vivid Sydney

Explanation:
The World’s largest festival of light, music and ideas, Vivid Sydney has entered into Guinness World Book of Records.

The Guinness World Record have given the Vivid Sydney installation Dreamscape the title for the ‘Largest interactive lighting display’.

The annual outdoor lighting festival installation Dreamscape has been made up of 124,128 lights and links the entire Circular Quay precinct beginning from the Sydney Opera House to the Sydney Harbour Bridge into one cohesive canvas of light.

Moreover, 3D interactive modelling present in the control room in Circular Quay allows the participants to change the color, texture and pattern of the lighting across the cityscape.

With this record, the Vivid Sydney has trumped its own 2016 predecessor, Dress circle that Circular Quay.

This year the Vivid Sydney had added an additional one km of lights to achieve the record. With this record, the annual outdoor lighting festival has trumped its own 2016 predecessor, Dress Circle which also illuminated the Circular Quay.

This year the annual outdoor lighting festival had added an additional one km of lights to achieve this record.

Vivid Sydney: Know More

  • Vivid Sydney is an annual outdoor lighting festival held in Sydney city of Australia.
  • The festival includes immersive light installations and projections as well as performances from local and international musicians.
  • The festival takes place over a period of three weeks in the winter months of May and June.
  • The highlight of the festival are the light sculptures and multimedia interactive works that will transform various buildings and landmarks around the Sydney Central Business District such as Opera House, Harbour Bridge into a cohesive canvas of light.


7)   The UN IFAD has released a study entitled _____ that studies remittances and migration.
- Published on 16 Jun 17

a. One Family One Time
b. One Family At a Time
c. Each Family One Time
d. Each Family At a Time
Answer  Explanation 

ANSWER: One Family At a Time

Explanation:
According to the ‘One Family at a Time’ study conducted by the UN International Fund for Agricultural Development (IFAD), Indians working across the world had sent home USD 62.7 billion in 2016 making India the top remittance-receiving country surpassing China.

Around 200 million migrants across the world have sent more than USD 445 million in 2016 as remittances to their families. Top Remittance Receiving Countries: India (USD 62.7 billion), China (USD 61 billion), the Philippines (USD 30 billion) and Pakistan (USD 20 billion).

Around 80% of the remittances across the world are received by 23 countries such as India, China, the Philippines, Mexico and Pakistan.

US, Saudi Arabia and Russia: these countries account for almost half of annual flow of remittances.

The study is the first ever study conducted that analysed a 10-year trend in migration and remittance flows over the period 2007-2016.

In the period between 2007 and 2016, India has surpassed China to become the world’s largest receiver of remittances.

In 2007, India was at the second spot behind China.

Asia remains the main remittance-receiving region with 55% of the global flows. The amount of money sent to the families in developing countries have increased by 51% over the past decade.

This increase in remittances is expected to lift millions out of poverty and in attaining the Sustainable Development Goals (SDG).

The report expects that in the year 2017, one of out of every seven people will be involved in either sending or receiving more than USD 450 billion in remittances.

The amount of money sent back home by the migrants’ averages less than 1% of their host’s GDP. In total, these individual remittances account for more than the total foreign direct investment to almost every low-and-middle-income country.

The report has also made recommendations for improving public policies to reduce costs and create opportunities for migrants and their families to use their money more productively

IFAD International Fund for Agricultural Development: Know More

  • IFAD was set up in 1977 as the 13th specialised agency of the United Nations.
  • India is a founder member of IFAD and a key contributor among the member countries.
  • IFAD works towards removing poverty and hunger in rural areas all over the world, especially in developing countries.
  • Its goal is to empower poor rural men and women in developing countries to achieve higher incomes and improved food security.
  • IFAD is managed by the two main governing bodies i.e. the Governing Council and the Executive Board.
  • The Governing Council is the highest decision-making body of IFAD.


8)   India is set to be co-partner country at which food diplomacy event?
- Published on 14 Jun 17

a. ANUG
b. ANUGA
c. ANUGI
d. ANUGE
Answer  Explanation 

ANSWER: ANUGA

Explanation:
Minister of Food Processing Industries said that it was an honour for India to be a co-partner country in such a prestigious international event. “

Food Processing Sector has lots of challenges to deal with but due to the transformation happening in this sector in the last 3 years, the industry is ready to overcome the obstacles.

India’s Government has started nine Mega Food Parks; strengthening cold chain infrastructure; implementing Kisan-SAMPADA scheme with allocation of Rs 6000 crore; creation of corpus of Rs. 2000 Crore with NABARD for priority lending to the food processing industries; rationalising taxes; allowing 100% FDI in retail market for Food sector, etc.

These steps will help the Government in achieving its vision of making India a Global Food Factory rather than being a market place only.

Brand India will be standing parallel with Brand ANUGA in Cologne, Germany, highlighting the importance of International Food Exhibitions like SIAL in France and ANUGA in Germany.

Food diplomacy will bridge many differences and would transform the lives of farmers through farming techniques and need investment not only in Food Processing but also in Farming technologies.

ANUGA 2015 had 135 Indian exhibitors, more than 200 Indian companies are expected to participate in ANUGA 2017 from October 7th to October 11th 2017 at Cologne.

For ANUGA 2017 e- commerce in food industry will be focussed for the first time. Ms Hamma said India’s food industry is known for its efficiency and culinary competence.

World is attracted to Indian cuisines and its diversity.

India is a home to a diverse variety of spices, a large number of which are exported across the globe. Traditional Organic produce of North East India is held in high esteem.

ANUGA Background: Know More

  • ANUGA - an acronym for Allgemeine Nahrungs Und Genußmittel Ausstellung ( General Food and Non essential Provisions Exhibition) is the world’s biggest and most important trade fair for Food and beverage trade. It takes place biennially (every 2 years). ANUGA 2017 is the 34th edition.
  • ANUGA offers an extensive supporting programme with Lectures, Special exhibition and attractive industry events
  • ANUGA is the leading export platform with 7,189 exhibitors from 109 countries with over 85% of Exhibitors from abroad.
  • 1,60,000 decision makers from the retail and out-of-home market from 192 countries visited during last ANUGA. 66% of the industry visitors are foreigners


9)   CRY report on child labour found which state leads in number of child labourers?
- Published on 14 Jun 17

a. UP
b. MP
c. AP
d. HP
Answer  Explanation 

ANSWER: UP

Explanation:
According to a recently released CRY Report on child labour, more than 8 lakh children between the age group of 5 and 6 years in India are engaged in child labour.

Child Rights and You (CRY) is an NGO working towards the upliftment of underprivileged children. The organization got established in 1979 by Rippan Kapur.

As per the report, over 5 lakh children in India do not attend school. A majority of them are involved in family based employments.

Uttar Pradesh ranks first in the number of child labourers (2,50,672 children) in the country followed by Bihar (1,28,087 children) and Maharashtra (82,847 children).

The report has identified that the high level of poverty and unemployment along with a lack of adequate social security net are the important factors forcing children to work, compromising with their learning.

These children are often forced to migrate with their parents and assist in family occupations such as working in brick kilns.

The report cites that the Integrated Child Development Scheme (ICDS) suffers many limitations and is now covering only 50% of the child labourers. In the decade 2001-11, the working children in the age group of 10-14 years saw a reduction of 30% but the child labourers in the age group of 5-9 years have seen an increase of 37% from 2001.

ICDS Integrated Child Development Services: Know More

  • (ICDS) Scheme is a centrally sponsored scheme implemented by the states/UTs. The Scheme was launched on 2nd October 1975.
  • The scheme has the following objectives: to improve the nutritional and health status of children in the age-group 0-6 years; to reduce mortality, morbidity, malnutrition and school dropout; to promote policy coordination and implementation for promoting child development; to lay an adequate foundation for the psychological, physical and social well-being of the children etc.
  • Under the scheme, the services such as Supplementary nutrition; Pre-school non-formal education; nutrition and health education, immunization, health check-ups; and Referral services through Anganwadi Centres for children below 6 years of age as well as to pregnant women & lactating mothers are offered.


10)   Which city is home to the first underwater transport tunnel of India?
- Published on 14 Jun 17

a. Kolkata
b. Kochi
c. Kalimpong
d. None of the above
Answer  Explanation 

ANSWER: Kolkata

Explanation:
Kolkata will soon have an underwater Metro which will pass through tunnels several feet under the Hooghly.

The first underwater transportation tunnel of India is ready with the second one nearing completion.

The Kolkata underwater Metro transportation tunnel is unique to India because never before in the history of the country has a tunnel been made under a flowing river.

The tunnel has been constructed 30 metres below riverbed, just a few metres away from the famous Howrah Bridge, built in the last century to connect Howrah and Kolkata.

There aren’t even roads that are under a river in India making the Kolkata Metro tunnel a complete technology marvel which will see trains will chugging through it every two and a half minutes.

It will be connecting two main terminals: Howrah and Sealdah – each of which has a footfall of about 10-12 lakh passengers per day.

These type of tunnel-boring machines, which we call ‘earth pressure balancing tunnel boring machines’, have been used for the first time in Eastern India.

Another interesting point is that more than 10 lakh tonne of mud has been dug out for the construction of this tunnel.

The tunnel-boring machines were used for the first time in eastern India. The entire 16.6-kilometre stretch of the first tunnel is ready.

The second tunnel is yet to be completed.

Of the entire length, 10.8 kms is underground and around one kilometre is underwater.

For tunnelling below the river, the water tightness, waterproofing, and the design of gaskets were the major challenges, because the tunnel is being constructed for a service of 120 years, so we cannot afford any water leakage during service.

Tunnelling cannot be done for long hence the homework was done for almost a year and then the machines and equipment shifted to the location for final implementation and execution of the plan.

The material used gives it immunity to survive quakes in seismic zone 3, in which Kolkata falls.

The use of the standard gauge makes it a unique one. It is the latest technology that has been utilised to ensure that the tracks have sharp curves, keeping in mind that this tunnel passes under a lot of heritage buildings.


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