Current Affairs Questions & Answers - Apr 09, 2017

1)   Who is the current king of Thailand?

a. King Bhumibol Adulyadej
b. King Rama X
c. King Maha Vajiralongkorn
d. Both b and c
Answer  Explanation 

ANSWER: Both b and c

Thailand’s King Maha Vajiralongkorn on 6 April 2017 signed a military-backed Constitution of the country into a law.

The signing is an essential step toward an election that would bring the country back to democratic rule.

The document was signed by the King in a ceremony at Bangkok.

The outgoing military government will have the right to appoint a senate that will have a say in appointing the prime minister.

It allows the King Maha Vajiralongkorn to travel abroad without appointing a regent. T

An original draft of the constitution, viewed as the basis for returning to democracy, was approved in a referendum in August 2016.

But the King has asked in January that changes be made to give him more power on appointing a regent in the event he isn’t in the country.

The interim government has pledged to hold the election by the end of 2017.

But the vote is likely to be put off to 2018 due to a delay caused by the revision work. The military-led interim government has ruled the country since it seized power in a 2014 coup.

The Junta that seized the power after the 2014 Coup has promised to restore democracy in the nation. The 2014 coup was its 12th successful coup in some 80 years.

The new constitution is the 20th constitution of the South-east Asian country since the end of absolute monarchy in 1932.

Current PM took charge of the country after the 2014 Coup.

Besides, 6 April was a public holiday in Thailand as the day marks the establishment of the Chakri dynasty 235 years ago.

The current king is also known as King Rama X in the dynasty.

2)   Which of the following is not among the 4 supporting legislations of the Goods and Services Tax?

c. Compensation
d. None of the above
Answer  Explanation  Related Ques

ANSWER: None of the above

Rajya Sabha on 6 April 2017 passed all four supporting legislations of the Goods and Services Tax Bill, GST rollout 2017.

The four bills were passed by the Rajya Sabha by a voice vote as all parties were on board.

The four legislations are:

i. The Central Goods and Services Tax Bill, 2017 (The CGST Bill).
ii. The Integrated Goods and Services Tax Bill, 2017. (The IGST Bill).
iii. The Union Territory Goods and Services Tax Bill, 2017 (The UTGST Bill).
iv. The Goods and Services Tax (Compensation to the States) Bill, 2017 (The Compensation Bill).

The passage in the upper house of the Parliament has cleared the decks for the rollout of the historic GST Bill from 1 July 2017 and usher the one-nation-one-tax regime.

With this passage in Rajya Sabha, the Bill will be sent to President Pranab Mukherjee for the final nod. The bills will become the law after the President gives his assent to them.

The Bill was earlier passed by the Lok Sabha on 29 March 2017.

Now, the States can pass the State GST Bill in their assemblies.

Parliament passed all the four bills related to GST rollout unanimously.

The agricultural produce will not be taxed under the new indirect tax regime. All those items which are exempted as of now will continue to be so.

3)   Which private sector bank launched UPI on its Chillr app?

b. Dena Bank
d. Yes Bank
Answer  Explanation  Related Ques


HDFC Bank launched the Unified Payment Interface (UPI) on peer-to-peer payments app Chillr. Consequently, the HDFC bank UPI will now be available on Chillr too, besides its own mobile banking app.

Chillr has been running on IMPS with 11 banks prior to this launch and claims a monthly transaction value of $77.2 Mn (INR 500Cr).

With this launch, this base will expand as 33 more banks will be able to use it besides the existing 11 banks.

As a result, Chillr is now targeting a monthly transaction value of $1 Bn.

The startup expects to see 10 Mn active transacting users by the end of the year.

Currently, the app claims to have around 3 Mn+ total user base, 50% of whom are from outside the top 10 cities.

As of date, about $463.2 Mn (INR 3,000 Cr) has been transacted with HDFC bank on the app.

The startup raised a Series A round of funding with $7 Mn from Blume Ventures, Unicorn Ventures, Sequoia Capital and others in December 2015.

4)   Which country's agreement with India marks the full transition of KKNPP power project?

a. Russia
b. US
c. UK
d. Germany
Answer  Explanation  Related Ques

ANSWER: Russia

India has signed a joint statement with Russia takeover full operational control of Unit 1 of the Kudankulam Nuclear Power Plant (KKNPP).

It formally marks the full transition.

The agreement was signed between representatives of Nuclear Power Corporation of India Ltd (NPCIL) and the ASE Group of Companies, a subsidiary of ROSATOM State Atomic Energy Corporation of Russia.

With the deal, the Russian and Indian sides have confirmed fulfilment of all warranty terms and obligations of the contractor (ASE Group of Companies) for the construction of Unit 1.

The warranty period run showed reliable and safe operation of Unit 1.

NPCIL has confirmed that ASE Group of Companies, which is a general contractor, has fulfilled all its tasks in full and accurately.

The commercial operation and the warranty period of Unit 1 of KKNPP had started in December 2014.

The warranty was typically for one year, which ended in December 2015.

However, the final takeover agreement was delayed to ensure the reliability of the plant and equipment as Unit I was the first of a series of six reactors.

Earlier, in March 2017, both countries had signed joint protocol on provisional acceptance of Unit 2 of the plant, which marked the start of its commercial operation.

KKNPP: Know More

  • Kudankulam Nuclear Power Plant is the single largest nuclear power station in India.
  • It is situated in Kudankulam in the Tirunelveli district of Tamil Nadu.
  • It is scheduled to have six VVER-1000 reactors with an installed capacity of 6,000 MW of electricity.
  • It has been built in collaboration with Atomstroyexport, the Russian state company and NPCIL. Unit 1 of the plant was synchronised with the southern power grid in October 2013.
  • It is generating electricity to its warranted limit of 1000 MW.
  • Unit 2 with capacity 1,000 MW had achieved first criticality in July 2016.
  • It was grid-connected in August 2016 and its commercial operation started in October 2016.
  • The ground-breaking ceremony for construction of units 3 & 4 was performed in February 2016.
  • The power generated from the plant will provide electricity to Tamil Nadu, Puducherry, Kerala and Karnataka.

5)   Which program has DST launched to provide self driven cars, autonomous UAV and airplane navigation systems?

a. CPS
b. CTS
c. Cyber Physical Systems
d. Both a and c are the same
e. None of the above
Answer  Explanation 

ANSWER: Both a and c are the same

Department of Science and Technology (DST) has launched Cyber Physical Systems (CPS) programme dealing with self-driven cars, autonomous unmanned vehicles and aircraft navigation systems.

The programme is still at a nascent stage.

INR. 3,000-crore has been has been conceived for it and it will first take root in some of the Indian Institutes of Technology (IITs).

What is Cyber Physical Systems (CPS)?

  • CPS is an interdisciplinary field that deals with the deployment of computer-based systems that do things in the physical world.
  • It uses computer-based algorithms, tightly integrated with the internet and its users.
  • It involves trans disciplinary approaches, merging theory of cybernetics, design and process science and mechatronics.
  • In CPS, physical and software components are deeply intertwined, each operating on different spatial and temporal scales.
  • Both exhibit multiple and distinct behavioural modalities, and interact with each other in a myriad of ways that change with context.
  • Autonomous unmanned vehicles (UAVs) and aircraft navigation systems and smart grids (where electricity is optimally distributed on the basis of calculations in real time by micro-processors) also qualify as CPS.
  • CPS has offered robotics, artificial intelligence, digital manufacturing, big data analysis, quantum communication and IoTs.
  • The National Science Foundation of the United States already has identified CPS as a key area of inter-disciplinary research back in 2003.

6)   Who has received the NTR National award for 2012?

a. SP Balasubramanyam
b. Hema Malini
c. Both of the above
d. Neither of the above
Answer  Explanation 

ANSWER: SP Balasubramanyam

NTR National Awards for the years 2012 and 2013 at the Film Development Corporation office in Hyderabad were awarded to popular playback singer, actor and music director S.P. Balasubramanyam has got the NTR National Award for 2012, while Hema Malini will receive the same for 2013.

The Award is an annual Government award to recognise people for their lifetime achievements and contributions to the Cinema of India.

Together with the NTR National Award, the committee also announced the winners of the Ragupathi Venkaiah, B N Reddy and Nagireddy-Chakrapani awards.

NTR: Know More

  • Nandamuri Taraka Rama Rao (28 May 1923 – 18 January 1996), popularly known as NTR, was an Indian actor, filmmaker, director, editor and politician.
  • He served as Chief Minister of Andhra Pradesh for seven years over three terms
  • NTR has received three National Film Awards for co-producing Thodu Dongalu (1954) and Seetharama Kalyanam (1960) under National Art Theater, Madras, and directing Varakatnam (1970). NTR has received the erstwhile Rashtrapati Awards for his performance(s) in the films Raju Peda (1954), and Lava Kusa (1963)
  • He garnered the Nandi Award for Best Actor for Kodalu Diddina Kapuram in 1970, and the Inaugural Filmfare Award for Best Actor - Telugu in 1972 for Badi Panthulu.

7)   Which sports body has been granted affiliation by IOA in March 2017?

a. BFI
c. NBF
Answer  Explanation  Related Ques


The Indian Olympic Association (IOA) has granted affiliation to the Boxing Federation of India (BFI), ending a long-standing impasse between the two bodies.

As per the directives of the International Olympic Committee vide their letter dated February 7, the IOA grants affiliation to the BFI subject to ratification by the Executive Council/General Body of the IOA.

The affiliation ends a logjam that goes back to September last year when BFI took charge of the sport after elections conducted in the presence of International Boxing Association (AIBA) and sports ministry observers.

The IOA had initially refused to grant recognition to BFI stating that it still considered the now-defunct Indian Amateur Boxing Federation (IABF) as the official national body for the sport.

It had eventually referred the matter to its affiliation committee after persistent requests from the BFI.

With this, the BFI now becomes the fully recognised body for Indian boxing, having already been granted affiliation by AIBA and the sports ministry.

8)   Where has NBA set up its first basketball school in India?

a. Chennai
b. Kolkata
c. Delhi
d. None of the above
Answer  Explanation  Related Ques

ANSWER: None of the above

The National Basketball Association announced the setting up of its first basketball school, a network of tuition-based basketball development programmes, in Mumbai.

The school, as part of a multi-year agreement announced today with India On Track (IOT), is open to male and female players between ages 6-18.

The new initiative adds an additional layer to the NBA’s existing basketball development efforts, including the Jr. NBA, Basketball without Borders (BWB) and NBA Academies.

Additional schools will be launched by NBA in India and around the world in the coming months, it added.

The school’s curriculum has been developed by the NBA’s Elite Basketball Development team in consultation with current and former NBA coaches, former NBA players, and player development experts.

NBA: Know More

  • Number of teams: 30
  • Sport: Basketball
  • Commissioner: Adam Silver
  • Headquarters: New York City, New York, United States
  • Most titles: Boston Celtics (17 titles)
  • Key Subsidiaries: WNBA, Eastern Conference, Western Conference

9)   Who has been appointed the OIRA regulatory czar by Donald Trump?

a. Neomi Rao
b. Vishal Amin
c. Nikki Haley
d. None of the above
Answer  Explanation 

ANSWER: Neomi Rao

US President Donald Trump has nominated prominent Indian-American law expert Neomi Rao as Administrator of the Office of Information and Regulatory Affairs (OIRA) (regulatory czar).

She will oversee the US President’s plan to eliminate 75% of federal regulations. OIRA is a statutory part of the Office of Management and Budget within the Executive Office of the President.

It reviews regulations from federal agencies and has the power to reject rules that do not fall in line with the President’s goals.

Currently She is a professor at the Antonin Scalia Law School at George Mason University.

Earlier, she had served as Associate Counsel to President George W Bush; counsel for nominations and constitutional law to the US Senate Committee on the Judiciary.

US President Donald Trump has also nominated Indian-American Vishal Amin as Intellectual Property Enforcement Coordinator in the Executive Office of the President (IP czar).

He will coordinate US law-enforcement strategy around copyright, patents and trademarks. His appointment needs confirmation of US Senate and will succeed Daniel Marti.

Presently, Amin is a Senior Counsel on House Judiciary Committee.

He also had served in the administration of President George W Bush as Associate Director for Domestic Policy and at the US Department of Commerce, as Special Assistant and Associate Director for Policy in the Office of the Secretary.

10)   Which state's sex ratio touched 950 girls for 1000 boys for the first time in March 2017?

a. Punjab
b. Karnataka
c. Haryana
d. HP
Answer  Explanation 

ANSWER: Haryana

Haryana's sex ratio at birth stood at 950 girls to 1,000 boys for the first time in the history of the state in March this year.

As per district-wise data, the sex ratio at birth during March in Kaithal, Rohtak, Jhajjar, Gurugram, Bhiwani, Jind, Fatehabad, Panchkula, Rewari, Ambala, Mewat, Sonepat and Faridabad was 864, 863, 893, 893, 893, 896, 898, 912, 913, 921, 926, 939 and 947 respectively.

The ratio in Karnal, Hisar, Yamunanagar, Sirsa, Kurukshetra, Panipat, Palwal and Narnaul was 953, 972, 974, 976, 980, 993, 1,217 and 1,279 respectively.

Khattar said that the state had, after the launch of Beti Bachao, Beti Padhao programme by Prime Minister Narendra Modi from Haryana, accepted the challenge of improving the skewed sex ratio.

It launched a massive campaign in the state by implementing Pre-Conception and Pre-Natal Diagnostic Techniques (PCPNDT) Act, 1994 and Medical Termination of Pregnancy (MTP) Act, 1971.

It was also running sensitisation-cum awareness campaigns promoting girl child.

More than 430 FIRs have been lodged in the state under the PC-PNDT Act and the MTP Act against the offenders during last about two years since the launch of this campaign, who were involved in sex selection and female foeticide.

Out of these, more than 80 FIRs were registered after inter-state raids in the neighbouring states of Uttar Pradesh, Rajasthan, Delhi and Punjab.

The sex ratio at birth in the state crossed the 900 mark in 2016 for the first time, for which the Prime Minister had lauded the Haryana government for its achievement.

More than 50 cases of Sex Selection Drugs (SSDs) being sold by unscrupulous elements promising male child were also detected and FIRs were registered against such offenders under the PNDT Act and Indian Penal Code (IPC).

Rampant misuse of MTP kits for illegal abortion purposes by unauthorised paramedics in the state was also detected and culprits were booked under MTP Act, Drugs Act and IPC.

Earlier, the sex ratio in Haryana was a dismal 879 females per 1,000 males.

Haryana had ranked the worst among all states in sex ratio in the country.

Haryana: Know More

  • Area: 44,212 km²
  • Capital: Chandigarh
  • Population: 27.76 million (2016)
  • Chief minister: Manohar Lal Khattar

11)   Which type of high power batteries for e-vehicles and automobiles have been indigenously developed by ISRO?

a. Carbon
b. Lithium ion
c. Nickel Cadmium
d. Lead Acid
Answer  Explanation  Related Ques

ANSWER: Lithium ion

The government has asked Indian Space Research Organisation (ISRO) to allow manufacturers interested in producing indigenous lithium-ion batteries.

This is including those from private sector, to obtain the technology for its mass production.

ISRO will now come up with a framework to make this process smooth.

The Vikram Sarabhai Space Centre under ISRO has developed indigenous technology to manufacture such high-power batteries for automobiles and e-vehicles and their feasibility tests in vehicles have been successful.

Over half a dozen major automobile companies, battery manufacturers and public sector undertakings have already approached ISRO.

This include Mahindra Renault, Hyundai, Nissan, Tata Motors, High Energy Batteries, BHEL and Indian Oil.

The aim is to develop indigenous technology for lithium-ion batteries so that their prices are within the reach of Indian customers.

ISRO had earlier developed similar batteries for satellite and the launch vehicle applications.

The government has set an ambitious target for pushing more use of electric vehicles to reduce air pollution, which has become one of the biggest health concerns.

Batteries are the key component of any electric vehicle.

At present, all lithium-ion batteries are imported and it's very expensive.

Such batteries have high-power, but these weigh less and their volume is much less as well in comparison to conventional batteries.

Government documents show the cost of lithium-ion batteries is high because of small volume of procurement.

Bulk procurement and mass production can reduce the cost by 80%, which is key to push demand.

Lithium Ion Batteries: Know More

  • Specific energy: 100–265 W·h/kg (0.36–0.875 MJ/kg)
  • Energy density: 250–676 W·h/L (0.90–2.43 MJ/L)
  • Specific power: ~250-~340 W/kg
  • Charge/discharge efficiency: 80–90%
  • Self-discharge rate per month: 8% at 21 °C/15% at 40 °C/31% at 60 °C
  • Cycle durability:400–1200 cycles
  • Nominal cell voltage: NMC 3.6 / 3.85 V, LiFePO4 3.2 V
  • A lithium-ion battery or Li-ion battery (abbreviated as LIB) is a type of rechargeable battery.

12)   What unique property does the zigzag edge of a graphene layer have?

a. It allows flow of charge without resistance at room temperature
b. It allows flow of charge without resistance at more than room temperature
c. It allows flow of charge without resistance at less than room temperature
d. Both a and b
e. All of the above
Answer  Explanation 

ANSWER: Both a and b

Researchers from the Indian Institute of Science (IISc), Bengaluru have been able to experimentally produce a new type of electrical conductor that was theoretically predicted nearly 20 years ago.

The team produced graphene that is single- or a few-layers thick to conduct current along one particular edge — the zigzag edge.

The zigzag edge of graphene layer has a unique property: It allows flow of charge without any resistance at room temperature and above.

This is the first time one has found the perfect edge structure in graphene and demonstrated electrical conductance along the edge.

A few-layers-thick graphene that conducts current along one edge does not experience any resistance and so can lead to realising power-efficient electronics and quantum information transfer, even at room temperature.

Many groups over the world have been trying to access these edges since the emergence of graphene in 2004, but have been largely unsuccessful because when current flows through graphene, it flows through both the edge as well as the bulk.

By creating the bulk part of graphene extremely narrow (less than 10 nanometre thick), and hence highly resistive, thus forcing the current to flow through the edge alone, IISc scientists have overcome this block.

While the bulk is totally insulating, the edge alone has the ability to conduct because of the unique quantum mechanics of the edge.

As the zigzag orientation of carbon atoms [resulting from the hexagonal lattice], the electron wave on each carbon atom overlaps and forms a continuous train of wave along the edge.

This makes the edge conducting, even if it is very long but has to be chemically and structurally pristine.

In the past, others researchers had tried making narrow graphene through chemical methods.

But the use of chemicals destroys the edges. So the IISc team resorted to mechanical exfoliation to make graphene that are single- and few-layers thick.

There are currently several chemical methods to produce very narrow graphene nanoribbons. But these chemicals tend to destroy the edges.

So the challenge is to produce graphene nanoribbons using chemicals that do not destroy the edges.

This innovation makes high-quality graphene nano-ribbons or nano-strips with clean edges possible.

13)   Who has been appointed the CMD of Larsen and Toubro on April 7, 2017?

a. SN Subrahmanyan
b. Anil Singhvi
c. Anil Manibhai Naik
d. None of the above
Answer  Explanation  Related Ques

ANSWER: Anil Manibhai Naik

BoD of Larsen & Toubro on April 7, 2017 elevated SN Subrahmanyan as CEO and MD from the post of Deputy MD and President of the company.

Anil Manibhai Naik was appointed the non-executive chairman w.e.f Oct 1, 2017 for 3 years.

Subrahmanyan will take charge as CEO on July 1, 2017.

Naik, or AMN as he is popularly called, had given himself five-year extension in 2012 to restructure the complex businesses, focus on core business, exit non-core businesses and find his successor.

His current term as group executive chairman ends on September 30, 2017.

Naik was asked by BOD to provide advice, guidance and mentorship to the company’s executive management in the capacity of non-executive chairman, according to a company statement.

Naik has acceded to the Board’s request after working with L&T for over 52 years.

L&T: Know More

  • Headquarters: Mumbai
  • Key Subsidiaries: Larsen & Toubro Infotech, L & T Mutual Fund
  • Founders: Søren Kristian Toubro, Henning Holck-Larsen

14)   Who has become the youngest ever UN Messenger of Peace?

a. Ayaan Hirsi Ali
b. Malala Yousafzai
c. Manasi Pradhan
d. Dolores Huerta
Answer  Explanation 

ANSWER: Malala Yousafzai

Nobel Peace Prize winner Malala Yousafzai is set to become the United Nations’ youngest-ever “Messenger of Peace.

Ms. Yousafzai (19) was honoured by Secretary-General Antonio Guterres during a ceremony at the UN headquarters in New York on April 10.

She will help promote girl’s education around the world as part of her new role.

As the youngest-ever UN Messenger of Peace, Malala can do even more to help create a more just and peaceful world.

Born on July 12, 1997 in Pakistan’s Swat Valley, Ms. Yousafzai became an international symbol for the fight for girls’ education after being shot on October 9, 2012 for opposing Taliban restrictions on female education.

She survived the attack and became an advocate for the millions of girls denied a formal education worldwide.

In 2013, Yousafzai with her father Ziauddin Yousafzai, co-founded Malala Fund.

The fund aims to bring awareness to the social and economic impact of girls’ education and to empower girls to demand change.

Yousafzai became the youngest-ever Nobel Peace Prize laureate in 2014.

Malala Yousafzai: Know More

  • Born: 12 July 1997 Mingora, Pakistan
  • Key Awards: Nobel Peace Prize, Sakharov Prize
  • Education: Khushal Public School (2012), Edgbaston High School
  • Parents: Ziauddin Yousafzai, Tor Pekai Yousafzai