Current Affairs Questions & Answers - Jan 18, 2017

1)   Our universe contains 10 times more galaxies than previously thought, equalling how much?

a. 2 trillion
b. 3 trillion
c. 4 trillion
d. None of the above
Answer  Explanation  Related Ques

ANSWER: 2 trillion

The universe contains around 2 trillion galaxies, ten times more than previously thought according to a new study.

Astronomers have sought to study how much the number of galaxies are in the observable universe equals.

Scientists have used images from Hubble Space Telescope to estimate that the universe contains 100-200 billion galaxies.

Presently, technology permits just 10 percent of these galaxies to be studied and remaining 90 percent will be seen once bigger and better telescopes are developed.

Pencil beam images of deep space from telescopes around the world, and especially from the Hubble telescope, were converted into 3D maps.

This permits the density of the galaxies as well as volume of one small region of space following another to be studied.

Like an intergalactic archaeological dig, the research has enabled the team to establish how many galaxies have been missed.

Results of the study are based on the measurement of number of observed galaxies at different epochs through the universe history.

The scientists have examined how many galaxies there were at a given epoch they found that were significantly more at earlier times.

When the universe was a few billion years old, there were 10 times as many galaxies in a given volume of space as there were within a similar volume in present times.

Most galaxies are low mass systems with masses similar to those of the satellite galaxies surrounding the Milky Way.

Over 13.7 billion years of cosmic evolution since the Big Bang saw galaxies that have been growing through star formation and merger with other galaxies.

This suggests significant evolution must have occurred to reduce their number through extensive merging of systems.

2)   Who was the last astronaut to walk on the moon?

a. Gene Cernan
b. John Glenn
c. Neil Armstrong
d. None of the above
Answer  Explanation 

ANSWER: Gene Cernan

Astronaut Gene Cernan was the last person to walk on the moon. The Apollo 17 commander died at the age of 82 on 16th Jan 2017. He was facing ongoing health issues.

On Dec 14, 1972 Cernan became the last of only a dozen men to walk on the moon.

Cernan died less than six weeks after another American space hero, John Glenn, the first American to orbit the Earth in 1962.

Cernan guided the lander, named Challenger, into a lunar valley called Taurus-Littrow, with Harrison "Jack" Schmitt at his side on Dec. 11, 1972.

Completing their third moon walk on Dec. 14, Schmitt returned to the lunar module and was followed by Cernan.

Eugene A. Cernan was born in 1934 in Chicago and graduated from Indiana's Purdue University in 1956 with a degree in electrical engineering.

He had been a Navy attack pilot and earned a master's degree in aeronautical engineering.

NASA selected him in October 1963 as one of 14 members of its third astronaut class.

Cernan was one of only three people to voyage twice to the moon - either to its surface or in moon orbit.

James Lovell and John Young are the others.

In 1973, Cernan became special assistant to the program manager of the Apollo program at Johnson Space Center in Houston.

He retired from NASA three years later.

He worked for a Houston energy firm, Coral Petroleum, then in 1981 began his own aerospace consulting company.

He eventually became chairman of an engineering firm that worked on NASA projects.

He also worked as a network television analyst during shuttle flights in the 1980s.

A documentary about his life, "The Last Man on the Moon", was released in 2016.

In all, Cernan logged 566 hours and 15 minutes in space, more than 73 hours of them on the moon's surface.

3)   British PM Theresa May on 17th Jan 2017 acknowledged for the first time that ____________

a. UK Parliament would be able to vote on Brexit deal between EU and UK
b. UK Parliament would not be able to vote on Brexit deal between EU and UK
c. British apex court will deliberate on Brexit deal between EU and UK
d. None of the above
Answer  Explanation 

ANSWER: UK Parliament would be able to vote on Brexit deal between EU and UK

British Prime Minister Theresa May said the UK will make a clean break from the European Union. It will leave its single market of some 500 million people.

Ms. May said on 17th Jan 2017 said that Britain must regain control of its laws and borders.

She called on the bloc to negotiate a free-trade agreement that will benefit both sides.

UK will seek the greatest possible access to it through a new, comprehensive, bold and ambitious Free Trade Agreement.

Ms. May also announced Britain’s Parliament will be able to vote on the final divorce deal reached between the U.K. and European Union.

She did not address what would happen should there be a vote against the agreement.

The British pound rallied as Ms. May focused on keeping Britain open to global trade.

Ms. May rejected both the “hard Brexit” label and “soft Brexit” but wants a new relationship in the interests of both Britain and the EU.

Britain is quitting the EU’s single market in goods and services in order to gain control over immigration.

Losing single-market access alarms many in Britain’s huge financial services sector.

Ms. May said she would invoke Article 50 of the EU’s key treat by March 31. This will formally begin a two-year process of negotiating Britain’s departure.

4)   Yes Bank has started which business accelerator program in partnership with startup incubator T-hub and Anthill, a speed scaling platform?

a. Yes FinTech
b. Yes FinCash
c. Yes FinDraw
d. None of the above
Answer  Explanation  Related Ques

ANSWER: Yes FinTech

Yes Bank in Jan 17, 2017 launched 'Yes Fintech', a business accelerator program. The program was launched in collaboration with T-Hub a startup incubator set up by the Telangana government.

Anthill - a speed scaling platform for early growth stage start-ups also participated.

Yes Bank has been collaborating with and supporting over 100 fintech start-ups in the country to provide innovative financial solutions to its corporate, SME and retail customer base.

This is part of its Alliances, Relationships & Technology (ART) approach to digitised banking

The accelerator will help the bank co-create disruptive innovations in:

  • Financial inclusion,
  • MSME focused solutions,
  • Payments,
  • Lending,
  • Compliance,
  • Risk management,
  • Trade finance,
  • Capital markets and
  • Forex and treasury space
Financial technology startups are leading the digital revolution.

Yes Fintech Accelerator takes this philosophy forward and provides start-ups a platform for creating sustainable and market ready products.

5)   Which two airports will be privatised according to AAI?

a. Jaipur, Delhi
b. Jaipur, Mumbai
c. Jaipur, Kolkata
d. None of the above
Answer  Explanation  Related Ques

ANSWER: None of the above

The Airports Authority of India (AAI) has decided to privatise terminal operations at its Jaipur and Ahmedabad airports.

It has invited bids from global firms with a promise to give the winning bidder a free hand in replacing existing airport staff.

AAI officials said that about 230 workers were employed at the Jaipur airport in total, while Ahmedabad airport employed about 330 staff.

The AAI Chairman said only a limited number of direct employees worked in the terminal side of the airports.

He said private operators who bid for the lowest management cost and the highest rise in airport revenue will bag the terminal management contract for a period of 15 years

According to the bid document, the developer will manage passenger terminal building, including fire control room, kerbside approach road and passenger boarding bridges.

The developer will further supervise ground handling services, car parking and all terminal approach roads along with assets, equipment and machinery at the two airports.

The AAI will continue looking after operations and maintenance of airside facilities at these two airports including runway, taxiway, cargo complex and other city side facilities.

AAI: Know More

  • Industry: Aviation sector
  • Founded: 1 April 1995
  • Headquarters: Rajiv Gandhi Bhawan, Safdarjung Airport, New Delhi-110003
  • Key Executives and Officials: Dr.Guruprasd Mohapatra , Chairman, M. Sathiyavathy, DGCA
  • Members: S.Suresh, Member(Finance), Anuj Aggarwal, Member(HR), A K Dutta, Member(ANS)

6)   Passport Index, a global ranking has said which is  the world's most powerful passport?

a. French
b. German
c. Chinese
d. None of the above
Answer  Explanation 

ANSWER: German

Indian passports have ranked a low 78 in international ranking of the world's most powerful passports.

Germany topped the ranking with a visa-free score of 157 while Singapore overtook South Korea to become the top ranked Asian passport with visa free score of 156.

India is at 78th position with visa-free score of 46. China and Pakistan ranked 58th and 94th on the list respectively.

The least powerful passport with a visa-free score of 23 was Afghanistan.

The ranking was by Arton Capital's Passport Index. It is based on cross border access of national passports.

This is an interactive tool which collects, displays and ranks the passports globally. It assigns a "visa-free score" according to the number of countries a passport holder can visit visa-free or with visa on arrival.

The newly added 'World Openness Score' (WOS) tracks the progression of freedom of mobility across the globe.

The WOS in 2016 was 17,925. In the first month of 2017, the score has already increased to 17,948.

Citizenship by investment has become a $2 billion industry, with over 20,000 investors seeking a second residency or citizenship around the globe every year.

7)   Who has won the 2016 TS Eliot Prize for his book “Jackself”?

a. Jacob Polley
b. Alice Oswald
c. Vahni Capildeo
d. None of the above
Answer  Explanation 

ANSWER: Jacob Polley

Jacob Polley has won the 2016 TS Eliot prize with Jackself. This is a collection described by the judges as “a firework of a book”.

The loosely autobiographical poems use the “Jack” of nursery rhymes. It then harnesses a local legend to tell the story of a childhood in rural Cumbria.

Polley emerged as winner of the UK’s richest poetry prize at a ceremony on 16th Jan 2017 evening at the Wallace Collection gallery in London.

The book was chosen from a 10-strong shortlist including the winner of the 2015 Forward prize, Vahni Capildeo, and previous TS Eliot prize winner Alice Oswald.

It is third time lucky for the Carlisle born-poet, who was first shortlisted for his debut collection The Brink in 2003. Then again, he was shortlisted with The Havocs in 2012.

Born in 1975, Polley was among 20 to be named the Next Generation of best British poets by the Poetry Book Society in 2004 on the strength of his first collection.

He has also written a novel, Talk of the Town, which won the 2010 Somerset Maugham award, and collaborated with director Ian Fenton on a short film, Keeping House.

He teaches at Newcastle University.

Polley is the 23rd winner of the prize, which carries a purse of £20,000.

It was founded by TS Eliot’s widow Valerie in 1993 and is now run by the TS Eliot Foundation.

8)   Analysis of Oxfam has found 8 richest men in the world have collective worth of ________.

a. Half the population of the planet
b. USD 426 billion
c. Both of the above
d. Neither of the above
Answer  Explanation 

ANSWER: USD 426 billion

Research by the human rights watchdog found that the eight richest men on the planet have a collective worth of US$426 billion.

This includes six American businessmen, including Facebook co-founder Mark Zuckerberg, Amazon creator Jeff Bezos and Microsoft founder Bill Gates, who remains the world’s richest man.

By contrast, the combined fortunes of 3.6 billion of the world’s poorest inhabitants adds up to a just US$409 billion.

The figures showed the gap between rich and poor is far greater than had been feared. It has also pointed to a growing discontent with mainstream politics around the world.

The report was released on the eve of the 47th Annual Meeting of the World Economic Forum in Switzerland. The report by Oxfam was titled “An economy for the 99 per cent”.

Inequality will be among the issues topping the agenda as 3000 members of the world’s business and political elite meet in Davos

The theme of this year’s summit is “Responsive and responsible leadership.”

In its report Oxfam called for an increase in tax rates targeting rich individuals and cooperations. It also highlighted the need for a global agreement to end competition between countries to lower corporate tax rates.

The report found that between 1988 and 2011, the incomes of the poorest 10 per cent increased by just US$65, while the incomes of the richest one per cent grew by US$11,800 - 182 times as much.

Oxfam said the world’s richest one per cent had as much wealth as the rest of the world combined.


These eight billionaires have a combined wealth of 3.6 billion of the poorest people on the planet, according to Oxfam:

1. BILL GATESUS founder of Microsoft Corp - net worth US $75 billion
2. AMANCIO ORTEGAFounder of Spain’s Inditex, Zara fashion chain - net worth US$67 billion
3. WARREN BUFFETTUS CEO, largest shareholder in Berkshire Hathaway - net worth US$60.8 billion
4. CARLOS SLIM HELUOwner of Mexico’s Grupo Carso - net worth US$50 billion
5. JEFF BEZOSUS founder, chairman, CEO of Amazon - net worth: US$45.2 billion
6. MARK ZUCKERBERGUS chairman, CEO, co-founder of Facebook - net worth US$44.6 billion
7. LARRY ELLISONUS co-founder, CEO of Oracle - net worth US$43.6 billion
8. MICHAEL BLOOMBERGUS founder, owner, CEO of Bloomberg LP - net worth: US$40 billion

9)   Union Ministry of Petroleum & Natural Gas launched which awareness program for sustainability?

a. Saksham 2017
b. Sanrakshan Kshamta Mahotsav
c. Both of the above
d. Neither of the above
Answer  Explanation  Related Ques

ANSWER: Both of the above

The Union Ministry of Petroleum & Natural Gas has launched Saksham 2017 (Sanrakshan Kshamta Mahotsav).

This an awareness program for sustainable use of petroleum products.

It is month long awareness programme. It aims to create awareness amongst masses towards judicious utilization and conservation of petroleum products.

It also stresses on the use of energy efficient appliances and switching to cleaner fuels.

The programme is initiative of Petroleum Conservation Research Association (PCRA) and other Oil & Gas PSUs under the aegis of the Union Ministry of Petroleum & Natural Gas.

During one-month long awareness drive, workshops on adopting simple fuel saving measures will be organised for drivers of commercial vehicles and housewives, cooks.

It will also host activities like Quiz Show, Walkathons, Saksham Asian Cycling Championship, concerts.

It will also carry out other activities across the country to educate on various steps for fuel conservation.

10)   Scientists have developed the world's lightest high performance mechanical watch called ________

a. RM 50-03
b. RM 50-04
c. RM 50-05
d. None of the above
Answer  Explanation  Related Ques

ANSWER: RM 50-03

Developing the world’s lightest high-performance mechanical watch RM 50-03, scientists used ‘wonder material’ graphene.

The RM 50-03 watch weighs just 40 gms.

The superlight watch was made using a unique grapheme composite known as Graph TPT.

It is incorporating graphene to manufacture a strong but lightweight new case to house the delicate watch mechanism.

It was jointly developed by the University of Manchester (UK), Richard Mille and McLaren F1.

Graph TPT weighs less than previous similar materials used in watchmaking.

Graphene is the world’s first 2D material at just one-atom thick.

It was first isolated in 2004 and has the potential to revolutionise applications including high-performance composites for the aerospace and automotive industries.

It is also used for flexible, bendable tablets, mobile phones and next-generation energy storage.

11)   Who was Om Puri's co star in National Award winning Arohan?

a. Gita Sen
b. Moon Moon Sen
c. Mrinal Sen
d. None of the above
Answer  Explanation 

ANSWER: Gita Sen

Gita Sen, Om Puri's co-star from Benegal's National Award winning "Arohan", had breathed her last on 16th Jan 2017 leaving behind her husband Mrinal Sen.

The 86-year-old veteran actor was keeping very unwell in recent times.

Incidentally, it was Benegal himself who had cast her in "Arohan".

The film narrates the story of a poor farmer who suffers under a cunning and cruel landlord, amidst rising Naxalism in the 60s.

A month back, she had suffered cerebral hemorrhage, which robbed her power of speech and made her bed ridden.

She had acted in a number of films in character roles including 'Chorus', 'Calcutta 71', 'Kharij', 'Akaler Sandhane', 'Ekdin Pratidin' and 'Khandahar'.