Current Affairs Questions & Answers - Jan 23, 2017

1)   Which two parties have forged an alliance for the upcoming UP assembly elections?

b. INC, SP
d. None of the above
Answer  Explanation 


Congress party finally announced on 23rd Jan 2017 that it has forged an alliance with the Samajwadi Party (SP).

It will contest from 105 seats in the upcoming Uttar Pradesh Assembly elections .

SP chief Akhilesh Yadav earlier said he wouldn't offer the Congress a chance to contest from more than 100 seats.

The Congress wanted to contest as many as 121 seats.

Akhilesh said his final offer was 99-100 seats for the Congress.

It was when Congress supremo Sonia Gandhi stepped in that the alliance fructified.

The Samajwadi Party and the Congress will fight the 2017 Uttar Pradesh Assembly elections together.

This is a move that both parties hope will help them consolidate the Muslim vote, a significant 19 per cent of the electorate.

Two parties agreed on a seat sharing formula under which the Congress will contest 105 seats while the SP will battle it out in 298 seats under Chief Minister Akhilesh Yadav.

The Congress emerged a winner from the deal as it got thrice the number of seats than its 2012 tally of just 28.

The SP had won 224 seats.

Samajwadi Party: Know More

  • Abbreviation: SP
  • President: Akhilesh Yadav
  • Lok Sabha leader: Mulayam Singh Yadav
  • Rajya Sabha leader: Ram Gopal Yadav
  • Founder: Mulayam Singh Yadav
  • Founded: 10 April 1992
  • Headquarters: 18 Copernicus Lane, New Delhi, India
  • Newspaper: Samajwadi Bulletin

2)   India has won 4 consecutive ODI series against England how many times up till Dec 2016?

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

ANSWER: None of the above

India have won four Tests in a row for the first time vs England.

They have won four Tests in a series for the second time - the first occasion was against Australia in 2012-13 when they won by 4-0.

India has established a record for contesting most Tests (18) in a row between August 2015 and December 2016 without a defeat.

Their earlier highest tally of most successive Tests without defeat was 17 between September 1985 and March 1987.

3)   Who has become a major sponsor and official eCommerce and cloud services partner for Olympic till 2028?

a. Alibaba
b. Larsen and Toubro
c. Baidu
d. Xiaomi
Answer  Explanation  Related Ques

ANSWER: Alibaba

Chinese e-commerce company Alibaba has become a major sponsor of the Olympic Games.

It has signed a deal with the International Olympic Committee that runs until 2028.

This is after joining The Olympic Partner (TOP) worldwide sponsorship programme.

At the Davos WEF, the International Olympic Committee (IOC) and Alibaba Group announced the formation of a long-term partnership that will last through 2028.

As part of the new collaboration, Alibaba has become the official “Cloud Services” and “E-Commerce Platform Services” partner of the Olympics, as well as a Founding Partner of the Olympic Channel.

The company will support the global development of digital opportunities including the Olympic Channel.

Other major sponsors of the games are Coca-Cola, McDonald’s, and Visa.

This strategic partnership underlines the global appeal of the Olympic values and opens an exciting new chapter in this digital age.

Jack Ma: Know More

  • Born: 10 September 1964
  • Location: Hangzhou, Zhejiang, China
  • Alma mater: Hangzhou Normal University, Cheung Kong Graduate School of Business (CKGSB)
  • Occupation: Founder and Executive Chairman of Alibaba Group
  • Net worth Increase: US$22 billion

4)   Who will launch an eSports league UCypher in India?

a. Sharad Pawar
b. Amitabh Bacchan
c. Ronnie Screwvala
d. None of the above
Answer  Explanation 

ANSWER: Ronnie Screwvala

Ronnie Screwvala, a producer and entrepreneur, philanthropist and founder of UTV Group, is set to launch an electronic sports (eSports) league in India.

Called UCypher, the first tournament of its kind will have10 teams taking part in PC, console and mobile games’ league.

His company, USports, has earmarked INR 80-100 crore to spend on the league.

The full format of the league is expected to go live as soon as March and will be broadcast in May on linear television.

About eSports

  • eSports will be a PC, console and mobile games league.
  • The first season of the league will have six teams.
  • It will be a pilot season lasting anywhere between 45 and 60 days.
  • 10 teams will be going forward for the same duration.
  • USports is already in talks with two youth channels to air the linear television format of the league.
  • Target audience for mobile and PC is mostly in the age group of 9-12 year olds. For console it is 16-25 years.
  • eSports is relatively new to the Indian market.
  • It has a massive share in markets like US, China, Korea, Japan and many European countries. According to reports, the world’s eSports industry is expected to grow from US$493 million in 2016 to US$1.1 billion in 2019.

5)   Who has been appointed member of the FIFA Finance Committee?

a. Praful Patel
b. Sepp Blatter
c. Both a and b
d. Neither of the above
Answer  Explanation  Related Ques

ANSWER: Praful Patel

All India Football Federation (AIFF) president Praful Patel was on 21st Jan 2017 appointed member of FIFA finance committee.

He was appointed for a four-year term.

The FIFA finance committee monitors the financial management. It also advises the FIFA executive committee on financial matters and asset management.

It analyses the FIFA budgets and the financial statements prepared by the FIFA general secretary.

It then submits them to the FIFA executive committee for approval.

6)   Scientists have developed a robotic instrument to help the heart beat called _______.

a. Heart Sleeve
b. Heart Beat
c. Heart Step
d. Heart Cure
Answer  Explanation 

ANSWER: Heart Sleeve

Harvard researchers along with scientists from Boston Children's Hospital have developed a customizable robotic heart sleeve that helps hearts to beat.

This opens up new treatment for heart failure patients.

Soft robotic sleeve twists and compresses in sync with a heart beat. This augments cardiovascular functions weakened by heart failure.

Current available devices that help heart beat directly come in contact with blood.

The soft robotic sleeve does not directly contact blood, lowering the risk of clotting.

It also eliminates the need for blood thinner medication. The latter can be dangerous.

Device can help patients transplant or aid in cardiac rehab and recovery.

This showcases the potential of soft robotics to meet clinical needs.

The inventor of the heart sleeve is Ellen T. Roche and her team.

The research, was a collaboration between Harvard, the Wyss Institute, and Boston Children’s Hospital.

It shows how soft robotics can safely interact with soft tissue and lead to improvements in cardiac function.

The thin silicone sleeve uses soft pneumatic actuators placed around the heart.

It mimics the outer muscle layers of the mammalian heart.

The actuators twist and compress the sleeve in a motion akin to the beating heart.

The device is tethered to an external pump. This uses air to power the soft actuators.

The sleeve can be customized for each patient, as his/her condition evolves.

The sleeve is attached to the heart using a combination of a suction device, sutures, and a gel interface.

This helps with friction between the device and the heart.

Heart Failure: Know More

  • Heart failure affects 41 million people worldwide.
  • Today, some of the treatment options are mechanical pumps called ventricular assist devices (VADs).
  • These pump blood from the ventricles into the aorta, and heart transplants.
  • While VADs are continuously improving, patients are still at high risk for blood clots and stroke.

7)   Which country has deployed a Star Wars style missile killer system, Arrow 3?

a. Israel
b. Palestine
c. Jordan
d. Pakistan
Answer  Explanation  Related Ques

ANSWER: Israel

Israel’s upgraded ballistic missile shield Arrow 3 became operational w.e.f 22nd Jan 2017.

The “Star Wars”-like extension of its capabilities to outer space ensures incoming missiles can be safely destroyed.

Defence Ministry of Israel has stated the US funded Arrow 3 System has been jointly developed by State operated Israel Aerospace Industries and US Firm Boeing Co.

It was handed over to the Israeli Air Force on 18th Jan 2017. The delivery and advanced operational capability of the highly advanced defence system was announced on this date too.

Arrow-3 is under the US-Israel Arrow Weapon System.

The Iron Dome, developed by Rafael Advanced Defense Systems, defends Israel from short-range rocket and other aerial assaults up to 43 miles away.

But the new system takes Israel’s defense capabilities into outer space.

The Arrow-3 stands as one of the most advanced missile defense system in the world.

It aids Israel in fending off long-range missiles, including taking down targets in space.

New missile has half the weight of Arrow-2 and has better operational capabilities. It has nailed a simulation designed to replicate long range missiles possessed by Islamic forces.

The warhead of the missile splits off and becomes a kill satellite to track down intended targets in space.

Arrow-3: Know More

  • Arrow 3 intercepts ballistic missiles, especially those carrying weapons of mass destruction.
  • It attacks ballistic missiles traversing at altitudes of over 100 km and in greater ranges.
  • It could also be ship-based.
  • Faster than Arrow 2, it is slightly smaller weighing nearly half.
  • An Arrow 3 battery is expected to intercept salvos of more than five ballistic missiles within 30 seconds.
  • Arrow 3 can be launched into an area of space before it is known where the target missile is going.
  • Arrow 3 has the same launch system as Arrow 2.
  • Reportedly it cost $2–3 million per unit.