1) Where is the National War Memorial being set up?
a. New Delhi
ANSWER: New Delhi
- The national war memorial aims to honour 22,600 soldiers who have laid down their lives in wars and operations since Independence.
- The tentative inauguration by PM Narendra Modi is being set for August 15 next year.
- MoU for appointing the first prize winners of the two-stage global design competition held last year as consultants for the NWM and museum will be inked on April 1.
- While architect Yogesh Chandrahasan and his team won the prize for the NWM ($30,000 award money), the Spa Studio View bagged it for the museum ($75,000).
- This will be followed by the detailed project reports.
- The construction contracts, in turn, will be concluded.
- NWM was first proposed by the armed forces, which have consistently raised it with successive governments without much success due to politico-bureaucratic apathy.
- The Army does maintain around 120 regional and individual war memorials but India is probably the world's only major country not to have dedicated NWM.
- The NWM will basically be a landscape-type memorial with "retaining walls'', which will have names of all the martyrs inscribed on them.
- The adjoining museum, in turn, will showcase glorious moments in the military history of India.
2) Which of the following is the apex policy making body for indirect taxes?
Apex policy making body for indirect taxes, CBEC is now to be known as Central Board of Indirect Taxes & Customers in the run up to the GST regime from July 1.
CBEC is being renamed as the Central Board of Indirect Taxes and Customers after getting legislative approval.
CBIC will supervise the work of all field formations and directorates and assist the government in policy making in relation to GST, continuing central excise levy and custom functions.
The existing formations of central excise and service tax under the CBEC have been re-organised to implement and enforce the provisions of the proposed GST Laws, it added.
The renamed Directorate General of Goods & Service Tax Intelligence is also being strengthened and expanded to become an important wing of the government in its fight against tax evasion and black money.
The existing training establishment, to be renamed as National Academy of Customs, Indirect Taxes and Narcotics will have an all-India presence.
This will enable capacity building to the employees of the indirect tax administration of the Centre as well as of the State Governments and to members of Trade and Industry.
GST: Know More
- Indirect tax reform GST is expected to curb tax evasion.
- It will make commodities cheaper and add up to 2 per cent to India’s GDP growth.
- GST will subsume excise, service tax, VAT and other local levies.
- The CBIC will have 21 zones.
- It will have 101 GST Tax payer Services Commissionerates comprising 15 sub-Commissionerates,
- 768 Divisions, 3,969 Ranges, 49 Audit Commissionerates and 50 Appeals Commissionerates are also included .
3) When was Earth Hour initiative started in Australia?
Lights were switched off around the world on 8:30 pm on 25th March 2017 to mark the 10th annual Earth Hour.
The aim was to draw attention to climate change.
The initiative began in Australia in 2007 as a grassroots gesture by the WWF Australia against man made carbon dioxide emissions linked to a warming planet.
The earth hour saw electric lights switched off for an hour in 7,000 cities across 172 nations at 8:30 pm local time.
The initiative aims to highlight the need to act on climate change and save a few MW of power in the process.
Earth Hour: Know More
- Among famous structures in Australia taking part were Sydney's Opera House, the Harbour Bridge, Luna Park, Town Hall and Sydney Tower Eye.
- The list includes some of the best known skyscrapers and historic buildings including the tallest building in the world, the Burj Khalifa in Dubai.
- Other famous structures which took part include London's Elizabeth Tower, Parliament, Roman Colosseum, Blue Mosque in Istanbul, Eiffel Tower in Paris, Kremlin at Moscow and the Red Square as well as the Pyramids in Egypt.
- Earth Hour saw landmark environmental initiatives like the planting of a Ugandan forest, ban on soft plastics in Galapagos Island and a 3.4 million ha marine park in waters off Argentina as a result of principled activism.
4) Which literary award was won by prominent Tamil writer Ashokamitran?
a. Sahitya Akademi award
b. Creative writing fellowship from University of Iowa
c. Both a and b
d. Neither a nor b
ANSWER: Both a and b
Well known Tamil writer and Sahitya Akademi award winner Tyagarajan whose pen name was Ashokamitran has died at age 86 on 23rd March 2017.
The oeuvre includes 200 short stories, 8 novels, 15 novellas and other prose writings.
Born on Sept 22, 1931 and is one of the few writers who wrote fluently in Tamil and English
He had a career spanning six decades
He won the Sahitya Akademi award in 1996 for Appavin Snegidhar, a collection of short stories.
Twice, he had been awarded the creative writing fellowship at the Iowa University.
As editor of Tamil literary magazine Kanaiyaazhi for 25 years, he maintained close links with the mainstream media and his works were published in leading journals and newspapers.
He also wrote Karaindha Nizhalgal, a fictionalised account of the Tamil film world in a novel.
He also wrote about classical music.
5) What does DESI stand for, in the context of space dust in the Milky Way?
a. Dark Energy Spectroscopic Instrument
b. Dark Energy Spectroscopic Initiative
c. Dual Energy Spectroscopic Instrument
d. Dual Energy Spectrographic Instrument
ANSWER: Dark Energy Spectroscopic Instrument
The 3D rendering of space dust has been carried out by scientists at Berkeley Lab.
Dust can dim or obscure the light of stars and galaxies beyond.
The project name is DESI or Dark Energy Spectroscopic Instrument.
This measures the universe's accelerating expansion rate after its launch in 2019.
DESI will create a map of more than 30 million distant galaxies, but the map will be distorted if the dust is ignored.
The project will map dust in three dimensions, to find out how much dust is in any 3D region in the sky and the Milky way galaxy.
The dust filled universe is part of the survey of the southern galactic plane, as dark patches.
Maps composed compare dust within one kiloparsec or 3262 light years in the outer milky way.
Data is used from Pan STARRS sky survey in Hawaii and from a separate survey called APOGEE at Apache Point, New Mexico.
A new technique has been used called infrared spectroscopy. This lets astronomers peer through dust.
Infrared measurements can cut through the dust that obscures different types of observations.
APOGEE and Research Findings: Know More
- APOGEE focuses on light from 100,000 red giant stars across the Milky Way, including those in the central halo.
- 3D maps have a much greater resolution or ability to see details than previously existed.
- The results were found to be in conflict with models that expect dust in the Milky Way to be predictably distributed and to exhibit larger grain sizes in areas where most dust resides.
- Dust properties vary little with the amount of dust so existing models of dust in the Milky Way may need adjustment to account for a different chemical makeup.
- In denser regions, it was thought that the dust grains will collect, so you have more big grains and smaller grains.
- Dense dust clouds appear the same as concentrated dust clouds. Variations in dust properties are not a product of dust density.
- There is one third of the galaxy missing and scientists are working on missing third of the galaxy.
6) Which is India's biggest ecommerce company?
d. None of the above
India's largest ecommerce company Flipkart is acquiring eBay's operations in a deal structured as part of the USD 2 billion capital raising.
This boosts the ecommerce major in its fight for market share on the home turf.
Ebay's Indian unit is a distant sixth in market share after Flipkart, Amazon, Shopclues, Paytm and Snapdeal.
India has a USD 15 billion ecommerce market.
This ebay India unit will get folded into Flipkart as part of the transaction.
Flipkart has closed its USD 1 billion funding from Microsoft, Tencent and eBay.
Round values Flipkart at USD 10 billion.
This is lower than USD 15.1 billion valuation in the previous account but higher than the USD 8 billion valuation expected in the round.
Flipkart has three CEOs at the helm namely Sachin and Binny Bansal and Kalyan Krishnamurthy.
Ebay is a small investor in Snapdeal. It has made unsuccessful attempts to acquire the New Delhi based online retailer.
Ebay was launched in India in 2004. This is ahead of Flipkart's date of inception and the entry of Amazon into Indian markets.
Tencent has backed messaging platform Hike and online medical platform Practo in the past.
Nasdaq based eBay is part of an investment consortium including Microsoft and Tencent.
It will be collectively investing USD 1.5-2 billion in Flipkart.
The market has entered with the acquisition of Bazee.com, has seen eBay lag behind with other e-commerce companies surging ahead.
Combined seller base of eBay, Flipkart, Myntra and Jabong will make this one of the strongest e-commerce entities in India.
7) What is this year's theme of World TB day on March 24, 2017?
a. Unite to End TB
b. Meet to End TB
c. Join to End TB
d. Work to End TB
ANSWER: Unite to End TB
This year, the theme of World TB Day 2017 is Unite to End TB.
WHO has placed a special focus on uniting efforts to Leave No One Behind.
India has the highest number of TB patients internationally.
This constitutes about 25 percent of all cases.
While urban TB afflicts more individuals annually, a similar case in rural area remains infectious for a longer time period as per new research findings.
WHO: Know More
- Headquarters: Geneva, Switzerland
- Founded: 7 April 1948
- Head: Margaret Chan
- Customer service: 011 6656 4800
- Founders: India, Philippines, Brazil, Canada, Argentina, Colombia, more
- Parent organization: United Nations
8) Who has been appointed part time chairman of Catholic Syrian Bank?
a. TS Anantharaman
b. TS Subramaniam
c. TS Anantdev
d. None of the above
ANSWER: TS Anantharaman
RBI has accorded approval for the appointment of TS Anatharaman as part time chairman of Catholic Syrian Bank.
He has been holding the position of non executive director of the bank since Aug 28, 2009.
Anatharaman is a senior CA with wide experience in practice, service, consulting, industry and teaching.
He has served with the UN for 7 years.
Anantharaman was President of Chamber of Commerce, Thrissur, Thrissur Management Association and numerous other institutions.
Currently, he is investment consultant and director of numerous companies and institutions
9) Which well known photojournalist was honoured with Lifetime Achievement Award by I&B Ministry?
a. Raghu Rai
b. Altaf Qadri
c. Rajan Devadas
d. Dilip Mehta
ANSWER: Raghu Rai
Photojournalist Raghu Rai was conferred with the Lifetime Achievement Award on 22nd March 2017 by the I&B ministry for his contribution to the field.
Rai was honoured with the award by I&B minister M. Venkaiah Naidu at the 6th National Photography awards organised by the ministry.
A total of 13 photographers were awarded. Among the winners were Ravinder Kumar, Atul Choubey, Dipayan Bhar and KK Mustafah.
National Photography Awards is an annual event organized by the ministry to promote art, photography technique and encourage photographers from all corners of the country.
Raghu Rai: Know More
- Rai began his career at the age of 23.
- He has been a photographer for over 50 years.
- He is a Padma Shree awardee and served on the jury of World Press Photo and UNESCO's International Photo Contest.
- He is best known for his book “ Raghu Rai's India: Reflections in Colour and Reflections In Black and White.”
- He has 18 titles as part of his collection.
- This includes Raghu Rai's Delhi, The Sikhs and Calcutta.
- He garnered acclaim for his series on Great Masters of the Indian classical music, Mother Teresa and Satyajit Ray.
- Rai was awarded Photographer of the Year award by the US in the 1990s.
10) Who has been awarded the Abel Prize 2017 by Norwegian Academy of Science and Letters?
a. John Nash
b. Yves Meyer
c. Andrew Wiles
d. Jacob Sinai
ANSWER: Yves Meyer
The Norwegian Academy of Science and Letters has taken the decision to award the Abel Prize for 2017 to 77-year-old Yves Meyer.
The mathematician of the École normale superiéure Paris-Saclay France was honoured with the award for his role in the development of the mathematical theory of wavelets.
The winner of the 2017 Abel Prize was announced by Ole M. Sejersted, the President of the Norwegien Academy of Science and Letters.
Yves Meyer led the modern development of theory, joining mathematics, IT and computational science.
Wavelet analysis has been applied in the following arenas:
- Applied and computational harmonic analysis
- Data compression
- Noise reduction
- Medical imaging
- Digital Cinema
- Deconvolution of the Hubble space telescope images
- Recent LIGO detection of gravitational waves by black hole collision
Yves Meyer is to receive the prize from His Majesty King Harald V at an award ceremony in Oslo on May 23rd, 2017.
The Abel Prize recognizes and acknowledges contributions of depth and influence to mathematical sciences.
He has been annually awarded since 2003.
This carries a cash award of 6 million NOK.
Meyer carried out award winning work on harmonic analysis. His work has relevance for maths, IT and computer science.
It has useful real world applications. Collaborating with Stéphane Mallat, the work he has done is a pioneering piece of research.About Yves Meyer: Know More
The Abel Prize: Know More
- Born 19th July, 1939.
- Nationality : French
- Entered École normale supérieure de la rue d’Ulm in Paris in 1957
- Obtained PhD from University of Strasbourg in 1966
- He was professor of Mathematics at Université Paris-Sud, then École Polytechnique and Université Paris Dauphine.
- Then, he moved to the ENS Paris-Saclay where he worked at the Centre of Mathematics and its Applications
- He was a member of the French Académie des Sciences since 1993.
- In 1994, he was elected foreign honorary member of American Academy of Arts and Sciences
- He became foreign associate of the US National Academy of Sciences in 2014.
- Yves Meyer became a fellow of the American Mathematical Society in 2012.
- He has won the 1970 Salem and 2010 Gauss prizes for advance in maths
This prize is awarded by the Norwegien Academy of Science and Letters.
The choice of the laureate is on the basis of Abel Committee recommendations5 current mathematicians on the current committee are:
- John Rognes
- Marta Sanz-Solé
- Luigi Ambrosio
- Marie-France Vignéras
- Ben Green