Current Affairs Questions & Answers - May 02, 2017

1)   Which scheme(s) was/were launched by the Labour Ministry on International Labour Day?

a. One IP-Two Dispensaries
b. Aadhaar Based Online Claim Submission
c. Both of the above
d. Neither of the above
Answer  Explanation 

ANSWER: Both of the above

Minister of State (I/C) for Labour and Employment, Shri Bandaru Dattatreya launched two schemes “One IP- Two Dispensaries” and “Aadhaar based Online Claim Submission” on the occasion of International Labour Day on May 1, 2017.

Under One IP- Two Dispensaries scheme, ESIC has given an option to an Insured Person (IP) to choose two dispensaries, one for self and another for family through an employer.

This will benefit all IPs, especially migrant workers who are working in other than home State, while their families are living in their native States.

Because of non-availability of option of second dispensary, the dependant members of family are often deprived of medical benefits.

By introducing the concept of ‘One IP- Two Dispensaries’, IP as well as their family members would now be able to get treatment from either of the dispensaries and in case of emergency from any ESI Institution.

As of now, around 3 crores IPs are covered under ESIC and total number of beneficiaries i.e. IPsand their family members is over 12 crores.

Under Aadhaar based Online Claim Submission scheme all EPF Members who have activated their UAN and seeded their KYC (Aadhaar) with EPFO will be able to apply for PF final settlement (form19),

Pension withdrawal benefit (Form10-C) and PF part withdrawal (Form31) from the their UAN Interface directly.

The three forms collectively form more than 80% of EPFO’s claim workload. Members can complete the whole process online and they neither need to interact with the employer nor with the EPFO field office to submit online claim.

They are not required to give any supporting document while preferring online PF part withdrawal case. Member’s applying online will be taken as his self-declaration for preferring the advance claim.

GoI Labour Initiatives

  • Government has recognised the importance of labour and the contribution of workers and is dedicated to their welfare.
  • It is ensuring job security, wage security and social security to them
  • As per the scheme ‘SPREE’ by ESIC the new accounts of 77 lakh individuals and 66 thousand establishments have been opened and EPFO has also added around 50 lakhs new accounts in its recently launch scheme
  • 34 million registrations have already been done on National Career Service (NCS) Portal.

2)   Who has been appointed the new CGA in May 2017?

a. Anthony Lianzula
b. David R. Symlieh
c. David Lianzula
d. None of the above
Answer  Explanation 

ANSWER: Anthony Lianzula

Mr. Anthony Lianzuala took over as the New Controller General of Accounts (CGA) in national capital in May, 2017.

Earlier, the Government of India had appointed Mr. Anthony Lianzuala, a 1982-batch Indian Civil Accounts Service (ICAS) Officer, as the new Controller General of Accounts (CGA), Department of Expenditure, Ministry of Finance with effect from May 1, 2017.

He will be the First person from the North-Eastern Region to hold this position.

Mr Lianzuala, a graduate from the Hindu College of Delhi University, has vast and rich experience in the government both at the Centre and the State levels.

He worked at higher positions in the Central Board of Direct Taxes(CBDT), Ministry of Information & Broadcasting, Ministry of Consumer Affairs, Food & Public Distribution, Ministry of Commerce and Ministry of Rural Development.

Mr Lianzuala was the first Director of training institute in the field of Public Financial Management and Accounting in the North-East named INGAF-NER, based in Aizawl, Mizoram.

He is highly credited for his IT initiatives in the North-Eastern Region. He was instrumental in computerising the functions of the State Treasuries of Mizoram.

He has also served in Mizoram as Secretary in various departments including Agricultural Marketing, Border Trade and Relief & Rehabilitation.

He was also selected as Managing Director of North-Eastern Agricultural Marketing Corporation (NERAMAC), a Public-Sector Undertaking, based in Guwahati.

3)   Which educational alliance has China launched with partnership by universities from 15 countries?

a. Asian Universities Alliance
b. Asian Colleges Alliance
c. Asian University Alliance
d. None of the above
Answer  Explanation 

ANSWER: Asian Universities Alliance

Continuing with its drive to take a leadership position in different aspects of Asian life, China on April 30, 2017 launched an Asian Universities Alliance with participation by universities from 15 countries.

From India, the Indian Institute of Technology, Bombay, has become a member.

The alliance, which has been put together by the elite Tsinghua University in Beijing, aims to promote exchanges of students and teaching faculties across different universities in Asia.

They will also come together to promote joint research in a range of areas.

IIT, Bombay has a collaboration with Monash University in Australia making it possible for students to access wider education opportunities and receive degrees signed by presidents of two universities.

Similar collaboration may be possible with other member universities in this Asian alliance, he said.

Alliance partners include the Peking University in Beijing, University of Tokyo, Hong Kong University of Science and Technology, Singapore National University, and many more.

4)   Which space company hoisted a classified satellite for the National Reconnaissance Office of the US?

a. Virgin Galactic
b. Blue Origin
c. Bigelow Airspace
d. SpaceX
Answer  Explanation 


SpaceX has launched a top-secret spy satellite for the US government.

The unmanned Falcon 9 rocket lifted off May 1, 2017 from its NASA-leased pad at Kennedy Space Center in Florida.

It hoisted a classified satellite for the National Reconnaissance Office.

Several minutes into the flight, the first stage booster timed for a touchdown at Cape Canaveral Air Force Station. SpaceX strives to return most of its first-stage boosters for reuse.

This was the fourth SpaceX booster landing at Cape Canaveral; even more have landed on an ocean platform.

The company's first recycled rocket flew last month.

SpaceX: Know More

  • CEO: Elon Musk (2002–)
  • Founder: Elon Musk
  • Founded: 2002
  • Headquarters: Hawthorne, California, United States
  • Number of employees: ~6,000; (April 2017)
  • Type of business: Privately held company

5)   Which Indian origin women veterans of the South African Freedom struggle were awarded the Order of Luthuli in Silver?

a. Fatima Meer, Shantie Naidoo
b. Ela Gandhi, Fatima Meer
c. Shantie Naidoo, Ela Gandhi
d. None of the above
Answer  Explanation 

ANSWER: Fatima Meer, Shantie Naidoo

Two Indian-origin women veterans of the freedom struggle in South African were conferred the highest National Order awards by President Jacob Zuma on 28th April 2017.

Fatima Meer posthumously received the Order of Luthuli in Silver; while Shantie Naidoo joined 21 others to receive the same award at the Presidential Guest House in Pretoria.

Meer, a lifelong friend of the late Nelson Mandela together with her husband Ismail Meer, started her activist career as a high school student aged 17 in 1945.

Meer mobilised high school students and established the Students Passive Resistance Committee to canvass and raise funds for the Passive Resistance Campaign.

Excelling as a historian and sociologist, Meer was a prolific writer, including a biography of Mandela, as well as the script for the film Taj Mahal, made by Indian filmmaker Akbar Khan.

In 1969, she published a book, Portrait of Indian South Africans, donating the total proceeds thereof to the Gandhi Settlement towards the building of the Gandhi Museum and Clinic at the Phoenix Settlement started by Gandhi.

After the advent of democracy in 1994 under President Mandela, Meer served as a member of the parliament before passing on in 2010.

Naidoo is a descendant of Thambi Naidoo, one of Gandhi's most trusted lieutenants during his tenure in South Africa at the turn of the last century.

She suffered frequent imprisonment as a member of the Transvaal Indian Congress and the African National Congress.

African National Congress: Know More

  • Abbreviation : ANC
  • President: Jacob Zuma
  • Chairman: Baleka Mbete
  • Secretary-General: Gwede Mantashe
  • Spokesperson: Zizi Kodwa
  • Deputy President: Cyril Ramaphosa
  • National Chairperson: Baleka Mbete
  • Deputy Secretary General: Jessie Duarte
  • Treasurer General: Zweli Mkhize
  • Founder: John Dube, Pixley ka Isaka Seme, Sol Plaatje
  • Founded : 8 January 1912

6)   Where in Nagpur, Maharashtra has the state's first automatic weather station been set up?

a. Dhantoli
b. Gandhi Baug
c. Mangalwari
d. Dongargaon
Answer  Explanation 

ANSWER: Dongargaon

Maharashtra chief minister Devendra Fadnavis has inaugurated the state’s first automatic weather station at Dongargaon in Nagpur.

The state government proposes to install around 2,065 such weather stations across the state on a public private partnership (PPP) mode in this year and 1,000 in next year.

The weather stations will help in measuring the wind direction, wind speed, air temperature, relative humidity and record amount of rainfall.

The information obtained by the weather stations would be shared among the farmers by making them available on Mahavedh portal (Maharashtra agriculture weather information network) as well as on the mobile application of Skymet.

Weather forecast firm Skymet Weather Private Ltd will be establishing up these weather stations.

The farmers of the state can make use of the information to manage sowing in a much better and planned way as per the weather conditions.

These weather stations are significant because the IMD forecast is limited to only four zones.

The weather related information is not made available by the IMD at the level of taluks. But, the AWS will provide forecast up to taluka level.

As one weather station will be installed for an area of around 12×12 km, micro-level weather forecasts will be possible.

Additionally, the digital kiosks will be set-up in every Gram Panchayat to disburse weather related information and expert advice on crop pattern to the farmers.

During Phase 1, information will be shared using SMS. In the second phase, half hourly updates will be provided to all the Gram Panchayats.

The sensors of the AWS will be able to record important parameters relevant for agriculture like temperature, relative humidity, wind speed and direction, rainfall, solar radiation, leaf wetness, soil moisture and temperature and atmospheric pressure and evapotranspiration.

The state government plans to use the data provided by the AWS to prepare location-specific agriculture advisories, better disaster management, design crop insurance schemes and establish a weather database bank.

7)   What does the NIO/North Indian Ocean sea constitute?

a. Arabian Sea
b. Bay of Bengal
c. Part of the Indian ocean up to 5 degree latitude
d. All of the above
Answer  Explanation 

ANSWER: All of the above

Global warming may be inching the oceans higher every year but researchers studying the seas around India report a paradox.

From 1993 to 2003 - the first decade when satellites started to consistently track the rise and fall of ocean heights and global temperatures soared - the North Indian Ocean (NIO) sea levels fell.

The NIO consists of the Arabian Sea, the Bay of Bengal and part of the Indian Ocean up till the 5°S latitude. After 2004, sea levels began an unprecedented, accelerated spike till 2014.

This rise and fall was even as global temperatures steadily climbed and registered their largest two-decadal jump in more than a century.

Previous studies that had measured ocean heights based on traditional tide gauges found that the NIO - like the rest of the world’s seas - continued to rise between 1993 and 2004.

While Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change reports have concluded that while unabated greenhouse gas emissions into the atmosphere would cause oceans to rise every year, there would be years during which some seas could register a fall.

Scientists associated with the study said that such a “decadal swing” in the North Indian Ocean was unique and never observed in either the Pacific or Atlantic oceans.

The NIO went down about 0.3 mm a year and from 2004 gained about 6 mm annually. This was twice the global, annual average of about 3 mm.

When temperature and sea level trends in the NIO were mathematically separated out from the other oceans, the fall was even more dramatic: nearly 3 mm per year and the Arabian Sea cooling off rapidly at 4 mm per year.

Explanation for NIO Rise and Fall

  • Sea levels primarily rise due to water expanding from atmospheric heat and, more water being added from, for instance, melting ice sheets and glaciers.
  • 70% of the NIO’s warming could be explained by expansion.
  • Unlike the Pacific and Atlantic, the NIO was hemmed in all sides, except for an outlet on the southern side.
  • This influenced the rate at which heat was absorbed and flushed out from within the system.
  • According to their calculations, heat was moving out slower during after 2004 than during the 1990s.
  • The wind flows, which welled warm water on the Indian Ocean surface, changed directions every decade and probably influenced sea level patterns.
  • It could be that coming decades - in spite of rapid, rising temperatures - will see a fall in sea levels but that’s still hypothetical.

8)   Which country’s first female CJ was suspended after accusations of interfering with executive powers on May 1, 2017?

a. Bangladesh
b. Sri Lanka
c. Nepal
d. Pakistan
Answer  Explanation 


Nepal's first woman SC chief justice was suspended following an impeachment motion filed in the parliament making accusations against her of bias and interference with executive powers.

Karki was suspended automatically after the motion signed by nearly half the members in the parliament was registered.

Deputy PM Bimalendra Nidhi resigned in protest because he disagreed with the motion against the CJ, which he feels will create a gap between the legislature and the judiciary. He was also the home minister.

Nidhi is from the Nepali Congress party, one of the two ruling parties whose members signed the motion.

Karki was accused of interfering with executive powers and issuing biased decisions. The motion cited a court order overturning the government’s appointment of the police chief.

The motion, filed late Sunday, needs to be debated in parliament and then receive two—thirds of the votes in the 601—seat parliament for it to be approved.

Karki was known for zero tolerance against corruption. She was appointed chief justice in April 2016 and was due to retire next month.

Sushila Karki: Know More

  • Sushila Karki ( born 7 June 1952 ) in Biratnagar who became first woman Chief Justice of Supreme Court of Nepal on 13 April 2016.
  • The Constitutional Council headed by Prime Minister KP Oli recommended her name for the post of Chief Justice of Supreme court of Nepal.
  • She is the first woman to lead the judiciary of Nepal.
  • She is known for her zero tolerance against corruption in the judiciary.
  • On 30 April 2017, she was registered with impeachment motion by Maoist Centre and Nepali Congress.

9)   India's eight industries grew by ___ percent in March against 1 percent in Feb 2017.

a. 2
b. 3
c. 4
d. 5
Answer  Explanation 


India’s eight core industries grew by 5 percent in March against a 1 percent growth rate in February.

The growth, fastest in three months, was led by higher coal and steel production.

However, growth rate of the core industries was lower than 9.3 percent, recorded in March last year.

As per the government data released, coal production increased by 10 percent in March as against 2.5 per cent a year ago.

Steel (alloy + non-alloy) production was up 11 percent while it had expanded by 7.8 per cent in March 2016.

Electricity generation was up by 5.9 per cent. Crude oil and natural gas production was 0.9 percent and 8.3 percent respectively, on annual basis.

On the other hand, cement production declined by 6.8 percent in March this and also fertiliser output (-0.8 percent). There was also decline in production of refinery products (- 0.3 percent).

The core industries, which contribute 38 per cent to the total industrial production, had expanded by 1 per cent in February and 3.4 per cent in March.

The expansion was recorded at 5.6 per cent in December.

On cumulative basis, the infrastructure industries grew by 4.5 per cent last financial year ended March 2017, higher than 4 per cent recorded in the previous fiscal.

IIP Index: Know More

  • The Index of Industrial Production (IIP) is an index for India which details out the growth of various sectors in an economy such as mining, electricity and manufacturing.
  • The all India IIP is a composite indicator that measures the short-term changes in the volume of production of a basket of industrial products during a given period with respect to that in a chosen base period.
  • It is compiled and published monthly by the Central Statistical Organisation (CSO) six weeks after the reference month ends.
  • The level of the Index of Industrial Production (IIP) is an abstract number, the magnitude of which represents the status of production in the industrial sector for a given period of time as compared to a reference period of time.
  • The base year was at one time fixed at 1993–94 so that year was assigned an index level of 100.
  • The current base year is 2004-05.
  • The Eight Core Industries comprise nearly 38 % of the weight of items included in the Index of Industrial Production (IIP).
  • These are Electricity , steel, refinery products, crude oil, coal, cement, natural gas and fertilisers.

10)   What is the fiscal deficit target of India for 2016-2017?

a. 3.2 percent
b. 3.3 percent
c. 3.4 percent
d. 3.5 percent
Answer  Explanation  Related Ques

ANSWER: 3.5 percent

GoI is confident of attaining the fiscal deficit target of 3.5 percent for 2016-2017.

India's fiscal deficit at the end of February 2016-17 was Rs 6.05 lakh crore, which was 113.4 per cent of the full-year target, on account of lower realisation on non-tax revenues.

The fiscal deficit, which is a gap between government’s total receipts and expenditure, at the end of February was higher when compared with 107.4 per cent in the similar period of the previous fiscal.

Finance Minister Arun Jaitley in the Budget had set the fiscal deficit target at 3.5 per cent for FY 2016-17, after achieving the preceding year’s target of 3.9 per cent.