Current Affairs Questions & Answers - Oct 05, 2016

1)   RBI has released the Monetary Policy on Oct 4th 2016. By how many basis points has it cut the repo rate?

a. 15
b. 25
c. 35
d. 45
Answer  Explanation  Related Ques


The Reserve Bank of India on 4th October 2016 cut the repo rate by 25 basis points and also said the key takeaways from the RBI policy were as follows:

  • The RBI indicated international growth has slowed more than anticipated through 2016 so far
  • Brexit, banking stress in Europe, Chinese debt, rising protectionism and lowered confidence in monetary policy were key risks.
  • World trade volume contraction was sharper than anticipated in the first half of 2016, and the outlook was bleak
  • As global markets have shrugged off the Brexit vote, an uneasy calm remains regarding uncertainty about the stance of monetary policy of systematic central banks
  • Outlook for agricultural activity in India is bright
  • First advance estimated of Kharif foodgrain production for 2016-2017 was at a record high
  • Industrial sector was impacted by manufacturing-driven contraction in Q2 of the fiscal following the addition of a sequential deceleration in the gross value added in Q1.
  • Steel and cement production are strong but the output of the core industries as a whole was weighted down by decline in the production of coal, natural gas and crude oil
  • Business expectations as per RBI’s industrial outlook survey remained expansionary in Q2 and Q3.
  • Strong public investment in roads, railways and inland waterways and increased spending from the 7th Pay Commission award will strive to improve industrial outlook
  • Acceleration in the pace of activity in services sector in Q1 appears to have sustained
  • Inflation excluding fuel and food have been around 5 percent mainly with respect to education, medical and personal care services.
  • Household inflation expectations in the Sept 2016 round of RBI survey have risen
  • Input costs in the manufacturing sector including staff costs have risen but corporates lack pricing power to pass costs onto customers
  • Liquidity conditions remained comfortable in Q3, while exports were down but sharp fall in imports have helped contain trade deficit
  • Deficit in remittances and flattening of software earnings may have to be watched
  • Forex reserves stood at record high of USD 372 billion by Sept 30, 2016
  • RBI also cut the key lending repo rate to 6.25 percent as the panel felt inflation levels were low enough to reduce loan rates
  • Six member Monetary Policy Committee headed by governor Urjit Patel has agreed that inflation was unlikely to overshoot the threshold level of 6 percent.
  • A lower repo rate at which banks borrow from the RBI would mean households may expect cheaper bank loans to buy houses and goods such as cars
  • GoI has also announced measures to control food inflation pressures, especially with regard to pulses- measures will control the momentum of food inflation in coming months
  • While Indian economy grew by 7.1% in April to June period (the slowest in 6 quarters) RBI and MPC have expected a revival in coming months boosted by rain and government bonanza for its employees

2)   Which well known researcher and conservationist was appointed Chevalier de l'Ordre National du Mérite (Knight in the National Order of Merit) by the French Government?

a. Prajna Chowta
b. Kamal Hassan
c. Teesta Setalvad
d. Medha Patkar
Answer  Explanation 

ANSWER: Prajna Chowta

Elephant researcher and conservationist Prajna Chowta was honoured with the Chevalier de l'Ordre National du Mérite (Knight in the National Order of Merit) by the French Government. Her appointment by the President of the French Republic comes in recognition of a life devoted to caring for wild Asian elephants

  • Chowta has founded the Aane Mane Foundation which has been researching and conserving wild Asian elephants
  • She has also authored the Elephant Code Book on captive elephant management as well as the French book Enfant d’Elephant (Elephant’s Infant) in 2014
  • The book captures the link between tribals and elephants in the Indian settings
  • As a researcher, Chowta also developed an online monitoring system and one of the first GPS collars for India’s elephants
  • She was also among the first few Indian women to be appointed Chevalier de l'Ordre National du Mérite (Knight in the National Order of Merit)
  • Kiran Mazumdar Shaw and Kamal Hassan was honoured under the French government’s Legion of Honour award in 2016 as well
  • The National Order of Merit is a French order of merit with membership awarded by President of the French Republic
  • It was founded on 3rd December 1963 by President Charles de Gaulle
  • Reason for this order’s establishment was twofold- to replace the larger number of ministerial orders given by the ministries and create an award lower than Legion of Honour, which is generally for French citizens

3)   Jawhar Sircar has resigned as CEO of which corporation?

a. Prasar Bharati
d. None of the above
Answer  Explanation 

ANSWER: Prasar Bharati

Jawhar Sircar on 3rd October 2016 resigned as CEO of Prasar Bharati Corporation

  • His resignation came four months ahead of the end of the tenure which is due to end in February 2017
  • As per rules of the Prasar Bharati or Broadcasting Corporation of India Act 1990, chairman or any other member may resign the office by giving notice thereof in writing to the President of India and on such resignation being accepted
  • Chairman or other member in such cases will be deemed to have vacated his office
  • Sircar was appointed the Prasar Bharati CEO in 2012 by UPA
  • He also served as Secretary of the Ministry of Culture, GoI from 2008 to 2012 where he reported directly to the PM for most of the tenure
  • Prasar Bharati is a public service broadcaster of India and is a statutory body under the Prasar Bharati Act
  • It came into existence in November 1997
  • Objectives of public service broadcasting was attained in terms of the Prasar Bharati Act 1990 through AIR and Doordarshan

4)   Which country elected its first female president on 3rd Oct 2016?

a. Liberia
b. Estonia
c. Namibia
d. Slovakia
Answer  Explanation 

ANSWER: Estonia

Kersti Kaljulaid on 3rd Oct 2016 was elected as the President of Estonia by the parliament.

  • With this, she became the first female president in Estonia and won vote 81-0 with 20 members in absentia or abstaining
  • She is the first female president elect and due to take office on 10th Oct 2016 as the fifth president of the country
  • She is the first woman to be President of Estonia since the nation declared independence in 1918 and again in 1991
  • She will also be the youngest elected President at the age of 46
  • She is a biology major with an MBA
  • She has also worked as a project manager, an investment banker and economic adviser
  • Since May 2011, she was a rep of Estonia in the European Court of Auditors

5)   China has made rapid advances in controlling a major disease of which plant using gene technology?

a. Wheat
b. Rice
c. Cotton
d. None of the above
Answer  Explanation 

ANSWER: Cotton

China is the largest cotton producer in the world. Using gene technology, it has made a breakthrough in the control of a major disease of cotton plants

  • Chinese scientists found gene-interference technology can prevent the spread of pathogenic fungus which causes verticillium dahliae wilt, state-run Xinhua news agency reported.
  • Verticillium Dahliae is a vascular fungal pathogen responsible for devastating many crops
  • Led by Guo Huishan, the research group has discovered the manner in which fungus infects cotton
  • The have developed a new strain of fungus resistance cotton with increase of 22.25 percent in resistance
  • Anti pathogenic fungus cotton will also increase agricultural incomes

6)   Which foundation has signed a MoU with IIT-Kharagpur for funding socially relevant projects?

a. Wipro
b. Infosys
d. None of the above
Answer  Explanation  Related Ques

ANSWER: Infosys

The philanthropic arm of Infosys, the Infosys Foundation has signed an MoU with IIT_Kharagpur for funding socially relevant projects.

  • Funding of travel to international conferences for women and the celebrated research carried out by the IIT in association with ASI for studying the antiquity of the Indus Valley is being carried out as per the MoU
  • Corporate houses have a long term relation with this IIT in sponsoring research and consultant projects
  • The institute receives INR 100 crore each year for industrially relevant research from various industrial houses
  • Murthy also holds a position on the board of governors at the IIT-Kharagpur
  • The project 'Tracking the Antiquity and Climate during Bronze Age Harappan /Indus Valley Civilisation (IVC) in India Using Isotope & Latest Chronological Techniques (CVO) aims at studying climate change and its historic importance in cultures

7)   Where is the world’s first Cybathlon being held?

a. Zurich
b. London
c. New York
d. None of the above
Answer  Explanation  Related Ques

ANSWER: Zurich

Athletes with robotic prostheses from across the globe will gather in Zurich to be part of the world’s first Cybathlon

  • They will compete across the a number of disciplines to test latest assistive technologies
  • Races are there for powered wheelchairs and exoskeletons.
  • There's a competition to complete a set of tasks with a robotic arm, and a similar one for robotic legs.
  • The cycling race only allows for pedalling by the artificial stimulation of motor nerves.
  • The most fascinating one is the Brain Computer Interface race where athletes paralysed from neck down play a game using electrodes connected to the brain; the specially created game involves using avatars to score points
  • The Cybathlon has been thought of by Robert Riener, a professor of Sensory-Motor Systems at the Swiss Federal Institute of Technology.
  • "We want to motivate developers to create technologies that provide real support to people in daily life," he explains.
  • The Paralympics forbids the use of assistive technologies unlike the Cybathlon

8)   Chairman emeritus of TATA Sons, Ratan Tata has invested in which virtual fitness coaching platform w.e.f 3rd Oct 2016?

a. GOSii
b. GOCii
c. GOJii
d. None of the above
Answer  Explanation  Related Ques

ANSWER: None of the above

TATA Sons Chairman Emeritus Ratan Tata has invested in GOQii a virtual fitness coaching platform.

  • According to the IDC, GOQii has been ranked number one with a market share of 16.1 percent in Q2, 2016
  • Its CEO and founder is Vishal Gondal
  • The company is headquartered in CA with offices in Mumbai and China
  • It is a leader in health and lifestyle coaching platforms
  • It offers wearable application, guidance from international experts and counselling
  • The company raised USD 13.4 million in Series A Funding in November 2015
  • TATA group and Ratan Tata have invested in numerous Indian and global startups as well as through RNT Associates.