Current Affairs Questions & Answers - Oct 10, 2016

1)   Oliver Hart and Bengt Holstrom won which award on 10th Oct in memory of Alfred Nobel?

a. Sveriges Riksbank Prize in Economic Sciences
b. Nobel Prize for Economics
c. Abel Prize
d. None of the above
Answer  Explanation 

ANSWER: Sveriges Riksbank Prize in Economic Sciences

Oliver Hart and Bengt Holstrom on 10th October 2016 won the 2016 Sveriges Riksbank Prize in Economic Sciences in memory of Alfred Nobel for their contributions to contract theory.

  • They developed a contract theory which is a comprehensive framework for analysing many diverse issues in contractual design such as performance based pay for top executives, deductibles and co-pays in insurance and privatisation of public sector activities
  • Fresh theoretical tools created by Hart and Holstrom are valuable to the understanding of real life institutions and contracts as well as potential pitfalls in public sector activities
  • In the 1970s. Bengnt Holestrom demonstrated how a principal should design an optimal contract for an agent whose action is partly observed by the principals
  • Holmstrom’s informativeness principle stated how this contract should link the agent’s pay to performance relevant information
  • Using the basic principal agent model, he demonstrated how a principal should design an optimal contract for an event whose action is partly unobserved by the principal
  • His informativeness principle stated precisely how this contract should link the agent’s pay to performance relevant information
  • Using the basic principal agent model, he demonstrated how the optimal contract carefully weights risk against incentives
  • Holstrom generalised these results to more realistic settings such as when employees are not only rewarded with pay but with potential promotion as well and individual members of the team free ride on the efforts of others
  • In the mid 1980s, Oliver Hart made a fundamental contribution to a new branch of contract theory that deals with the important case of incomplete contracts
  • Hart’s findings shed new light on ownership and control of businesses and have had a vast impact on several fields such as economics, political science and law
  • His research provides new theoretical tools for ascertaining the questions as to which kinds of companies should merge, proper mix of debt and equity financing and when institutions such as schools or prisons can be privately or publicly owned
  • While Hart is a Professor of Economics at Harvard University, Cambridge United States, Bengt Holstrom is a Professor of Economics and Management at MIT.

2)   What are the Great Balls of Fire?

a. Super hot blobs of gas being ejected near a dying star
b. Rays of the sun
c. Light emitted from a dying star
d. None of the above
Answer  Explanation  Related Ques

ANSWER: Super hot blobs of gas being ejected near a dying star

NASA’s Hubble Space Telescope in the first week of Oct 2016 detected the Great Balls of Fire.

  • These superheat blobs of gas, twice as large as planet Mars were being ejected near a dying star
  • These plasma balls were moving so fast through space it would take only 30 minutes for them to travel from Earth to the moon
  • Observations indicated that these balls of fire have been appearing every 8.5 years for at least part four centuries
  • Gas balls were observed near a red giant called V Hydra about 1200 light years away from earth
  • If scientists can find out where these balls are coming from, it could explain weird shapes seen in clouds of gas around the dying stars, which have been difficult for scientists to explain
  • The Hubble Space Telescope is a space telescope launched into low Earth orbit in the 1990s – it remains in operation and could last till 2030-2040
  • This is one of the largest and most versatile vital research tools and a public relations boon for astronomy
  • It is named after astronomer Edwin Hubble and is one of NASA’s Great Observatories along with the Compton Gamma Ray Observatory, the Chandra X-ray observatory and the Spitzer Space Telescope
  • With a 2.4m mirror, it has 4 main instruments observed in the near ultraviolet, visible and near infrared spectra
  • It was built by US space agency NASA with contribution from the ESA
  • Space Telescope Science Institute selects Hubble’s targets and processes the resulting data while the Goddard Space Flight Centre controls the spacecraft
  • It is the only telescope designed to be serviced by astronauts in space
  • Scientific successor to the Hubble, the James Webb Space Telescope is scheduled for launch in 2018

3)   A new termite species has been discovered in Kerala. In which sanctuary has it been discovered?

a. Malabar
b. Bharatpur
c. Kaziranga
d. None of the above
Answer  Explanation 

ANSWER: Malabar

A new species of termite Glyptotermes Chiraharitae has been discovered in Kakkayam in the Malabar Wildlife Sanctuary Kerala

  • The species has been named Chiraharitae after the tropical green forests of the Western Ghats where it has been discovered
  • Termites are of three types- damp wood, dry wood and subterranean.
  • Glyptotermes Chiraharitae species are of the damp wood category
  • They are exclusively wood dwelling and do not require any contact with soil
  • The flying adults of this species is approximately 10mm long while the soldiers are around 9.5mm long
  • Its relatives are known to attack mango, sal, banyan, astrocarpus, silver oak, jamun trees, sals
  • In India, there are 285 species of termites and among them are 61 documented from Kerala

4)   SC in its decision on 6th Oct 2016 held that a Hindu son can divorce his wife if she:

a. Is mentally unstable
b. Is unfaithful
c. Tries to separate him from his elderly parents
d. None of the above
Answer  Explanation 

ANSWER: Tries to separate him from his elderly parents

SC in its decision on Oct 6, 2016 held that a Hindu son can divorce his wife if she tries to separate him from his elderly parents

  • Apex court holds it is the pious obligation of the son to maintain his parents
  • It can be held that a Hindu son cannot separate himself from his parents on getting married at the demand of his wife, at least when he’s the sole earning member in the family
  • The observation was made by the bench comprising the man to annul his 24-year-old marriage while setting aside Karnataka HC judgement which had dismissed the decree of divorce gathered by the Bangalore family court in 2001
  • A woman becomes part of the husband’s family and this she cannot seek to separate him from his parents just to enjoy his income
  • Insisting the husband should live separately from parents is a western thought alien to Indian culture, the SC held that the son who was brought up and given education by his parents had a moral and legal obligation to take care and maintain his parents when they became old and when they either had no income or a meagre income
  • A woman who becomes an integral part of the husband’s family after being married should have a justifiable reason to separate his husband from his family

5)   Which Rio medallist was appointed brand ambassador of the PSU known as Vizag Steel popularly?

a. Deepa Malik
b. Sakshi Malik
c. PV Sindhu
d. None of the above
Answer  Explanation 


Badminton ace and Rio silver medallist PV Sindhu was on Oct 8 2016 appointed as the Brand ambassador of Rashtriya Ispat Nigam Limited also known as Vizag Steel

  • The company will have the brand logo displayed on the player’s jersey under the aegis of DWF and BAI international and domestic tournaments
  • Deal was facilitated by sports marketing and brand licensing firm Baseline
  • Sindhu was currently among the top 10 ranked players in the world, became the first Indian female athlete to win the Olympic silver medal at Rio Olympics 2016
  • She is also the first athlete to win back-to-back medals at the World Badminton Championship
  • Vizag Steel or RINL is the corporate entity of the Vizag Steel Plant and a navratna PSE under the Union Ministry of Steel
  • Vizag Steel is the first shore based integrated steel plant in the country and it is known for its quality products
  • A market leader in long steel products, it caters to the requirements of the construction, manufacturing, automobile, general engineering and fabrication sectors
  • It is the first integrated steel plant to be certified for ISO 9001-2008, ISO 14001-2004 and OHSAS 18001:2007 standards

6)   Sprinter Srabani Nanda won which prize for sporting excellence on 8th Oct 2016?

a. Ekalavya
b. Ekalabya
c. Ekadisha
d. Ekadashi
Answer  Explanation 

ANSWER: Ekalabya

Sprinter Srabani Nanda on Oct 8 2016 won the 24th Ekalabya Award for 2016 in recognition of her sporting excellence.

  • She is an Indian woman sprint runner athlete from Odisha specialised in 4x100m relay, 100m and 200m sprint events
  • She belongs to the Odisha district Kandhmal
  • She qualified for the Rio Olympics in the 200m women’s category
  • Srabani won gold in 200m, silver in 100m and 4x100m relay at the 12th South Asian Games in Guwahati in February 2016
  • She won bronze in the 100m and 4x100m relay in the Asian Grand Prix Athletics in Thailand in 2015
  • Ekalabya award is instituted in the year 1993 by the Indian metals Public Charitable Trust of the IMFA group of companies
  • It is given annually to young sportspersons of Odisha in recognition of their outstanding performance in the preceding two years
  • It was instituted to promote, encourage and recognise Odia sports personalities in the State.

7)   Russia on Oct 8, 2016 vetoed a UNSC Draft resolution demanding an end to bombing in which Syrian city?

a. Ramallah
b. Damascus
c. Tartus
d. Aleppo
Answer  Explanation 

ANSWER: Aleppo

Russia on Oct 8 2016 vetoed a UNSC draft resolution demanding the end to the city of Aleppo’s bombing in Syria.

  • Draft text proposed by France and Spain won 11 votes in favour, Russia and Venezuela voted against the resolution while China and Angola refrained
  • This marks the fifth time the Russian nation has used a veto to block UN action to end the 5 year war in Syria
  • The United Nations estimates that Syrian conflict has driven more than 4.8 million refugees to neighbouring nations, hundreds of thousands in Europe and displaced 6.6 million people inside the Syria against the pre-war population of more than 20 million
  • The war has claimed at least 200,000 lives
  • French foreign minister Jean Marc Ayrault urged the UNSC to take steps to save Aleppo from being destroyed by the Russia backed Syrian bombing campaign
  • Russia presented its own draft text that urged for separation of moderate and extremist forces in Syria yet made no mention of the halt to the bombing go Aleppo
  • Draft failed to get support of 9 full votes- text received 4 votes in favour, 9 against and 2 abstentions
  • Russia’s introduction of a rival resolution took Western supporters of the French draft by surprise