Current Affairs Questions & Answers - Sep 18, 2016

1)   MoEF has announced next generation sustainable technologies for which HFC releasing object?

a. Fridge
b. Perfume spray
c. Air conditioners
d. Both a and c
Answer  Explanation 

ANSWER: Both a and c

Environment ministry on 15th Sept 2016 announced an ambitious collaborative programme for R&D to develop next generation sustainable refrigerant technologies.

  • These are alternatives to climate damaging hydrofluorocarbons
  • This announcement came a day before International Ozone Day on 16th Sept
  • Announcement concerns HFC which is however, not an ozone depleting chemical like other refrigerants
  • But HFC has a huge potential to damage the climate and it is important to fight the adverse impact of climate change
  • Announcement indicates India’s commitment to phase down HFC by taking domestic industries on board so refrigerant sector does not get affected till cost effective cutting edge technology is available for HFC
  • HFC is released by Acs, fridges and insulating foam
  • Countries from across the globe will meet in Rwanda to phase down HFC as part of amendment to a Montreal Protocol
  • Montreal Protocol indicates that phasing down of HCFCs and CFCs is imperative; it does not consider non ozone depleting substances like HFC
  • Cutting down on HFC is to avoid 0.5 degree C warming towards the close of the 21st century and diminishing emission of dangerous GHG
  • BSIR , DST and allied institution Centre for Atmospheric & Oceanic Sciences and key industry players in the refrigerant sector will be part of this initiative
  • India already has a small carbon footprint at citizen level and this research can prevent patented expensive and polluting technologies from being used

2)   Memory of which disease gets stored in genes through epigenetic changes?

a. Cancer
b. Jaundice
c. Heart attack
d. None of the above
Answer  Explanation 

ANSWER: Heart attack

Memory of a heart attack gets stored in the genes through epigenetic changes, chemical modifications of DNA that turn genes off or on according to a study.

  • CVDs or cardiovascular diseases are the leading cause of death worldwide- these are influenced by environmental and hereditary factors
  • CVD includes diseases of heart and circulation including CHD, angina, heart attack, congenital heart disease and stroke
  • Study examined epigenetic changes leading to the development of numerous diseases, in people who have had a previous heart attack
  • During the heart attack, the signals of the body are activating certain genes- mechanism protects the tissue during the acute stages of the disease and restores the body after the heart attack- epigenetic changes are also associated with a heart attack- according to Asa Johansson, researcher at Sweden’s Uppsala University
  • Results of the study show many epigenetic changes in individuals who experienced a heart attack
  • This points to the possibility of understanding heart attacks in a complete clinical picture and revolutionising treatment.

3)   Who wrote Who’s Afraid of Virginia Woolf, a Tony award winning masterpiece?

a. Edward Albee
b. Edward Thomas
c. Edward Melby
d. Edward Mellory
Answer  Explanation 

ANSWER: Edward Albee

Albee’s best known work Who’s Afraid of Virginia Woolf? won the Tony Pulitzer Award.

  • He died at the age of 88 in Montauk, NYC after a short illness. He underwent extensive surgery and succumbed after that
  • He is considered one of the most important American playwrights of his time
  • He wrote controversial and intense plays detailing anxiety, disillusionment and death
  • He burst into theatre setting with The Zoo Story(1958)
  • This two character drama showcasing class struggle and disaffection premiered in Berlin in 1959 and went on to Off Broadway in 1960
  • Who’s Afraid of Virginia Woolf debates two years later on Broadway and the drunken description of tortured couple George and Martha was even made into a black comedy film in 1966 by Mike Nichols starring Richard Burton and Elizabeth Taylor
  • Taylor won the best actress award for this play at the Oscars
  • Albee won 3 Pulitzer prices for best drama
  • 1967 for a A Delicate Balance made into a 1973 film starring Katherine Hepburn and Paul Scofield
  • Seascape in 1975
  • Three Tall Women in 1994
  • He also won the Special Tony Award for Lifetime Achievement.
  • He started his career in NY’s Greenwich Village where he found a more sympathetic environment in the avante garde scene.

4)   Belgium has legalised euthanasia for minors in which year?

a. 2002
b. 2012
c. 2011
d. 2014
Answer  Explanation 

ANSWER: 2014

Euthanasia or mercy killing is legal in Belgium since 2002. The nation amended its rules to permit doctor assisted death in 2014.

  • 17 year old has been euthanised in Belgium in what was the first application of rules adopted by the country in 2014 allowing mercy killing for minors of all ages by doctors
  • Wim Distelmans chairing the Belgium’s Federal Control and Evaluation Committee on Euthanasia, said in an e-mailed statement that the first case was reported to his committee by a local doctor
  • Belgium is currently the only country in the world permitting euthanasia for minors of all ages
  • In the Netherlands a neighbouring country, practice is legal for children aged at least 12
Belgian law allows doctor assisted death for minors under strict conditions:
  • The authorisation of parents is needed
  • Psychologists or psychiatrists must be consulted
  • Minors must be conscious and rational at the time of choosing euthanasia
  • To undergo euthanasia, the minor must also be in a “terminal medical situation with constant and unbearable physical pain which cannot be assuaged and that will cause death in the short term,” the law says.
  • Between 2003 and 2013, the number of patients euthanised in Belgium was 8752
  • Twelve years after legalising euthanasia for adults, Belgian parliament extended the right to die to terminally ill children of any age in 2014
  • The ground-breaking legislation was adopted by 86 votes in favour, 44 against and with 12 abstentions. Belgium is one of three countries in Europe to allow euthanasia for adults.
  • The law offers the possibility of euthanasia to children “in a hopeless medical situation of constant and unbearable suffering that cannot be eased.”

5)   Which ISIL trafficking survivor became the first to be appointed a UNODC Goodwill Ambassador?

a. Nadia Murad Basee Taha
b. Shaista Murad Basee Taha
c. Waheeda Murad Basee Taha
d. None of the above
Answer  Explanation 

ANSWER: Nadia Murad Basee Taha

In what is the first time a survivor of atrocities has been bestowed with the honour, Nadia Murad Basee Taha who survived ISIL trafficking on Sept 16, 2016 was appointed UNODC (United Nations Office on Drugs and Crime) Goodwill Ambassador for the Dignity of Survivors of Human Trafficking.

  • During her ambassadorship, Nadia will focus on advocacy initiatives and raise awareness about victims of trafficking especially refugees, women and girls
  • Murad is a 23-year-old Yazidi who was kidnapped and held by IS in August 2014
  • She briefed the Security Council in what is the first ever session on human trafficking held during the presidency of the US on 16th Dec 2015
  • She described being rounded up in Iraq in 2014 and witnessing ISIL fighters shoot men and boys in cold blood
  • She was subject to grave abuses by ISIL fighters and bought as well as sold in several markets
  • She was recently named in the Time Magazine’s 100 Most Influential People of 2016
  • On January 5, 2016, Iraqi government nominated her for 2016 Nobel Peace Prize for her activism
  • She was also nominated for the Sakharov Prize for Freedom of Thought on 15th Sept 2016

6)   Name India’s most advanced guided missile destroyer second ship of Project 15B launched on 17th Sept?

a. Mormugao
b. Mamargao
c. Marmagoa
d. Marmagao
Answer  Explanation  Related Ques

ANSWER: Mormugao

A significant milestone in indigenous warship design and construction in India was attained with the launch of the most advanced guided missile destroyer Mormugao at the MDL dock in Mumbai

  • This is the second ship of Project 15B and has a launch weigh of 2844 tonnes
  • It was created through a partnership between MDL, India Navy, DRDO, OFB, BEL PSUs and private industry. In ensuring force levels are made to meet India’s national strategic objectives
  • Project 15B featured cutting edge advanced technology and compares to the best ships of similar class anywhere in the world
  • Ships have been indigenously designed by the Directorate of Naval Design
  • Each ship spans 163 metres in length and 17.4 metres in beam and displaces 7300 tonnes
  • Ship will be propelled by four gas turbines to achieve speeds in excess of 30 knots
  • P15B destroyers incorporate new design concepts for stealth, sea keeping, improved survivability and ship manoeuvrability
  • Shore, sea and air targets can be tracked by the ship
  • These ships can truly be classified as possessing a Network of Networks, as they are equipped with Integrated Platform Management System (IPMS), Ship Data Network (SDN), Automatic Power Management System (APMS) and Combat Management System (CMS).
  • While control and monitoring of machinery and auxiliaries is achieved through the IPMS, power management is done using the APMS.
  • The CMS performs threat evaluation and resource allocation based on the tactical picture compiled and ammunition available onboard. The SDN is the information highway on which data from all the sensors and weapons ride.
  • The ship’s “fire power” consists of sophisticated weapons-sensor suite including vertically launched Surface to Air Missiles (SAM) and Surface-to-Surface Missiles (SSM) for long distance engagement of shore and sea based targets.

7)   Three world records were set to celebrate the 66th birthday of India’s PM Narendra Modi. These include:

a. Lighting the most earthen lamps in 30 seconds
b. 1000 differently abled persons making the largest wheelchair logo at a single venue
c. Both of the above
d. Neither of the above
Answer  Explanation 

ANSWER: Both of the above

Three world records were held at two events to celebrate the 66th birthday of PM Narendra Modi at Navsari in south Gujarat.

  • One record was that most persons (989) lighted earthen lamps or diyas within 30 seconds
  • Another record was that 1000 differently abled persons made a formation of a logo saying Happy Birthday PM, which was the largest wheelchair logo in the world.
  • Another record was 1700 deaf persons being distributed 3400 hearing aid machines in one place
  • The records were made in the presence of reps of the Guinness Book of World Records

8)   Which is the latest NAM summit to be held in Venezuela on September 17-18?

a. 16th
b. 18th
c. 19th
d. 17th
Answer  Explanation  Related Ques

ANSWER: 17th

The important 17th NAM Summit was held in Margarita Island in Venezuela from Sept 17 to 18.
NAM summit on 17th makes the second time PM of India will not be representing the nation at the summit.

  • India was one of the founding members of the Non Aligned Movement
  • It hosted the 7th NAM Summit in 1983 in New Delhi
  • Last NAM summit was held in Iran in 2012
  • “The Summit is expected to deliberate on issues of contemporary relevance and concern such as terrorism, UN reform, the situation in West Asia, threats to peace and security, UN peacekeeping operations, climate change, and sustainable development,” stated a press release by the Ministry of External Affairs.
  • NAM is a group of states not formally aligned or against major power blogs
  • Organisation was founded in Belgrade in 1961 and largely conceived by India’s first PM Nehru
Others who founded NAM include:
  • Indonesia’s first president, Sukarno;
  • Egypt’s second president, Gamal Abdel Nasser;
  • Ghana’s first president Kwame Nkrumah;
  • Yugoslavia’s president, Josip Broz Tito.
  • All these leaders emphasised the middle course for states in developing part of the world in the cold war between Western and Eastern Blocs.
  • As of 2012, NAM has 120 members