DAILY WISDOM TEST-PT QUEST 2020

DAILY WISDOM TEST-PT QUEST 2020 (29 MAY)

Q.1 Which of the following is/are part of money supply?

(1)Cash with the public
(2)Deposits of public in banks
(3)Shares held by public
Select the correct answer using the code given below:
(a)1 only
(b)1 and 2 only
(c)2 & 3 only
(d)All of the above
ANSWER.

Q.2 Consider the following statements:

(a) USA has the second largest gold reserve in the world
(b) India is among the top 10 countries holding gold reserves
Select the correct answer using the code given below:
(1) 1 only
(2) 2 only
(3) Both 1 & 2
(4) Neither 1 nor 2
ANSWER.

Q.3 Which of the following statements regarding an economy facing cyclical unemployment is CORRECT?

(a) Cyclical unemployment leads to inflation in economy.
(b) This is a situation in which a person is employed but not in desired capacity.
(c) It can be tackled through expansionary monetary policy
(d) It can be tackled through contractionary fiscal policy.
ANSWER.

Q.4 Which of the following statements in the context of locust swarms is INCORRECT?

(a) Desert locusts normally live and breed in semi-arid/desert regions.
(b) Their ideal ground for breeding in India is in Rajasthan than in the Indo-Gangetic plains or Godavari and Cauvery delta
(c) There are two meteorological drivers behind the current locust invasions: one, unseasonal heavy rains in the main spring-breeding tracts in March-April, and, two, strong westerly winds.
(d) Only African and Asian Continents are affected by the desert swarms
ANSWER.

Q.5 Which of the following geographical areas/countries is/are not considered as the main locust breeding areas in the world?

(1) The Horn of Africa
(2) Sudan
(3) Yemen and Oman
(4) Southern Iran
(5) India-Pakistan border
Select the correct answer using the code given below:
(a) 2 only
(b) 2 and 5 only
(c) 1, 3 and 4 only
(d) None of the above
ANSWER.

DAILY WISDOM TEST-PT QUEST 2020 (28 MAY)

Q.1 Which of the following statements regarding Incremental Capital Output Ratio (ICOR) is INCORRECT?

(a)It shows how efficiently capital is being used to produce output
(b)It is the extra unit of capital required to produce one additional unit of output
(c) It is the extra unit of output produced from one additional unit of capital
(d)It is the ratio of change in capital to change in output
ANSWER. OPTION (C)
Explanation: Incremental Capital Output Ratio (ICOR) is defined as:-
ICOR=(change in capital)/(Change in output) =(Investment % in GDP)/(% Change in GDP)
ICOR represents how much extra unit of capital is required to produce one additional unit of output.

Q.2 Which of the following statements is CORRECT regarding “Line of Credit”:

(a) It is issued by one bank to another
(b) It is issued mainly in case of international transactions
(c) It is a preset amount of money that a bank has agreed to lend
(d) The company will have to pay interest on the amount for which line of credit has been issued
ANSWER.OPTION (C)
Explanation: A line of credit is a preset amount of money that a bank has agreed to lend to a company or individual. The company or individual can draw from the line of credit when it needs up to the maximum amount. The company or individual will pay interest only on the amount used.

Q.3 The Fifteenth Finance Commission (FC) has considered which of the following parameters to arrive at the states’ share in the divisible pool of taxes?

(1) Tax Effort
(2) Area
(3) Income Distance
(4) Demographic performance
Select the correct answer code:
(a) 1, 2, 3, 4
(b) 1, 2, 3
(c) 2, 3, 4
(d)1, 3, 4
ANSWER. 

Q.4 Which of the following statements is INCORRECT regarding the terms of reference ( ToR ) of the Finance Commission?

(a) The terms of reference get its mandate as per the provisions of the Constitution
(b) The Finance Commission’s main terms of reference have been mentioned in the Constitution
(c) The additional terms of reference are assigned by the Parliament
(d) The terms of reference determine the scope of recommendations of the Finance Commission
ANSWER. OPTION (C)
Explanation
a) CORRECT: The terms of reference get its mandate as per the provisions of the Constitution
b) CORRECT: The Finance Commission’s main terms of reference have been mentioned in the Constitution- As per Article 280, the three main TOR mentioned
c) INCORRECT: The additional terms of reference are assigned by Presidential order, NOT by the Parliament
d) CORRECT: The terms of reference determine the scope of recommendations of the Finance Commission

COMMENT: The Q 1 & 2 are basic concept-hence, you should not have attempted wrong. Q3 attempting wrong is suicidal. Q4. Demanded polity oriented constitutional understanding.

THE SOURCE FOR Q4. FC OFFICIAL WEBSITE- fincomindia.nic.in (The following content is original from the website without editing)
2. In addition to provisions enabling transfer of resources from the Centre to the States, a distinguishing feature of the Indian Constitution is that it provides for an institutional mechanism to facilitate such transfers. The institution assigned with such a task under Article 280 of the Constitution is the Finance Commission, which is to be appointed at the expiration of every five years or earlier. UNDER THE CONSTITUTION, THE MAIN RESPONSIBILITIES of a Finance Commission are the following.
1. The distribution between the Union and the States of the net proceeds of taxes which are to be divided between them and the allocation between the
States of the respective shares of such proceeds.
2. Determination of principles and quantum of grants-in-aid to States which are in need of such assistance.
3. Measures needed to augment the Consolidated Fund of a State to supplement the resources of the Panchayats and Municipalities in the State on the basis of
the recommendations made by the Finance Commission of the State.

3. The last function was added following the 73rd and 74th amendments to the Constitution in 1992 conferring statutory status to the Panchayats and Municipalities. These Constitutionally mandated functions are the same for all the Finance Commissions and mentioned as such in the terms of reference (ToR) of different Finance Commissions.
TERMS OF REFERENCE
27. As indicated earlier, the three constitutionally mandated responsibilities of a Finance Commission are the distribution between the Union and the States of the net proceeds of shareable Central taxes, determining the grants to States which are in need of assistance and recommending measures to augment the Consolidated Fund of a State to supplement the resources of local bodies. These are mentioned as such in the Presidential Order constituting a Finance Commission. In addition to the substantive functions, any other matter can be referred to a FINANCE COMMISSION IN THE INTEREST OF SOUND FINANCE UNDER ARTICLE 280 (3) (d) OF THE CONSTITUTION. It has become customary to mention certain considerations in the Presidential Order appointing a Commission, which the Commission may consider, among others, while making its recommendations. The Presidential Order listing out the main functions, additional matters and considerations constitutes the ToR of a Finance Commission. In fact, the First Finance Commission was not given any ToR. It proceeded with its work based on the substantive duties enumerated in the Constitution.

DAILY WISDOM TEST-PT QUEST 2020 (27 MAY)

Q.1 Consider the following statements in the context of Budget 2020 which laid emphasis on making India a $ 5 Trillion economy by 2024:

(1)This $ 5 Trillion, will be measured as value of real GDP.
(2) In terms of nominal GDP India is the sixth largest economy of the world (as of 2019).
(3) To achieve the target India need a real GDP Growth of 8% with inflation controlled under 4 %.
Select the correct answer using the code given below:
(a)1 Only
(b)2 and 3 Only
(c)2 Only
(d)3 Only
ANSWER. OPTION (D)
Explanation:
Essentially $5-trillion economy is the size of an economy as measured by the annual Gross Domestic Product (GDP). The focus of plans will be on boosting services sector contribution to $ 3 trillion, manufacturing to $ 1 trillion and Agriculture to $ 1 trillion. At present Nominal GDP of India is $ 2.93 Trillion Dollars making it the 5th largest Economy in the world. (Ref. IMF-2019 estimates). To become $ 5 Trillion by 2024, India needs 12% Nominal GDP Growth (if Inflation is contained under 4%, then Real GDP Growth required will be 8 %.
Hence Statements 1 and 2 are INCORRECT, and only statement 3 is CORRECT.

Q.2 Of the following, which statement describes the best the term ‘legal tender money’

(a) The currency which is under circulation.
(b) The bank money in the form of cheques, drafts, etc.
(c) Money which is acceptable by law, and no one can refuse to accept
(d) Money which has an intrinsic value.
ANSWER.OPTION (B)
Explanation: Every currency note bears on its face a promise from the Governor of RBI that if someone produces the note to RBI, or any other commercial bank, RBI will be responsible for giving the person purchasing power equal to the value printed on the note. The same is also true of coins. They are also called legal tenders as they cannot be refused by any citizen of the country for settlement of any kind of transaction.
There is no complete definition in the options, so we need to choose most suitable, which is C, as legal tender is acceptable by law, which no one can refuse to accept.

Q.3 Consider the following statements regarding the “Monetary Policy” followed by RBI:

(1) It follows flexible inflation target
(2) While inflation is in control, RBI can focus on growth
(3) Financial Stability is the explicit mandate of monetary policy
(4) The RBI determines the inflation target
Select the correct answer using the code given below:
(a) 1 and 3 only
(b) 1 and 2 only
(c) 2 and 4 only
(d)1, 3 and 4 only
ANSWER. OPTION (B)
Explanation:
RBI follows flexible inflation target of 4% +/- 2%. The RBI Act says “primary objective of the monetary policy is to maintain price stability while keeping in mind the objective of growth”. It means that if inflation is in control, RBI can focus on economic growth of the country and can reduce the repo rate. The explicit mandate of monetary policy is price stability and not financial stability. Alone monetary policy cannot ensure financial stability as there are other factors involved in bringing financial stability.

Q.4 Consider the following statements:

(1)The boundary between India and Nepal is largely an outcome of Treaty of Sugauli.
(2) It was signed between the British Crown and the Kingdom of Nepal.
(3) According to the treaty, the region west of Kali river belongs to India.
(4) The Treaty mentions source of Kali river near Limpiyadhura.
Which of the above statement is/are correct?
(a) 1, 3 and 4
(b) 1, 2 and 3
(c) 1 and 3
(d) All of them
ANSWER.OPTION (C)
Explanation:
1. Statement 1 is correct: The boundary between India and Nepal is largely an outcome of Treaty of Sugauli, which was signed in December 1815 and ratified in March 1816.
2. Statement 2 is incorrect: It was signed between the East India Company and the Kingdom of Nepal after the end of the Anglo-Nepalese War (1814-1816) where Nepal lost one-third of its territory to them.
3. Statement 3 is correct: As per the Article V of the Sugauli Treaty, ‘west of the Kali river’ belongs to India.
4. Statement 4 is incorrect: The treaty fails to mention the source of Kali (Sharda/Mahakali) river which has become the bone of contention between the two countries. It has led to competing claims over Kalapani territory between India and Nepal.

Q.5 Consider the following statements:

(1) Recently the Government of Nepal has unveiled a new political map of Nepal placing the disputed territories of Kalapani, Limpiyadhura and Lipulekh as part of their territory.
(2) Nepal claims that the source of Kali river lies at Limpiyadhura, hence the Kalapani and Lipulekh in the west of Kali river belongs to Nepal.
(3) At present, Kalapani territory and Lipulekh is controlled by Sashastra Seem Bal.
Which of the above statements is/are correct?
(a) 1 only
(b) 1 and 2
(c) 1 and 3
(d) All of them
ANSWER. OPTION (A)
Explanation:
1. Statement 1 is correct: Recently, the Government of Nepal has unveiled a new political map of Nepal placing the disputed territories of Kalapani, Limpiyadhura and Lipulekh as part of their territory. This has created tensions between India-Nepal relations. Kalapani and Lipulekh lies at tri-junction of India, Nepal and China and thus geopolitically important for both India and Nepal.
2. Statement 2 is incorrect: Nepal claims that the source of Kali river lies at Limpiyadhura, hence the Kalapani and Lipulekh in the east of Kali river belongs to Nepal.
3. Statement 3 is incorrect: Since the Indo-China war of 1962, Kalapani is controlled by India’s Indo-Tibetan Border Police.

DAILY WISDOM TEST-PT QUEST 2020 (26 MAY)

Q.1 If a country is experiencing recession then which of the following shall be true?

(a)Decrease in real GDP
(b) Decrease in nominal GDP
(c) Decrease in rate of growth of GDP
(d) All of the above
ANSWER.OPTION (A)
Explanation:
When the “real GDP” decreases or “change in real GDP” is negative then it is a case of recession. Recession refers to a phase of the downturn in the economic cycle when there is a fall in the country’s GDP for some quarters. A common rule of thumb for recessions is two quarters of negative GDP growth.

Q.2 If a country has ‘Pegged’ exchange rate, then consider the following statements:

(1) Inflation in the country may make its exports less competitive
(2) If the country devalues its currency in proportion to the inflation then its exports may remain competitive.
Select the correct answer using the code given below:
(a) 1 only
(b) 2 only
(c) Both 1 & 2
(d) Neither 1 nor 2
ANSWER.OPTION (C)
Explanation:
Pegged exchange rate means a country fixes its exchange rate with another country currency or a basket of currencies and when required changes it accordingly.

Q.3 Consider the following statements regarding an economy facing deflation:

(1) Companies defer their investments
(2) People defer their expenditures.
(3) Demand decreases
(4) Unemployment increases
Select the correct answer using the code given below:
(a) 1 & 2 only
(b) 3 only
(c) 3 & 4 only
(d)All of the above
ANSWER.OPTION (D)
Explanation:
When the economy is facing deflation, that means prices are decreasing. In such a situation, whatever a consumer can buy today in Rs. 1000, the same Rs. 1000 is able to purchase more in the next year. This leads to postponement of purchase decisions by the people and the demand in the economy decreases. When the demand decreases, companies defer their production and investment decisions which lead to increase in unemployment. So, all the statements are correct.

Q.4 Consider the following statements:

(1)Kali river originates at Kalapani in Uttarakhand.
(2) It is tributary of Ganga river.
(3) Pancheshwar Multipurpose Project is to be developed on Kali river in Nepal with the help of India.
Which of the above statements is/are correct?
(a) 1 only
(b) 1 and 3
(c) 1 and 2
(d) All of them
ANSWER. OPTION (B)
Explanation:
• Statement 1 is correct: Kali river (also called as Mahakali or Sharda river) originates at Kalapani in the Himalayas at an elevation of 3,600 m in the Pithoragarh district in Uttarakhand.
• Statement 2 is incorrect: It flows along Nepal’s western border with India and joins Karnali river (Ghaghra River) at Brahmaghat in India. Ghagra river is tributary of Ganga river.
• Statement 3 is correct: Pancheshwar Multipurpose Project (PMP) is a bi-national hydropower project to be developed in Mahakali River bordering Nepal and India. Also, Tanakpur Hydroelectric Project is commissioned in Uttarakhand across Sharda river.

Q.5 Consider the following rivers:

(1) Sutlej
(2) Brahmaputra
(3) Indus
(4) Chenab
(5) Ghaghara
Which of the above rivers has its origin near Mansarovar Lake?
(a) 1, 2 and 3
(b) 1, 2, 3 and 4
(c) 1 and 2
(d) 1, 2, 3, and 5
ANSWER.OPTION (D)
Explanation:
• Lake Manasarovar is near the source of the Sutlej, which is the easternmost large tributary of the Indus. Nearby are the sources of the Brahmaputra River, the Indus River, and the Ghaghara, an important tributary of the Ganges.
• Chenab river rises in the upper Himalayas in the Lahaul and Spiti district of Himachal Pradesh state.

DAILY WISDOM TEST-PT QUEST 2020 (19 MAY)

Q.1 Consider the following statements about PM JI-VAN Scheme.

(1)Ministry of Petroleum & Natural Gas has targeted to achieve 15% blending percentage of Ethanol in petrol by 2024.
(2)The policy allows procurement of ethanol produced from molasses and non-food feed stock like celluloses and lignocelluloses material including petrochemical route.
Which of the above statements is/are correct?
(a)1 Only
(b) 2 Only
(c) Both 1 and 2
(d) Neither 1 nor 2
ANSWER.(B)
Explanation: PM JI-VAN Scheme 2019
1. Statement-1 is incorrect: Ministry of Petroleum & Natural Gas has targeted to achieve 10% blending percentage of Ethanol in petrol by 2022.
2. Statement-2 is correct: Under EBP programme, Oil Marketing Companies (OMCs) are to blend upto 10% of ethanol in Petrol. The present policy allows procurement of ethanol produced from molasses and non-food feed stock like celluloses and lignocelluloses material including petrochemical route.
3. Under this Yojana, 12 Commercial Scale and 10 demonstration scale Second Generation (2G) ethanol Projects will be provided a Viability Gap Funding (VGF) support in two phases:
a) Phase-I (2018-19 to 2022-23): wherein six commercial projects and five demonstration projects will be supported.
b) Phase-II (2020-21 to 2023-24): wherein remaining six commercial projects and five demonstration projects will be supported.
4. The scheme focuses to incentivise 2G Ethanol sector and support this nascent industry by creating a suitable ecosystem for setting up commercial projects and increasing Research & Development in this area.

Q.2 Consider the following statements regarding Solar Risk Mitigation Initiative (SRMI).

(1) Solar Risk Mitigation Initiative (SRMI) is developed by International Energy Agency to address the challenge of climate financing.
(2) SRMI aims to support countries in developing sustainable solar programs that will attract private investments and so reduce reliance on public finance
(3) It provides technical assistance to help countries develop evidence-based solar targets and implement a sustainable solar program.
Which of the above statements is/are correct?
(a) 1 and 2
(b) 2 and 3
(c) 1 and 3
(d) 1,2 and 3
ANSWER.OPTION (B)
Explanation: The World Bank– Energy Sector Management Assistance Program (WB-ESMAP), in partnership with, Agence Française de Développement (AFD), International Renewable Energy Agency (IRENA) and International Solar Alliance (ISA) developed the Solar Risk Mitigation Initiative (SRMI or “the Initiative”) to address these challenges. This unique approach offers development and climate financing for: (i) technical assistance to help countries develop evidence-based solar targets, implement a sustainable solar program, and maintain robust procurement processes with transaction advisors; (ii) critical public investments to enable integration of variable renewable energy (VRE), finance solar park infrastructure, and increase access to electricity ; and (iii) risk mitigation instruments to cover residu¬al risks perceived by private investors.

Q.3 Consider the following statements about Hybrid Annuity Model (HAM).

(1) It is a new form of BOT Annuity model.
(2) The government will contribute 60% of the project cost in the first five years through annual payments.
(3) There is no right to collect toll for the developer.
Which of the above statements is/are correct?
(a) 1 and 2 only
(b) 2 and 3 only
(c) 3 only
(d)1 and 3 only
ANSWER.(C)
Explanation:
1. HAM’s a hybrid — a mix of the EPC (engineering, procurement and construction) and BOT (build, operate, transfer) models. Under the EPC model, NHAI pays private players to lay roads. The private player has no role in the road’s ownership, toll collection or maintenance (it is taken care of by the government).
2. Under the BOT model though, private players have an active role — they build, operate and maintain the road for a specified number of years — say 10-15 years — before transferring the asset back to the government.
3. Under BOT, the private player arranged all the finances for the project, while collecting toll revenue or annuity fee from the Government, as agreed. The annuity fee arrangement is known as BOT-Annuity; essentially, the toll revenue risk is taken by the government, while the private player is paid a pre-fixed annuity for construction and maintenance of roads.
4. Now, HAM combines EPC (40 per cent) and BOT-Annuity (60 per cent). On behalf of the government, NHAI releases 40 per cent of the total project cost. It is given in five tranches linked to milestones. The balance 60 per cent is arranged by the developer. Here, the developer usually invests not more than 20-25 per cent of the project cost (as against 40 percent or more before), while the remaining is raised as debt.

Q.4 Consider the following statements

(1)Rainfall occur in summer and winter is dry.
(2) The wet season is shorter and the dry season is longer.
(3) Temperature is high throughout the year and diurnal ranges of temperature are the greatest in the dry season.
(4) Deciduous forest and tree-shredded grasslands occur in this climate.
Identify the climatic region from above information as classified by Koeppen and choose the correct code below:
(a) Am
(b) Af
(c) Aw
(d) BSh
ANSWER.OPTION (C).
Explanation:
1. Am: It is Tropical Monsoon Climate. Heavy rainfall occurs mostly in summer. Winter is dry. It is found over the Indian sub-continent, North Eastern part of South America and Northern Australia.
2. Af: It is Tropical Wet Climate. Tropical wet climate is found near the equator. Significant amount of rainfall occurs in every month of the year as thunder showers in the afternoon. The temperature is uniformly high and the annual range of temperature is negligible. Tropical evergreen forests with dense canopy cover and large biodiversity.
3. Aw: It is Tropical Wet and Dry Climate. Tropical wet and dry climate occurs north and south of Af type climate regions. Rainfall occur in summer a nd winter is dry. The wet season is shorter and the dry season is longer.
4. BSh: It is Sub-tropical Steppe climate. Located in the transition zone between humid and dry climates, subtropical steppe receives slightly more rainfall than the desert, adequate enough for the growth of sparse grasslands. The annual and diurnal ranges of temperature are also high. (Note: B type climates are of dry regions of world.)

DAILY WISDOM TEST-PT QUEST 2020 (18 MAY)

Q.1 Consider the following statements about e-NAM (National Agricultural Market):

(1)Small Farmers’ Agribusiness Consortium (SFAC) is the lead promoter of NAM.
(2)One license for a trader is valid across all markets in the country.
(3)Rajasthan has the highest number of APMCs integrated under e-NAM.
Which of the above statements is/are correct?
(a)1 Only
(b) 2 and 3 Only
(c) 1 and 3 Only
(d) 2 Only
ANSWER.(C)
Explanation: National Agriculture Market or e-NAM is an online trading platform for agricultural commodities in India. The e-NAM is linked with 1000 markets (APMCs) in 18 states and 3 union territories. Top five states with highest number of APMCs linked with e-NAM are Rajasthan (144), Uttar Pradesh (125), Gujarat (122), Maharashtra (118), and Madhya Pradesh (80).
Small Farmers’ Agribusiness Consortium (SFAC) is the lead promoter of NAM. SFAC is a registered society of the Department of Agriculture, Cooperation & Farmers’ Welfare (DAC&FW) under the Ministry of Agriculture and Farmer Welfare.
Under e-NAM once license for a trader is valid throughout the State. Hence statement 2 is incorrect.

Q.2 Consider the following statements about District Mineral Foundations:

(1) DMFs were instituted under the Mines and Minerals (Development and Regulation) (MMDR) Amendment Act 2015 as non-profit trusts to work for the interest and benefit of persons and areas affected by mining-related operations.
(2) Major objective of DMFs is to minimize the impact of mining on environment health and socio-economic conditions of people living in mining area.
(3) 60% of the contribution of DMFs is given by the miners and rest by the respective states.
Which of the above statements are correct?
(a) 1 and 2 Only
(b) 2 and 3 Only
(c) 1 and 3 Only
(d) 1, 2 and 3
ANSWER.OPTION (A)
Explanation:
District Mineral Foundation (DMF) is a trust set up as a non-profit body, in those districts affected by the mining works, to work for the interest and benefit of persons and areas affected by mining related operations. It is funded through the contributions from miners. (Hence statement 3 is incorrect)

Q.3 Consider the following statements about National Anti-profiteering Authority (NAA)

(1) The Authority’s main function is to ensure that traders are not realizing unfair profit by charging high price from consumers in the name of GST.
(2) The Finance Secretary is the head of NAA
(3) The GST law also provides for the creation of a Consumer Welfare Fund wherein undue benefits made by businesses under the GST law have to be deposited, in case it cannot be passed on to the identified recipient.
Which of the above statements are correct?
(a) 1 and 2 only
(b) 2 and 3 only
(c) 1 and 3 only
(d)1, 2 and 3
ANSWER.(C)
Explanation: The National Anti-Profiteering Authority (NAA) has been constituted under Section 171 of the Central Goods and Services Tax Act, 2017.
The Authority’s main function is to ensure that traders are not realizing unfair profit by charging high price from consumers in the name of GST.
NAA is headed by a chairman appointed by the Appointment Committee of the Cabinet which is headed by the Prime Minister (Hence statement 2 is incorrect)

Q.4 Consider the following

(a)Saffron Heritage of Kashmir
(b) Koraput Traditional Agriculture
(c) Traditional Ladakh Agriculture
(d) Kuttanad Below Sea Level Farming System
ANSWER.OPTION (D)
Explanation:
1. In 2002, the Food and Agriculture Organisation (FAO) of the United Nations launched an initiative called Globally Important Agriculture Heritage Systems (GIAHS). It aims to recognize, conserve and manage best agricultural biodiversity knowledge systems, food and livelihood security and cultures throughout the world.
2. FAO has accorded status of GIAHS to following three agriculture systems of India: 1. Saffron Heritage of Kashmir (in 2011) 2. Koraput Traditional Agriculture (in 2012) 3. Kuttanad Below Sea Level Farming System (in 2013)

DAILY WISDOM TEST-PT QUEST 2020 (16 MAY)

Q.1 Under the GST regime introduced since 2017, which of the following bodies/institutions has the mandate to recommend for the compensation amount to be paid to states in case of incurring revenue losses?

(a)The GST Council
(b) The Finance Commission
(c) The Ministry of Finance
(d) The Parliament
ANSWER. OPTION (A) The GST Council

Q.2 Under the GST regime introduced since 2017, which institution/body doesn’t have a role to play in the process of determining the compensation amount to states?

(a) The GST Council
(b) The Finance Commission
(c) The Comptroller and Auditor General of India
(d) The Parliament
ANSWER.OPTION (B) The Finance Commission

Q.3 Which of the following statements is/are NOT correct regarding the compensation amount paid to states in case of revenue losses under the GST regime?

(1) The revenue is collected through the GST Compensation Cess and is kept under GST Compensation Fund
(2) The GST Compensation Fund shall form part of the Consolidated Fund of India during the transition period
(3) The GST Compensation Cess is not applicable on imported goods
Select the correct answer using the code given below.
(a) 3 only
(b) 2 and 3 only
(c) 1 and 3 only
(d)1, 2 and 3
ANSWER.OPTION (B) The statement 2 and 3 are incorrect.

Q.4 Which of the following statement is correct regarding dispute resolution in cases of compensation amount paid to states?

(a) Any dispute related to compensation amount directly comes under the jurisdiction of the Supreme Court
(b) There is no provision for dispute resolution related to compensation amount under the GST regime
(c) The GST Council has been empowered under GST regime to devise a mechanism for dispute resolution
(d) The Union Finance Minister can introduce a resolution in the Parliament for taking a decision
ANSWER.OPTION (C) The GST Council has been empowered under GST regime to devise a mechanism for dispute resolution.

The general explanations for all four questions are as follows:

1. The 101st AA has the mandate for revenue loss compensation for states
2. Accordingly, there is a GST regime consisting of center and states laws of GST and other mechanism including the GST Council
3. For compensation of revenue loss to states, a separate law was enacted in 2017 which has mechanisms for compensating to states
4. This GST compensation law 2017 has
• Formula for compensation
• Method of calculation of revenue losses
• Provision for when to pay to states
• The compensation is given by a Cess imposed by the center on GST
• The revenue collected is kept in GST Compensation Fund
• This Fund becomes part of the Public Account of India for five years and NOT CFI
• After five years, 50% of this fund will go to CFI
5. The GST Council is empowered under the above law
• To give any recommendation on compensation
• Prepare rules as per GST compensation Act 2017 and place it on the floor of the Parliament-hence, parliament also plays a role
• Devise mechanisms for dispute resolution related to compensation amount
6. The revenue collected as per GST Cess is audited by the CAG, and hence the CAG also plays its role in ascertaining the revenue receipt
7. GST Cess is also applicable on imported goods in accordance with section 3 of the Customs Tariff Act, 1975.
NOTE: The Finance Commission has no role to play as per this GST regime. But the Govt can ask FC to look into GST regime, etc and give recommendations, e.g. The 15th FC TOR.

DAILY WISDOM TEST-PT QUEST 2020 (15 MAY)

Q.1 Which of the following statements is not appropriate in the context of economic policy planning and globalization?

(1)A Self-reliance approach is not against globalization
(2) A self-sufficiency approach is against globalization
Select the correct answer using the code given below.
(a)1 only
(b) 2 only
(c) Both 1 and 2
(d) Neither 1 nor 2
ANSWER. OPTION (B)

Q.2 Which of the following statements is not appropriate in the context of planning strategy adopted by India since Independence??

(1) Self-reliance became one of the most important objectives since the First FYP
(2) Self-sufficiency became a clearly defined objective during the Third FYP
(3) The economic liberalization of 1991 weakened self-reliance as a planning strategy
Select the correct answer using the code given below.
(a) 3 only
(b) 2 and 3 only
(c) 1, 2 and 3 only
(d) None of the above
ANSWER.OPTION (D)- All the three statements are correct It is obvious

Q.3 Which of the following is not correct about the NITI Aayog?

(a) It has been created by a Cabinet Resolution as the policy premier think tank of the government
(b) The Chief Executive Officer of NITI Aayog is appointed by the Prime Minister
(c) The Economic Advisory Council to the Prime Minister is office attached to NITI Aayog
(d)Its Vice-Chairman is appointed by the Union Cabinet
ANSWER.OPTION (D)- Read the cabinet resolution

Q.4 Which of the following term refers to tax planning strategies used by multinational enterprises that exploit gaps and mismatches in tax rules to avoid paying tax?

(a) Double taxation
(b) Base Erosion and Profit Shifting
(c) Deferment of tax
(d) Tax Haven
ANSWER. OPTION (B)
Explanation:
• Double Taxation: It arises when comparable taxes are imposed in two or more countries on the same taxpayer in respect of the same taxable income or capital e.g. where income is taxable in the source country and in the country of residence of the recipient of such income.
• Base Erosion and Profit Sharing: These are tax planning strategies employed by MNCs that exploit gaps and mismatches in tax rules to artificially shift profits to low or no-tax locations where there is little or no economic activity, resulting in little or no overall corporate tax being paid.
• Deferment of tax: It is the postponement of tax payments from the current year to a later year.
• Tax Haven: It refers to a country which imposes a low or no tax, and is used by corporations to avoid tax which otherwise would be payable in a high-tax country.

DAILY WISDOM TEST-PT QUEST 2020 (14 MAY)

Q.1 The First Five Year Plan in India was based on which of the following models?

(a)Gandhian Plan model
(b) The Harrod-Domar model
(c) Mahalanobis Plan model
(d) Peoples Plan model
ANSWER. OPTION (B)
EXPLANATION
a) Gandhian Plan model-suggested plan before independence
b) The Harrod-Domar model-FIRST FYP
c) Mahalanobis Plan model-SECOND FYP
d) Peoples Plan model- suggested plan before independence
The Harrod-Domar model focuses over estimation of saving, Investment, Capital-output ratio, long term objectives and short term national income projections etc.

Q.2 Which of the following is/are not among the considered functions of the NITI Aayog?

(1) Monitoring and evaluation of policies and programs
(2) Inter-state and inter-departmental conflict resolution
(3) Working as State’s Best Friend at the Centre
(4) Evolving a Shared National Agenda
Select the correct answer using the code given below.
(a) 2 only
(b) 2 and 3 only
(c) 1, 2 and 4 only
(d) None of the above
ANSWER. OPTIION (D)
EXPLANATION-all the four are the functions of the NITI Aayog
1. Monitoring and evaluation of policies and programs
2. Inter-state and inter-departmental conflict resolution
3. Working as State’s Best Friend at the Centre
4. Evolving a Shared National Agenda
Note: Largely people have confusion with NITI Aayog function as Inter-state and inter-departmental conflict resolution. You should know that it is about conflict resolution in the field of socio-economic planning which also includes coordination. It was also function of NDC in past. The ISC role is conflict resolution arising out of federal provisions of the constitution.

Q.3 Consider the following pairs

Five Year Plan Focus
(1) First FYP : Industrialization
(2) Second FYP : Agriculture
(3) Fourth FYP: Garibi Hatao
(4) Fifth FYP : Family Planning

Which of the following pairs given above are correctly matched?
(a) 3 and 4 only
(b) 1 and 2 only
(c) 1, 2, 3 and 4
(d)None of the above
ANSWER. OPTION (D)
EXPLANATION-all are incorrectly matched. The correct match is as follows:
Five Year Plan Focus
1. First FYP : Agriculture
2. Second FYP : Industrialization
3. Fourth FYP : Family Planning
4. Fifth FYP : Garibi Hatao

Note: First FYP was Agriculture based as you know all agrarian reforms and fist AA and schedule 9. Mahalanobis Plan model was adopted in second FYP with the IPR 1956.

Q.4 Which of the following statements is correct about the “Companies Fresh Start Scheme 2020” initiated to give relief to companies in the wake of COVID 19 ?

(a) It has been initiated by the Ministry of Finance
(b) It replaces the Limited Liability Partnerships (LLPs) scheme
(c) It gives longer timelines for corporates to comply with various filing requirements under the Companies Act 2013
(d) It doesn’t give immunity from penal proceedings for late submissions of filing requirements
ANSWER. OPTION (C)
EXPLANATION
a) INCORRECT- As it is by the Ministry of Corporate Affairs
a) INCORRECT: It DOESN’T replace the Limited Liability Partnerships (LLPs) scheme
b) CORRECT: It gives longer timelines for corporates to comply with various filing requirements under the Companies Act 2013
c) INCORRECT: As it does give immunity from penal proceedings for late submissions of filing requirements

DAILY WISDOM TEST-PT QUEST 2020 (13 MAY)

Q.1 Which of the following statement is CORRECT regarding the term ‘planning for social and economic development’ in the context of Indian Constitution?

(a)It remains even today an extra-constitutional term
(b) It is enumerated in the Concurrent List of Schedule 7
(c) The term was not originally instituted in the Constitution
(d) It was instituted in the Concurrent List of the Schedule 7 by 74th Amendment Act
ANSWER. OPTION (C)
Explanation:
a) INCORRECT: As it is now a constitutional term after 74th AA
b) INCORRECT: As it has been instituted in the Schedule 12 of the constitution
c) CORRECT: The term was not originally instituted in the Constitution
d) INCORRECT: As it has been instituted in the Schedule 12 of the constitution and NOT in the Concurrent List of the Schedule 7 by 74th Amendment Act
NOTE:
1. The term ‘economic and social planning’ was originally enumerated in the Concurrent List of the Schedule 7.
2. The 74th AA has not only instituted the term ‘planning for social and economic development’ in the Schedule 12 but also provides for institutional mechanisms for planning like DPC/MPC.
RELEVANCE: It has remained an important area of PT questions in the UPSC

Q.2 Which of the following statements regarding population control and family planning in India is/are CORRECT?

(1) India was the first country in the world to have launched a national program for family planning in 1952
(2) It has remained an important objective of planning in India since independence
(3) The term ‘population control and family planning’ was instituted in the Union List of the Schedule 7 by the 42nd Amendment Act
(4) The ‘Mission Pariwar Vikas’ is presently being implemented throughout the country for Family Planning in India.
Select the correct answer using the code given below.
(a) 1, 2 and 4 only
(b) 1 and 3 only
(c) 1 and 2 only
(d) 1, 2 and 3 only
ANSWER. OPTION (C)
Explanation:
1. CORRECT STATEMENT: India was the first country in the world to have launched a national program for family planning in 1952
2. CORRECT STATEMENT: It has remained an important objective of planning in India since independence
3. INCORRECT STATEMENT: As the term ‘population control and family planning’ was instituted in the Concurrent List and NOT in the Union List of the Schedule 7 by the 42nd Amendment Act
4. INCORRECT STATEMENT: The ‘Mission Pariwar Vikas’ is presently being implemented ONLY IN 7 States (Bihar, UP, MP, Assam, Chhattishgarh, Rajasthan and Jharkhand.), and not throughout the country.
CONTEXT AND RELEVANCE: It has also remained an important area and recently, the GOI has been mooting for bringing back two-child norm in the country.

Q.3 Consider the following statements with respect to ecological pyramids

(1) Pyramid of biomass and pyramid of numbers is always inverted.
(2) Pyramid of energy is always upright.
Which of the above statements is correct?
(a) 1 only
(b) 2 only
(c) Both 1 and 2
(d)Neither 1 nor 2
ANSWER. OPTION (B)
Explanation:
• Pyramid of biomass: Biomass means total dry weight of all organisms at each trophic level. For most of ecosystems on land, pyramid of biomass is upright. However, for some aquatic ecosystems, pyramid of biomass can be inverted because producers (phytoplankton) at base has low biomass as compared to upper trophic levels.
• Pyramid of numbers: It may not be always upright and can assume inverted shape. E.g. if we consider the ecosystem of few large trees, they form inverted pyramid of numbers.
• Pyramid of energy: It is always upright because there is loss of energy at each upper trophic level in pyramid. Therefore, energy base is always larger at bottom with producers.

DAILY WISDOM TEST-PT QUEST 2020 (12 MAY)

Q.1 Which of the following statement is CORRECT about the National Commission for Women?

(a)The Chairperson and members are appointed by the President of India
(b) The qualifications of the Chairperson and Members have been clearly defined
(c) Its main role is to protect human rights of women
(d) The Chairperson and Members enjoy to some extent, the security of tenure
ANSWER.OPTION (D)
Explanation: the first three options are incorrect
a) INCORRECT: Nomination (not appointment) term is used and is done by the central government
b) INCORRECT: Qualification is general, not defined specifically. Clear definition means like NHRC members and chairperson
c) INCORRECT: Its main role is ‘TO SAFEGUARD THE RIGHTS OF WOMEN’ which also include human rights, rather than using the term human rights
d) CORRECT: Members and Chairperson removal grounds have been mentioned which ensures security of tenure. The term security of tenure means the ground of removal should be mentioned so that they are removed only on those grounds, which in turn, ensures security of tenure. But, to some extent as the process of removal has not been mentioned.
In case of CAT, NHRC, CIC, etc. process has also been mentioned, hence their members and chairpersons enjoy more independence than that of NCW.

Q.2 Which of the following Institutions/Bodies doesn’t have suo motu powers to carry out investigations?

(a) The LOKPAL
(b) The NHRC
(c) The CBI
(d) The NCW
ANSWER. OPTION (A)
Explanation: Only LOKPAL doesn’t have suo motu powers to investigate. All the other three NHRC, CBI and NCW have been given suo motu powers.

Q.3 Which of the following Commissions/Bodies have the provision for a Selection Committee for appointment of members and chairpersons?

(1) The National Commission for Women
(2) The National Commission for the Protection of Child Rights
(3) The National Commission for Backward Class
(4) The National Commission for Schedule Caste
(5) The National Commission for Schedule Tribe
Select the correct answer using the code given below.
(a) 2, 4 and 5 only
(b) 1 and 3 only
(c) 1, 4 and 5 only
(d)None of the above
ANSWER.OPTION (D)
Explanation: none of them have selection committee for appointment. The bodies which have selection committees are: NHRC, LOKPAL, CVC, CBI and CIC.

Q.4 Consider the following statements:

(1) Recent death of thousands of migratory birds at Sambhar lake is due to Avian botulism.
(2) It is caused due to Clostridium botulinum virus.
(3) It affects renal system of birds.
Which of the above statement is/are correct?
(a) 1 only
(b) 1 and 2
(c) 1 and 3
(d)All of them
ANSWER.OPTION (A)
Explanation:
1. Statement 1 is correct: Recently, thousands of migratory birds died at Sambhar lake in Rajasthan due to Avian botulism.
2. Statement 2 is incorrect: It is caused due to Clostridium botulinum bacterium.
3. Statement 3 is incorrect: It affects the nervous system of birds paralyzing their legs and wings and neck.

DAILY WISDOM TEST-PT QUEST 2020 (11 MAY)

Q.1 Consider the following statement regarding financing of the widening fiscal deficit through monetisation route in the post- COVID-19 crisis situation

(1)It will create inflationary pressures
(2)It will lead to greater uncertainty about future inflation
(3)It will increase long-term interest rates and adversely impact growth

Which of the statements given above is/are correct?
(a)1 and 2 only
(b) 1 only
(c) 1 and 3 only
(d) 1, 2 and 3
ANSWER. OPTION (D)
Explanation:
1. CORRECT: If the concept of inflation and monetisation is applied
2. CORRECT: As the government will have to undo its inflation-targeting framework and then volatility ensuing in the economy due to many other factors as well
3. CORRECT: In fact this statement is the effects of the first two statements. Due to inflationary tendency, borrowing and liquidity will be affected which in turn will affect growth rate in the economy.
Note: Due to present covid crisis, there is a demand that the government should adopt old practice of financing through printing money by RBI known as monetisation of fiscal deficit which was discontinued since 1997.

Q.2 Which of the following is/are not a likely economic fallout of the post-COVID-19 crisis on Indian economy?

(1) A sovereign rating downgrade
(2) Regulatory concessions for the banking sector
(3) Decline in households savings rate
(4) Rise in non-performing assets
Select the correct answer using the code given below.
(a) 3 only
(b) 2 and 3 only
(c) 1 and 4 only
(d)None of the above
ANSWER. OPTION (D)
Explanation: All are correct statements as economy is going to face lots of challenges both investment and demand. The government will have less leveraging space and hence, it will have to relax a tight regulatory regime which was recently adopted like IBC/FRBM.
1. A sovereign rating downgrade- The status of economy will not remain the same
2. Regulatory concessions for the banking sector- will be done to face the crisis
3. Decline in households savings rate- as expenditure increases and income declines
4. Rise in non-performing assets-business facing survival threats will not be able to meet their financial commitments

Q.3 The Constitution of India bars which of the following functionaries for employment in the Government of India after retirement?

(a) The Comptroller and Auditor General of India
(b) The Chief Election Commissioner of India
(c) The Attorney General of India
(d)The judges of high courts and the Supreme Court
ANSWER. OPTION (D)
Explanation: It is the only CAG in the given questions options that the constitution has specifically mentioned for not holding any position in GOI after retirement. This type of provision is also for UPSC chairman and members.

Q.4 Consider the following statements:

(1) All scheduled commercial banks in India have to follow Priority sector lending norms of RBI.
(2) Public sector banks need to lend 40 % while private sector banks need to lend 32 % to Priority sector.
(3) Minorities in India are included in list of priority sector.
Which of the above statement is/are correct?
(a) 1 only
(b) 1 and 2
(c) 2 and 3
(d)1 and 3
ANSWER. OPTION (D)
Explanation:
• Statement 1 is correct: All scheduled commercial banks in India (including public sector, private sector and foreign banks) have to follow Priority sector lending norms of RBI.
• Statement 2 is incorrect: Public sector banks as well as private sector banks need to lend 40 % while foreign banks need to lend 32 % to Priority sector.
• Statement 1 is correct: As per RBI circular in 2007, minority communities notified by government of India are included in priority sector list.

Q.5 Which of the following is/are correctly matched?

(1) First generation biofuel – Oil seeds
(2) Regulatory concessions for the banking sector
(3) Third generation biofuel – Engineered algae
Choose the correct code from below:
(a) 1 only
(b) 2 and 3
(c) 1 and 2
(d)All of them
ANSWER. OPTION (C)
Explanation:
• First generation biofuel: They are produced from agricultural crops (edible biomass) like corn, sugarcane, oil seeds. They can be blended with conventional fuel. Examples – bioethanol, biodiesel.
• Second generation biofuel: They are produced from agricultural residues or non-edible biomass such as wood, grass, straw. It also includes municipal and industrial waste. Examples – biogas, biomethane.
• Third generation biofuel: They are produced from algae feedstock (algal biomass) such as water hyacinth, blue green algae. Examples- biobutanol, biomethanol.
• Fourth generation biofuel: They are produced from genetically engineered algae or other microorganisms. They are carbon negative i.e. they help in reducing atmospheric co2 by creating artificial carbon sinks along with being source of fuel. Examples – Hydrogen, methane.
Note: The National Policy on Biofuels 2018 has the objective of reaching 20% ethanol-blending and 5% biodiesel-blending by the year 2030.

DAILY WISDOM TEST-PT QUEST 2020 (09 MAY)

Q.1 Which of the following is not an essential condition enshrined in the Indian Constitution for checking the arbitrary powers exercised by the state?

(a)The Preamble
(b) A democratic polity
(c) The scheme of separation of powers
(d) A system of checks and balances
ANSWER. OPTION (A)
a) The Preamble: It is not an essential condition although it is part of the constitution as it doesn’t specifically limit the power of the state. It represents a set of ideals/ moral objectives on the state.
b) A democratic polity- it is an essential feature based on a system of election wherein people exercise control over the government
c) The scheme of separation of powers- it abhors absolutism and is one of the basic features
d) A system of checks and balances-it is essential for checking the powers of the organs of the state

Q.2 Which of the following is generally not considered as an essential feature of a Constitution?

(1) Defining the role of the state towards its citizens
(2) Defining the duties and responsibility of the citizens towards the state
(3) Limiting the powers of the state
(4) Guaranteeing the rights of the citizens
Select the correct answer using the code given below.
(a) 2 only
(b) 1 and 3 only
(c) 2 and 3 only
(d)None of the above
ANSWER.OPTION (A)
Defining the duties and responsibility of the citizens towards the state like the fundamental duties are not considered as an important feature. The need for constitution evolved largely in the context of how to limit the power of the state and to ensure its responsible behaviour towards citizens.
The statement 1, 3 and 4 are essential features of any liberal constitution.
THE CONTEXT OF THE QUESTION: When recently, the government celebrated 70 years of adoption of the constitution then there was debate on duties and responsibilities of citizens towards the state.

Q.3 Which of the following statements is/are not a benefit of merger of banks recently done by the Government of India?

(1) Promoting financial inclusion and catering to the regional needs of society
(2) Greater recognition and higher rating of the Indian banks in global market
(3) De-burdening the central government on the frequent recapitalization of the public sector banks
(4) Encouraging GDP growth and macro-economic stability
Select the correct answer using the code given below.
(a) 1 only
(b) 3 and 4 only
(c) 3 only
(d)None of the above
ANSWER.OPTION (A)
1. ONLY HALF STATEMENT is CORRECT. That, merger will promote financial inclusion BUT it will undermine the regional needs of society. Different small banks were/are set up also for catering to regional and local needs. But merger goes against this benefit.
2. CORRECT: Greater recognition and higher rating of the Indian banks in global market
3. CORRECT: De-burdening the central government on frequent recapitalization of the public sector banks
4. CORRECT: Encouraging GDP growth and macro-economic stability
Any big bank can have in general features like
1. Efficiency/competitiveness
2. Risk-taking viability
3. Greater geographical presence
4. Less NPA and more credit-worthiness

DAILY WISDOM TEST-PT QUEST 2020 (08 MAY)

Q.1 Which of the following is the most effective way to serve vulnerable section and to meet the responsibility of a welfare state in the present context?

(a)When citizens pay tax and the state takes welfare of people as duty, not just as charity
(b) When the state exercises effective control on market for its regulation
(c) When community and NGOs participation is very high and is localized
(d) When market based on liberal economy model plays bigger role in the life of people than the state
ANSWER. OPTION (A)
Explanation: Why option (a) is the most effective way?
I. The concept of state is based on social contract to serve to its citizens, and welfare is not the responsibility of NGOs/community/charity based institution at first place.
II. The state needs resources which come from taxes and it is among the best factor for success of western democracy as citizens’ are relatively tax-obedient vis-à-vis developing countries.
III. Without the role of the state, the role of community and NGOs cannot be effective. You can learn from the present state of affairs and how migrant labours suffer due to lack of state suppot.
The option B doesn’t make any sense in the context of the question
The option C can be the second best choice but you should know they can more work as supplement, not supplant.
The option D is not a choice at all as a liberal economy is anti-thetical to welfare-based economy.
Note: The context of the question is based on many articles written in the aftermath of COVID-19 on the duty of the state.

Q.2 Which of the following is not a component of the PRADHAN MANTRI GARIB KALYAN JOJANA?

(a) Jan Dhan accounts – PMJDY
(b) Atal Pension Yojana
(c) Aajeevika Deen Dayal Antyodaya Yojana
(d)National Health Mission
ANSWER.OPTION (D)
Explanation:
I. Option A,B & C are part of the PMGKY
II. Option D is not part of the scheme

Q.3 Which of the following RIGHTS has been affected the most under the nation-wide lockdown?

(a) Right to life and liberty of people under the Article 21
(b) The freedom of expression under the Article 19 1 (a)
(c) The right to equality under the Article 14
(d) The right to move freely throughout India under the Article 19(d)

ANSWER. OPTION (D)
Explanation:
I. Option D is the most visible effects on the life of all people in the country-children, young, men/women/aged/rich/poor, etc-hence, it has omnipresence effects.
II. Other options are also right but not as wide-spread as option D. For example, if we consider ourselves, our movement has been restricted but our rights under articles 14/19 (1) (a)/21 have not necessarily been affected.

DAILY WISDOM TEST-PT QUEST 2020 (07 MAY)

Q.1 Consider the following:

(1) Decrease in temperature of ocean water
(2) Sub-areal exposure
(3) Pathogens
(4) Influx of freshwater
Which of the above can be cause of coral bleaching?
(a) 1, 2 and 3
(b) 2 and 3
(c) 2, 3 and 4
(d) All of them
ANSWER. OPTION (D)
Explanation:
1. Corals are temperature sensitive. Any sudden increase or decrease of ocean water temperature leads to coral deaths and coral bleaching. Intense upwelling can suddenly decrease water temperatures causing coral bleaching.
2. Sub-areal exposure of corals can happen during extreme low tides, tectonic movements. This changes the ideal environment required for corals and thus they die.
3. Pathogen induced coral bleaching is called Epizootics. It is different from other sorts of bleaching.
4. Influx of fresh water causes sedimentation while corals require clean sediment free water for their survival and growth. Also, fresh water influx changes salinity of water while corals are sensitive to ocean water salinity.

Q.2 Consider the following statements about Mid-oceanic ridges:

(1) It is the longest mountain chain on the surface of the earth.
(2) They are areas of divergent plate margins.
(3) Deep-focus earthquakes occur near mid-oceanic ridges.
Which of the above statements is/are correct?
(a) 1 and 2
(b) 2 and 3
(c) 1 and 3
(d) All of them

ANSWER.OPTION (A)
Explanation:
1. Statement 1 is correct: It is the longest mountain chain on the surface of the earth though submerged under the oceanic waters.
2. Statement 2 is correct: The best example of divergent plate boundaries is the Mid-Oceanic Ridge. E.g. Mid- Atlantic Ridge where plates are moving away from each other and new crust is formed continuously.
3. Statement 3 is incorrect: In general, the foci of the earthquake in the areas of mid-oceanic ridges are at shallow depths whereas along the Alpine-Himalayan belt as well as the rim of the Pacific, the earthquakes are deep-seated ones.

Q.3 Consider the following stages of Nitrogen cycle:

(1) Nitrogen
(2) Ammonium ions
(3) Amino acids
(4) Nitrate
(5) Nitrite
Which of the following is the sequence of Nitrogen cycle where free nitrogen in atmosphere reaches in plant bodies?
(a) 1- 2- 3- 4- 5
(b) 1- 2- 4- 5- 3
(c) 1- 2- 5- 4- 3
(d) 1- 4- 5- 2- 3

ANSWER. OPTION (C)
Explanation:
1. Nitrogen to Ammonium ions: Nitrogen fixing bacteria like Azotobactor, Clostridium, Rhizobium, Anabaena (Blue green algae) converts atmospheric nitrogen to ammonium ions.
2. Ammonia to Nitrite: Nitrosomonas bacteria promote transformation of ammonia to nitrite.
3. Nitrite to Nitrate: Nitrite is further transformed into nitrate by Nitrobacter bacteria.
4. Nitrates to Amino acids: Nitrates from soil are taken up by plants and converted into amino acids. Amino acids are building blocks of proteins.

DAILY WISDOM TEST-PT QUEST 2020 (06 MAY)

Q.1 Consider the following:

(1) To reduce surplus buffer stock of food grains
(2) To increase the food grain supply in the market
(3) To keep market competitive
(4) To check the excessive decline in the prices of food grains
Which of the above is/are objectives of the Food Corporation of India (FCI) for its open market sale of food grains?
(a) 1 and 3
(b) 1,2 and 3
(c) 2 and 3
(d) All of them
ANSWER.OPTION (B)
Explanation:
1. Statement 1 is correct: (FCI) conducts open market sale of food grains so as to offload surplus stocks with it and make way for newly procured food grains after the harvest season.
2. Statement 2 is correct: Whenever there is low level of food grain supply in market, FCI try to balance the situation through its open market sale of food grains. It increases the food grain supply in the market thereby keeping uninterrupted supply of food grains.
3. Statement 3 is correct: Whenever there is low food grain supply in market, it may lead to hoarding of food grains making market uncompetitive. Therefore, Food Corporation of India (FCI) doing open market sale of food grains keeps market competitive.
4. Statement 4 is incorrect: One of the objective of Food Corporation of India (FCI) doing open market sale of food grains is to check the food inflation i.e. the excessive rise in the prices of food grains.

Q.2 Consider the following statements:

(1) Under Wildlife (Protection) Act 1972, an area can be declared as wildlife sanctuary by state government only.
(2) No alteration of boundary of a wildlife sanctuary can be done except on recommendation of the National Board for Wildlife.
(3) An amendment to the Wildlife (Protection) Act in 2003 provided for territorial waters to be included in areas to be declared as wildlife sanctuaries.
Which of the above statement is correct?
(a) 1 and 2
(b) 2 and 3
(c) 2 only
(d) All of them

ANSWER.OPTION (C)
Explanation:
1. Statement 1 is incorrect: Usually state government declare an area as wildlife sanctuary/National Park. However, Central government may also declare an area as wildlife sanctuary/National Park by notification, under certain conditions.
2. Statement 2 is correct: No alteration of boundary of a wildlife sanctuary/National Park can be done except on recommendation of the National Board for Wildlife.
3. Statement 3 is incorrect: An amendment to the Wildlife (Protection) Act in 1991 provided for territorial waters to be included in areas to be declared as wildlife sanctuaries for protection of marine flora and fauna. While an Amendment in 2003 provided for creation of new two types of protected areas namely Conservation Reserve and Community Reserve.

Q.3 Consider the following statements:

(1) Inflation rate is inversely proportional to unemployment rate in short-run.
(2) Stagflation is a situation wherein economy experiences both low inflation rates and low unemployment rates.
Which of the above statement is/are correct?
(a) 1 only
(b) 2 only
(c) Both 1 and 2
(d) Neither 1 nor 2

ANSWER. OPTION (A)
Explanation:
1. Statement 1 is correct: In general, high inflation rates leads to lower unemployment rate in short-run i.e. Inflation rate is inversely proportional to unemployment rate. However, there can be a situation where high inflation rates and higher unemployment rates exist simultaneously in an economy. E.g. Stagflation.
2. Statement 2 is incorrect: Stagflation is a situation wherein economy experiences both high inflation rates and high unemployment rates simultaneously. Such situation may arise during economic stagnation due to low aggregate demand for long period of time.

Q.4 Suppose Mr. X is businessman and does following activities during a year in which there was high inflation rate:

(1) He borrowed a loan to buy a house.
(2) He bought food grains for his family.
(3) He saved some part of his income as cash with him.
(4) He exports manufactured goods to other countries.
Mr. X benefits from which of the above activities?
(a) 1, 3 and 4
(b) 1, 2 and 3
(c) 1 and 4
(d) All of them

ANSWER. OPTION (C)
Explanation:
1. When inflation rate is high, lenders suffer while borrowers’ benefits. Therefore, when Mr. X borrows money and invests to buy a home, he benefits.
2. Consumption of goods and services fall during high inflation rate as they become costlier. Therefore, Mr. X does not benefit in buying food grains.
3. Money loses value with increase in inflation rate. Therefore, holding money with oneself does not benefit during high inflation rates.
4. Due to high inflation, goods and services get competitive prices in the world market. Therefore, Mr. X can increase volume of export and gain from this situation.

DAILY WISDOM TEST-PT QUEST 2020 (05 MAY)

Q.1 Which one of the following was declared as a global pandemic by the WHO before the COVID-19?

(a) The Ebola outbreak
(b) The Zika virus
(c) The MERS-CoV
(d) The H1N1 swine flu

ANSWER. OPTION (D)

Explanation:
a) INCORRECT statement-it was declared as the ‘global health emergency of international concern’
b) INCORRECT statement- it was declared as the ‘global health emergency of international concern’
c) INCORRECT statement- it was declared as the ‘global health emergency of international concern’
d) CORRECT statement- it was declared as Pandemic in 2009, the last to be declare so before COVID-19

Q.2 Consider the following statements regarding global health emergencies declared by the WHO

(1) The COVID-19 has been declared as a ‘global health emergency of international concern’
(2) All the diseases outbreaks which are declared as ‘global health emergency of international concerns’ are also declared as pandemic
Select the incorrect answer using the code given below.
(a) 1 only
(b) 2 only
(c) Both 1 and 2
(d) Neither 1 nor 2

ANSWER. OPTION (B)

Explanation:
1. CORRECT: The COVID-19 has been declared as a ‘global health emergency of international concern’-
2. INCORRECT: As one can learn from the first question above.

Q.3 Which of the following statements is/are not correct about the ‘global health emergency of international concern’ declared by the WHO?

(1) The outbreak must pose a risk to more than one country.
(2) An outbreak requires a coordinated international response.
(3) It imposes legal obligation on its each member country to notify the “public health emergency of international concern within its territory”.
(4) It is not limited to epidemic- prone diseases, but also extends to biological, chemical and nuclear hazards.
Select the incorrect answer using the code given below.
(a) 1 and 2 only
(b) 3 and 4 only
(c) 1,3 and 4 only
(d) None of the above

ANSWER. OPTION (d)
Explanation: All the four statements are correct

Q.4 The centre transfers funds to states for the States Disaster Response Fund on the recommendations of which of the following?

(a) The Finance Commission.
(b) The Ministry of Finance
(c) The National Disaster Management Authority
(d) The Ministry of Home Affairs

ANSWER.OPTION (a)
Explanation: Since it is part of the fiscal transfer from the centre, it is done on the recommendation of FC.

Q.5 According to a new set of FAQ released by the central government related to CSR under the Companies Act 2013, which of the following is not correct?

(a) Contributions to ‘Chief Minister’s Relief Fund’ and ‘State Relief Fund’ for Covid-19 cannot be claimed as corporate social responsibility (CSR) spending by companies.
(b) Contributions to the PM CARES fund can be claimed as CSR expenditure.
(c) Ex-gratia payment to temporary or casual or daily wage workers over and above the disbursement of wages, specifically for fighting Covid-19, cannot be classified as CSR by companies.
(d) Contributions to all Covid-19 related spending on health care can be classified as CSR expenditure including preventive health care and sanitation, and disaster management

ANSWER. OPTION (c)
Explanation: A factual question. In fact, Ex-gratia payment to temporary or casual or daily wage workers over and above the disbursement of wages, specifically for fighting Covid-19, ARE TO be classified as CSR by companies.

DAILY WISDOM TEST-PT QUEST 2020 (04 MAY)

Q.1 Consider the following statements in the context of naming of the viruses and diseases in the world

(1) There are different processes, and purposes, for naming viruses and diseases.
(2) The naming of viruses and diseases are done by the WHO.
Select the correct answer using the code given below.
(a) 1 only
(b) 2 only
(c) Both 1 and 2
(d) Neither 1 nor 2

ANSWER. OPTION (a)
Explanation:
1. CORRECT statement
2. INCORRECT statement
The WHO only names-diseases. The naming of viruses is done by the International Committee on Taxonomy of Viruses (ICTV).

Q.2 Which of the following statements is not correct about the Coronavirus?

(a) Coronaviruses are a family of hundreds of viruses that can cause fever, respiratory problems, and sometimes gastrointestinal symptoms too.
(b) The present coronavirus has been named as SARS-cov-2, because of its close genetic ties to another coronavirus, the one that causes SARS.
(c) The disease caused by SARS-cov-2— is called Covid-19 which is characterized by coughing, fever, and respiratory distress.
(d) The Covid-19 name has been given by the WHO which relates to the place Wuhan, in China where it first originated.

ANSWER. OPTION (d)
Explanation: All A, B, & C are CORRECT. D is INCORRECT as the name of diseases is done by the WHO in such a fashion that to avoid a name that doesn’t demonize a particular place, animal, individual, or group of people and which was also pronounceable. Hence, it named Co-Vid-Nine-teen.

Q.3 Consider the following statements regarding the purposes of having different names for viruses and diseases

(1) Viruses are named to enable discussion on prevention, spread, transmissibility, severity and treatment.
(2) Diseases are named based on their genetic structure to facilitate the development of diagnostic tests, vaccines and medicines.
Select the correct answer using the code given below.
(a) 1 only
(b) 2 only
(c) Both 1 and 2
(d) Neither 1 nor 2

ANSWER. OPTION (d)
Explanation: Both statements are INCORRECT as
1. Viruses are named based on their genetic structure to facilitate the development of diagnostic tests, vaccines and medicines.
2. Diseases are named to enable discussion on prevention, spread, transmissibility, severity and treatment

Q.4 Which one of the following statements in not CORRECT regarding process of working of Coronaviruses

(a) Coronaviruses are divided into four groups called genera: alpha, beta, gamma, and delta.
(b) Alpha and beta coronaviruses mostly infect birds, while gamma and delta mostly reside in mammals.
(c) Coronaviruses are made up of one strip of RNA, and that genetic material is surrounded by a membrane studded with little spike proteins.
(d) Coronaviruses are made up of one strip of RNA, and that genetic material is surrounded by a membrane studded with little spike proteins.

ANSWER.OPTION (b)
Explanation:
a) CORRECT.
1. INCORRECT: The correct statement is- gamma and delta coronaviruses mostly infect birds, while alpha and beta mostly reside in mammals.
b) CORRECT
c) CORRECT

Q.5 Which of the following statements is/are taken into consideration by the WHO while deciding a disease as Pandemic?

(1) An event in which a disease is actively spreading
(2) A disease which has grown out of control
(3) An event in which a disease has geographical spread
(4) A disease that affects a whole country or the entire world
(a) 1 and 2 only
(b) 3 and 4 only
(c) 2, 3 and 4 only
(d) 1, 2, 3 and 4

ANSWER. OPTION (b)
Explanation: 1 and 2 are the features of Epidemic. In pandemic, the most important factor is its geographical spread, may not necessarily the growth and severity of the disease.The WHO has a defined standard to declare a disease as pandemic. It follows six phases of spread of disease. The WHO defines a pandemic as the worldwide spread of a new disease, across several countries or continents, affecting a large number of people. A pandemic is a type of epidemic that has spread to at least three countries within the WHO region.

DAILY WISDOM TEST-PT QUEST 2020 (02 MAY )

Q.1 The COVID-19 nation-wide Lockdown in India can be most appropriately described as which one of the followings?

(a) The National Emergency
(b) The State Emergency
(c) The Social Emergency
(d) The Health Emergency

ANSWER. OPTION (C)
THE EXPLANATIONS:
The COVID-19 nation-wide Lockdown in India can be most appropriately described as the SOCIAL EMERGENCY.
i. The National Emergency- Article 352 has not been invoked
ii. The State Emergency-Article 356 has not been invoked
iii. The Health Emergency-it is not most appropriate as only few thousand people are infected with COVID-19, the rest are facing social restrictions as their movement is strictly regulated, it would be social emergency, and not health emergency.
iv. Human all sorts’ social interface is under regulation through social distancing but people are LARGELY safe and healthy.

Q.2 Which of the following statements can be considered as the most appropriate in the context of imposition of a nationwide lockdown without invoking the emergency provisions of the Constitution wherein citizens have been given protection of their Fundamental Rights?

(a) It is not constitutionally valid
(b) The special situation demands special powers
(c) It is not constitutionally valid but is essential for the victory against COVID-19
(d) It has some flaws but has a sound basis of law

ANSWER. OPTION (D)
a. It is not constitutionally valid-INCORRECT
b. The special situation demands special powers-RIGHT BUT NOT CLEAR WHAT IS SPECIAL POWER
c. It is not constitutionally valid but is essential for the victory against COVID-19-INCORRECT
d. It has some flaws but has a sound basis of law-THE MOST APPROPRIATE STATEMENT
NOTE: The nation-wide lockdown is a sort of emergency, in fact more than an emergency but still it has not been invoked under the provisions of the constitution. When lockdown seems to be similar to emergency but instead of legislative rout the government has taken executive rout which seems to be threatening to the fundamental rights of people esp. Article 19/21, hence it is being considered to have some flaws. You are aware that some fundamental rights cannot be suspended even during national emergency but in case of lockdown, the government seems to have restricted/SUPPRESED some fundamental rights (Article 20/21).

But it has a sound basis of law that is there are four major laws which the government has applied to enforce lockdown such as
1. Nation-wide lockdown and exhaustive administrative measures-DMA
2. Health related guidelines-like social distancing, quarantine, isolation-EDA
3. Legal enforcement by police-Cr P C
4. Penal Action-IPC

Q.3 With reference to the COVID-19 in India, consider the following pairs:

(1) Social Distancing: It is a practice of lessening physical interaction with other people, so that, the chain of transmission of the coronavirus can be broken.
(2) Quarantine: It is imposed to separate and restrict the movement of persons, who may have been exposed to infectious disease, but not yet known to be ill.
(3) Isolation: It is a complete separation from others of a person known or reasonably believed to be infected with communicable diseases.
(4) Curfew: It is imposed to order people to stay indoors and not venture out. If anyone is found to be violating the order he could be booked under the law.
(5) Lockdown: It is announced by authorities to restrict public movement. It entails complete stoppage of any sort of public movement except essential services.
Which of the pairs given above are incorrectly matched?
(a) 2 and 3 only
(b) 4 and 5 only
(c) 2, 3, 4 and 5 only
(d) None of the above

ANSWER.OPTION (D)
ALL ARE CORRECTLY MATCHED. Keep your basics clear, simply read the Q itself for clear understanding

Q.4 With reference to the COVID-19 in India, the Government has taken various safety protocols. Which one of the followings is CORRECT in terms of the level of severity in ascending order in the enforcement of social movements of people?

(a) Social Distancing, Quarantine, Isolation, Curfew and Lockdown
(b) Social Distancing, Isolation, Quarantine, Lockdown and Curfew
(c) Lockdown, Social Distancing, Quarantine, Isolation and Curfew
(d) Social Distancing, Quarantine, Isolation, Lockdown and Curfew

ANSWER.OPTION (D)
The correct order is Social Distancing, Quarantine, Isolation, Lockdown and Curfew.
As we have already told that there is nation-wide lockdown but not CURFEW. CURFEW is more severe than lockdown. Some states like Punjab enforced CURFEW.

Q.5 Which of the followings is/are not the institutional mechanisms created or under operation by the GOI at national level to effectively tackle the COVID-19 challenges across the country?

(a) The Group of Ministers (GoM): Under the Chairmanship of Union Health Minister, it will be the apex body to take policy decisions.
(b) National Crisis Management Committee: Under the Chairmanship of Cabinet Secretary, it will review the situation across the country and issue directions.
(c) The National Executive Committee: Under the Chairmanship of Home Secretary, it will monitor and coordinate in order to mitigate the impact.
(d) The Central Rapid Response Team: It is under the Ministry of Health and Family Welfare which will support and advise the State.

ANSWER. OPTION (C)
The INCORRECT statement is C. A, B and D are under operation. A and D have been specially created due to COVID-19. B remains in operation as part of disaster management. But C is currently not in operation rather the power of the national executive committee has been given to the Secretary, Ministry of Health.

DAILY WISDOM TEST-PT QUEST 2020 (APRIL MONTH)

Q.1 Which of the following is incorrect regarding post-retirement appointments of judges?

(a) Justice Ranjan Gogoi is the first retired Chief Justice of India getting nominated for the Rajya Sabha.
(b) Former CJI Mohammed Hidayatullah was appointed as the Vice President of India in 1979.
(c) CJI Justice Ranganath Mishra was first to be nominated as a Rajya Sabha MP.
(d) Former Supreme Court judge KS Hegde was elected as a Lok Sabha MP.He was later also elected as the speaker of Lok Sabha.

ANSWER: OPTION (C)


Q.2 What are the names of the members of Rajya Sabha who became the Prime Minister of India?

(a) Smt. Indira Gandhi, Shri H.D. Deve Gowda and Dr. Manmohan Singh.
(b) Smt. Indira Gandhi, Chaudhari Charan Singh and Shri H.D. Deve Gowda
(c) Smt. Indira Gandhi, Chaudhari Charan Singh , Shri H.D. Deve Gowda and Dr. Manmohan Singh.
(d) Smt. Indira Gandhi, Shri H.D. Deve Gowda, Shri Inder Kumar Gujral and Dr. Manmohan Singh.
ANSWER: OPTION(D)
Shri Inder Kumar Gujral became member of RS in 1992, and when he became PM in 1997, he was a RS member. Chaudhari Charan Singh has a distinction to become PM without being member of either house.

Q.3 Which of the following is correct about the Prime Minister’s Citizen Assistance and Relief in Emergency Situations Fund’ (PM CARES Fund)’

(a) It is a public trust which has received the initial corpus as budgetary support from the government.
(b) Unlike PMNRF ( Prime Minister’s National Relief Fund), the PM CARES Fund will not be audited by the CAG.
(c) It is a public trust which has been registered under the Society Registration Act 1860.
(d) It is a public fund with private contributions coming entirely as voluntary contributions from individuals/organizations
ANSWER: OPTION(D)
the first three are incorrect because of following reasons:
a) It is a public trust which has received but IT WILL NOT BE GIVEN ANY BUDGETARY SUPPORT by the government.
b) Neither PMNRF ( Prime Minister’s National Relief Fund), nor will the PM CARES Fund be audited by the CAG.
c) It is a public trust but HAS NOT BEEN REGISTERED yet under any Registration Acts.

Q.4 Which of the following statements can be considered as the most appropriate regarding efficientdelivery of essential services during disaster time like the COVID-19?

I. In a relatively homogenous society, a centralised mechanism can be effective.

II. In a relatively diverse and complex society, a more decentralised mechanism can be effective.

III. A country which is authoritarian can tackle more effectively the COVID-19 disaster than that of ademocratic regime.

IV. It is neither nature of society nor the nature of the regime rather it is the resourcefulness of the statewhich determines effectiveness of tackling disaster.

Select the correct code:

(a) Only I & II
(b) Only IV
(c) Only III
(d) Only I,II & III

ANSWER: OPTION (A)
Explanation:
a) In general, if a society is homogeneous in terms of its religious, social, economic and political aspects, a centralized system will not be a problem and will be very effective in disaster time like Singapore and South Korea. HENCE, IT IS A GENERALLY ACCEPTED VIEW AND IS APPROPRIATE.

b) A country which is very diverse like India, only a centralized mechanism will not be effective. For instance, the states like Odisha, Maharashtra, Andhra Pradesh and Kerala have taken many laudable steps. HENCE, IT IS A GENERALLY ACCEPTED VIEW AND IS APPROPRIATE.

c) It is a very difficult choice. We will give a separate explanation.

d) In case of this option, you can easily understand that all western countries are highly most resourceful countries but they are in mess due to lack of efficient system of health governance-It will also be given a separate explanation. BUT IT IS NOT APPROPRIATE OPTION as it rejects the relevance of nature of regime, which cannot be altogether rejected.

A BRIEF NOTE
After COVID-19 striking badly almost all major countries having democratic regimes or authoritarian, there are analyses in various news papers and platforms like the Indian express, the diplomat, the Carnegie endowment, European union commission, WHO, etc. on which regime is more efficient in tackling COVID-19-DEMOCRATIC REGIME VS. AUTHORITARIAN. Their summary is as follows:
The democracy doing better:
1. Taiwan-a participative democracy
2. South Korea-a centralized democracy
3. Japan-an egalitarian society
4. Germany/Australia/New Zealand to some extent
5. India with some reservations
The democracy doing worse
1. The US
2. Italy
3. The UK
4. France

The authoritarian regimes doing better
1. China-authoritarian
2. Singapore-autocratic
3. Some Islamic countries
But all are not successful like Iran.
Hence, If you will look for all analyses, a mixed view is given about the nature of regimes-authoritarian or democratic.
Therefore, option c and d will not be appropriate. Asia times says democracies have edge but the Carnegie Endowment for International Peace says that there is mixed response.
We have given a long explanation for two reasons:
1. To ensure your multiple arguments are addressed
2. It has also after PT effects/relevance.

Q.5 Consider the following statements regarding discretionary powers of the President and Governor regarding nomination of members to the Upper House

(I) The President nominates 12 members of Rajya Sabha ‘in his discretion’ and the real executive has no any role in such nominations.
(II) The Governor can first nominate a person as a member of Legislative Council, in case of bicameral legislature in the state, and then invite him to form government as Chief Minister .
(III) Inviting a nominated member to form the government by appointing Prime Minister or Chief Minister by the President or Governor is contrary to the basic concept of parliamentary democracy.

Select the incorrect code:

(a) Only II
(b) Only I
(c) Only III
(d) Only II & III
ANSWER:- The correct option is (B)/that is the incorrect statement is only (I)
EXPLANATION:
I. Although the President nominates 12 members of Rajya Sabha ‘in his discretion’ but there is role of the real executive as
• Generally, the advice is given by the Cabinet
• The process is initiated by the Ministry of Home affairs and is also notified by this ministry after nomination
• As a healthy convention, the president will not exercise this power all alone even if article 80 says the president to nominate 12 members
II. This is correct statement, the Governor can do so. It past, the governor has done so. For instance in 1952 in Madras, the Governor nominated Shri C. Rajagopalachari as a member of the Legislative Council and then invited him to form the Government. It was challenged in the high court which upheld it constitutional validity.
III. This statement is also correct as appointing a nominated member is valid as per Indian constitution but is contrary to parliamentary democracy wherein the head of the government should be representative of people. A nominated member has no electoral support and therefore, has no mandate from the people.
NOTE: NOMINATED MEMBERS related to parliament and state legislature are in news due to:
I. Nomination of Ranjan Gogoi
II. The Maharashtra CM is not member of either house and due to COVID-19, election may not be held, hence the CM faces challenge as it near to six months, hence, the govt. has advised the governor to nominate him as member of legislative council.

Q.6 Consider the following statements regarding the recommendations of Sarkaria Commission for the Appointment of the Chief Minister in case of lack of clear majority after elections:

(1) The leader of the single largest party having absolute majority in the Assembly should be asked to form the Government.
(2) If no party has the majority, then the leader of an alliance of parties that was formed prior to the elections should be called to form the Government.
(3) In case there is no coalition prior to the elections, then the leader of single largest party who claims to form the Government with others should be called to form the Government.
(4) In case no Government is formed, then the leader of the post electoral coalition parties should be called to form the Government.
On the basis of the above statements which of the following is incorrect?

(a) The above statements are in the correct order of precedence that ought to be followed by the Governor in case of a hung House.
(b) The courts take them into consideration while scrutinising the decisions taken by Governors in case of a hung House.
(c) If the Governor doesn’t follow the above order of precedence, the courts declare the decision of the governor ultra-vires
(d) The Guidelines provided by the M.M. Punchhi Commission is  NOT completely  different from that of Sarkaria Commission
ANSWER: The incorrect option is (c)
a) It is a correct order
b) It is also correct
c) The courts MAY NOT NECESSARILY declare the decision of the governor ultra-virus- EXAMPLE GOA/MANIPUR
d) The Guidelines provided by the M.M. Punchhi Commission is NOT completely different from that of Sarkaria Commission RATHER A SLIGHT DIFFERENT ( see below)

The C option had a trick—the courts declare the decision, but it isn’t always the case.

THE EXPLANATION
The recent cases where the guidelines have not been followed on order:
Manipur: For instance, in Manipur in 2017 assembly elections, the Congress won 28 seats out of the total 60 and the BJP 21 but the BJP formed the government.

Goa: the Congress with NCP had 18 seats and was the single largest party, needing only three more for a majority. The BJP had 13, (well short of a majority), with the remaining ten seats in the 40-member assembly going to other parties and independents. Yet, the governor appointed a BJP coalition with the MGP (three seats), Goa Forward Party (three seats) and three independents.
Karnataka: the BJP as the largest party was invited to form the government although the post-poll alliance of congress and Janata dal had majority and there was no fourth party.
Maharashtra: post-poll alliance offered clear majority but BJP as single largest party was invited to form the government.
By this and the past two experiences, we learn two things:
1. Despite the guidelines set by the Punchhi and Sarkaria Commissions on government-formation in the case of a hung assembly, the accepted reality now is that political compulsions and crude partisanship rather than Constitutional or procedural propriety guides the conduct of the Governor.
2. The order of precedent given by the Sarakaria Commission and even by MMPC are not exhaustive and absolute and still cannot address the dynamic nature of the political calculations as in case of Goa and Manipur.
3. In case of Manipur and Goa, if we go by Sarkaria Commission, then the congress must have been invited but it may not have proved majority.
What we can conclude is that even if guidelines are good and should be adhered still the governor can act as per situation which may not necessarily be in accordance with Sarkaria Commission and the courts cannot declare ultra vires.

Q.7 Which of the following Committees/Commissions has laid down the view that a pre-poll alliance should be treated as one political party?

(a) The M.M. Punchhi Commission
(b) Sarkaria Commission
(c) The National Commission to Review the Working of the Constitution.
(d) ARC-II
ANSWER: OPTION(A)
THE MMPC GUIDELINES ARE:
1. Call the group with the largest pre-poll alliance commanding the largest number;
2. the single largest party with support of others;
3. the post-electoral coalition with all parties joining the government; and last
4. the post-electoral alliance with some parties joining the government and remaining including Independents supporting from outside.

Q.8 Which of the following statements is correct regarding the disaster management in India?

(a) Under the NDMA 2005, a national disaster is declared by an executive order of the government.
(b) There is categorisation of disasters on ‘case by case’ basis under the National Disaster Management Guidelines by the Government of India and it has not yet adopted a defined standard for such categorisation.
(c) The categorisation of a disaster as “rare severity”/”severe nature” by the central government will not have any effects on the nature of the Relief given to states by the central government.
(d) The National Crisis Management Committee is responsible for taking decision on the quantum of assistance to be given to states on the recommendation of the Ministry of Home Affairs.
ANSWER: OPTION(B)
Explanation:
a) INCORRECT- as there is no official announcement of a disaster as national disaster as this term officially doesn’t exist and the NDMA 2005 has not such provision.
b) CORRECT- STATEMENT as India has not yet adopted any defined standard.
c) INCORRECT- as the categorisation of a disaster as “rare severity”/”severe nature” by the central government will DECIDE THE QUANTUM OF RELIEF
d) INCORRECT- As there are two mechanisms:
I. The National Crisis Management Committee is responsible for taking decision on the quantum of assistance to be given to states in case of major crisis.
II. In case of severe nature of crisis.- it is An inter-ministerial group, headed by the Union Home Secretary, studies the assessment and recommends the quantum of assistance from the NDRF/National Calamity Contingency Fund (NCCF). Based on this, a high-level committee comprising the Finance Minister as chairman and the Home Minister and Agriculture Minister as members approves the central assistance.
NOTE: The 10th Finance Commission (1995-2000) examined a proposal that a disaster be termed “a national calamity of rarest severity” if it affects one-third of the population of a state. The panel did not define a “calamity of rare severity” but stated that a calamity of rare severity would necessarily have to be adjudged on A CASE-TO-CASE BASIS taking into account, inter-alia, the intensity and magnitude of the calamity, level of assistance needed, the capacity of the state to tackle the problem, the alternatives and flexibility available within the plans to provide succour and relief, etc. But it didn’t recommend any established standard to be adopted by the government.

Q.9 Consider the following statements regarding the term ‘disaster’

(I) There is a legal provision to declare a disaster as a ‘national calamity’/’national disaster’ under the NDMA 2005.
(II) The term ‘National Calamity’ or ‘national disaster’ is only an expression used in general parlance and there is no provision in statutes or manuals to declare a disaster as a ‘national calamity’/’national disaster’.
Select the incorrect code:
(a) Only I
(b) Only II
(c) Neither
(d) Both
ANSWER: OPTION (A)

I. INCORRECT- As there is no any legal provision to declare a disaster as a ‘national calamity’/’national disaster’ under the NDMA 2005.
II. CORRECT statement
EXPLANATION:
1. The Centre informed the Kerala High Court in 2018 that there was no legal provision to declare a disaster as a national calamity, amid demands for declaring the floods as a national disaster.
2. In an affidavit, the Centre states it treats disaster in terms of severity level like “Disaster of Serious Nature” /’L3 Level of Disaster’ under the National Disaster Management Guidelines.
3. It is submitted that there is no provision in statutes or manuals to declare a disaster as a ‘national calamity’, howsoever big it may be.
4. It is only an expression used in general parlance
IN THE END- One should know that officially there is no term called national disaster. Rather the terms are- disaster of serious nature/rare severity/severe nature, etc. as per the NDMA and guidelines issued under this act.

NOTE: The questions were framed in the wake of the COVID-19 disaster, that one should know the fundamentals of disaster. We will ask certainly questions related to COVID-19 DISASTER.

Q.10 Which of the following is not correct about the term Constitution?

(a) It is a legal document which deals with machineries of the government.
(b) Judicial orders and conventions are not considered as part of the Constitution
(c) A written Constitution is considered as the fundamental law of the land.
(d) The evolution of the Constitution in modern times first happened on the land of the UK
ANSWER: OPTION (B)
Explanation
a) CORRECT and its is the most generic definition of constitution
b) INCORRECT- The term constitution consists of -legal documents, charters, conventions, Judicial orders and even legal books in broad sense.
c) CORRECT- A written Constitution is considered as the fundamental law of the land.
d) CORRECT-The evolution of the Constitution in modern times first happened on the land of the UK

Q.11 Which of the following situation/s reflect that government sustains its expenditure at the cost of people’s money?

(1.) Inflation tax
(2.) Seigniorage
(3.) People holding non-liquid assets

Choose the correct answer form the codes given below:
(a) 2 only
(a) 1 and 2 only
(a) 2 and 3 only
(a) All of them
ANSWER: OPTION (B)
Explanation:
• Seigniorage is the difference between the face value of money, and the cost to produce it. Seigniorage may be counted as revenue for a government when the money it creates is worth more than it costs to produce. This revenue is often used by governments to finance portions of their expenditures without having to collect taxes. If, for example, it costs the Indian government 1 rupee to produce 10 rupee coin, the seigniorage is 9 rupees.
• Demonetisation has caused a net loss to the Reserve Bank of India’s (RBI’s) seigniorage, besides increasing the cost of printing notes, says an SBI Research report (October 2019).
• Inflation tax is not an actual legal tax paid to a government. Instead it refers to the penalty for holding cash at a time of high inflation. If a person is holding cash, this cash is worth less after inflation has risen as inflation erodes the value of cash currency.
• When the government prints more money or reduces interest rates, it floods the market with cash, which raises inflation in the long run. In such situation, values of currency decreases due to increase in inflation. Thus, those holding cash for long time are indirectly taxed as they receive less value of their cash currency after increase in inflation while those holding securities, real estate or other assets (non-liquid assets which are not easily and readily convertible to cash), the effect may be negligible.

Q.12 Who determines the forms of the accounts of the government of India?

(a) The comptroller and auditor general of India
(b) The controller man wasn’t ballet school Portland them smoother than girls up in you and the predicament accountant general of India
(c) The President
(d) The Prime Minister
ANSWER: OPTION (C)
The explanation: It was a basic question related to the provisions of the Constitution. Article 148-151 deal with the CAG. As per Article 150, the forms of the accounts are determined by the president on the advice of the CAG.

Q.13 Consider the following statements about Convention on Migratory Species (CMS).

(I) It is also known as Vienna Convention.
(II) The CMS Secretariat is provided and administered by the United Nations Environment Programme.
(III) 13th Conference of Parties (COP) of CMS was held in February 2020 at New Delhi.
Which of the above statement is/are correct?
(a) 2 and 3
(b) 2 only
(c) 1 and 2
(d) 1 and 3
ANSWER. OPTION (B)
Explanation:
Convention on the Conservation of Migratory Species of Wild Animals (CMS):
• It is also known as Bonn Convention.
• It was signed in Bonn, Germany, in 1979 as an intergovernmental treaty under the aegis of the United Nations Environment Programme (UNEP).
• It aims to protect terrestrial, aquatic and avian migratory species.
• The Secretariat is provided by the United Nations Environment Programme (UNEP) and is based in Bonn, Germany.
• It has two Appendices:
1. Appendix-I: It lists migratory species threatened with extinction.
2. Appendix-II: It lists migratory species that need or would significantly benefit from international cooperation.
• India is party to the Convention since 1983.
• The 13th Conference of the Parties to the CMS (CMS COP13) took place in in February 2020 in Gandhinagar (Gujarat, India), with “Migratory species connect the planet and together we welcome them home” as its theme.

Q.14 Which of the following types of investments can be a form of Foreign Direct Investment (FDI) in India?

(I) Mutual Funds
(II) A Joint Venture
(III) Merger and Acquisition
(IV) A Wholly owned subsidiary
Choose the correct code from below:
(a) 2 and 3
(b) 1,2,and 3
(c) 2, 3 and 4
(d) All of them
ANSWER. OPTION (C)
Explanation:
• Forms of Foreign Direct Investment (FDI) in India:
1. By incorporating a wholly owned subsidiary or company. E.g. Volkswagen India
2. By acquiring shares in an associated enterprise. E.g. recently, Facebook acquired/bought 9.99% stake in Reliance Jio.
3. Through a merger or an acquisition of an unrelated enterprise. E.g. Flipkart acquisition by Walmart.
4. Participating in an equity joint venture with another investor or enterprise. E.g. Maruti- Suzuki
• Foreign Investment in Mutual Funds is form of Foreign Portfolio Investment (FPI). Foreign portfolio investment (FPI) involves holding financial assets from a country outside of the investor’s own. FPI holdings can include stocks, ADRs, GDRs, bonds, mutual funds, and exchange traded funds. Along with foreign direct investment (FDI), FPI is one of the common ways for investors to participate in an overseas economy, especially retail investors. Unlike FDI, FPI consists of passive ownership; investors have no control over ventures or direct ownership of property or a stake in a company.

Q.15 The government of India has declared the COVID-19 as a

(a) National disaster
(b) Health disaster/epidemic
(c) Notified disaster
(d) Social emergency/disaster
ANSWER: OPTION (C)
Explanation: The government of India has declared the COVID-19 as a ‘NOTIFIED DISASTER’
a) National disaster- it used only in general parlance. Even some news papers have also mentioned that the GOVT has declared the COVID-19 as national disaster, officially it is not used.
b) Health disaster/epidemic- there is no such declaration
c) Notified disaster-correct.
d) Social emergency/disaster-it is also being used in general parlance but not in legal term
Hence, the correct option was (c)
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Q.16 Under which of the following laws, the COVID-19 has been declared as a type of disaster?

(I) The National Disaster Management Act
(II) The Epidemic Diseases Act
(III) The Indian Penal Code
(IV) Code of Criminal Procedure
Select the correct answer using the code given below.
(a) 1 only
(b) 2 only
(c) 1 and 2 only
(d) 1, 2, 3 and 4
ANSWER: OPTION(A)
Explanation:
1. Under the National Disaster Management Act, the COVID-19 has been declared as a ‘NOTIFIED DISASTER’.
2. The Epidemic Diseases Act, the Indian Penal Code and Code of Criminal Procedure are also related to COVID-19 but not for the case of declaring it as a disaster.
3.The government of India has invoked SECTION 2(d) of the DISASTER MANAGEMENT ACT to declare the spread of COVID-19 as a “NOTIFIED DISASTER”. SECTION 2(d) deals with definition of the term disaster in the Act.
Hence, the correct option was (a)

Q.17 With reference to the Essential Commodities Act 1955, consider the following statements:

(I) The Act empowers the Central and state governments concurrently to control production, supply and distribution of certain commodities in view of rising prices.
(II) It is issued by the ministry of trade and commerce in consultation with the ministry of agriculture
(III) This law has not yet been invoked to ensure the adequate supplies of essential commodities under the COVID-19 disaster.
(IV) The government of India has invoked the Legal Metrology Act 2009 in place of the Essential Commodities Act 1955 to ensure the price regulation of the essential commodities.
Which of the statements given above are incorrect?
(a) 1 and 3 only
(b) 3 and 4 only
(c) 2 and 3 only
(d) 2, 3 and 4 only
ANSWER: OPTION (D)
Explanation: With reference to the Essential Commodities Act 1955
1. CORRECT statement
2. INCORRECT statement as it is invoked by the Ministry of Consumer Affairs, Food & Public Distribution
3. INCORRECT statement as the GOVT has already invoked the Essential Commodities Act 1955
4. INCORRECT statement as the Legal Metrology Act 2009 HAS NOT BEEN INVOKED in place of the Essential Commodities Act 1955 rather the law has been invoked to regulate packaged products including masks and sanitizers.
Hence, the correct choice was (d)
NOTE: The first two questions were based on legal/official understanding which is also demanded by this examination. And you should necessarily ensure that such type of questions when aske, your answers are correct. The note of caution is while reading news papers or current developments, you must look things from such perspective as well.
The third question can be solved by elimination method if you have knowledge of at least two statements.

Q.18 Which of the following is not correct about the term ‘lockdown’ that has been issued by the government of India to fight against the COVID-19?

(a) It is an informal, not a legal term and hence, has not been defined in any laws
(b) It has been declared by a presidential order
(c) It doesn’t restrict the Fundamental Rights of the citizens to seek constitutional remedies
(d) It is essential for enforcing social distancing in India
ANSWER.OPTION (B)
GENERAL EXPLANATIONS:
1. ABOUT LOCKDOWN:
I. It has been used by the governments largely for the first time to enforce the various types of guidelines issued by them under different laws/rules
II. Even if this term is often used by the governments and media but it is not mentioned specifically under any laws/rule-what exactly lockdown is?
III. The government of India has also not used this term in the guidelines, although it has been used by the PM in his announcements and hence, it remains like the term ‘national disaster’ a term used in general parlance.
IV. Since COVID-19 poses a novel type of challenge, the governments need special powers with flexibility in decision making but GOI doesn’t have any one law which can give powers, hence it decided to invoke the powers under the DMA 2005, First by declaring it ‘Notified Disaster’ and then invoking other sections of DMA to enforce nation-wide LOCKDOWN.
V. The LOCKDOWN is invoked by the executive order, NOT by presidential order
VI. But, officially, the issuance of LOCKDOWN order has not stopped constitutional remedies of people, although without specifically mentioning in orders, some fundamental rights have been restricted.

Q.19 The nationwide lockdown has been invoked by the government of India specifically under which of the following laws?

(I) The National Disaster Management Act 2005
(II) The Epidemic Diseases Act 1897
Select the correct answer using the code given below.
(a) 1 only
(b) 2 only
(c) Both 1 and 2
(d) Neither 1 nor 2
ANSWER. OPTION (A)
2. THE LEGAL BASIS FOR LOCKDOWN:
I. Special situation demands special powers. Unless government officially recognises a situation as special, it may not exercise special powers like invoking section 144.
II. The EDA (Epidemic Diseases Act) is related to health only and health is a state subject, in quasi-federal state, hence this law doesn’t adequately empower centre to enforce measures of all sorts(Section 2A of the Act empowers the union government to take necessary measures and prescribe regulations to deal with dangerous epidemic disease at ports of entry and exit).
III. As the EDA doesn’t provide for an exhaustive administrative set up for disaster preparedness, it was found wanting and GOI has invoked SECTION 69 of the Disaster Management Act, 2005, so that, it can tackle the disaster with institutional, procedural, financial and penal provisions of the Act.
IV. Hence, the nation-wide LOCKDOWN has been invoked by the Union under the DMA.
NOTE: But some states have invoked EDA for lockdown and other measures. The centre also uses the EDA for health related safety measures and guidelines. Therefore, although EDA is related to LOCKDOWN but it is not the MAIN basis for enforcing a NATION-WIDE LOCKDOWN.

Q.20 The Epidemic Diseases Act 1897 which deals with prevention of spread of diseases has been invoked by the union and state governments against COVID-19, is not related to which of the following terms:

(I) Social Distancing
(II) Lockdown
(III) Quarantine
(IV) Isolation
(V) Curfew
Select the correct answer using the code given below.
(a) 1 and 2 only
(b) 2 and 5 only
(c) 3 and 4
(d) 5 only
ANSWER.OPTION (D)
ABOUT THE EDA :
I. This law includes the first four but not the CURFEW. The curfew is invoked under Cr P C Section 144 under the special situation, which varies state to state.
II. Under the EDA, the provisions are about regulation of people movements, social distancing/gathering, etc. but the law doesn’t deal with how severely to enforce them.
III. It is the level of severity which will determine the invoking of section 144
IV. It means there is nation-wide lockdown but not curfew.
In the end, you need to understand that there are four main laws for effectively tackling COVID-19
1. Nation-wide lockdown and exhaustive administrative measures-DMA
2. Health related guidelines-like social distancing, quarantine, isolation-EDA
3. Legal enforcement by police-Cr P C
4. Penal Action-IPC
Note: There is also penal action under DMA.