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GK & Current Affairs Quiz: March 30-31, 2018

1. Who has been appointed as the new Director-General of the National Testing Agency (NTA)?
[A] Ritvik Ranjanam Pandey
[B] B Kishore
[C] Vineet Joshi
[D] Nitishwar Kumar

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Correct Answer: C [Vineet Joshi]
Notes:
Vineet Joshi, a 1992-batch IAS officer of the Manipur cadre, has been appointed as the new Director-General of the National Testing Agency (NTA) for a period of 5 years. The NTA under the Department of Higher Education is an autonomous and self-sustained premier testing organisation, which will conduct entrance examinations for higher educational institutions organised by the CBSE, AICTE and other bodies. The NTA will take over majority of the examinations conducted by the CBSE from 2019 in phased manner. NTA will start its operations with the Joint Engineering Entrance (JEE) and National Eligibility and Entrance Test (NEET UG) for admissions to medical/ dental programmes from 2019. The Union Cabinet had approved the setting up of the NTA in November 2017.
2. The Union Cabinet has approved formulation of a new Integrated Scheme for School Education by subsuming which of the following schemes?
[A] Sarva Shiksha Abhiyan
[B] Rashtriya Madhyamik Shiksha Abhiyan
[C] Teacher Education
[D] All of the above

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Correct Answer: D [All of the above]
Notes:
The Cabinet Committee on Economic Affairs (CCEA) has approved formulation of a new Integrated Scheme for School Education (ISSE) by subsuming Sarva Shiksha Abhiyan (SSA) , Rashtriya Madhyamik Shiksha Abhiyan (RMSA) and Teacher Education (TE) from April 1, 2018 to March 31, 2020. An estimated allocation of Rs 75,000 crore over the period has been approved which is a 20% increase over the current allocations. The vision of the scheme is to ensure inclusive and equitable quality education from nursery to senior secondary stage in accordance with the (United Nations’) Sustainable Development Goal for Education. The main emphasis of the integrated scheme is on improving quality of school education by focussing on the two T’s — Teacher and Technology.
3. The Union Cabinet has approved MoU between India and SACEP for cooperation on oil and chemical pollution in the South Asian Seas Region. What does ‘SACEP’ stands for?
[A] South Asian Campatibility Environment Programme
[B] South Asian Cooperative Environment Programme
[C] South Asian Connectivity Environment Programme
[D] South Asian Coercive Environment Programme

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Correct Answer: B [South Asian Cooperative Environment Programme]
Notes:
The Union Cabinet chaired by Prime Minister Narendra Modi has approved Memorandum of Understanding (MoU) between India and South Asian Cooperative Environment Programme (SACEP) for cooperation on the response to Oil and Chemical Pollution in the South Asian Seas Region. The MoU intends to promote closer cooperation between India and other maritime nations comprising the South Asian seas region namely Bangladesh, Maldives, Pakistan and Sri Lanka for protection and preservation of marine environment in the region. Indian Coast Guard (ICG) will be the Competent National Authority and national operational contact point for implementation of “Regional Oil Spill Contingency Plan” under the MoU and shall respond to oil and chemical spills on behalf of Government of India. The SACEP is an inter-governmental organisation established in 1982 by the South Asian governments to promote and support protection, management and enhancement of the environment in the region.
4. Who has been elected as the new President of Egypt?
[A] Moussa Mostafa Moussa
[B] El-Sayyid el-Badawi
[C] Abdel Fattah al-Sisi
[D] Ahmed Shafik Sisi

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Correct Answer: C [Abdel Fattah al-Sisi]
Notes:
Egyptian President Abdel Fattah al-Sisi has been re-elected for a second term with a sweeping majority in the 2018 Egyptian presidential election. Sisi got nearly 92% of the total votes. The President of Egypt is the head of state of Egypt. Under the various iterations of the Constitution of Egypt, the president is also the Supreme Commander of the Armed Forces and head of the executive branch of the Egyptian government.
5. Which union ministry has recently joined hands with Ministry of Power to support household electrification scheme ‘Saubhagya’?
[A] Ministry of Skill Development & Entrepreneurship
[B] Ministry of Information and Broadcasting
[C] Ministry of Rural Development
[D] Ministry of Women and Child Development

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Correct Answer: A [Ministry of Skill Development & Entrepreneurship]
Notes:
The Union Ministry of Power has partnered with the Ministry of Skill Development & Entrepreneurship to train the manpower in six states – Assam, Bihar, Madhya Pradesh, Jharkhand, Odisha and Uttar Pradesh – for speedy implementation of its household electrification scheme ‘SAUBHAGYA’ on March 27, 2018. The scheme is undertaken as a special project under the government’s Pradhan Mantri Kaushal Vikas Yojana (PMKVY). Around 47,000 Distribution Lineman-Multi Skills and 8,500 Technical Helpers will be trained to meet the requirement of power sector. The purpose of the SAUBHAGYA (Pradhan Mantri Sahaj Bijli Har Ghar Yojna) scheme is to achieve universal household electrification in all parts of the country in a time bound manner. Around 4 crore households are expected to get electricity connections under the scheme.
6. R K Dorendra Singh, who passed away recently, was the former Chief Minister of which state?
[A] Punjab
[B] Manipur
[C] Assam
[D] Nagaland

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Correct Answer: B [Manipur]
Notes:
Raj Kumar Dorendra Singh (83), the former Chief Minister of Manipur, has passed away at the Jawaharlal Nehru Institute of Medical Sciences Hospital in Imphal on March 31, 2018. In the past, he represented a number of political parties; currently he was with Manipur People’s Party (MPP). He had been chief minister of the state four times between 1974 to 1993. Before becoming the chief minister, he was the Speaker of Manipur Assembly.
7. Who has been appointed as the new Deputy Election Commissioner of India?
[A] Anurag Agarwal
[B] Mukul Ratra
[C] Girish C Hosur
[D] Chandra Bhushan Kumar

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Correct Answer: D [Chandra Bhushan Kumar]
Notes:
Chandra Bhushan Kumar, a 1995 batch IAS officer of union territories cadre, has been appointed as the new Deputy Election Commissioner as part of a major bureaucratic reshuffle affected today by the government. As per order issued by the Department of Personnel and Training (DoPT), he will hold the post for five years.
8. Which state government has recently raised retirement age of state govt employees from 60 to 62 years?
[A] Madhya Pradesh
[B] Rajasthan
[C] Punjab
[D] Uttar Pradesh

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Correct Answer: A [Madhya Pradesh]
Notes:
The Madhya Pradesh government has raised the retirement age of state government employees to 62 years from the current age of retirement is 60 years. The announcement was made by Chief Minister Shivraj Singh Chouhan. The MP Chief Minister cited promotion of general category employees as a reason to raise the age limit of these employees. The state already has bigger retirement age limit in case of teachers and doctors. The retirement age is 65 years for university/ college teachers and doctors (specialists), while for the school teachers it is 62.
9. Who has been appointed as the new Joint Secretary of 15th Finance Commission of India?
[A] Krishna Bahadur Singh
[B] Ravi Kota
[C] Anoop Singh
[D] Sanjay Adlakha

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Correct Answer: B [Ravi Kota]
Notes:
Ravi Kota, the 1993 batch IAS officer of Assam- Meghalaya, has been appointed Joint Secretary of 15th Finance Commission under the Department of Economic Affairs (DEA). Presently, he is posted as Principal Secretary in Government of Assam-Meghalaya. The Finance Commission, set up in 1951 under Article 280 of the Constitution, basically decides how revenue has to be distributed between the Centre and the States. In addition, the Commission also decides the principles on which grants-in-aid will be given to the States. The 15th Finance Commission was constituted on November 27, 2017 and is headed by former Revenue Secretary Rajya Sabha MP N.K. Singh. The panel also includes Shaktikanta Das, former Economic Affairs Secretary and Anoop Singh, adjunct professor at Georgetown University. This Commission is slated to submit its recommendations by October 31, 2019. The recommendations, to be observed for a period of five years, will kick in from April 1, 2020.
10. The Rangit dam is build across which tributary of Tista River in Sikkim?
[A] Rangpo River
[B] Rangit River
[C] Lachung River
[D] Ringyong Chhu River

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Correct Answer: B [Rangit River]
Notes:
The Rangit Dam is a run-of-the-river power project on the Ranjit River, a major tributary of the Tista River, in the South Sikkim district of Sikkim. The dam is 45 metres high concrete gravity structure of 100 metres length. The reservoir created behind the dam has a storage capacity of 1,175,000 cubic metres. The average annual power generation from the 60 MW (3×20 MW) project is 340 GWh with firm power of 39 MW.