GK & Current Affairs Quiz: September 12, 2018
First Published: September 13, 2018 | Last Updated:October 13, 2018
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[A] Constitutional economics
[B] Environmental economics
[C] Agricultural economics
[D] Monetary economics
Prof. Vijay Shankar Vyas (87), the Padma Bhushan awardee and noted agricultural economist, has passed away in Jaipur, Rajasthan on September 12, 2018. He had held several prestigious, professional and leadership positions in national and international organisations. The economist was the director of the IIM Ahmedabad and the Institute of Development Studies (IDS) of Jaipur. He was also a senior advisor in the World Bank’s agriculture and rural development department. Beside this, Prof. Vyas also remained the vice president of the Rajasthan planning board.
[A] Rajiv Gauba
[B] S S Ahluwalia
[C] Ajay Prakash Sawhney
[D] Ramesh Abhishek
The Government of India (GoI) has set up a group of secretaries to look into the issues raised on some proposals of the draft e-commerce policy. The group will be chaired by Ramesh Abhishek, the secretary in the Department of Industrial Policy and Promotion (DIPP). The development comes at a time when the DIPP has effectively ruled out FDI in inventory based ecommerce models. As per draft e-commerce policy, any group company of an online retailer or marketplace may not be allowed to directly or indirectly influence the price or sale of products and services on its platform, a move that could completely restrict e-tailers from giving deep discounts. The draft has also suggested introduction of a pre-set timeframe for offering differential pricing or deep discounts by e-commerce players to customers. Further, the draft recommended 49% FDI in inventory-based business-to-customer e-commerce model. Currently, FDI in such businesses is prohibited and it is allowed only in the marketplace model.
The India Post Payments Bank (IPPB) has partnered with Financial Software and Systems (FSS) to create payments network for unorganized retail. FSS is a payments technology company that enables micro-merchants to accept payments online, or via Unified Payments Interface (UPI), Quick-Response (QR) codes, Aadhaar and IPPB accounts. FSS will also provide merchant management and settlement solutions including on-boarding fee calculation, reconciliation and settlement. IPPB has been incorporated as a public sector company under the Department of Posts with 100% government equity and is governed by the Reserve Bank of India (RBI). IPPB offers a range of products such as savings and current accounts, money transfer, direct benefit transfer, bill and utility payments and enterprise and merchant payments. Customers are able to access these products and related services across various channels—counter services, micro-ATM, mobile banking app, text messages and phone calls.
[A] Himachal Pradesh
[C] Uttar Pradesh
The 14th edition of the joint military exercise “Yudh Abhyas 2018” will be conducted between India and United States in the foothills of Himalayas at Chaubattia in Uttarakhand from September 16 to 29. The exercise will simulate a scenario where both nations will work together in counter insurgency and counter terrorism environment in mountainous terrain under United Nation charter. The two week exercise will witness participation of about 350 personnel of the US Army and similar strength of the Indian Army. It will witness a Division Headquarter based Command Post Exercise, an Infantry Battalion carrying out Field Training Exercise and discussions on issues of mutual interest by experts of both countries. The training will culminate with a final validation exercise in which troops of both countries will jointly carry out an operation against terrorists in a fictitious but realistic setting.
[C] National Geographic
Actor R Madhavan will host the National Geographic’s new series ‘Mega Icons’, which examines the success stories of five prominent personalities. It is scheduled to premier on September 24. The five-part television series will feature episodes on former Indian President APJ Abdul Kalam, movie star and politician Kamal Haasan, Nobel laureate the Dalai Lama, Indian cricketer Virat Kohli and the first woman Indian Police Service officer, Kiran Bedi. Each episode would be a journey into the life of an iconic personality, with help of not only intimate interviews with the icons and their families but also through research and analysis by experts.
The Bhabha Atomic Research Centre (BARC) has recently re-commissioned an upgraded version of nuclear research reactor ‘Apsara-U’ with a higher capacity, which was shut down permanently in 2009 for revamp. The indigenously made reactor ‘Apsara-U’ uses plate type dispersion fuel elements made of Low Enriched Uranium (LEU). By virtue of higher neutron flux, this reactor will increase indigenous production or radio-isotopes for medical application by about 50% and would also be extensively used for research in nuclear physics, material science and radiation shielding. This development has re-emphasized the capability of Indian scientists and Engineers to build, complex facilities for health care, science education and research. Apsara was the Asia’s first research reactor that was made operational in Trombay campus of BARC on 4th August 1956. The design of the pool-type reactor using enriched uranium fuel was conceptualised in 1955 by Dr Homi Bhabha himself. The name ‘Apsara’ was coined by then Prime Minister Jawaharlal Nehru.
[A] Andhra Pradesh
The Arvind Kejriwal-led Aam Aadmi Party (AAP) has rolled out its ambitious project to deliver public services at the doorstep of residents. It’s first of kind service in the country for doorstep delivery of essential government services. From driving licences to marriage certificates, Delhiites can now apply for 40 government documents to be delivered at their homes for a fee of Rs. 50 per service. The applicant would have to call 1076 and fix an appointment with a mobile sahayak, who will go to their home and help with filling forms, payment of fees and collection of documents. The mobile sahayak would then submit the documents at the government office concerned, which would post the certificate or licence once issued. VFS Global, one of the biggest visa and passport service providers in the world, has been given the contract to run the project for three years. The number of services to be home-delivered would be increased to 100 within 3 months.
NITI Aayog has collaborated with Intel and Tata Institute of Fundamental Research (TIFR) to set up a Model International Center for Transformative Artificial Intelligence (ICTAI). The collaboration aims to bring together fundamental and applied research, innovation and technology development to solve important problems.The ICTAI will work towards developing and deploying artificial intelligence based research projects in critical domains such as health care, agriculture, smart cities and mobility. The initiative is part of NITI Aayog’s National Strategy for Artificial Intelligence discussion paper that focuses on establishing ICTAI through private sector collaboration.
The 13th edition of Indo-Mongolian joint military exercise “Nomadic Elephant 2018” has commenced at Mongolian Armed Forces (MAF) Five Hills Training Area in Ullanbaatar on September 10. During the 12 days long exercise, both sides will jointly train, plan and execute a series of well developed tactical drills for neutralisation of likely threats that may be encountered in urban warfare scenario. Experts from both sides will also hold detailed discussions to share their experience on varied topics for mutual benefits. Exercise Nomadic Elephant is an annual, bilateral exercise since 2006 which is designed to strengthen the partnership between Indian Army and Mongolian Armed Forces. The exercise will see them improve their tactical and technical skills in joint counter insurgency and counter terrorist operations in rural and urban scenario under United Nations mandate.
[D] New Delhi
On September 11, India, Iran and Afghanistan held their first tripartite meeting in Kabul during which implementation of the Chabahar port project and a host of other issues discussed. The Indian delegation was led by Foreign Secretary Vijay Gokhale while the Iranian team was headed by Deputy Foreign Minister Abbas Araghchi. Afghan Deputy Foreign Minister Hekmat Khalil Karzai chaired the meeting. The meeting focused on consolidating economic cooperation, including Chabahar, as well as enhancing cooperation on counter-terrorism, counter-narcotics, and continuing support to the peace and reconciliation process that is led and owned by Afghanistan. As per officials, the three sides agreed to hold the next round of consultation in 2019 at an appropriate time in India.The Chabahar port is being considered a gateway to golden opportunities for trade by India, Iran and Afghanistan with central Asian countries besides ramping up trade among the three countries in the wake of Pakistan denying transit access to New Delhi.
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