Current based PRELIMS QUESTION 8 July 2020

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1. Consider the following statements regarding the Variable Rate Term Repo.
1. It is called variable rate repo because the interest rate is varied depending upon the auction rate.
2. Under the RBI’s new restructured liquidity framework, the term repo is named as Variable Rate Term Repo.
3. In India, the term repo has different durations and usual durations are 7 days, 14 days and 28 days.
4. This facility is available for commercial banks only when the RBI notifies it, and it is usually available twice in a week.
Which of the statement(s) given above is/are correct?
(a) 1, 2 and 3 only
(b) 2, 3 and 4 only
(c) 1, 3 and 4 only
(d) All of the above
Answer-d
Explanation
Variable Rate Term Repo
Under the RBI’s new restructured liquidity framework, the term repo is named as Variable Rate Term Repo.
It is called variable rate repo because the interest rate is varied depending upon the auction rate.
In India, the term repo has different durations. The usual durations are 7 days, 14 days and 28 days. Overall, the objective of term repo is to ensure liquidity in the banking system.
The utility of term repo
If banks need funds for relatively more duration, like three day, seven day etc., the RBI will announce a term repo auction by intimating a total amount. But term repo is very different from of repo in its functioning.
Firstly, repo is available from Monday to Friday. But in the case of term repo, the facility is available for commercial banks only when the RBI notifies it, and it is usually available twice in a week.
What will be the amount of funds given under term repo?
In the case of term repo, a bank should participate in an auction to get money. Here, the total auction amount provided by the RBI for the entire banking system will be notified previously.
What will be the interest rate?
Regarding interest rate under term repo, it is determined through the auction.
A cut off rate above the repo rate is set for the auction. This means that banks can’t offer lower interest rate than this minimum/repo rate.
When term repo is declared?
Whenever the RBI assess that there is the need for funds for three to 28 days for the banking system, it notifies the term repo auction. Similarly, the central bank also announces the amount it would like to provide to the banks in total.

2. Consider the following statements regarding the Government of India Act, 1919.
1. It was instituted in the British Indian polity to introduce the Diarchy, i.e., rule of two which means executive councillors and popular ministers.
2. It introduced, for the first time, bicameralism , direct elections and portfolio system in the country.
3. It extended the principle of communal representation by providing separate electorates for Sikhs, Indian Christians, Anglo-Indians and Europeans.
4. It provided for the establishment of a public service commission. Therefore, a Central Public Service Commission was set up in 1926 for recruiting civil servants.
Which of the statement(s) given above is/are correct?
(a) 1, 2 and 3 only
(b) 2, 3 and 4 only
(c) 1, 3 and 4 only
(d) All of the above
Answer-c
Explanation-
Government of India Act, 1919 (Montagu-Chelmsford Reforms)
Government of India Act, 1919 was also known as Montagu-Chelmsford Reforms which came into force in 1921.
It was instituted in the British Indian polity to introduce the Diarchy, i.e., rule of two which means executive councillors and popular ministers.
During the World War Britain and her allies had said that they were fighting the war for the freedom of nations. Many Indian leaders believed that after the war was over, India would be given Swaraj. The British government however had no intention of conceding the demands of the Indian people. Changes were introduced in the administrative system as a result of the Montagu-Chelmsford Reforms, called the Government of India Act, 1919.
Features of the Act
 It relaxed the central control over the provinces by demarcating and separating the central and provincial subjects. The central and provincial legislatures were authorised to make laws on their respective list of subjects. However, the structure of government continued to be centralised and unitary.
 It further divided the provincial subjects into two parts—transferred and reserved. The transferred subjects were to be administered by the governor with the aid of ministers responsible to the legislative Council. The reserved subjects, on the other hand, were to be administered by the governor and his executive council without being responsible to the legislative Council. This dual scheme of governance was known as ‘Dyarchy’.
 It introduced, for the first time, bicameralism and direct elections in the country. Thus, the Indian Legislative Council was replaced by a bicameral legislature consisting of an Upper House (Council of State) and a Lower House (Legislative Assembly). The majority of members of both the Houses were chosen by direct election.
 It required that the three of the six members of the Viceroy’s executive Council (other than the commander-in-chief) were to be Indian.
 It extended the principle of communal representation by providing separate electorates for Sikhs, Indian Christians, Anglo-Indians and Europeans.
 It granted franchise to a limited number of people on the basis of property, tax or education.
 It created a new office of the High Commissioner for India in London and transferred to him some of the functions hitherto performed by the Secretary of State for India.
 It provided for the establishment of a public service commission. Hence, a Central Public Service Commission was set up in 1926 for recruiting civil servants.
 It separated, for the first time, provincial budgets from the Central budget and authorised the provincial legislatures to enact their budgets.
 It provided for the appointment of a statutory commission to inquire into and report on its working after ten years of its coming into force.
https://shodhganga.inflibnet.ac.in/bitstream/10603/174777/9/09_chapter%203.pdf

3. Consider the following statements regarding the Congress split in 1907.
1. The Congress session was held in 1907 at Surat, on the banks of the river Tapti in which Congress split was happened.
2. The Extremist camp was led by Lal, BAL and Pal and the moderate camp was led by Gopal Krishna Gokhle.
3. Dadabhai Nouroji was elected as President in this Congress session.
Which of the statements given above are correct?
(a) 2 and 3 only
(b) 1 and 2 only
(c) 1 and 3 only
(d) 1, 2 and 3
Answer-b
Explanation-
Congress split
The split at Surat took place in the year 1907 in the month of December.
Around this time, revolutionary terrorism had gained momentum. These 2 events were seemingly connected.
In December 1905, at the Benaras session of the Indian National Congress presided over by Gokhale, the Moderate-Extremist differences came to the front.
In 1907 the Surat session was held at the bank of the Tapti River in Surat. The Extremist camp was led by Lal BAL Pal and the moderate camp was led by Gopal Krishna Gokhle.
Here congress met in an atmosphere of anger and resentment. Dr. Rash Behari Ghosh was elected in the session but extremists had an objection to this election. Initially the extremists protested against the election but soon they accepted Dr. Rash Behari Ghosh as the president and offered to cooperate.
But the session was suspended. Congress got split. By the time, the next session of Congress was held in Madras in 1908 under Dr. Rash Behari Ghosh, it was the extremist camp that was facing the Lathis and arrest by the British Government who was now in its comfortable position as Congress was divided.

4. Consider the following statements regarding the Bio-medical Waste (BMW) Management.
1. Biomedical waste in India has been classified into four categories based on color code-type of waste and treatment options.
2. The use of chlorinated plastic bags, gloves, blood bags, etc. should be gradually stopped and this phasing out should be within 2 years from the date of notification of the rules of 2016 in India.
Which of the statement(s) given above is/are correct?
(a) 1 only
(b)  2 only
(c) Both 1 and 2
(d) Neither 1 nor 2
Answer-c
Explanation-
Bio-medical Waste (BMW) Management
BMW is any waste produced during the diagnosis, treatment, or immunization of human or animal research activities pertaining thereto or in the production or testing of biological or in health camps. It follows the cradle to grave approach which is characterization, quantification, segregation, storage, transport, and treatment of BMW.
The basic principle of good BMW practice is based on the concept of 3Rs, namely, reduce, recycle, and reuse.
The best BMW management (BMWM) methods aim at avoiding generation of waste or recovering as much as waste as possible, rather than disposing. Therefore, the various methods of BMW disposal, according to their desirability, are prevented, reduce, reuse, recycle, recover, treat, and lastly dispose. Hence, the waste should be tackled at source rather than “end of pipe approach.
BMW treatment and disposal facility means any facility wherein treatment, disposal of BMW or processes incidental to such treatment and disposal is carried out.
Only about 10%–25% of BMW is hazardous, and the remaining 75%–95% is nonhazardous. The hazardous part of the waste presents physical, chemical, and/or microbiological risk to the general population and health-care workers associated with handling, treatment, and disposal of waste.
The first edition of WHO handbook on safe management of wastes from health-care activities known as “The Blue Book” came out in 1999. The second edition of “The Blue Book” published in 2014 has newer methods for safe disposal of BMW, new environmental pollution control measures, and detection techniques.
In addition, new topics such as health-care waste management in emergencies, emerging pandemics, drug-resistant bacteria, and climate changes were covered in the second edition.
International Agreement and Conventions
There are three international agreements and conventions. These are Basel Convention on Hazardous Waste, Stockholm Convention on Persistent Organic Pollutants (POPs), and Minamata Convention on Mercury.
Basel Convention on Hazardous Waste is the most inclusive global environmental treaty on hazardous and other wastes. It has 170 member countries, and its objectives are to protect human health and the environment against the adverse effects resulting from the generation, management, and disposal of hazardous wastes, specifically clinical wastes from health care in hospitals, health centers, and clinics.
Stockholm Convention on POPs (the Stockholm Convention) is a global treaty to protect human health and the environment from POPs (POPs – dioxins and furans). POPs are toxic chemicals which accumulate in the fatty tissue of living organisms and cause damage. These chemicals are formed by medical waste incinerators and other combustion processes. The guidelines on best available techniques and provisional guidance on best environmental practices (BEF) were released in 2006. It deals with BEP including source reduction, segregation, resource recovery and recycling, training, and proper collection and transport.
Minamata Convention on Mercury is a global treaty to protect human health and the environment from the adverse effects of mercury. On October 10, 2014, in Japan, more than 90 nations signed the first new global convention on environment and health. This treaty includes the phasing out of certain medical equipment in health-care services, including mercury-containing medical items such as thermometers and blood pressure device.
Biomedical Waste Situation in India
In July 1998, first BMW rules were notified by Government of India, by the erstwhile Ministry of Environment and forest.
In India, BMW problem was further compounded by the presence of scavengers who sort out open, unprotected health-care waste with no gloves, masks, or shoes for recycling, and second, reuse of syringe without appropriate sterilization.
During 2002–2004, International Clinical Epidemiology Network explored the existing BMW practices, setup, and framework in primary, secondary, and tertiary health care facility (HCF) in India across 20 states.
They found that around 82% of primary, 60% of secondary, and 54% of tertiary HCFs in India had no credible BMWM system. In 2009, around 240 people in Gujarat, India contracted hepatitis B following reuse of unsterilized syringes.
This and many more studies shows that despite India being among the first country to initiate measures for safe disposal of BMW, there is an urgent need to take action for strengthening the existing system capacity, increase the funding and commitment toward safe disposal of BMW.
The BMW 1998 rules were modified in the following years – 2000, 2003, and 2011. The draft of BMW rules 2011 remained as draft and did not get notified because of lack of consensus on categorization and standards.
Now Ministry of Environment, Forest and Climate change in March 2016 have amended the BMWM rules. These new rules have increased the coverage, simplified the categorization and authorization while improving the segregation, transportation and disposal methods to decrease environmental pollution. It has four schedule, five forms and eighteen rules.
Salient Features of Biomedical Waste Rules 2016
The scope of the rules has been expanded to include various health camps such as vaccination camps, blood donation camps, and surgical camps.
Duties of the occupier of HCFs have been revised. Occupier is the person having administrative control over the HCF that is generating BMW.
Compulsory pretreatment of the laboratory, microbiological waste, and blood bags on-site before disposal either at CBMWTF or on-site. The method of sterilization/disinfection should be in accordance with National AIDS Control Organization (NACO) or WHO.
The use of chlorinated plastic bags, gloves, blood bags, etc. should be gradually stopped and this phasing out should be within 2 years from the date of notification of these rules.
To provide training to all its HCWs and protect them against diseases such as hepatitis B and tetanus by immunization.
Liquid waste to be separated at source by pretreatment before mixing with other liquid waste.
To set up a barcode system for BMW containing that is to be sent out of the premises for treatment and disposal.
All major accidents including accidents caused by fire hazards, blasts, during handling of BMW, and remedial action taken by the prescribed authority should be reported.
The existing incinerator should be upgraded/modified to achieve the new standard within 2 years from the date of this notification.
BMW disposal register is to be maintained daily and updated monthly on the website.
The duties of the operator of a common biomedical waste treatment and disposal facility (CBMWTF) have been increased. They should assist in training of HCW from where the waste is being collected. Furthermore, there should be barcoding and global positioning system established for handling of BMW within 1 year. Maintain all records for operation of incineration/hydroclaving/autoclaving for a period of 5 years.
The segregation, packaging, transportation, and storage of BMW have been improved. Biomedical waste has been classified into four categories based on color code-type of waste and treatment options. In addition, untreated human anatomical waste, animal anatomical waste, soiled waste, and biotechnology waste should not be stored beyond a period of 48 h. In case, there is a need to store beyond 48 h, the occupier should take all appropriate measures to ensure that the waste does not adversely affect human health and the environment (no permission to be obtained).
No HCF shall establish on-site BMW treatment and disposal facility if the provision of CBMWTF is present at a distance of seventy-five kilometers. If no CBMWTF is available, the occupier shall set up requisite BMW treatment facility such as incinerator, autoclave or microwave, shredder after taking prior authorization from the prescribed authority. After confirming treatment of plastics and glassware by autoclaving or microwaving followed by mutilation/shredding, these recyclables should be given to authorized recyclers.
Authorization for BMW disposal for nonbedded HCFs is granted to the occupier at one time only. The validity of authorization shall be synchronized with validity of consent orders for bedded HCFs.
Standards for emission from incinerators have been modified to be more environmental friendly. These are permissible limit for SPM-50 mg/nm3; residence time in secondary chamber of incinerator – two seconds; standard for dioxin and furans – 0.1 ng TEQ/Nm3.
Ministry of Environment, Forest, and Climate change will monitor the implementation of rules yearly. The responsibility of each state to check for compliance will be done by setting up district-level committee under the chairpersonship of District Collector or District Magistrate or Additional District Magistrate. In addition, every 6 months, this committee shall submit its report to the State Pollution Control Board.
https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC5784295/

5. Consider the following statements regarding the Sodium Hypochlorite (NaOCl).
1. It is a compound that can be effectively used for water purification.
2. It is used in agriculture, chemical industries, food industries, glass industries, paper industries, pharmaceutical industries, and waste disposal industries.
3. Sodium hypochlorite solution is a weak base that is inflammable.
Which of the statement(s) given above is/are correct?
(a) 2 and 3 only
(b) 1 and 2 only
(c) 1 and 3 only
(d) 1, 2 and 3
Answer-d
Explanation-
Sodium Hypochlorite (NaOCl)
Sodium hypochlorite (NaOCl) is a compound that can be effectively used for water purification. It is used on a large scale for surface purification, bleaching, odor removal and water disinfection.
What are the characteristics of sodium hypochlorite?
Sodium hypochlorite is a clear, slightly yellowish solution with a characteristic odor.
As a bleaching agent for domestic use it usually contains 5% sodium hypochlorite. If it is more concentrated, it contains a concentration 10-15% sodium hypochlorite (with a pH of around 13, it burns and is corrosive).
Sodium hypochlorite is unstable. This also happens when sodium hypochlorite comes in contact with acids, sunlight, certain metals and poisonous and corrosive gasses, including chlorine gas. Sodium hypochlorite is a strong oxidator and reacts with flammable compounds and reductors. Sodium hypochlorite solution is a weak base that is inflammable.
These characteristics must be kept in mind during transport, storage and use of sodium hypochlorite.
What are the applications of sodium hypochlorite?
Sodium hypochlorite is used on a large scale. For example in agriculture, chemical industries, paint- and lime industries, food industries, glass industries, paper industries, pharmaceutical industries, synthetics industries and waste disposal industries. In the textile industry sodium hypochlorite is used to bleach textile. It is sometimes added to industrial waste water. This is done to reduce odors. Hypochlorite neutralizes sulphur hydrogen gas (SH) and ammonia (NH3). It is also used to detoxify cyanide baths in metal industries. Hypochlorite can be used to prevent algae and shellfish growth in cooling towers. In water treatment, hypochlorite is used to disinfect water. In households, hypochlorite is used frequently for the purification and disinfection of the house.
What are the health effects of sodium hypochlorite?
There is no threshold value for to sodium hypochlorite exposure. Various health effects occur after exposure to sodium hypochlorite. People are exposed to sodium hypochlorite by inhalation of aerosols. This causes coughing and a sore throat. After swallowing sodium hypochlorite the effects are stomach ache, a burning sensation, coughing, diarrhea, a sore throat and vomiting. Sodium hypochlorite on skin or eyes causes redness and pain. After prolonged exposure, the skin can become sensitive. Sodium hypochlorite is poisonous for water organisms. It is mutagenic and very toxic when it comes in contact with ammonium salts.
What are the advantages and disadvantages of sodium hypochlorite use?
Sodium hypochlorite as a disinfectant has the following advantages:
It can easily and be stored and transported when it is produced on-site. Dosage is simple. Transport and storage of sodium hypochlorite are safe. Sodium hypochlorite is as effective as chlorine gas for disinfection. Sodium hypochlorite produces residual disinfectant.
Disadvantages
Sodium hypochlorite is a dangerous and corrosive substance. While working with sodium hypochlorite, safety measures have to be taken to protect workers and the environment. Sodium hypochlorite should not come in contact with air, because that will cause it to disintegrate. Both sodium hypochlorite and chlorine do not deactivate Giardia Lambia and Cryptosporidium.
https://www.lenntech.com/processes/disinfection/chemical/disinfectants-sodium-hypochlorite.htm