Current based PRELIMS QUESTION 1 April 2020

1. Consider the following statements about Arunachal Pradesh.
1. Arunachal Pradesh became a full-fledged State on 20th February, 1987.
2. The major rivers of the state are the Brahmaputra and its tributaries—the Dibang, Lohit, Subansiri, Kameng, and Tirap.
3. Most of its terrain consists of deep valleys flanked by highland plateaus and ridges that rise to the peaks of the Great Himalayas.
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

 

 

  1. Answer-d
    Explanation
    History and Geography
    Arunachal Pradesh became a full-fledged State on 20th February, 1987. Till 1972, it was known as the North-East Frontier Agency (NEFA). It gained the Union Territory status on 20 January 1972 and renamed as Arunachal Pradesh.
    On 15th August 1975 an elected Legislative Assembly was constituted and the first Council of Ministers assumed office. The first general election to the Assembly was held in February 1978.
    Administratively, the State is divided into sixteen districts. Capital of the State is Itanagar in Papum Para district. Itanagar is named after Ita fort meaning fort of bricks, built in 14th century AD.
    Arunachal Pradesh finds mention in the literature of Kalika Purana and Mahabharata. This place is the Prabhu Mountains of the Puranas.
    It was here that sage Parashuram atoned for his sin, sage Vyasa meditated, King Bismaka founded his kingdom and Lord Krishna married his Consort Rukmini.
    The widely scattered archaeological remains at different places in Arunachal Pradesh bear testimony to its rich cultural heritage.
    Festivals
    Folk Dance of Arunachal Pradesh
    Some of the important festivals of the State are: Mopin and Solung of the Adis, Lossar of the Monpas and Boori-boot of the Hill Miris, Sherdukpens, Dree of the Apatanis, Si-Donyi of the Tagins, Reh of the ldu-Mishmis, Nyokum of the Nishs, etc. Animal sacrifice is a common ritual in most festivals.
    Agriculture and Horticulture
    Agriculture is the mainstay of the people of Arunachal Pradesh, and had mainly depended on jhum cultivation. Encouragement is being given to the cultivation of cash crops like potatoes and horticulture crops like apples, oranges and pineapples.
    Industries and Minerals
    For conservation and explorations of vast minerals, the APMDTCL were set up in 1991. Namchik-Namphuk coal fields are taken up by APMDTCL. Namchik-Namphuk coal fields are taken up by the APMDTCL. To provide training to craftsmen in different trades, there are two Industrial Training Institutes at Roing and Daporijo.
    Tourist Centres
    Places of tourist interest are: Tawang, Dirang, Bomdila, Tipi, Itanagar Malinithan, Likabali, Pasighat, Along, Tezu, Miao, Roing, Daporijo Namdapha, Bhismaknagar, Parashurarn Kund and Khonsa.
    Panchayati Raj
    The Arunachal Pradesh State Election Commission in support of State Govt. has successfully conducted and completed Panchayati Raj Elections in the State in the month of May 2008 for speedy development in the village and grass root level.
    The major rivers of the state are the Brahmaputra and its tributaries—the Dibang [Sikang], Lohit, Subansiri, Kameng, and Tirap. The Brahmaputra (known as the Tsangpo in the Tibet Autonomous Region of China and as the Dihang [Siang] in Arunachal Pradesh) flows eastward from Mansarovar Lake in Tibet before dipping south through the Himalayas into north-central Arunachal Pradesh. The river then winds its way southward across the length of the state, cutting a narrow, steep-sided gorge into the mountainous terrain. The Brahmaputra finally emerges onto the northern edge of the Assam plains—a finger of which extends into southeastern Arunachal Pradesh—near the town of Pasighat. It is joined by the Dibang and the Lohit rivers a short distance beyond Pasighat, just south of the border between Assam and Arunachal Pradesh. West of the Brahmaputra, the Subansiri is the only tributary to cross the main Himalayan ranges. The Kameng and other rivers in the area rise on the southern flanks of the mountains. The Tirap River drains the southeastern part of the state.
    Most of Arunachal Pradesh’s terrain consists of deep valleys flanked by highland plateaus and ridges that rise to the peaks of the Great Himalayas. The state encompasses three broad physiographic regions. Farthest south is a series of foothills, similar in type to the Siwalik Range (a narrow sub-Himalayan belt stretching across much of northern India), that ascend from the Assam plains to elevations of 1,000 to 3,300 feet (300 to 1,000 metres). Those hills rise rapidly northward to the Lesser Himalayas, where some ridges and spurs reach 10,000 feet (3,000 metres). Farther north, along the Tibetan border, lie the main ranges of the Great Himalayas, where Kangto, the highest peak in the state, dominates the landscape, reaching about 23,260 feet (7,090 metres).

2. Consider the following statements about State Election Commission (SEC).
1. It was constituted under Article 243K of the Constitution of India.
2. Part-IX and Part-IXA of the constitution of India cover constitutions of Panchayats and Municipality including their elections by the SEC.
3. ECI and SEC are independent of each other and draw powers from different laws.
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

 

2. Answer-d
Explanation


State Election Commission
SEC was constituted under Article 243K of the Constitution of India. It has been entrusted with the function of conducting free, fair and impartial elections to the local bodies in the state.
Part-IX and Part-IXA were incorporated through the amendment no.73 and no.74 in the constitution of India covering provisions regarding the Panchayats and Municipalities respectively. These parts cover constitutions of Panchayats and Municipality including their elections by the SEC.
SEC carries out activities related to preparation of wards / election division as per local bodies rules, decision of boundaries and distribution of seats along with preparation of voters list for the local bodies organizations like Gram Panchayat, Taluka and District Panchayat / Municipality and Municipal Corporation of the state and conducting general / mid-term / bye-elections and supervising them. For all these functions, the authority is vested in the SEC under Article 243 K under which it has been empowered with Superintendence, Direction and Control of elections of local bodies.
As per the election rules of such local self government organizations, District Election Officer for Panchayat elections, District Municipal Election Officer for elections of municipality and City Election Officer for the elections of municipal corporation have been appointed. State election commission has empowered the collectors for all activities related to elections of Gram Panchayat where as the delimitation and allocation of seats for various reserved categories, voter’s list, election programs and other related activities are carrying out by SEC.

The similarities between the ECI and SECs
Like the removal of a Chief Election Commissioner, the SEC can only be removed via impeachment.
In 2006, the Supreme Court emphasised the two constitutional authorities enjoy the same powers.
In Kishan Singh Tomar vs Municipal Corporation of the City of Ahmedabad, the Supreme Court directed that state governments should abide by orders of the SECs during the conduct of the panchayat and municipal elections, just like they follow the instructions of the EC during Assembly and Parliament polls.
Article 243-O of the Constitution bars interference in poll matters set in motion by the SECs; Article 329 bars interference in such matters set in motion by the EC. Only after the polls are over can the SECs’ decisions or conduct be questioned through an election petition.
The differences between the ECI and SECs
Set up in 1950, the EC is charged with the responsibility of conducting polls to the offices of the President and Vice President of India, to Parliament, and to the state Assemblies and Legislative Councils.
The SECs, which were appointed in each state more than four decades after the EC was set up, supervise municipal and panchayat elections.
Although the two authorities have a similar mandate, they are independent of each other and draw powers from different laws. Each SEC is governed by a separate state Act etc.
Aricle 243K – Elections to the panchayats
His conditions of service and tenure of office shall also be determined by the governor.
He shall not be removed from the office except in the manner and on the grounds prescribed for the removal of the judge of the state high court (1).
Additional information:
His conditions of service shall not be varied to his disadvantage after his appointment.
The superintendence, direction and control of the preparation of electoral rolls and the conduct of all elections to the panchayats shall be vested in the state election commission.
The state legislature may make provision with respect to a matters relating to elections to the panchayats.

3. Consider the following statements with respect to the National Human Rights Commission.
1. The chairman and members of NHRC are appointed by the President on the recommendations of Chief Justice of India.
2. NHRC was established in conformity with the Paris Principles.
3. It can only make recommendations, without the power to enforce decisions.
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

 

3. Answer-a
Explanation
National Human Rights Commission (NHRC)
NHRC, India has been set up by an Act of Parliament under the Protection of Human Rights Act, 1993 for the protection and promotion of human rights.
The functions of the Commission as stated in Section 12 of the Act and apart from enquiry into complaints of violation of human rights or negligence in the prevention of such violation by a public servant, the Commission also studies treaties and international instruments on human rights and make recommendations for their effective implementation to the Government.
The Commission is responsible for spreading of human rights awareness amongst the masses and encouraging the efforts of all stake holders in the field of human rights literacy not only at the national level but at international level too.
NHRC is a unique institution because it is one of the few National Human Rights Institutes (NHRIs) in the world whose Chairperson is the former Chief Justice of the country. The world looks at NHRC of India as a role model in promoting and monitoring effective implementation of promotion and protection of human rights.
Section 2(1) (d) of the PHR Act defines Human Rights as the rights relating to life, liberty, equality and dignity of the individual guaranteed by the Constitution or embodied in the International Covenants and enforceable by courts in India.
The NHRC, India plays an active role in coordinating with other NHRIs of the world to enhance awareness from the perspective of human rights. It has also hosted delegations from UN Bodies and other National Human Rights Commissions as well as members of civil society, lawyers and political and social activists from many countries.
What are the provisions of the Act?
Composition of NHRC: The chairperson of the NHRC is a person who has been a Chief Justice of the Supreme Court.
The Act provides for 2 persons having knowledge of human rights to be appointed as members of the NHRC.
Members of the NHRC: The chairpersons of the National Commission for Scheduled Castes, National Commission for Scheduled Tribes, and National Commission for Women.
Chairperson of SHRC: A person who has been a Chief Justice of a High Court.
Term of office: The chairperson and members of the NHRC and SHRC will hold office for 5 years or till the age of 70 years, whichever is earlier.
The Act allows for the reappointment of members of the NHRC and SHRCs for a period of 5 years.
Powers of Secretary-General: The Act provides for a Secretary-General of the NHRC and a Secretary of a SHRC, who exercise powers as may be delegated to them.
The Protection of Human Rights (Amendment) Bill, 2019 What are the amendments made?
Composition of NHRC: The Bill provides that a person who has been Chief Justice of the Supreme Court, or a Judge of the Supreme Court can be the chairperson of the NHRC.
The Bill allows 3 members to be appointed, of which at least one will be a woman.
Members of the NHRC: The chairpersons of the National Commission for Scheduled Castes, National Commission for Scheduled Tribes, and National Commission for Women, National Commission for Backward Classes, the National Commission for the Protection of Child Rights, and the Chief Commissioner for Persons with Disabilities.
Chairperson of SHRC: The Bill provides for a person who has been Chief Justice or Judge of a High Court can be chairperson of a SHRC.
Term of office: The Bill reduces the term of office to 3 years or till the age of 70 years, whichever is earlier.
The Bill removes the five-year limit for reappointment found in the act.
Powers of Secretary-General: The Bill allows the Secretary-General and Secretary to exercise all administrative and financial powers (except judicial functions), subject to the respective chairperson’s control.
Union Territories: The Bill provides that the central government may confer on a SHRC human rights functions being discharged by Union Territories. Functions relating to human rights in the case of Delhi will be dealt with by the NHRC.
Facts
It is a statutory autonomous body created under provisions of Protection of Human Rights Act, 1993.
In 1993, the UN General Assembly adopted the Paris Principles on Human Rights.
This led to the constitution of national human rights institutions in almost every country.
NHRC was established in conformity with the Paris Principles.
It can only make recommendations, without the power to enforce decisions.
Selection Committee – Tasked with appointing the chairperson and the members, the committee is dominated by the ruling party.
It consists of the PM, Home minister, Leaders of the Opposition in both houses, the Speaker and the Deputy-Chairman.
‘President’ appoints the chairperson and members of the NHRC on the recommendation of a committee.

4. Consider the following statements regarding the Hindustani and Carnatic music systems.
1. Carnatic Music originated in the Bhakti movement, while Hindustani music originated during the Vedic period.
2. The main vocal forms of Hindustani music are Dhrupad, Khayal, Tarana, Thumri, Dadra, and Gazals. The Carnatic music embraces much creativity comprise of Alpana, Niraval, Kalpnaswaram and Ragam Thana Pallavi.
3. Both use a Tanpura or Drone with one or two notes to signify Pitch and base in Raga version.
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

 

 

4. Answer-d
Explanation-

 

5. With regarding to the Force majeure, consider the following statements.
1. It is related to the concept of an act of God, an event for which no party can be held accountable, such as a hurricane or a tornado and human actions, however, such as armed conflict.
2. A ‘force majeure’ situation refers to extraordinary events and circumstances beyond human control.
Which of the statements given above is/are correct?
(a) 1 only
(b) 2 only
(c) Both 1 and 2
(d) Neither 1 nor 2

5. Answer-c
Explanation-
The Finance Ministry of India said that the COVID-19 outbreak in China will be considered a ‘force majeure’ situation. Force majeure is a French term that literally means “greater force.”
A ‘force majeure’ situation refers to extraordinary events and circumstances beyond human control. It is related to the concept of an act of God, an event for which no party can be held accountable, such as a hurricane or a tornado.
Force majeure also encompasses human actions, however, such as armed conflict.
Force majeure refers to a clause that is included in contracts to remove liability for natural and unavoidable catastrophes that interrupt the expected course of events and restrict participants from fulfilling obligations.
The declaration of a ‘force majeure’ situation was one of the major demands of industry representatives. The Expenditure Department has now issued an office memorandum to the Secretaries of all Central government Ministries and departments in this regard.
This would avoid imposition of penalties and other negative consequences on the companies executing government contracts who may be dependent on supplies from affected areas. The move provides some relief to companies with central government contracts forced to default on contract obligations due to delays in input shipments from China.