Current based PRELIMS QUESTION 12 August 2020

1. Consider the following statements regarding the Reverse Transcription Process.
1. This process is catalysed by the RNA-directed DNA polymerase enzyme which is known as Reverse transcriptases.
2. The synthesis of DNA from an RNA template is called as reverse transcription.
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-
Reverse Transcription Process
The original central dogma of molecular biology held that DNA was transcribed to RNA, which in turn was translated into protein. However, this concept was challenged in the 1970s when two scientific teams, one led by Howard Temin at the University of Wisconsin and the other led by David Baltimore at MIT, independently identified new enzymes associated with replication of RNA viruses called retroviruses.
Temin and Baltimore received the Nobel Prize in Physiology or Medicine (shared with Renato Dulbecco for related work on tumor-inducing viruses) for their pioneering work in identifying reverse transcriptases.

The synthesis of DNA from an RNA template, via reverse transcription, produces complementary DNA (cDNA).
Reverse transcriptases (RTs) use an RNA template and a short primer complementary to the 3′ end of the RNA to direct the synthesis of the first strand cDNA, which can be used directly as a template for the Polymerase Chain Reaction (PCR).
This combination of reverse transcription and PCR (RT-PCR) allows the detection of low abundance RNAs in a sample, and production of the corresponding cDNA, thereby facilitating the cloning of low copy genes.
Reverse transcription begins when the viral particle enters the cytoplasm of a target cell.
The viral RNA genome enters the cytoplasm as part of a nucleoprotein complex that has not been well characterized.
The process of reverse transcription generates, in the cytoplasm, a linear DNA duplex via an intricate series of steps.
Reverse transcriptase is an RNA-dependent DNA polymerase that was discovered in many retroviruses such as human immunodeficiency virus (HIV) and avian myeloblastosis virus (AMV) in 1970.
https://www.thermofisher.com/in/en/home/life-science/cloning/cloning-learning-center/invitrogen-school-of-molecular-biology/rt-education/reverse-transcription-basics.html

2. Consider the following statements with reference to the Great Depression.
1. The Great Depression was the worst economic downturn in US history and it began in 1929.
2. It began with the stock market crash, after that President Franklin D. Roosevelt responded to the economic calamity with programs known as the New Deal.
3. It had a profound impact on institutions and policymaking globally, and led to the gold standard being abandoned.
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-
Great Depression
The Great Depression was the greatest and longest economic recession in modern world history.
The American public began a frenzy of investing in the speculative market in the 1920s.
The 1929 market crash wiped out a great deal of nominal wealth for individuals and businesses alike.
Other factors including inactivity followed by over action by the Fed also contributed to the Great Depression.
Both Presidents Hoover and Roosevelt tried to mitigate the impact of the depression through government policies.
Neither the government policies nor the beginning of WWII can be single-handedly credited with ending the depression.
Trade routes created during WW-II remained open and helped the market recover.
In almost every country of the world, there were massive job losses, deflation, and a drastic contraction in output.
In Europe, economic stagnation that the Depression caused is believed to be the principal reason behind the rise of fascism, and consequently the Second World War.
It had a profound impact on institutions and policymaking globally, and led to the gold standard being abandoned.
The Great Depression began with the stock market crash of 1929 and was made worse by the 1930s Dust Bowl. President Franklin D. Roosevelt responded to the economic calamity with programs known as the New Deal.
Causes of the decline
The fundamental cause of the Great Depression in the United States was a decline in spending (sometimes referred to as aggregate demand), which led to a decline in production as manufacturers and merchandisers noticed an unintended rise in inventories.
The sources of the contraction in spending in the United States varied over the course of the Depression, but they cumulated in a monumental decline in aggregate demand.
The American decline was transmitted to the rest of the world largely through the gold standard. However, a variety of other factors also influenced the downturn in various countries.
https://www.investopedia.com/terms/g/great_depression.asp

3. Consider the following statements regarding the Prime Minister’s Gram Sadak Yojana (PMGSY).
1. It was launched by the Govt. of India to provide connectivity to unconnected Habitations as part of a poverty reduction strategy.
2. The funding pattern for the PMGSY-III will be 60:40 between Centre and the States and 90:10 for NE and Himalayan States as applicable for Central sponsored schemes.
3. PMGSY was launched in December, 2000 with an objective to provide single all-weather road connectivity to eligible unconnected habitation of designated population size.
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-d
Explanation-
Prime Minister’s Gram Sadak Yojana (PMGSY)
PMGSY was launched in December, 2000 with an objective to provide single all-weather road connectivity to eligible unconnected habitation of designated population size (500+ in plain areas and 250+ in North-East, hill, tribal and desert areas as per Census, 2001) for overall socio-economic development of the areas.
The Pradhan Mantri Gram Sadak Yojana (PMGSY) was launched by the Govt. of India to provide connectivity to unconnected Habitations as part of a poverty reduction strategy.
Govt. of India is endeavoring to set high and uniform technical and management standards and facilitating policy development and planning at State level in order to ensure sustainable management of the rural roads network.
According to latest figures made available by the State Governments under a survey to identify Core Network as part of the PMGSY programme, about 1.67 lakh Unconnected Habitations are eligible for coverage under the programme.
The Phase-III of PMGSY aims at consolidation of 1,25,000 Kms Through Routes and Major Rural Links that connect habitations to Gramin Agricultural Markets (GrAMs), Higher Secondary Schools and Hospitals with an estimated cost of Rs. 80,250 crores (Central Share of Rs. 53,800 crores) for the period 2019-20 to 2024-25.
The funding pattern for the PMGSY-III will be 60:40 between Centre and the States for States other than NE & Himalayan States and 90:10 for NE and Himalayan States as applicable for Central sponsored schemes.
A total of 1,53,491 rural road works have been completed under the PMGSY Scheme connecting 97.27% of the eligible and feasible habitations and adding up a road length of 6,07,900 Kms across the country. Out of the above, a road length of 36,063 Kms has been constructed using green technologies, a major portion of which includes Waste plastic and cold mix technology.
The Union Minister of Rural Development, Agriculture and Farmers Welfare & Panchayati Raj recently launched Phase III of Pradhan Mantri Gram Sadak Yojana (PMGSY) on the side lines of the National Workshop on PMGSY organised by the Ministry of Rural Development in New Delhi.
https://vikaspedia.in/social-welfare/rural-poverty-alleviation-1/schemes/pradhan-mantri-gram-sadak-yojana

4. Consider the following statements regarding the World Food Programme (WFP).
1. It was formally established in 1963 by the FAO and the United Nations General Assembly.
2. It is the food-assistance branch of the United Nations and the world’s largest humanitarian organization addressing hunger and promoting food security.
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-
World Food Programme (WFP)
World Food Programme (WFP) is the leading humanitarian organization saving lives and changing lives, delivering food assistance in emergencies and working with communities to improve nutrition and build resilience.
As the international community has committed to end hunger, achieve food security and improved nutrition by 2030, one in nine people worldwide still do not have enough to eat. Food and food-related assistance lie at the heart of the struggle to break the cycle of hunger and poverty.
WFP’s efforts focus on emergency assistance, relief and rehabilitation, development aid and special operations. Two-thirds of its work is in conflict-affected countries where people are three times more likely to be undernourished than those living in countries without conflict.
It also works to strengthen the resilience of people and communities affected by protracted crises by applying a development lens in our humanitarian response.
WFP development projects focus on nutrition, especially for mothers and children, addressing malnutrition from the earliest stages through programmes targeting the first 1,000 days from conception to a child’s second birthday, and later through school meals.
WFP is the largest humanitarian organisation implementing school feeding programmes worldwide and has been doing so for over 50 years. Each year, WFP provides school meals more than 16 million children in 60 countries, often in the hardest-to-reach areas. Increasingly, WFP meets people’s food needs through cash-based transfers that allow the people we serve to choose and shop for their own food locally.
WFP also provides services to the entire humanitarian community, including passenger air transportation through the UN Humanitarian Air Service, which flies to more than 280 locations worldwide.
Funded entirely by voluntary donations, in 2018 WFP raised a record US$7.2 billion.
WFP is governed by a 36-member Executive Board. It works closely with its two Rome-based sister organizations, the Food and Agriculture Organization of the United Nations and the International Fund for Agricultural Development. WFP partners with more than 1,000 national and international NGOs to provide food assistance and tackle the underlying causes of hunger.
https://www.wfp.org/overview

5. Consider the following statements regarding the Energy Efficiency Services Limited (EESL).
1. It is a Joint Venture of four public-sector undertakings NTPC Limited, Power Finance Corporation Limited, REC Limited, and POWERGRID Corporation.
2. The entire investment by EESL is recovered through monetised energy savings over a scheduled project period.
3. It is implementing the world’s largest non-subsidised energy efficiency portfolio across sectors like lighting, buildings, e-mobility, smart metering and agriculture.
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-
Energy Efficiency Services Limited (EESL)
Energy Efficiency Services Limited (EESL) is a Super-Energy Service Company (ESCO), which enables consumers, industries and governments to effectively manage their energy needs through energy efficient technologies.
EESL is implementing the world’s largest non-subsidised energy efficiency portfolio across sectors like lighting, buildings, e-mobility, smart metering and agriculture at a scale which no organization has been able to achieve.
EESL focuses on solution-driven innovation with no subsidy or capital expenditure (CAPEX).
It is able to do so using its Pay-As-You-Save (PAYS) model, which obviates the need for any upfront capital investment by the consumer.
The entire investment by EESL is recovered through monetised energy savings over a scheduled project period.
EESL is promoted by the Ministry of Power Government of India as a Joint Venture of four reputed public-sector undertakings – NTPC Limited, Power Finance Corporation Limited., REC Limited, and POWERGRID Corporation of India Limited and has a net worth of over INR 8.3 billion.
https://eeslindia.org/content/raj/eesl/en/About-Us/about-eesl/About-EESL.html