Current based PRELIMS QUESTION 27 MARCH 2020

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1. Consider the following statements regarding Technology Group.
1. It intends to ensure that India has appropriate policies and strategies for effective exploitation of the latest technologies for overall sustainable economic development.
2. It is a 12-Member body with the Principal Scientific Adviser to Government of India as its Chair.
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

2. Consider the following statements regarding the National Bank for Agriculture and Rural Development (NABARD).
1. It is a statutory body established in 1982 under the NABARD Act, 1981.
2. It provides recommendations to RBI on issue of licenses to Cooperative Banks, opening of new branches by State Cooperative Banks and Regional Rural Banks (RRBs).
3. The functions of the 3 institutes of RBI i.e. the Agricultural Credit Department (ACD), Rural Planning and Credit Cell (RPCC), and Agricultural Refinance and Development Corporation (ARDC) were transferred to it.
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. Consider the following statements about the Belt and Road Initiative (BRI).
1. It is a giant connectivity initiative by China to revive the ancient Silk Road across Eurasia and Africa.
2. India for the first time participated in the second edition of Belt and Road Forum (BRF).
3. It passes though nodes such as Mandalay in Myanmar and Dhaka in Bangladesh before heading to Kolkata.
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. Consider the following statements regarding India-US trade.
1. Trade deficit of USA with India dipped from $21.3 billion in 2017-18 to $16.9 billion in 2018-19.
2. Both India and USA are the members of RCEP agreement.
3. India enjoys a trade surplus with the USA.
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

5. Consider the following statements regarding the Child Marriage Restraint Act, 1929.
1. This act originally fixed the marriageable age for girls at 18 years and 21 years for boys respectively.
2. It is popularly known as the Sarda Act after its sponsor, Harbilas Sarda.
3. It become into force on the 1st day of April, 1930.
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-c
Explanation-
Technology Group
Cabinet has approved constitution of a 12-Member Technology Group with the Principal Scientific Adviser to Government of India as its Chair. This Group is mandated to render timely policy advice on
1. Latest technologies.
2. Mapping of technology and technology products.
3. The commercialization of dual use technologies developed in national laboratories and government R&D organisations.
4. Developing an indigenization road map for selected key technologies.
5. Selection of appropriate R&D programs leading to technology development.
The Technology Group intends to ensure that India has appropriate policies and strategies for effective exploitation of the latest technologies for economic growth and sustainable development of Indian Industry, in all sectors.

 

2.Answer-d
Explanation
National Bank for Agriculture and Rural Development (NABARD)
Genesis & vision
The importance of institutional credit in boosting rural economy has been clear to the Government of India right from its early stages of planning. Therefore, the Reserve Bank of India (RBI) at the insistence of the Government of India, constituted a Committee to Review the Arrangements for Institutional Credit for Agriculture and Rural Development (CRAFICARD) to look into these very critical aspects. The Committee was formed on 30 March 1979, under the Chairmanship of Shri B. Sivaraman, former member of Planning Commission, Government of India.
The Committee’s interim report, submitted on 28 November 1979, outlined the need for a new organizational device for providing undivided attention, forceful direction and pointed focus to credit related issues linked with rural development. Its recommendation was formation of a unique development financial institution which would address these aspirations and formation of National Bank for Agriculture and Rural Development (NABARD) was approved by the Parliament through Act 61 of 1981.
NABARD came into existence on 12 July 1982 by transferring the agricultural credit functions of RBI and refinance functions of the then Agricultural Refinance and Development Corporation (ARDC).
It was dedicated to the service of the nation by the late Prime Minister Smt. Indira Gandhi on 05 November 1982. Set up with an initial capital of Rs.100 crore, its’ paid up capital stood at Rs.12, 580 crore as on 31 March 2019. Consequent to the revision in the composition of share capital between Government of India and RBI, NABARD today is fully owned by Government of India.
Vision
Development Bank of the Nation for Fostering Rural Prosperity
Mission
Promote sustainable and equitable agriculture and rural development through participative financial and non-financial interventions, innovations, technology and institutional development for securing prosperity.
Initiatives
The initiatives are aimed at building an empowered and financially inclusive rural India through specific goal oriented departments which can be categorized broadly into three heads: Financial, Developmental and Supervision. Through these initiatives we touch almost every aspect of rural economy. From providing refinance support to building rural infrastructure; from preparing district level credit plans to guiding and motivating the banking industry in achieving these targets; from supervising Cooperative Banks and Regional Rural Banks (RRBs) to helping them develop sound banking practices and on boarding them to the CBS platform; from designing new development schemes to the implementation of GoI’s development schemes; from training handicraft artisans to providing them a marketing platform for selling these articles.
Over the years initiatives have touched millions of rural lives across the country. The SHG Bank Linkage Project launched by NABARD in 1992 has blossomed into the world’s largest micro finance project. Kisan Credit Card, designed by this has become source of comfort for crores of farmers. It has financed one fifth of India’s total rural infrastructure. It was pioneers in the field of watershed development as a tool for sustainable climate proofing.
Schemes
Farm sector
1. Dairy Entrepreneurship Development Scheme
2. Capital Investment Subsidy Scheme for Commercial Production Units for organic/ biological Inputs
3. Agri-clinic and Agribusiness Centres Scheme
4. National Livestock Mission
5. GSS – Ensuring End Use of Subsidy Released
6. Interest Subvention Scheme
7. New Agricultural Marketing Infrastructure
Off farm sector
1. Credit Linked Capital Subsidy Scheme
2. NRLM / NULM (Deendayal Antyodaya Yojana)
3. Weavers Package

 

3.Answer-c
Explanation-
BRI:
BRI consisting of the land-based belt, ‘Silk Road Economic Belt’, and ‘Maritime Silk Road’, aims to connect the East Asian economic region with the European economic circle and runs across the continents of Asia, Europe and Africa.
BRI is China’s ambitious project announced in 2013. It covers about 65% of the world population, 60% of the world GDP and over 70 countries in six economic corridors.
China is spending almost $1 trillion to revive and renew the overland and maritime trade links between China, Europe, West Asia, and East Africa through construction of modern ports linked to high-speed road and rail corridors.
India’s concerns with BRI:
India argues that the BRI and China-Pakistan Economic Corridor project violates its sovereignty because it passes through the part of the Pakistan-occupied Kashmir that belongs to India.
Debt trap: BRI projects are pushing recipient countries into indebtedness, do not transfer skills or technology and are environmentally unsustainable.
China is planning to extend the CPEC to Afghanistan. Meanwhile, Maldives, Nepal, Myanmar and Sri Lanka are eagerly pursuing potential BRI projects.
Through OBOR, China is countering the strategies of India in North East region and is promoting its greater presence in North East India, part of which China claims as its own territory. This may have a security impact on India.
Tense bilateral relations with China, deep mistrusts and India’s growing concerns over Chinese hegemonic intentions in South Asia and Indo-Pacific region make it practically unlikely that India will ever consider joining this project.
Military deployment: The fact that the Chinese have begun to deploy 30,000 security personnel to protect the projects along the CPEC route makes it an active player in the politics of the Indian sub-continent. Clearly, this is a case of double standards.

 

4.Answer-c
Explanation-
India is in no rush to sign a trade deal with the US and is focussed on a mutually beneficial pact, government sources after US President Donald Trump indicated that a trade deal might not materialise during his visit herr.
India enjoys a trade surplus with the United States.
In 2018-19, India’s exports to the US were $52.4 billion, while imports were $ 35.5 billion.
Trade deficit dipped from $21.3 billion in 2017-18 to $16.9 billion in 2018-19.
India pulled out of RCEP recently, to protect service workers and farmers and US is not a part of RCEP.

 

5.Answer-a
Explanation
Child Marriage Restraint Act, 1929
The Child Marriage Restraint Act was a legislative act passed on 28 September 1929. The act fixed the marriageable age for girls at 14 years and 18 years for boys. It would be later amended to 18 years and 21 years for girls and boys respectively.
It is popularly known as the Sarda Act after its sponsor, Harbilas Sarda.
Overview of the Child Marriage Restraint Act
How was the Child Marriage Restraint Act Formed?
Various bills addressing questions on the age of consent were introduced in the Indian legislatures and defeated. The All India Women’s Conference, Women’s Indian Association and National Council of Women in India, through their members developed and articulated the argument in favour of raising of the age for marriage and consent before the Joshi Committee.
Muslim women presented their views to the Joshi Committee in favour of raising the age limit of marriage even when they knew that they would face opposition from Muslim Ulemas.
The Joshi Committee presented its report on 20 June 1929 and was passed by the Imperial Legislative Council on 28 September 1929 and became a law on 1 April 1930, after approval from Lord Irwin extending to the whole of British India. It fixed 14 and 18 as the marriageable age for girls and boys respectively of all communities.
What is the significance of the Child Marriage Restraint Act?
The Child Marriage Restraint Act was the first social reform issue taken up by an organized women’s group in India. This group pressured many politicians into supporting the act by picketing their delegations, holding placards and shouting slogans. They believed that with the passing of this act, it would show the world that India is serious about social reforms.
By showing support for this act, women in India were challenging the double standards of the ancient Shastras. Declaring they would begin to make their own laws, free of male influence, the women’s organization brought liberal feminism to a forefront.
However, the Act remained a dead letter during the colonial period of British rule in India.
As per Jawaharlal Nehru, this was largely due to the fact that the colonial British government did nothing to propagate awareness of it, especially in smaller towns and villages of India.
In his autobiography, Nehru elucidates that this was largely due to the fact that the British did not want to earn the displeasure of the communal elements among the Hindus and Muslims.
In the 1930s, the only parties in India that continued to support the British rule were these communal groups. The British government did not wish to lose their support, hence they completely avoided implementing this and similar social reforms, instead of focusing their attention on preventing the Indian freedom movement. Thus their infamous “Dual Policy” which prevented any significant social reform in India.