Current based PRELIMS QUESTION 6 April 2020

1. Consider the following statement regarding the investment in research and development (R&D).
1. It is well below that in major nations such as the U.S. (2.8), China (2.1), Israel (4.3) and Korea (4.2).
2. According to a 2019 report by the Economic Advisory Council (EAC), as a part of GDP, public expenditures on R&D in India has been stagnant between 0.6-0.7 percent of GDP over the past two decades.
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

 

 

  1. Answer-c
    Explanation
    In an effort to stimulate investment in research and development (R&D), the Department of Science and Technology is mooting a fund that will match the contributions made by private companies in R&D. Currently, a ₹40 crore targets was on the anvil. The idea is to pool funds from a group of companies willing to invest in fundamental research and whatever is invested government will match that.
    The scheme will be coordinated through the department’s Science and Engineering Research Board, which funds a variety of basic science projects in several universities. According to a 2019 report by the Economic Advisory Council (EAC) to the Prime Minister, as a fraction of GDP, public expenditures on R&D in India has been stagnant — between 0.6-0.7% of GDP — over the past two decades. It is well below that in major nations such as the U.S. (2.8), China (2.1), Israel (4.3) and Korea (4.2).
    Public sector institutions form the lion’s share of India’s investment in R&D. In 2004-2005, private sector accounted for 28% of India’s research spend and in 2016-17 this increased to 40%. In most advanced economies, private R&D accounts for the bulk of investment in R&D. Hence both statements are correct.

 

2. Consider the following statements regarding the radiation therapy.
1. Radiotherapy is treatment with ionizing radiation, most commonly with high energy X-rays directed at the site of the tumour.
2. It works by damaging the DNA of the cancer cells. The normal cells have the capacity to repair the damage. But for tumour cells, the damage accumulates and kills them.
3. When a tissue is exposed to a high dose of radiation that does not kill them, the DNA mutations caused by it can become cancerous.
Which of the statement(s) given above is/are correct?
(a) 1 and 2 only
(b) 2 only
(c) 2 and 3 only
(d) 1, 2 and 3

 

2. Answer-a
Explanation
Radiation Therapy
Radiotherapy is treatment with ionizing radiation, most commonly with high energy X-rays directed at the site of the tumour.
It works by damaging the DNA of the cancer cells. The normal cells have the capacity to repair the damage. But for tumour cells, the damage accumulates and kills them.


The role of radiotherapy is generally classified into curative and palliative.
Curative/radical is when radiotherapy can cure the disease by itself. This is usually given for areas such as head and neck cancer, anal canal cancer where organ preservation is a priority. It can also play a curative role in cervical, vaginal, vulval, prostate and skin cancers.
Radiation therapy is used as an adjuvant/neoadjuvant treatment when it is given before or after a main treatment like surgery or chemotherapy.
Palliative treatment is offered only to relieve some symptoms like pain, bleeding, obstruction, to improve the quality of life, such as in painful bony metastases and symptomatic brain metastases.
The risks depend on the region of treatment and the dose received by the adjacent normal tissues.
Radiation is a known carcinogenic factor. When a tissue is exposed to a low dose of radiation that does not kill them, the DNA mutations caused by it can become cancerous, though the incidence is very low.

3. Consider the following statements regarding the Nai ki Kot or the Barber’s fort.
1. Nai ki Kot, literally meaning the Barber’s fort, was built by Muhammad bin Tughluq.
2. It is part of Daulatabad Fort which is situated in Maharashtra.
3. It was the private apartment of ruler, where he retired when he had enough of the affairs of state.
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-c
Explanation
Nai ki Kot
NaikaKot or barber’s fortress, on the outskirts of Delhi, is in ruins now and few find the time to visit it, for they are not conversant with the history of the place.
Nai ki Kot, literally meaning the Barber’s fort, was built by Muhammad bin Tughluq, but nothing is known about this 14th century influential barber. But dedicating forts to their favourite barbers is nothing uncommon among the royals of Delhi.
In the Humayun’s Tomb complex stands the Barber’s Tomb, probably housing the mortal remains of emperor’s favourite barber.
The Nai ka Kot has an arched gate on the south and another gate on the north and no structures have survived within the walled enclosure.
NaikaKot was the private apartment of Mohammad bin Tughlak, where he retired when he had had enough of the affairs of state.

4. Consider the following statements in reference to the Sabarmati Ashram.
1. It situated on the banks of river Sabarmati was home to Mahatma Gandhi from 1917 to 1930.
2. The first struggle Gandhiji headed from the Sabarmati Ashram was for the textile workers strike.
3. Gandhiji said he would never return to Sabarmati until India achieved Independence. He did see India gain Independence but was unable to return to Sabarmati.
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-
The Sabarmati Ashram
The Sabarmati Ashram situated on the banks of river Sabarmati was home to Mahatma Gandhi from 1917 to 1930 and served as one of the main centres of the Indian freedom struggle.
The reason the Sabarmati Ashram is so very important is because of the person who lived in it and the role the ashram played in the nation’s life during his residency.
It was not only a shelter and a political space during the freedom struggle but it was also a place where the Mahatma dreamt of a pure India liberated from the evils of untouchability, inequality and societal divides.
The first struggle Gandhiji headed from the Sabarmati Ashram was for the textile workers strike.
It was also from here on the 12 March 1930 that Gandhiji launched the famous Dandi march 241 miles from the Ashram in protest of the British Salt Law.
Most of the constructive activities of Mahatma Gandhi, supplementary to the freedom struggle, like basic education, khadi activities, swadeshi andolan, cleanliness campaign and prohibition were started here.
The Ashram was a human laboratory where Gandhiji could test his moral and spiritual hypotheses.
Today’s Relevance
Today the Ashram lives on but the social evils, economic disparities and vested political interests have succeeded in pushing the ideals of the Mahatma on the backseat. Today caste hierarchy, all kinds of violence instilling insecurity in the minds of people and increasing religious divide are disrupting the very social fabric of India.
In times of turbulence or unrest the civil society raises its voice against the atrocities by holding protests and sitting on dharnas outside the Sabarmati Ashram. But the Ashram reminds us to be hopeful and optimistic. It tells us to not thwart the vision of the Mahatma even in the face of immense adversity.
The Ashram still preserves the dream that India will eventually live up to and is waiting to see the country free of all kinds of oppressions on its own people.
The Ashram still personifies the ideals of truth and humility of a man who once lived there and lived for a nation and died for a nation.
Gandhiji said he would never return to Sabarmati until India achieved Independence. He did see India gain Independence on August 15, 1947; but was unable to return to Sabarmati, as• he was assassinated by Vinayak N. Godse.
The Ashram tells us about one man’s dedication, determination and ideals but also reminds us of the road we still need to traverse in order to realise Gandhiji’s dream of an India free from injustice.

5. Consider the following statements regarding the Conservation of Migratory Species of Wild Animals (CMS).
1. CMS is a treaty agreed by 129 countries plus the European Union, and functions under the UN Environment Programme (UNEP).
2. India would chair the COP Convention on migratory birds for the next three years.
Which of the following statements is/are correct?
(a) 1 only
(b) 2 only
(c) Both 1 and 2
(d) Neither 1 nor 2
Answer-c
Explanation-
CMS is a treaty agreed by 129 countries plus the European Union, and functions under the UN Environment Programme (UNEP).
It works for protection and conservation of species that migrate across frontiers and are facing threats of extinction or require urgent attention.
CMS aims to bring together different countries that are part of range of a given species, and facilitate coherent conservation and protection regimes in a group of countries. Appendix-I lists species threatened with extinction, while Appendix-II lists those in need of global cooperation for favourable conservation status. If listed on Appendix-I, it would facilitate trans-boundary conservation efforts of these species.
CMS-CoP-13
The Conference of Parties of the Convention on the conservation of migratory species of wild animals recently concluded in Gandhinagar, Gujarat.
India would chair the COP Convention on migratory birds for the next three years.