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International Current Affairs Quiz - October 2018

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1. 2018 Global Hunger Index (GHI), prepared by global NGOs Concern Worldwide (Ireland) and Welthungerhilfe (Germany).

  1. Level of hunger and undernutrition worldwide fell to 20.9, down from 29.2 in 2000. 
  2. India was ranked ___________________ out of 119 qualifying countries. 
  3. 15 countries with 2018 GHI scores of less than 5 are not assigned individual ranks, but rather are collectively ranked 1–15. These are - Belarus, Cuba, Estonia, Kuwait, Latvia, Croatia, Montenegro, Romania,Turkey, Ukraine, Uruguay, Costa Rica, Chile, Lithuania, Bosnia & Herzegovina.
  4. Bottom 5 - Central African Republic (119), Chad (118), Yemen (117), Madagascar (116), Zambia (115)
  5. Neighbours - Bangladesh (86), China (25), Nepal (72), Pakistan (106), Sri Lanka (67)
103rd
113rd
123nd
129th
None of These


2. A web-based tool to monitor spread of fake news on social media platforms has been developed by Researchers from University of Michigan (__________________________). It uses a Platform Health Metric called the Iffy Quotient and will supposedly draw data from two external entities namely NewsWhip and Media Bias/Fact Check.

UK
Russsia
USA
Spain
None of These


3. According to Global Soil Biodiversity Atlas prepared by _____________________ (WWF), India faces grave danger to soil biodiversity -

  1. Atlas was released as part of WWF’s biennial Living Planet Report (LPR) 2018. The key aspect of this year’s report was threat to soil biodiversity and pollinators, the two key drivers of biodiversity.
  2. Soil Biodiversity -
    1. Soil biodiversity is total community from genes to species, and varies depending on environment. The immense diversity in soil allows for great variety of ecosystem services that benefit species that inhabit it.
    2. India was coloured red on atlas and is among countries whose soil biodiversity faces the highest level of risk
  3. Pollinators -
    1. 150 million bee colonies were needed to meet pollination requirements of about 50 million hectares of agricultural land in India, only 1.2 million colonies were present. Pollination is process by which plant pollen is transferred from male reproductive organs to female reproductive organs to form seeds.
Work Wide Fuel for Nature
Work Wide Fund for Nature
World Web Fund for Nature
World Wide Fund for Nature
None of These


4. According to Standard Chartered study-‘The Emerging Affluent Study 2018– Climbing the Prosperity Ladder’, _____________ is Asia’s most investment savvy economy.

China
Japan
Vietnam
Sri Lanka
India


5. As per International Air Transport Association (IATA), India will become world’s _______________________ largest aviation market by 2024. India is presently at 7th place.

2nd
1st
3rd
4th
None of These


6. As per Mercom Communications India - second largest solar market with installed capacity of _________________________ GW of solar power. China is at top of list.

4.9
2.9
3.9
6.9
None of These


7. As per World Wildlife Fund (WWF) Living Planet Report 2018, Humanity has wiped out ___________________ of mammals, birds, fish, reptiles, and amphibians between 1970 and 2014. Vast consumption of food and resources by global population is destroying the web of life.

40 %
60 %
80 %
90 %
None of These


8. As per a Report named Humanity at Risk – Global Terror Threat Indicant (GTTI) by Oxford University and Strategic Foresight Group (SFG) -

  1. __________________ registered highest number of terrorist bases and safe havens, possesses three times more threat to humanity than Syria.
  2. Among Terror Groups , Lashkar-e-Taiba (LeT) and Afghan Taliban pose maximum threat to the international security.
Pakistan
Iraq
Iran
Bangladesh
None of These


9. Asian Economic Integration Report 2018 presented by Asian Development Bank, with focus on progress in cooperation and migration.

  1. ________________ hosts highest number of outward international migrants in 2017, followed by China and Bangladesh. About one third of international migrants were from Asia in 2017.
  2. FDI in Asian region remain stable with 517.5 billion in 2017.
  3. This year in the report there was a special chapter “Toward Optimal Provision of Regional Public Goods in Asia and the Pacific”. It stressed on that optimal provision of Regional public goods can be a solution for development challenges in era of economic interdependence.
India
Japan
Indonesia
Thailand
None of These


10. _____________________________ President Abdul Hamid approved controversial Digital Security Bill 2018, combining colonial-era Official Secrets Act with tough new provisions such as arrests without warrant. It aims to deal harshly with cybercrimes, including hurting religious sentiment, spreading negative propaganda against 1971 Liberation War and Bangabandhu (Sheikh Mujibur Rahman).

  1. It also covers illegal activities in e-transactions and spreading defamatory data under its ambitIt provides for 7 - 14 years imprisonment and monetary fines of 25 lakh - 1 crore Taka
  2. Law faced widespread vocal opposition from rights groups and journalists that it could endanger freedom of speech– especially on social media. The law has also drawn opposition internationally including from USA.
Bhutan
Nepal
India
Bangladesh
None of These


11. Based on Data by American Community Survey, ______________ is the fastest growing language in USA, with number of US residents speaking it rose by 86 % between 2010 and 2017. However, it is outside top 20 of most widely-spoken languages other than English in USA.

Kannada
Malayalam
Tamil
Telugu
None of These


12. Canada agreed to sign a trade deal with USA and ___________________, revamping North American Free Trade Agreement. New deal has been named as United States-Mexico-Canada Agreement (USMCA).

  1. USMCA modernises what was covered by NAFTA by adding provisions on digital trade and intellectual property.
  2. It would allow US farmers greater access to Canada's dairy market and address concerns about potential US auto tariffs. The pact will come up for review every six years.
  3. Canada will export 2.6 million vehicles to USA, after 25 % global autos tariffs imposed by US on national security grounds. Deal, however, failed to resolve U.S. tariffs on Canada's steel and aluminum exports.
  4. Background -
    1. USA President Trump threatened to end 25-year-old North American Free Trade Agreement into a bilateral pact with Mexico and tax Canadian vehicle exports to USA if Canada failed to sign deal before September 30 midnight deadline. Canada, USA's 2nd largest trading partner, was left out when the US and Mexico had reached a preliminary deal in late August to revamp NAFTA.
Cuba
Mexico
Guatelama
Guyana
None of These


13. ______________ legalised possession and use of recreational cannabis (also called Marijuana), becoming 2nd country to do so After Uruguay.

Paraguay
Argentina
Brazil
Venezuela
Canada


14. __________________________ Updates -

  1. _________ and Southeast Asian Nations (ASEAN) started off their first joint maritime exercises in Zhanjiang, to ease regional tensions linked to rival claims in South China Sea.
  2. Launched its Centispace-1-s1 satellite, on a Kuaizhou-1A low-cost solid-fuel carrier rocket.
  3. Launched two remote sensing satellites belonging to the Yaogan-32 family by a Long March-2C rocket.
  4. Tested world’s largest unmanned transport drone which can carry a payload of 1.5 tonnes, called Feihong-98 (FH-98). It has Max takeoff weight of 5.25 tonnes, capacity of 1.5 tonnes and 15 cubic metres, a flight height of 4,500 metres, speed of 180 KMPH, and a maximum range of 1200 kms.
    1. Is planning to put a ‘moon’ of its own in the night sky by 2020, to replace conventional street lamps and save electricity.
    2. Chengdu city in southwestern Sichuan province is developing illumination satellites, which will shine along with the real moon but will be eight times brighter.
    3. These satellites will have a reflective coating which can reflect sunlight towards Earth similar to the moon. Placed only 500km above Earth, light reflected from the man-made moon will be more luminous than actual moon.
  5. Will sell 48 Wing Loong II high-end armed drones to Pakistan, as largest export deal for drones to date to any country.
    1. Wing Loong II is a high-end reconnaissance, strike and multi-role endurance unmanned aerial system, capable of being fitted with air-to-surface weapons. It can payload up to 480kg (1,060lbs), including 12 laser guided missiles or YJ-9E anti-ship missiles. It can fly at maximum altitude of 9,000 metres (29,500 feet).
  6. _____________'s first private research university officially inaugurated in Zhejiang Province's Hangzhou city. Autonomy for top educational institutions has been a long-standing demand of Chinese academic community, as china's higher education bodies are mostly govt owned.
  7. ________ Govt announced to scrap setting population target in future, and give people more freedom with respect to childbirth. China wants to ease restrictions on family planning to combat ageing population.
  8. _____________’s first home-grown amphibious aircraft AG600 (code-named Kunlong) successfully carried out its first take-off and landing on water, claimed as world’s largest amphibious aircraft. It can carry 50 people and can stay airborne for 12 hours, with operational range of 4,500-km.
  9. ______________ President Xi Jinping officially opened world’s longest sea-crossing bridge.
    1. The $20-billion bridge, which spans 55 kilometres, connects Hong Kong and Macau to the mainland city of Zhuhai.
    2. Bridge is designed to withstand earthquakes and typhoons, built using 400,000 tonnes of steel, enough to build 60 Eiffel Towers.
    3. It includes dual three-lane, oversea stretch (22.9 km) and undersea tunnel (6.7 km) which reaches depth of 44 m. The rest 25.4 km of the bridge runs over land. The two ends of tunnel of bridge are connected to two artificial islands. Bridge contains 400,000 tonnes of steel.
    4. Its total cost was 120 billion yuan ($17.3 billion).
China
Bangladesh
Myanmar
Japan
None of These


15. ____________ government signed a twin-city agreement with the Moscow (Russia) for cooperation in fields like environment, culture and education, for the next 3 years.

Puducherry
Daman and Diu
Andaman and Nicobar Islands
Delhi
None of These


16. Druzhba 2018 (Friendship 2018) joint bilateral military exercise between ___________________ and Russia held in Pakistan, as 3rd addition of this joint military drill.

India
Japan
Pakistan
Bangladesh
None of These


17. First __________________-Chinese satellite launched into orbit to study ocean surface winds and waves, aboard a Long March 2C carrier rocket.

German
Franco
Russian
Indian
None of These


18. Former PM HD Deve Gowda (11th PM from June 1, 1996 to April 21, 1997) conferred with Maharshi Valmiki Jayanti Award on occasion of Valmiki Jayanti (Oct 24), for his contribution to welfare of Scheduled Caste and Scheduled Tribes communities. Award will be given by ______________ CM HD Kumaraswamy.

Kerala
Karnataka
Telangana
Andhra Pradesh
None of These


19. From January 2019, Indian tourists travelling to ________________ via road will need either a voter ID or a valid passport to enter the country, while accompanying children can also travel with a birth certificate. Visitors will now get entry permits instead of identification slips.

Nepal
Sri Lanka
Bangladesh
Bhutan
None of These


20. ____________ Chancellor Angela Merkel announced that she will step down as Chancellor in 2021. She would not seek re-election as leader of the centre-right Christian Democratic Union( CDU).

German
Russian
French
Polish
None of These


21. _________________________ and UK with support from World Bank, launched a new Global Risk Financing Facility (GRiF), To support vulnerable countries to climate and disaster shocks.

  1. This fund will consist of an initial corpus of $150 million. It will be built on the work of several existing programs including InsuResilience Climate Risk Financing and Insurance Program MDTF established by BMZ, DFID and World Bank, Centre for Global Disaster Protection established by DFID and World Bank, andInsuResilience Solutions Fund jointly established by BMZ and KFW.
  2. Funding includes Insurance premium financing, Risk financing investments, Risk financing mechanisms that promote parallel improvements in countries for crisis response and recovery AND Technical assistance and capacity building where this is not yet covered by other programs.
Germany
Poland
France
Spain
None of These


22. Global Competitiveness Report 2018 by World Economic Forum (WEF) -

  1. India - Ranked __________________, Bettering 2017 Rank by 5 Places.
  2. Top 5 - USA (1), Singapore (2), Germany (3), Switzerland (4), Japan (5)
  3. Bottom 5 - Chad (140), Yemen (139), Haiti (138), Angola (137), Burundi (136)
  4. Neighbours - Bangladesh (103), Sri Lanka (85), Pakistan (107), Nepal (109)
28th
58th
48th
68th
None of These


23. Green Climate Fund (GCF) approved more than $1 billion new investments for 19 new projects to help developing countries tackle climate change, during a meeting of GCF in Manama (___________________).

  1. Funding was approved for projects linked to geothermal energy in Indonesia, greener cities in Europe and Middle East and protection for coastal communities in India.
  2. About GCF -
    1. GCF is UN-backed fund considered as key vehicle for climate-related development programs, guided by principles of UN Framework Convention on Climate Change (UNFCCC). It aims to help developing countries to finance clean energy projects other mitigation efforts, practices and adaptation to counter climate change.
    2. It was formally established by UNFCCC decision in Durban, South Africa in December 2011.
Poland
Belgium
Egypt
Bahrain
None of These


24. Henley Passport Index 2018.

  1. Indian passport secured 81st rank with visa-free or visa-on-arrival access to 60 destinations.
  2. Top 5 - ________________ (1), Singapore (2), Germany (3), France (4), South Korea (5)
USA
China
UK
Russia
Japan


25. India Based construction major ___________________ is only Indian firm to be featured among top 25 companies in Forbes' global 2000 best employers list (ranked 22).

  1. Among top 100, there are 4 Indian firms - Mahindra & Mahindra (55), Grasim Industries (59) and HDFC (91). Also, Total 24 domestic companies in overall list.
  2. Top 3 - Alphabet (1), Microsoft (2), Apple.
TCS
SBI
Larsen & Toubro
Reliance
None of These


26. India and _____________ several agreements for enhancing inland and coastal waterways connectivity, Including an agreement to use Chattogram and Mongla Ports for movement of goods to and from India. An addendum to ‘Protocol on Inland Water Transit and Trade between two countries' has also been signed for the inclusion of Dhubri in India and Pangaon in Bangladesh as new Ports.

Bangladesh
Myanmar
Nepal
Bhutan
None of These


27. India and _____________________________ launched their first joint programme for Afghanistan to train its diplomats, hosting 10 Afghan Diplomats who will travel to India for 1st India-China joint training programme for Afghan diplomats, under Trilateral Cooperation.

Japan
China
Russia
Spain
None of These


28. India and _____________________________ signed MoU for appointment of private port operator for Operation and Maintenance (O&M) of Sittwe Port, Paletwa Inland Water Terminal and associated facilities included in Kaladan Multi Model Transit Transport Project.

  1. Sittwe port will connect India’s landlocked north-east region to Bay of Bengal through Mizoram. It will also provide alternate route to Kolkata.
  2. It is also significant in implementation of India’s Act East Policy as it will boost connectivity and will contribute to job creation in whole region, particularly in Myanmar’s strife-torn Rakhine and Chin States.
  3. It will significantly lower cost and distance of movement from Kolkata to Mizoram and beyond. It will also reduce dependency on only route narrow strip dubbed as Chicken’s Neck in West Bengal, sandwiched between Bhutan and Bangladesh.
Nepal
Bhutan
Myanmar
Sri Lanka
None of These


29. India and _______________________ signed 2 MoU for construction of 1200 houses through 50 model villages, using Indian grant assistance of 60 crore rupees. Also, Rabindranath Tagore Memorial Auditorium built with Indian grant assistance of 30 crore rupees was dedicated to the people.

Bangladesh
Myanmar
Bhutan
Nepal
Sri Lanka


30. India and _______________ will collaborate for research on different aspects of Ganga delta region and Bay of Bengal, announced duuring a programme launched by UK Research and Innovation.

USA
Russia
UK
Spain
None of These


31. India donated ______________________ for a peacekeeping initiative at UN, under ‘Pipeline to Peacekeeping Command Programme’.

50 lakh Dollars
30 lakh Dollars
1 lakh Dollars
3 lakh Dollars
None of These


32. India elected to United Nations’ Human Rights Council for a period of _____________________ years, by securing 188 votes in Asia-Pacific category (highest vote among all candidates).

1
3
5
8
None of These


33. India launched humanitarian operation Samudra Maitri to provide assistance to earthquake and tsunami victims in _________________, dispatching two aircraft C-130J and C-17 and three naval ships carrying relief material and personnel.

Indonesia
Malaysia
Thailand
Nepal
None of These


34. India lost one spot to rank as 9th most valuable nation brand in world, according to UK-based consultancy Brand Finance’s Nation Brands 2018 report. However, India’s brand value increased by 5% to $2,159 billion. _________________ topped the list with a brand value of $25,899 billion.

China
Japan
Germany
France
US


35. India ranked ________________ among 73 countries in 2018 Government e-Payments Adoption Ranking (GEAR) by Economist Intelligence Unit (EIU) -

  1. India jumped 8 positions in this ranking from 36th in 2011.
  2. Norway has topped 2018 GEAR list scoring 89.7 points in seven categories.
21st
28th
48th
88th
None of These


36. India ranked 5th among 206 countries in 2018 Cigarette Package Health Warnings: International Status Report by Canadian Cancer Society. In India, 85% of both sides of cigarette packets are covered with warnings.

  1. Top 5 - _________________ (92.5%), Nepal (90%), Vanuatu (90%), New Zealand (87.5%) and India held 5th rank jointly with Hong Kong and Thailand for 85% warnings.
Timor-Leste
Spain
France
Guyana
None of These


37. Indian IT industry apex body Nasscom partnershiped with Hiroshima government (______________) for co-creating an IT Corridor in Hiroshima. Through this partnership, India would be getting a gate way to the cutting-edge manufacturing technology of Japan. Indian companies on software side can help Japanese manufacturing companies adopt digital transformation and create innovative product and solutions lines.

France
Spain
Russia
China
Japan


38. India’s non-life insurance penetration risen marginally to 0.9 % of GDP ($ 27 billion), but still remains among highest underinsurance levels globally, as per a report by Lloyd’s. It was .7 % for India in 2012.

  1. India’s insurance gap accounts for 17 % of the total global insurance gap (_________________).
  2. Globally, India has seventh-largest insurance gap, with top spot held by Bangladesh (in Terms of % of GDP). In absolute terms, China has biggest insurance gap of $ 76.4 billion.
  3. Netherlands remains the country with the highest insurance penetration at 7.7 per cent, followed by South Korea (5 %).
$162.5 billion
$362.5 billion
$562.5 billion
$762.5 billion
None of These


39. Interbrand's "Best 100 Global Brands 2018" report -

  1. ____________________ displaced Google to become top brand in the world in 2018. Apple's brand value grew 16 % to $214.5 billion. It also became first company in US to hit the $1 trillion market cap.
  2. Amazon achieved 56% growth to become third top brand globally.
  3. Facebook fell to 9th place, amid data breach controversies.
Amazon
Apple
Microsoft
Linkedin
None of These


40. _____________ Updates -

  1. _________ Aerospace Exploration Agency and Mitsubishi Heavy Industries launched United Arab Emirates’ (UAE) first locally made satellite KhalifaSat into orbit. The rocket also carried an IBUKI-2 greenhouse gas observation satellite.
  2. Joined joint exercise ‘Kamandag’(venom) with US and Filipino troops in Philippines for first time since World War II. Its first time _____________'s armoured military vehicles were used on foreign soil since 1945.
  3. _______________’s Hayabusa2 probe launched French-German Mobile Asteroid Surface Scout, or MASCOT, towards asteroid Ryugu’s surface.
Spain
Vietnam
Russia
China
Japan


41. Joint military exercise Iron Magic 19 between United Arab Emirates (UAE) and ______________________ held near Dubai.

UK
USA
Russia
Spain
None of These


42. Kereru, a native green and bronze wood pigeon, known to fall from trees after consuming rotten berries, named 2018 bird of the year in _________________.

Australia
New Zealand
USA
UK
None of These


43. _________________ Government abolished death penalty, following strong domestic opposition for it.

Malaysia
Thailand
Indonesia
Myanmar
None of These


44. Members of European Parliament approved banning single-use plastics, to curb marine pollution. The ban is likely to take effect by ____________.

2031
2025
2023
2019
2021


45. NSE signed a pact with the __________________ government to provide access to capital to SMEs, to fuel growth of such SMEs in state by increasing awareness along with government on opportunities to raise capital, SME exchange guidelines, listing processes, compliance with listing etc.

Himachal Pradesh
Uttarakhand
Rajasthan
Haryana
None of These


46. PM Narendra Modi conferred with United Nation’s Champions of the Earth Award 2018 by UN Secretary General Antonio Guterres in New Delhi. He is among the six winners who received this award. Other Awardees are -

  1. _________________ President Emmanuel Macron.
  2. India’s Cochin International Airport - Awarded in Entrepreneurial Vision category. It is world’s first fully solar-powered airport.
  3. Joan Carling - Awarded lifetime achievement award as a prominent defender of environmental and indigenous rights.
  4. Beyond Meat and Impossible Foods - Jointly recognised in Science and Innovation category.
  5. China’s Zhejiang’s Green Rural Revival Programme - Awarded in inspiration and action category.
French
Russian
German
Spanish
None of These


47. ______________ Updates -

  1. Test-fired Ghauri ballistic missile capable of carrying both conventional and nuclear warheads up to a distance of 1300 kilometres.
  2. Will launch its first manned mission in 2022, same year that India has planned to launch its own manned space mission Gaganyaan. It will be attempted with China's help.
Myanmar
Nepal
Bangladesh
Bhutan
Pakistan


48. Paytm launched QR-based smartphone payment settlement service in ______________, Named PayPay, in collaboration with SoftBank and Yahoo. It is built around its QRtech, which is deployed in India to allow customers to make offline payments.

Japan
China
Vietnam
Laos
None of These


49. __________________selected 19 start-up companies for its first global start-up collaboration programme named ‘AI in Healthcare for Radiology, Ultrasound and Oncology’. It will be conducted at innovation hubs in Bengaluru, Cambridge (US), Eindhoven (Netherlands) and Shanghai (China).

Samsung
Philips
Apple
Microsoft
None of These


50. QS Asia University Ranking 2018 -

  1. Indian Institute of Technology ______________ topped the Quacquarelli Symonds (QS) Asia University Rankings from India followed by IIT Delhi and IIT Madras.
  2. Eight Indian universities have figured among the top 100 in the list of Asia’s top 50 universities.
  3. There are 75 universities from India in the top 500 Asia list.
  4. National University of Singapore is ranked as Asia’s best university, followed by University of Hong Kong, Nanyang Technological University (Singapore), Tsinghua University (China) and Peking University (China).
Kanpur
Guwahati
Roorkee
Varanasi
Bombay


51. Queensland became 5th ______________ state to legalise abortion, allowing termination of pregnancy up to 22 weeks gestation, and thereafter with approval of doctors.

Australian
US
Russan
Spanish
None of These


52. RTI rating by Access Info Europe and the Centre for Law and Democracy , created by Transparency International -

  1. India ranked at __________________ position out of 123 countries, after a downfall of 4 positions from the previous year. India got a score of 128 out of 150. It noted that India doesn’t provide protection for whistleblowers.
  2. In India, total RTIs filed in 2017 were: 66.6 lakh, out of which, 4.8 lakh were rejected. Total number of second appeals were 18.5 lakh and total penalty imposed by CIC is 1.9 crore.
  3. Top 5 - Afghanistan, Mexico, Serbia, Sri Lanka, Slovenia. Austria Ranked Lowest.
8th
9th
6th 
4th
None of These


53. ___________ successfully launched a Soyuz-2.1B rocket for first time since failure of a similar rocket aborted a manned take-off to the International Space Station (ISS), on Oct 11.

USA
UK
Spain
Russia
None of These


54. SBI signed MoU with Kathmandu-based National Banking Institute (NBI) of _______________, for development of human resources of NBI. SBI will impart education, training and development to facilitate transformation of NBI's HR department.

Bhutan
Myanmar
Sri Lanka
Bangladesh
Nepal


55. _________________ agreed to provide $3 billion in foreign currency support for a year to Pakistan to help address Pakistan’s balance of payment crisis. It also agreed to provide a one-year deferred payment facility for import of oil, worth up to $3 billion.

China
UAE
Saudi Arabia
Iran
None of These


56. _________________ is only Indian company among top 10 firms to get foreign labour certification for the H-1B visas for the fiscal year 2018, according to data from US Department of Labour.

  1. H-1B visas are the most sought-after among Indian IT professionals. London-headquartered Ernst and Young emerged as top employer to have received the certification.
TCS
HCL
WIPRO
Tech Mahindra
None of These


57. Trident Juncture 18 (TRJE18) NATO-led military exercise to be held in _______________ in October and November 2018, as largest of its kind in _________ since 1980s. 50,000 participants from 31 nations will take part, including 10,000 vehicles, 250 aircraft and 65 vessels.

Sweden
Norway
Netherlands
Switzerland
None of These


58. _______________ Information Commissioner’s Office (ICO) fined Facebook a maximum amount of around $645,000 allowed under country’s law, over Cambridge Analytica scandal. ICO said the data of around 1 million users had been put at risk by Facebook. _________ government also allowed Women to apply for all roles in military services.

UK
USA
Russia
Spain
None of These


59. UK-based charity Oxfam International's 'Commitment to Reducing Inequality (CRI) Index -

  1. India ranked ___________________ among 157 countries, describing country's poor commitment to reducing inequality.
  2. Top 5 - Denmark (1), Germany (2), Finland (3), Australia (4), Norway (5).
  3. Bottom 5 - Nigeria (157), Uzbekistan (156), Haiti (155), Chad (154), Sieraa Leone (153).
  4. Neighbours - Bhutan (152), Bangladesh (148), Nepal (139), Pakistan (137), Sri Lanka (102), China (81)
147th
137th
127th
117th
None of These


60. UN will launch a project on creating an "inventory" of art forms, craftsmanship and other intangible cultural heritage of the country. A total of _______________ intangible cultural heritage elements from India have been inscribed till date on UNESCO's Representative List of the Intangible Cultural Heritage of Humanity.

43
23
3
13
None of These


61. ______________ Updates -

  1. _____________________ based Hyperloop Transportation Technologies or HyperloopTT launched first full-scale transportation capsule to be operational in 2019, named Quintero One. Its a 32-metre 5 tonne capsule, made a specially made dual-layer smart composite material called “Vibranium”.
    1. It can move at speeds of more than 750 miles (1,200 kilometers) per hour and has a capacity to hold 30 to 40 passengers.
    2. In May 2018, Andhra Pradesh signed Mou with HyperloopTT to set up Hyperloop transportation system connecting Anantapur, Amaravati, Vijayawada and Visakhapatnam, as part of 700-800-km-long integrated public transit system.
    3. Maharashtra government too signed pact with Richard Branson-led Virgin Group to build Mumbai-Pune Hyperloop.
    4. HyperloopTT would build the first Hyperloop system in China in the Guizhou province.
  2. ____ Based IT Firm IBM acquired software Firm Red Hat in a $34 billion cash and debt deal, as IBM's biggest ever acquisition so far. It will become a unit of IBM's Hybrid Cloud division.
  3. Merged its Consulate General with its new embassy in Israel into single diplomatic mission in Jerusalem, as part of US’s global efforts to improve efficiency and effectiveness of its operations. Earlier in May 2018, US moved its Israeli Embassy from Tel Aviv to Jerusalem.
    1. It will establish new Palestinian Affairs Unit inside embassy in Jerusalem to continue reporting, outreach and programming in West Bank and Gaza as well as with Palestinians in Jerusalem.
  4. Pulled out of 1955 Treaty of Amity with Iran, After International Court of Justice (ICJ) told US to lift sanctions on Iran which are linked to humanitarian goods and civil aviation. Iran took US to ICJ arguing that it violated terms of the treaty by imposing sanctions following withdrawal from 2015 nuclear deal.
  5. ______________ will pull out of three-decade-old Intermediate-Range Nuclear Forces (INF) treaty signed with Russia during Cold War.
    1. INF was crucial Cold War-era treaty banning development, testing and possession of short and medium range ground-launched nuclear missiles with range of 500-5,000 km, signed in December 1987 between USA and USSR.
    2. It was central to ending arms race between two superpowers during cold war and protected America’s NATO allies in Europe from Soviet missile attacks. It was designed to provide measure of some strategic stability on continent of Europe.
    3. USA alleged that Russia has violated treaty and has been violating it for many years. This violation comes after Russia’s alleged development and deployment of Novator 9M729 missile (also known as SSC-8), that could strike Europe at short notice.
    4. It will allow new nuclear weapon options in Pacific, to counter China’s growing influence and may also trigger new Arms race between USA & Russia.
Spain
Russia
UK
USA
None of These


62. ______________ began series of large-scale air force exercises with USA and other NATO countries, named Clear Sky 2018.

Russia
Ukraine
Mongolia
Spain
None of These


63. United Nations Children’s Fund (UNICEF) and World Health Organization (WHO) reiterated India’s status as ________________-free country, after some oral vaccine vials being found contaminated with the type-2 virus.

  1. They also asserted that all vaccines provided under Universal Immunization Programme (UIP) are safe and urged people to get their children vaccinated.
  2. India was certified _______________-free in March 2014 and it still continues to remain vigilant against all three types of viruses. Last case due to wild virus in country was detected on 13 January 2011.
Tuberculosis
Hepatitis
Measles
Rotavirus
Polio


64. United Nations Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change (IPCC) released special report on global warming in Incheon (____________________), with contributions from 91 authors from 40 countries. It will be key scientific input in upcoming Katowice Climate Change Conference in Poland in December 2018.

  1. It shows how half degree of warming makes big difference, adversely impacting global population and overall ecosystem.
  2. It is possible to meet new warming target, with nations taking rapid transitions over 10 to 20 years and reach net zero around 2050, 25 years earlier than planned under earlier 2-degree goal.
  3. It lists four pathways to curb global warming and through which the 1.5 degree target can be achieved. Also, Varying amounts between 100 to 1000 gigatons (billion tonnes) of CO2 needs to be removed from atmosphere in these four pathways.
  4. Advantages of keeping global temperature rise within 1.5 degrees celsius -
    1. By 2100, global sea level rise would be 10 cm lower with global warming of 1.5 degrees compared with 2 degrees Celsius.
    2. Arctic Ocean free of sea ice in summer would be once per century with global warming of 1.5 degrees, compared with at least once per decade with 2 degrees Celsius.
    3. Coral reefs will decline by 70-90% with global warming of 1.5 degrees, whereas virtually all (over 99%) would be lost with 2 degrees Celsius.
    4. Climate-related risks to health, livelihoods, food security, water supply, human security and economic growth are projected to increase with global warming of 1.5 degrees Celsius and increase further with 2 degrees Celsius.
South Korea
Vietnam
Japan
China
None of These


65. _____________ Updates -

  1. ___________ Owned International Finance Corporation (IFC) launched its $1 billion masala bond programme in the US and Europe, aimed at funding rapidly expanding investment activities of IFC in India.
    1. Masala bonds are rupee-denominated borrowings issued overseas. IFC uses them to raise rupee funds overseas and brings the proceeds to India for investments.
  2. Announced concessional loan worth USD 195 million to Nepal to reform country’s financial and energy sectors.
  3. Announced funding of up to $1 billion for the Indonesian government to supplement relief and reconstruction efforts in wake of the earthquake and tsunami that hit the country last month.
  4. Released its East Asia and Pacific economy update October 2018 edition.
    1. Countries of the East Asia and Pacific region will grow at 6.3 per cent in 2018 mainly due to China’s moderate growth, down from 6.6 % growth of region in 2017.
IMF
ADB
NDB
World Bank
None of These


66. World Bank released World Development Report 2019, with Theme The Changing Nature of Work. As part of report, World Bank launched a Human Capital Project (HCP), claimed to be a program of advocacy, measurement, and analytical work to raise awareness and increase demand for interventions to build human capital.

  1. There are three components of HCP - Human capital measurement metric called Human Capital Index (HCI)a programme of measurement and research to inform policy action, and a programme of support for country strategies to accelerate investment in human capital.
  2. Human Capital index (HCI) -
    1. HCI is constructed for 157 countries. It measures amount of human capital that a child born today can expect to attain by age 18. HCI has three components -
      1. Survival, as measured by under-5 mortality rates.
      2. Expected years of Quality-Adjusted School 
      3. Health environment using two proxies of adult survival rates and rate of stunting for children under age 5.
    2. How World Banks' HCI Is different from UNDP's Human Development Index (HDI) -
      1. HIC uses survival rates and stunting rate instead of life expectancy as measure of health, and quality-adjusted learning instead of merely years of schooling as measure of education.
      2. Two significant changes from HDI are exclusion of income component and introduction of quality adjustment in learning. Exclusion of income element and introduction of quality adjustment makes HCI far less representative of Human Capital Development than Index claims it to be.
    3. Observations of 1st HCI Report -
      1. For 56% of world’s population, HCI is below 0.50, for 92% it is at or below 0.75. Hence only 8% of the population can expect to be 75% as productive as they could be.
      2. Advanced economies such as North America and Europe mostly have HCI value of above 0.75, while South Asia and Sub Saharan Africa have lowest HCI.
      3. Top 5 - Singapore (1), South Korea (2), Japan (3), Hong Kong (4),Finland (5)
      4. Bottom 5 - Chad (157), South Sudan (156), Niger (155), Mali (154), Liberia (153)
      5. Neighbours - China (46), Bangladesh (106), Pakistan (134), Sri Lanka (74), Nepal (102)
      6. Report in Context of India -
        1. HCI for India is estimated at 0.44, ranked ______________________________________.
        2. There has been improvement in HCI components  in India  over last five years.
        3. Probability of Survival to Age 5 is 96 %.
        4. In India, a child who starts school at age 4 can expect to complete 10.2 years of school by her 18th birthday.
        5. Harmonized Test Scores: Students in India score 355 on a scale where 625 represents advanced attainment and 300 represents minimum attainment.
        6. Across India, 83 per cent of 15-year olds will survive until age 60.
        7. In India, HCI for girls is marginally higher than for boys. 
        8. Further, India finds the report Insignificant as -
          1. Quality adjusted learning has been measured in case of India by using the data as old as 2009.
          2. Purpose of Index is to create political incentive for increased spending on health and education. Unfortunately, indicators used are so slow moving that none can really be excited about setting out programme of Index improvement.  
          3. HCI score for India does not reflect the key initiatives that are being taken for developing human capital, Including -
            1. Samagra Shiksha Abhiyan
            2. Ayushman Bharat Programme (world’s largest Health Insurance initiative providing 500 million citizens with adequate health coverage)
            3. Swatch Bharat Abhiyaan that triggered Sanitation coverage expansion from 38% in 2014 to 83% in 2018, under Swachh Bharat Mission.
            4. Pradhan Mantri Ujjwala Yojana that provided over 4 Crore women with LPG connection to replace firewood and coke based cooking stoves.
103rd
125th
115th
135th
None of These


67. ___________________ launched first global guidelines on sanitation and health, aimed at securing health and wellbeing for everyone, everywhere by considering sanitation as fundamental foundation of human health and development. By adopting these, countries can significantly reduce diarrhoeal deaths due to unsafe water, sanitation and hygiene.

World Bank
World Health Organization (WHO)
IMF
ADB
None of These


68. _______________ has set up a panel to look into the India-US export-subsidy dispute, on request of the US to examine the allegations on India’s export incentive measures.

  1. US has challenged India’s export subsidy programmes such as Merchandise Exports from India Scheme in the WTO, stating that these initiatives were harming its companies.
  2. According to US, all WTO members, including India, are required to provide subsidies consistent with provisions of WTO’s Agreement on Subsidies and Countervailing Measures.
World Customs Organization
World Trade Organization
World Health Organization
IMF
None of These


69. World’s Most Innovative University Report, by Reuters news agency rankings -

  1. It was first published in 2015, since then there has been no mention of any Indian university in the list.
  2. In top 100, 48 universities are from North America, 23 from Asia, 27 from Europe and 2 from Middle East. US dominated with 46 universities among top 100.
  3. Top 10 -
    1. Stanford University (______________________)
    2. Massachusetts Institute of Technology (US)
    3. Harvard University (US)
    4. University of Pennsylvania (US)
    5. University of Washington(US)
    6. University of Texas System(US)
    7. KU Leuven (Belgium)
    8. Imperial College London (United Kingdom)
    9. University of North Carolina (US)
    10. Vanderbilt University (US)
Spain
Russia
UK
US
None of These


70. World’s largest airport terminal under one roof with a capacity to serve 90 million passengers will be opened in Istanbul (______________________), Dubbed as phase-1A of project Istanbul New Airport. It will have a capacity to handle 90 million passenger per year, making it largest such facility in world.

Turkey
Spain
France
Russia
None of These




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