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IAS Weekly Challenge

Q1: Which of the following statements is/are incorrect about "Beti Bachao, Beti Padhao" scheme of the Union government?
1. It has provisions for individual cash transfers to promote girl education.
2. It is a social campaign to celebrate birth of girl child.
Select the correct answer using the code given below.
(a) 1 only
(b) 2 only
(c) Both 1 and 2
(d) Neither 1 nor 2

Q2: The theme for Pravasi Bhartiya Diwas, 2019 is:
(a) Engaging diaspora organisations
(b) Connecting for a shared future
(c) Redifining engagement with Indian diaspora
(d) Role of Indian Diaspora in building a New India

Q3: Consider the following statements:
1. Hastings separated the executive and judicial duties at district level.
2. Cornwallis established Provincial Courts of Civil Appeal.
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

Q4: Human impact on nature is more significant than any other organism mainly because they are:
1. Capable of altering course of evolution
2. Only animal with sustained rate of population growth
3. Tool making animals
Select the correct answer using the code given below.
(a) 1 and 3
(b) 2 and 3
(c) 1 and 2
(d) 1, 2 and 3

Q5: Ozone depletion will lead to:
1. Increase in incidence of cataracts
2. Fading of colors
3. Stratospheric cooling
4. Brittleness of plastics
Select the correct answer using the code given below.
(a) 1 only
(b) 1, 2 and 3
(c) 1, 2 and 4
(d) 1, 2, 3 and 4

Answers with Explanations:

1. (a) is the answer
Explanation: Statement 1 is incorrect. Government recently clarified that the scheme has no provision for individual CASH TRANSFER COMPONENT. Beti Bachao Beti Padhao scheme focuses on challenging mindsets and deep rooted patriarchy in the societal system, strict enforcement of PC & PNDT Act, advancing education of the girl child: focus is on issues of women empowerment on a life cycle continuum. It is not a DBT (Direct Benefit Transfer) scheme.
Statement 2 is correct. The strategy to implement BBBP is through social mobilization and communication campaign to create equal value for the girl child & promote her education.

2. (d) is the answer
Explanation: Pravasi Bharatiya Divas Convention is the flagship event of the Government and provides an important platform to engage and connect with the overseas Diaspora. The theme of PBD 2019 is "Role of Indian Diaspora in building a New India.” 15th Pravasi Bharatiya Divas Convention would be organized from 21 to 23 January 2019.

3. (b) is the answer
Explanation: In 1780-81, revenue and judicial administration in districts was entrusted to English officers which was the beginning of the ‘nucleus’ of the civil service with systematization and specialization of functions, essential to such service. Lord Cornwallis separated the executive and judicial duties at district level. For the civil cases SadarDiwaniAdalat was the highest appealing body followed by the four Provincial Courts of Civil Appeal at Calcutta, Dacca, Murshidabad and Patna.

4. (d) is the answer
Explanation: All the above statements are correct. Human impact on nature mainly includes changes in the ecosystem, biodiversity and natural resources caused by a direct or indirect action of humans. Some changes are global warming, environmental degradation, mass extinction etc.

5. (d) is the answer
Explanation: Stratospheric ozone filters out most of the sun's potentially harmful shortwave ultraviolet (UV) radiation. If this ozone becomes depleted, then more UV rays will reach the earth. Exposure to higher amounts of UV radiation could have serious impacts on human beings, animals and plants, such as the following:

(i) Harm to human health:
• More skin cancers, sunburns and premature aging of the skin.
• More cataracts, blindness and other eye diseases: UV radiation can damage several parts of the eye, including the lens, cornea, retina and conjunctiva.
• Cataracts (a clouding of the lens) are the major cause of blindness in the world. A sustained 10% thinning of the ozone layer is expected to result in almost two million new cases of cataracts per year, globally (Environment Canada, 1993).
• Weakening of the human immune system (immunosuppression). Early findings suggest that too much UV radiation can suppress the human immune system, which may play a role in the development of skin cancer.

(ii) Adverse impacts on agriculture, forestry and natural ecosystems:
• Several of the world's major crop species are particularly vulnerable to increased UV, resulting in reduced growth, photosynthesis and flowering. These species include wheat, rice, barley, oats, corn, soybeans, peas, tomatoes, cucumbers, cauliflower, broccoli and carrots.
• The effect of ozone depletion on the Canadian agricultural sector could be significant.
• Only a few commercially important trees have been tested for UV (UV-B) sensitivity, but early results suggest that plant growth, especially in seedlings, is harmed by more intense UV radiation.

(iii) Damage to marine life:
• In particular, plankton (tiny organisms in the surface layer of oceans) are threatened by increased UV radiation. Plankton are the first vital step in aquatic food chains.
• Decreases in plankton could disrupt the fresh and saltwater food chains, and lead to a species shift in Canadian waters.
• Loss of biodiversity in our oceans, rivers and lakes could reduce fish yields for commercial and sport fisheries.

(iv) Animals:
• In domestic animals, UV overexposure may cause eye and skin cancers. Species of marine animals in their developmental stage (e.g. young fish, shrimp larvae and crab larvae) have been threatened in recent years by the increased UV radiation under the Antarctic ozone hole.

(v)Materials:
• Wood, plastic, rubber, fabrics and many construction materials are degraded by UV radiation.
• The economic impact of replacing and/or protecting materials could be significant.

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