Directions for Questions 1 to 10: Five statements are given below, labeled a, b, c, d and e. Among these, four statements are in logical order and form a coherent paragraph/passage. From the given options, choose the option that does not fit into the theme of the passage.
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- A. The decentralisation of public administration and the introduction of local elected bodies produces systems of governance that will be better able to meet the needs of the citizens.
B. The local governments in rural India, which, though also limited in their functionality, have significantly more power than their urban counterparts.
C. If it works well, citizens in small communities will have the power to hold their elected representatives accountable for policy decisions.
D. Behind India’s decentralisation policy was the motive of the broadening of the political spectrum.
E. It can also help in yielding policy outcomes more uniquely tailored to the needs of these communities.
AnswerAnswer – B
- A. Samsung Electronics is investigating claims by a German hacking group that it fooled the iris recognition system of the new flagship Galaxy S8 device.
B. Chaos Computer Club (CCC), proved that the Galaxy S8 can be unlocked using a printed photo of the owner’s eye covered with a contact lens to replicate the curvature of a real eyeball.
C. Samsung’s hopes of competing against archrival Apple’s iPhone had been pinned on the Galaxy S8 after last year’s Note 7 disaster.
D. The CCC previously demonstrated a way to defeat Apple’s Touch ID fingerprint sensors just weeks after the first iPhone 5s hit the shelves.
E. “A high-resolution picture from the internet is sufficient to capture an iris,” CCC spokesman said, adding: “Ironically, we got the best results with laser printers made by Samsung.”
AnswerAnswer – C
- A. These changes in the law are praiseworthy except that they do not go far enough or are not wide enough to cover the women and families who really need these benefits.
B. One of the amendments to the Maternity Benefit Act, 1961, passed in the Lok Sabha grants women 26 weeks of fully paid maternity leave as opposed to the earlier 12 weeks.
C. At a time when amendments to labour laws are invariably curtailing worker rights, the Maternity Benefit (Amendment) Act (MBA), 2017 passed earlier this year is certainly welcome.
D. This obviously enforces the patriarchal belief that childcare is entirely the woman’s job.
E. The MBA leaves out 90% to 97% of the total female workforce in the country which works in the unorganised sector like domestic workers, agricultural labourers and home-based ones.
AnswerAnswer – D
- A. In February, the PM promised farm loan waivers in Uttar Pradesh, and the State government soon delivered on it.
B. States like Bihar and Andhra Pradesh have also been recipients of the Centre’s special welfare packages.
C. Prime Minister Narendra Modi came to power with the promise of ‘minimum government, maximum governance’, however, the policies adopted have been populist in nature.
D. The government provided the highest-ever allocation of Rs.48,000 crore to Mahatma Gandhi National Rural Employment Guarantee Scheme (MGNREGS).
E. The demonetisation episode showed that the government is free to play around with the rupee, while the unsavoury exit of Raghuram Rajan showed that India is far from having an independent central bank.
AnswerAnswer – E
- A. In the light of this definition, the Child Labour (Prohibition and Regulation) Amendment Act, 2016, passed last month in Parliament, seems progressive.
B. The list of hazardous occupations for children has been slashed from 83 to include just mining, explosives, and occupations mentioned in the Factory Act.
C. It prohibits the engagement of children in all occupations and of adolescents in hazardous occupations and processes, wherein adolescents refers to those under 18 years; children to those under 14.
D. It deters people from employing children by imposing a fine on anyone who employs or permits adolescents to work.
E. According to UNICEF, a child is involved in child labour if he or she, does at least one hour of economic activity, or at least 28 hours of domestic work in a week.
AnswerAnswer – B
- A. The vast majority of children had lead levels of over 45 micrograms per deciliter of blood, which causes brain, liver and hearing damage
B. High levels of toxins in the air have rendered many people mentally challenged. They are far inferior to their counterparts in other regions.
C. The metal, still used around the world in car batteries, is a potent neurotoxin and is particularly damaging to children.
D. Almost a century of lead mining and smelting has left a truly toxic legacy in Kabwe, the once-thriving town of 220,000 people in central Africa’s Copperbelt.
E. There is a now a fund of about $1.7m that will be spent on cleaning up Kabwe’s toxic pollution, providing the drug therapies and repairing the clogged canal.
AnswerAnswer – E
- A. There are still areas of immense natural beauty and biodiversity that have changed little.
B. It has emerged as a symbol of the resurgent influence of a landowning class in Brazil who, are cashing in on the destruction of the wild.
C. The cattle raised here are then sold – in contravention of pledges to prosecutors and international consumers – to JBS, the world’s biggest meat-packing company,
D. Brazil reported an alarming 29% increase of deforestation, raising doubts that the country will be able to meet its global commitments to reduce carbon emissions.
E. On the banks of the Rio Verde, fishing lines were tangled on the rocks despite signs declaring ‘Strictly no fishing or hunting’.
AnswerAnswer – A
- A. It is hard for Amardilo to repopulate because of the low metabolic rate, small litter size, prolonged parental care and long gestation periods.
B. Armadillo, the mascot for the 2014 Football World Cup, is now a symbol for a very different phenomenon in Brazil.
C. The small armoured mammal was chosen to represent the tournament because it rolls up into the shape of a football when threatened.
D. Late last year, the International Union for Conservation of Nature raised the alarm by reclassifying the creature – also known as the three-banded armadillo – from “vulnerable” to “at risk of extinction”.
E. This has prompted the group that led the campaign for its selection as a mascot to launch a crowd funding drive last month to raise $500,000 to save the animal.
AnswerAnswer – A
- A. The European Commission and national governments mostly attempt to regulate the companies through competition, by assuming that the states’ functions should be to provide a “level playing field“ for local companies.
B. The US government sees them as pillars of post-industrial American power, and as an immense national security intelligence resource. It is therefore their strategic ally.
C. Proponents of “digital sovereignty“, , have chosen to build national search engines and social media structures, favouring domestic private market entrants – as has happened in Russia and China.
D. The European Union has attempted to control the companies’ behaviour by regulation and litigation
E. The world’s major societies are now wrestling with the enormous social power wielded by the internet’s platform companies – “GAFA“: Google, Apple, Facebook and Amazon.
AnswerAnswer – B
- A. The 23 May decision of Judge Bharat Parashar to sentence IAS officer Harish Chandra Gupta to two years’ imprisonment has sent shock waves through the bureaucracy.
B. It brings to light significant aspects about how the law is enforced in the country.
C. The illegality in the allotment of coal blocks for captive use by private firms was thrown open when Comptroller and Auditor General (CAG) of India presented a damning report in 2012.
D. The crucial question thrown up is why the judiciary has not accused the political masters of civil servants guilty of fleecing the exchequer and worthy of incarceration.
E. The the manner in which an ambiguity in a legal provision offers scope for misuse of discretionary powers and the way in which criminal proceedings take place
F. Nor, it seems, have investigative agencies like the CBI displayed similar zeal in proceeding against politicians, as they have in the cases of bureaucrats and businesspersons who work in concert with them.
AnswerAnswer – 2.C
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