Q.1) With respect to Petrichor Process, consider the following statements:

1.Petrichor is an earthy smell that permeates the air before a rain event.
2.Actinobacteria which decomposes dead or decaying organic matter into simple chemical compounds is the main contributor of this process.
Geosmin is a type of alcohol which contributes to the petrichor scent.
Which of the statement(s) given above is/are correct?

a. 1 and 2 only
b. 1 and 3 only
c. 2 and 3 only
d. 1, 2 and 3

Answer : D
Petrichor Process

Rain has no scent but moments before a rain event, an “earthy” smell known as petrichor does permeate the air.
This smell actually comes from the moistening of the ground.
Petrichor is a combination of fragrant chemical compounds of which some are from oils made by plants.
The main contributor to petrichor is actinobacteria, a tiny microorganism which can be found in rural and urban areas as well as in marine environments.
They decompose dead or decaying organic matter into simple chemical compounds which can then become nutrients for developing plants and other organisms.
A byproduct of their activity is an organic compound called geosmin, a type of alcohol, like rubbing alcohol, which contributes to the petrichor scent.
The Process

During a prolonged period of dryness when it has not rained for several days, the decomposition activity rate of the actinobacteria slows down.
Just before a rain event, the air becomes more humid and the ground begins to moisten.
This process helps to speed up the activity of the actinobacteria and more geosmin is formed.
When raindrops fall on the ground, especially porous surfaces such as loose soil or rough concrete, they will splatter and eject tiny particles called aerosols.
The geosmin and other petrichor compounds are released in aerosol form and carried by the wind to surrounding areas.
If the rainfall is heavy enough, the petrichor scent can travel rapidly downwind and alert people that rain is soon on the way.

Q.2) Least Developed Countries Report is an annual report published by?

a. World Trade Organisation
b. UN Development Programme
c. UN Conference on Trade and Development
d. UN Industrial Development Organization

Answer : C
Least Developed Countries Report, 2021

The Least Developed Countries Report 2021 was released recently by the United Nations Conference on Trade and Development (UNCTAD).
This annual report provides a comprehensive and authoritative source of socio-economic analysis and data on the world’s most impoverished countries.
Highlights of the Report

The growth performance of LDCs over the past 50 years has been characterized by an overall sluggish and uneven record.
Real GDP for the LDC group increased 5-fold since the LDC category was created in 1971.
The Gross Domestic Product (GDP) per capita for LDC group is less than 10% of the world average (2019).
Major shortcomings of the development experience of the LDCs over the past 50 years have been laid bare by the outbreak of the COVID-19 crisis.
Least Developed Countries

There are 46 countries are designated by the United Nations as LDCs.
The list of LDCs is reviewed every 3 years by the Committee for Development Policy (CDP), a group of independent experts that report to the United Nations Economic and Social Council (ECOSOC).
After a triennial review of the list, the CDP recommends to ECOSOC, countries for addition to the list or graduation from LDC status.
Criteria for LDC category

Per capita income
Human Assets Index
Economic and Environmental Vulnerability Index

Q.3) Who among the following was assisted Qutb-ud-din Aibak in conquering Bihar and Bengal?
a) Muhammad Ghori
b) Muhammad Bin Bhakthiyar Khalji
c) Iltutmish
d) Balban

Answer: B
Qutb-ud-din Aibak was enslaved as a boy and sold to Sultan Muhammad Ghori at Ghazni.
Impressed with his ability and loyalty the Sultan elevated him to the rank of viceroy of the conquered provinces in India.
Muhammad Bin Bhakthiyar Khalji, a Turkish general from Afghanistan assisted him in conquering Bihar and Bengal.
Qutb-ud-din Aibak reigned for four years (1206 to 1210 CE) and died in 1210 in Lahore in an accident while playing chaugan.

Q.4) Who among the following was the first ruler to pay his soldiers in cash?
a) Ashoka
b) Balban
c) Gautamiputra Satakarni
d) Alauddin Khalji

Answer: D
Ala-ud-din was the first Sultan to pay his soldiers in cash rather than give them a share of booty.
As the soldiers were paid less, the prices had to be monitored and controlled. Moreover, Ala-ud-din had to maintain a huge standing army.
In order to restrict prices of essential commodities, Ala-ud-din set up an elaborate intelligence network to collect information on black-marketing and hoarding.
The transactions in the bazaars, the buying and selling and the bargains made were all reported to the Sultan by his spies.
Market superintendents, reporters and spies had to send daily reports on the prices of essential commodities.
Violators of the price regulations were severely punished. If any deficiency in weight was found, an equal weight of flesh was cut from the seller’s body and thrown down before his eyes!

Q.5) With reference to Foreign Contribution (Regulation) Act (FCRA), consider the following statements:

1.It is implemented by the Ministry of Finance.
2.The Act makes Aadhaar number mandatory for all office bearers, directors or key functionaries of a person receiving foreign contribution, as an identification document.
Which of the above statements is/are correct?

a) 1 only
b) 2 only
c) Both 1 and 2
d) Neither 1 nor 2

Answer : B

Foreign Contribution (Regulation) Act (FCRA):

Foreign funding of persons in India is regulated under FCRA Act and is implemented by the Ministry of Home Affairs.
The Act ensures that the recipients of foreign contributions adhere to the stated purpose for which such contribution has been obtained.

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