1. Which of the statements given is/are correct regarding the Somnath Temple?
1. It is situated in Gujarat.
2. Somnath temple is believed to be the place where the first of the twelve holy jyotirlingas emerged in India.
3. Mahmud Ghori looted the temple several times.
Select the correct answer using the codes given below:
(a) 1 and 2 only
(b) 1 and 3 only
(c) 2 and 3 only
(d) 1, 2 and 3
Statement 1 and 2 is correct: The intricately carved honey-coloured Somnath temple on the western edge of the Gujarat state is believed to be the place where the first of the twelve holy jyotirlingas emerged in India – a spot where Shiva appeared as a fiery column of light. The temples lies at the meeting of Kapila, Hiran and Sarasvati rivers and the waves of the Arabian Sea ebb and flow touching the shore on which it is constructed. The ancient temple’s timeline can be traced from 649 BC but is believed to be older than that. The present form was reconstructed in 1951. Colourful dioramas of the Shiva story line the north side of the temple garden, though it’s hard to see them through the hazy glass.
Statement 3 is incorrect: A description of the temple by Al-Biruni, an Arab traveller, was so glowing that it prompted a visit in 1024 by a most unwelcome tourist – the legendary looter Mahmud of Ghazni from Afghanistan. At that time, the temple was so wealthy that it had 300 musicians, 500 dancing girls and even 300 barbers. Mahmud of Ghazni took the town and temple after a two-day battle in which it’s said 70,000 defenders died. Having stripped the temple of its fabulous wealth, Mahmud destroyed it. So began a pattern of destruction and rebuilding that continued forcenturies. The temple was again razed in 1297, 1394 and finally in 1706 by Aurangzeb, the Mughal ruler. After that, the temple wasn’t rebuilt until 1950.
Source: https://www.gujarattourism.com/saurashtra/gir-somnath/somnath-temple.html

2. ‘Zycov-D’, recently in news is associated with:
(a) Light Combat Helicopter (LCH)
(b) Covid 19 Vaccine
(c) Pact signed between Taliban and Afghan government
(d) None of the above
Explanation: Option (b) is correct
The Drug Controller General has granted emergency approval to the Zycov-D, a COVID-19 vaccine developed by the Ahmedabad based Zydus Cadilla group, on Friday, making it the first vaccine in India that can be administered to adults as well as those 12 and above. It's also the only DNA-based vaccine in the world and can be administered without a needle, purportedly minimising chances of reactions.
Source: https://www.thehindu.com/news/national/zycov-d-indias-first-covid-19-vaccine-for-those-above-12-gets-nod/article36021251.ece

3. Recently in news, the Dalita Bandhu Scheme belongs to which state of India?
(a) Tamil Nadu
(b) Kerala
(c) Telangana
(d) Andhra Pradesh
Explanation: Option (c) is correct
The Telangana government’s income support scheme for farmers, the Rythu Bandhu scheme, received universal acclaim and was even replicated at the Central level, but its scheme for Scheduled Caste communities, the Dalita Bandhu scheme, has led to criticism from all quarters of the political spectrum, not least because the pilot project has been launched in a bypoll bound Assembly seat.
The scheme provides finance of up to rs10 lakh to Dalit families under 30 different projects without bank linkages.
Source: https://www.thehindu.com/news/national/trss-dalita-bandhu-scheme-criticised/article36015766.ece

4. With regard to National Mission on Edible Oils-Oil Palms (NMEO-OP), consider the following statements:
1. It is a project by the Union government to maximize cultivation and production is expected to bring in remarkable growth prospects for the palm oil industry.
2. State will contribute through viability gap funding.
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
Both statements 1 and 2 is correct: National Mission on Edible Oils-Oil Palm (NMEO-OP), a ₹11,040-crore project by the Union government to maximize cultivation and production, is expected to bring in remarkable growth prospects for the palm oil industry in the State.
While both farmers and refiners find the scheme extremely encouraging, it can also revitalise the estates run by Oil Palm India Limited and Plantation Corporation of Kerala. Since India is heavily dependent on imports when it comes to crude and refined palm oils, the industry stakeholders believe that the current development will be highly beneficial for the sector.
The NMEO-OP proposes to extend cultivation of oil palm, considered a top oil crop, to an additional 6.5 lakh hectare so that the crude palm oil (CPO) production touches 11.20 lakh tonnes by the 2025-26 financial year. In the total financial outlay of rs.11,040 crore, the share of the Centre will be rs.8,844 crore while the State share of rs.2,196 crore includes the viability gap funding as well.
Source: https://www.thehindu.com/news/national/kerala/national-mission-to-boost-palm-oil-industry-in-state/article36020539.ece

5. Recently, which country has formally passed the Three Chlld Poliy into law?
(a) Japan
(b) Spain
(c) France
(d) China
Explanation: Option (d) is correct
China’s legislature formally amended the country’s family planning rules to allow couples to have three children, also announcing a number of policy measures aimed at boosting declining birth rates.
The Standing Committee of the National People’s Congress, or Parliament, passed an amendment to the Population and Family Planning Law, state media said, adding that the amended law calls on the authorities to "take supportive measures, including those in finances, taxes, insurance, education, housing and employment, to reduce families' burdens as well as the cost of raising and educating children.”
Source: https://www.thehindu.com/news/international/china-approves-three-child-policy-with-sops-to-encourage-couples-to-have-more-children/article36010916.ece