1. Consider following statements about, the Production-Linked Incentive (PLI) Schemes:
1. Companies will be provided incentives on incremental sales from products manufactured in India, over the base year.
2. They are designed to curb cheaper imports.
3. There is no minimum investment criterion for any sector under the PLI scheme.
Which of the statements is/are correct?
(a) 1 and 2 only
(b) 1 and 3 only
(c) 1 only
(d) 1 and 3 only

Explanation: Option (a) is correct
In the Union Budget 2021-22, the Finance Minister announced an outlay of INR 1.97 Lakh Crores for the Production-Linked Incentive (PLI) Schemes for 13 key sectors, to create national manufacturing champions and generate employment opportunities for the country’s youth. This means that minimum production in India as a result of PLI Schemes is expected to be over US$ 500 billion in 5 years.
The PLI scheme across specific sectors will make Indian manufacturers globally competitive, attract investment in the areas of core competency and cutting-edge technology; ensure efficiencies; create economies of scale; enhance exports and make India an integral part of the global supply chain.
The objective is to make domestic manufacturing globally competitive and to create global Champions in manufacturing. The strategy behind scheme is to offer companies incentives on incremental sales from products manufactured in India, over the base year. They have been specifically designed to boost domestic manufacturing in sunrise and strategic sectors, curb cheaper imports and reduce import bills, improve cost competitiveness of domestically manufactured goods, and enhance domestic capacity and exports.
Statement 1 is correct:
The strategy behind scheme is to offer companies incentives on incremental sales from products manufactured in India, over the base year.
Statement 2 is correct:
The PLI schemes have been specifically designed to boost domestic manufacturing in sunrise and strategic sectors, curb cheaper imports and reduce import bills, improve cost competitiveness of domestically manufactured goods, and enhance domestic capacity and exports.

Statement 3 is incorrect:
Recently Government has removed the eligibility criterion of minimum investment for its production-linked incentive (PLI) scheme for drug ingredients and medical device makers. But in textile sector has the minimum investment criterion of Rs. 100 crores under the PLI scheme for MMF segment and technical textiles.

Source: https://www.thehindu.com/todays-paper/tp-business/combine-investments-in-textiles-under-pli-official/article36621935.ece
https://pib.gov.in/PressReleasePage.aspx?PRID=1710134
https://www.pib.gov.in/PressReleasePage.aspx?PRID=1671912
https://www.livemint.com/news/india/govt-removes-minimum-investment-norms-for-bulk-drug-pli-scheme-11603955970313.html

2. Consider following statements:
1. The National Investigation Agency (NIA) has been created by an executive order of the Government and its not a statutory organization
2. The Unlawful Activities (Prevention) Amendment Bill, 2019 empowers the government to designate individuals as terrorists if they commit or participate in the acts of terrorism, prepare for acts of terror, promote terrorism or are otherwise involved in terrorism
3. The Unlawful Activities (Prevention) Amendment Bill, 2019 gives power to Director-General of the National Investigation Agency to attach properties acquired from proceeds of terrorism.
Which of the statements 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
Explanation: Option (c) is correct
The National Investigation Agency (NIA) has been constituted under the NIA Act, 2008 to investigate and prosecute offences affecting the sovereignty, security and integrity of India, security of State, friendly relations with foreign States and offences under Acts enacted to implement international treaties, agreements, conventions and resolutions of the United Nations, its agencies and other international organisations and for matters connected therewith or incidental thereto.
The Unlawful Activities Prevention (UAPA) Bill is an anti-terror legislation. The Unlawful Activities (Prevention) Act, 1967 was legislated to fight Naxalist. The UAPA amendment 2019 was passed by parliament in August 2019. Major provisions of the UAPA amendment 2019 are following:
•    Under the Act, the central government may designate an organisation as a terrorist organisation if it: (i) commits or participates in acts of terrorism, (ii) prepares for terrorism, (iii) promotes terrorism, or (iv) is otherwise involved in terrorism.  The Bill additionally empowers the government to designate individuals as terrorists on the same grounds.  
•    The earlier UAPA law requires an investigating officer to take prior permission of the Director General of Police of a state for conducting raids, and seizing properties that are suspected to be linked to terrorist activities. The amendment Bill, however, removed this requirement if the investigation is conducted by an officer of the National Investigation Agency (NIA). The investigating officer, under the Bill, only requires sanction from the Director General of NIA.
•    The existing UAPA law specifies that only officers of the rank of Deputy Superintendent or Assistant Commissioner of Police of the NIA shall have the power to investigate offences under the UAPA law. The Bill allows NIA officers of Inspector rank to carry out investigations.
•    The Bill added the International Convention for Suppression of Acts of Nuclear Terrorism (2005) within the scope of any of the treaties listed in a schedule to the Act.
Statement 1 is incorrect:
The National Investigation Agency (NIA) is statutory organisation as it has been constituted under the NIA Act, 2008
Statement 2 is correct:
One of the most controversial provision of the Unlawful Activities (Prevention) Amendment Bill, 2019 was its empowerment of the government to designate individuals as terrorists if they commit or participate in the acts of terrorism, prepare for acts of terror, promote terrorism or are otherwise involved in terrorism
Statement 3 correct:
The Unlawful Activities (Prevention) Amendment Bill, 2019 gives power to Director-General of the National Investigation Agency to attach properties acquired from proceeds of terrorism
Source: https://www.thehindu.com/todays-paper/tp-national/terrorism-knows-no-age-nia-tells-sc/article36621980.ece
https://pib.gov.in/PressReleasePage.aspx?PRID=1559109
https://prsindia.org/billtrack/the-unlawful-activities-prevention-amendment-bill-2019

3.  Consider following statements:
1. The National Ambient Air Quality Standards (NAAQS) released by the Central Pollution Control Board (CPCB) are based on Global Air Quality Guidelines (AQGs), whose upper limit of pollutants standard are decided by the World Health Organisation (WHO)
2. The National Clean Air Programme aims for reduction of 75% in particulate matter concentrations by 2024 keeping 2017 as base year for the comparison, in all non-attainment city of India
3. Air quality of cities is monitored by respective State Pollution Control Boards
Which of the statements given above is/are correct?
(a) 1 and 2 only
(b) 2 and 3 only
(c) 2 only
(d) 3 only

Explanation: Option (d) is correct
Under Air (Prevention and Control of Pollution) Act, 1981 Government of India enacted to arrest the deterioration in the air quality. The act prescribes various functions for the Central Pollution Control Board (CPCB) at the apex level and State Pollution Control Boards at the state level. One of the main functions of the CPCB is to collect, compile and publish technical and statistical data related to air pollution; and to lay down and annual standards for the quality of air.
National Ambient Air Quality Standards (NAAQS) are the standards for ambient air quality set by the Central Pollution Control Board (CPCB) that is applicable nationwide.
Recently The World Health Organisation (WHO), in its first-ever update since 2005, has tightened global air pollution standards in recognition of the emerging science in the past decade that the impact of air pollution on health is much more serious than earlier envisaged. The move does not have an immediate effect in India as the National Ambient Air Quality Standards (NAAQS) do not meet the WHO’s existing standards.
The Central Government launched National Clean Air Programme (NCAP) in 2019 as a long-term, time-bound, national level strategy to tackle the air pollution problem across the country in a comprehensive manner with targets to achieve 20% to 30% reduction in Particulate Matter concentrations by 2024 keeping 2017 as the base year for the comparison of concentration. Under NCAP, 122 non-attainment cities have been identified across the country based on the Air Quality data from 2014-2018.
Air quality of cities is monitored by State Pollution Control Boards which publishes their results from time to time.
Statement 1 is incorrect:
The National Ambient Air Quality Standards (NAAQS) are set by the Central Pollution Control Board (CPCB) and the NAAQS do not meet the WHO’s existing standards at present.
Statement 2 is incorrect:
The National Clean Air Programme aims to achieve 20% to 30% reduction in Particulate Matter concentrations by 2024 keeping 2017 as the base year for the comparison of concentration
Statement 3 is correct:
Air quality of cities is monitored by respective State Pollution Control Boards

Source: https://www.thehindu.com/todays-paper/tp-national/who-tightens-global-air-quality-norms/article36621975.ece
https://www.outlookindia.com/website/story/world-news-explained-what-are-the-who-global-air-quality-guidelines/395448
https://pib.gov.in/PressReleasePage.aspx?PRID=1655203

4. In which one of the following groups are all the three countries members of newly formed security alliance AUKUS?
(a) Australia, Canada and New Zealand
(b) Australia, United Kingdom and United States of America
(c) India, Japan and France
(d) Australia, New Zealand and Fiji

Explanation: Option (b) is correct
AUKUS is trilateral security partnership (AUKUS) between Australia, the U.K. and the U.S.. The AUKUS pact was worked out behind closed doors and came as a surprise to other nations.
Formation of AUKUS has caused furor in international politics.  France has recalled its Ambassadors to the U.S. and Australia, accusing them of betrayal by negotiating their defence partnership with the U.K., and without informing European allies.
 India also has made it clear that it does not welcome the announcement, nor does it wish to link AUKUS to Indian interests.
Source: https://www.thehindu.com/todays-paper/tp-international/biden-speaks-to-macron-to-smooth-tensions/article36622069.ece
https://indianexpress.com/article/opinion/columns/india-dithered-over-projecting-naval-power-now-its-been-pushed-to-the-sidelines-of-the-indo-pacific-7530473/

5. Emission Gap report is released by-
(a) the United Nations Environment Programme (UNEP)
(b) The World Wide Fund for Nature (WWF)
(c) The World Economic Forum (WEF)
(d) The World Meteorological Organization (WMO)

Explanation: Option (a) is correct
Emission Gap report is annual publication of the United Nations Environment Programme (UNEP). The UNEP Emissions Gap Report provides a yearly review of the difference between where greenhouse emissions are predicted to be in 2030 and where they should be to avoid the worst impacts of climate change.
The Emission Gap report-2020 finds that, despite a brief dip in carbon dioxide emissions caused by the COVID-19 pandemic, the world is still heading for a temperature rise in excess of 3°C this century – far beyond the Paris Agreement goals of limiting global warming to well below 2°C and pursuing 1.5°C.

Source: https://www.thehindu.com/todays-paper/tp-opinion/sea-level-rise-is-certain/article36621956.ece
https://www.unep.org/emissions-gap-report-2020