Time Allowed : Three Hours Maximum Marks : 300
Answers must be in the medium specified in the Admission Certificate issued to you, which must be stated clearly on the cover of the answer-book in the space provided for the purpose. No marks will be given for the answers written in a medium other than that specified in the Admission Certificate.
Candidates should attempt ALL questions strictly in accordance with the instructions given under each question.
Two (2) graph sheets are attached to this question paper for attempting questions 9(b) and 10 (c). The graph sheets are to be carefully detached from the question paper and surely attached to the answer-book by the candidate.
Q. 1 Answer any TWO of the following in about 250 words each: 20 × 2 = 40
(a) List the Central Asian Republics and identify those of particular strategic and economic importance to India. Examine the opportunities and bottlenecks in enhancing relations with these countries.
Important Points for Answer:
• Central Asian Republics
• Strategic and economic importance
• Opportunities in relations
• Bottlenecks in relations
Answer: The Central Asian Republics are Uzbekistan, Kazakhstan, Kyrgyzstan and Tajikistan.
The Central Asian Region, as a whole, not only connects Asia to Europe, but is also rich in natural resources. It provides the shortest transit route to Europe from Asia, and has a 55-million strong consumer market. It therefore occupies a special place in India’s foreign policy priorities.
Unlike the past, the importance to India today is not merely civilisational, but also geopolitical and economic. India has joined in the “New great game” in the Central Asian region for the area’s vast energy resources. India considers Turkmenistan an extended neighbour, a natural ally and a key partner in Central Asia.
India’s Vice-President Hameed Ansari visited Kazakhstan and signed MoU, expressing readiness to work on a project specific made of hydrocarbon sector, food production, information technology and education.
Bottlenecks : One of the major issues standing in the way of greater relation between India and Central Asian States is a lack of efficient transportation capabilities, road, railways, etc. However, the Indian press has reported that an International North-South transport Corridor linking Central Asia with India will soon be developed by the recent steps taken by Kazakhstan, Turkmenistan and Russia to increase road and rail connectivity, may help in the development of the corridor.
India is surrounded by Unstable or Authoritative states, so direct access to the Central Asia is difficult as the route passes through the Pak-Afghanistan region. China’s growing influence in the region is also a hurdle for India’s growth in that region.
(b) Criticallyexamine the security and strategic implications of the so-called ‘string of pearls’ theory for India.
Important Points for Answer:
• String of pulse theory
• Implications for India
Answer: China’s ‘String of Pearls’ policy started in the 1980 and its basic aim was to give China increased energy security with requesting stations through the world.
‘String of pearl’ describes the manifestation of China’s rising geo-political influence through efforts to increase access to ports and airfields, develop special diplomatic relationships and modernize military forces that extend from the South China Sea through the Strait of Malacca, across the Indian ocean and on to the Arabian Gulf.
As a part of that, China has helped Sri Lanka in developing its Hambantota port in Southern Sri Lanka, though China says its commercial, China’s naval presence in Hambantota would add to the concerns of the Indian Navy.
Similarly, China had helped Pakistan with a similar project in Gwadar on the Mekran Coast in Baluchistan, the first phase already completed.
Though India is trying to make a strong hold in South Asia, China seems to have been making consistently over the last four decades to strengthen its South Asian presence and fulfill its string of pearl policy, and that has made India worried.
Recently China has announced its decision to set up a naval base of Sychelles Island on the Indian Ocean, which caused grave concern to India.
The ‘String of Pearl’ policy includes the following steps taken by China in India’s neighbouring countries.
(i) building road in PoK.
(ii) building road from China-Gilgit-Neelam valley also planned number of tunnels and bridges.
(iii) The Karakoram Highway which connects China’s Xinjian region with North- Pakistan (The highway called the 9th wonder of the world by some because of its altitude). Naval port at Gwadar on the Makran Coast in Baluchistan, Pakistan.
(iv) Naval base at Sychelles island, in Indian Ocean.
Which makes India to worry about its security and sovereignty in.the region and also in the Indian Ocean and Southern hemisphere.
(c) “Compared to the South Asian Free Trade Area (SAFTA), the Bay of Bengal Initiative for Multisectoral Technical and Economic Cooperation Free Trade Area (BIMSTEC FTA) seems to be more promising.” Critically evaluate.
Important Points for Answer:
- BIMSTEC FTA
Answer: The present situation retreats that there are enormous opportunities for forging closer economic relations among SAARC countries. These opportunities could be fully utilised through twin process of trade liberalisation and industrial restructuring which are complementary to each other.
SAFTA which came into effect in January 2006, has been below the potential PTA. The intra-trade between the SAARC countries stands at US $ 4 million as compared to its potential of US $ 80 billion.
The main reasons being the self-interest of the member countries, viewing India as possessing the “big-brother” attitude despite India’s attempt to dispel fears of the smaller countries of SAARC.
SAARC is a geo-political region rather than an economic block as evidenced by the increased participation of China and the most important factor being the rivalry of India and Pakistan which has led Pakistan not to grant MFN status to India. Now, Pakistan has announced MFN status to India after a long delay since India has given MFN status to Pakistan long before.
On the other hand, BIMSTEC member countries agreed to establish the BIMSTEC Free Trade Area frame work agreement in order to stimulate trade and investment in the partners. It holds greater promises to India. BIMSTEC along with the Mekong Ganga Cooperation can act as a gateway to greater access to the large ASEAN Services market of 565 million service buyers.
Therefore, India has been actively signing many PTAs bilaterally with the ASEAN members like Singapore, Malaysia and Thailand.
India occupies 70% of the SAARC region, both geographically and economically, and the remaining 6 nations of the SAARC borders only with India and not with each other. As the biggest and the most industrialised trading partner among the SAARC countries, India has to recognise that a special responsibility devolves on her and take a lead in making a regional economic co-operation or reality in South Asia.
Q. 2 Answer any THREE of the following in about 150 words each : 12 × 3 = 36
(a) Subsequent to the Nuclear Suppliers’ Group (NSG) waiver in 2008, what are the agreements on nuclear energy that India has signed with different countries ?
Important Points for Answer:
- Waiver for India
• Nuclear energy agreements
Answer: (a) India has a flourishing and largely indigenous nuclear power program and expects to have 20,000 MWe nuclear capacity on line by 2020 and 63,000 MWe by 2032. It aims to supply 25% of electricity from nuclear power by 2050.
After the 34 years exclusion, India was given the waiver of the NSG and has been recognised as the de facto nuclear power. It paved the way for major international companies to have a share in the vast nuclear market of India. France was the first country to sign the civil nuclear deal in 2008 followed by eight other countries.
These are Russia, Mongolia, Namibia, Argentina, UK, Canada, Kazakhastan and South Korea.
Recently, Australia, the largest uranium exporter of the world, has removed the ban on India and consented to export Uranium to India.
(b) Trace the progress of India’s efforts for a joint counter-terrorism strategy with China. What are the likely implications of the recent Xinjiang violence on these efforts ?
Important Points for Answer:
- Joint counter-terrorism strategy
- India – China efforts
- Xinjiang violence
(b) The two Asian giants clearly know that the ‘terrorism anywhere is a threat everywhere’. That was the main theme of the joint counter terrorism mechanism signed by India and China in 2002. After 9/11 attacks, India has signed many bilateral mechanism with several countries.
A significant addition was made to this mechanism in 2005, the joint counter terrorism was extended to include “Separatism and extremism”, so as to suit Chinese problem of Uighur extremism and Dalai Lama’s separatism movement despite the working of this bilateral mechanism since 2002.
The First India-China Joint anti-terror Military Exercise (“Fland-in-Hand, 2007”) held at Kunming in the Yunnan province of China from December 19 to 25, 2007, which involves 103 troops each from the two armies.
Beijing’s policy, like that of the US, shows a marked disinclination to hold Pakistan accountable for the Jihadi terrorism in the Indian Territory. The recent incidents in Xinjiang and its probable links with ISI has not led to any change in China’s policy except supporting Pakistan efforts in dismantling terrorism, and it is this aspect which has strategic implication for India.
(c) Bring out the importance of the ‘Small and Medium Enterprises Expo and Conference’ held in Dubai last year for Indian business.
Important Points for Answer:
- SME Expo and Conference
(c) The SMEs Expo, will offer a great platform to small units to promote their brands, products and services, as well as explore business opportunities in the Middle-East and North African markets.
Besides giving a major impetus to networking activities with other visiting countries such as Pakistan, Mauritius, Nigeria and Vietnam, the event will offer Indian SMEs the opportunity to acquaint themselves with the latest technologies in their industries and from alliances with international clients. Indian SMEs from sectors such as plastic, petrochemicals, garments and textiles, and art and handicrafts, among others, are likely to gain from participation at the expo.
Indian SMEs attending the event could also seek to scout for partnership possibilities with Dubai and Gulf Cooperation Council (GCC) based countries such as Kuwait, Saudi Arabia, the UAE, Oman, Bahrain and Qatar.
Significantly according to the Dubai Customs Department, with bilateral trade between India and Dubai shooting above US $ 23.14 billion, India was Dubai’s biggest direct trade partner during the initial seven months of 2010.
There is also a vast opportunity for India to boost India’s banking presence in the UAE to enhance two-way trade and investment.
(d) What are the salient features of the political and economic relationship between India and South Africa ?
Important Points for Answer:
- India – South Africa
- Political Relations
- Economic Relations
(d) India’s relationship with South Africa starts since Mahatma Gandhi started his Satyagraha Movement in South Africa more than a century ago.
Following a commencement of talks between the then South African Government and the African National Congress (ANC), India’s relations with South Africa were restored after four decades with the opening of a cultural centre in Johannesburg in May 1993. Thus against the background of India’s consistent support to the anti-apartheid struggle, close and friendly relations – strategic, political, economic and cultural between the two countries have subsequently been consolidated.
Various bilateral agreements have also been concluded between India and South Africa in diverse areas ranging from economic and commercial cooperation, defence, culture, health, human settlements, public administration, science and technology and education.
On the other hand, the economic relationship also reached the new age, the bilateral trade has trebled from US $ 2.5 billion in 2003-04 to US $ 7.5 billion in 2008-09. The trade target to be achieved has been US $ 15 billiion by 2014.
An important initiative under negotiation is the India-SACU preferential Trade Agreement. Commercial interaction has been aided by an Indo-South Africa CEO’s Forum. An India Business Forum (IBF) was launched in March 2007 in South Africa.
Q. 3 Answer either of the following in about 250 words : 20
(a) “The causes and implications of the Jasmine Revolution and its spread are as much economic in nature as they are political.” Critically evaluate.
Important Points for Answer:
- Jasmine Revolution
Answer: The Arab uprising started when an unemployed youth “Mohammed po Agasi” committed suicide by self-immolation due to police torture for bribe to run a road side fruit shop in Tunisia. This incident ignited a fire in the minds of the people. They were already looking for an opportunity to raise their voice against the Autocratic Government.
Arab spring is the name given to the pro-democracy movement in the western and northern African nations.
Economic causes : Youth unemployment, high level of poverty, impact of global financial crisis, widening gulf between rich and poor and likewise.
Political causes : Autocratic regime and tribocracy, increasing intervention of major powers to acquire the strategic resources, the civil unrests, high level of corruption and likewise.
Hindrances : Lack of effective central leadership and the problem between the Shia and Sunni Peoples, tribal conflicts, active role of revolutionary groups with the help of NATO and US Forces and weapon supplies.
(b) In the context of the ‘Euro-zone’ debt crisis, examine the proposed ‘six-pack’ solution. Do you think that this has a better chance of success than the earlier Stability and Growth Pact ?
Important Points for Answer:
- Euro – zone debt crisis
- Six pack solution
- Stability and Growth Pact
Answer: The European Parliament has voted for the adoption of six legislative proposals on EU economic governance, popularly known as the “Six Pack”, effectively giving unprecedented power to European commission on member state’s fiscal and budgetary affairs.
(i) It hands the European Commission greater powers to sanction countries that do not keep down their debts and deficits.
(ii) The European Commission can also impose fines of 0.2 percent of GDP which can only be overturned by a majority vote of member states in the council.
(iii) The EU Parliament has been given the right to call finance ministers from countries that have been warned.
(iv) It also provides for European Semester so as to annually assess national budgets.
Generally, the six pack is about more than a sanctions. It is about prevention. It also emphasise the “prevention is better than cure” principle. It is also about more than fiscal discipline, it is about keeping European economics, competitive to create jobs and archive sustainable growth.
The stability and growth pact (SGP) is a rule based frame work for the co-ordination of national fiscal policies in the economic and monetary union (EMU).
Also, it was established to safeguard sound public finances, an important requirement for EMU to function properly.
Q. 4 Answer any four of the following in about 150 words each: 12 × 4 = 48
(a) “As regard the increasing rates of melting of Arctic Sea ice, the interests of the Arctic Council Nations may not coincide with those of the wider world.” Explain.
Important Points for Answer:
- Melting of arctic Sea ice
- Arctic Council Nations
• Interest of the World
Answer: Global warming has changed the Arctic and the region is now facing a very different future that many nations and companies want to be a part of it. The Arctic countries are set to make a big short term earnings, at the cost of climate change.
The disappearing of Arctic Sea ice has been known for decades. The underlying cause is believed by all but handful of climatologists to be a global warming brought about by greenhouse gas emissions. Yet the rate at which the ice melting differs in every models.
It is predicted that there will be no ice melting in the Arctics at the end of this century, if the level of CO2 and Methane continues to rise at the present level. Some scientists predicts that it may happen in 2050 itself.
Interest of Arctic Council Nations :
The Arctic Nations are showing very much interest to tap the untapped reserves of oils and gas. It is believed that 25% of the world’s untapped reserves of oil and gas are in the North of the Polar Circle.
The Eight member Arctic Council nations are looking for the way to tap the resources rather than take stern actions to curb the menace of the climate change.
The fast growing commercial interests, brings challenges to the Nordic nations and they are competing themselves for the economical benefits without considering its consequences.
(b) Is there still a role for the concept of balance of power in contemporary international politics ? Discuss.
Important Points for Answer:
- Balance of Power
- Role and Concept
Answer:The concept of Balance of Power (BoP) exists when there is a parity or stability between competing forces. The concept describes a state of affairs in the international system and explains the behaviour of states in that system.
As a concept in international law, it is considered as “just equilibrium” between the members of the family of nations. It expresses the doctrine intended to prevent any one nation from becoming sufficiently strong so as to enable it to enforce its will upon the rest.
Even now, the nations are forming regional and economic co-operations, councils and Security Councils among themselves to make a balance of power in the various region of the world, such as NATO, EU, SAARC, SCO, ASEAN, AU, etc.
US led NATO groups wanted to make a strong hold in all regions of the world, but to counter this NATO, Russia plans to make more strong SCO and post-several union nations groups in the Asian region.
So, still all the countries in the world are some way or other trying to make a power strong hold to survive in the globalised era.
(c) “Strategic interests seem to be replacing commercial interests for the host country with regard to Cam Ranh Bay.” Amplify.
Important Points for Answer:
• Cam Ranh Bay
- Interests – Strategic vs. Commercial
Answer:In the South-East Asian region, the rowing deterent attitude of China, is considered as a threat to all south-east Asian nations, including Vietnam. The Vietnam’s military modernisation programme has also escalated tension with Beijing over disputes islands in the South-China Sea. Once operational, the submarines will provide Vietnam with a potent deterrent aimed at China’s increasingly powerful navy.
The Cam Ranh Bay is one of the finest deep water anchorages in the south-east Asia and provides access to the commercially and strategically vital sea lanes which pass through the South-China Sea.
The base established by the trench in the late 19th century, occupied by Japan in the Second World War, become major base of operations for the US military in 1978, then lased to Russia for 25 years, and again come back to Vietnam in 2002.
Now, Vietnam has announced the lease proposal to the foreign navies. But it is viewed as a part of larger strategy by Vietnam to strengthen defence ties with US and facilitate the US military presence in South-east Asia as a counter to China’s rising power in this region. The regular presence of the US warships at Cam Ranh Bay might make China think twice about using coercive military diplomacy against Vietnam.
(d) To what extent has the withdrawal of al-Shabab from Mogadishu given peace a real chance in Somalia? Assess.
Important Points for Answer:
- Conditions of Somalia
- Al-Shabab Withdrawal
• Chances of peace
(d) Somalia is one of the worst famine affected country in the world. The living condition of the people is very-very low. There is no proper food, sanitation and basic amenities.
Due to a long civil war, the international agencies could not do any humanitarian aid to the affected people properly. The al-Shabab guerilla is one of the militant outfits which imposed the blockade in the region.
This had been one of the causes of worsening famine in the country as al-Shabab didn’t allow international body to work there.
Now, with the withdrawal of al-Shabab, the humanitarian crisis can be properly handled and the chances of lasting peace will increase in the region.
(e) On a Formula-one (F-l) racing car track, information to drivers is generally signalled through the standardised use of flags of different colours. Describe the meanings associated with any six of the flags listed below :
(i) White flag
(ii) Black flag
(iii) Yellow flag
(iv) Blue flag
(v) Black and white flag divided diagonally
(vi) Chequered flag
(vii) Yellow and red striped flag
(i) White flag : a slow – moving vehicle such as a retiring car, an ambulance or tow truck ahead on the track, and instructs drivers to slow down.
(ii) Black flag : orders a particular driver to return to his pit within the next lap and report immediately to the Clerk of the Course, usually because they have been disqualified from the race.
(iii) Yellow flag : A single yellow indicates danger ahead, such as debris from a crash. Drivers must slow down as they pass; no overtaking is permitted, unless it is unavoidable such as a driver retiring in the section, or a driver is lapped.
(iv) Blue flag : During a race, a light blue flag waved on the track warns the driver that they are about to be lapped by a faster car and must let it pass. A driver may incur penalties if they ignore three successive blue flags.
(v) Black and white flag divided diagonally : informs a driver that their behaviour has been deemed unsporting and if they do not begin acting in a sporting manner immediately they will be disqualified. A sign with the car number accompanies the flag.
(vi) Chequered flag : signals the end of the race, practice session, or qualifying session. During the race it is shown first to the winner and then to the rest of the field as they finish; otherwise it is shown at a predetermined time.
( vii) Yellow and red striped flag : warns drivers that the track surface ahead is slippery, or there is debris present.
Q. 5 Comment on any THIRTEEN of the following in about 50 words each : 5 × 13 = 65
(a) International Year of Chemistry
(b) The scourge of e-waste
(c) ‘Designer’ poultry eggs
(d) INSPIRE programme of the department of Science and Technology
(e) The ‘Kessler syndrome’ with reference to space debris
(f) Omega-3 fatty acids in our food
(g) Difference between ‘spin-drying’ and ‘tumble-drying’ technology with reference to drying of washed clothes.
(h) The diminishing population of vultures
(i) ‘Arsenic-bug’ and the significance of its discovery
(j) F-22 ‘Raptor’ aircraft
(k) ‘Concentrated’ solar energy and ‘photovoltaic’ solar energy
(l) Analog, hybrid and IP systems in CCTV technology
(m) Various applications for Kevlar
(n) Differences between Compact Disc (CD), Digital Versatile Disc (DVD) and Blu- ray Disc
Answer: (a)International Year of Chemistry : The International Year of Chemistry 2011 (IYC, 2011) is a world-wide celebration of the achievements of Chemistry and its contribution to the well-being of the whole human kind.
The goals of IYC-2011 are to increase the public appreciation of Chemistry, to encourage interest in Chemistry among young people, and to generate positive approach for the creative future of Chemistry.
(b)The scourge of e-waste : Due to technology development, the world is facing another major problem in the name of e-waste. It leads to various environment and health problems. The amount of various chemical compounds, and other toxic materials present in the electronic compounds can cause cancer and other skin diseases. Also they pollute the environment in various ways.
(c)‘Designer’ poultry eggs : Designer eggs are those eggs produced by flocks of chickens that have been fed special diets to modify the nutrition of the eggs they produce.
The composition of the feed leads to the desired composition of the eggs, adding the nutritive profile in the eggs through enrichment in the diet and not by use of any drugs or hormones.
(d)INSPIRE programme of the department of Science and Technology : INSPIRE means Innovation in Science Pursuit for Inspired Research. It is an innovative programme to commemorate to the youth of the country the excitements of creative pursuit of science at an early age and thus build the required critical human resources pool for strengthening and expanding the science and technology system and research and development in the field of science.
(e)The ‘Kessler syndrome’ with reference to space debris : It is a scenario in which the density of objects in low earth orbit (LEO) is high enough that collisions between objects could cause a cascade, each collision generating debris which increases the likelihood of further collisions.
It was first proposed by the NASA Scientist Donald J. Kessler in the year 1978. Hence, it is called Kessler Syndrome.
(f) Omega-3fatty acids in our food : Omega – 3 fatty acids are very essential and helpful in alleviating cardiovascular disease. And also the diseases like diabetes, inflammatory ailments and autoimmune disorders.
The source of Omega – 3 are fish oil, marine foods, cod liver oil, and also found in bread, milk and dairy products, fruit juices, salads, and mayonnaise, etc.
(g)Difference between ‘spin-drying’ and ‘tumble-drying’ technology with reference to drying of washed clothes : The two technology has been used in drying the clothes. The spin drying spins the drums faster than a typical washer could in order to extract additional water from the load whereas tumbler dryer uses the heated rotating drum for clothes dryer.
Spin dryer on the other hand may remove more water in two minutes than a heated tumbler dryer can in twenty minutes, thus saving significant amount of time and energy.
(h)The diminishing population of vultures : This is mainly due to use of diclofinac in animals has led to the sharp decline in the vulture population in the Indian subcontinent.
Vultures eat the carcasses of livestock that have been administered veterinary diclofinac, and are poisoned by the accumulated chemical which causes renal failure, a known side effect of diclofinac.
The vulture population has declined 95% in 2003 and 99.9% in 2008.
(i)‘Arsenic-bug’ and the significance of its discovery : NASA-supported researchers have discovered the first known micro-organism on earth able to thrive and reproduce using the toxic chemical arsenic. The microorganism which lives in California’s Mono Lake, substitutes arsenic for phosphorus in the backbone of its DNA and other cellular components.
(j)F-22 ‘Raptor’ aircraft : It is a single seat, twin engine fifth generation maneuverable fighter aircraft that uses stealth technology. The F-22 Raptor is made up of 39% titanium, 24% composite, 16% aluminium and 1% tormoplastic by weight. Titanium is used for its high strength-to-weight ratio in critical stress areas, including some of the bulkheads, and also for the head-resistant qualities in the hot sections of the aircraft. Carbon fibre composites have been used for the fuselage frame, the doors, intermediate spars on the wings, and for the honeycomb sandwich construction skin panels. A BAE systems head-updisplay (HUD) shows target status, weapon status, weapon envelopes and shoot cues. A video camera records data on the HVD for post mission analysis.
(k)‘Concentrated’ solar energy and ‘photovoltaic’ solar energy : Concentrated solar power (CSP) systems use mirrors or lenses to concentrate a large area of sunlight, or solar thermal energy, onto a small area. Electrical power is produced when the concentrated light is converted to heat, which drives a heat engine, usually a (steam turbine) connected to an electrical power generator.
Photovoltaics (PV) is a method of generating electrical power by converting solar radiation into direct current electricity using semi-conductors that exhibit the photovoltaic effect. The solar panels composed of a number of solar cells contain photovoltaic materials, such as monocrystalline silicon, polycrystalline silicon, amorphous silicon, cadmium felluride and copper indium and gallium setanide/ sulfide.
(l) Analog, hybrid and IP systems in CCTV technology :The closed circuit television (CCTV) system has different technologies in which, analog cameras cost less than IP Network cameras. Widespread compatibility. Analog CCTV systems capture video in its purest electric form.
IP CCTV can send video, audio and data from the city to another up to 30 kilometers away. A Hybrid CCTV system can record and display IP cameras and analog cameras into the same security recorder.
(m) Various applications for Kevlar : Kevlar is a brand fiber which is used for various purposes:
(i) It is used as heat resistant during rocket and satellite launches.
(ii) It is used to make protection vests, military helmets and resistant gloves, bullet proof jackets, etc.
(iii) It is used to vehicle armor and helps to protect the law enforcement personnel who face multiple threats from fire arms, knives and puncture-producing weapons.
(iv) It is also used to improve the performance and durability of power train and body components used in passenger vehicles, trucks and race cars.
(v) The fibers and filaments also help to strengthen countless miles of castes containing glass fibers that transmit voice, data and video signals.
(n) Differences between Compact Disc (CD), Digital Versatile Disc (DVD) and Blu-ray Disc :
Compact Disc (CD) is a small portable round medium made up of molded polymer for electronically recording storing and has storage capacity of 700 MB of data uses semiconductor laser;
Digital Versatile Disc (DVD) is an optical disc technology with 4.7 GB storage capacity on a single-sided, one-layered disc. DVD can be single-or-double sided, and can have a layer on each side. Two-layered DVD will hold up to 17 GB of video, audio or other information, uses 650 nm wavelength laser diode light;
Blue-Ray Disc (BD) is designed to supersede the DVD format. The plastic disc is 120 mm in diameter and 1.2 mm thick, same as DVD. It contain 25 GB per layer uses blue laser.
Q. 6 Comment on the following in about 50 words each: 5 × 5 = 25
(a) Functions of the World Customs Organisation (WCO)
(b) Success of international intervention in Cote d’Ivoire (Ivory Coast)
(c) Strategies adopted by Colombia to eliminate its drug cartels
(d)World Food Programme (WFP) of the United Nations (UN)
(e) Sculpture of the broken chair in front of the UN building at Geneva
Answer: (a)Functions of the World Customs Organisation (WCO) : The WCO is situated in Brussels, it is considered as a sister organisation of WTO. Its primary function is to enhance the efficiency and effectiveness of member customs administrations, thereby assisting them to contribute successfully to national development goals. Especially in the areas of revenue collection, national security, trade facilitation with other nation community protection and collection of trade statistics which enables the member states in all fronts to improve their trade with international community.
(b) Success of international intervention in Cote d’Ivoire (Ivory Coast) : The Conflict in Ivory Coast had entered a decisive phase as Laurent Ghagbo, who has hung on to power despite losing in the general election, fights an end game against the rightful President. Unlike what happened in Libya, Iraq and Afghanistan, the intervention in Coast de’Ivorie worked within a week, former President Laurent Ghagbo, accepted the defeat in an election and plunged his country into a steadily escalating spiral of violence and repression, was in custody. With in a week, the majority of his forces had surrendered or rallied to the new President’s side. Moreover, it did not lead to civil war, which often occurs in the African countries.
(c) Strategies adopted by Colombia to eliminate its drug cartels : As of 2011 Colombia remains the world’s largest cocaine producer. Since the establishment of the war on drugs, the US and European countries have provided financial, logistical, tactical and military aid to Colombia to curb the drug cartels.
The most notable of this step is “Plan Colombia”, a program to combat drug cartels and leftist organisations, and deployed police and military forces to retake the territory controlled by the cartels. A second part of the strategy is to bring down the top bosses. Colombia managed with the help of the USA and the UNODC to rid itself of the drug cartels. As a signatory to the 1988 Vienna Convention against drug trafficking, Colombia has been taking stern actions to curb the menace of drugs.
(d) World Food Programme (WFP) of the United Nations (UN): WFP is the United Nations frontline agency in the fight against global hunger. Since its launch, WFP staff around the world have worked timelessly towards reducing hunger. In2010, WFP aims to provide food assistance to more than 90 million people in 72 countries.
WFP of the UN is the world’s largest humanitarian agency fighting hunger worldwide. It was formed in 1961 with the vision of alleviating hunger from the globe in cooperation with FAO and IFAD.
(e) Sculpture of the broken chair in front of the UN building at Geneva : In order to show the opposition and to remain to the world leaders, the Broken chair is a monumental sculpture in wood by the Swiss artist Daniel Berset, constructed by the carpenter Louis Geneve. It symbolises the opposition to land mines and cluster bombs, and acts as a remainder by politicians and others visiting Geneva. It’s one of the peaceful way to show our angry and disappointment with the world leaders, and to remain their failures to take actions against the injustice.
Q. 7 Why have each of the following been in the news recently? (Each answer in a sentence or two only)2 × 10 = 20
(c) Gliese 581 g
(d) MABEL robot
(e) ‘Operation Shady Rat’
(g) ‘Billion Acts of Green’
(h) L’Aquila earthquake
(i) OPERA detector at Gran Sasso
(j) Saturn’s Titan
Answer: (a) Tiangong-1: It is the first space laboratory module of China.
(b) K-computer : It is the fastest super computer produced by Fujitsu Japan. It can operate over 2 petaflops.
(c) Gliese 581 g: It is an earth-sized planet orbiting a nearby star. Liquid water could exist on the surface of the planet.
(d) MABEL robot: It is the fastest bipedal robot with knees running at a speed of 6.8 miles per hour.
(e) ‘Operation Shady Rat’: It is a cyber attack which have hit at least 72 organisations including defence, business, UNO, IOC, etc.
(f) SAGA-220 : It is ISRO made super-computer.
(g) ‘Billion Acts of Green’: An environment campaign, with a goal to reach a billion act of environmental service.
(h) L’Aquila earthquake: The deadliest earthquake that hit Italy recently.
(i) OPERA detector at Gran Sasso: It observed neutrinos travelling faster than the speed of light.
(j) Saturn’s Titan: This is the largest moon of Saturn and only known to have devise atmosphere.
Q. 8 Why have the following been in the news recently ? (Each answer in a sentence or two only) 2 × 5 = 10
(a) ‘News International’ newspaper
(b) Mustafa Abdul – Jalil
(c) Abel Kirui
(d) Natalie Portman
(e) Nawaf Salam
Answer: (a) ‘News International’ newspaper : Employees of the newspaper were accused of engaging in phone hacking, police bribery and various illegal ways to collect the news. News International announced the closure of the newspaper on 7 July 2011. The final issue reads in big title : “THANK YOU AND GOODBYE”.
(b) Mustafa Abdul – Jalil : He is the Chairman of National Transitional Council of Libya’s care taker government.
(c) Abel Kirui : He won gold medal for Kenya in men’s marathon at world athletes championship.
(d) Natalie Portman : The actress has won the Academy, Golden Globe, and BAFTA Awards, for her role in Black Swan in 2011.
(e) Nawaf Salam : He is the Lebanon’s representative of the Security Council. He held the rotating presidency of the Security Council in September 2011.