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    1) Who among the following is contesting in the 2014 elections, for Lok sabha from Jadavpur and Kolkata South constituencies in West Bengal, who is also an independent candidate and has declared assests worth of Rs. 2,000 crore? Ans : (2) 1. Sheila Das 2. Shamali Das 3. Mallika Das 4. Aruna Das 5. Sheetal Das

    Explanation: Shamali Das is an independent candidate. She has declared assets worth Rs 2,000 crore — this makes her the richest candidate in the ninth and last phase of polling on 12th May.
    Das is the second-richest candidate after Nandan Nilekani of the Congress (Rs 7,700 crore) from Bangalore South. The third-richest candidate, Anil Kumar Sharma (Rs 849 crore), belongs to Janata Dal (United) and is contesting from Jehanbad, Bihar.

    2) The National Highways Authority of India (NHAI) has set a target to award road projects totaling 6,000 Kilometers worth of how much during this current financial year?Ans: (1)
    1. 55,000Cr 2. 67,000Cr 3. 77,000Cr 4. 56,000 Cr 5. 78,000 Cr

    Explanation: The National Highways Authority of India (NHAI) has set a target to award road projects totalling 6,000 km during the current financial year.
    According to NHAI's estimates, the combined worth of these projects is around Rs 55,000 crore. Of these, projects worth Rs 6,500 crore have all the necessary clearances and, hence, ready to be awarded.
    NHAI has already acquired the land needed for the projects to be awarded soon and got the necessary clearances so that the new government can fast-track awarding of the projects.
    Of late, NHAI has been struggling to complete existing projects and award new projects in the wake of a slowdown in the domestic economy as well as a lack of participation by private-sector road developers. A large number of road developers had also threatened to walk out of crucial road projects, which were awarded during 2010-2012.
    Under the EPC mode, the government funds the road projects and a private developer undertakes the project. On the other hand, under the PPP mode, the private developer develops the road project and collects his return through toll or annuity.
    Over the past few years, road developers have been staying away from projects. The last time they bid aggressively was during 2010-2012 when the government awarded a record 147 road projects worth Rs 1.47 lakh crore. The high expectation while bidding was attributed to India's high economic growth, which has slowed considerably over the past few years.
    As of now, road projects worth Rs 83,000 crore are pending completion. Since 2009, the United Progressive Alliance (UPA) government has recorded the completion of only three projects, adding a meagre 315 km to the existing highways' network.
    Last year, the government awarded less than 1,500 km of road projects under the EPC mode after it found no takers for PPP projects.
    The National Transport Development Policy Committee, headed by former Reserve Bank of India deputy governor Rakesh Mohan, had earlier pegged private investment needs in the road sector at Rs 6.65-lakh crore over the next 20 years. This translates into Rs 33,250 crore a year, which is less than the total value of projects awarded under the PPP route in 2010 (Rs 51,354 crore).
     NHAI has been struggling to complete existing projects and award new ones in the wake of economic slowdown and lack of participation by private developers
     A large number of road developers had also threatened to walk out of crucial road projects, which were awarded during 2010-2012
     As of now, road projects worth Rs 83,000 crore are pending completion
    The National Highways Authority of India (NHAI) is an autonomous agency of the Government of India, responsible for management of a network of over 70,000 km of National Highways in India. It is a nodal agency of the Ministry of Road Transport and Highways. The current chairman of the NHAI is Rajinder Pal Singh.

    3) Which company group have emerged as the richest persons in the UK? Ans:(4)
    1. Mittal Group 2. Lord Swaraj Paul 3. Mahindra group 4. Hinduja Brothers 5. Alisher Usmanov

    Explanation: The Hinduja brothers have emerged the richest persons in the UK, which boasts of 102 billionaires, including Lord Swraj Paul and four others of Indian-origin. London-based Srichand and Gopichand Hinduja, have a fortune of £11.9 billion
    The Hinduja brothers, who run a multinational conglomerate with interests spanning the automotive, real estate and oil sectors, moved up from third position last year to top the charts this year.
    Mittal also edged one position upwards to the third rank with £10.25 billion even as Russian magnate Alisher Usmanov, who topped the list till last year, fell to the second place. Leading NRI industrialist and Caparo chief Lord Swraj Paul is ranked Britain’s 48th richest, with an estimated worth of around £2 billion.
    The Hinduja Group is a global conglomerate company headquartered inLondon, United Kingdom. The company was founded in 1914 by Parmanand Deepchand Hinduja, initially operating in Mumbai, India, and setting up its first international operation in Iran in 1919. The headquarters of the group moved to Iran where it remained until 1979, when the Islamic Revolution forced it to move to Europe. Srichand Hinduja and his brother Gopichand moved to London in 1979 to develop their father's export business. In June 2012, Hinduja Group won its first overseas order of 50 units of vestibule buses from Bangladesh Road Transport Corporation.

    4) Foreign Direct Investment inflows from Mauritius have almost halved during April-February period of last fiscal to how much billion? Ans: (1)
    1. $ 4.48 billion 2. $ 5.67 billion 3. $ 3.45 billion 4. $ 2.45 billion 5. $ 4.40 billion

    Explanation: Foreign Direct Investment inflows from Mauritius have almost halved during April-February period of last fiscal to $4.48 billion, according to the data of the Department of Industrial Policy and Promotion (DIPP). India had received $8.97 billion during April-February 2012-13.
    What are FDI’s?
    An investment made by a company or entity based in one country, into a company or entity based in another country. Foreign direct investments differ substantially from indirect investments such as portfolio flows, wherein overseas institutions invest in equities listed on a nation's stock exchange. Entities making direct investments typically have a significant degree of influence and control over the company into which the investment is made. Open economies with skilled workforces and good growth prospects tend to attract larger amounts of foreign direct investment than closed, highly regulated economies.
    MAURITIUS ROUTE: The Mauritius route is a channel used by foreign investors to invest in India, Mauritius is the main provider of Foreign Direct Investment to India and also the preferred jurisdiction for Indian outward investments into Africa. In fact 39.6% of Foreign Direct Investment to India came from Mauritius during 2001-2011 India has comprehensive DTAA with 83 countries. This means that there are agreed rates of tax and jurisdiction on specified types of income arising in a country to a tax resident of another country. Under the Income Tax Act 1961 of India, there are two provisions, Section 90 and Section 91, which provide specific relief to taxpayers to save them from double taxation. Section 90 is for taxpayers who have paid the tax to a country with which India has signed DTAA, while Section 91 provides relief to tax payers who have paid tax to a country with which India has not signed a DTAA. Thus, India gives relief to both kind of taxpayers.
    According to the tax treaty between India and Mauritius, capital gains can only be taxed in Mauritius, the same treaty exist with 16 other countries. But with only 3% of capital gains tax, the quality of its service and regulatory framework, its pool of professionals, geographical proximity, cultural affinities and long historical ties with India, Mauritius is the most attractive conduit for investments into India.
    The DTAC has helped Mauritius in the development of its Financial Services sector and India has on the other hand benefitted in terms of foreign direct investments, which for the last ten years stand at a cumulative figure of around USD 55Billion, and also in terms of job creation.

    5) Ukraine’s rebellious eastern regions voted on which day, in a referendum on self-rule which Kiev dismissed as “illegal farce” while rebel leaders hailed as a step towards independence.? Ans:(1)
    1. 11th May 2. 12th May 3. 13th May 4. 14th May 5. 15th May

    Explanation: Ukraine’s rebellious eastern regions voted on 11th May in a referendum on self-rule which Kiev dismissed as “illegal farce” while rebel leaders hailed as a step towards independence. Organisers cited record turnout in the voting 78 per cent of voters in Donetsk region and almost 70 per cent in Luhansk region cast ballots.
    Ukraine’s Foreign Ministry denounced the referendum as “criminal farce” and said it will not affect the country’s territorial integrity and form of government.
    The United States State Department dismissed the referendum as “illegal” and said Washington was “disappointed” that Moscow had failed to use its influence “to forestall” the vote.
    Ukrainian military tried to prevent voting in some rural areas in the Donetsk and Luhansk regions, shutting down polling stations and confiscating ballot papers.
    However, as Kiev’s military crackdown on anti-government protesters in the east grew increasingly bloody, rebel leaders saw little room for compromise with the central government.
    “The referendum for us is about creating a new legal entity,” said Pavel Gubarev, “People’s Governor” of Donetsk.

    6) The CSIR-Institute of Himalayan Bio-resource Technology (CSIR-IHBT), Palampur has signed a MoU with its which industry partner—, to formalize technology transfer for production of unique enzyme which may be used in developing anti-ageing cream? Ans:(1)
    1. Phyto Biotech, Kolkata 2. Ranbaxy, Mumbai 3. Reddy Labs, Telangana 4. Abott, USA 5. Zuventus, Madhya Pradesh

    Explanation: Besides cosmetic, the enzyme — Super Oxide Dismutase (SOD) — may also be used in food and pharmaceutical industries for end applications like extending shelf life of fruits and vegetables.
    This unique enzyme will also be useful during cryosurgery and preservation of organelles (specialized sub-unit within cell that has a specific function). The cryosurgery is an application of extreme cold to destroy diseased tissue. The enzyme was discovered by CSIR-IHBT during a survey at an altitude of over 10,000 feet in the Western Himalayan region from Potentilaastrosangunia plant growing under snow cover.

    7) Who won the Madrid Title? Ans:(1)
    1. Sharapova 2. Serena Williams 3. Caro Black 4. Monica Lewinsky 5. None of the above

    Explanation: Maria Sharapova won Madrid final defeating Simona Halep.

    8) The Congress-led UPA has recommended which name as vice chief of the army for the next army chief's post? Ans:(1)
    1. Lt General Dalbir Singh Suhag 2. Lt General Jaswanth Singh 3. Lt General Vikram Singh 4. Lt General Ranbir Singh 5. Lt General Ashutosh Singh

    Explanation: Army chief Gen Bikram Singh will retire on July 31. Traditionally, the government announces the name of services chiefs about two-three months before they retire. On 12th May, the Election Commission dispatched a communication to the defence ministry giving 'no-objection' to the appointment. Sources said the EC cited its March 27 order that makes it clear that appointments, promotions, tenders and procurements in defence forces are not covered under the Model Code of Conduct.
    Lt Gen Suhag, commissioned in the Gorkha Rifles in 1974, has a long experience in counter-insurgency operations in Jammu and Kashmir and the North East. He also took part in the IPKF operation in Sri Lanka. In January, Lt Gen Suhag took over as the vice chief of the army, considered a precursor to his likely elevation to the top post.

    9) The overall voting percentage in all the nine phases of polling taken together how much percent, which is the highest in the history of Lok Sabha elections? Ans:(2)
    1. 65.78 % 2. 66.38% 3. 77.89% 4. 75.66% 5. 79.99%

    Explanation: Lok Sabha elections 2014 witnessed the highest-ever turnout with more than 66 percent of an estimated 814 million voters exercising their franchise. The overall voting percentage in all the nine phases of polling taken together is 66.38 percent, the highest in the history of Lok Sabha elections. The previous best turnout of 64.01 percent was in 1984 in the poll held While 58.19 percent polling was recorded in 2009, the Lok Sabha elections in 2004 saw 56.98 percent voting. In real terms, according to the Election Commission data, 55.13 crore voters exercised their voting rights this time as aganst 41.73 crore voters last time in 2009.
    Women voters also came out in large numbers this time and in fact outnumbered their male counterparts in 16 states including Arunachal, Chandigarh, Odisha, Punjab, Bihar and Uttarakhand.
    Uttar Pradesh also recorded the highest ever voting after the last phase voting with 58.63 per cent polling. While Bihar witnessed 56.5 per cent voting, Maharashtra saw 54.7 per cent and West Bengal 81.77 per cent polling. According to the EC, Nagaland recorded 88.57 per cent voting followed by 84.1 per cent in Manipur and 82.8 per cent in Puducherry.
    Besides increased voters' participation, the cost of conducting the polls has also seen a substantial jump with total expenditure going up to Rs 3426 crore as against Rs 1483 crore in 2009.
    The Election Commission of India is an autonomous, constitutionally established federal authority responsible for administering all the electoral processes in the Republic of India. Under the supervision of the commission, free and fair elections have been held in India at regular intervals as per the principles enshrined in the Constitution. The Election Commission has the power of superintendence, direction and control of all elections to the Parliament of India and the state legislatures and of elections to the office of the President of India and the Vice-President of India.
    The power of superintendence, direction and control of all elections to the Local Government/Municiple Corporation by the State Election Commission.
    The Chief Election Commissioner can be removed from his office by Parliament with two-thirds majority in Lok Sabha and Rajya Sabha on the grounds of proven misbehaviour or incapacity. Other Election Commissioners can be removed by the President on the recommendation of the Chief Election Commissioner. The Chief Election Commissioner and the two Election Commissioners draw salaries and allowances at par with those of the Judges of the Supreme Court of India as per the Chief Election Commissioner and other Election Commissioners (Conditions of Service) Rules, 1992. The current CEC is V.Sundaram Sampath.

    10) How many new Indian Varsities are going to join in QS Asia ranking lists?Ans:(3)
    10) How many new Indian Varsities are going to join in QS Asia ranking lists?

    Explanation: More Indian institutions, 17 this year against 11 last year, are on the Asian Universities Rankings 2014 list published by Quacquarelli Symonds (QS) Rankings. Banaras Hindu University, Punjab University, Manipal University, Amity University and Birla Institute of Technology and Science have joined the list. But the Indian Institute of Technology (IIT)-Bombay has slipped two notches from last year to 41 this year. IIT-Delhi retains 38th rank.
    While IIT-Kanpur is down one spot at 52, IIT-Madras has slipped four. IIT-Kharagpur is down two notches at 60 and IIT-Roorkee down four at 70. IIT-Guwahati has seen the biggest drop at 95 against 89 last year.
    A panel set up by the human resource development ministry on IITs' global rankings has filed its report. A member said some key suggestions were improving data collection, compilation and disbursement.
    Among universities, the University of Delhi takes the lead at 81, having slipped a place since last year.

    11) Central Bank of India reported how much per cent drop in net profit for the fourth quarter of FY’2014 at Rs 162 crore due to higher provision for bad loans? Ans:(1)
    1. 4% 2. 6% 3. 3% 4. 8% 5. 9%

    Explanation: Central Bank of India reported a 4 per cent drop in net profit for the fourth quarter of FY’2014 at Rs 162 crore due to higher provision for bad loans. The profit in the corresponding quarter a year ago was at Rs 169 crore. Sequentially, the profit increased over 150 per cent from Rs 62 crore in the third quarter of FY-14.
    The bank’s gross non-performing assets (NPAs), or bad loans, as a percentage of total advances, rose to 6.27 per cent from 4.8 per cent in the January-March quarter last year. Net NPAs also worsened to 3.75 per cent from 2.90 per cent.
    Bank’s net interest income (interest earned less interest expended) increased 12 per cent to Rs 1,715 crore as against Rs 1,534 crore in Q4FY14. On the other hand, other income declined 7 per cent to Rs 593 crore (from Rs 636 crore).
    During FY-2014, total advances grew 4 per cent to Rs 1.83 lakh crore (Rs 1.76 lakh crore as on March end 2013) driven by retail loan growth at 29 per cent. Total deposits of the bank increased 6 per cent to Rs 2.40 lakh crore (from Rs 2.26 lakh crore in 2013).
    NPA is a classification used by financial institutions that refer to loans that are in jeopardy of default. Once the borrower has failed to make interest or principle payments for 90 days the loan is considered to be a non-performing asset. Non-performing assets are problematic for financial institutions since they depend on interest payments for income. Troublesome pressure from the economy can lead to a sharp increase in non-performing loans and often results in massive write-downs.
    With a view to moving towards international best practices and to ensure greater transparency, it had been decided to adopt the ‘90 days’ overdue’ norm for identification of NPA, from the year ending March 31, 2004. Accordingly, with effect from March 31, 2004, a non-performing asset (NPA) is a loan or an advance where
    The Reserve Bank of India (RBI) has offered some leeway to banks for early detection and resolution of bad loans. Under the new regime kicking off from April 1, 2014 lenders can finance 50 per cent of the outstanding loan value, RBI said in Framework for Revitalising Distressed Assets in the Economy, released on Thursday. Earlier, RBI had proposed to allow takeover of existing loans by new financiers at 60 per cent or more of the loan value. The central bank also diluted rules for accelerated provisioning it had proposed for non-performing accounts. Now lenders will make 25 per cent provision for unsecured loans that remain unpaid for six months. Initially, RBI had proposed 30 per cent provisions.
    Plus, for loans that have remained unpaid for two years, banks have to set aside 40 per cent, instead of 50 per cent.
    Key drivers under new regime
     Early formation of Joint Lender's Forum for action plan
     Carrot for lenders to agree collectively and quickly to a plan
     Penalty of higher provisioning for delayed actions
     Independent evaluation for large recast deals
     Take-out and refinancing will not be treated as restructuring
     Losses from selling of NPAs can be spread over two years
     Buying and selling of NPAs between asset recast firms.

    12) The EU Foreign Ministers agreed to impose sanctions on how many Crimean companies and 13 more individuals from Russia and Ukraine? Ans:(1)
    1. 2 2. 3 3. 4 4. 3 5. 5

    Explanation: Following vote for “sovereignty”, Ukraine’s Russian-speaking region has declared its independence from Kiev and asked for joining Russia. Almost 90 per cent of voters in Donetsk region and more than 96 per cent in the neighbouring Luhansk region supported “state sovereignty” in a referendum held on Sunday, organisers announced on Monday. The turnout was 75 per cent in both regions.
    The EU Foreign Ministers agreed to impose sanctions on two Crimean companies and 13 more individuals from Russia and Ukraine. It is for the first time that Europe has taken aim at corporations rather than individuals.

    13) The Supreme Court collegium headed by Chief Justice of India R.M. Lodha has recommended the appointment of how many members as apex court judges.? Ans:(3)
    1. 2 2. 3 3. 4 4. 5 5. 6

    Explanation: The Supreme Court collegium headed by Chief Justice of India R.M. Lodha has recommended the appointment of Adarsh Goel, Arun Mishra, Gopal Subramanium and Rohinton Nariman as apex court judges. The recommendations are likely to be processed by the new government. This is the first time that two persons from the Bar, the former Solicitors-General Rohinton Nariman and Gopal Subramanium, are being elevated at one stroke.

    14) Public sector banks have a majority stake of more than how much percent that is held by government? Ans:(1)
    1. 50% 2. 60% 3. 70% 4. 80% 5. 90%

    Explanation: The incoming Government will have to undertake radical reform measures, including privatisation, to improve governance in public sector banks as their financial position is fragile, a Reserve Bank of India panel has suggested.
    The Committee to Review Governance of Boards of Banks in India, headed by PJ Nayak, former Chairman and CEO, Axis Bank, has recommended that the Government distance itself from several bank governance functions.
    For this purpose, the Committee suggested…………
     The Bank Nationalisation Acts of 1970 and 1980, together with the SBI Act and the SBI (Subsidiary Banks) Act, be repealed and all banks be incorporated under the Companies Act.
     It s also said it is desirable to further amend legislation to remove all constraints on voting rights in order to align it with Company Law.
     A Bank Investment Company (BIC) should be constituted to which the government transfer its holdings in banks and the Government’s powers in relation to the governance of banks also be transferred.
     The character of BIC’s business would make it resemble a passive sovereign wealth fund.
     The Government and the BIC should sign a shareholder agreement which assures BIC of its autonomy and sets its objective in terms of financial returns from the banks it controls.
     Given the lower productivity, steep erosion in asset quality and demonstrated uncompetitiveness of PSBs over varying time periods, the committee felt that recapitalisation of these banks will impose significant fiscal costs.
     The committee said that If the governance of these banks continues as at present, this will impede fiscal consolidation, affect fiscal stability and eventually impinge on the Government’s solvency
     Consequently, the Government has two options. The first is to privatise these banks and allow their future solvency to be subject to market competition, including through mergers.
     The second is to design a radically new governance structure that would better ensure their ability to compete successfully, so that repeated claims for capital support from the government, unconnected with market returns, are avoided.
     Pointing to the several external constraints imposed on PSBs which are inapplicable to their private sector counterparts, the committee suggested that the Government and the RBI rapidly eliminate or significantly reduce these constraints.
     Otheriwse, managements of these banks will continue to face erosion in competitiveness, it said.
     The external constraints include dual regulation by the finance ministry and the RBI, the manner of appointment of directors, the short average tenures of Chairmen and Executive Directors, compensation constraints, external vigilance enforcement and applicability of the Right to Information Act.
     The RBI should also designate a specific category of investors in banks as Authorised Bank Investors (ABIs), defined to include all funds with diversified investors which are discretionally managed by fund managers.
     ABIs would include pension funds, provident funds, long-only mutual funds, long-short hedge funds, exchange-traded funds and private equity funds (including sovereign wealth funds). They would exclude all proprietary funds (including those which are hedge funds or set up by corporates), non-banking finance companies and insurance companies.
     A single ABI should be permitted a maximum 20 per cent investment stake in a bank without regulatory approval, provided it possesses no right to appoint a board director.
     For promoter investors, other than ABIs, it is proposed that the continual stake ceiling be raised to 25 per cent (from 15 per cent).
     An ABI which is given board representation, and thereby exercises a measure of influence, should be permitted a lower 15 per cent maximum investment limit without regulatory approval.
     For banks identified by the RBI as distressed, the committee suggested that private equity funds, including sovereign wealth funds, be permitted to take a controlling stake of up to 40 per cent.
    Public Sector Banks (PSBs) are banks where a majority stake (i.e. more than 50%) is held by a government. The shares of these banks are listed on stock exchanges. There are a total of 21 PSBs in India.
    The Central Government entered the banking business with the nationalization of the Imperial Bank Of India in 1955. A 60% stake was taken by the Reserve Bank of India and the new bank was named as the State Bank of India. The seven other state banks became the subsidiaries of the new bank when nationalised on 19 July 1960. The next major nationalisation of banks took place in 1969 when the government of India, under prime minister Indira Gandhi, nationalised an additional 14 major banks. The total deposits in the banks nationalised in 1969 amounted to 50 crores. This move increased the presence of nationalised banks in India, with 84% of the total branches coming under government control.
    The next round of nationalisation took place in April 1980. The government nationalised six banks. The total deposits of these banks amounted to around 200 crores. This move led to a further increase in the number of branches in the market, increasing to 91% of the total branch network of the country. The objectives behind nationalisation where:
     To break the ownership and control of banks by a few business families,
     To prevent the concentration of wealth and economic power,
     To mobilize savings from masses from all parts of the country,
     To cater to the needs of the priority sectors.....
    The share of the banking sector held by the public banks continued to grow through the 1980s, and by 1991 the public sector banks accounted for 90% of the banking sector. A year later, in March, 1992, the combined total of branches held by public sector banks was 60,646 across India, and deposits accounted for Rs. 1,10,000 crore. The majority of these banks were profitable, with only one out of the 27 public sector banks reporting a loss.
    Problem, with nationalised banks reporting a combined loss of Rs. 1160 crores. However, the early 2000s saw a reversal of this trend, such that in 2002-03 a profit of Rs. 7780 crores by the public sector banks: a trend that continued throughout the decade, with a Rs. 16856 crore profit in 2008-2009.

    15) The Cabinet Committee on Economic Affairs on 13th May approved a foreign direct investment proposal by private equity major KKR to acquire stakes in two pharmaceutical companies for Rs how much crore? Ans:(1)
    1. Rs. 1,434 cr 2. Rs. 1,567 Cr 3. Rs. 1, 678 Cr 4. Rs. 1, 789 Cr 5. Rs, 1, 643 Cr

    Explanation: Last November, KKR had announced a $200-million deal to acquire 37.98 per cent stake in Hyderabad-based Gland Pharma. The Cabinet cleared the proposal, under which Singapore-based KKR Floorline Investments, a part of KKR, will acquire about 38 per cent of Gland Pharma, including the entire stake held by Evolvence India Life Sciences Fund.
    Gland Pharma develops and manufactures generic injectables primarily for the US, as also for India and other semi-regulated markets. It also produces active pharmaceutical ingredients.
    The Cabinet also cleared another proposal under which KKR Floorline will acquire a 24.9 per cent stake in Gland Celsus Bio Chemicals, an investment holding company and one of the promoter entities of Gland Pharma, holding a 17.70 per cent stake in the company.

    16) The Centre has accepted which panel report that reviewed the depository receipts scheme framed in the year 1993? Ans:(2)
    1. Sahara 2. Sahoo 3. Bahara 4. Vihara 5. Jahoo

    Explanation: The key recommendations of the committee include allowing issuance of depository receipts against any underlying securities-equity or debt, by any issuer-listed or unlisted.
    The Sahoo Panel has recommended that depository receipts can be issued both for capital raising through new shares or against existing/secondary shares and the issuance may be either sponsored or unsponsored. It is also proposed that depository receipts will count as public shareholding if they have attached voting rights for holders.
    The Finance Ministry had in September 2013 set up a Committee under the chairmanship of M.S. Sahoo, Secretary, Institute of Company Secretaries of India, to undertake a comprehensive review of the foreign currency convertible bonds and depository receipt mechanism scheme.
    This committee has submitted its report and has recommended a Draft of the new Scheme which is to be notified at an appropriate stage after the enabling amendments have been completed, a finance ministry release issued on 13th May said.
    The draft scheme covers depository receipts only and FCCBs have been left out of its ambit (they would continue to be governed by the existing scheme until further notification), the release added.
    Depository receipts are receipts denominated in foreign currency created by a depository in the country of listing. There are two popular types of DRs — global depository receipts and American depository receipts. DRs are created against the underlying equity shares of the Indian company in a predetermined ratio.
    Depository receipts were the first option for Indian policymakers when they decided to throw open the economy to foreign investors in early nineties. Beginning of life with foreign investments started with DRs, it was pointed out.
    In the second phase, the nine-member panel headed by Sahoo, a former whole-time member of SEBI has been asked to review the framework on external commercial borrowings (ECBs) and foreign currency convertible bonds (FCCBs).
    What is depository receipt?
    A depositary receipt is a negotiable financial instrument issued by a bank to represent a foreign company's publicly traded securities. The depositary receipt trades on a local stock exchange. DR listed and traded in the US economy are known as American Depositary Receipts.
    Depositary receipts make it easier to buy shares in foreign companies because the shares of the company do not have to leave the home state.

    17) Israel's ex-prime minister Ehud Olmert was sentenced to how many years in jail on 13th May for taking bribes in a real estate deal? Ans:(3)
    1. 4 2. 5 3. 6 4. 7 5. 8

    Explanation: Israel's ex-prime minister Ehud Olmert was sentenced to six years in jail on 13th May for taking bribes in a real estate deal, a crime the judge said was akin to treason. The first criminal conviction of a former Israeli head of government all but ended speculation that Olmert - a centrist credited internationally with working towards a peace settlement with the Palestinians - might return to political life.

    18) The United Nations and Arab League special envoy to Syria, has announced that he is stepping down from his role. Who is He? Ans:(1)
    1. Lakhdar Brahmi 2. Lashkar Mambhi 3. Lakjhdar Vishnu 4. Lakhdar Brahmon 5. None of these

    Explanation: Mr Brahimi took over the role in 2012 from former UN chief Kofi Annan. Both have failed to find a peaceful solution to a three-year conflict that has left some 150,000 people dead. Lakhdar Brahimi is an Algerian United Nations diplomat. He is also a member of The Elders, a group of world leaders working for global peace. Brahimi is a member of the Commission on Legal Empowerment of the Poor, the first global initiative to focus specifically on the link between exclusion, poverty and law. He is also a member of the Global Leadership Foundation, an organization which works to promote good governance around the world. He would relinquish his post as UN Special Envoy to Syria on 31 May 2014.

    19) Pakistan confirmed on 14th March and it had agreed to play how many full series of cricket against India? Ans:(2)
    1. 3 2. 6 3. 4 4. 5 5. 7

    Explanation: Pakistan confirmed on 14th March it had agreed to play six full series of cricket against India with official backing, the first since the 2008 Mumbai terrorist attacks suspended play between the teams.
    Pakistan is expected to host four of the matches over the next eight years, after its cricket board said it had signed a memorandum of understanding with India on the issue, and pending a legal agreement.
    India suspended all bilateral series with Pakistan in the wake of the 2008 attacks, which New Delhi blamed on militants based across the border. The Pakistan team did tour India for a short limited over series in December 2012-January 2013 but a full series was not agreed by the Board of Control for Cricket in India (BCCI).
    The India–Pakistan cricket rivalry is one of the most intense sports rivalries in the world. An India-Pakistan cricket match has been estimated to attract up to three hundred million television viewers according to TV ratings firm Initiative. The 2011 World Cup Semifinal attracted around 1.5 billion TV viewers, the largest television event of the year.
    The arch-rival relations between the two nations, resulting from the extensive communal violence and conflict that marked thePartition of British India into India and Pakistan in 1947 and the subsequent Kashmir conflict, laid the foundations for the emergence of an intense sporting rivalry between the two nations who had erstwhile shared a common cricketing heritage. The first Test series took place in 1951-52, when Pakistan toured India. India toured Pakistan for the first time in 1954-55. Between 1962–77, no cricket was played between the two countries owing to two major wars in 1965 and 1971. The 1999 Kargil War and the 2008 Mumbai terrorist attacks have also interrupted cricketing ties between the two nations.
    The growth of large expatriate populations from India and Pakistan across the world led to neutral states like the United Arab Emirates and Canada hosting several bilateral and multi-lateral ODI series involving the two teams. Players in both teams routinely face intense pressure to win, and are threatened by extreme reactions in defeat. Extreme fan reactions to defeats in key matches such as in theICC Cricket World Cup have been recorded, with a limited degree of violence and public disturbances. At the same time, India-Pakistan cricket matches have also offered opportunities for cricket diplomacy as a means to improve relations between the two countries by allowing heads of state to exchange visits and cricket followers from either country to travel to the other to watch the matches
    The 2008 Mumbai attacks were twelve coordinated shooting and bombing terrorist attacks lasting four days across Mumbai, India's largest city, by members of Lashkar-e-Taiba. Ajmal Kasab, the only attacker who was captured alive, later confessed upon interrogation that the attacks were conducted with the support of Pakistan's ISI. The attacks, which drew widespread global condemnation, began on Wednesday, 26 November and lasted until Saturday, 29 November 2008, killing 164 people and wounding at least 308.
    Eight of the attacks occurred in South Mumbai: at Chhatrapati Shivaji Terminus, the Oberoi Trident, the Taj Mahal Palace & Tower, Leopold Cafe, Cama Hospital (a women and children's hospital), the Nariman House Jewish community centre, theMetro Cinema, and in a lane behind the Times of India building and St. Xavier's College. There was also an explosion atMazagaon, in Mumbai's port area, and in a taxi at Vile Parle. By the early morning of 28 November, all sites except for the Taj hotel had been secured by Mumbai Police and security forces. On 29 November, India's National Security Guards (NSG) conducted Operation Black Tornado to flush out the remaining attackers; it resulted in the deaths of the last remaining attackers at the Taj hotel and ending all fighting in the attacks.

    20) The European Union (EU) has lifted how many years of ban on the import of poultry meat from India? Ans:(1)
    1. 5 2. 3 3. 4 4. 6 5. 7

    Explanation: The European Union (EU) has lifted a five-year ban on the import of poultry meat from India, albeit with conditions. To export meat products, treated stomachs, bladders and intestines prepared from fresh meat of domestic poultry, including meat of farmed and wild game birds, exporters need an amended model health certificate, to be issued by the Export Inspection Council of India, the European Commission said.
    A transition period of four months (up to September 30) has been given for consignments with existing health certificates, provided this is signed before July 30. Faced with the spread of bird flu, the European Union had banned import of poultry meat from India five years ago. These fears have subsided, following India culling millions of chickens.
    Relaxation in the quality specifications, as sought by Indian authorities, will help companies resume exports. Currently, India exports various poultry products, including eggs and processed meat, worth Rs 500 crore a year. Of this, the EU accounts for 20-25 per cent.
    Rating agency ICRA estimates the poultry sector will report improved margins this financial year, despite volatile realisations, the wide supply-demand disparity across regions and high feed costs. In 2013, domestic poultry meat production (broiler-carcass weight) is estimated to have remained flat at 3.5 million tonnes, with per capita consumption of 2.8 kg a year, while table egg production is estimated to have increased from 66 billion in 2012 to 70 billion in 2013, with per capita consumption at 57 eggs a year. In value terms, the overall poultry market is estimated at about Rs 58,000 crore at the wholesale price level, indicating value growth of eight per cent compared to 2012.
    Icra said healthy growth in poultry output through the last decade made India one of the fastest growing markets in this segment, with strong potential due to gap against global per capita consumption and favourable socio economic factors.
    The European Union (EU) is an economic and political union of 28 member states that are primarily located in Europe.

    21) Which Home is the World’s Most outrageously Expensive according to Forbes? Ans:(2)
    1. Sachin tendulkar house 2. Mukesh Ambani’s house 3. Sunil Mittal’s house 4. Manmohan singh House 5. Sheila dixit’s House

    Explanation: Reliance Industries Chairman Mukesh Ambani’s skyscraper residence in Mumbai is the most expensive billionaire home in the world, according to a Forbes list, which also includes Indian-origin steel tycoon Lakshmi Mittal’s houses in London.
    Ambani’s 27-storey, 400,000 sq ft skyscraper home ‘Antilia’, named after a mythical island in the Atlantic, tops the Forbes list of the most expensive homes in the world.
    Forbes is an American business magazine owned by Forbes, Inc. Published biweekly, it features original articles on finance, industry, investing, and marketing topics. Forbes also reports on related subjects such as technology, communications, science, and law. Its headquarters are in New York City. Primary competitors in the national business magazine category are Fortune and Bloomberg Businessweek. The magazine is well known for its lists and rankings, including its lists of the richest Americans (the Forbes 400) and rankings of world's top companies (the Forbes Global 2000). The motto of Forbes magazine is "The Capitalist Tool". Its editor-in-chief is Steve Forbes and its CEO is Mike Perlis.

    22) The Ministry of Information & Broadcasting is participating at the ………………. Annual Cannes Film Festival on 15th May witnessed the release of India Film Guide at the Cannes Film Market, India Pavilion.? Ans:(2)
    1. 67th 2. 66th 3. 64th 4. 68th 5. 70th

    Explanation: The Ministry of Information & Broadcasting which is participating at the 67th Annual Cannes Film Festival on 15th May witnessed the release of India Film Guide at the Cannes Film Market, India Pavilion. The Secretary mentioned that the initiatives such as Co-production and Single Window Clearance would facilitate integration of the Indian film-makers with production houses worldwide.
    The importance of the audio-visual co-production agreements, the catalogue gave detailed information about similar co-production agreements signed with other countries so far such as UK, Canada, Germany, Brazil, Italy, Spain, Poland and New Zealand.
    The inaugural address was followed by a discussion on “The Making of Grace of Monaco” - the opening film of the 2014 Cannes Film Festival - with crew members from the film.
    Titled “The Journey to Cannes”, this session will feature Kanu Behl, the director of Titli; Avtar Panesar, Vice President, International Operations, Yash Raj Films; Guneet Monga, Founder, Sikhya Entertainment, and CEO, Anurag Kashyap Films Pvt. Ltd; and Ranvir Shorey, one of the stars of Titli.
    The Cannes International Film Festival, is an annual film festival held in Cannes, France, which previews new films of all genres, including documentaries, from around the world. Founded in 1946, it is one of the most prestigious and publicised film festivals in the world. The invitation-only festival is held annually (usually in May) at the Palais des Festivals et des Congrès.
    On July 1, 2014 co-founder and former boss of French pay-TV operator Canal Plus Pierre Lescure will take over as president of the festival.[5] France also hosts its national film awards, the César Awards, which are generally considered to be the French equivalent of the American Academy Awards.

    23) wholesale price index (WPI)-based inflation for April eased to a lower-than-expected how much per cent from 5.7 per cent last month? Ans:(1)
    1. 5.2% 2. 5.5% 3. 6.7% 4. 8.9% 5. 6.0%

    Explanation: Aided by a drop in prices of food and fuel items, wholesale price index (WPI)-based inflation for April eased to a lower-than-expected 5.2 per cent from 5.7 per cent last month. However, it was far higher than the 4.77 per cent recorded last April.
    The easing was in contrast to consumer price index-based inflation, which shot up to a three-month high of 5.59 per cent in April.
    Fuel inflation had declined to 8.93 per cent in April from 11.22 per cent in March, while food-article inflation declined to 8.64 per cent (9.9 per cent). The overall inflation in vegetables eased to 1.34 per cent (8.57 per cent). Core inflation, however, was quite sticky at 3.4 per cent (3.5 per cent).
    Meanwhile, the WPI for February now stands revised upwards to 5.03 per cent from the 4.68 per cent projected earlier, official data showed.
    What is Inflation?
    Inflation is defined as a sustained increase in the general level of prices for goods and services. It is measured as an annual percentage increase. As inflation rises, every dollar you own buys a smaller percentage of a good or service.
    The value of a dollar does not stay constant when there is inflation. The value of a dollar is observed in terms of purchasing power, which is the real, tangible goods that money can buy. When inflation goes up, there is a decline in the purchasing power of money. For example, if the inflation rate is 2% annually, then theoretically a $1 pack of gum will cost $1.02 in a year. After inflation, your dollar can't buy the same goods it could beforehand.
    There are several variations on inflation:
     Deflation is when the general level of prices is falling. This is the opposite of inflation.
     Hyperinflation is unusually rapid inflation. In extreme cases, this can lead to the breakdown of a nation's monetary system. One of the most notable examples of hyperinflation occurred in Germany in 1923, when prices rose 2,500% in one month!
     Stagflation is the combination of high unemployment and economic stagnation with inflation.

    24) The fiscal deficit for 2013-14 fiscal may finally turn out to be how much per cent of GDP? Ans:(1)
    1. 4.5% 2. 4.8% 3. 4.4% 4. 4.9% 5. 4.1%

    Explanation: The revenue deficit too would be lower at 3.2 per cent of GDP for 2013-14, as per the revised estimates to be tabled in Parliament at the time of presentation of the final Budget for 2014-15 in July. The fiscal deficit figure has come in lower from 4.6 per cent or in actual terms Rs 5.24 lakh crore. The revenue deficit given in revised estimates in the interim Budget was 3.3 per cent or Rs 3.70 lakh crore.
    According to official sources, the final data show that the development expenditure of the Government has been higher by Rs 16,000 crore in 2013-14. The fiscal deficit, which is the gap between expenditure and revenue, was 4.9 per cent of the GDP in 2012-13.
    Chidambaram had earlier drawn a red line under the fiscal deficit and planned to contain it at 4.8 per cent of the GDP in 2013-14. As per current indications, the fiscal deficit has come down mainly on account of expenditure compression and higher realisation from the 2G spectrum auction.
    According to the fiscal consolidation roadmap, the deficit is to be reduced further to 4.2 per cent in 2014-15 and 3.6 per cent in 2015-16. The interim Budget for 2014 has projected the fiscal deficit for 2014-15 fiscal at 4.1 per cent of GDP or Rs 5.29 lakh crore.
    What is Fiscal Deficit?
    Fiscal deficit is an economic phenomenon, where the Government's total expenditure surpasses the revenue generated . It is the difference between the government's total receipts (excluding borrowing) and total expenditure. Fiscal deficit gives the signal to the government about the total borrowing requirements from all sources.
    Components of fiscal deficit
    The primary component of fiscal deficit includes revenue deficit and capital expenditure. Revenue deficit: It is an economic phenomenon, where the net amount received fails to meet the predicted net amount to be received.
    Capital expenditure: It is the fund used by an establishment to produce physical assets like property, equipments or industrial buildings. Capital expenditure is made by the establishment to consistently maintain the operational activities.
    In India, the fiscal deficit is financed by obtaining funds from Reserve Bank of India, called deficit financing. The fiscal deficit is also financed by obtaining funds from the money market (primarily from banks).

    25) Plastic currency notes would be launched in the country in which year? Ans:(1)
    1. 2020 2. 2016 3. 2015 4. 2017 5. 2018

    Explanation: Plastic currency notes would be launched in the country in 2015 after field trials, Reserve Bank Governor Raghuram Rajan said on 14th May. What is Plastic money?
    Plastic money is a term that is used predominantly in reference to the hard plastic cards we use everyday in place of actual bank notes. They can come in many different forms such as cash cards, credit cards, debit cards, pre-paid cash cards and store cards.
    Cash Cards - A card that will allow you to withdraw money directly from your bank via an Authorised Teller Machine (ATM) but it will not allow the holder to purchase anything directly with it.
    Credit Cards - Again this card will permit the card holder to withdraw cash from an ATM, and a credit card will allow the user to purchase goods and services directly, but unlike a Cash Card the money is basically a high interest loan to the card holder, although the card holder can avoid any interest charges by paying the balance off in full each month.
    Debit Cards - This type of card will directly debit money from your bank account, and can directly be used to purchase goods and services. While there is no official credit facility with debit cards per se, as it is linked to the bank account the limit is the limit of what is in the account, for instance if an overdraft facility is available then the limit will be the extent of the overdraft.
    Pre-paid Cash Cards - As the name suggests the user will add credit to the card themselves, and will not exceed that amount. These are usually re-useable in that they can be 'topped up' however some cards, usually marketed as Gift Cards are not re-useable and once the credit has been spent they are disposed of.
    Store Cards - These are similar in concept to the Credit Card model, in that the idea is to purchase something in store and be billed for it at the end of the month. These cards can be charged at a very high interest rate and can are limited in the places they can be used, sometimes as far as only the store brand that issued it.