Current Affairs Current Affairs - 21 June 2016 - Vikalp Education

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Current Affairs - 21 June 2016

General Affairs 

Food Regulator Bans Use Of Potassium Bromate As Food Additive
  • NEW DELHI:  The government today banned use of potassium bromate as a food additive following a CSE study that found its presence in bread causing cancer.
    The Food Safety Standards Authority of India (FSSAI), however, has referred potassium iodate -- also claimed to be carcinogenic used as a food additive -- to a scientific panel.
    "FSSAI has banned potassium bromate. A notification has been issued in this regard. As far as potassium iodate is concerned, it has been referred to a scientific panel," FSSAI CEO Pawan Kumar Agarwal told PTI.
    Last month, the regulator had recommended to the Health Ministry removal of potassium bromate from the list of permissible food additives after a study by the Centre for Science and Environment (CSE).
    The CSE study had found that 84 per cent of 38 commonly available brands of pre-packaged breads, including pav and buns, tested positive for potassium bromate and potassium iodate. These two food additives are banned in many countries and listed as "hazardous" for public health.

    According to CSE, potassium bromate typically increases dough strength, leads to higher rising and uniform finish to baked products while potassium iodate is a flour treatment agent.

    CSE had also urged FSSAI to ban the use of potassium bromate and potassium iodate with immediate effect and prevent their routine exposure to Indian population.
    After the CSE study, a bread manufacturers' body had said they will stop using controversial potassium bromate and potassium iodate as additives.
    The All India Bread Manufacturers Association, which represents over 90 organised bread manufacturers such as Harvest Gold and Britannia, had asked FSSAI to verify the findings of the CSE report that claimed most of the breads sold in the national capital contained cancer-causing chemicals.

Separatist Yasin Malik Arrested, Shifted To Srinagar Central Jail
  • SRINAGAR:  Jammu and Kashmir Liberation Front (JKLF) chairman Mohammad Yasin Malik was today arrested by police when he was on his way to meet hardline Hurriyat Conference leader Syed Ali Shah Geelani in Srinagar.

    He was arrested from Batmaloo bus stand when he was en route to Hyderpora residence of Mr Geelani to meet him, a JKLF spokesman said.

    He said Yasin Malik was initially taken to Kothibagh police station and later shifted to Central Jail Srinagar.

    Condemning the arrest, JKLF spokesman said he was arrested more than six times by police since May 25.

    He has been making efforts to bring various separatist organisations on one platform. He had met Mr Geelani about a month back, after which leaders of two factions of Hurriyat Conference -- hardline faction led by Mr Geelani and moderate faction led by Mirwaiz Umar Farooq -- along with Yasin Malik held a trilateral meeting.

    During that meeting, they had decided to undertake joint protests against building of settlements for Kashmiri Pandits and sainik colonies besides the new industrial policy of the state government.

Aam Aadmi Party Dubs Maheish Girri's Hunger Strike As A 'Drama'
  • NEW DELHI:  Aam Aadmi Party (AAP) today dubbed the hunger strike of BJP lawmaker Maheish Girri outside Chief Minister Arvind Kejriwal's residence as a "drama" and alleged that Delhi Police is "shielding" him in the murder case of NDMC official MM Khan.

    "Girri should refrain from doing nautanki (drama) by staging a hunger strike outside Arvind Kejriwal's residence. Unless he is arrested and questioned by the police there could not be any talk of his innocence," Delhi AAP convenor Dilip Pandey told a press conference.

    He asserted that both Mr Girri and New Delhi Municipal Council (NDMC) Vice Chairman Karan Singh Tanwar were given clean chit and were outside the ambit of investigation in the murder case and accused the police of "shielding" them.

    "Modiji's police is shielding them. If the police were under Delhi government, both Girri and Tanwar would be in jail," Mr Pandey said.

    He alleged that Mr Girri "accompanied" Ramesh Kakkar (accused in Mr Khan's murder case) to Lieutenant Governor's office in connection with the latter's hotel lease which was to be decided by Mr Khan.

    Showing the copy of a "covering letter" purportedly written by Mr Girri, Mr Pandey alleged that it was attached to Mr Kakkar's letter to Lieutenant Governor regarding the lease issue.

    "The truth will come out with the arrest of Girri as he was seen standing with a dishonest and now killer (man) by writing a letter in his favour," he said.

    BJP is setting a new "trend" of adopting this "tactic" of staging dharna at Mr Kejriwal's residence by those who have committed a wrong, Mr Pandey claimed.

    "Even if you have committed murder you can sit at dharna outside Kejriwal's residence to divert and dilute the matter."

    BJP is setting a new benchmark of staging dharna over "non-issues" while AAP-led government in Delhi is setting a benchmark of pro-people governance through its innovative work, he said.

    On a question of the BJP lawmaker's demand for a debate with Mr Kejriwal over his allegations in the murder case, Mr Pandey said, "He (Girri) should first ask Modi for communication with the people of the country and Kejriwal who had been asking for a debate over public issues."

    He said the debate will take place in a court but before that he will be arrested and a chargesheet filed against him.

    The East Delhi lawmaker sat on a hunger strike outside Mr Kejriwal's residence on Flagstaff Road yesterday demanding that the chief minister prove his allegations regarding his involvement in the murder.

    Mr Khan, an estate officer of NDMC, was shot dead in Jamia Nagar on May 16, a day before he was scheduled to pass the final order on the lease terms of a hotel located on a property leased out by the civic body.

Rajan's Exit Notice Before 'Brexit' Poses Stress Test For India: Foreign Media
  • As if Britain's possible exit from the European Union wasn't enough to worry about, India investors now must cope with central bank Governor Raghuram Rajan's impending departure.

    The rupee, Asia's worst performing currency this year, slumped Monday to its lowest level in four weeks following Rajan's weekend announcement that he plans to return to academia when his term ends in September. Volatility in the currency also climbed after surging the most since August last week, while Indian sovereign bonds declined.

    "Clearly investors will not like this and you will see this in markets," said Sean Yokota, the head of Asia strategy at Skandinaviska Enskilda Banken in Singapore. "Monday will be a tough day for India amidst 'Brexit.' "

    Since taking office in 2013, the former International Monetary Fund chief economist helped strengthen the rupee, cut its swings by more than half and propelled the nation's foreign-exchange reserves to an all-time high. Those moves, along with the implementation of an inflation-targeting regime, built India's credibility with investors and helped it overtake a slowing China as the world's fastest-growing major economy.

    The rupee weakened 0.4 percent to 67.3550 a dollar as of 10:31 a.m. in Mumbai, headed for its biggest drop in a week. That took its 2016 decline to 1.8 percent, the worst performance in Asia. The currency is just 2.2 percent shy of its record low of 68.845 seen in August 2013. It dropped to 67.66 earlier, the lowest since May 24.

    The currency pared losses as the central bank was seen selling dollars, two Mumbai-based traders said, asking not to be identified because they aren't authorized to speak on the matter publicly.

    Rajan on Saturday expressed confidence that the policies he helped implement would protect Asia's third-biggest economy from the sort of sudden capital flight that occurred in the months before he took office, when the Federal Reserve first signaled it would taper its bond purchases. In 2013, Morgan Stanley included the rupee among the "Fragile Five" currencies along with South Africa's rand, Indonesia's rupiah, Turkey's lira and Brazil's real.

    "We have worked with the government over the last three years to create a platform of macroeconomic and institutional stability," Rajan said while announcing his plans to leave office. "I am sure the work we have done will enable us to ride out imminent sources of market volatility like the threat of Brexit."

    Rajan plans to remain at the central bank until his term ends on Sept. 4. Finance Minister Arun Jaitley said the government would announce his successor shortly. RBI spokeswoman Alpana Killawala didn't immediately respond to a phone call seeking comment.

    Investors will likely remove capital from India and stay on the sidelines in the short term, according to Nikhil Johri, chief investment officer at Trivantage Capital Management India Pvt. in Mumbai. The S&P BSE Sensex has been one of the best performers in Asia over the past month. It rose 0.3 percent on Monday even as the yield on India's benchmark 10-year sovereign bonds climbed two basis points to 7.52 percent.

    "Dr. Rajan's decision will make international investors quite nervous about Indian markets," said Johri, a former classmate of the RBI governor in the 1980s. "They will now wait for the announcement of his successor and will evaluate the next steps thereafter."

    Uncertainty about the U.K.'s June 23 referendum has cast a pall over the global outlook, spurring risk aversion across emerging markets. While the pound rallied Monday after polls showed a swing toward the 'Remain' campaign, a gauge of the rupee's one-month implied volatility jumped 43 basis points to 7.11 percent.

    Global funds reduced their holdings of local-currency government and corporate debt this year by $1.5 billion (102.5 billion rupees). That compares with inflows of 505 billion rupees in 2015 and 1.7 trillion rupees in 2014.

    The campaign to keep the U.K. in the European Union led in the first opinion poll fully conducted since Thursday's slaying of lawmaker Jo Cox. Polls had shown mounting support for withdrawal from the EU in the week before her death.

    Rajan lured inflows of about $34 billion through discounted foreign-currency swaps. He also sought to build a war chest to help defend the rupee from global shocks, with about a fourth of India's foreign-exchange stockpile being added during his term.

    In December, Rajan set banks a March 2017 deadline to clean up their balance sheets in a bid to reduce bad loans that are at a 15-year high.

    Even with Rajan leaving, India's world-beating economic growth and improvements to its current-account and fiscal deficits have made it an attractive investment destination. Solid carry returns will also keep investors interested in India, according to Aberdeen Asset Management Plc and Pacific Investment Management Co., which oversees about $1.5 trillion in assets globally.

    "Rajan took a whole host of measures that hugely improved the RBI's credibility, there's no doubt at all," said Himanshu Malik, a strategist at HSBC Holdings Plc in Hong Kong. "There will be a negative knee-jerk reaction but given India's higher growth, positive reforms potential and high carry, it will be an attractive.

Amarinder Singh Hits Back At Arun Jaitley Over 'Foreign Accounts' Charge
  • CHANDIGARH:  A day after Union Finance Minister Arun Jaitley attacked him over his family's alleged foreign accounts, Punjab Congress chief Amarinder Singh today hit back at him, accusing him of trying to "avenge his humiliating defeat" in the 2014 Lok Sabha polls.

    He also asked the senior BJP leader to "furnish the address with the proof of ownership" of properties abroad and said he would "produce all the evidence" as how he was "trying to abuse his position" to target him.

    The Congress' deputy leader in the Lok Sabha, who defeated Mr Jaitley in the 2014 Lok Sabha elections from Amritsar, lashed out at him for allegedly behaving like the "spokesman of the Enforcement Directorate and the Income Tax department and not as their boss".

    "Time, they say, is a great healer, but unfortunately nothing seems to work or heal for Jaitley", he said, while reacting to Mr Jaitley's charges made during a speech in Bathinda yesterday.

    "The way Jaitley spat venom at me, has only vindicated and validated my stand that he is trying to avenge his humiliating defeat by unleashing these departments (the ED and IT) at me and my family," Mr Singh said.

    Addressing a 'Vikas Parv' rally in Bathinda, Mr Jaitley yesterday said, "I recall when there was Congress government in Punjab in 2002 led by Captain Amarinder Singh, he used to cook up stories about the Badal family, claiming that they have land in Australia, petrol pump in America, besides levelling other charges, but he failed to prove the allegations. We have found accounts of Captain Sahib's family."

    The PCC president said, it was good that the Finance Minister "betrayed" his intentions at Bathinda yesterday, as it will further strengthen his case and establish that the ED was "directly acting" under the minister's instructions.

    "Unfortunately Jaitley seems to have chosen and resolved not to let his wounds and the bruised ego to heal over his humiliating defeat in Amritsar, even after the passage of two long years", the PCC president said, adding, "anyway, if he has chosen to use his agencies to avenge that defeat, I am ready for it and will fight it to the finish and expose his ulterior motives and intentions".

    "It is not only unprecedented but also unbecoming of a minister to make a suo motu statement related to investigations being carried out by the department under him, which only justifies our stand that he has a personal grudge and score to settle with me," Mr Singh alleged, claiming "the courts will also take note of it, as it is difficult to expect the ED and IT to do fair investigations when their boss has already pronounced us the guilty".

    On Mr Jaitley's claims that he has located Mr Singh's "illegal properties" abroad, the former Punjab chief minister asked him to furnish the address with the proof of ownership and not rely on the "documents which someone stole" from a Swiss Bank years ago and sold to the French government, that in turn gave to the government of India.

    He also alleged, "Jaitley was behaving as if he was the sole and ultimate arbitrator in the matter, than just an aggrieved (over his Amritsar defeat) complainant."

    "I have firm faith in law of the land and I will produce all the evidence as how Jaitley is trying to abuse his position to target me", he said, while alleging, "Immediately after taking over as the Finance Minister, he had asked a senior official of the Income Tax department to 'find something' to fix me, which the officer refused saying there was nothing against me that can stand the legal scrutiny".

    Taking a dig at Mr Jaitley, Mr Singh said, "Much against the public perception, you have turned out to be a mediocre lawyer with a parochial mindset that can stoop to any depths to target his political opponents".

Business Affairs 

Govt announces new FDI rules, opens defence, civil aviation and pharma
  • The government on Monday radically liberalized the FDI policy with the objective of boosting employment in the country. The decision was taken at a high-level meeting chaired by Prime Minister Narendra Modi.
    Following these changes, the country will become the most open economy in the world for FDI. Most of the sectors would be under automatic approval route, barring a small negative list, a government release said. According to the official statement, this is the second major reform after the last radical changes announced in November 2015.
    In a move to further liberalize FDI regime, the government has decided to increase sectoral caps and brought more activities under automatic route to encourage foreign investment.
    According to the government release, these amendments seek to further simplify the regulations governing FDI in the country and make India an attractive destination for foreign investors.
    As per new rules, 100 per cent FDI has been allowed under government approval route for trading, including through e-commerce, in respect of food products manufactured or produced in India.
    In Defence sector, the government has done away with the condition of access to 'state-of-art' technology. Also, FDI limit for defence sector has also been made applicable to Manufacturing of Small Arms and Ammunitions covered under Arms Act 1959.
    In pharma sector, the government has decided to permit up to 74% FDI under automatic route in brownfield pharmaceuticals and government approval route beyond 74% will continue.

    In civil aviation sector, the government has decided to permit 100% FDI under automatic route in Brownfield Airport projects. 

    Dalal Street moves on! Four factors that overshadowed Raghuram Rajan's exit fears
    • In contrast to what market mavens expected, the domestic market was quick to shrug off RBI governor Raghuram Rajan's exit announcement with S&P BSE Sensex rising as much as 259 points, while Nifty50 scaling towards 8,250-mark.
      The 30-share index did slip as much as 178 points in a knee-jerk reaction to Rexit, but quickly rebounded to return in green terrain. The index settled the day 241 points higher, while 50-share index ended at 8,238 level.  
      Below are four factors that came to the rescue of market as it braced itself to deal with Rajan's no to the second term:
      1) Brexit turns Bremain!
      Market across the globe heaved a sigh of relief on Monday after a couple of polls released over the weekend showed the receding possibility of Britain leaving the European Union. Two polls suggested "In" regaining the lead and another showed the "Out" campaign's lead narrowing.
      2) Rain Gods smile, finally!
      After a delay of about 10 days, Monsoon has finally arrived in drought-hit Marathwada as well as a major part of Maharashtra, said Indian Meteorological department. There were concerns that going against the forecast, monsoon may turn out to fall below average this season as well. 
      3) Govt relaxes FDI norms
      Government on Monday relaxed Foreign Direct Investment (FDI) norms in a host of sectors including civil aviation, single-brand retail, defence and pharma by permitting more investments under automatic route. Reacting to the news, aviation, defence and pharma stocks logged solid gains in the trade today.
      4) Hopes of rate cut in August policy
      As Raghuram Rajan decided to pack his bags from RBI, supposedly on account of facing criticism on his hawkish stance on interest rates, speculation turned rife the next RBI governor may ease his/her stance on the same.   

      "New appointment could mean higher likelihood of further rate cuts," said global brokerage Credit Suisse in a research note.

      Indian professionals prefer flexible work hours over high pay
      • Nearly 50 per cent professionals in the country are ready to forgo a top position with high salary for flexible working arrangements, says a LinkedIn survey.
        "A flexible work schedule and ability to work remotely are increasingly important perks for Indian professionals (66 per cent). Moreover, 48 per cent Indian professionals say that they would forgo a top position and a high salary for more flexibility," the LinkedIn's 'Top Attractors' survey revealed. The survey also found that strong healthcare benefits (58 per cent) and emphasis on team building and professional development (52 per cent) are also cited as important incentives.
        "It is clear that Indian professionals are now looking for more than just a good salary package when deciding which companies they want to work for. Career growth opportunities, a company mission they believe in and brand values that they respect are key career considerations for talent.
        "It is, therefore, important that employers continue to build and invest in an employer brand that relates to, and resonates with both potential and existing employees," LinkedIn India Director Talent Solutions Irfan Abdulla said.
        The survey was conducted online among 6,266 workers globally, including 1,005 workers in India, between May 18 and May 23, 2016. The survey was conducted in India, the US, the UK, Brazil, Australia and France.
        The top three things Indian professionals look for in an employer of choice are - opportunity for (career) growth (79 per cent), a competitive salary (69 per cent) and a healthy business (62 per cent).
        Interestingly, growth opportunity matters more to women professionals (83 per cent) than men (79 per cent).
        A company's mission is also seen as an important positive factor for Indian professionals when deciding between companies to join.
        About 51 per cent of professionals in India, compared to the global average of 37.5 per cent, said they choose to join a company based on its mission and values.
        Interestingly, 52 per cent are willing to take a cut in their compensation if the company's mission resonates with their beliefs and values, it added.
        Although India is a growing hub for start-ups, 51 per cent Indian professionals are still attracted to big companies and only 8 per cent find start-ups attractive.
        Job stability (75 per cent), association with a recognised brand (74 per cent) and higher salary (73 per cent) are the key reasons for choosing to work for big companies.

        Job stability is more attractive for Indian women professionals (81 per cent) than men (74 per cent), it said.

      JLR to accelerate launch of petrol variants
      • Tata Motors-owned JLR will step up launching petrol variants of its various models as it seeks to adapt to the changing market environment in India, including due to ban on larger diesel vehicles in Delhi-NCR.
        Jaguar Land Rover (JLR) India, which today launched the two-litre petrol derivative of Land Rover Discovery Sport at a starting price of Rs 56.50 lakh (ex-showroom, Delhi), said the ban on select diesel vehicles has affected its business plans but it will adapt to meet the legal requirements. "The Discovery Sport petrol variant was not planned to be introduced in India as early as this. It was planned for later. So definitely, it does affect our plans," JLR India president Rohit Suri told PTI.
        He was replying to a query on whether the Supreme Court ban on diesel cars and SUVs of engine capacity of 2,000 cc and above in Delhi-NCR has affected the company's business plans.
        Suri, however, insisted that the company had started planning for petrol variants earlier as the Indian market was beginning to drift towards it from diesel due to narrowing price difference between the two fuels.
        He, however, replied in negative when asked whether the company would re-look at its investment in India, like the case has been Mercedes-Benz in deciding to put on hold its investments citing uncertainty over diesel engines.
        "If we are to remain relevant in any market, we have to adapt to the legislative requirements of the country," Suri said.
        When asked if JLR planned to accelerate the launch of petrol variants of its different models, including the popular Range Rover Evoque, he said: "We are adapting our portfolio, not just because of the ban (on big diesel cars and SUVs) but also due to the increasing preference for petrol vehicles. We will do our best to address the demand."
        The new variant of the Discovery Sport, he said, will help the company broaden the appeal of the premium SUV for customers who are more inclined towards driving a vehicle with a powerful petrol engine.
        The Land Rover SUV range in India includes the flagship Range Rover with a price tag starting at Rs 2.12 crore, Range Rover Sport Rs 1.18 crore, Discovery Sport at Rs 47.6 lakh and new Range Rover Evoque at Rs 48.60 lakh (all prices ex-showroom Delhi).
        On the company's sales expectations for current fiscal, Suri said: "In the first quarter, we sold over 1,000 units registering a growth of 45 per cent over the same period last year. This year, we are looking at double-digit growth."
        Stating that petrol variants will play a key role, he said: "We already had the Jaguar XJ in petrol, then we launched Jaguar XE in petrol too which saw strong response from the market in the first quarter. Now, we have Discovery Sport petrol too."
        Suri said the first quarter growth would have been much higher had there been no ban on big diesel cars and SUVs in the Delhi-NCR region.
        Asked about the company's plans to expand portfolio of locally assembled models, he said that at present, the company produces five models locally.

        JLR India will add three more showrooms this fiscal to take its total to 26 by the end of the year.

        PM Narendra Modi's five-nation tour is part of India's efforts to secure a full member seat in NSG. Now, all eyes are set for Seoul for the plenary meeting.
        • The Nuclear Suppliers Group's (NSG's) plenary in Seoul is scheduled to be held on June 23-24. Will India be able to get into this elite group? Things have got tough following firm opposition from a group of member countries led by China. On June 9-10, in a closed door meeting of diplomats in Austria's capital Vienna, representatives of China along with New Zealand, Ireland, Turkey, South Africa and Austria objected to India's membership of NSG.
          India's Prime Minister Narendra Modi, who finished his five-nation tour on June 9, secured assurances from Mexico and Switzerland, and also stitched a strategic alliance with the US to help persuade other members not to oppose India's membership. But the American influence is obviously not working on China.

          In fact, India itself is trying to garner support from China as well, since the game at NSG is not about building numbers but attaining consensus. A China vote against India would be akin to that of any of the other 47 members, and could crash India's plans. Just before Modi's tour, President Pranab Mukherjee went to Beijing to personally take up the issue with China's President Xi Jingping. Foreign Secretary S. Jaishankar, who accompanied Mukherjee, met Chinese foreign minister Wang Yi. But the Chinese don't want India to get into this elite group unless NSG also considers Pakistan's application.
          Both India and Pakistan have refused to sign the Nuclear Non-Proliferation Treaty (NPT) and Comprehensive Test Ban Treaty (CTBT). But while there is global suspicion that in the past, Pakistan clandestinely supplied nuclear equipment and technologies to North Korea and Iran, there is no such needle pointing to India. As such, Indian diplomats are attempting to build up the country's case. But from China's viewpoint, if India alone gets NSG membership, it would disturb the balance of power in South Asia. However, the other member countries are opposing both India and Pakistan's application on the grounds that no exception should be allowed, and both countries should be forced to sign NPT and CTBT before allowing them entry into the NSG.
          In the past two years, Modi travelled to nearly 17 member countries and met with their leadership. On his recent tour to Switzerland and Mexico, he assured the leadership there, especially Mexican President Enrique Peña Nieto, of India's commitment to disarmament and non-proliferation. Winning their support is being seen as a major success for Modi and India.
          Membership of NSG would allow India much smoother access to nuclear fuel, technology and equipment. Currently, 13 of India's 21 reactors are under safeguards of the International Atomic Energy Agency. Data from India's Central Electricity Agency show that the country's electricity requirement is poised to rise to 3,710,083 million units in 2032 from the current 1,354,874 million units. India has already committed to the world to cut emissions intensity (carbon dioxide emissions per unit of GDP) by 33-35 per cent by 2030 from 2005 levels. To attain this, India needs to achieve 40 per cent of its cumulative electric power of 350 GW installed capacity from non-fossil fuel-based energy resources. Along with renewable energy sources, India is looking at nuclear. By 2032, India sees its nuclear capacity at around 63,000 MW.
          In fact, on this tour to the US, India was able to stitch a $20-million US-India Clean Energy Finance initiative and a $40-million US-India Catalytic Solar Finance Program with equal financial contribution from the two countries. But renewable can form only 10-15 per cent of the entire electricity supply in the country. And if India wants to move its base load from coal-based power plants, the best option is nuclear.
          NSG membership will also provide more comfort to Japan to sign documents on the US's 123 agreement, paving the way for establishment of new nuclear plants in India. If China doesn't play ball, India would require a plan B. In 2008, India managed to get a special waiver at NSG, and is following the group's norms despite not being a member. In his letter to most member nations, US Secretary of State John Kerry is citing this example to garner more support.
          India has already stitched agreements with French major AREVA of France for the supply of 300 metric tonnes of uranium ore concentrate; Russian TVEL Corporation for 2,000 tonnes of natural uranium dioxide pellets; Kazakh NAC Kazatomprom for 5,000 tonnes uranium ore concentrate; Uzbek NMMC for 2,000 tonnes uranium ore concentrate; and Canadian CAMECO for 3,000 tonnes uranium ore concentrate. Supplies from these countries have started fuelling reactors in India, but if India has to multiply its installed capacity, full membership is a must. Toshiba-backed Westinghouse may set up six AP-1000 reactors in Andhra Pradesh, and more players are keeping tabs on India's NSG move to get in here. Other than the US, India is also working with France, Russia, and Japan to bring in reactors from the companies there. The biggest obstacle in these deals is India not being a member of NSG.
          Of course, full membership doesn't mean automatic installation of nuclear reactors. India's stringent liability laws increase the insurance cost of operators as well as suppliers, something the government is working on. Moreover, there has been internal resistance to building new nuclear plants, both in Kondakullam and Jaitapur. But that bridge can be crossed when we come to it. The immediate priority is to get NSG membership. All eyes are on the June 23 plenary in Seoul.

        General Awareness

        IBPS CRP-V Specialist Officer (Marketing) Exam Professional Knowledge Solved Paper

          • 1. A tangible product that the consumer feels comfortable purchasing without gathering additional information and then actually buys with minimum of effort is termed a(n)– 
            (a) Shopping good (b) Convenience good (c) Business product (d) Specially good (e) Unsought good (Ans : b)

            2. The process of dividing a market into distinct groups of buyers who have different needs, characteristics or behaviours and who might require separate products or marketing programs is called– 
            (a) Market segmentation (b) Market positioning (c) Market differentiation (d) Market targeting (e) Marketing mix (Ans : a)

            3. ………. is not a stage of product life cycle in marketing. 
            (a) Introduction (b) Maturity (c) Growth (d) Decline (e) Planning (Ans : e)

            4. ……….Which of the following is not a characteristic important in influencing an innovator's rate of adoption? 
            (a) Organisation type of the innovator (b) Compatibility (c) Divisibility (d) Communicability (e) Complexity (Ans : a)

            5. The financial contracts whose values are obtained from the values of underlying assets are– 
            (a) mortgage (b) commercial papers (c) stocks (d) derivatives (e) bonds (Ans : d)

            6. All of the following are considered to be broad market-follower strategies except– 
            (a) innovator (b) imitator (c) cloner (d) counterteller (e) adapter (Ans : a)

            7. A company has four choices when it comes to developing brands. Which one of the following is not one among them? 
            (a) New brands (b) Multi brands (c) Brand extension (d) Line extension (e) Brand sponsoring (Ans : e)

            8. ………. is a demand state where consumer may share a strong need that cannot be satisfied by an existing model. 
            (a) Declining demand (b) Irregular demand (c) Negative demand (d) Non-existent demand (e) Latent demand (Ans : e)

            9. ………. is the development, design and implementation of marketing programme, processes and activities that recognises the breadth and inter-dependencies of today's marketing environment. 
            (a) Niche marketing (b) Supply chain marketing (c) Holistic marketing (d) Relationship marketing (e) Demand-centred marketing (Ans : c)

            10. The ………. holds that marketing strategy should deliver value to customers in a way that maintain or improve both the consumer's and society's well-being. 
            (a) societal marketing concept (b) society centered marketing (c) customer centered marketing 
            (d) focused business model (e) production centered business (Ans : a)

            11. Major oil producers carryon oil exploration, oil drilling, oil refining, chemical manufacture and service-station operation. When an organisation does all of these separate tasks distribution channel they can be said to have achieved what is called– 
            (a) Parallel marketing (b) Horizontal integration (c) Vertical integration 
            (d) Concentric integration (e) Conglomerate marketing (Ans : c)

            12. Which of the following describes the tendency of people to interpret information in a way that will support what they already believe? 
            (a) Selective creativity (b) Selective distortion (c) Selective matching 
            (d) Selective attraction (e) Selective attribute (Ans : b)

            13. The ………. stage of a product is characterised as being one where there is period of rapid climb in sales and substantial profit improvement. 
            (a) introduction (b) decline (c) maturity (d) saturation (e) growth (Ans : e)

            14. The discomfort caused by post purchase conflict is called– 
            (a) Dissatisfaction (b) Cognitive dissonance (c) Post purchase behaviour (d) Buyer's remorse (e) Comparative tension (Ans : b)

            15. ………. is the study of how individuals, groups and organisations select, buy, use and dispose of goods, services, ideas or experiences to satisfy their needs and wants. 
            (a) Psychology (b) Product differentiation (c) Psychographic segmentation (d) Target marketing (e) Consumer behaviour (Ans : e)

            16. Mutual Funds are regulated in the country by– 
            (a) IRDAI (b) Association of Mutual Funds of India (AMFI) (c) NABARD 
            (d) Securities and Exchange Board of India (e) Reserve Bank of India (Ans : d)

            17. Situation in which a firm introduces new products to stimulate sales but the profit comes at the expense of other products sold by that firm is called– 
            (a) repositioning (b) push marketing (c) differentiated marketing (d) cannibalisation (e) cartelisation (Ans : d)

            18. Cultivating opinion leaders and getting them to spread information about a product or service to others in their communities is– 
            (a) Buzz marketing (b) Leader marketing (c) Niche marketing (d) Complex marketing (e) Selective marketing (Ans : e)

            19. Marketing management is defined as– 
            (a) monitoring the profitability of the' company's products and services (b) the art and science of choosing target markets and building profitable relationships with them 
            (c) managing the market process (d) developing marketing strategies to move the company forward 
            (e) selecting target markets to deploy marketers (Ans : c)

            20. The measure of the brand's ability to capture consumer performance and loyalty is termed as– 
            (a) Brand superiority (b) Brand equity (c) Brand version (d) Brand loyalty (e) Brand preference (Ans : d)

            21. Mission statements are at their best when they reflect a ………. to an almost impossible dream that provides direction for the next 10 to 30 years. 
            (a) market (b) strength (c) competency (d) vision (e) value (Ans : d)

            22. A strategy in which the initial price of the product is set low in relation to the target market's range of expected prices is termed as– 
            (a) Market skimming pricing (b) Old pricing (c) Discount market pricing 
            (d) Market penetration pricing (e) Special market pricing (Ans : d)

            23. A group of tradition bound consumers who are the tool to adapt an innovation is called as– 
            (a) Challengers (b) Leaders (c) Innovators (d) Laggards (e) Loyal agents (Ans : c)

            24. Low prices on products for which you have accurate price knowledge lets you know that the product has to be a bargain. This type of pricing is termed as– 
            (a) Reference pricing (b) Psychological pricing (c) Volume pricing (d) Promotional pricing (e) Signpost pricing (Ans : d)

            25. The want satisfying power of a product is called its– 
            (a) price (b) utility (c) bond (d) purpose (e) goal (Ans : b)

            26. Based on the rates firms charge in the target market in a specific industry, they are classified as following except in a– 
            (a) Market challenger (b) Market plott
            er (c) Market leader (d) Market nicher (e) Market follower (
            Ans : b)

            27. TQM approach in which all the people of the company are involved in constantly improving the performance of products, services and business processes. TQM stands for– 
            (a) Total Quality Management (b) Total Quality Marketing (c) Total Quantity Management 
            (d) Total Queries Management (e) Total Quality Manipulation (Ans : a)

            28. When backed by buying power, wants become 
            (a) self-esteem needs (b) demand (c) exchanges (d) physical needs (e) social needs (Ans : b)

            29. The philosophy of product centered marketing' concept is– 
            (a) right products for the customers (b) make and sell (c) make what the market wants 
            (d) sense and respond (e) selling on product benefits (Ans : e)

            30. The customer's evaluation of the difference between all the benefits and all the costs of a market offering relative to those of competing offers is called 
            (a) Customer perceived value (b) Customer expectation (c) Customer satisfaction 
            (d) Customer loyalty (e) Customer relationship (Ans : a)

            31. Button market is where– 
            (a) capital is disposed (b) gold is purchased and sold (c) shares are purchased 
            (d) production of silver takes place (e) investment are made (Ans : e)

            32. Especially in large firms, a sales force frequently is specialised in some organisational fashion. Which of the following is not one of such specialisations? 
            (a) Customer specialisation (b) Major accounts specialisatibn (c) Product specialisation 
            (d) Geographic specialisatlon (e) Economic order specialisation (Ans : e)

            33. Greater consumer control means that, in building customer relationships, companies can no longer rely on marketing by intrusion. The most practiced marketing is– 
            (a) conversion (b) delivery (c) retention (d) attraction (e) attention (Ans : c)

            34. According to Maslow's Hierarchy of Needs, sense of belonging is grouped in– 
            (a) Esteem needs (b) Social needs (c) Safety needs (d) Physiological needs (e) Self-actualisation needs (Ans : b)

            35. Michael Porter has identified five forces that determine the intrinsic long-run attractiveness of a market segment. Which of the following would not be among Porter's five forces? 
            (a) Threat of buyers' growing bargaining power (b) Threat of substitute products (c) Threat of technological partners 
            (d) Threat of intense segment rivalry (e) Threat of new entrants (Ans : c)

            36. The unplanned static or distortion during the communication process, which results in the receivers' getting a different message then the one that the sender sent is the– 
            (a) response (b) feedback (c) noise (d) decoding (e) encoding (Ans : c)

            37. If-a MNC like Nestle varied the elements of the marketing mix to suit the countries in which it sold its products, which type of strategy would it be following? 
            (a) Differentiated (b) Undifferentiated (c) Standardised (d) Adapted (e) Concentrated (Ans : d)

            38. Under which of the following company orientations toward the market place would we expect to get 'better economical' falacy? 
            (a) Marketing concept (b) Holistic marketing concept (c) Production concept 
            (d) Selling concept (e) Product concept (Ans : c)

            39. If a company focuses on only one or a few market segments instead of small share of a large market, the same is– 
            (a) Segment marketing (b) Conceptual marketing (c) Mass marketing (d) Micro marketing (e) Niche marketing (Ans : e)

            40. An estimate the total financial value of the brand is– 
            (a) Brand valuation (b) Brand tracking (c) Brand auditing (d) Brand partitioning (e) Brand equity (Ans : a)

            41. The total combined customer value of all the company's current and potential customers is called– 
            (a) Customer share (b) Customer delight (c) Customer loyalty (d) Customer orientation (e) Customer equity (Ans : e)

            42. We can say that a ………. has three characteristics. (1) It is a source of competitive advantage in that it makes a significant contribution to perceived customer benefits; (2) It has application in a wide variety of markets, and (3) It is difficult for competitors to imitate. 
            (a) strategic business unit (b) core competency (c) business strategy (d) winning strategy (e) core technology (Ans : b)

            43. Which demographic segmentation divides buyers into different groups based on social class, lifestyle or personality characteristics? 
            (a) Age and life cycle segmentation (b) Gender segmentation (c) Age segmentation 
            (d) Psycho graphic segmentation (e) Income segmentation (Ans : d)

            44. The internet version of word of mouth marketing is termed as– 
            (a) Viral marketing (b) Web marketing (c) Channel marketing (d) Network marketing (e) Virtual marketing (Ans : a)

            45. ………. is the development, interpretation and communication of decision oriented information to be used in all phases of marketing process. 
            (a) Marketing forecast (b) Market intelligence (c) Market planning 
            (d) Marketing research (e) Marketing information system (Ans : e)

            46. GATT is more than 60 years old treaty designed to promote world trade by reducing tariff and other international trade barriers. GATT stands for– 
            (a) General Aspects on Tariff and Trade (b) General Agreement on Tariffs and Trade (c) Geneva Agreement on Trade and Tariff 
            (d) General Allowance for Trade and Tariff (e) Geneva Agreement on Traffic or Trade (Ans : b)

            47. People differ greatly in their readiness to try new products. Which of the following do not belong to the adapter categorisation on the basis of relation time of adopter of innovators? 
            (a) Innovators (b) Laggards (c) Early majority (d) Late majority (e) Super majority (Ans : b)

            48. As per BCG Matrix of classification of SBUs of an organisation, Cash cows are SBUs that typically generate– 
            (a) large Awareness levels but few sales (b) problems for product managers often (c) high industry growth 
            (d) more cash than that can be invested profitably in its own business (e) paper losses in the long run (Ans : c)

            49. A strategy of pricing involves using price as in a competitive weapon in order to push competitors out of market or eliminate competitors. 
            (a) bargain (b) psychological (c) premium (d) advanced (e) predatory (Ans : e)

            50. The Insurance Regulatory and Development Authority of India (IRDAI) is an autonomous apex– 
            (a) consultative body (b) statutory body (c) advisory body (d) cooperative body (e) corporate body (Ans : b)

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