01. The Delhi Durbar of 1911 was held when King George V and Queen Mary came on a royal visit to India as a celebration of the king’s coronation. On this occasion Lord Hardinge made two announcements that would have far- reaching consequences for India. What were these?
02. Which is the largest land animal after the African elephant and the Asian elephant?
03. For the 2008 Olympics Beijing undertook a sweeping decision that eased congestion by 45% (of the city’s 3.2 million cars) and reduced pollution by 63%. How did they achieve this?
04. The IUPAC (the International Union of Pure and Applied Chemistry) calls this common molecule oxidane. The other ‘formal” name is dihydrogen monoxide. By what name do we know this important molecule?
05. With the invention of the typewriter the “curly” apostrophe, gave way to the “neutral” quotation mark, and this convention was carried over to computer keyboards and the ASCII character set. Why did typewriters create the neutral apostrophe?
06. What is the unusual name of the commission created by the Sri Lanka government to bring back normalcy to the communities in the aftermath of the last battle between the army and the LTTE?
07. Champs-Elysees in Paris is closed only three times a year – one is for the Bastille Day Parade. What are the other two occasions?
08. In 1803 John Dalton created the first set of 21 chemical elements depicted by symbols and letters. A decade later Berzelius created the symbols we know today by introducing two key changes to Dalton’s symbols. He removed the circles and designs and represented his 47 elements by letter alone. What other change did he make?
09. John Jasper was a lay precentor of Cloisterham Cathedral in the county of Kent. An opium addict, he was prime suspect in a trial on January 7, 1914 with Gilbert Keith Chesterton as judge and George Bernard Shaw as foreman of the jury. A verdict of manslaughter was returned. What was he tried for?
10. Which is Europe’s longest river and what’s unusual geographically about it?
11. What did Sandipani ask of Krishna and Balarama as his gurudakshina that resulted in an epochal event?
12. This unusual word comes from the Greek words for “fluid” and “the fluid that ran through the veins of Greek gods”. It describes the smell of rain on dry earth. The smell derives from an oil exuded by certain plants during dry periods, whereupon it is adsorbed (another word worth knowing) by clay- based soils and rocks. During rain, the oil is released into the air along with another compound, geosmin, producing the distinctive scent. What’s this word?
13. Giant pandas are known in China as the Great Cat-Bear because of a peculiarity in their eyes just like cats, but unlike other bears. What is it?
14. In 1987, what profitable innovation and collector’s item did Walt Disney Corporation legally make for use in their theme parks only?
15. Pravasi Bharatiya Divas, is celebrated in India on 9 January each year to mark the contribution of the overseas Indian community to the development of India. Why was this day chosen?
1. Transfer of the capital from Calcutta to Delhi and reunification of Bengal.
2. The hippopotamus
3. They introduced “odd-even” traffic restrictions based on the vehicle registration number for two months from July 20, 2008. On one day only vehicles whose registrations ended with odd numbers could be on the road while on the next day only those with even numbers were allowed.
5. To represent the apostrophe, both opening and closing single quotation marks, and single primes. It is also known as the typewriter apostrophe or vertical apostrophe.
6. Lessons Learnt and Reconciliation Commission
7. Paris Marathon; and because it is the ending stretch of the Tour de France.
8. Dalton used English letters for some elements like “L” for lead and “S” for silver. Berzelius gave all the elements Latin names since Latin was the common language of the learned in Europe.
9. For the murder of his nephew Edwin Drood. This literary “trial” was organised by the Dickens Society in the King’s Hall, Covent Garden to resolve the final unfinished novel of Charlles Dickens – The Mystery of Edwin Drood.
10. Volga – runs through only one country – Russia (2nd longest is Danube - Danube snakes through Germany, Austria, Hungary, Croatia, Serbia, Bulgaria, Moldova, Romania and the Ukraine before emptying into the Black Sea.
11. He asked Krishna and Balarama to get his son back from a demon who had abducted him. Varuna, the Lord of the waters revealed that the demon was living under the ocean. Krishna killed the demon and restored Sandipani’s son. The demon’s name was Panchajanya whose form as a conch was became Krishna’s conch. When Krishna blew the Panchajanya for the first time it marked the end of the Treta Yuga and the beginning of the Dwapara Yuga.
12. Petrichor (from the Greek words petros and ichor)
13. Pandas’ eyes have vertical pupils
14. It is rumoured that Disney may produce local versions of this item in their Europe and Asia parks owing to the wide fluctuations and loss of the value of the American dollar. Disney Dollars. The company profited from this idea since many collectors exchanged for actual U.S. dollars and kept them as part of their collection.
15. The day commemorates the arrival of Mahatama Gandhi in India from South Africa in 1915.