Flash Card

LAKSHYA-75 [Day-22] Static Flash Cards for IAS Prelims 2020

Himalayan Rivers;Divergent Boundaries; Convergent Boundaries; Transform Boundaries; Gorges; Canyons; V-Shaped Valley; Rapids, waterfalls and Cascade; Plunge pool; Grooves; Interlocking spurs; Potholes; River Terraces; Continental Shelf; Continental Slope; Deep Sea Plain; Oceanic Deeps or Trenches; Hard Corals and Soft Corals; National river conservation plan; Retreating Monsson; Peninsular Rivers; Volga River; Rhine River; Danube River; Drainage system of Mohenjodaro; Tipitaka of Buddhism.
By IASToppers
March 28, 2020



What are the three texts of the Tipitaka of Buddhism?

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The Vinaya Pitaka included rules and regulations for those who joined the sangha or monastic order; the Buddha ‘s teachings were included in the Sutta Pitaka; and the Abhidhamma Pitaka dealt with philosophical matters.

Enrich Your Learning:

How Buddhist text were prepared?

  • The Buddha (and other teachers) taught orally — through discussion and debate. Men and women (perhaps children as well) attended these discourses and discussed what they heard. None of the Buddha ‘s speeches were written down during his lifetime.
  • After his death (c. fifth-fourth century BCE) his teachings were compiled by his disciples at a council of “elders” or senior monks at Vesali. These compilations were known as Tipitaka — literally, three baskets to hold different types of texts.
  • They were first transmitted orally and then written and classified according to length as well as subject matter. Each pitaka comprised a number of individual texts. Later, commentaries were written on these texts by Buddhist scholars.
  • As Buddhism travelled to new regions such as Sri Lanka, other texts such as the Dipavamsa (literally, the chronicle of the island) and Mahavamsa (the great chronicle) were written, containing regional histories of Buddhism.
  • Many of these works contained biographies of the Buddha. Some of the oldest texts are in Pali, while later compositions are in Sanskrit.
  • When Buddhism spread to East Asia, pilgrims such as Fa Xian and Xuan Zang travelled all the way from China to India in search of texts. These they took back to their own country, where they were translated by scholars.
  • Indian Buddhist teachers also travelled to faraway places, carrying texts to disseminate the teachings of the Buddha.
  • Buddhist texts were preserved in manuscripts for several centuries in monasteries in different parts of Asia. Modern translations have been prepared from Pali, Sanskrit, Chinese and Tibetan texts.



The upper town at Mohenjodaro provides examples of residential buildings. True OR False.

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Answer: False.

Correct statement: The Lower Town at Mohenjodaro provides examples of residential buildings.

Enrich Your Learning:

Enrich Your Learning:

Drainage system of Mohenjodaro:

  • One of the most distinctive features of Harappan cities was the carefully planned drainage system.
  • At the plan of the Lower Town, roads and streets were laid out along an approximate “grid” pattern, intersecting at right angles.
  • It seems that streets with drains were laid out first and then houses built along them.
  • If domestic waste water had to flow into the street drains, every house needed to have at least one wall along a street.

Domestic architecture:

  • Residential buildings were centred on a courtyard, with rooms on all sides.
  • The courtyard was probably the centre of activities such as cooking and weaving, particularly during hot and dry weather.
  • There is an apparent concern for privacy: there are no windows in the walls along the ground level. Besides, the main entrance does not give a direct view of the interior or the courtyard.
  • Every house had its own bathroom paved with bricks, with drains connected through the wall to the street drains.
  • Some houses have remains of staircases to reach a second storey or the roof. Many houses had wells, often in a room that could be reached from the outside and perhaps used by passers-by.
  • The total number of wells in Mohenjodaro was about 700.



Which is the Europe’s second longest river after the Volga? a) Rhine OR b) Danube

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Answer: Danube

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Volga River:

  • The Volga is the longest river in Europe with a catchment area of 1,350,000 square kilometres.
  • It is also Europe’s largest river in terms of discharge and drainage basin.
  • The river flows through central Russia and into the Caspian Sea, and is widely regarded as the national river of Russia.
  • Eleven of the twenty largest cities of Russia, including the capital, Moscow, are located in the Volga’s drainage basin.

Rhine River:

  • The Rhine is one of the longest and most important river in Europe. It runs for over 1,232 km from its source in the in the Swiss Alps (in Switzerland).
  • The Rhine flows through six countries -Switzerland, Principality of Liechtenstein, Austria, Germany, France and the Netherlands before flowing into the North Sea at Rotterdam.
  • It is the second-longest river in Central and Western Europe after the Danube.
  • The River Rhine is called different names depending on the country it flows through. It is called Rhein in Germany; Rhine in France and Rijn in Netherlands.

Danube River:

  • The Danube is Europe’s second longest river, after the Volga. It is located in Central and Eastern Europe.
  • It rises in the Black Forest mountain of western Germany and flows for some 1,770 miles (2,850 km) to its mouth on the Black Sea.
  • Along its course it passes through 10 countries: Germany, Austria, Slovakia, Hungary, Croatia, Serbia, Bulgaria, Romania, Moldova, and Ukraine.
  • Since ancient times, the Danube has become a traditional trade route in Europe, nowadays 2,415 km of its total length being navigable. The river is also an important source of energy and drinking water.



Himalayan Rivers are comparatively smaller and shorter than the Peninsular Rivers. True OR False.

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Answer: False.

Correct Statements:

Peninsular Rivers are comparatively smaller and shorter than the Himalayan Rivers.

Enrich Your Learning:

Himalayan Rivers and Peninsular Rivers:

  • The rivers in India can be categorized into two different categories based on their origin: The Himalayan Rivers and the Peninsular Rivers.

Himalayan Rivers:

  • The Himalayan Rivers are the rivers that originate from the Himalayan mountain ranges.
  • These rivers are snow fed; they receive water from the melting ice of the glaciers as well as from the rains. The three main Himalayan Rivers are the Ganga, the Indus and the Brahmaputra.
  • These three rivers flow towards the West and collectively form the Himalayan River System. These rivers are also known as three different river systems as they have many tributaries.
  • These rivers are very long and generally cover thousands of kilometers before emptying into the sea.
  • Furthermore, the mouth of these rivers, the point where they meet the sea, form large deltas, e.g. the Ganges-Brahmaputra delta is the biggest delta in the world.

Peninsular Rivers:

  • The peninsular rivers are the rivers that originate from the peninsular plateaus and small hills of India.
  • These rivers are seasonal or non-perennial as they receive water only form the rains and thus cannot maintain water flow throughout the year.
  • Some of the famous peninsular rivers include Kaveri, Narmada, Tapi, Krishna, Mahanadi and Godavari.
  • Furthermore, peninsular rivers are consequent rivers as they follow the direction of the slope.



In retreating monsoons, winds move back from the mainland to the Bay of Bengal. True OR False.

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Enrich Your Learning:

Retreating Monsson:

  • The months of October and November are known for retreating monsoons.
  • In the season of the retreating monsoons, winds move back from the mainland to the Bay of Bengal.
  • The southern parts of India, particularly Tamil Nadu and Andhra Pradesh receive rainfall in this season.
  • This climate has the average weather condition, which have been measured over many years.
  • The climate of India has broadly been described as Monsoon type.
  • Monsoon is taken from the Arabic word ‘mausim’, which means seasons.
  • Due to India’s location in the tropical region, most of the rain is brought by monsoon winds.
  • Agriculture in India is dependent on rains. Good monsoons mean adequate rain and a bountiful crop.
  • ‘Mawsynram’ in Meghalaya receives the world’s highest rainfall.



Ganga Action Plan II was launched in 1993. Which River are included under this action plan?

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It included of River Yamuna, Gomti and major tributaries of River Ganga.

Enrich Your Learning:

National river conservation plan:


  • The Central Government started the river pollution abatement programme with the launching of the Ganga Action Plan (GAP-I) in the year 1985.
  • GAP Phase II was launched in 1993 for pollution abatement of river Yamuna and Gomti, major tributaries of river Ganga.
  • The river pollution abatement programme was further expanded to include other major rivers of the country in 1995 under the aegis of National River Conservation Plan (NRCP).

About National River Conservation Plan (NRCP):

  • The objective of NRCP is to reduce the pollution load in rivers.
  • The pollution abatement works taken up under the NRCP include;
  1. Interception and diversion works of sewerage systems to capture raw sewage flowing into the rivers through open drains and diverting them for treatment;
  2. Setting up of Sewage Treatment Plants (STPs) for treating the diverted sewage;
  3. Construction of Low Cost Sanitation Toilets to prevent open defecation on river banks;
  4. Construction of Electric Crematoria and Improved Wood Crematoria to conserve the use of wood;
  5. River Front Development works, such as improvement of bathing Ghats;
  6. Public participation & awareness and capacity building, etc.
  • The Ministry of Environment, Forest & Climate Change is presently implementing the works for pollution abatement of rivers, other than Ganga and its tributaries.
  • Presently NRCP (excluding Ganga and its tributaries) has covered polluted stretches of 33 rivers in 76 towns spread over 15 States.



Which corals are known as ‘reef-building’ corals? a) soft coral OR b) Hard coral

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Answer: Hard Coral

Enrich Your Learning:

What are corals?

  • Corals are invertebrate animals belonging to a large group of colourful and fascinating animals called Cnidaria.
  • Each individual coral animal is called a polyp, and most live in groups of hundreds to thousands of genetically identical polyps that form a ‘colony’. The colony is formed by a process called budding.
  • Coral polyps have developed this relationship with tiny single-celled plants, known as zooxanthellae.
  • Inside the tissues of each coral, polyp live these microscopic, single-celled algae, sharing space, gas exchange and nutrients to survive.

What are Hard Corals and Soft Corals?

Hard Corals

Soft Corals

·         Hard corals have a calcareous skeleton for support.

·         Hard corals live in colonies.

·         Hard corals rely on symbiotic algae (zooxanthellae) living within their tissues for nutrition and energy to build their skeleton.

·         Hard coral polyps have multiples of six tentacles.

·         They must, therefore, live in shallow clear water to allow sunlight to reach the algae

·         Hard corals extract abundant calcium from surrounding seawater and use this to create a hardened structure for protection and growth.

·         Hard corals are also known as the ‘reef-building’ corals.

·         They grow wood-like cores for support.

·         Soft corals also live in colonies.

·         Their polyps have tentacles that occur in numerals of eight.

·         Soft corals are found in oceans from the equator to the north and south poles, generally in caves or ledges.





Mention the major divisions of the Ocean Floors.

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The ocean floors can be divided into four major divisions:

  1. the Continental Shelf;
  2. the Continental Slope;
  • the Deep-Sea Plain;
  1. the Oceanic Deeps.

Enrich Your Learning:

Divisions of the Ocean Floors:

Continental Shelf:

  • The continental shelf is the extended margin of each continent occupied by relatively shallow seas and gulfs.
  • It is the shallowest part of the ocean showing an average gradient of 1° or even less.
  • The shelf typically ends at a very steep slope, called the shelf break.
  • The width of the continental shelves vary from one ocean to another.
  • The average width of continental shelves is about 80 km.
  • The shelves are almost absent or very narrow along some of the margins like the coasts of Chile, the west coast of Sumatra, etc.
  • On the contrary, the Siberian shelf in the Arctic Ocean, the largest in the world, stretches to 1,500 km in width.
  • The depth of the shelves also varies. It may be as shallow as 30 m in some areas while in some areas it is as deep as 600 m.
  • The continental shelves are covered with variable thicknesses of sediments brought down by rivers, glaciers, wind, from the land and distributed by waves and currents.
  • Massive sedimentary deposits received over a long time by the continental shelves, become the source of fossil fuels.

Continental Slope:

  • The continental slope connects the continental shelf and the ocean basins.
  • It begins where the bottom of the continental shelf sharply drops off into a steep slope.
  • The gradient of the slope region varies between 2-5°. The depth of the slope region varies between 200 and 3,000 m.
  • The slope boundary indicates the end of the continents. Canyons and trenches are observed in this region.

Deep Sea Plain:

  • They are gently sloping areas of the ocean basins. These are the flattest and smoothest regions of the world.
  • The depths vary between 3,000 and 6,000m. These plains are covered with fine-grained sediments like clay and silt.

Oceanic Deeps or Trenches:

  • These areas are the deepest parts of the oceans. The trenches are relatively steep sided, narrow basins. They are some 3-5 km deeper than the surrounding ocean floor.
  • They occur at the bases of continental slopes and along island arcs and are associated with active volcanoes and strong earthquakes.
  • That is why they are very significant in the study of plate movements.
  • As many as 57 deeps have been explored so far; of which 32 are in the Pacific Ocean; 19 in the Atlantic Ocean and 6 in the Indian Ocean.

Besides, these divisions there are also major and minor relief features in the ocean floors like ridges, hills, sea mounts, guyots, trenches, canyons, etc.



Define the term Eddying in terms of erosional work of a river.

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Eddying: The swirling movement of the water falling into the plunge pool is called eddying.

Enrich Your Learning:

Landforms by the Erosional Work of River:

The erosional work of rivers results in various types of landforms like a gorge, canyon, V-Shaped Valley, waterfall, pothole, structural bench, river terrace, river meander, ox-bow lake, peneplain.


  • A gorge is a narrow and deep river valley which has steep slopes.
  • Gorges are formed due to active down cutting of the valleys.


  • Canyons are an extended form of gorges. Canyons represent very deep, narrow but long valleys.
  • The steepness of the valley sides depends on the nature of the rocks.
  • The Grand Canyon of the Colorado River in the USA is the largest canyon in the world.
  • The Canyon of Gandikota is situated on the Pennar River in Andhra Pradesh is known as the Grand Canyon of India.

V-Shaped Valley:

  • V-shaped Valleys are formed in the youthful stage of the river erosion.
  • Due to the steep slope and large volume of water, the river cuts its bed vertically forming a narrow and deep river valley.

Rapids, waterfalls and Cascade:

  • Rapids are stream sections with extremely strong currents, numerous obstacles, and steps in their streambeds.
  • A waterfall is a vertical drop in a streambed. Both waterfall and rapids are formed by vigorous erosion.
  • Series of a waterfall in a river is called as

Plunge pool:

  • A plunge pool is a deep depression in a stream bed at the base of a waterfall. It is created by the erosional forces of falling water at the base of a waterfall.


  • Grooves are long and narrow depression at the base of a waterfall made by river runoff.
  • The grooves are created by water eroding soil from a hill or mountain in a short period of time.

Interlocking spurs:

  • An interlocking spur, also known as an overlapping spur, is a projecting ridge that extends alternately from the opposite sides of a V-shaped valley. A river with a winding course flows down the interlocking spur.


  • Potholes are the kettle-like small depressions in the rocky beds of the river valleys.
  • They are always cylindrical in shape.
  • Potholes are generally formed in coarse-grained rocks such as sandstones and granites.

River Terraces:

  • River Terraces are narrow step like flat surfaces on either side of the valley floor.
  • They represent the level of former valley floors.



Mid-Atlantic Ridge is an example of________. a) Convergent Boundaries OR b) Divergent Boundaries

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Answer: Divergent Boundaries

Enrich Your Learning:

Types of plates boundaries:

Divergent Boundaries:

  • Where new crust is generated as the plates pull away from each other. The sites where the plates move away from each other are called spreading sites.
  • Example of divergent boundaries is the Mid-Atlantic Ridge. At this, the American Plate(s) is/are separated from the Eurasian and African Plates.

Convergent Boundaries:

  • Where the crust is destroyed as one plate dived under another. The location where sinking of a plate occurs is called a subduction zone.
  • There are three ways in which convergence can occur. These are:

(i) between an oceanic and continental plate;

(ii) between two oceanic plates; and

(iii) between two continental plates.

Transform Boundaries:

  • Where the crust is neither produced nor destroyed as the plates slide horizontally past each other.
  • Transform faults are the planes of separation generally perpendicular to the midoceanic ridges.
  • As the eruptions do not take all along the entire crest at the same time, there is a differential movement of a portion of the plate away from the axis of the earth.
  • The rotation of the earth has its effect on the separated blocks of the plate portions.
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