Current Affairs 04 March 2024 & Test | Latest News & Updates

Current Affairs 04 March 2024 & Test Latest News & Updates

 

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1. Which app has been developed for official communication and document sharing of paramilitary forces?

  1. Terra App
  2. SkyLink App
  3. Sands App
  4. EarthConnect App

Show The Answer

3. Sands App

2. Who has recently become the 119th member of the International Solar Alliance?

  1. Malta
  2. Papua New Guinea
  3. Solomon
  4. Chile

Show The Answer

1. Malta

3. Where will the joint military exercise ‘Desert Cyclone- 2024’ between India and UAE start?

  1. Gujarat
  2. Kerala
  3. Rajasthan
  4. Punjab

Show The Answer

3. Rajasthan

4. Which war exercise takes place between India and Egypt?

  1. CYCLONE
  2. SANDSTORM
  3. HURRICANE
  4. TYPHOON

Show The Answer

  1. CYCLONE

5. Recently, for the first time in India, Multi Sports Beach Games have been organized at a place called Dviv. Which state was the winner in this?

  1. Madhya Pradesh
  2. Delhi
  3. Uttar Pradesh
  4. Tamil Nadu

Show The Answer

  1. Madhya Pradesh

6. Where did the 58th All India DGP, IGP Annual Conference begin?

  1. Goa
  2. Mumbai
  3. Jaipur
  4. Jharkhand

Show The Answer

3. Jaipur

7. Recently IPS Rashmi Shukla has been appointed the first woman Director General of Police of which state?

 

  1. Uttar Pradesh
  2. Tamilnadu
  3. Maharashtra
  4. Kashmir

Show The Answer

3. Maharashtra

8. Recently Sheikh Hasina has been elected the Prime Minister of which country for the 5th time?

  1. Myanmar
  2. Bangladesh
  3. Nepal
  4. Maldives

Show The Answer

2. Bangladesh

9. ‘India – Brazil – South Africa (IBSA) FUND’ was formed in the year 2004. How much money has been announced by it recently for the eradication of conditions like poverty and hunger?

  1. 10 Lakh Dollar
  2. 11 Lakh Dollar
  3. 12 Lakh Dollar
  4. 13 Lakh Dollar

Show The Answer

  1. 10 Lakh Dollar

10. Select the appropriate option for QUAD.

  1. Australia – China – Japan – United States
  2. Fiji – India – Japan – United States
  3. Australia – India – Japan – Iran
  4. Australia – India – Japan – United States

Show The Answer

4. Australia – India – Japan – United States

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Some lines of current affairs 04 March 2024 news

National

The Ministry of Defence has signed five big contracts to buy military equipment for a total of Rs 39,125.39 Crore

On March 1st, 2024, the Ministry of Defence (MoD) in New Delhi signed five big contracts worth Rs 39,125.39 crore. These contracts included one with Hindustan Aeronautics Limited (HAL), two with Larsen & Toubro Limited (L&T), and two with BrahMos Aerospace Private Limited (BAPL).

Key Points:
The contracts were signed in the presence of Union Minister Rajnath Singh and under the guidance of Giridhar Aramane, Defence Secretary.

HAL Contract:

  • The MoD signed a contract worth Rs 5,249.72 crore with HAL, based in Bengaluru, for Klimov RD-33 Aero Engines for Mikoyan MiG-29 aircraft.
  • This contract also aims to increase local production for future engine repair and overhaul tasks.
  • The engines will be made by HAL’s Koraput Division under a Transfer of Technology license from the Russian manufacturer.
  • These engines will be used by the Indian Air Force to maintain the MiG-29 fleet.

L&T Contracts:

  • MoD signed two contracts with L&T, based in Mumbai, for a Close-in Weapon System (CIWS) and a High-Power Radar (HPR) system.
  • The CIWS contract is worth Rs 7,668.82 crore and aims to boost Indian participation in aerospace and defense.
  • CIWS will provide air defense to specific locations in India.
  • The HPR contract is valued at Rs 5,700.13 crore and is the first radar of its kind built by the private sector in India.
  • It will replace existing long-range radars for the Indian Air Force and enhance its air defense capabilities.

BAPL Contracts:

  • MoD signed two contracts with BAPL, based in New Delhi, for BrahMos missiles and a Shipborne BrahMos missile system.
  • The BrahMos missile contract is valued at Rs 19,518.65 crore and will serve the combat and training needs of the Indian Navy.
  • The Shipborne BrahMos missile contract, costing about Rs 988.07 crore, aims to develop a missile capable of hitting land or sea targets accurately at supersonic speeds for the Indian Navy.

About Ministry of Defence (MoD):

  • Union Minister: Rajnath Singh
  • Minister of State (MoS): Ajay Bhatt

DPIIT and the World Bank are working together to host a workshop on improving logistics efficiency nationally

The DPIIT, part of the MoCI, teamed up with the World Bank to host a workshop on boosting logistics efficiency in New Delhi.

Key attendees included Rajeev S. Thakur and E. Srinivas from DPIIT, along with Auguste Tano Kouame from the World Bank and Mio Oka from the ADB.

The workshop had three main parts:

  • Understanding how the World Bank calculates the Logistics Performance Index (LPI).
  • Exploring corridor projects like Bharatmala and Sagarmala to improve logistics efficiency and connectivity.
  • Learning from state officials about their successful logistics reforms and digital initiatives.

The workshop also covered the use of digital tools like E-Way Bill and Fastag to streamline logistics operations in India.

Regarding the World Bank, it’s a global organization owned by 187 countries, with Ajay Banga as President. It’s headquartered in Washington, D.C., USA, and was established in 1944.

Anant Ambani started a program called ‘Vantara’ to help animals

Anant Ambani, a Director at Reliance Industries Limited (RIL) and Reliance Foundation, launched the ‘Vantara’ (Star of the Forests) program. It helps injured, abused, and endangered animals in India and other countries.

The program’s goal is to rescue, treat, and care for injured, abused, and endangered animals in India and beyond. It’s the first of its kind in India and plans to build the world’s largest animal rescue and rehabilitation center, covering about 3,000 acres within the Green Belt of Reliance’s Jamnagar Refinery Complex in Gujarat.

Vantara also aims to protect endangered species native to India, restore their habitats, and tackle urgent threats to their survival. It provides specialized medical care and animal kitchens.

Banking and Finance

The RBI updated the BBPS Framework to make bill payments easier and issued guidelines for submitting supervisory returns

On February 29, 2024, the Reserve Bank of India (RBI) updated the rules for the Bharat Bill Payment Systems (BBPS) after reviewing changes in how payments are made. These new rules, called the RBI (BBPS) Directions, 2024, will start on April 1, 2024.

These updates will make it easier to pay bills, involve more people, and better protect customers, among other improvements. The RBI issued these rules under certain sections of the Payment and Settlement Systems (PSS) Act, 2007.

Additionally:

  • The RBI (Filing of Supervisory Returns) Directions 2024 were introduced to ease the burden on banks and non-banks when it comes to reporting and managing risks. These directions provide a single guide for all reporting requirements.
  • According to the RBI’s Quarterly House Price Index (HPI) for Q3FY24, the housing prices across India increased by 3.8% compared to the same period last year. This growth was higher than the previous quarters.

Some key facts about the Reserve Bank of India (RBI):

  • Governor: Shaktikanta Das
  • Deputy Governors: Swaminathan Janakiraman, Michael Debabrata Patra, M. Rajeshwar Rao, T. Rabi Sankar
  • Established: April 1, 1935
  • Headquarters: Mumbai, Maharashtra

RBI has updated the framework for fintech sandbox to make the process smoother

On February 28th, 2024, the Reserve Bank of India (RBI) updated its rules for fintech companies participating in the Regulatory Sandbox program. These changes were made based on feedback from fintech firms, banks, and other stakeholders who’ve been part of the program for the past 4.5 years.

Key Changes:

  • Extended Timelines: The overall time to complete the Regulatory Sandbox process has been extended from 7 to 9 months, excluding the initial screening period.
  • Data Protection Compliance: Firms in the sandbox must follow the Digital Personal Data Protection Act, 2023, ensuring they protect users’ data properly.
  • Partnership Arrangements: Fintech firms can now include potential partnerships with other parties in their initial application.
  • Test Design and Integration: RBI added a new phase for designing tests and integrating them into the sandbox process, overseen by its fintech department.
  • User Consent: Firms must now seek user consent in a language understandable to the customer, instead of just in the local language.
  • Theme Neutral Cohorts: The new framework allows testing of any innovative product or service, regardless of the theme, within RBI’s regulatory domain.
  • Previously Tested Products: Products or services similar to those already tested may not be eligible unless they bring new innovations.

What is RS?

The Regulatory Sandbox (RS) started on August 13, 2019, based on recommendations from a working group. It involves testing new financial products or services in a controlled regulatory environment to understand their benefits and risks.

Additional Info:

  • RBI first formed a group to review fintech regulations in 2016.
  • The ‘Enabling Framework for Regulatory Sandbox’ was introduced in 2019.

About Reserve Bank of India (RBI):

  • Governor: Shaktikanta Das
  • Headquarters: Mumbai, Maharashtra
  • Established: 1935

NIPL and Eurobank S.A. agreed to work together to provide foreign inward remittances using UPI

NPCI International Payments Limited (NIPL), a part of the National Payments Corporation of India (NPCI), and Greece-based Eurobank S.A. signed an agreement to make cross-border payments easier using the Unified Payments Interface (UPI) platform.

This move makes Greece one of the first European countries to allow UPI remittances, helping Indians in Greece send money back home more efficiently.
Goal: To simplify international money transfers, especially from Greece to India.
Who Signed: Ritesh Shukla, CEO of NIPL, and Fokion Karavias, CEO of Eurobank, signed the agreement at the Greek Embassy in New Delhi, India.

What It Does:

  • Both parties will assist in Foreign Inward Remittance transactions from Greece to India.
  • They will handle tasks like fund transfers, sorting out discrepancies, and resolving issues within their respective areas.

About the Agreement:

  • This partnership marks a significant step in spreading Indian payment tech worldwide, showcasing the effectiveness of UPI.
  • Eurobank wants to attract Indian businesses in Greece or Cyprus, serving as their gateway into the European market.
  • The agreement focuses on innovation and customer-friendly services, aiming to set higher standards for global payment systems and promote financial inclusion

About NPCI International Payments Limited (NIPL):

NIPL works on deploying RuPay (a domestic card scheme) and UPI (a mobile payment solution) outside India.

  • CEO: Ritesh Shukla
  • Established on April 3, 2020
  • Based in Mumbai, Maharashtra

Kotak Mahindra Bank introduced the ‘Smart Choice Gold Loan’

Kotak Mahindra Bank Limited (KMBL) introduced the ‘Smart Choice Gold Loan’ to make applying for and getting the loan easier. It’s designed to give customers the best value and flexibility to meet their credit needs.

The interest rate on this loan starts at just 0.88% per month. It also offers benefits such as no processing fee, quick disbursement on the same day, flexible repayment choices, and needing only a small amount of documentation.

These loans are a simple and dependable way to fulfill financial needs and make dreams a reality.

Economy and Business

SBI report suggests that the GDP growth for FY24 is expected to be close to 8%

On March 1, 2024, the State Bank of India (SBI) said the GDP growth for the 2023-24 financial year might reach around 8%, as per their ‘Ecowrap’ report.

In the third quarter of the financial year 2023-24, the Indian economy grew by 8.4%. There was a significant increase in indirect tax collection by 32% compared to the previous year, and the gap between GDP and GVA growth widened.

Key points from the report:

  • Manufacturing and services sectors showed strong growth, mainly because of a low base from the previous period.
  • Industries like manufacturing, electricity, gas, water supply, and construction sectors contributed to the growth, with manufacturing showing a growth of 11.6%.
  • Services also saw a notable growth rate of over 7%.
  • However, the agriculture sector declined by -0.8% in the third quarter due to factors beyond control.
  • The GDP deflator, which measures the change in the overall price level of goods and services, substantially slowed down annually from 6.8% in the previous financial year to 1.4% in FY24.
  • In the third quarter, the GDP deflator mildly increased to 1.7% from 1.5% in the second quarter of FY24.

Appointment and Resignations

The RBI has given approval for S Ravindran to become the part-time Chairman of TMB

The Reserve Bank of India (RBI) has approved S. Ravindran’s appointment as the part-time Chairman of Tamilnad Mercantile Bank Ltd. (TMB), effective from February 29, 2024, until August 2, 2026.

Ravindran currently serves as an Independent Director of TMB and also holds similar positions on the boards of National Stock Exchange of India Ltd (NSE India), LTIDPL Invit Services, and Shriram Finance Ltd, among others.

Conditions for Approval:
Ravindran must resign from his director roles at Shriram Finance Ltd and Bandhan AMC Ltd before starting his position as part-time Chairman of TMB.

Key Points:

  • The non-executive part-time Chairman position at TMB has been vacant since February 2, 2020, after S. Annamalai’s departure.
  • B. Vijayadurai was recommended for the Chairman’s post on August 20, 2022, but RBI rejected the recommendation on September 19, 2022.

About Ravindran Shunmugakani:

  • Ravindran worked initially as an Internal Auditor and later as Chief Financial Officer (CFO) at subsidiary companies of Shaw Wallace and Sesa Goa.
  • He served as an advisor to the Central Bank of Bahrain while on deputation from the Securities and Exchange Board of India (SEBI) from January 2005 to January 2010.
  • He held various positions such as Chief General Manager (CGM), General Manager (GM), and Deputy General Manager (DGM) at SEBI from March 1993 to January 2005.
  • Ravindran was also the Executive Director of SEBI from August 2011 to May 2022.
  • In 2023, he was appointed as an Additional Director in the category of Non-Executive Independent Director of TMB for a three-year term until 2026.

About Tamilnad Mercantile Bank Ltd. (TMB):

  • Established as The Nadar Bank Ltd in 1921, renamed Tamilnad Mercantile Bank Ltd on November 26, 1962.
  • Became a Scheduled Bank under the RBI Act on May 11, 1935.
  • MD & CEO: S Krishnan
  • Headquarters: Thoothukudi, Tamil Nadu
  • Tagline: Be a step ahead of Life

Science and Technology

Russia sends Iran’s ‘Pars 1’ research satellite into space

Russia used its Soyuz-2.1b rocket to launch Pars 1, a satellite for Iran, from the Vostochny Cosmodrome in Russia, around 8,000 kilometers east of Moscow. The satellite was placed into orbit 500 kilometers above Earth.

Pars 1 will take detailed pictures of Iran’s land using its 15-meter camera and send them back from space. It’s the 12th satellite launched since President Ebrahim Raisi’s administration began in August 2021. Along with Pars 1, the Russian rocket carried a Russian weather satellite and 17 small Russian satellites.

The main goals of Pars-1 are:

  • Taking useful pictures for different purposes.
  • Building up the market for Iranian remote sensing data.
  • Testing technologies for future satellites.

Some key points about Pars-1:

  • It was made in Iran by the Iranian Space Research Institute and is for remote sensing and testing new satellite technologies.
  • The satellite weighs 134 kilograms and has three cameras to capture images of Earth in different ways.
  • It can photograph 95% of Iran in less than 100 days and the whole country in less than 45 days, even at night.

The satellite uses a high-speed transmitter in the X-band to send data quickly back to Earth. This is a big step forward in how fast satellites can send information.

Special ground stations are set up to receive the images from the satellite efficiently, making sure the Pars 1 mission runs smoothly.

Environment

A new kind of sea slug called Melanochlamys Droupadi found in Odisha and West Bengal

Researchers from the Zoological Survey of India (ZSI) found a new type of sea slug called ‘Melanochlamys Droupadi’ near the coasts of Odisha and West Bengal. They named it after Droupadi Murmu, the 15th President of India. This discovery was shared in the online version of a journal called ‘Mollusca Research.’

Here are some key points about Melanochlamys Droupadi:

  • It’s a new species in the Melanochlamys group.
  • Its suggested common name is Droupadi’s head-shield sea slug.
  • Melanochlamys Droupadi was spotted in the Bay of Bengal near Udaipur (Odisha) and Digha (West Bengal).
  • This sea slug is brownish-black with a ruby red spot and can grow up to 7 millimeters.
  • It has both male and female reproductive organs and carries a shell within its body.
  • About 61% of its body length is taken up by its rear end.
  • This is the second Melanochlamys species found in India, following the discovery of Melanochlamys Bengalensis in 2022.

Some extra details:

  • Sea slugs are marine animals related to squids, snails, and clams.
  • They’re active hunters, preying on small creatures.
  • Sea slugs live in various habitats, from shallow waters to the deep sea, and they can be found in both polar and tropical regions.

Sports

Puneri Paltan beats Haryana Steelers to win Pro Kabaddi League Season 10

Puneri Paltan won the Pro Kabaddi League Season 10 by beating Haryana Steelers in the finals at GMC Balayogi Stadium in Gachibowli, Hyderabad. It’s Puneri Paltan’s first-ever PKL title since it began in 2014. They got Rs 3 crore as prize money, while Haryana Steelers, the runners-up, received Rs 1.8 crore. PKL 10, with 12 teams, ran from February 26 to March 1, 2024.

Awards:

  • Best Raider: Ashu Malik (Dabang Delhi K.C.) – Rs 15 Lakhs
  • Best Defender: Mohammadreza Chiyaneh Shadloui (Puneri Paltan) – Rs 15 Lakhs
  • New Young Player: Yogesh Dahiya (Dabang Delhi K.C.) – Rs 8 Lakhs
  • Most Valuable Player: Aslam Inamdar (Puneri Paltan) – Rs 20 Lakhs
  • Game Changer of the Final: Gaurav Khatri (Puneri Paltan) – Rs 50,000
  • Moment of the Final: Pankaj Mohite (Puneri Paltan) – Rs 50,000

Obituary

Famous archaeologist Arun Kumar Sharma, who received the Padma Shri award, has passed away

Renowned archaeologist Arun Kumar Sharma, who received the Padma Shri award, passed away at 91 in Raipur, Chhattisgarh. He was born on November 12, 1933, in Mohandi village near Chandkhuri, Chhattisgarh.

Awards:
Padma Shri (Others category) in 2017.

About Arun Kumar Sharma:

  • Arun Kumar Sharma joined the Archaeological Survey of India (ASI) in 1959.
  • He worked in ASI for 33 years and retired as Superintendent Archaeologist at ASI Nagpur, Maharashtra, in 1992.
  • From 2004 to 2018, he served as the archaeological advisor to the Chhattisgarh government.
  • After retiring, he helped ASI with excavations at archaeological sites in Sirpur (Chhattisgarh) and Mansar (Maharashtra).
  • He was also the General Secretary of the All-India Association of Archaeologists and authored 35 books on archaeology.

Books and Authors

Odisha’s Chief Minister, Naveen Patnaik, launches a book called ‘FIH Odisha Hockey Men’s World Cup 2023’

Odisha’s Chief Minister, Naveen Patnaik, unveiled a book called ‘FIH Odisha Hockey Men’s World Cup 2023’. It’s a 252-page book published by Sportstar, The Hindu Group’s sports magazine. This book covers everything about the 15th FIH Odisha Hockey Men’s World Cup, held from January 13th to 29th, 2023, in Bhubaneswar & Rourkela, Odisha.

The book captures both the on-field and off-field moments of the tournament, including the sports action, cultural events, and the excitement of the spectators.

Germany emerged as the champion of the FIH Odisha Hockey Men’s World Cup 2023 by defeating Belgium in the finals held at Kalinga Stadium in Bhubaneswar, Odisha.

Important Days

Happy World Seagrass Day 2024! Today, we celebrate the importance of seagrass

World Seagrass Day, established by the United Nations, is celebrated globally every March 1st to highlight the importance of seagrasses in marine biodiversity, their threats, and their role in sustainable development and fighting climate change.

March 1, 2024, marks the second World Seagrass Day.

Seagrasses are underwater plants found in shallow marine waters.

Background:

  • On May 23, 2022, the UN General Assembly declared March 1st as World Seagrass Day through resolution A/RES/76/265.
  • The UN Environment Programme (UNEP) was tasked with organizing the observance of the Day.
  • The first World Seagrass Day took place on March 1, 2023.
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