Current Affairs | National | International | SSC | UPSC -4th March 2024


1.Sarbananda Sonowal Inaugurates First Made-In-India ASTDS Tug 

  • Sarbananda Sonowal, Union Minister of MoPSW & AYUSH, virtually inaugurated the 60T bollard pull tug named ‘Ocean Grace’ and the Medical Mobile Unit (MMU) on March 2, 2024.
  • The Ocean Grace is the first Make-in-India ASTDS Tug developed by Cochin Shipyard Limited under MoPSW. The MMU is part of the port’s commitment to corporate social responsibility. 
  • The MMU, dedicated alongside the Ocean Grace, offers a diverse range of healthcare services, underscoring the port’s dedication to community well-being. 

2.Chapchar Kut Festival Celebrated Across Mizoram 

  • Chapchar Kut, the grandest festival in Mizoram, resonated throughout the state with vibrant traditional customs and jubilant festivities. 
  • Thousands of attendees converged upon the Assam Rifles Ground – Lammual – in the heart of Aizawl city, filling it to its capacity. 
  • The event featured a rich display of Mizo community traditions and culture, highlighted by traditional songs and captivating cultural dance performances, making it a day-long celebration to remember. 

3. Chandigarh University becomes overall champion in Khelo India University Games 2023 

  • Chandigarh University won the KIUG crown for the first time with a total of 71 medals – 32 gold, 18 silver and 21 bronze – at the 4th Khelo India University Games-2023. 
  • The Khelo India University Games 2023 started on 17 February 2024 with the Ashtalakshmi mascot and was officially declared closed by Smt. Nandita Gorlosa, Sports Minister of Assam on 29 February 2024 at the Sarusajai Sports Complex.
  • Lovely Professional University stood second with 20 gold, 14 silver and 8 bronze medals, while Guru Nanak Dev University stood third with 12 gold, 20 silver and 19 bronze. Defending champion Panjab University finished fourth in the boxing field with 12 gold, 12 silver and 16 bronze medals, winning five gold, two silver and three bronze medals. Chandigarh University won seven gold medals in wrestling, eight in athletics, three each in weightlifting and swimming, two in fencing and one each in kabaddi, rugby, judo and badminton. 
  • Utkal University's Pratyasa Ray, with four gold, one silver and one bronze, was the most successful female athlete of the Games, while the most successful male athlete honor went to another swimmer, Xavier Michael D'Souza of Jain University, who won four gold medals. 
  • The Khelo India University Games is a part of the Khelo India initiative of the Government of India which was launched in 2016. Khelo India University Games 2022 was held in 4 cities of Uttar Pradesh. 

New Records 

  • A record of five new sports was also created in athletics in the fourth edition of the Games in North-East India. 
  • Chandigarh University's Vikas on the first day of the athletics competition saw javelin thrower Jyoti (Chaudhary Devi Lal University), pole vaulter M Gautam and long jumper Vishnu (Madras University) and 800m runner Amandeep Kaur set the first record of the Games in men's 1500m. 
  • In the javelin throw event, Deepika of Chandigarh University had created a new Games record in her third throw, but Jyoti surpassed her mark and registered her name in the record books. 

4.INAS 334 Squadron To Welcome MH 60R ‘Seahawks’ Into The Indian Navy 

  • The Indian Navy is poised to achieve a significant milestone on March 6, 2024, with the commissioning of the MH 60R Seahawk helicopter at INS Garuda, Kochi. 
  • The Seahawks squadron will be designated as INAS 334, symbolizing a new era in naval aviation for the country. 
  • These helicopters are part of a 24-aircraft Foreign Military Sales (FMS) contract inked with the US government in February 2020. 

5. New naval base 'INS Jatayu' to be inaugurated in Minicoy, Lakshadweep 

  • INS Jatayu will be commissioned on March 6, 2024 in the presence of Admiral R Hari Kumar, Chief of the Naval Staff, at Minicoy, Lakshadweep. Which will enhance the security infrastructure in the strategically important Lakshadweep Islands. 
  • The move is part of the government's plan to boost military presence and security infrastructure in the region. INS Jatayu will be the second naval base in Lakshadweep after INS Dweeprakshak at Kavaratti, which will improve the Navy's operational capability and reach in the region, especially for anti-piracy and antinarcotics operations. 
  • Minicoy, the southernmost island of the Lakshadweep archipelago, is strategically located in the Arabian Sea, straddling the Sea Critical Lines of Communication (SLOC). 
  • Naval Detachment Minicoy was established in the early 1980s. It was established under the command of Naval Officer-inCharge (Lakshadweep). 

Indian Naval Base 

  • The Indian Navy has several major bases across the country, including Mumbai, Goa, Karwar, Kochi, Chennai, Visakhapatnam, Kolkata and Port Blair. The navy's largest ships are divided between its two fleets. 
  • The Western Fleet is stationed at Mumbai, while the Eastern Fleet is based at Visakhapatnam. The Southern Naval Command functions as a training command based at Kochi. 
  • The Navy is headed by the Chief of the Naval Staff (CNS), who holds the rank of Admiral and is headquartered at New Delhi. Each command is headed by a ViceAdmiral who holds the title of 'Flag Officer Commander-in-Chief'. 

6.Amit Shah Launches National Urban Cooperative Finance And Development Corporation Limited (NUCFDC) 

  • Home Minister Amit Shah inaugurated the National Urban Cooperative Finance and Development Corporation Limited (NUCFDC) in New Delhi. 
  • This umbrella organization aims to modernize and strengthen the Urban Cooperative Banking Sector, benefiting banks and customers alike.
  •  It highlights the objective of establishing an Urban Cooperative Bank in every town as part of the One Town-One Urban Cooperative Bank initiative. 
  • It received certification from the Reserve Bank of India to operate as a Non-Banking Finance Company and a Self-Regulatory Organisation. 

7. Uttar Pradesh becomes the first state in the country to issue maximum 5 crore Ayushman cards. 

  • Uttar Pradesh has become the first state in the country to issue five crore Ayushman cards under the Ayushman Bharat Pradhan Mantri Jan Arogya Yojana. 
  • According to the release of the state government, 5 crore 17 thousand nine hundred twenty Ayushman cards have been issued in the state. 7 crore 43 lakh 82 thousand three hundred four people have benefited from this. 
  • A total of 3716 hospitals in the state are included in the panel of this scheme. A total of 34 lakh 81 thousand 252 health claims were filed under the Ayushman Bharat scheme. Out of these, 32 lakh 75 thousand claims have been settled. The health claim settlement rate in the state is 92.48 percent. 
  • Sangeeta Singh, chief executive officer of the state agency for comprehensive health and integrated services, called the achievement significant. He said that this is the result of the continuous support of the National Health Authority and the dedication of local workers, Panchayat assistants, AIIMS, medical officers, ASHAs and other workers. 
  • There is a significant increase in the number of patients getting free treatment under this scheme every day. Earlier, an average of two thousand patients were admitted to the hospital under this scheme every day, which has now increased to about eight thousand per day. 

Ayushman Bharat-PMJAY 

  • PM-JAY is the world's largest health insurance scheme fully funded by the government. 
  • Launched in 2018, it provides a sum assured of Rs 5 lakh per family for secondary care and tertiary care. 
  • The scheme is funded jointly, 60:40 between the Centre and the legislature in case of all States and UTs, 90:10 for North Eastern States and Jammu & Kashmir, Himachal & Uttarakhand and 100% central funding for UTs without legislature. 
  • The National Health Authority (NHA) has been constituted as an autonomous entity under the Societies Registration Act, 1860 for effective implementation of PMJAY jointly with the State Governments. 

8. China will be the host country of the 2027 World Athletics Championships 

  • The World Athletics (WA) governing body has announced that China's capital Beijing will host the 2027 edition of its flagship World Athletics Championships. WA announced the decision after its council meeting in Scotland ahead of the upcoming World Athletics Indoor Championships. 
  • 2027 will be the second time that China has hosted the World Athletics Championships, having previously done so in Beijing in 2015. Beijing was also the host city of the 2008 Olympic Games. 
  • Indeed, the main venue for the 2027 event will be the country's Olympic Stadium, an 80,000-seat venue that was built before Beijing 2008. 
  • WA Chairman Sebastian Coe said: “With a population of more than 1.4 billion, China is one of the largest sporting markets in the world. It was the top performer for Wanda Diamond League broadcast consumption in 2023 with a cumulative audience of 368.9 million. 
  • Ahead of the biennial tournament, China will also host the 2025 edition of the World Athletics Indoor Championships in the city of Nanjing. 
  • Beijing-based sports commentator Liu Yu said Beijing is ready to showcase its attractiveness as a "double Olympic city". Beijing is the first city in the world to host both the Summer and Winter Olympic Games. 

9.World Hearing Day 2024 

  • Observed every year on March 3, World Hearing Day 2024 fall on a Sunday. The theme for this year, as designated by the World Health Organization (WHO), is “Changing mindsets: Let’s make ear and hearing care a reality for all.” 
  • World Hearing Day stands as a global call to action, focusing on the prevention of deafness, hearing loss, and the promotion of ear and hearing care across the globe. 
  • This annual event not only encourages individuals to safeguard their hearing but also seeks treatment for hearing-related issues. 

10.National Safety Day 2024 

  • National Safety Day is celebrated each year on March 4. In India, this date also signals the commencement of National Safety Week, extending the focus on safety measures beyond just a day. 
  • National Safety Day, observed annually, underscores the critical importance of safety and precautionary measures across all sectors. 
  • The theme for National Safety Day 2024, “Safety for a Sustainable Future,” brings to light the intrinsic link between safety measures and sustainability. 

11.Telangana Government Announces Launch Of Indiramma Housing Scheme 

  • Telangana Chief Minister A Revanth Reddy has announced the launch of the Indiramma Housing Scheme starting March 11. The scheme aims to provide housing solutions to the economically disadvantaged segments of society. 
  • The first phase will witness the approval of 3,500 houses in each Assembly constituency, catering to a significant number of beneficiaries. 
  • Individuals owning a plot of land will receive Rs. 5 lakh for constructing a new house on their plot. Homeless individuals will be provided with Rs. 5 lakh along with a house plot for construction. 

12.Haj Suvidha App Launched And Haj Guide Released For Haj-2024 By Union Minister Smriti Irani 

  • Union Minister for Minority Affairs, Smriti Zubin Irani, introduced two significant initiatives aimed at enhancing the Haj pilgrimage experience for 2024. 
  • The Haj Suvidha App was launched to provide essential information and access to crucial services, while the Haj Guide-2024 was released to educate pilgrims about various aspects of the journey, with a focus on utilizing the app effectively. 

13.Ministry Of I&B Honored For Outstanding Accounting Performance 

  • On the occasion of the 48th Foundation Day of the Indian Civil Accounts Service, the Ministry of Information & Broadcasting has been honored with the Award for Best Performance in Accounts during the Financial Year 2023-24. 
  • Under the able leadership of Ajay S. Singh, serving as the Chief Controller of Accounts, the Ministry of Information & Broadcasting has demonstrated unparalleled efficiency and diligence in its accounting practices. 

14.Dr Pradeep Mahajan Receives Maharashtra Bhushan Award 2024 

  • Dr. Pradeep Mahajan, the Founder and Chairman and Managing Director of StemRx Hospital and Research Centre, along with StemRx Bioscience Solutions, has been awarded the prestigious Maharashtra Bhushan Award 2024. 
  • This accolade is a testament to his pioneering efforts and substantial impact in advancing regenerative medicine, offering new hope and innovative treatments to patients worldwide. 
  • Dr. Mahajan has focused on providing cost-effective solutions with minimal side effects, thereby enhancing patient care and quality of life. 

15.BPCL Teams Up With Neeraj Chopra As Brand Ambassador For ‘Speed’ Petrol 

  • Bharat Petroleum Corporation (BPCL), one of India’s leading petroleum companies, has recently announced its partnership with Olympic and World Javelin Champion Neeraj Chopra. 
  • Neeraj Chopra will serve as the brand ambassador for BPCL’s premium petrol variant, ‘Speed.’ This collaboration adds to BPCL’s list of esteemed brand ambassadors. 
  • Speed’s technology aims to address engine problems caused by low-quality fuel by providing comprehensive care for all engine components. It prevents rust, corrosion, and provides overall protection, thereby reducing maintenance costs and extending the engine’s lifespan. 

16.Tuvalu Appoints Feleti Teo As New Prime Minister 

  • Tuvalu has named Feleti Teo, the former Attorney General, as the Pacific Island nation’s new prime minister. 
  • This appointment comes in the aftermath of a general election that placed the country’s diplomatic affiliations, especially its ties with Taiwan, under intense scrutiny. 
  • Feleti Teo’s elevation to the prime ministerial position was marked by an uncontested nomination, as he was the sole candidate proposed by his 15 lawmaker colleagues. 

17.Pro Kabaddi League Season 10, Puneri Paltan Clinches Maiden Title 

  • The 10th edition of the Pro Kabaddi League (PKL) concluded with Puneri Paltan emerging as champions for the first time, after a closely contested final against Haryana Steelers. 
  • The final score read 28-25 in favor of Puneri Paltan, with the match taking place on March 1. Pankaj Mohite shone brightly for Paltan, scoring nine raid points, including a crucial super raid that proved to be a game-changer. 

18.Iran Launches ‘Pars 1’ Satellite Into Orbit From Russia 

  • Iran’s venture into space exploration and satellite deployment continues with the launch of the “Pars 1” satellite, facilitated by Russia from the Vostochny Cosmodrome. 
  • This event underscores the technological collaboration between Iran and Russia, occurring against a backdrop of heightened scrutiny and concern from Western nations. 
  • This launch is part of Iran’s broader efforts in space technology, following its claim of launching three satellites into orbit using its own rocket earlier in January. 

19.New Species Of Amazon Anaconda Discovered: Eunectes Akiyama 

  • Researchers in Ecuador’s rainforest have uncovered a new species of anaconda, Eunectes Akiyama, which split from its closest relatives 10 million years ago. 
  • The discovery was made by a team led by Dutch biologist Freek Vonk, who encountered the massive 20-foot-long specimens in the Amazon. 
  • The new species, dubbed the “northern green anaconda,” weighs up to 200 kilograms (441 pounds) and showcases significant genetic divergence from its counterpart. 

20.Google Unveils Genie AI: Revolutionizing Video Game Creation 

  • Google’s DeepMind team introduces “Genie,” a groundbreaking AI platform poised to transform the gaming industry and creative endeavors. 
  • This innovative project signifies a fusion of cutting-edge technology and imaginative potential, offering the capability to craft interactive 2D video games from single image prompts or text descriptions. 
  • It empowers users to create immersive gaming experiences with minimal input. Democratizes programming by utilizing natural language like English for game creation. 

21.Padma Shri Awardee Arun Sharma Breathes His Last At 91 

  • The world of archaeology mourns the loss of one of its most distinguished figures, Padmashree Dr. Arun Kumar Sharma, who passed away at the age of 90 at his residence in Raipur, Chhattisgarh. 
  • Sharma’s career was marked by significant contributions to Indian archaeology, including his pivotal role in the excavation of the Ram Janmabhoomi Ayodhya site. 
  • Dr. Sharma’s 33-year tenure with the ASI was marked by exemplary service, culminating in his retirement as the Superintendent Archaeologist at the ASI Nagpur in 1992 

22.Neolithic Child Burial Site Unearthed In Chengalpattu, Tamil Nadu

  • A groundbreaking archaeological discovery has been made in Chettimedu Pathur village, approximately 77 kilometres from Chennai, Tamil Nadu. 
  • Researchers from the Department of Ancient History and Archaeology at the University of Madras have unearthed a child burial site dating back to the Neolithic period, around 2500 BCE to 3000 BCE. 
  • Located atop a small habitation mound, the site revealed a wealth of artifacts spanning five distinct cultural periods, from the Neolithic to the Medieval period.

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