Daily Current Affairs and GK | 2 March 2024

By Priyanka Chaudhary | Last Modified: 02 Mar 2024 18:00 PM IST

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Topic: National News

1. Government approved three proposals to set up semiconductor units in India.

  • Two semiconductor units will be established by the Tata Group in Gujarat and Assam.
  • One semiconductor unit will be established by the Murugappa Group-owned CG Power in Gujarat.
  • All three units will begin construction within 100 days. ₹1,26,000 crore will be invested in these three units.
  • These three semiconductor units will generate direct employment of 26,000 people and indirect employment of 1 lakh.
  • In June 2023, the government gave a proposal by American company Micron to set up a plant in Gujarat.
  • Tata Electronics Private Limited (TEPL) plant will be set up in partnership with Taiwan’s Powerchip Semiconductor Manufacturing Corporation (PSMC).
  • It is India's first semiconductor fab unit, which will be set up in Dholera, Gujarat.
  • Tata Semiconductor Assembly and Test Private Limited (TSAT) in Morigaon (Assam) and CG Power’s in Sanand, Gujarat will be the ATMP (assembly, testing, marking, and packaging).

Topic: State News/ Odisha

2. Odisha government decided to establish a State Water Informatics Centre.

  • Chief Minister Naveen Patnaik has approved the establishment of the State Water Informatics Centre.
  • It will provide a comprehensive repository of hydro-meteorological data for the state.
  • It will have a proficient team that will handle water resource management, data handling, and information technology.
  • The SWIC will seamlessly collaborate with the National Water Informatics Centre (NWIC).
  • It will facilitate the exchange of hydro-meteorological data between the Centre and the state government.

Topic: State News/ Uttar Pradesh

3. Under Ayushman Bharat PMJAY, UP has become the first state in the country to issue five crore Ayushman cards.

  • The Uttar Pradesh government has issued 50,017,920 Ayushman cards and benefited 74,382,304 individuals.
  • Under this scheme, a total of 3,716 hospitals in the state are listed.
  • A total of 3,481,252 health claims have been filed under the Ayushman Bharat scheme, out of which 3,275,737 claims have been settled, representing a settlement rate of 92.48% in the state.
  • This achievement is significant and is the result of the continuous support of the National Health Authority and the dedication of the grassroots workers, Panchayat assistants, ANMs, medical officers, ASHAs, and other workers.
  • With this achievement, there has also been a significant increase in the number of patients receiving free treatment every day under this scheme.
  • Earlier, the average admission of patients per day under this scheme was 2,000, which has now increased to about 8,000 per day.

Ayushman Bharat PMJAY

(Source: News on AIR)

Topic: Personality in News

4. Former Canadian Prime Minister Brian Mulroney dies at the age of 84.

  • The Conservative leader, Brian Mulroney, was the 18th Prime Minister of Canadian from 1984 to 1993.
  • Mulroney led Canada through the final days of the Cold War and negotiated a free trade agreement with the United States.
  • Mulroney began his career as a lawyer and business executive before taking over as leader of the Progressive Conservative Party and becoming Prime Minister.
  • In 1983, Mulroney won a parliamentary seat in Nova Scotia and became a leader of the Conservatives and in 1984, he took over as Prime Minister.

Canadian Prime Minister Brian Mulroney

(Source: News on AIR)

Topic: Defence

5. On 1 March, five capital acquisition contracts worth over Rs 39,000 crore were signed by the Defense Ministry.

  • One of the five contracts was with Hindustan Aeronautics Limited for the procurement of Aero-engines for MiG-29 aircraft.
  • This includes two contracts for the purchase of a Close-In Weapon System (CIWS) with Larsen & Toubro Limited and for the purchase of a High-Power Radar (HPR).
  • It also includes two agreements with BrahMos Aerospace Private Limited (BAPL) for the purchase of BrahMos missiles and ship-borne BrahMos system for the Indian Defense Forces.
  • These deals will further strengthen indigenous capabilities, save foreign exchange, and reduce dependence on foreign-origin equipment manufacturers in the future.
  • At a cost of Rs 5,249.72 crore, the contract for RD-33 aero engines for MiG-29 aircraft has been awarded to HAL.
  • The Koraput division of HAL will produce these aero-engines.
  • Under a Transfer of Technology (TOT) license from the Russian OEM, the aero-engines will be manufactured.
  • The program will focus on the indigenization of several high-value critical components, which would help increase the indigenous content of future Repair and Overhaul (ROH) tasks of RD-33 aero-engines.
  • At a cost of Rs 7,668.82 crore, the contract has been signed with Larsen & Toubro Limited for procurement of CIWS.
  • At a cost of Rs 5,700.13 crore, the contract has also been signed with Larsen & Toubro Limited for procurement of HPR.
  • At a cost of Rs 19,518.65 crore, the contract has been signed with BrahMos Aerospace Private Limited (BAPL) for the procurement of BrahMos missiles.

Topic: Art and Culture

6. On 1 March, Mizoram's biggest festival Chapchar Kut celebrated with traditional enthusiasm and joy across the state.

  • On the occasion, thousands of people gathered at the Assam Rifles Ground-Lammual in Aizawl.
  • The festival showcased the traditional and cultural richness of the Mizo community through the performance of songs and cultural dances.
  • This festival is celebrated every year on the first Friday of the month of March.
  • At the beginning of the year, Chapchar Kut is celebrated to thank God after the completion of the most difficult task of jhum cultivation – clearing the forest.
  • Chief Minister Lalduhoma said that the age-old tradition of rendering selfless service to others–“Mizo Tlawmngaihna”–is a cornerstone of Mizo society.
  • Chapchar Kut has been celebrated since ancient times and in the olden days, it was celebrated for days and weeks.

Mizoram's biggest festival Chapchar Kut

(Source: News on AIR)

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Topic: Banking System

7. FIU-IND has imposed a penalty of ₹5.49 cr on Paytm Payments Bank.

  • The Financial Intelligence Unit-India (FIU-IND) has imposed this penalty for money laundering violations under the Prevention of Money Laundering Act.
  • Following the receiving of information from law enforcement agencies regarding a few entities and their network of enterprises involved in various unlawful acts, FIU-IND began an investigation into Paytm Payments Bank Ltd.
  • These unlawful acts included organising and facilitating online gambling.
  • The funds obtained from these unlawful activities were directed and passed through bank accounts these organizations kept with Paytm Payments Bank Ltd.
  • Paytm Payments Bank was instructed by the RBI on January 31 to cease taking deposits or top-ups in any customer accounts, wallets, FASTags, and other devices after February 29.
  • The deadline was later extended to March 15. The allegations involved violations of different norms including KYC.
  • Financial Intelligence Unit – India (FIU-IND):
    • It was set up in November 2004. It is an independent body.
    • It reports directly to the Economic Intelligence Council, which is headed by the Finance Minister.
    • It is responsible for receiving, processing, analyzing and disseminating information relating to suspect financial transactions.

Topic: State News/Bihar

8. PM Modi inaugurated and laid the foundation stone of multiple developmental projects in Bihar at events held in Aurangabad and Begusarai.

  • These development projects are worth over 48,000 crore rupees.
  • He also inaugurated, dedicated and laid the foundation stone of multiple oil and gas sector projects from Barauni in Begusarai.
  • These projects are worth about 1.48 lakh crore rupees.    
  • These oil and gas sector projects are spread across different states like Bihar, Haryana, Andhra Pradesh, Maharashtra, Punjab, and Karnataka.
  • In Aurangabad, the PM inaugurated, dedicated, and laid the foundation stone of various development projects worth over 21,400 crore rupees.
  • He inaugurated and kick-started the work of National Highway projects worth over 18,000 crore rupees.
  • He laid the foundation stone of the six-lane bridge over the Ganga River linking South and North Bihar.
  • This six-lane bridge will be parallel to the existing JP Ganga Setu.
  • The PM dedicated to the nation three railway projects in Bihar.
  • These include doubling of the Pataliputra-Pahleja line and new rail line between Bandhua and Paimar.
  • He inaugurated 12 projects worth over 2190 crore under Namami Gange.
  • These projects include sewerage treatment plants in Patna, Sonepur, Naugachia, and Chapra.
  • He laid the foundation stone of Unity Mall in Patna.
  • He dedicated the revived fertilizer plant of Hindustan Urvarak Rasayan Limited (HURL) at Barauni to the nation.
  • Other inaugurated projects include gauge conversion of the Raghopur-Forbesganj line, doubling of Mukuria -Katihar-Kumedpur line projects for Barauni-Bachwara and Katihar-Jogbani rail lines.
  • He flagged off four trains. These trains include the Danapur-Jogbani Express, Jogbani-Saharsa Express, Sonepur-Vaishali Express, and Jogbani-Siliguri Express.
  • He dedicated to the nation Bharat Pashudhan. It is a digital database project at Begusarai.
  • It will provide a unique 12-digit tag ID to livestock in the country. 29 crore 60 lakh bovines have been already tagged.
  • He also launched an app 1962 (One Nine Six Two) app.
  • It will have data and records of livestock under the Bharat Pashudhan database project.

Topic: Environment and Ecology

9. Cabinet approved the establishment of the International Big Cat Alliance.

  • The establishment of the International Big Cat Alliance (IBCA) with headquarters in India has been approved by the Union Cabinet.
  • It will be established with a support of Rs.150 crore for a period of five years from 2023-24 to 2027-28.
  • PM Modi formally announced the launch of the International Big Cat Alliance on April 9, 2023.
  • International Big Cat Alliance aims to secure of future of big cats including Tiger, Lion, Leopard, Snow Leopard and Cheetah.
  • Conservation partners and scientific organizations working in the field of big cat conservation are part of the International Big Cat Alliance.
  • This alliance will ensure the sustainable use of natural resources and mitigate challenges emanating from climate change.
  • IBCA would help in knowledge sharing, capacity building, networking, finance and resources support, research and technical support.
  • IBCA governance consists of a Members' Assembly, a Standing Committee and a Secretariat with headquarters in India.
  • 16 countries, including Brazil, Nepal, Bangladesh and, Malaysia, have formally joined the big cat alliance.

Topic: International News

10. An alliance for Global Gender Equity and Equality has been launched by India.

  • The logo and website for the Alliance for Global Good – Gender Equity and Equality have been released by Union Minister Smriti Irani.
  • Bill Gates, Co-Chair of the Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation, and Chandrajit Banerjee, Director General, the Confederation of Indian Industry (CII) were also present at the event.
  • The Alliance for Global Good: Gender Equity and Equality was launched at the Davos 2024 summit. It is a significant step in the global pursuit of gender equality.
  • The main aim of the alliance is to consolidate global best practices, foster knowledge exchange, and attract investments in women's health, education, and entrepreneurship.
  • The logo of the alliance symbolizes the essence of equality and equity. It embodies intellect, wisdom, and understanding.
  • It is inspired by Lord Ganesh, who symbolises intellect, wisdom, and understanding.

Global Gender Equity and Equality

(Source: DD News)

Topic: State News/ Uttar Pradesh

11. On March 1, the foundation stone of the HOLI24 was laid by Union Minister Nitin Gadkari in Jaunpur, Uttar Pradesh.

  • This Dharma Path will connect Jaunpur with Ayodhya, Varanasi, and Mirzapur.
  • In this, the government will build a four-lane road from Hauz to Purvanchal University and from Purvanchal University to Shahganj with Rs 3,405 crore.
  • Under National Highway No. 135-A, a four-lane road will be built on the Jaunpur to Akbarpur route.
  • The government will build a 31 km long road in the district from Devkali to Shahganj border of Purvanchal University. At a cost of Rs 1511 crore, this work will be done under Package Two.
  • At a cost of 1,894 crore rupees, the four-lane road will be built in Purvanchal via Sirkoni's Hauz under package one. This 29-kilometer road will pass through 55 villages.

Dharma Path

(Source: News on AIR)

Topic: Defence

12. Very Short-Range Air Defence System flight tests successfully conducted by DRDO.

  • A milestone was achieved with two successful flight tests of the Very Short Range Air Defense System (VSHORADS) missile conducted by the Defense Research and Development Organization (DRDO) on February 28 and 29.
  • These tests were conducted from a ground-based portable launcher off the coast of Odisha at the Integrated Test Range, Chandipur.
  • These were aimed at destroying high-speed unmanned aerial targets under various interception scenarios.
  • VSHORADS is a Man Portable Air Defence System (MANPAD). Research Centre Imarat, Hyderabad in collaboration with other DRDO laboratories and Indian Industry Partners has developed and designed the VSHORADS.
  • The missile incorporates advanced technologies, including a short Reaction Control System (RCS) and integrated avionics, which have demonstrated their effectiveness during these trials.
  • The VSHORADS missile is propelled by a dual-thrust solid motor, which is designed to neutralize low-altitude aerial threats at short ranges.
  • Its design, including the launcher, has been optimized for easy portability.

Very Short-Range Air Defence System flight tests

(Source: DD News)

Topic: Banking System

13. NUCFDC Limited will be inaugurated by Union Home Minister Amit Shah.

  • On 2nd March, Union Home and Cooperation Minister Amit Shah will launch the National Urban Co-operative Finance and Development Corporation Limited.
  • The setting of this umbrella organization will help in achieving the goal of ‘Sahakar se Samriddhi’.
  • The main aim of the initiative is to modernize and strengthen the urban Cooperative banking sector.
  • NUCFDC has received a Certificate of Registration from the Reserve Bank of India to operate as a non-banking finance company.
  • It will act as the apex organization for the urban cooperative banking sector.
  • NUCFDC will provide specialized functions and services to cooperative banks. It will facilitate communication between banks and regulators.

Topic: National Appointments

14. IPS officer Daljit Singh Chaudhary has been appointed as director general of NSG.

  • The central government appointed Daljit Singh Chaudhary as the director general (DG) of the National Security Guard (NSG).
  • Daljit Singh Chaudhary is currently serving as the DG of Sashastra Seema Bal (SSB). He has been given the additional charge of the NSG.
  • He has taken the place of MA Ganapathy, who superannuated on 29 February.
  • An order has been issued by the Home Ministry regarding this.
  • National Security Guard (NSG):
    • The National Security Guard (NSG) is an elite counter-terrorism unit under the Indian Ministry of Home Affairs (MHA).
    • It was founded on 22 September 1986 under the National Security Guard Act, 1986.
    • National Security Guard personnel are referred to as ‘Black Cats’.
    • Its headquarters is in New Delhi.
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