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Current Affairs One - Liner : 28th March 2024

Published on March 28, 2024
  • National:
    • The Telecom Regulatory Authority of India (TRAI) has issued recommendations on the use of Embedded SIM (eSIM) for Machine-to-Machine (M2M) Communications. These recommendations aim to streamline the regulatory landscape of M2M eSIM in India, with a strong emphasis on security through proper Know Your Customer (KYC) procedures.
Current Affairs One - Liner : 28th March 2024
    • Akums Drugs and Pharmaceuticals launched India’s first indigenous Hydroxyurea oral suspension for sickle cell disease on March 16, 2024. The medicine is a cost-effective alternative to imported brands, priced at Rs 600 compared to the imported solution’s Rs 77,000. It will be used for the symptomatic management of sickle cell syndrome.
    • India has applied to the International Seabed Authority (ISA) for rights to explore two areas of the Indian Ocean seabed, the Carlsberg Ridge and the Afanasy-Nikitin Seamount. These regions are rich in deposits of cobalt, nickel, manganese, and copper. The exploration is part of India’s efforts to secure resources for the global green transition.
    • The Indian government has announced revised wage rates for the Mahatma Gandhi National Rural Employment Guarantee Scheme (MGNREGS), effective from April 1. The wage increases range from ₹7 to ₹34. Haryana offers the highest wages at ₹374 per day, while Uttar Pradesh has one of the lowest at ₹237. Several states have reported wage hikes of 8% to 10%.
    • The Supreme Court of India ruled that judges cannot order accused persons to surrender their right to be politically active as a condition for bail. This decision was in response to a petition filed by Siba Shankar Das, a former Mayor, who was given such a condition by the Orissa High Court. The Supreme Court quashed this condition, stating it violated fundamental rights.
    • The Indian Agricultural Research Institute (IARI) has called for legal action against Pakistan for unauthorized cultivation and renaming of its Basmati rice varieties. The varieties in question include Pusa Basmati-1121, Pusa Basmati-6, and PB-1509, which have been renamed and registered in Pakistan as ‘PK 1121 Aromatic’, ‘1121 Kainat’ Basmati, and ‘Kissan Basmati’ respectively. The IARI has also found evidence of newer varieties being grown in Pakistan.
  • International:
    • On March 26, 2024, the Francis Scott Key Bridge in Baltimore collapsed after a container ship named Dali struck it. This resulted in the presumed death of six road construction crew members. The incident has halted ship movement in and out of Baltimore, potentially impacting supply chains and the local economy. The crew of the Dali, all safe, comprised 22 members from India.
  • Banking:
    • On March 26, 2024, Axis Bank introduced a digital service for NRI customers to open US Dollar Fixed Deposits at GIFT City. This service is available through their mobile banking app, ‘Open by Axis Bank’, and offers a paperless solution, eliminating the need for physical documentation.
    • On March 22, 2024, Star Housing Finance and Tata Capital Housing Finance entered into a co-lending partnership. This collaboration is aimed at providing affordable housing finance options to home buyers, particularly those belonging to the economically weaker sections and low-income groups.
    • The Indian government has updated the list of banks authorized to import gold and silver for the fiscal year 2024-25. A total of eleven banks, including HDFC Bank and ICICI Bank, have been given the green light to import both gold and silver. However, three banks - Indian Overseas Bank, Punjab National Bank, and Union Bank of India - have been authorized to import only gold. This authorization is effective from April 1, 2024, and will last until March 31, 2025.
  • Economy:
    • India’s Current Account Deficit (CAD) for Q3 FY2024 has reduced to 1.2% of GDP, or USD 10.5 billion, due to increased services exports and secondary income. The CAD for April-December 2023 also moderated to 1.2% of GDP, with a lower merchandise trade deficit. Positive foreign direct and portfolio investment inflows kept the Balance of Payments in surplus.
  • Reports:
    • The “India TB Report 2024” released by the Union Health Ministry of India reveals that the gap between estimated and actual TB cases in India is narrowing, with only 2.3 lakh cases unaccounted for in 2023. There’s an increasing trend of case reporting from the private sector. The estimated incidence of TB saw a slight increase in 2023 to 27.8 lakh, with mortality rates remaining steady at 3.2 lakh. India met its 2023 target of initiating treatment in 95% of diagnosed patients.
  • Sports:
    • Collins Obuya, the former Kenyan cricketer and captain, retired from international cricket on 24 March 2024. He had a career spanning over two decades, with notable performances in the 2003 Cricket World Cup. His career stats include 104 ODI matches with 2,044 runs and 35 wickets, and 76 T20I matches with 1,794 runs and 25 wickets.
  • Important Days:
    • Earth Hour 2024 is scheduled for Saturday, March 23rd from 8:30 pm to 9:30 pm local time. The theme for this year is “Biggest Hour for Earth”. The aim is to engage individuals worldwide in a symbolic environmental conservation act by turning off non-essential electric lights for one hour and encouraging them to spend the hour doing something positive for the planet.
    • World Piano Day is a global celebration of the piano that takes place on the 88th day of the year, symbolizing the 88 keys on a standard piano keyboard. It was established in 2015 by German pianist Nils Frahm.  In 2024, the theme was about celebrating the marriage of tradition and innovation in piano music. In 2024, World Piano Day fell on Thursday, March 28th.
  • Appointments:
    • On March 27, 2024, Sadanand Vasant Date was appointed as the Director General of the National Investigation Agency (NIA), Rajeev Kumar Sharma as the director General of the Bureau of Police Research & Development (BPR&D), and Piyush Anand as the Director General of the National Disaster Response Force (NDRF) by the Appointments Committee of the Cabinet (ACC).
    • Bassirou Diomaye Faye has been elected as the new President of Senegal. He was elected on 25 March 2024 and will assume office on 2 April 2024. He was the candidate of the opposition coalition “Diomaye President” and is the former general secretary of the now-dissolved PASTEF. He won the 2024 Senegalese presidential election in place of the disqualified candidate Ousmane Sonko.
  • Books:
    • The Animal Husbandry Minister of Kerala, J. Chinchurani, released a book titled “A Compendium on Non-Native Organisms of India” on March 24, 2024. The book, co-authored by K.V. Jayachandran, Sheela S., Jasmin Anand, and Vinod Haridas, provides information about invasive species identified from different parts of Alappuzha, the challenges they pose, and measures to check their spread.
    • “From A Car Shed To The Corner Room & Beyond” is a book written by S. Raman. It is an inspiring life story that has been praised by many influential figures, including N.R. Narayana Murthy, the founder of Infosys, and Dr. D. Subbarao, the former Governor of the Reserve Bank of India.

Questions:

Q.1 Who is the author of the book “From A Car Shed To The Corner Room & Beyond”?
a. S. Raman
b. Dr. D. Subbarao
c. N.R. Narayana Murthy
d. None of the above
Q.2 How many TB cases were unaccounted for in India in 2023 according to the report?
a. 1.5 lakh
b. 2.3 lakh
c. 3.2 lakh
d. 27.8 lakh
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