Current Affairs March 14, 2024

Current Affairs March 14, 2024


Current Affairs March 14, 2024

National News

Launch of PB-SHABD and Revamped Prasar Bharati Websites

  • Anurag Singh Thakur inaugurated PB-SHABD, a comprehensive news-sharing service, at the National Media Centre, New Delhi.
  • PB-SHABD offers daily news feeds in various formats, including video, audio, text, and photos, sourced from Prasar Bharati’s extensive network.
  • The event also marked the launch of revamped websites for DD News and Akashvani News, along with an updated News on Air mobile app.
  • The revamped websites offer a seamless user experience with diverse content sections covering National, International, Education, Health, Business & Economy, Science & Tech, Sports, Environment, and Opinion.
  • This initiative aims to enhance accessibility and engagement with news content across different platforms.

Anurag Singh Thakur, is the current Minister of Sports, Youth Affairs and Minister of Information and Broadcasting 

International News

India and Dominican Republic established Joint Economic and Trade Committee (JETCO)

  • On March 12, 2024, India and the Dominican Republic signed a protocol for the establishment of the Joint Economic and Trade Committee (JETCO) in Santo Domingo.
  • The proposal for this protocol received approval from the Union Cabinet of India on January 24, 2024.
  • The JETCO protocol aims to provide a comprehensive framework for enhancing cooperation in various sectors, including trade, services, and industrial technologies, between India and the Dominican Republic.
  • This initiative signifies a commitment to strengthening bilateral economic ties and promoting mutual prosperity between the two nations.

Dominican Republic:

  • Capital: Santo Domingo
  • Currency: Dominican Peso
  • Official language: Spanish

Numaligarh Refinery Limited (NRL) Opens First Overseas Office in Dhaka, Bangladesh

  • India’s Numaligarh Refinery Limited (NRL) inaugurates its first overseas office in Dhaka, Bangladesh, indicating a commitment to international expansion and strengthening regional ties.
  • The company has designed a pipeline to supply petroleum products to Bangladesh, with a capacity of 1 MMTPA (Million Metric Tonnes Per Annum) of high-speed diesel.
  • The Bangladesh portion of the pipeline has been constructed at a cost exceeding Rs 285 crore, funded by an Indian government grant, showcasing collaborative efforts in energy infrastructure development between the two nations.

Numaligarh Refinery Limited

  • Establishment: NRL was established in 1993 as a joint venture between BPCL, OIL, and the Government of Assam.
  • Location: Situated in Golaghat district of Assam, near Brahmaputra river and Kaziranga National Park.
  • Products: Produces motor spirit, diesel, LPG, ATF, raw petroleum coke, and sulfur.

Banking News

Rise in Share of Private Sector Banks in Total Deposits

  • As of December 2023, the share of private sector banks in total deposits has surged to 34%, a significant increase from 25% recorded at the end of the financial year 2017-18.
  • This growth can be attributed to aggressive interest rate offerings and improved customer relationship management strategies implemented by private banks.
  • In contrast, the share of public sector banks in total deposits has decreased to 59% from 66% at the end of the financial year 2017-18, based on data from the Reserve Bank of India (RBI).
  • The shift in deposit shares reflects changing dynamics in the Indian banking sector, with private banks gaining ground against their public sector counterparts.

Bank of Baroda Launches ‘bob Earth Green Term Deposit Scheme’

  • Bank of Baroda has introduced the bob Earth Green Term Deposit Scheme offering interest rates up to 7.15% p.a. on deposits ranging from Rs. 5,000 to below Rs. 2 Crore.
  • The scheme is designed to mobilize deposits to fund eligible environment-friendly projects and sectors, supporting India’s transition to a green and sustainable economy.
  • This initiative aligns with the bank’s commitment to environmental sustainability and social responsibility, promoting investments in eco-friendly ventures.

Bank of Baroda:

  • Headquarters: Alkapuri, Vadodara
  • Founder: Sayajirao Gaekwad III
  • Founded: 20 July 1908, Vadodara
  • Bank of Baroda/CEO-Devdutt Chand

RBI Imposes Monetary Penalties on Bank of India and Bandhan Bank

  • The Reserve Bank of India (RBI) has levied a monetary penalty of ₹1.40 crore on Bank of India for non-compliance with certain directives issued by the central bank.
  • Additionally, a penalty of ₹29.55 lakh has been imposed on Bandhan Bank for non-compliance with specific directions related to Interest Rate on Deposits.
  • The penalties were imposed following the RBI’s Statutory Inspection for Supervisory Evaluation (ISE) conducted on the banks’ financial positions as of March 31, 2021, and March 31, 2022, which revealed instances of non-compliance.


  • Founded: 1 April 1935, Kolkata
  • Founder: British Raj
  • Governor: Shaktikanta Das, IAS (retd.)

Defence News

Launch of ‘Agray’ and ‘Akshay’: Milestone in Indian Navy’s Shipbuilding Program

  • On 13th March 2024, the Indian Navy achieved a significant milestone with the launch of ‘Agray’ and ‘Akshay’, the 5th and 6th ships of the 08 x ASW (Anti-Submarine Warfare) Shallow Water Craft (SWC) Project.
  • These ships are being constructed by M/S Garden Reach Shipbuilders & Engineers (GRSE) in Kolkata for the Indian Navy.
  • Known as the Arnala class, these ships will replace the Abhay class ASW Corvettes currently in service.
  • The Arnala class ships are designed for Anti-Submarine Warfare operations and are equipped with advanced technologies to enhance the Navy’s capabilities in shallow water regions.

Static take away: The Indian Navy is the maritime branch of the Indian Armed Forces officially established on 26 January 1950.

Agreements News

India and ADB Sign $181 Million Loan Agreement for Infrastructure Development in Ahmedabad Peri-Urban Areas

  • India and the Asian Development Bank (ADB) have signed a $181 million loan agreement aimed at enhancing infrastructure and services in the peri-urban areas surrounding Ahmedabad city in Gujarat.
  • The objective of the loan is to improve physical and social infrastructure in peri-urban areas, fostering economic vibrancy, and positioning them as attractive investment destinations.
  • This collaborative effort underscores the commitment to bolstering infrastructure development and promoting sustainable urban growth in India.

Asian development bank:

  • Headquarters: Mandaluyong, Philippines
  • Founded: 19 December 1966
  • President: Masatsugu Asakawa (from 17 January 2020)

Appointment News

Gyanesh Kumar and Sukhbir Singh Sandhu Appointed as New Election Commissioners

  • Prime Minister Narendra Modi-led three-member committee appoints Gyanesh Kumar and Sukhbir Singh Sandhu as new Election Commissioners.
  • Congress leader Adhir Ranjan Chowdhury announces the decision to the media following the committee’s meeting on March 14, 2024.

Ranks and Report

India Improves Gender Inequality Index Ranking

  • According to the Human Development Report 2023-2024 by UNDP, India has made significant strides in reducing gender inequality.
  • India has climbed 14 positions on the Gender Inequality Index (GII) 2022 compared to the previous year.
  • In the GII 2022, India ranked 108 out of 193 countries, with a score of 0.437, showcasing substantial progress from its 2021 ranking of 122 out of 191 countries with a score of 0.490.

UNDP (United Nations Development Programme)

  • Founded: 22 November 1965, United States
  • Headquarters: New York, New York, United States

Scheme News

PM Modi Inaugurates PM-SURAJ National Portal

  • Prime Minister Narendra Modi inaugurated the ‘Pradhan Mantri Samajik Utthan and Rozgar Adharit Jankalyan’ (PM-SURAJ) national portal during an event organized by the Ministry of Social Justice and Empowerment.
  • The portal reflects the government’s commitment to providing credit support and empowering one lakh entrepreneurs from disadvantaged communities.
  • Under the National Action for Mechanized Sanitation Ecosystem (NAMASTE) program, the Ministry distributed Ayushman health cards and Personal Protective Equipment (PPE) kits to sewer and septic tank workers (Safai Mitras), ensuring their health and safety.

NITI Aayog Launches ‘Vocal for Local’ Initiative

  • NITI Aayog introduced the ‘Vocal for Local’ initiative under its Aspirational Blocks Programme on March 13, 2024, aiming to strengthen local economies and promote grassroots entrepreneurship.
  • Prof. Ramesh Chand, Member of NITI Aayog, unveiled the logo for ‘Aakanksha’ under the ‘Vocal for Local’ initiative, which seeks to consolidate indigenous local products from 500 Aspirational Blocks under the brand ‘Aakanksha’.

NITI aayog:

  • Chairperson: Narendra Modi
  • Founded: 1 January 2015
  • Founder: National Democratic Alliance

Sports News

Union Minister Anurag Thakur Inaugurates KIRTI Talent Hunt Event

  • Union Minister for Youth Affairs and Sports, Anurag Singh Thakur, inaugurates KIRTI (Khelo India Rising Talent Identification) in Chandigarh.
  • KIRTI, a nationwide initiative under the Khelo India mission, aims to identify talented athletes aged 9 to 18 enrolled in schools across India.
  • The program plans to conduct 20 lakh assessments nationwide throughout the year via designated Talent Assessment Centers to unearth promising athletic talent.

Important Days

World Kidney Day 2024: Kidney Health for All

  • World Kidney Day, observed annually on the second Thursday of March, aims to raise awareness about kidney health globally.
  • This year, on March 14th, the focus of the campaign is on “Kidney Health for All – Advancing Equitable Access to Care and Optimal Medication Practice.”
  • The campaign highlights the importance of ensuring equitable access to kidney health care and promoting optimal medication practices to prevent and manage kidney diseases worldwide.

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