Thursday, April 2, 2015

Starred Articles

Saina Nehwal becomes 1st Indian woman to reach rank 1; wins Indian Open Super series along with Kadambi Srikanth
Sports > Badminton > 28 March
It was a double bonanza for India on Sunday, 30th March, 2015 as both the women's and men's singles titles of the Indian Open super series was won by Indians. Just days after Saina Nehwal created history by becoming the first Indian woman to become the number one women's badminton player, she won the women's singles final of the Indian Open super series by defeating former World Champion Ratchanok Intanon in the final. Likewise, 22 year-old Kadambi Srikanth defeated Danish World No.6 Viktor Axelsen in 55 minutes to clinch the men's single title of the same event.

Australia wins ICC Cricket World Cup '15
Sports > ICC Cricket World Cup 2015 > 30 March
Four-time world cup winners Australia defeated first time finalists New Zealand to win the World Cup for a fifth time at the Melbourne Cricket Ground (MCG) on Sunday, 29th March, 2015. After winning the toss, New Zealand captain Brendon Mccullum elected to bat first. New Zealand lost early wickets and managed to make only 183 before losing all 10 wickets. James Faulkner who picked up two crucial back to back wickets, was adjudged the 'player of the match'. In their reply, the Australians were professional and lost only 3 wickets to get past the New Zealand score of 183. Captain Michael Clarke top scored with a 72 ball 74. Australian pacer Mitchell Stark, who took 22 wickets in the tournament, was adjudged as the player of the tournament. Australia is the only country to have won the World Cup 5 times.
Following the match, Australian Skipper Michael Clarke retired from One-Day Internationals (ODIs) and New Zealand great and one of the best left-arm spinners, Daniel Vettori, also retired from all forms of international cricket. Vettori finished his career with 305 wickets in 295 ODIs and 362 in 113 Tests. Michael Clarke has 7,981 runs from 245 matches with eight centuries and 58 half-centuries.

Bharat Ratna, Padma awardees 2015
Awards > Bharat Ratna, Padma Awards > 31 March
Acclaimed educationist and freedom fighter Madan Mohan Malviya and former Prime Minister Atal Bihari Vajpayee were honoured with the Bharat Ratna, India’s highest civilian award. BJP stalwart LK Advani and Punjab chief minister Parkash Singh Badal were conferred with the Padma Vibhushan, India’s second highest civilian honour. With this, Parkash Singh Badal became the first chief minister to be conferred the Padma Vibhushan. Bill Gates, Melinda Gates, Rajat Sharma, Satpal are some of the prominent names who received Padma Bhushan. Padma Shri was awarded to Prasoon Joshi, Jaya Kumari Chikkala, Nikhil Tandon, Arunima Sinha and N. Prabhakar to name a few.

Gujarat assembly passes anti-terrorism and organised crime Bill
Politics and Government > Gujarat anti-terrorism Bill > 31 March
The Gujarat assembly on Tuesday, 31st March, 2015, passed the controversial Control of Terrorism and Organised Crime Bill (GCTOC), which allows the police to record telephonic conversations and present them as evidence in court. The bill was passed despite stiff opposition from the opposing Congress party. Another provision of the bill provides the acceptance of a confession made in front of a police officer as evidence. The bill is a revised version of the controversial Gujarat Control of Organised Crime (GUJCOC) Bill, which was rejected multiple times in the parliament.

Ex-Nigerian dictator Muhammadu Buhari voted to power
World > Nigeria > 31 March
In the presidential elections held in Nigeria last week, former Major General of the Nigerian army Muhammadu Buhari triumphed over incumbent president Goodluck Jonathan. Muhammadu Buhari rose in power in the year 1983 after outing the then president in a military coup to become the head of state for a period of two years. He unsuccessfully fought the 2003, 2007 and 2011 presidential elections. The 2015 elections have been hailed as the smoothest and most orderly one in Nigeria's history. During his tenure, Jonathan had faced severe criticism regarding his handling of the Boko Haram militant threat in the country.


SBI to minimise stake in its general insurance venture
Banking and Insurance > State Bank of India > 26 March
The State Bank of India (SBI) has decided to reduce its stake in its insurance venture SBI General. The SBI currently holds a 74% stake in the insurance venture, while its foreign partner Insurance Australia Group (IAG) holds a 26% stake. IAG is now all set to increase its stake from 26% to 49%. The move comes after passing of the Insurance Laws Bill, 2015 in the parliament, which seeks to increase foreign direct investment up to 49 % subject to the condition that the management control remains with Indians. The insurer would most likely undergo a name change to signify the revised share-holding pattern.

India stands 37th among 102 countries in Open Government Index
Politics and Government > Government openness > 27 March
In the recent World Justice Project's (WJP) Open Government Index 2015 report, India was ranked at 37th place among 102 countries. The index measures the government openness based on the general public's experiences and perceptions. It uses four dimensions i.e publicised laws and government data, right to information, civic participation and complaint mechanisms to measure government openness. India scored 0.57 in the range of 0 to 1 with 1 indicating greatest openness.

Narendra Modi and Kailash Satyarthi feature in 50 greatest leaders' list compiled by Fortune Magazine
World > 50 greatest leaders’ list > 27 March
Prime Minister Narendra Modi and Nobel laureate Kailash Satyarthi have featured in the list of world's 50 greatest leaders who have contributed to business, government and philanthropy. The list compiled by Fortune magazine features Narendra Modi on the 5th place and Kailash Satyarthi in the 28th position.
Fortune magazine cited Modi's efforts to make India more business-friendly and less regulated, addressing violence against women, improving sanitation and Satyarthi's initiatives against child labour for their inclusion in the list. The ranking topped by Apple CEO Tim Cook, surprisingly left out US President Barack Obama, for the second year in a row.

Major Dhyan Chand Lifetime Achievement Award of Hockey India awarded to Balbir Singh Senior
Awards > Major Dhyan Chand Lifetime Achievement Award > 28 March
Legendary hockey player Balbir Singh Senior received the Major Dhyan Chand Lifetime Achievement Award from Hockey India. A trophy and a cash prize of 30 lakh rupees were given to the awardee. Balbir Singh Senior was the Vice Captain of the Indian Hockey team during Helsinki Olympics and Captain during Melbourne Olympics. He holds a record of most goals (five) made in 1952 Olympic final which still remains unbeaten and also figures in the list of 16 iconic Olympians of all-time.

Germanwings plane crashes in France, 150 killed
World > Germanwings > 28 March
An Airbus operated by Lufthansa's Germanwings budget airline crashed into a mountainside in the French Alps, killing 144 passengers and six crew members. The flight that departed from Spain was supposed to arrive at the German airport. Reports are rife with speculations about the co-pilot, Andreas Lubitz's mental instability and that he had hid his illness from his employers. Lubitz suspected of deliberately crashing the airliner last week had undergone psychotherapy years ago because of suicidal tendencies, a situation experts say is hard for airlines to detect. The matter is being investigated further.

HRD Minister says new National Education Policy to come out by December
Politics and Government > National Education Policy > 29 March
Union Human Resource Development minister Smriti Irani has said that the central government is working on a new National Education Policy (NEP), which will come out by December this year. The announcement was made during a girls’ school convocation ceremony, where the minister mentioned that the new policy would be formed with an aim of 'education for all'. The minister also said that education ministers of all the states will be asked to give their inputs, to help the centre to come out with a holistic policy that can be framed with respect to the country's needs.

BJP becomes largest political party in the world
Politics and government > BJP > 30 March
The Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) replaced the Communist Party of China as the largest political party in the world after its total strength reached 8.80 crore members on Sunday. BJP owes this title to the ambitious membership drive launched by Amit Shah which helped the party hit the 8.80 crore mark, beating the Communist Party of China's 8.60 crore members. The speeding up of the membership drive comes amid hectic meetings and tours by Shah to various states to step up the effort and hit the 10 crore mark by the end of this month.

Lt. Kiran Shekhawat, first woman officer to die in line of duty
India > Military > 31 March
Lt. Kiran Shekhawat, India's first woman officer to die in line of duty, was cremated with full military honors in Kurthala village, Haryana. Lt. Shekhawat’s body was recovered from the fuselage of the ill-fated Dornier Aircraft of the Navy which had crashed during a training sortie off the Goa coast. Commoners and politicians paid their homage to the deceased officer.

Another blogger stabbed to death in Bangladesh
World > Bangladesh > 31 March
One more blogger, Washiqur Rahman, who used to write against religious fundamentalism was stabbed to death in the Bangladesh capital. The attack comes a month after Avijit Roy, a US-based Bangladeshi atheist blogger, was hacked to death in the Muslim-majority Bangladesh. According to the head of the Blogger and Online Activists Network in Bangladesh, Rahman was a progressive free thinker and was against religious fundamentalism. The attacks have posed a threat to the country's independent writers.

AAP sacks founding members Prashant Bhushan, Yogendra Yadav and also its internal Lokpal
Politics and Government > Aam Aadmi Party > 31 March
Two of the founding members of the Aam Aadmi Party (AAP) Prashant Bhushan and Yogendra Yadav were sacked from the party's national executive in the light of bitter differences between the duo and Delhi CM and AAP chief Arvind Kejriwal. The move comes after the duo termed as 'rebels' were removed from the party's political affairs committee, which is AAP's top decision making body. The ousted duo now have three options, first to approach the courts or the Election Commission for justice, second to start a new political party on the same terms and principles they duo had in mind for the AAP, and the third being to not get involved in a political party but start a people's movement taking up issues like public activists. However, the duo has hinted towards the second of the three options. In another turn of events the crisis continued for AAP as it sacked its internal Lokpal, former Indian navy chief L Ramdas, and replaced him with a three member panel.

India sends ships to rescue Indians from Yemen
India > Indians rescued > 31 March
After the failure of the plan to airlift Indians from strife-torn Yemen, the government has decided to take the sea route for rescue operation. Two merchant vessels and two warships have left for Yemen to bring them back. Prime Minister Narendra Modi has briefed King Salman on India’s evacuation plan and requested his support and cooperation. Yemen is witnessing attacks by Shiite militiamen on the president and other state figures.

World's oldest person dies at 117 in Japan
World > Japan > 01 April
A month after celebrating her 117th birthday, the world's oldest person, Misao Okawa, died in Japan. Mrs. Okawa was mother of three, grandmother of four and great-grandmother of six and one of only a handful of people still alive who had been born in the 19th century. On turning 114, she was officially recognised by Guinness World Records as the oldest woman in the globe. Japan, known for the longevity of its people, is also home to the world's oldest man — Sakari Momoi, who celebrated his 112th birthday in February.

Reliance Jio to enable 4G wi-fi at Wankhede stadium for IPL
India > Telecom > 01 April

The Telecom arm of Reliance Industries Limited (RIL), Reliance Jio, is planning to enable 4G wi-fi at the Wankhede stadium for the Indian Premier League (IPL), which starts from the 8th of April, 2015. Reliance has been keen on showcasing its 4G services and has been testing it in different pockets of the country including select Indian Institute of Technology (IIT) campuses. Reliance Jio Infocomm Ltd. (RJIL) is the first Telecom operator to hold pan India unified licence to provide 4G services. 


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