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01-MAY-2013 President of India Inaugurated the 14 Mega Watt Solar Power Project at Deoghar
The President of India, Pranab Mukherjee inaugurated the 14 mega watt Solar Power project at Deoghar in Jharkhand on 30 April 2013. Along with the inauguration of this solar power project, the President also laid Foundation Stones for Pilgrim Queue Complex and Deoghar Basukinath 44 kilo metre Solar Street Light Project. The initiatives taken in Deoghar will help in the overall growth of Deoghar along with helping in establishing the high standards for pilgrimage management. The initiative was taken by the government authorities and local MPs in order to establish the high technology solar lighting project.

Vice President of India Released a Book Titled an Ardent Patriot Dinesh Goswami
An Ardent Patriot Dinesh Goswami: Compiled and Edited by Kumar Deepak Das Hamid Ansari, the Vice President of India on 30 April 2013 released a book titled An Ardent Patriot Dinesh Goswami, compiled and edited by Kumar Deepak Das, Member of Parliament. The book is compilation of Parliamentary Speeches of veteran parliamentarian from AssamDinesh Goswami. The book comprises of the Parliamentary speeches made by him in the Parliament during his tenure of Rajya Sabha and Lok Sabha from 1971 to 1990. Dinesh Goswami was an eminent political leader from Assam who was a distinguished parliamentarian. Apart from this, he was also a reputed legal luminary, a skilled orator and an ardent champion of public service. His work includes that as the Chairman of the Committee on Electoral reforms in 1990, popularly called the Dinesh Goswami Committee. The Dinesh Goswami Committee played a key role in relevant recommendations on reforms of our electoral system which remain valid even today.

Sharmin Chaudhury sworn in as Bangladesh's First Woman Speaker

Shirin Sharmin Chaudhury of the ruling Awami League was on 30 April 2013 sworn in as Bangladesh's first woman and the youngest speaker. Sharmin Chadhury was administered oath by President of Andhra Pradesh Abdul Hamid. Chaudhry was elected unopposed. Sharmin Chaudhury was the state minister for women and children affairs until her election as the speaker of the Parliament. She is a lawyer by profession. She served as a defence lawyer for Prime Minister Sheikh Hasina while she was undergoing trial on several charges during the past military-backed interim government. The Major Facts related to Sharmin Chaudhry Chowdhury, the International Affairs Secretary of the Awami League, was elected MP from one of the parliamentary seats reserved for women in March 2009. Her father Rafiqullah Chowdhury was a personal secretary and a close associate of Bangladesh's founder and former Prime Minister Sheikh Mujibur Rahman. She did her PhD on human rights and constitutional laws Right to Life from Essex University in the United Kingdom in 2000 on a Commonwealth Scholarship. Chowdhury has a son and a daughter with husband Syed Ishtiaque Hossain who is a pharmaceutical consultant.

Tamil Nadu Government announced 9 cr Rupees Grant to Jeevan for Stem Cell Storage
The Government of Tamil Nadu on 30 April 2013 allotted a grant of 9 crore Rupees to the Public Cord Blood Bank established by the Jeevan Blood Bank and Research Centre in Chennai . The grant was allotted to process and store about 3000 cord blood donations from Tamil Nadu. The allotted money is supposed to be disbursed in a span of over three years. Advantage of the Grant It will be a major boost to public cord blood banking in India; as the area can flourish only with government patronage. It is important here to note that the Umbilical cord blood, which is discarded after childbirth, is one of the richest sources of blood forming stem cells and is being used across the world for over two decades for the treatment of blood cancers, Thalassemia and blood disorders. But for this the HLA (Human Leucocyte Antigen) matching of the donor and the recipient is critical for the successful transplant of stem cells. It usually depends on the background of the patient and donor. In the nonappearance of an Indian inventory, the chances of an Indian finding a

match is less than 10 per cent across the world. If anyone is lucky enough to find a match elsewhere, it will cost the patient close to 20 lakh Rupees to import it.

Bombay Stock Exchange (BSE) launched broad-based Islamic Equity Index

The Bombay Stock Exchange (BSE) on 30 April 2013 launched an Islamic equity index based on the wide-measure S&P BSE 500 index. It will provide a new benchmark for Islamic investors in one of the world's largest stock exchanges.The new index includes the largest 500 companies in the BSE, out of more than 5000 listed. These companies fulfill Islamic finance principles such as bans on investing in alcohol, tobacco and gambling-related businesses. The BSE had launched the countrys first Islamic index in 2010 after tracking the 50 largest and most liquid stocks. India's Islamic banking industry has made slow progress because banking rules need lenders to declare the rates of interest they charge customers. This condition it at odds with Islamic banks which base their products on profit rates instead. In this regard to satisfy the needs of Muslims in India, the industry is trying to develop investment products.

Abdul Hamid was sworn in as Bangladesh President to replace Zillur Rahman

Parliamentary Speaker Abdul Hamid was on 24 April 2013 sworn in as Bangladesh President to replace Zillur Rahman, who died in March 2013. Abdul Hamid is the 20th President of Bangladesh. He will hold the ceremonial position for a five-year term. Hamid was the acting President since 14 March 2013 when Rahman went for medical treatment to Singapore. He is a former lawyer. He was elected to Parliament seven times from the Kishoreganj Constituency. He is a member of the Awami League.

Haryana won the Third Hockey India Senior Women National Championship
Haryana on 30 April 2013 defeated Railways 4-1 to win the third Hockey India Senior Women National Championship at the Major Dhyan Chand Stadium in the Guru Gobind Singh Sports College, Lucknow. Railways scored their opening goal through Amandeep Kaur in the 15th minute. Haryana scored through Udita (34th, 65th min) and Narinder (47th, 49th min) to win the match. Jharkhand defeated Punjab 2-1 to finish third in the championship. Jharkhand scored through Ebha Kerketta and Basanti Kachhap.

Prasanna Kumar Mohanty appointed as Chief Secretary of Andhra Pradesh Government

Prasanna Kumar Mohanty, an IAS officer of the 1979 batch on 1 May 2013 was appointed as Chief Secretary of Andhra Pradesh government. He will be succeeding Minnie Mathew who retired on 1 May 2013 after completing a threemonth extension. A Brief Insight into Prasana Kumar Mohantys Career Prasana Mohanty obtained his Masters and doctorate degrees from Boston University and completed his post-doctorate work in Finance Policy and Urban Affairs from the Harvard. Prasana Kumar Mohanty has worked in various capacities in different parts of the State. He was the collector of Guntur, Commissioner of Visakhapatnam Municipal Corporation, and Commissioner and Special Officer of (erstwhile) Municipal Corporation of Hyderabad. He had also won the Prime Ministers Award for best civic services and it was during his tenure from 1999 to 2001 that Hyderabad got a facelift as it emerged a metropolis. He was Joint Secretary and Mission Director in the Union Urban Affairs Ministry in 2006 and later elevated to become Secretary and Mission Director.

Punjab Government increased Minimum Wages on the Eve of Labours Day

The Punjab government on 1 May 2013 announced to increase the minimum wages of unskilled, semi-skilled and skilled workers with effect from 1 March 2013. Highlights of the revised wages The wages of unskilled labourers like chowkidaar, peon, and helpers have been revised from 5200 to 5695 Rupees per month. The wages of semi-skilled workers have been revised from 5980 to 6475 Rupees per month. The skilled worker like black smith and electrician having five year experience on un-skilled post will get minimum 7372 Rupees per month instead of 6877 Rupees.

Wages of high-skilled like graduate, technical degree holder, truck driver has been revised from 7909 to 8404 Rupees. The wages of category-A staff like post graduate, MBA has been revised from 10370 to 10865 Rupees. Category-B Staff like graduate has been revised from 8700 to 9195 Rupees Category-C staff like under-graduate has been revised from 7200 to 7695 Rupees Category-D staff like matriculate has been revised from 6000 Rupees to 6495 Rupees per month. It is Important here to note that the Punjab Government is all set to build labour sheds and night shelters in different parts of the state for the construction workers with the cost of 10 crore Rupees in the financial year 2013-14.

Reliance Jio Infocomm and Vodafone Joined Consortium to set up UnderSea Cable System
Telecom carriers Reliance Jio Infocomm, Dialog Axiata from Sri Lanka, Vodafone Group of the UK, Omantel from Oman, Etisalat from the UAE and Telekom Malaysia from Malaysia on 30 April 2013 formed a consortium to set up Bay of Bengal Gateway (BBG) submarine cable system to connect Singapore and Malaysia to the Middle East while connecting India (Mumbai and Chennai) and Sri Lanka. The length of the cable system is 8000 kilometres. The concerned parties signed the construction and maintenance agreement(C&MA) and the supply contract for BBG in Kuala Lumpur. The cable system has been designed in such a way so that it could provide upgradable and transmission facilities by having 100 Gbps capability. The cable system is likely to carry commercial traffic by the end of 2014. This new cable system will help end the monopoly of some existing players operating in this region as well as reduce infrastructure cost for the consortium partners. BBG can be considered an extraordinary opportunity for business growth because it will help support current and future high capacity requirements from the neighbouring areas of the region and Internet applications of next generation.

Lifetime ban on Pervez Musharraf for Contesting Elections

The High Court in the northwestern city of Peshawar on 30 April 2013 imposed a lifetime ban on former President Pervez Musharraf from contesting elections. It was the first time a court in Pakistan had declared a citizen ineligible from contesting elections for life. Musharraf returned in March 2013 after nearly four years of self-imposed exile to contest May 11 general election. The court observed that Musharraf abrogated the Constitution twice. The first was when he carried out a coup to oust a democratically elected government.The second time when he declared emergency in 2007 and detained 60 judges. Musharraf had filed nominations from four constituencies namely Chitral, Karachi, Kasur and Islamabad.

Vice President Released a Book Entitled Fida-e-Lucknow -Tales of the City and Its People
Fida-e-Lucknow -Tales of the city and its people by Parveen Talha The Vice President of India, Hamid Ansari released a book entitled Fida-e-Lucknow -Tales of the city and its people on 1 May 2013. The book is authored by Parveen Talha, former Member UPSC. It is important to note that a lot of authors as well as poets have also penned down about Lucknow and its culture. Cultural civilization grew in the city because of its rich tradition and specialty. Fida-e-Lucknow -Tales of the city and its people is the collection of 22 short stories. It peeps into the flavours and textures of life in Lucknow. The book takes its readers through the history of its Ganga-Jamuni culture and the changes which came over the city and its people in the post-Independence period. The book also describes about the story of Lucknows women.

ICOMOS Approved Japans Mount Fuji to Be Declared as the UNESCO World Heritage Site
Mount Fuji, Japan: International Council on Monuments and Sites (ICOMOS) approved Japans Mount Fuji to be declared as the UNESCO World Heritage site. Mount Fuji is the snow-topped vol-

cano in Japan. Formal decision would be taken about its declaration as the world heritage site when the World Heritage Committee of UNESCO will meet in Cambodia in June 2013. About Mount Fuji Japans Mount Fuji is located at 12460 feet and is the highest mountain of Japan. The volcano that erupted around a little more than 300 years ago is situated to south-west of Tokyo. It is visible from Tokyo easily. Mount Fuji is also featured in the historic art work of Japan, which also includes wood blocks prints. It is also said to be a part of traditional Three Holy Mountains, apart from Mount Haku and Mount Tate, both of which lie in Central Japan. International Council on Monuments and Sites International Council on Monuments and Sites (ICOMOS) approved Mount Fuji an appropriate site for registration. ICOMOS evaluates the cultural properties which are nominated to World Heritage List. It is also responsible for submission of the recommendation to UNESCOs annual meetings. At present, there are 16 World Heritage listed Sites in Japan, out of which 12 are cultural and four natural. Recent additions to this list were Buddhism-linked gardens and temples of Hiraizumi, which were recognised as World Heritage Site in 2011.

02-MAY-2013 US Scientists Developed First Smart RFID-Enabled Paper

The scientists at the North Dakota State University developed a process called Laser Enabled Advanced Packaging (Leap) which can help embed the radio frequency identification (RFID) chips on the paper. This process is cheaper and faster as well as it offers a range of applications than the present method. This technique is useful for preventing fraudulent practices. It also gives a new meaning to paper trail. In this process, lasers are used to transfer as well as assemble the chips on the paper. The paper would thus be called a smart paper, which in turn can be used for various purposes such as smart labels, banknotes, tickets and legal documents. These findings would be presented at Institute of Electrical and Electronics Engineers conference on RFID in Orlando, Florida. There are already some RFID-enabled papers in the market but chip are thicker, which leads to either bumpy surface or bulky paper. This means that such a paper would not be printed. The chips are at first, thinned by the plasma etcher. The technology is yet to be patented. It makes use of the laser beam's energy in order to transfer the ultra-thin chips precisely. Antennas are embedded by making use of the same method. Prof Val Marinov, the Head of the project explained that this process was twice faster than the present method of manufacturing. It is also cheaper because of less material used. Therefore, there is an extensive potential for this technology. Prof Val Marinov also explained that the European bank and Bank of Japan had hinted towards their intention for development of this technology, but they did not go for it. Therefore, the technology developed by the US scientists is the first one which demonstrates the functional RFID tag embedded in paper. The team that developed the technology is now looking for the commercial partners of this technology. What is RFID? RFID is expanded as Radio-frequency identification. RFID is primarily the wireless non-contact application of the radio-frequency electromagnetic fields for transferring data. It is used for automatic identification as well as tracking the tags which are attached to the objects. The tags are encompassed with electronically stored information. Some of these tags are powered as well as read at the short ranges through the electromagnetic induction or magnetic fields. Other tags make use of the local power source like battery, but they collect the energy from interrogating EM field.

Union Cabinet approved the Launch of the National Urban Health Mission
The Union Cabinet of India on 1 May 2013 approved the launch of the National Urban Health Mission to reduce rates of infant mortality, maternal mortality and for universal access to reproductive health care.The cost of the National Urban Health Mission for 5 years is 22507 crore rupees and the Central government will share 16955 crore rupees.The mission will be implemented in 779 cities and towns each with the population of more than 50,000 has expected to cover about 7.75

crore people. The Cabinet also gave its nod to a bill which provides for confiscating property illegally acquired by corrupt public servants. The major changes to the Prevention of Corruption Act, 1988 were approved by the Cabinet. A timeframe has also been set for getting sanction of the competent authority to prosecute serving and retired bureaucrats and reasons will have to be specified for giving the nod or refusing it. The Union Cabinet also approved the Empowered Group of Minister's (EGoM)s decision to conduct auction of 839 channels of FM radio stations in 294 cities through e-auction. The decision is part of the amendments in the Policy Guidelines for Phase III expansion of FM Radio broadcasting services through private agencies. The government also approved amendments to a bill that seeks to eradicate manual scavenging. The Prohibition of Employment as Manual Scavengers and their Rehabilitation Bill, 2012 includes provisions for mandatory inclusion of women in vigilance committees at the district, state and national level and a survey to identify manual scavengers. The Union Cabinet also referred the Marriage Laws (Amendment) Bill to a Group of Ministers. The law deals with a woman's right to marital property in case of a divorce.

Deanna Durbin, Hollywood Actress Died at 91 Years

Deanna Durbin, the renowned face of Hollywood in 1930s and early 40s died on 20 April 2013 in the village outside Paris. She was 91 years of age. About Deanna Durbin Deanna Durbin was among the highest paid stars in US in 1947. She retired at the age of just 27 years. She debuted in 1936 MGM short Every Sunday. She appeared with Judy Garland. She was born in Winnipeg, Canada in 1921. She was promoted by the producer Joe Pasternak. Deanna Durbins first movie was Three Smart Girls for the Universal studios. This movie was also nominated for best picture Oscar in 1937. In 1936, she also auditioned for part of Snow White. In 1939, she won Juvenile Academy Awards for her significant contribution to screen, along with her fellow teen stars. Her most notable achievement was that her films success saved the Universal Studios from Bankruptcy in late 1930s. It was estimated that her films accounted for 17 percent of overall revenue of the Universal Studios during that decade. In 1946, Deanna Durbins salary was 323477 US dollar, which made her the second highestpaid woman in America, behind Bette Davis. She retired from the films at the peak of her career in 1949 and moved to a village in France.

Nevada Became First US State to Legalise Online Casino

Nevada, in the month of April 2013, became the first US State that allowed its residents to play online poker for money, legally. Online Poker gained legitimacy in Nevada in February 2013. Other states that will legalise online poker soon in US are Delaware and New Jersey. The Nevada Gaming Control Board issued the 30-day license to enable the websites for competing against each other for the customers. The first legal online poker website to go live in Nevada is Ultimate Poker is the subsidiary of Station Casinos that operate 16 casinos in Las Vegas. US authorities claimed that online gambling can generate billions of dollars. Every year, around 10 million US citizens play online poker. However the sites are all offshore, which means that federal authorities as well as state make no money at all. US had imposed a ban on online gambling in 2006, but the rules could be relaxed now. Rules for playing online poker legally Under Nevada licenses terms, the players should be at least 21 years of age. The players should be the residents of Nevada. In the year 2010, a research conducted by Gambling Commission found out that there were approximately 450000 problem gamblers in UK. They had an average debt of 17500 pound. The first online casino of the world was created 20 years ago by the Microgaming Software Systems, which are based on Isle of Man.

CCS Approved 11000 Crore Rupees Project for Modernisation of Central Paramilitary Forces 8

The Cabinet Committee on Security (CCS) under the Prime Minister of India, Manmohan Singh approved 11000 crore Rupees project on 1 May 2013 for modernisation of central paramilitary forces. These forces include ITBP as well, which is responsible for guarding the Sino-Indian border. The approval will be implemented in five years duration, beginning 2013-14 fiscal year. The approval of the project is followed by altercation along Sino-Indian border in Ladakh. The approval will also benefit Border Security Force (BSF), Central Reserve Police Force (CRPF), Sashastra Seema Bal (SSB), Indo-Tibetan Border Police (ITBP), National Security Guard (NSG), Assam Rifles and Central Industrial Security Force (CISF). Modernisation will make sure that all these forces get better night vision devices, arms, vehicles, patrolling equipment and ammunition along with infrastructural upgrade.
Name of the Force Borde r Security Force (BSF) 1965 Ce ntral Rese rve Police Force (CRPF) Sashastra Se e ma Bal (SSB) Came into e xiste nce as Crown Repre sentative 's Police on 27 July 1939 Establishe d as Spe cial Constituted in Establishe d in 1 Dece mber Role of the Force Guards Indo-Pak and Indo-Bangalade sh borde rs apart from assisting in inte rnal se curity. Guards civil airports as we ll as major installations of India such as ae ro space domain and nuclear domain. Guards Indo-Bhutan and Indo-Ne pal

Service Bureau in May 1963 frontie rs. Indo-Tibe tan Borde r Police (ITBP) National Security Guard (NSG) Assam Rifles Establishe d in 24 Octobe r 1962 Set up in 1984 as a Fede ral Contingency Deployment Force Raised as Cachar Le vy in 1835 and is the olde st Central Para Military Force in India Ce ntral Industrial Se curity Force (CISF) Came into e xiste nce in 1969 De ploye d for anti-naxal ope rations, law and orde r maintenance as we ll as inte rnal se curity. Guards Indo-Myanmar border. It is also de ploye d in counte r-insurge ncy ope rations in Northeast India. Specialist counter-terrorism force . Guards Sino-Indian borde r.

Haryana Clinched the 3rd Hockey India Junior Women National Championship Title
Haryana clinched the 3rd Hockey India Junior Women National Championship title in the final match on 1 May 2013 in Astroturf Hockey Stadium in Ranchi. Haryana registered a 2-1 victory over Madhya Pradesh Hockey Academy. Jharkhand defeated Punjab 6-0 to claim the bronze medal. Madhya Pradesh opened their account with penalty corner in fourth minute by Shyama Tickadam. Haryana leveled this in 35th minute through penalty corner which was converted by Navneet Kaur. Jyoti Guptas scored the final goal in fifth minute of extra time which helped Haryana win the championship. Two semi-final matches were played between Haryana and Jharkhand as well as Punjab and Madhya Pradesh Hockey Academy on 30 April 2013. In the final, Haryana took over Madhya Pradesh Hockey Academy.

Supreme Court of India upheld 51 Percent FDI in Multi-brand Retail

The Supreme Court of India on 1 May 2013 upheld the constitutional validity of Governments decision allowing 51 percent foreign direct Investment in the multi-brand retail sector. A bench of Justices R M Lodha, Madan B Lokur and Kurian Joseph gave the ruling. The bench observed that there was no harm in giving the policy a chance. It saw merit in the policy that it would eliminate middlemen and help provide farmers a better price for their produce. It dismissed the petition filed against the 51 percent FDI in multi-brand retail. As per the court, the policy will affect the lives of only 13.3% of the country's population living in 53 cities.

Ireland Unveiled the Protection of Life during Pregnancy Bill

Irelands government on 1 May 2013 unveiled the Protection of Life during Pregnancy Bill. It

explains when life-saving abortions can be performed. Moreover, its a clarification of rights within the ambit of Current law. The bill mentioned clearly that anyone illegally involved in abortion could face a maximum 14year prison sentence whether he is a doctor or a patient. The bill was unveiled following the death of an Indian dentist Savita Halappanavar in 2012.

Jenita Mary Nongkynrih won ISRO Young Scientists Award for 2013
Jenita Mary Nongkynrih, A young woman scientist from Meghalaya was selected for ISRO Young Scientist Award 2013 for her urban information system project in the North East. The award for Jenita Mary Nongkynrih carries a citation and cash of 50000 rupees. Jenita Mary Nongkynrih is currently working as a scientist at the North Eastern Space Applications Centre (NESAC), Umiam, Nongkynrih.

Dr. Christopher Briggs appointed as the Secretary General of Ramsar Convention

Dr. Christopher Briggs was announced the Secretary General of the Ramsar Convention in third week of April 2013. His appointment to the post was declared by the Standing Committee of the Ramsar Convention on Wetlands during 46th meeting held in Gland, Switzerland from 8-12 April 2013. He is the successor of Tiga Anada, who served the convention for six years. About Dr. Christopher Briggs He has served UN Development Programme (UNDP) He has also served the UN Environment Programme (UNEP) He has also served the UNEP-Global Environment Facility (UNEP-GEF) Bio safety Unit He served GEF Secretariat, and the UNDP for the Latin American and Caribbean region based in Panama About the Ramsar Convention The Convention on Wetlands (Ramsar, Iran, 1971) -- called the Ramsar Convention -- is an intergovernmental treaty that embodies the commitments of its member countries to maintain the ecological character of their Wetlands of International Importance and to plan for the wise use, or sustainable use, of all of the wetlands in their territories.

Delhi Government decided to hike Auto Fares by 25 Percent

The Delhi government on 1 May 2013 decided to hike auto fares by 25 per cent in the national capital. The new rate came into effect from 2 May 2013. Now passengers will have to pay 25 rupees instead of the existing 19 rupees for the first two kilometers and further per kilometer they will have to pay eight rupees in place of the existing 6.5 rupees. The fare of non AC taxi will increase from 11 rupee to 14 rupees per kilometer rate for AC taxis will be 16 rupees a kilometer instead of 13 rupees a kilometer. There is no change in the waiting charges.

China Successfully Launched a Communications Satellite Called Zhongxing11

China, on 2 May 2013, successfully launched a communications satellite called Zhongxing-11 from Xichang Satellite Launch Center in southwest Sichuan province. The satellite was launched into its present orbit from Long March-3B rocket. This marked the 176th launch of Long March series of rockets of China. About Zhongxing-11 Zhongxing-11 has the lift-off mass of approximately 5000 kg as well as design lifetime of more than 15 years. Zhongxing-11 is based on DFH-4 platform and is manufactured by China Academy of Space Technology. It features multiple high power fixed along with mobile beams as well as transponder switching capability. Its application is mainly to provide services for the commercial communications and broadcasting. The satellite is also responsible for meeting needs of digital broadband multimedia, streaming media for clients, Direct-to-Home as well as data transmission for the Asia-Pacific region.


03-MAY-2013 Father Ian Weathrall, the Last British Member of the Church Of Delhi Brotherhood Died
Father Ian Weathrall, who was the last British member of the Church of North Indias Delhi Brotherhood passed away on 30 April 2013. He was 91 years of age. He died because of cancer in Delhi. About Father Ian Weathrall and Delhi Brotherhood Most notable fact about Father Ian Weathrall is that he was the last British member of the Church of North Indias Delhi Brotherhood. He studied the subject of Theology in Britain and came back to India in late 1940s to serve as Anglican priest. He became a part of the Brotherhood (community of priests) in 1951. The Brotherhood was founded in 1877 and made contributions to Delhi. Renowned St. Stephens College of Delhi University as well as St. Stephens Hospital are among many institutions founded by the Brotherhood. Father Ian Weathrall was the head of the Brotherhood and also a member of the Supreme Council of St. Stephens College. He was also a member of governing body of St Stephens Hospital. The Government eventually banned the missionaries that came to India and therefore the British members of the Brotherhood reduced considerably. At present, there are just six members. The Brotherhood is involved in social work, primarily in East Delhi. It provides education to deprived, care for elders as well as help to the leprosy patients. He also served for long at St James Church in Kashmere Gate as well as the Cathedral Church of the Redemption.

IBM Released World's Smallest Stop Motion Film Called a Boy and His Atom
The IBM scientists on 1 May 2013 released the smallest movie of the world called A Boy and His Atom. The movie tracks movement of the atoms which are magnified 100 million times. The movie, A Boy and His Atom, is a story of the character called Atom who in turn befriends the single atom and then follows him on journey of bouncing and dancing which helps in explaining the science behind the data storage. A scientist at IBM Research, Andreas Heinrich explained that positioning, shaping and capturing the atoms in order to create the original motion picture on atomic level was completely first-ofits-kind and precise science. The movie is actually a fun-filled way of sharing the atomic-scale world. How was the smallest movie of the world made? In order to make this movie, the scientists moved the atoms with the help of IBM-invented scanning tunneling microscope. Scanning Tunneling Microscope is the device which helped its inventors get the Nobel Prize as well. This was the first tool which helped the scientists in seeing the world in the form of single atoms. The device weighs two tons and operates at the temperature of -268 degrees Celsius. It magnifies the atomic surface more than 100 million times. With the availability of this device, IBM Research lab is one of those rare places in the world where it is possible to move the atoms with precision of such a level. Guinness Book of World Records certified this movie as the World's Smallest Stop Motion Film. The film made use of the microscope in order to control the super-sharp needle along copper surface in order to attract the atoms as well as molecules and then, in turn, pull them to specified location on any surface. Such a kind of science could help in improvement of computer data storage. This is so because the data creation as well as consumption is getting bigger and therefore, there is a need of making data storage smaller. IBM is now applying this technique for developing new computer architectures as well as alternative ways for storing the data in order to make this movie.

World Press Freedom Day Celebrated Across the World with Safe to Speak Theme
World Press Freedom Day is celebrated across the world on 3 May 2013. The theme for World Press Freedom Day 2013 is Safe to Speak: Securing Freedom of Expression in All Media. This is the 20th anniversary of World Press Freedom Day. This day was proclaimed by the UN General Assembly in December 1993 after recommendations of General Conference of UNESCO. Ever since then, 3 May is observed as the World Press Freedom Day on the anniversary of the


Declaration of Windhoek. World Press Freedom Day is the opportunity to: Celebrate fundamental principles of press freedom Assess state of press freedom all over the world Defend attack on media independence Pay tribute to those journalists who died during dissemination of their duty Freedom of Expression: A fundamental human right under 19 of the Universal Declaration of Human Rights It is worth noticing that Freedom of Expression is the fundamental human right under 19 of the Universal Declaration of Human Rights. In various countries across the world, thousands of publications are suspended, censored, shut down or fined. Various journalists, publishers as well as the editors are attacked, harassed, murdered and detained. In last 10 years, over 600 journalists have been killed and out of these 120 have died in 2012 alone.

Sheikh Salman Elected as the New President of Asian Football Confederation

Sheikh Salman bin Ibrahim al-Khalifa was elected as the new president of Asian Football Confederation on 2 May 2013. He replaced Mohamed Bin Hammam. Bahraini Sheikh Salman won 33 votes out of 46 in Malaysia to beat his rival Yousuf Al Serkal of the United Arab Emirates as well as Worawi Makudi of Thailand. Sheikh Salman claimed the vacant seat on executive committee of FIFA as well, which was held by Bin Hammam. On this seat, Sheikh Salman defeated Qatar World Cup organising chief Hassan Al Thawadi. It is important to note that Bin Hammam was given a lifetime ban in 2011 by FIFA on the basis of allegations that he tried to buy the votes. He eventually retired from football in July 2012 after his suspension was annulled. Sheikh Salman took over last 20 months of term of Bin Hammam as the AFC president. Next elections will be held in January 2015. The position of AFC president gives a person the control of all major football events in Asia.

US Scientists Created Worlds Smallest Flying Robot Called Robo-Fly

US Scientists at the Harvard University created a robot of the size of fly which can perform fast manoeuvres of omnipresent insects. The robot called Robo-Fly is built from the carbon fibre which weighs just a fraction of the gram and also has super-fast electronic muscles that are used to power the wings. The developers of the robot described that the tiny robots like these could be used in various rescue operations. For example, such a kind of the robot could be used for navigating through the tiny spaces in buildings which have collapsed. Dr Kevin Ma of Harvard University as well as his team which was led by Dr Robert Wood described their creation as the world's smallest flying robot. The fly-like agility that this robot encompasses, allows it to evade the fastest human efforts to swat them. This ability came because of precise wing movements. The robot has the ability to perform immediate evasive manoeuvres as well as hover, by constant adjustment of the effect of lift and thrust which acts on the body at extremely high speed. Like any real fly, the flexible and thin wings of the robot can beat around 120 times per second. This high speed of the wings can be achieved with the help of a special substance known as piezoelectric material. This material contracts each time with the application of the voltage to it. The scientists switched on and off the voltage very rapidly and this helped them in making the material behave like tiny muscles which make the flys wings beat very fast. The scientists explained that the primary goal of this research was not to build the useful robot, but understand the flight working of the insects. However, now, with the development of the robot, there could be various uses of the machine. These robots could also be used for the monitoring of the environment by being dispersed into habitat for sensing trace chemicals or certain other factors. Dr Ma also explained that these robots were able to behave like the real insects and could also help in pollination of crops. At present, the model of robo-fly is small, off-board power source. However, in the next step, it would be created as the completely wireless flying robot.

RBI reduced the Repo Rate by 25 Basis Points to 7.25 Percent

The Reserve Bank of India (RBI) on 3 May 2013 reduced the policy repo rate under the liquidity


adjustment facility (LAF) by 25 basis points, from 7.5 per cent to 7.25 per cent with immediate effect as part of its annual monetary policy statement 2013-14. The reverse repo rate under the LAF also stands adjusted to 6.25 per cent. The RBI took this step to boost flagging economic growth. The Marginal Standing Facility (MSF) rate and the Bank Rate, both stand adjusted to 8.25 per cent with immediate effect. The cash reserve ratio (CRR) of scheduled banks has however been retained at 4 per cent of their net demand and time liabilities. In its Monetary Policy Statement the RBI has stated that the balance of risks stemming from the Reserve Bank's assessment of the growth-inflation dynamic yields little space for further monetary easing. Interest rates on home and car loans will ease following RBIs decision to cut key policy rates. The next mid-quarter review of Monetary Policy for 2013-14 will be announced on17 June 2013.

Sarabjit Singh Died in Lahore's Jinnah Hospital in Pakistan

Sarabjit Singh, the Indian national and a death row prisoner in the Lahores Kot Lakhpat Jail died on 2 May 2013 at the Lahore's Jinnah Hospital in Pakistan. He was on the life-support system since 26 April 2013 after being attacked by the inmates in the jail. 49 years old Sarabjit Singh is an Indian national who was born in Bhikhiwind Province of Punjab and had spent 23 years in Pakistani jail, after being convicted of involvement in the serial bomb blasts of 1990 in Lahore and Faisalabad that killed 14 people. He was arrested from Kasur Border for illegal crossing the border in Pakistan in August 1990. In May 2012, his fifth mercy petition was dismissed.

Haryana hiked DA Rate from Existing 72 Percent to 80 Percent

Haryana government on 2 May 2013 announced an increase in rate of dearness allowance (DA) payable to state government employees from 72 percent at present to 80 percent. The revised DA will be given in cash with effect from 1 January 2013. The 8 Percent increase was made in dearness allowance of Haryana government employees on the pattern of Central government employees. The hike in DA will put an annual burden of Rs 420 crore on state exchequer.

Union Government launched Special Vaccination Programme in High-Risk Areas

The Union Government on 2 May 2013 had launched its four-week special immunisation programme in high-risk areas across the country. The vaccination sessions, is planned to be held for a week each in June, July and August 2013. The vaccination Programme is launched in a bid to promote vaccination. The Government is Encouraging state and development partners to focus on vaccines that are provided free of cost under the Universal Immunisation Programme. Despite the fact that full immunisation prevents approximately 4 lakh deaths from vaccine preventable diseases in the under-five category every year, but with an astonishing figure revealed by Government it was found that around 75 lakh children miss childhood vaccinations each year. So, in that sense globally, every fifth child is not immunised. It is important here to note that the first special immunisation week, which took place from April 24-30, was organised in collaboration with Unicef. The government has declared the year 2012-13 as the Year of intensification of routine immunisation. Intensification efforts saw the expansion of the Pentavalent vaccine to six more states, after Tamil Nadu and Kerala.The pentavalent vaccine protects children from Hib pneumonia and Hib meningitis in addition to diphtheria, pertussis, tetanus and Hepatitis B.

Scientists found in Hytholamus the Mechanism Responsible for Ageing

The US team of scientists found the mechanism in the hypothalamus- which is located deep inside the brain- and showed that it is responsible for the ageing process. Scientists carried out a series of experiments to find that they could extend the lives of mice by a fifth, without the problems such as animals suffering from muscle weakness, bone loss or memory problems associated with old age. Scientists discovered that a chemical called NF-kB became more active in the hypothalamus of mice as they reached old age. When they blocked NF-kB, mice lived up to 1100 days, compared with 600 to 1000 days in normal condition. But all the mice died within 900 days, when NF-kB was given to them in abundance.


Further experiment showed that NF-kB reduced levels of a hormone called GnRH, which plays a key role in fertility and the development of sperm and eggs. When the mice were given daily dose of GnRH, it resulted into fresh neurons growing in their brains.

Samsung launched 8-inch Galaxy Note 510 Tablet in India

Samsung, the South Korean electronics company on 3 May 2013 launched an 8-inch tablet, Galaxy Note 510. The launch of the tablet is aimed at increasing its presence in the Indian tablet market. Galaxy Note 510, is priced at 30900 rupees and has 16 GB internal memory that can be expanded through a micro SD card to up to 64 GB. Specification of the Galaxy Note 510 Tablet The 3G-enabled tablet is powered by Android Jelly Bean OS and runs on 1.6 GHz quad-core processor with 2 GB (RAM). Galaxy Note 510 Tablet provides innovative solutions like the multi-window, which splits the portable 20.32 cm screen and allows optimal access to a number of live applications. An integrated application named Awesome Note is introduced in the tablet for the first time which is capable of unlimited note-taking uses including memo, diary and must-remember lists. It also contains Air View and the S Pen needs to drift over the screen to see previews of videos, emails, photos and appointments on S Planner without opening the file or application in full.

CCEA approved Exchange Trade Fund for PSU stocks

The Cabinet Committee on Economic Affairs (CCEA) on 2 May 2013 cleared the government proposal to set up an exchange traded fund backed by a basket of PSU stocks, commonly referred as CPSEETF. The basic idea behind setting up of fund is that among other benefits, PSU divestments could be carried out in a much less disturbing manner for the market and can also incentivize retail investors. An empowered group of ministers would take this forward. The government plans to float such a fund so that, The CPSEETF will comprise a basket of shares of different PSUs which would track an index, but will trade like a stock on the exchange. ICICI Securities is the adviser to the ETF and Goldman Sachs is learnt to be the fund manager. The release on CPSEETF noted that each stock would have a fixed weightage in the basket and the ETF will give discount to investors. It is important here to note that the Selling a mutual fund at a discount to its NAV is a new concept in the Indian market, and would require some rule change by the market regulator SEBI.

CCEA cleared Swedish Furniture Major IKEA's 10500 Crore Investment Proposal
The Cabinet Committee on Economic Affairs (CCEA) on 2 May 2013 cleared Swedish furniture major IKEAs 10500-crore rupees investment proposal in India. It will allow IKEA to establish 25 exclusive stores and food cafes in India.This will be the biggest foreign investment in the retail segment till now. It will also provide an opportunity to Indian small and medium enterprises in a wide range of labour intensive sectors for integrating into global value chain. Moreover, it will also provide a diverse choice for the Indian consumers for a wide range of products. In 2012, the government had relaxed foreign investment rules and regulations which allows 100 percent FDI in single brand retail. The government also had removed some of the restrictive conditions which includes removing the mandatory 30 percent sourcing of goods from Indian small enterprises for single brand retail trading. IKEA has more than 300 stores across the world and an annual revenue of 27.5 billion euros (190000 crore rupees).

Maryland became the First southern US state to Abolish Death Penalty

Maryland, the U.S. state located in the Mid-Atlantic region of the United States, on 2 May 2013 became the first southern US state to abolish the death penalty. The measure on it was signed by Democratic Governor Martin OMalley on 2 May 2013. The person who was attended was former Maryland death row inmate Kirk Bloodsworth. He will be the first person in the country freed from death penalty because of DNA evidence after being convicted in a death penalty case. On the global level, Maryland is the 18th state to abolish the death penalty. The Governor can commute the death sentences of intimates to life without parole. The Governor OMalley has asserted that he will consider them on a case-by-case basis. The states last


execution was in 2005.

04-MAY-2013 Mohsin Hamids Third Book How to Get Filthy Rich in Rising Asia Released
How to Get Filthy Rich in Rising Asia by Mohsin Hamid How to Get Filthy Rich in Rising Asia was released in April 2013. The book is written by a Pakistani writer, Mohsin Hamid. His other books include Moth Smoke (2000) and The Reluctant Fundamentalist (2007). The book is a tale of the man who takes his journey from a poor rural boy to the corporate magnate. The book takes the outline from the self-help business books which are read by youth all across the rising Asia. How to Get Filthy Rich in Rising Asia is a tale of contemporary life amidst crushing upheaval. The book brings out characters that develop a sense of intimacy amidst shattering changes. How to Get Filthy Rich in Rising Asia in published in various languages in different countries. These languages include Arabic, Brazilian Portuguese, Bulgarian, Chinese, Danish, English, French, German, Greek, Hebrew, Hindi, Japanese, Korean, Italian, Malayalam, Marathi, Russian, Spanish and many more. Mohsin Hamids first novel, Moth Smoke reached to the final stage of PEN/Hemingway Award, which is given to best first novel in the US. His second novel, The Reluctant Fundamentalist, became an international bestseller and was shortlisted for Man Booker Prize. This book won various awards which included Anisfield-Wolf Book Award as well as the Asian American Literary Award.

Indian Cinema Completed Exactly 100 Years with the Release of Two Films on 3 May 2013
On 3 May 2013, Indian cinema completed exactly 100 years with the release of two films- Bombay Talkies and Shootout at Wadala. The first Indian feature film, Raja Harishchandra was released on 3 May 1913 and this marks the completion of exact 100 years of the Indian cinema. History of the Indian Cinema Raja Harishchandra was the first Indian feature film which was made by Dada Saheb Phalke in the year 1913. During the first decade of the Indian cinema, i.e., from 1913-1920, various films were made, but they were mostly mythological or religious. In the second decade of the Indian cinema, another genre of cinema was born and film makers started with the comedy or satirical films that dealt with the social issues. Some films of this era were Gun Sundari and Typist Girl (1918) made by ChandulalShah of Bombay. Some of the early satiric comedies of Indian cinema were England Returned (1921) and Barristers Wife, made by DG Ganguly of Calcutta. The first lady of Indian film industry was Devika Rani, Rabindranath Tagore's great-grandniece and her first main role was in Karma (1934). From 1896-1931, a lot of silent films were made, but destroyed. At present, just about ten silent films are preserved by National film Archives, Pune. The first ever talkie film that was shown in India was Melody of Love (1929). Indias first talkie film was Alam Ara, made by Ardeshir Irani. Alam Ara had 12 songs in all and it was released first in Bombay. Colour was introduced in the Indian films in 50s. The first coloured Indian film was Jhansi ki Rani (1953), which was made by Sohrab Modi. In 1950s, the biggest filmmakers were Guru Dutt and Raj Kapoor. Renowned Raj Kapoor hits included Bobby, Mera Naam Joker, Awara, Shree 420, Prem Rog and Ram Teri Ganga Maili. The biggest grosser of Indian cinema during 50s were Jhanak Jhanak Payal Baaje (1955) of V. Shantaram and Mother India (1957) of Mehboob Khan. In 1960s, emergence of super stars was seen. Some of the biggest superstars of 1960s were Rajesh Khanna, Shashi Kapoor, Shammi Kapoor and Jeetendra. The trend of shooting at the foreign locations was started by Raj kapoor. Sangam (1964) was among early films shot at foreign location. In 1970s, another superstar, Amitabh Bachchan was introduced to the screen. During 1970s, violence was the central theme of the Indian cinema. The films of 80s were a blend of romance, revenge, dance and music. Disco entered India in 80s through Mithun Chakravartys Disco Dancer. The notable development in 1990s was increased shooting at the foreign locations.


The 100 crore club Indian cinema has now become one of the largest producers of movies in the world. In 2012, around 1500 films were produced in India. The audiences of Indian films have been expanding continuously. The audiences do not just remain confined to India, but all over world, especially South Asia. From first feature film in 1913, Indian films have risen to the 100-crore club. It includes the earning of the films to 100-crore Rupees or 18 million US dollar, after exclusion of the entertainment tax. Till February 2013, overall 19 Indian films made their entry into the 100-crore club. The first film in Indian cinema that made it to the 100-crore club was Ghajini (2008). Salman Khan is the actor who gave maximum films (5) to the 100-crore club. Some of the films that made it to the 100-crore club include Ghajini (2008), 3 Idiots (2009), Dabangg (2010), Golmaal 3 (2010), Ready (2011), Singham (2011), Bodyguard (2011), Ra.One (2011), Don 2 (2011), Agneepath (2012), Housefull 2 (2012), Rowdy Rathore (2012), Bol Bachchan (2012), Ek Tha Tiger (2012), Barfi! (2012), Son of Sardar (2012) and Jab Tak Hai Jaan (2012).

Union Government envisaged over 12 billion Dollars Investment in Aviation

Civil aviation minister Ajit Singh on 3 May 2013 asserted that the government envisages investment of 12.1 billion dollars in the Aviation sector in the 12th plan period (2012-2016). The rapidly expanding air transport network and opening up of infrastructure to the private sector have fuelled the growth of air traffic in India. Out of the investment of 12.1 billion dollars in the airports sector during the 12th Plan period, 9.3 billion Dollars is expected to come from the private sector. Facts to be remembered The Union government had taken several steps in the regulatory framework for making the aviation sector grow despite the challenges facing domestic aviation industry, reeling under mounting losses and rising debt burdens. The aircraft acquisition committee has been abolished to liberalise the acquisition of aircraft by the scheduled, non-scheduled airlines, flying institutes and for private use, which will give momentum to the growth and expansion of airlines in India. The Indian airport system is balanced to handle 336 million domestic and 85 million international passengers by 2020, making India the third largest aviation market.

Japan Concluded a Deal with UAE for Transferring the Nuclear Power Technology
Japan on 2 May 2013 concluded a deal with the United Arab Emirates for transferring the nuclear power technology. It is the first transfer of the nuclear power technology since 2011 Fukushima nuclear accident. Japanese Prime Minister Shinzo Abe visited the Persian Gulf state on the third leg of a weeklong overseas trip. Shinzo Abe met UAE Vice President and Prime Minister Sheikh Mohammed bin Rashid Al Maktoum on 2 May 2013 in order to conclude the nuclear deal. The nuclear deal was concluded with an agreement to promote bilateral investments and economic exchanges. Shinzo Abe also explained about Japans plan for holding the ministerial-level strategic talks on a regular basis with six Gulf Arab states, known as the Gulf Cooperation Council.

A Young Indian Biologist, Aparajita Datta Honoured With the Whitley Award 2013
A young Indian biologist, Dr. Aparajita Datta was honoured with the Whitley award, also known as Green Oscar, in London on 2 May 2013. Aparajita Datta, the Indian wildlife biologist was conferred with the award by Princess Anne, daughter of Queen Elizabeth, at the Royal Geographical Society in London for her efforts in order to save the endangered hornbills in Eastern Himalayas. Aparajita Datta is the head of the program for conservation of the hornbills in dense tropical forests of Arunachal Pradesh, at Nature Conservation Foundation. The tropical forests of Arunachal Pradesh are an abode to five hornbill species. Hornbills are the brightly coloured and curved-beak birds which are catalyst of seed dispersal; these birds remain endangered for the beats as well as feathers by a tribal group, known as Lisu. Aparajita Datta set up the community-based conservation program along with tribal hunters in order to protect hornbills. The focus of the program was to bring down the poaching activities.


Schools were started by her and the team in order to build the river embankments for checking soil erosion. The team of Aparajita Datta also focused on marketing the handicrafts of Lisu as well as development of the nature tourism, which would in turn facilitate Lisu with better financial gains than poaching. The Whitley awards are given every year in order to honour exceptional individuals for the efforts in conservation of nature in the developing countries. Aparajit Datta won the award along with eighth other conservationists who belonged to different countries. They shared the prize money worth 295000 pounds.

US Cargo Plane Crashed after Taking off from Manas Airbase in Kyrgyzstan
US Cargo Plane KC-135 Stratotanker crashed near Chaldovar village on 3 May 2013 after taking off from an airbase in Kyrgyzstan. It crashed at around 15:00 local time. The tanker aircraft took off the flight from US Manas Airbase in the capital city Bishkek. The Cargo Plane was carrying fuel when it crashed after disappearing off from the radars. Manas Airbase is used by US to maintain its operations in Afghanistan. Like ferry troops into the country, refuel warplanes and evacuate wounded soldiers. Earlier on 29 April 2013 a Civilian Cargo Plane Boeing 747 crashed at Bagram Airbase in Afghanistan. In this incident, seven crew members of the plane died on-board.

Camarillo Springs Wildfire Broke Out In California; Spread Over 18000 Acres
Camarillo Springs Wildfire broke on 2 May 2013 near Camarillo in California. Six huge wildfires in all broke in California, which tripled in size since 3 May 2013. Over 3000 fire fighters struggle with the blazes in California. Among these wildfires, one of the fiercest fire compelled shutting down Pacific Coast Highway for second time, with 30-mile stretch off-limits. Camarillo Springs Wildfire is spread over the area of 18000 acres. The wildfires, also known as Springs Fire reached north-west of Los Angeles, thereby posing a major threat to various homes as well. Fire crews in America have already dealt with 680 wildfires in 2013. This Springs Fire has already damaged over 12 homes and there are more than 4000 other homes at risk. Weather change affecting Springs Fire Change in wind direction is also affecting the wildfire because the wind fanned the fire through coastal wilderness to the beach. The fire is fanned by dry Santa Ana winds. These winds are occurring late in 2013. It is the strange weather pattern and is also affecting the firemen dealing with the wildfire. However, the National Weather Service predicted that calmer ocean air might raise humidity level which would help in fighting the fire. Other fires in the recent past in California McNally Fire in 2002 spread over 150700 acres was the largest fire in Sequoia NF history. In 2003, Old Fire broke out over an area of 91281 acres. Cedar Fire in 2003, spread over an area of 280278 acres was the largest recorded fire in the history of California. September 2005 California wildfires broke out over an area of 17000 acres. Esperanza Fire broke out in 2006 over 40200 acres of area. In 2007, Angora Fire broke out in California over 3500 acres of area. In 2007, Zaca Fire broke out in California over 240207 acres of area. It was the second largest fire recorded in the history of California. California wildfires of October 2007 were a series of wildfires over 500000 acres of area. In 2008, summer 2008 California wildfires broke out in Northern California. It was spread over 1557293 acres of area. In 2009, Station Fire broke out in California. It was spread over 157220 acres of area. It is the 10th largest fire in the history of the state. In 2012, Ponderosa Fire broke in California. It was spread over 28098 acres of area and destroyed 52 residences and 81 outbuildings apart from damaging 1 residence and 5 outbuildings.

New Gas Reserve discovered in Southern Sindh Province of Pakistan

Pakistan in the Month of April had discovered a new gas reserve in southern Sindh province that is supposed to help in reduction of acute gas shortages for industry and transport. The Discovery was made by the Italian energy company ENI with joint venture partners Pakistan Petroleum Limited and Kuwait Foreign Petroleum Exploration Company in the Kirthar Fold Belt region 270 kilometres (170 miles) north of Karachi. It was found during the production testing that the gas is flowing at 33 million cubic feet per day


highlighting an excellent potential for the future for energy needs of the country. It is important here to note that the under an early production scheme, gas supply from the new reserve would be possible within three years. The discovery of new oil and gas reservoirs is of imperative importance to cope with the prevailing energy shortage in Pakistan. One of the largest oil producers, ENI is under existence in Pakistan since 2000 and is the country's largest producer, with an average production of 54800 barrels of oil equivalent per day in 2011. Pakistan has a widespread energy crisis for years which is characterized by frequent blackouts, which has stultified the economy.

Harper Lee, Author of To Kill a Mockingbird Sued a Literary Agent over Copyright Issue
Harper Lee, 87, the author of To Kill A Mockingbird sued a literary agent, Samuel Pinkus on the grounds that Pinkus tricked her into assigning the copyright of the book which also won the Pulitzer Prize. To Kill A Mockingbird is a classic book published in 1960. Over 30 million copies of this book were sold. This is the only book published by Harper Lee who lives in Monroeville, Alabama. In the lawsuit, Harper Lee bid the court to assign all rights of this book owned by Samuel Pinkus to the author. She also bid the court to return commission that Pinkus took from 2007 onwards. To Kill A Mockingbird is the tale of a lawyer that defends a black man who was accused of raping the white woman.

Foodgrains Output for 2013 Exceeded its Target

The Union Government of India on 3 May 2013 revised the production estimates of the foodgrains upwards by 5.22 million tonnes for 2012-13, over earlier expectation of 254.24 million tonnes due to the higher output of wheat, rice and coarse cereals. With this revision the total cereal output estimation has gone up to 255.36 million tonnes. The wheat and rice production pegged at 93.62 million tonnes and 104.22 million tonnes respectively. The earlier estimate set for the foodgrains for the year was 254.24 million tonnes. The third advance estimate that was officially released on 3 May 2013 estimated that the total foodgrain production for the year will be lower by 3.96 million tonnes from the previous year 2011-12 ecord production of 259.24 million tonnes. As the total output for wheat and rice in 2011-12 were 94.98 million tonnes and 105.31 million tonnes respectively. While for 2012-13 it is estimated to be 93.62 million tonnes and 104.22 million tonnes respectively. States that lacked in Production due to Environmental Issues Delayed monsoon and drought in different parts of states like Maharashtra, Gujarat, Karnataka, Andhra Pradesh, Tamil Nadu and Rajasthan had an impact on the production of pulses and coarse cereal during Kharif season.

AITA Recommended Somdev Devvarman for Rajiv Gandhi Khel Ratna Award 2013
Somdev Devvarman, the winner of two gold medals at Asian Games in Guangzhou as well as singles gold medal in Commonwealth Games in India was recommended for Rajiv Gandhi Khel Ratna award 2013 by All India Tennis Association (AITA). Somdev Devvarman had formed Indian Tennis Players Association (ITPA) along with Mahesh Bhupati and Leander Peas. Somdev Devvarman played a very important role in placing India at the World Group in Davis Cup. The Davis Cup coach Zeeshan Ali, on the other hand was recommended for Arjuna award, apart from Rushmi Chakravarthi, a womens tennis player of India. Nandan Bals name was recommended for Dronacharya award. For the award of Dhyan Chand life time achievement, Vijay Amritraj was recommended.

IUCN removed Critically Endangered Syzygium Travncoricum from Red List

The International Union for Conservation of Nature (IUCN) in the first week of May 2013 removed the critically endangered Syzygium Travncoricum (locally known as kulavetti or vadhamkolli) tree endemic to Kerala from its red list. Kerela Forest Research Institute (KFRI) conducted a field study in wake of the IUCN classification and suggested that the tree can now be moved to the endangered list.


The tree entered the critically endangered list of IUCN in 1998 on the basis of the Conservation Assessment Management Plan (CAMP) workshop conducted under the Biodiversity Conservation Prioritisation Project India. IUCN classified the Syzygium Travncoricum under the critically endangered Red List after the camp study discovered that due to habitat destruction (the prime cause) the estimated population of the tree went below 200. Maximum of the last trees of the Syzygium Travncoricum group were seen in Southern Part of the state raising concerns of the environmentalist about the tree.

Subhash Kumar appointed as the New Chief Secretary of Uttarakhand

Subhash Kumar, an IAS Officer from 1977 batch on 3 May 2013 took became the Chief Secretary of Uttaakhand for second time. He has succeeded Alok Kumar Jain in the office. His first term in the office was from September 2010 to May 2012. Before being appointed in the office for the second time, Subhash Kumar was the Chairman of the Uttarakhand Jal Vidyut Nigam Ltd (UJVNL).

India granted Consular Access to Pakistan on Daily Basis

India on 4 May 2013 granted consular access on daily basis to Pakistan officials to visit Sanaullah Ranjay, who was injured in a fight with another inmate in Jammu jail and was admitted to a hospital in Chandigarh. It is worth mentioning here that Earlier, a team of Pakistan High Commission officials had met Sanaullah at PGI Chandigarh. As per the Ministry of External Affairs, with the grant of Consular Access, the Pakistan officials can visit Sanaullah once in a day. They will also be briefed twice a day on the condition of the prisoner. About Sanaullah Ranjay Sanaullah who is a resident of Sialkot in Pakistan was injured during a brawl with another inmate in Jammu jail where he was serving life term after being convicted under TADA provisions. He was arrested in 1999. Sanaullah without any delay was shifted from high-security Kot Balwal jail to Government Medical College Hospital and later rushed to PGIMR in Chandigarh in an air ambulance after he was found critical. As per the Pakistan government the brawl between Sanaullah and other jail inmates is an obvious retaliation to the death of Indian prisoner Sarabjit Singh in a Lahore hospital on 2 May 2013. Sarabjit Singh had been attacked by fellow inmates in Kot Lakhpat Jail on 26 April and succumbed to his injuries six days later. It is being said that Sanaullah is a victim of a direct assault coming in the wake of the death of Sarabjit Singh.

Zulfiqar Ali prosecutor in 26/11 Mumbai Attacks and Benazir Assassination Killed
Chaudhry Zulfiqar Ali, a senior government prosecutor in Pakistan who was handling two major cases of Mumbai Terror Attacks of 2008 and assassination of the former Prime Minister of Pakistan, Benazir Bhutto of 2007 was gunned down by unidentified gunmen on 3 May 2013 in the capital city Lahore. Zulfiqar Ali was gunned down on his way to Rawalpindi, while he was proceeding ahead for a hearing in Benazir Bhutto assassination case. He was shot on his head, shoulder and chest during the attack. Overview Chaudhry Zulfiqar Ali was the prosecutor of the two high profile cases in the Court of Pakistan namely, 26/11 Mumbai Attacks and Benazir Bhutto Assassination. Thus the attacks can be seen by linking the two major cases behind his murder. Zulfiqar was a highly competent prosecutor of Pakistan and had a huge experience of handling such high-profile cases. Earlier, the ex-military ruler Parvez Musharraf returned back to the country on 24 March 2013 after a long self-imposed exile of four years to contest elections. On his return to the country he was placed under a two-week house arrest by the Federal Investigation Agency in Pakistan over the charges of conspiring to murder Bhutto. Thus the killing of Zulfiqar Ali can be seen linked with some or the other incidences that followed as few days back he asked the government to increase his security.


05-MAY-2013 Andhra State Government set up State Security Commission

Andhra Pradesh State Government on 4 May 2013 set up the State Security Commission under the chairmanship of the state Home Minister. The Six-Member Commission has been set up following the Supreme Courts directions for efficient, transparent and accountable performance of police system. Chief Secretary to the state Government, Principle Secretary in Home department, Law Secretary and a retired High Court Judge will be members of the commission. The Director General of Police will be the Convener and Secretary of the commission. The commission will advice the state Government on broad policy guidelines pertaining to effective policing and will assist it in identifying organizational goals for preventive tasks. It will also recommend the Government on strategic and perspective plans for police.

The 17th Session of the India-Iran Joint Commission was held in Tehran
The 17th Session of the India-Iran Joint Commission was held in Tehran on 4 May 2013. The Session was co-chaired by Ali Akbar Salehi, Foreign Minister of Islamic Republic of Iran and by Salman Khurshid, External Affairs Minister of India. India and Iran discussed bilateral and regional issues of mutual interest. They discussed Indian participation in Chahbahar Port project which will provide connectivity with Afghanistan and will give an impetus to Afghanistan's economic development. They also discussed the developing situation in Afghanistan and agreed to remain in regular contact. They reaffirmed their support to the sovereignty and territorial integrity of Afghanistan. The two sides also reiterated the importance of greater connectivity between Russia, Central and South Asia through the International North South Transport Corridor(INSTC). India and Iran reiterated importance of enhancing cooperation in expanding trade and banking relations. The two sides agreed to study the prospects of joint investment in both countries. The two sides, while noting their capabilities in the industrial sector, agreed to diversify their cooperation in this regard. On developments in Syria, the two nations strongly expressed deep concern on the continuing and unabated violence and called upon all sides in Syria to abjure violence and resolve all issues peacefully through discussions taking in to account the aspirations of people of Syria. In this regard, they supported the Geneva Communiqu which includes the 6-Point Plan of Kofi Annan and welcomed the efforts of Joint Special Envoy Lakhdar Brahimi. Salman Khurshid also inaugurated the Indian Cultural Centre in Tehran on 3 May 2013. During the visit, India and Iran also signed the following Memorandum of Understanding (MoUs): MOU between Institute of Standards and Industrial Research of Islamic Republic of Iran (ISIRI) and Bureau of Indian Standards (BIS). MOU between the Foreign Service Institute, Ministry of External Affairs, Republic of India and School of International Relations,Ministry of Foreign Affairs, Islamic Republic of Iran. MOU between the Government of Republic of India and the Government of Islamic Republic of Iran on cooperation in the field of water resources management.

Indias Shuttler PV Sindhu won Malaysia Badminton Grand Prix Title

India's rising shuttler PV Sindhu on 4 May 2013 won her maiden Grand Prix Gold title winning Malaysia Open women's final. In a thrilling clash in Kuala Lumpur this afternoon, top seed Sindhu got her act together in time and defeated lower seed, Gu Juan of Singapore, 21-17, 17-21, 21-19, with an exceptional racket display. She hit as many as 17 smash winners compared to just nine by the Singaporean girl. With this, the World Number 13 Sindhu has become the second Indian girl to have won the Grand Prix Gold competition, after India's shuttle queen and London Olympics bronze medalist, Saina Nehwal achieved the feat in 2006. PV Sindhu was the only Indian who had made it to the final stage of this tournament. Saina Nehwal did not take part in the tournament.

iCED Inaugurated by the Vice President Hamid Ansari in Jaipur

The International Centre for Environment Audit and Sustainable Development (iCED) was inaugurated by Vice President Hamid Ansari in Jaipur on 5 May 2013. The iCED was set up by the Comptroller and Auditor General (CAG). The centre will try to improve accountability and governance in the field of environment and sustainable development. The centres objective is to utilize Indias expertise in conducting over a 100 environment audits in the past twenty years to offer extensive training and an international forum for experience


sharing in this field. iCED is also the Global Training Facility for The International Organization of Supreme Audit Institutions, an organisation of Supreme Audit Institutions at global level. The iCED facility was looked on as a green building and several features were added in design and construction to minimise the buildings carbon footprints. The Energy Conservation Building Code 2006 rules are in force for the buildings energy and water efficiency, site selection, material usage during construction and indoor environment quality.

British Territories Signed Deal on sharing Tax Information

Bermuda and other British overseas territories on 1 May 2013 signed deals with financial centres on sharing tax information. The similar recent deals were struck with Jersey, Guernsey and the Isle of Man. Other British overseas territories are namely the British Virgin Islands, the Cayman Islands, Anguilla, Montserrat and the Turks and Caicos Islands. The move aims to track down banking clients who escape paying taxes by not revealing their money overseas. It comes in the midst of an international operation against tax evasion and the use of tax havens. As per the deal, the bank account details, such as names, addresses, dates of birth, account numbers, account balances and payment details will be passed on. The data will be shared with both the UK tax authorities and those in France, Germany, Italy and Spain.

First Global Model developed to analyse the Routes of Marine Species

Scientists developed the first global model that analyses the routes taken by marine invasive species. They examined the movements of cargo ships across the world to detect the hot spots where these aquatic aliens could thrive. Marine species wreak havoc in new locations causing the extinction of natives. A well-documented boom has been observed in global shipping over the last 20 years and this has resulted into growing numbers of species moving via ballast tanks. The ports such as San Francisco and Chesapeake Bay have informed about several exotic new species arriving every year. Economic data indicates that marine invaders can have effects that last for decades. Therefore, scientists came out with a model that can curb these marine species. They procured detailed logs from nearly three million voyages that happened in 2007 and 2008.

Union Minister of Tourism Announced Kashmir Festival 2013 for Tourism Promotion in Kashmir
The Union Minister of Tourism K. Chiranjeevi on 4 May 2013 announced major initiative for the promotion of tourism in Kashmir Valley, in the form of Kashmir Festival 2013 which will be held for a fortnight from 13 May 2013 to 29 May 2013. The festival will be held at different places in Jammu & Kashmir. Major features of the Kashmir Festival 2013 The Union Minister of Tourism announced that financial support will be provided for the Kashmir Festival 2013. The festival will take place at various places such as Sonmarg, Lolab Valley, Gulmarg, Doodhpathri, Manasbal, Yousmarg, Pahalgam and Srinagar. The festival will involve various activities such as Horse Races, Swimming Competition, Painting, Para Gliding, River Rafting, Canoeing, Cycle Races and Shikara Races. The Kashmir Festival 2013 will put forward culture of Jammu & Kashmir through performances by the cultural troupes of the State. In order to make the festival a huge success, the Ministry of Tourism also planned to coordinate with the other ministries such as Ministry of Home Affairs, Ministry of Civil Aviation for outlining the concessional fares / tour package, Ministry of Culture for organizing cultural events through different cultural troupes and Ministry of Youth Affairs and Sports for undertaking sports activities such as Boat Race and other adventure sports like paragliding, horse race etc. The local service providers like guest house owners such as Boats of Kashmir Division as well as hoteliers have started offering 20-30 percent discounts for the tourists as well as tour packages for the festival.

Three Chinese Ships Sailed Into Disputed Waters of Japan-Controlled Senkaku Islands
Three Government ships of China on 5 May 2013 entered into waters of Senkaku islands, which


are disputed and controlled by Tokyo. The surveillance ships of China sailed 12-nautical-mile zone off the Senkaku islands, also known as Diaoyu by China. The government ships of China have sailed into five islands in recent past. This has led to diplomatic disputes with Japan. In April 2012, eight vessels of the Chinese Government had entered in the disputed waters. The disputed Senkaku islands Senkaku islands, which are also called Diaoyu Islands in China or Pinnacle Islands, are basically the group of uninhabited islands. These islands are under the control of Japan in East China Sea. These islands are located in the east of Mainland China, northeast of Taiwan, west of Okinawa Island as well as north of the southwestern end of Ryukyu Islands. There is terrestrial sovereignty over Senkaku islands as well as maritime boundaries around these islands are disputed between China, Taiwan and Japan. China and Taiwan claim that Senkaku islands have remained a part of China since 1534. However, in 1894-1895, Japan got the control of the islands during first Sino-Japanese War and the Treaty of Shimonoseki was signed.

06-MAY-2013 Recent Trends in Material Flows and Resource Productivity in Asia and Pacific
UN Environment Programme (UNEP) report Recent Trends in Material Flows and Resource Productivity in Asia and the Pacific 2013 released on 24 April 2013 reported that Asia Pacific has surpassed the rest of the world in material consumption and will continue to dominate the world material flow. The findings and conclusions of the report is based on an updated material flows database which presents data up to 2008, and the onset of the Global Financial Crisis (GFC). As per the findings of the report, the trade balance of Asia Pacific indicates that the current rate of exploitation of the resource base is not sufficient to fulfill the ever-growing demands of the fastgrowing economies and the changing lifestyles. The report indicated that from 1970 to 2008, the consumption of construction minerals in the region increased 13.4 times. Similarly metal ores and industrial mineral consumption increased 8.6 times. Biomass and fossil fuels have also seen an increase of 2.7 and 5.4 times respectively. The report indicates that at such a pace of development the area will have to depend upon imports. The material intensity of the region consumption of materials per dollar Gross Domestic Product (GDP) is an area of serious concern. The development of the region has increased pressures over the environment by exceeding the rapid growth of the region. At present the material intensity of the Asia-Pacific is three times the rest of the world. The current rate of consumption is also having a negative impact on the environment. From 1970 and 2008, the material consumption of the area has gone up to 37.5 billion tonnes from 6.2 billion tonnes. In all these years, the region has grown at a rate of 4.8 percent. By 2008 in the record of consumption, China accounts for 60 percent and India accounts for 14 percent of the total regional domestic material consumption. Overall Asia Pacific accounts to 89 percent of the average per capita income of the world. China Between 2005 to 2008, the per capita material consumption increased by 25 percent Due to the strong domestic demands, it has reinforced its position as a net importer of materials (in particular petroleum) Since 1980s the resource efficiency of China has shown a good progress India Over-all material Consumption of India has remained low, whereas the consumption of metal ores, industrial minerals has grown 8.6 percent every year from 1998 to 2008. Thus India is moving at a great pace to change itself into an industrialized economy The report also identified that the Asia-Pacific is making a slide transition to mineral based economy from the biomass based economy, i.e. a transition from agrarian economy to industrialized economy. The biomass in the region has gone down to 25 percent, which accounts to more than half of the domestic extraction, whereas the construction material has seen a growth of 51.4 percent. The report has called up for being vigilant in making up of the development policies and recommended the establishment of a harmonised database to share materials.

Libyas Parliament passed a law banning Gaddafi-era officials from State Posts
Libyas parliament on 5 May 2013 passed a comprehensive law which bans anyone who served


as a senior official under Muammar Gaddafi during his 42 year-long rule from working in government. The passing of such Political Isolation Law possibly will lead to the dismissal of many current leaders, some of whom had defected to the rebel side during the countrys 2011 civil war or had been elected to office since Gaddafis ouster and killing. The move is also likely to further stall the countrys already unsteady transition to democracy by ousting elected lawmakers. The General National Congress, Libyas elected parliament, voted overpoweringly in favour of the law. Out of 200 lawmakers, 169 attended the vote.

Environment Ministry of India Decided to Put a Ban on the Trade of Peacock Feathers
The Environment Ministry of India decided to put a ban on the trade of peacock feathers as a measure to conserve the national bird of India- peacock. The government has no data regarding peacock population, but it is evident that the number of peacocks in India is dwindling because of poaching of the feathers which fetches good price in not just international markets, but also within Indian markets. World Wide Fund for nature in 1991 did the only stock-taking of peacock population in India. It was found that India had only 50 percent of overall peacock population left, in comparison to what existed during independence. It is believed that the population of the peacocks went down even more since 1991 because of a rise in poaching as well as habitat loss. There has been an increased demand of the peacock feathers, also called morpankh. Therefore, the Environment Ministry decided to completely ban the trade of any kind (sale, purchase or transport) of the peacock feathers. Environment and Forest Minister Jayanthi Natarajan explained that the decision was taken to put a complete ban on the trade of morpankh. Wildlife Protection Act, 1972 and the trade of naturally shed peacock feathers Trading of the naturally shed peacock feathers is permitted under the Wildlife Protection Act, 1972. This act completely prohibits peacock killing. However, because of the loophole in the Wildlife Protection Act, 1972, extensive killing of peacocks takes place in India for the lucrative business of peacock feathers. With the approval of the Union Government of India, an amendment will be made to the Wildlife Protection Act, 1972 in order to make trading of any body part of national bird an offence, which would be equivalent to the punishment granted for killing the other non-endangered species. This means that anyone caught buying or selling the peacock feathers or the trophies would be jailed for up to 2 years under amended Wildlife Protection Act, 1972.

Asian Development Bank to provide 6 billion Dollars to India over next 3 years
Asian Development Bank (ADB) on 5 May 2013 announced that it is going to provide about 6 billion dollars loan to India over the next three years which was decided at the concluding day of the 46th annual meeting of the funding agency. Although, the ADB is facing the challenge of raising resources, the basic idea behind providing loan is to maintain its lending level to India. The bank is working on partnership strategy and is planning to maintain the level of lending to India.

Vikas Gowda Clinched Gold at IAAF World Challenge Meeting 2013 at Kingston
At the IAAF World Challenge meeting in Jamaica, Kingston, US-based discus thrower, Vikas Gowda clinched Gold on 5 May 2013 with the throw of 61.38 metres. He defeated Jamaicans Jason Morgan and Fedrick Dacres with throws of 60.96 and 59.30 metres respectively. Both these Jamaicans finished at the second and the third positions. In the 100 metres sprint, USs Tyson Gay recorded 9.86 and secured the top most position. In women category, the best performance was that of US Gia Lewis-Smallwood with 62.41 metres. The IAAF World Challenge meeting in Jamaica was organised at the Kingston's National Stadium.

Staffan de Mistura appointed as Italian Special Envoy to India in Marines Case

Italy in the 1st week of May 2013 appointed Staffan de Mistura the Deputy Foreign Minister of


Italy as the Special Envoy to India on Marines Issue. His appointment to the post was done by the Prime Minister of Italy Enrico Letta. Staffan de Mistura's appointment as the special envoy was done to work out for a fair outcome of the case against the two Italian Marines facing trial for killing two Indian fishermen on the coast of Kerela in February 2012. He has been a frequent visitor to India from the Italian side, since the two marines Massimiliano Latorre and Salvatore Girone were arrested in the case.

President launched Bichitra Tagore Variorum Website

The President of India Pranab Mukherjee launched the Bichitra Tagore Variorum Website on 5 May 2013 at a function at Jadhavpur University, Kolkata. Bichitra would convey the message of Tagores art and thought across the world. In fact, Tagores works are a treasure which speaks of humanitys eternal message. By making Tagore`s works available to all Bichitra will remind us the high moral standards he set for us. Let us reset our moral compass.

India and China pulled back their Troops from Daulat Beg Oldi Sector
India and China on 5 May 2013 pulled back their troops from the stand off point at Daulat Beg Oldi sector in Ladakh, where the Chinese forces had intruded nearly three weeks back. A battalion of Chinese troops estimated at about 50 and accompanied by vehicles and dogs had intruded 19 km inside the Indian Territory across the Line of Actual Control (LAC) in Daulat Beg Oldi sector on April 15 and set up five tents. The Indian troops had also established tented posts facing the Chinese forces at a distance of 300 metres. An agreement was reached for both nations to pull back their troops simultaneously from the face off point.

Tamil Nadu Government decided to set up Property Tax Board

The Tamil Nadu government in month of May 2013 decided to set up a property tax board in order to enable an independent and transparent process to assess the property tax levied on land and buildings. A bill on Property tax board was introduced in the assembly by Tamil Nadu Minister for Municipal Administration K.P. Munusamy that provides for the establishment of the board. So, once the bill is enacted, the Tamil Nadu State Property Tax Board Act, 2013, will provide for creation of the board in line with the recommendations of the 13th Finance Commission. Function the Property Tax Board will Perform It will access the performance grants of local bodies recommended by the Finance Commission. Every property under each municipality and municipal corporation will be enumerated and the property tax board will assist the urban local bodies formulate systems and procedures for assessing and regularly revising the property tax.

Haryana Government issued Shiksha Setu Cards to Students

State Government of Haryana on 5 May 2013 issued Shiksha Setu Cards for Government Schools to keep students and teachers updated about the performance of students. The Shiksha Setu Cards are issued for ensuring individual attention over every student as this will help to impart quality education to students in Government schools. These cards will act as the report cards for the students. This can be considered as a state Governments step towards effective implementation of the Section 134 A of the Right to Education Act, which envisages for admission of children belonging to poor and needy families in private schools

Kudankulam Nuclear Power Plant Got Approval for Operations by the Supreme Court of India
The Supreme Court of India directed that the Kudankulam nuclear plant situated in Tamil Nadu could start its operations now. A bench of Justice K.S. Radhakrishnan and Dipak Misra issued the directions to the government on safety as well as security of the plant, along with its operations. The Supreme Court directed Nuclear Power Corporation of India and the Atomic Energy Regulatory Board to ensure that all steps were taken for the safety of the nuclear plant. The Apex Court explained that the Kudankulam nuclear plant was absolutely safe and secure and that it was necessary to start its operations for economic growth as well as welfare of India. In 2012, the fishermen as well as villagers protested against the fuelling of this plant. Oppo-


nents of this plant, People's Movement Against Nuclear Energy (PMANE) complained that it was situated in the area which was affected badly by 2004 Asian tsunami and that there was a fear of disaster like that of Fukushima nuclear plant of Japan in 2011. The Kudankulam nuclear plant is among those plants which is a part of Indias aim of generating 63000 MW of nuclear power by 2032. Controversy over Kudankulam nuclear plant Kudankulam nuclear plant is the under-construction nuclear power plant in Kudankulam in Tirunelveli district of Tamil Nadu. The construction of this plant began in March 2002. The delay in the construction of the plant is attributed to anti-nuclear protests by the locals as well as People's Movement Against Nuclear Energy (PMANE). The pre-service inspection of the first unit of Kudankulam nuclear plant began by the engineers in 2012. The Atomic Energy Regulatory Board completed the inspection of reactor pressure vessel of Unit-1 and it was found that there were no defects at all.

Book titled Understanding Bhagat Singh was released at New Delhi

Book: Understanding Bhagat Singh by Prof. Chamanlal Understanding Bhagat Singh a book by Prof. Chamanlal was released in the on 3 May 2013. Professor Randhir Singh, Eminent Thinker released the book at School of Social Sciences (SSS- I) Auditorium, JNU in New Delhi. There exist more than 400 votes on the martyr, Bhagat Singh who lived for just 23 years on this earth. The book Understanding Bhagat Singh has tried to explain the soul or spirit of Bhagat Singh like his principle of achieving objectives with dignity, honesty and fearlessness. Chamanlal is an Indian author and scholar, who is a professor in Hindi translation at centre of Indian languages of Jawaharlal Nehru University. Vice-Chancellor of Jawaharlal Nehru University, Prof. S. K. Sopory and Sheila Bhallan, JNU economics professor were the Guest of honor on the occasion of the book release.

India's Services Growth hit 18-month low: HSBC

As per the survey undertake by HSBC, in the month of May 2013, Indias services sector grew at its slowest pace in one and half years during the month of April 2013 as costs for raw materials, petrol and labour increased considerably. It is important here to note that the pace of hiring by private sector companies was also slowest in seven months, as per a monthly HSBC India survey of services sector managers. Highlights of the Report The HSBC India Composite Output Index fell to 50.5 in April from 51.4 in March. The latest reading indicated that activity increased marginally and at the slowest pace since October 2011. The seasonally adjusted HSBC Business Activity Index declined to 50.7 in April from 51.4 in the previous month. Input prices saw further increase in April 2013 the trend continued for the 49th consecutive month and cost of raw material, petrol and labour were higher, HSBC noted. The rates of increase in average selling prices were slower at both manufacturers and service providers. Despite the fact that new businesses placed at services and manufacturing firms in India increased last month, the rates of expansion eased. The manufacturers cited power cuts while service providers mentioned extreme weather and challenging market conditions for such a trend.

Worlds First Gun Made From 3D Printer Technology Fired Successfully in US

The first gun of the world made out of 3D printer technology was fired successfully in US. Defense Distributed created this firearm and the form also planned to make these blueprints available online. Defense Distributed spent a year for creation of this firearm, which was fired successfully on 4 May 2013 at firing range south of Austin, Texas. The anti-gun campaigners criticised this project, while the law enforcement of Europe is monitoring the developments of this project. Victoria Baines of cybercrime centre of Europol explained that the criminals at present were likely to pursue the established routes for obtaining these firemans, but with the passage of time, the 3D printer technology would become more user-friendly as well as cost-effective, thereby posing risks.


Cody Wilson, 25, a student of the University of Texas is the head of Defense Distributed. 3D printing has successfully been called the future of manufacturing. Working of the 3D printer technology The 3D printer technology works by building layer upon layer of the material, which is basically plastic. This is done in order to build the complex and solid objects. This technology is cheaper and instead of buying the goods from markets, the consumers will be able to download its designs. Then these can be printed out at the home itself. However, like all technologies, there are advantages as well as disadvantages. The first gun of the world made out of 3D printer technology cost 8000 US dollar from eBay. The gun was assembled from different printed components which were made out of ABS plastic. The firing pin was made out of metal. Cody Wilson was fiven the manufacturing as well as sellers license from US Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms and Explosives (ATF) in order to make this gun. US Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms and Explosives (ATF) official Donna Sellers explained that the gun was legal in US as long as it wasnt a National Firearms Act weapon. 3D printing technology was used in the past by certain criminal organisations for creation of card readers skimmers, which are inserted in the bank machines. Law enforcement agencies across the world have professionals for monitoring cybercrimes.

National Front won the 13th General Elections of Malaysia by Simple Majority
The National Front of Malaysia, that is led by Najib Razak on 5 May 2013 won by simple majority in the 13th General Elections to secure its 56-year hold on the power. The Barisan Nasional (National Front) Coalition secured 133 seats of the 22 member Parliament seats. This is the worst ever election performance of the National Front. The opposition Pakatan Rakyat a three party alliance that is led by Anwar Ibrahim won 89 seats. The alliance was the toughest of all oppositions faced by the National Front till date. In 2008, the National Front won 135 seats of the 222 seats, the first time when the Najibs Party lost two-third majority in the Parliament in its 56 years of journey. With this win Najib will get his second term in the office.

Uttar Pradesh accounted for Largest Number of Mobile Subscribers in India

According to a Survey, the country's most populous state, Uttar Pradesh, accounted for the largest number of mobile subscribers in India followed by Tamil Nadu, Maharashtra, Andhra Pradesh and Bihar. Uttar Pradesh has a total of 121.60 million mobile phone connections, while, Tamil Nadu has 71.81 million subscribers, according to the TRAI data. Maharashtra is at the third position, with a subscriber base of 67.73 million followed by Andhra Pradesh and Bihar at 64.12 million and 60.73 million, respectively. These five states together account of 366 million mobile subscribers, which is 45 per cent of the total cell phone connections in the country. Karnataka stands sixth with 52.45 million mobile subscribers followed by the central Indian state of Madhya Pradesh with 51.43 million subscribers. Gujarat, fast rising as the most industryfriendly state, came eighth with 51.23 million cell phone connections, while Rajasthan, the largest state in terms of area, has a total of 47.83 million mobile subscribers. India, which is the world's second largest mobile phone market in terms of subscribers, had a total of 861.66 million mobile connections as on February 2013, data from telecom regulator Telecom Regulatory Authority of India (TRAI) showed. Mobile subscriber base in the country declined by 0.11 percent to 861.66 million at the end of February 2013 from 862.6 million in January 2013. India's total telecom subscriber base, which includes mobile and landline connections, declined marginally to 892 million in February 2013 from 893.1 million at the end of January this year. India's telecom subscriber base had touched an all-time high of 965.5 million in June 2012.

Union Cabinet approved Changes to Aajeevika, the National Rural Livelihoods Mission
The Union Cabinet on 6 May 2013 had cleared important changes to the National Rural Livelihoods Mission (Aajeevika) in a major boost to the roll out of the womens self help group model across the country, The changes is supposed to provide additional resources and additional elasticity to implement the NRLM (Aajeevika) in a more effective and accelerated manner across the country thereby creating new livelihoods and empowering women across rural India. Highlights of the changes approved are


Improved targeting, by doing away with BPL criteria and instead identifying target groups through the Participatory Identification of Poor (PIP) process. The Participatory Identification of Poor process has been expansively demonstrated to be very effective in states where womens self-help-groups have been succeeded. The list finalized through the P.I.P process will be inspected by the Gram Sabha and approved by the Gram Panchayat. The P.I.P process will also have a set of exclusion criteria, automatic inclusion criteria and a set of deprivation indicators for enabling poverty ranking in a participatory manner. This delinks N.R.L.M target group from the BPL list. Interest subvention and additional interest subvention in 150 districts Union Cabinet has approved the provision of interest subvention to Women SHGs, enabling them to avail loans up to 3 lakh Rupees at an interest rate of 7 per cent per annum. Women SHGs that repay loans in time will get additional 3 per cent subvention, reducing the effective rate to 4 per cent. The initiative, in the first phase, would focus on 150 districts, including the 82 IAP districts, affected by Left Wing Extremism. Change in the pattern of financial assistance - replacing Capital subsidy with a Community Investment Support fund The Cabinet has approved to withdraw capital subsidy to S.H.Gs and instead provide financial support S.H.G federations and livelihoods organizations of the S.H.G members in the intensive blocks through a grant called Community Investment Support fund. Setting up of National Level Society under N.R.L.M for more effective implementation The Cabinet also approved the setting up an autonomous, adequately staffed, professionally managed and empowered agency at the national level to implement the N.R.L.M, called the National Rural Livelihoods Promotion Society (N.R.L.P.S) under the Societies Registration Act. The NRLPS will act as the technical support unit of N.R.L.M. The setting up of such a Society is essential to implement the programme in a mission mode, as livelihoods programmes require a wide range of specialization and experience. The Society structure would enable access to high quality professional support, provide flexibility to create partnerships and facilitate innovations and would serve as a knowledge center for rural livelihoods for the state missions. Further it will provide an opportunity for formally involving State Governments in decisionmaking, by nominating them to the Executive Committee of the Society.

07-MAY-2013 Planning Commission finalized Haryana Annual Plan 2013-14

The annual plan of 27,072 crore rupees for Haryana for the financial year 2013-14 was finalized on 6 May 2013 by the Planning Commission of India at New Delhi. Deputy Chairman of Planning Commission, Montek Singh Ahluwalia and Chief Minister of Haryana, Bhupinder Singh Hooda together finalized the plan. The GDP growth rate and per-capita income of the state during the 11th Plan was among the highest in the country. The state needs to pay more attention to make the growth more inclusive The innovative steps to improve the achievements of the state in sectors like education, health and infrastructure development were commendable. The state need to concentrate towards agricultural promotion as focus is needed in terms of horticulture in the states. The state also needs to develop storage capacities of the produce which includes cold storages. Modern agricultural practices should be adopted to enhance productivity waking efficient use of water available with the state. The state showcased the lowest sex ration at 877 females for every 1000 males. This is even short from the national average of 940. The state has seen an improvement of 11 points in terms of Child Sex Ratio (0-6 years) from 2001 in 2011, but remains lowest in the country with 830 points. To control the situation and to empower girl and women the state government has implemented Ladli Scheme but it needs to do more to change the real picture. Khap Panchayats violence towards women and girl child also drew the attention. States Focus for 12th Plan First priority will be the development of Social Service Sector Second highest priority has been accorded to the development of infrastructure of irrigation, power, roads & road transport and projects under the economic stimulus package Health Universal access to school with increased access to higher education The state has planned to lay special attention on the needs of the Scheduled Castes, Backward Classes, minorities, women and children


Former Italian Prime Minister Giulio Andreotti died at 94

Giulio Andreotti, the former Italian Prime Minister died on 6 May 2013 at the age of 94 in Rome. He was one of the most powerful figures in the politics of the country after World War II. In the last days of his life, he suffered from respiratory and heart problems. About Giulio Andreotti He was born on 14 January 1919 to a schoolteacher parents in Rome He started his political career in Italian Parliament in 1946 and remained active for more than six decades, before turning up a senator for life He was a member of the Christian Democratic Party and served as the Prime Minister of Italy seven times between 1972 to 1992. In the last years of his political career he suffered allegations of corruption and mafia links. He met pope for the first time at the age of eight after sneaking away from the a Vatican tour group Became a junior minister at the age of 28 He was a pro-European, who was committed towards European integration to help in forging the way forward to a single currency He was one of the most prominent faces of the Years of Lead in Italy, the time during 1970s and 1980s when several people were killed in Political violence (Years of Lead was a period of sociopolitical disorder in Italy) He was accused of sharing a Kiss of Honour with the Mafia boss of the time Toto Riina in a secret meeting in 1987, who was captured in 1993. An appeals Court sentenced him to 24 years in Prison for cultivating a relationship with Mafia bosses in November 2002

Arctic Seas Are Becoming Acidic Rapidly Due to Carbon Dioxide Emissions: Research
Scientists from Norway's Center for International Climate and Environmental Research in their report unveiled that the Arctic seas are becoming acidic rapidly because of carbon dioxide emissions. Widespread changes were observed in the ocean chemistry of Arctic. The scientists explained that even if the carbon dioxide emissions stopped; it would still take thousands of years for the chemistry of Arctic Ocean to revert back to the pre-industrial levels. A lot of creatures such as the commercially important fishes would be affected because of this. The scientists additionally forecasted that a lot of changes in marine ecosystem will also take place. But what these changes would be is hard to tell. It is an already established fact that the carbon dioxide leads to warming of the plant, but it is not known to a lot of people that it also make the alkaline seas even more acidic when these seas absorb carbon dioxide from air. This absorption is faster in cold waters and therefore the Arctic sea is very vulnerable. It is worth noticing that the recent decrease in the summer sea ice exposed the sea surface to atmospheric carbon dioxide. The vulnerability of Arctic is intensified because of the increasing flow of freshwater from the melting land ice and rivers. This is so because freshwater is not that effective at neutralising the acidifying effects of carbon dioxide. Nordic Seas are other seas that are acidifying over range of depths, quickly in the surface waters as well as slowly in the deep waters. The research team, while exploring the acidifying effects, monitored decreases in the seawater pH of around 0.02 per decade ever since late 1960s in Barents seas and Iceland. Acidification has also been observed in surface waters of Bering Strait as well as Canada Basin of the central Arctic Ocean. Scientists observed that average acidity of ocean waters across the world is around 30 percent higher than what it was before Industrial Revolution.

The 14th India-Australia JMC Meeting held in New Delhi

The 14th India-Australia Joint Ministerial Commission (JMC) Meeting was held in New Delhi on 29 January, 2013 co-chaired by Anand Sharma, Union Minister of Commerce, Industry and Textiles, India and the Craig Emerson MP, Australian Minister for Trade and Competitiveness and Minister assisting the Prime Minister on Asian Century Policy.The issues discussed during JMC meeting were institutional framework for growth in bilateral trade and investment, initiatives of India Australia CEO forum, Australia and Indias mutual interests in the effectiveness of global and regional economic institutions, launch of Regional Comprehensive Economic Partnership(RCEP) negotiations, strengthening of the East Asia Summit as a forum that incorporated all major econo-


mies in the India-Pacific region, G-20, WTO, IOR-ARC, Education and skill development, agriculture cooperation and food security, people-to-people links, etc. During the JMC, both nations also reviewed bilateral co-operations in sectors like Agriculture, Civil nuclear energy cooperation agreement and Comprehensive Economic Cooperation Agreement (CECA) etc. In April 2008, a Joint Study Group (JSG) was constituted, inter alia, to examine the feasibility for establishing a Free Trade Agreement (FTA) between India and Australia. Based on the recommendations of the JSG, India-Australia are negotiating CECA covering trade in goods, services, investment and IPR related issues. The 1st round of India-Australia CECA negotiations was held during 28th-29th July, 2011. Four rounds of negotiations have been held so far as under: 2nd round-17-18th November, 2011; 3rd Round---24-25th May 2012; 4th round--8-9th November, 2012. Both nations are negotiating the CECA as stated above and the fifth round is likely to take place in Mid May, 2013. It is not feasible to indicate the time likely to be taken to complete the negotiations in a balanced manner bringing mutual benefit, and this was recognised by both leaders in JMC.

Tech Mahindra signed agreement with Falcorp of South Africa

Tech Mahindra on 6 May 2013 signed agreement with Falcorp of South Africa to float a new company. Tech Mahindra and Mahindra Satyam together employed close to 300 associates in South Africa. The region is moving towards recovering from the impact of the recent economic downturn, local telecom providers have demonstrated a shift in their IT spends. The company is intending to bring in our expertise around network, mobility, analytics, cloud and security.

World Asthma Day 2013 observed with theme, You Can Control Your Asthma
First Tuesday of May is observed as World Asthma Day World Asthma Day was observed across the world on 7 May 2013. The day is observed across the world to spread awareness and care around the world including India. The theme for 2013 is You Can Control Your Asthma and the sub-theme for the year introduced by GINA is It's Time to Control Asthma. The day is organized and sponsored by the Global Initiative for Asthma (GINA) as a partnership between health care groups and asthma educators to raise awareness about asthma. Across the world there are across 300 million people who are suffering from Asthma and of them 2.50 lakh deaths every year is attributed to the chronic respiratory disease Asthma. About the World Asthma Day The World Asthma Day is organised annually by the Global Initiative for Asthma (GINA) to improve awareness and care of the world towards Asthma. World Asthma Day takes place each year on the first Tuesday in May. The World Asthma Day for the first time was organised in 1998 and was celebrated across 35 counties in conjunction with the first World Asthma Meeting that was held in Barcelona, Spain. GINA is one of the founding participants in the World Health Organization's Global Alliance against Chronic Respiratory Diseases (GARD). GINA Global Strategy to control Asthma A strategy for achieving and maintaining asthma control is set out in the GINA Global Strategy for Asthma Management and Prevention. The strategy requires four interrelated components of therapy: Develop patient/doctor partnership Identify and reduce exposure to risk factors Assess, treat, and monitor asthma Manage asthma exacerbations

Najib Razak sworn in as the Prime Minister of Malaysia for the Second Term
Najib Razak on 6 May 2013 was sworn in as the Prime Minister of Malaysia for a second term by Malaysias king Abdul Halim Muadzam Shah. The coalition of Najib Razak, Najibs Barisan Nasional (National Front) which was ruling from of his 56-year once again retained power in elections but this time it was branded as fraudulent by the opposition. Najib Razaks party, the 13-party Barisan Nasional (National Front), secured 133 of the 222 parliamentary seats on 5May 2013. The coalition that has ruled since independence in 1957 held off a well determined opposition


challenge to retain a firm parliamentary majority in elections widely forecast to be the biggest-ever threat to the ruling bloc. It is important here to note that this time the vote saw a record turnout of more than 10 million people. Najib Razak took office in 2009, and has faced rising public calls for reform. He has responded with some limited liberalisation moves while his critics dismiss it as superficial steps that darted deep change to avoid upsetting ruling elite. A Brief Insight into Najib Razaks Political Career Najib Razak became the sixth Prime Minister of Malaysia in year 2009. He previously held the post of Deputy Prime Minister from 7 January 2004 and has succeeded Tun Abdullah Ahmad Badawi to become the Prime Minister on 3 April 2009. Najib Razak was first assigned into the Cabinet of Malaysia I year 1978 where he was appointed Deputy Minister of Energy, Telecommunications and Post. In Year 1991, Najib was appointed Minister of Defence. In Year 1995, Najib Rzak left the Defense Ministry and was appointed as the Minister of Education. In September 2008, Najib Razak overtook the control of the Ministry of Finance.

A Cheap and Effective Method devised to Produce Clean Drinking Water

A team led by an IIT-Madras professor devised a cheap and effective method for producing clean drinking water. With this device in place, 10 liters of water could be produced which will be free from bacteria and virus. The total cost for producing this amount of water will be 10-12 rupees per month. The team headed by T Pradeep used silver nanoparticles in his device. Silver nanoparticles are not only affordable but they also do not need electricity or hydrostatic pressure to produce potable water. They can operate at ambient temperatures ranging from 5-35 degrees Celsius. Moreover, the production of the nanoparticle matrix is eco-friendly. The team applies sustained release of about 50 parts per billion (ppb) of silver ions in a large volume of water to destroy microorganisms. Silver ions have the ability to destroy the integrity of cell membranes and damage DNA. To achieve this, Scientists prepared a composite of aluminium oxy-hydroxide on which silver nanoparticles were deposited. The composite with silver nanoparticles is in the form of sand grains.

Annual Report of Pentagon on China Unveiled Chinas Role in Cyber Attacks

The annual report of Pentagon on China unveiled that the government and military of China targeted the computers of the US government in order to cyber spy the US computers. Intrusion into US computers was directed towards collection of intelligence on the US diplomatic, defence and economic sectors. This in turn would have helped China in its defence programme. It is important to note that this is the first time that the annual report of the Pentagon directly linked the cyber spying attacks like these to the Government of Beijing. In the past, China has always denied any kind of hacking and has instead blamed others for the attacks like these. The Pentagon report in the meanwhile also criticised the military modernisation programme of China as well as defence spending on the basis of lack of transparency. The report highlighted that in the year 2012, various computers across the world, including the ones owned by the US government, were a target of the intrusion and some of these were directly related to the Chinese military and the government. The attacks basically focused on exfiltrating information which could in turn provide benefit to the defence industry of China. This added concerns primarily because the skills which were required for intrusions like these, were most likely the similar ones required for conducting the computer network attacks. In March 2013, China announced that the annual defence budget of the country was 114 bn US dollar, an increase of 10.4 percent. Pentagon however estimated that total military expenditure of China in 2012 was much more, somewhere between 135 bn US dollar and 215 bn US dollar. China, at present, is in disputed state with a lot of its neighbours and these also include East China Sea and South China Sea.

Ivan Menezes Was Named as the New Chief Executive Officer of Diageo
Ivan Menezes was named as the new Chief Executive Officer of Spirits Company Diageo on 7 May 2013. He replaced Paul Walsh who remained the CEO of this British firm since 2000. Ivan Menezes was the Chief Operating Officer of the company. Menezes will take on his office from 1 July 2013. The Chairman of Diageo, Franz Humer explained that the handover of the role of CEO was given to Ivan Menezes at the time when their


business was strong in terms of global development. Ivan Menezes originally hailed from India. He later headed up the key North America division of Diageo for 8 years before he was appointed as the COO in 2012. Paul Walsh, 57, has not decided about his new job yet. He however has a lot of corporate nonexecutive roles. He was also working as the business ambassador of the business department of the British government.

J&K Government decided to set up J&K Medical Supplies Corporation

The State Government of Jammu and Kashmir on 6 May 2013 decided to set up the J&K Medical Supplies Corporation. The decision was made to do away the existing purchase committee in place for procurement of drugs in the state run hospitals. The decision was made in a high level meeting chaired by the Chief Minister of State, Omar Abudullah at Srinagar. At present the Government has decided that the Corporation will function on the pattern of the Tamil Nadu Corporation. Chief Minister of the state will be the Chairman of the Board of Directors of the Corporation.

Cuba launched Complaint against Australian Tobacco laws at WTO

Cuba on 6 May 2013 has launched a legal challenge to Australia's tobacco packaging laws at the World Trade Organization, the Geneva-based trade body. It is important here to note that Cuba has never before launched WTO litigation. Its challenge follows related complaints about Australia's tough tobacco packaging rules by Ukraine, Honduras and Dominican Republic. Cuba has touched off a 60-day window for Australia to try to resolve the problem in talks with Cuba. After that Cuba could ask the WTO to appoint a panel of adjudicators to judge its complaint. It was in December 2012 when Australia's law came into force banning cigarette logos and requiring packets to be plain olive green with graphic health warnings. It was seen as a model for others considering a similar move, including the European Union, India, Norway, South Korea, New Zealand and Canada. So, in order to bring in the world's toughest rules on tobacco packaging, Australia had to win a court fight against cigarette makers British American Tobacco, Imperial Tobacco, Philip Morris and Japan Tobacco.

Walmart Replaced ExxonMobil to Record Highest Revenue in 2012 in Fortune 500 List
500 largest companies of the US, Fortune 500 scored the near-record revenues in 2012 and retailer Walmart became the biggest profit maker on annual list by replacing ExxonMobil, according to the Fortune magazine. Apple reached into the list of top 10. This was the first time that Apple entered the list of Top 10, an increase of six places from number 17 position in 2011. The overall earnings of Fortune 500, accounted for 820 billion US dollar in 2012, a decrease from an all-time high of 824.5 billion US dollar in 2011. Fortune magazine described that earnings of Fortune 500 amounted to a sale of 6.8 percent. Fortune senior editor-at-large Shawn Tully explained that these companies will have to increase their staff as well as pay higher salary in the wake of improving economy. Walmart won the first position on the list, replacing energy company ExxonMobil after it posted revenue of 469.2 billion US dollar or 19.3 billion US dollar more than the revenue of ExxonMobil. It is worth noticing that both Walmart and Exxon have exchanged top most positions in recent years. In the list, various energy companies emerged great players. Chevron remained at the third position and Phillips 66 remained at the fourth position. Valero Energy was placed at the ninth position. In the list of top 10 companies were, Warren Buffett's Berkshire Hathaway at the fifth position, Apple (sixth), General Motors (Seventh), General Electric (Eighth) and Ford Motor (Tenth). In the financial sector, JPMorgan Chase was placed at 18th position, Bank of America at the 21st position, Wells Fargo at 25th position and Citigroup ranked at 26th position.

Saudi Arabia: No Extension of Grace Period for Foreigners staying Illegally in the Country
The Interior Minister of Saudi Arabia on 6 May 2013 announced that there would be no extension over the three month grace for foreigners staying in the country illegally. The Interior Ministry has urged people to take advantage of the grace period provided to them for regularization of their situation.


The country will adopt a zero tolerance policy for people who fail to regularize their situation and stay in the country illegally after the completion of the grace period. The government also appealed to the emigrants staying illegally in the country to contact with the authorities and rectify their status of being in the country following its rules and regulations. Earlier, Abdullah Bin Abdul Aziz the King of Saudi issued a three month grace period for the foreigners staying illegally in the country to correct their residency status in the country or exit the nation after following due procedures.

Cabinet gave approval for Women Self Help Groups to Get Low Interest Loans
The Union Cabinet of India on 1May 2013 approved major changes to the National Rural Livelihoods Mission (NRLM) with the objective of removing poverty in rural areas by empowering women. Approximately, 25 lakh Women Self Help Groups (SHGs) will be given bank loans at an interest rate of seven percent. They could avail loans upto 3 lakh rupees annually. At first, the scheme will begin as a pilot project in 150 districts which includes the 82 Integrated Action Plan districts affected by naxal violence while 75 per cent of the cost will be carried by the Central government and 25 per cent by the States in the rest of the states. All women SHGs are now getting bank loans at 11.5 to 14 per cent rate of interest. In the 150 districts, the Union government will carry the complete cost of the interest subvention from the market rate to seven per cent. The entire cost of the project is approximately 1650 crore rupees for 2013-14, out of which, 1400 crore rupees shall be carried out by the Union government and 250 crore rupees by the States. Aajeevika - National Rural Livelihoods Mission (NRLM) was launched by the Ministry of Rural Development (MoRD), Government of India in June 2011. Aided in part through investment support by the World Bank, the Mission aims at creating efficient and effective institutional platforms of the rural poor enabling them to increase household income through sustainable livelihood enhancements and improved access to financial services.

Support Measures of 985 crore Rupees allocated to boost farm sector in Tamil Nadu
Tamil Nadu Chief Minister J. Jayalalithaa in May 2013 announced a series of support measures covering a range of crops. Amongst the programmes announced is 275-crore Rupees sustainable sugarcane initiative covering 50000 acres to be implemented through sugar mills. The initiative basically involves increasing yields by changes in cultivation practices including raising a sugarcane nursery and transplanting them, along the lines of paddy crop, with adequate spacing, and using optimal quantities of water and fertilisers. Different Support Measure that were Announced A measure which includes a 114-crore Rupees programme was announced to make Tamil Nadu self-sufficient in food grains production. Scientists, farmers and extension workers will be brought together to bring down the yield gap the difference in crop yields observed at the laboratory level and field level in crops. Three programmes focussed on paddy, coarse grains and pulses will be formulated. Over 55.60 crore Rupees has been earmarked for drip irrigation equipment for tur dal crop over an area of 10000 acres. The total area under tur dal under this programme will be 50000 acres. The State Government has also set aside 23.60 crore Rupees to establish marketing centres for coconuts in Coimbatore district, bananas in Tirunelveli, and improve approach roads in 10 regulated marketing yards and establish regulated marketing yards in Bodinayakanur and Mudukalathur. The SPV will be created under the Horticulture Department with equity of 1 crore rupees. Infrastructure for this facility will be set up at a cost of 112 crore, Rupees Farm machinery. The Government is now implementing a project to create 55000 farm ponds in the Cauvery delta districts to augment ground water supply. The Agricultural Engineering Department will buy 700 rain guns and mobile sprinklers at a cost of 57 crore Rupees and rent them out at low cost to farmers in the Delta districts. This will help them to efficiently use water from the farm ponds. The Government also plans to bring under cultivation over 12500 acres of fallow lands. It has earmarked a back-ended subsidy of 4000 Rupees an acre and will provide inputs at a subsidised cost. To increase the yield of horticulture crops and improve marketing, 186.46 crore Rupees will be sanctioned to create a modern, hub-and-spoke model. The Chief Minister also announced plans for a special purpose vehicle (SPV) with 100-crore


Rupees interest free revolving fund to supply quality inputs to farmers. The State Government has also earmarked 124.70 crore Rupees to supply farm machinery at subsidized prices.

Stanislas Wawrinka Defeated David Ferrer to Win ATP World Tour, Portugal Open 2013 Title
Switzerlands Stanislas Wawrinka defeated Spains David Ferrer in the final match of ATP World Tour, Portugal Open 2013 title at Oeiras on 5 May 2013 by a 6-1, 6-4 margin. David Ferrer, inspite of the defeat, maintains a record of 7-4 against Stanislas Wawrinka. This is the fourth career title of Stanislas Wawrinka and also first since January 2011. About Stanislas Wawrinka Stanislas Wawrinka won challenger titles at San Benedetto and Geneva in 2003. He made his Davis Cup debut in the year 2004. In 2006, he won his first ATP title in Umag against Djokovic. In 2007, he finished in Top 40 for second straight year. In the year 2008, he recorded a most consistent season by entering into Top 10 and reaching to the finals of two ATP- ATP Masters Series Rome and Doha. He also won doubles gold medal at Beijing Olympics in the same year. In 2011, he reached to the finals of ATP in doubles category at ATP World Tour Masters 1000 Indian Wells. In 2012, he finished in Top 20 for the second year in a row as well as third time in the career.

New Sex Superbug can be more deadly than AIDS

Doctors have warned that the new sexually transmitted Sex-Superbug named H041 can be much more deadly than the AIDS virus. Recently, two cases of the sex-superbug were confirmed in Hawaii. Doctors have claimed that the superbug is the antibiotic resistant strain of gonorrhea. In 2011, the superbug was discovered for the first time in Japan and then it spread to Hawaii and now visible in Norway and California. As per Doctors, the H041 bacteria can be much more deadly than the AIDS Virus because the bacteria is more aggressive and will affect more people quickly and effect is more direct. About Gonorrhea Gonorrhea also known as Clap is a disease that is sexually transmitted and is in existence since the medieval age. The infection results in genital discharge and painful sores. This is also related to the sterility and ectopic pregnancies in both men and women.

SEBI approved Kerala's Start-up Village Angel Fund of 10 million Dollars

Market regulator SEBI in May 2013 had approved an angel fund of 10 million Dollars to address the problem of resource crisis for start-up companies across the country. The fund could go up to 20 million dollars with an over-allotment option that would focus on telecom and internet firms. The Fund is supposed to start investing once the initial close of 2 million Dollars is achieved. Consultancy KPMG is the advisor and ILFS is trustee of the fund based at Start-up Village which is the country's first telecom incubator. About Village Angel Fund The angel fund will be investing not only in the most promising start-ups located in Start-up Village but also in similar enterprises across the country. Infosys co-founder and Start-up Village chief mentor Kris Gopalakrishnan, MobME, the country's first campus telecom start-up, Ravi Pillai, founder of the.16000-crore Rupees Bahrain-based RP Group and other leading angel investors in India will be part of the fund. The Village angel fund will act like a shot in the arm for Start-up Village, which would become the first incubator in India to have its own in-house fund. The fund will help the internet-telecom incubator to get the most conducive ecosystem for product start-ups.

Lok Sabha Speaker unveiled Statue of N T Rama Rao in Parliament

Meira Kumar, the Speaker of Lok Sabha (Lower House of the Parliament) on 7 May 2013 unveiled the statue of former Andhra Pradesh Chief Minister and Founder of Telgu Desam Party N T Rama Rao in the Parliament. The statue was donated by NTRs daughter and Minister of State for Commerce and Industry Dr D Purandeswari.


About Nandamuri Taraka Rama Rao N T Rama Rao also known as NTR was born on 28 May 1923 and died on 18 January 1996 He was a film actor, director and producer by profession and his debut film was Mana Desam that was directed by L. V. Prasad in 1949. He starred in about 320 Telugu Films. In 1982, he founded the Telgu Desam Party (TDP) He served Andhra Pradesh as its Chief Minister for three terms from 1983 to 1995. He played an instrumental role in formation of the National Front Government, which governed India from 1989 to 1990 as a coalition of non-congress parties

Increase in Mercury Level Leading to Drastic Decline in Arctic Foxes: Research

Scientists from the Leibniz Institute for Zoo and Wildlife Research in the month of May 2013 unveiled that foxes in the Arctic region who fed on ocean prey were exposed to higher levels of mercury. In the time duration of 100 years, the mercury levels of oceans of the world have doubled, as per the United Nations. Most of the mercury deposits take place in Arctic than other parts of Earth. The Arctic Council described that an increase of ten times has been observed in mercury levels in top most region of the Earth in past 150 years. On Mednyi, the Russian island, it was found that the foxes survived exclusively on the sea birds as well as some seal carcasses. The fox population of this island decreased drastically in 1970s. Although the population of foxes is stable, but they are still in poor condition or have very low body weight. IUCN lists them as critically endangered species. Lead author of the research Dr Gabor Czirjak explained that they believed infection to be the cause of shrinking number of foxes, but it wasnt found. However, when the hair samples of the foxes as well as the animals on which they fed, were examined, it was found that there was a significant rate of mercury in it. When the Russian foxes were compared with the Arctic foxes, very different results were found. The foxes in the Arctic had comparatively lower level of poison in the body. These results would be of a great help for conservation of foxes in the Arctic. The research raised some of the important questions regarding how accumulation of mercury was taking place in marine food chain in Arctic region. It is worth noticing that global efforts were undertaken to control a boost in the mercury level earlier in 2013 when over 140 countries of the world agreed signing legally binding treaty for curbing the mercury pollution.

First national surfing and stand up paddle competition of India Concluded

Kovalam Beach, Thiruvananthapuram: Spice Coast Open, the first ever national surfing and stand up paddle (SUP) competition of India took place here. Tamil Nadu surfers grabbed the first position at the first ever national surfing and stand up paddle (SUP) competition of India, Spice Coast Open, which concluded on 5 May 2013 at Kovalam beach at Thiruvananthapuram. Over 100 athletes from across the country took part in the competition. Participants took part in various categories at finals in competitions which took place over three days time duration. Among surfers from different state, Karnataka and Kerala surfers were the winners. The winners in different categories were honoured with cash rewards, trophies and certificates. About Spice Coast Open 2013 Spice Coast Open is the first official national competitive event of the sport. It was organised by Surfing Federation of India (SFI). SFI is the body recognised by the International Surfing Association (ISA) along with state Department of Tourism. Spice Coast Open 2013 competition was inaugurated in Kovalam by former South African cricketer and surfing enthusiast Jonty Rhodes.

US Government honoured 15 AAPI Women as Champions of Change

The US government on 6 May 2013 honoured 15 Asian American and Pacific Islander (AAPI) women as champions of change in recognition of their important contribution to the community. This includes two Indian-Americans; Aparna Bhattacharyaa from Atlanta and Pramila Jayapal from Wahington State. Aparna Bhattacharyya is the Executive Director of Raksha, in Atlanta. She is a passionate advocate for immigrant survivors of family and sexual violence and plays a key role in providing


them access to safety, justice and healing. Aparna at present is a board member for the Georgia Coalition against Domestic Violence, VIDA Legal Assistance and the National Immigrant Women's Advocacy Project. Pramila Jayapal founded the non-profit organization OneAmerica in the aftermath of 9/11. One America is the largest immigrant advocacy organisation in Washington State. Pramila at present is the Distinguished Taconic Fellow at Center for Community Change and a Distinguished Fellow at the University of Washington Law School. The Champions of Change programme honours groups of Americans, individuals, businesses and organisations, who are doing extraordinary things to empower and inspire members of their communities. Other awardees of the Champions of Change are; Minh Dang from California; Catherine Eusebio from California; Atsuko Toko Fish from Boston, Lusiana Tuga Hansen from Alaska, Myrla Baldonado from Chicago, Arline Loh from Delaware, Mia Mingus from California, Natalie Nakase from Los Angeles, Mary Frances Oneha from Hawaii, Nancy Tom from Chicago, Karen Suyemoto from Boston, Van Ton-Quinlivan from California and Shireen Zaman from Washington, DC.

Pentagon:China exported Arms worth 11 Billion US Dollars in 5 Years

According to a report released by Pentagon China signed agreements for arms exports worth 11 billion US dollars from 2007 to 2011. Pakistan maintains its position as Beijings primary customer for conventional weapons. The report added that Chinese defence firms are marketing and selling arms throughout the world with the majority of their sales to Asia and the Middle East/North Africa. In 2012, China unveiled the Yi Long tactical unmanned aerial vehicle. It will be marketed to developing nations. China engages in both arms sales and defence industrial cooperation with Islamabad, including co-production of the JF-17 fighter aircraft, F-22P frigates with helicopters, K-8 jet trainers, F-7 fighter aircraft, early warning and control aircraft, tanks, air-to-air missiles, anti-ship cruise missiles, and cooperation on main battle tank production. China's military modernisation may have potential implications for regional stability. According to the report, Sub-Saharan African nations consider China as a provider of low-cost weapons with less political hassles compared to other international arms suppliers.

Mahindra & Mahindra launched New Variant of its Pick-up Vehicle, Bolero Maxi Truck Plus
Mahindra & Mahindra, the automobile manufacturing company on 6 May 2013 launched a new variant of its pick-up vehicle, Bolero Maxi Truck Plus, which is priced at 4.33 lakh Rupees (exshowroom Mumbai) to meet the increasing needs of the urban goods transportation. The Mahindra Bolero Maxi Truck Plus has been launched in two versions BS III and BS IV. The BS III version is priced at 4.33 lakh Rupees (ex-showroom Thane) while the BS IV version is priced at 4.43 lakh Rupees (ex-showroom Mumbai). Specification of Bolero Maxi Truck Plus The Bolero Maxi Truck Plus is basically a pick-up truck like the Bolero utility vehicle It is powered by the 2523cc common rail diesel engine that develops 63PS of power and 195Nm of torque. It has a maximum payload of 1150 kg and the ARAI-claimed mileage for the BS III version is 17.7 kmpl. It features dual tone interiors, power steering, a 5.5 meter turning radius, leaf spring suspension, 15 inch wheel rims, a 2500 mm x 1620 mm x 458 mm cargo bed, an engine immobiliser and a 1 year unlimited kilometer unlimited warranty. It is important here to note that the Indian pick-up market is growing more rapidly than ever before and Mahindra has been leading this category with a 54% market share during FY 2012 -13.

Youssou Ndour and Finnish Composer Kaija Saariaho won the Polar Music Prize
Senegalese singer Youssou Ndour and Finnish composer Kaija Saariaho were named as the recipients of Polar Music Prize 2013. Each winner will get one million kronor (98600 euros) from the Royal Swedish Academy of Music. The awards will be presented at a Stockholm ceremony on 27 August 2013 by King Carl XVI Gustaf. Sweden's highest musical honour is awarded annually to both a pop performer and classical artist. The prize is awarded for exceptional achievements in the creation and advancement of music. The academy recognised Ndour as a singer, poet, a storyteller, singer of praise, entertainer and


verbal historian.

08-MAY-2013 Ray Harryhausen, the Master of Visual Effects Died at 92

Ray Harryhausen, the master of visual effects and stop-motion animation, died on 7 May 2013 in Hammersmith Hospital in London, UK. He was 92 years of age. About Ray Harryhausen Raymond Frederick Harryhausen, popularly known as Ray Harryhausen was born in June 1920 in Los Angeles. Ray Harryhausens stop-motion animation films such as Clash of the Titans, and Jason and the Argonauts were acclaimed highly. He made his models with his own hand and shot them by each frame for creation of bestknown animated sequences. He was an inspiration for various film directors such as Peter Jackson of the Lord of the Rings, James Cameron and Steven Spielberg. In 1992, he received special Oscar for his work with special effects in days just before computer-generated imagery. The animator, Ray Harryhausen donated his overall collection, around 20000 objects to National Media Museum in Bradford in the year 2010. His work was also celebrated at the London's Museum of the Moving Image (MOMI) in 1990. The primary screening theater at Sony Pictures Digital Productions was named in the honour of this animator, in the year 2010. He was inducted in the Science Fiction Hall of Fame in 2005. He won the annual British Fantasy Society Wagner Award in 2008 for the lifetime contribution to animation. In 2003, he was honoured with star on the Hollywood Walk of Fame.

Inter-Ministerial Group Constituted to tackle Fraudulent Money Pooling Activities via Ponzi Schemes
The Union Government of India on 7 May 2013 constituted an Inter-Ministerial Group to suggest the possible ways to tackle with the fraudulent money pooling activities and protect the investors interest in the same. Members of the inter-ministerial group will comprise of representatives from the Finance and Corporate Affairs Ministries, Reserve Bank of India (RBI) and Securities and Exchange Board of India (SEBI). The decision to constitute a Inter-Ministerial Group was taken in wake up of the instances of people being defrauded by Ponzi Schemes like the Kolkata-based Saradha Group cheating in which many investors were fooled via fraudulent money pooling schemes. Ponzi Schemes are activities that involve collecting money from public (investors) on a large scale making fraud promises of big returns. These are paid from the money that is paid by the new investors and in this type of scheme the old investors get big returns by bringing in new investors.

India at Top in List of 1st Day Deaths of Infants: State of the Worlds Mothers Report 2013
State of the Worlds Mothers report 2013 released in first week of May 2013 reported that India holds the record of first day death of newborns than any other country of the world. As per the latest report released, India accounts to more than 309300 deaths of new born on the first day and accounts to 29 percent of the global population. The basic reason for the deaths of the infants of the first day as per the records of the report are the complications associated with the preterm birth, maternal health and hygiene standards. The report is based on the survey done on 186 countries came up with the finding that South Asia that accounts for about 24 percent of worlds population recorded 40 percent of the first day death of child. As per the report, the first day death occurs mainly in 10 countries of which the most populated countries like India and Indonesia. Others countries placed high in the list are Pakistan, Afghanistan and African nations like Nigeria and Ethiopia. The developed countries accounts for only 1 percent of the global first-day deaths. Bangladesh and Pakistan also have a high rate of deaths at 28000 abd 60000 respectively. These deaths are the reason of chronic malnourishment of the mother and other fatalities of the reason. Despite being more populated, China ranks 4th and accounts for only 5% of the global share of first-day deaths.


Identified causes for the first day death of the child includes: Complications during birth Prematurity and infections, low birth weight (28% of babies in India are underweight) Limited access to low-cost, life-saving interventions as the access could cut down the figures by as much as 75 percent Early marriage and childbearing heightens the risk for babies further. In India 47 percent girls are married off by the age of 18 As per the report the reason for the deaths in South Asia is the availability of just 14 doctors or nurses over every 10000 people. In the category of Maternal deaths, India is placed at 142nd position among 176 countries with 56000 maternal deaths per year.

MoU Signed Between NCW and HUDCO for Improving Living Conditions of Destitute Women
A Memorandum of Understanding (MoU) was signed between National Commission for Women (NCW) and HUDCO on 7 May 2013 in New Delhi. The MoU was signed by V P Baligar, IAS, Chairman & Managing Director (HUDCO) and K. Ratna Prabha, IAS, Member Secretary, National Commission for Women (NCW). The MoU was signed to improve living conditions of destitute women. Major points of the MoU The importance of the MoU is that both the Ministries will be cooperating in elevating the condition and status of the marginalized and destitute women in India. This MoU is a part of Corporate Social Responsibility of HUDCO, under which focus will remain on providing better amenities of housing and other facilities such as drinking water, sanitation and electricity to poor and destitute women. HUDCO and NCW, under the MoU, agreed to co-operate and work together by utilizing their respective strengths for improvement of the living conditions of destitute women and also facilities like women hostels and remand homes. The two bodies entered into the MoU for improving the living conditions of destitute women on anything that is related to women welfare or development by enhancing the quality of their habitat. HUDCO and NCW shall cooperate in the areas of re-construction of existing structures where women in distress are housed, providing for living quarters, kitchens and toilets, construction of living quarters, kitchens and toilets in pre-identified sites. Under the MoU, NCW shall identify the areas where the activity or project has to be undertaken and HUDCO shall provide financial assistance for implementation of these projects along with technical advice.

3rd National Awards for Technology Innovation in Petrochemical and Downstream Presented
The Union Minister of State (Independent charge) for Chemicals & Fertilizers and Statistics & Programme Implementation Srikant Kumar Jena presented 3rd National Awards for Technology Innovation in Petrochemical and Downstream, Plastic Processing Industry in New Delhi on 7 May 2013. The awards were given away to winners for their outstanding contribution in the fields of Polymeric Material, Polymeric Products, Polymer Processing Machinery & Equipment, Polymer Waste Management & Recycling Technology, Polymeric Materials & Products, Polymers in Agriculture and Water Conservation, Green Polymers in Public Health care and Research in the field of Polymer Science & Technology. The awards were aimed at recognizing the innovations in niche areas of petrochemicals and plastics processing. The award included a shield, a citation as well as cash prize of 2 lakh Rupees. The runners-up received a shield and a citation. National Policy on Petrochemicals and Introduction of the Awards The National Policy on Petrochemicals was approved in April 2007 by the Government of India. The aim of the policy was increasing investment, competitiveness, and Research & Development efforts in thrust areas of polymeric materials. The award scheme was introduced by the Department of Chemicals & Petrochemicals (DCPC), Government of India to incentivize meritorious innovations and inventions in various fields of Polymer Science and Technology, by Individual/Team, Industry, Academic and R&D Institutions. The aim of these awards is development of petrochemical industry as a globally competitive industry. The implementation of scheme of National Award for Technology Innovation in Petrochemicals & Downstream Plastic Processing Industry is entrusted with the Central Institute of Plastics Engineering and Technology (CIPET), an autonomous institute under DCPC.


About the 3rd National Awards In 3rd National Awards, 306 nominations were received which were scrutinized and evaluated by a committee of experts consisting of academicians, members from the Industry, experts from R&D institutions. Out of these, 11 nominations were selected as the winners, 8 nominations were chosen as the runners-up and 6 were recommended for Commendation Certificate for Technology Innovation in Petrochemicals and Downstream Plastic Processing Industries in the third year of its operation in 2012-13. List of the winners Gharda Chemicals Ltd., for An Economical Process to Manufacture ABPBI (2.5 Polybenzimidazole) parts in the Industry category of Innovation in Polymeric Materials. Anindya Deb, Centre for Product Design And Manufacturing, Indian Institute of Science for Nanoclay -Polypropylene Based Enhanced Automotive Upper Interior Head Impact Safety Protection in the Individual / Team category of Innovation in Polymeric Products. Shriji Polymers (India) Pvt. Ltd., for their innovation of Child Resistant Cap in the Industry category of Innovation in Polymeric Products. M. J. Giridharan, C. G. Enterprises, for Multiport HDPE Saddle Welding Machine in the Individual / Team category of Innovation of Polymer Processing Machinery & Equipments. CSIR- Indian Institute of Petroleum for Technology to Convert Waste Plastics (Polyolefins) to Automotive Grade Fuel and Petrochemicals in the Academics and R&D Institution category of Innovation In Polymer Waste Management & Recycling Technology. Team comprising Dr. S.T. Mhaske, Vilas S. Karande & Niranjan R. Savadekar from Institute of Chemical Technology for their innovation Synthesis of Nanocellulose (Nanowhiskers and Nanofibers) and its Applications in Biopolymers to Enhance their Performance Properties in the Academics and R&D Institution category of Innovation In Green Polymeric Materials & Products. Reliance Industries Ltd. for Polymeric Packaging for Extending Shelf Life of Agriculture, Floriculture and Horticulture Produce in the Industry category of Polymers In Agriculture And Water Conservation. Team comprising Mr. Jandas P. J., Dr. Smita Mohanty & Prof. S. K. Nayak from Laboratory for Advanced Research in Polymeric Materials (LARPM)-CIPET for their innovation Polyimide Based Piezoelectric-Induced Pressure Pulse (PIPP) Films for MEMS Applications in the Academics and R&D Institution category of Innovation in Polymeric Materials. Mohana Orthotics and Prosthetics Center for Plastics in the field of Physically Handicapped in the Industry category of Polymers in Public Health Care. Niranjan Karak, Tezpur University for Biodegradable Tough Transparent Novel Hyperbranched Polyurethanes from Vegetable Oils in the Individual / Team category of Research in the Field of Polymer Science & Technology. Prof. Mangala Joshi from Indian Institute of Technology-Delhi and Dr. Amitava Bhattacharyya, PSG Institute of Advanced Studies for Polyurethane / Nanographite based Multifunctional Coatings for Defense Applications in the Academics and R&D Institution category of Research in the Field of Polymer Science & Technology. List of the Runners - Up Dr. S Anitha & Dr. T. S. Natarajan from Indian Institute of Technology Madras for Development of Electrospun Nanocomposite Smart Material in the Academics and R&D Institution category of Innovation In Polymeric Materials. Sachin Joshi, Mohit Mehta & Sarojini Swain of Crompton Greaves Limited for the innovation of Mild Steel Based Storage Water Heater Tank, Inside Coated with Specially Developed Nano Based Liquid Polymer Applied by 2 Axis Synchronized Robotic Painting System in the Industry category of Innovation in Polymeric Products. Manoharmayum Manihar Sharma for the innovation of Solar Multi Silk and Mugha Reeling cum Spinning Machine in the Individual / Team category of Innovation Of Polymer Processing Machinery & Equipments. CSIR-Central Electronics Engineering Research Institute for On-line Sorting of Consumer Plastic Groups through Near Infrared Spectroscopy in the Academics and R&D Institution category of Innovation In Polymer Waste Management & Recycling Technology. Sridevi Avancha, Ajaya Kumar Behera, Ramkrishna Sen & Dr. Basudam Adhikari of IITKharagpur for the innovation of Biodegradable and Eco-friendly Jute Soy Composite and Sapling pot in the Academics and R&D Institution category of Innovation In Green Polymeric Materials & Products. Godavari Polymers Pvt. Ltd. for Break through Techniques in Drip in Line Lateral Design in the Industry category of Polymers in Agriculture and Water Conservation.


Dr. K. P. Chellamani, D. Veerasubramanian & R. S. Vignesh Balaji from The South India Textile Research Association for the innovation of Barbed Bi-directional Surgical Sutures in the Industry category of Polymers In Public Health Care. Prof. Pralay Maiti, Prof. Nira Misra & Mr. Govinda Kapusetti from IIT (BHU) for the innovation of Polymer Based Nanobiocomposites for Faster Bone Healing in the Academics and R&D Institution category of Research In The Field Of Polymer Science & Technology.

Profulla Borua, the Veteran Indian Journalist Passed Away in Guwahati

Profulla Borua, the veteran Indian journalist passed away in Guwahati, Assam after prolonged illness on 6 May 2013. He was 75 years of age. He died after a fight with cancer. About Profulla Borua Profulla Borua held the post of the editor in some of the prominent Assamese newspapers. In his career span of 50 years, he had dynamic spirit of journalism. From 1969 to 1986, he was the editor of Janambhumi, the prominent newspaper of North East. He was also the editor of Dainik Asam from 1987-95. Lately, he was the editor of Uddipam, which is the only weekly for the senior citizens of northeastern region. He was also the executive trustee of celebration and documentation of 150 years of newspapers in Assam by Media Trust. He was arrested twice in 1981 and 1983 while fighting for Press independence.

World Bank agreed Grant of 100mn USD to Afghanistan for Expansion of Health Services
The World Bank on 7 May 2013 announced that it will provide grant of 100 million US dollar to Afghanistan for expansion of the basic health and essential hospital services in the country. The World Bank and Afghan Government released a press statement on the agreement reached and signed between the two to this effect at Kabul. World Banks International Development Association (IDA) will provide the grant with an aim to help the Afghan Public Health Ministry for its System Enhancement Health Action in Transition (SEHAT) program. Afghanistan will use the grant for expansion of the scope and quality of the basic health and essential hospital services across the nation, which includes 22 rural and urban areas of its 34 provinces. It will also strengthen the National Health System by developing the capacity of the Public Health Ministry. Afghanistan has made a steady progress in the health sector in the past decade. The facilities of health in 11 targeted provinces of Afghanistan has also tripled in a decades time from 148 to 432 as per official records, with about 20000 trained community health workers. The number of facilities with trained female health workers rose from 25 percent before the project to 74 percent today. The functional health care facilities in Afghanistan has gone up to 2000 from 496 and thus resulted in significant improvement in the coverage of reproductive and child health services, there has been a marked drop in maternal and child mortality.

The Union Government Cleared 2000 Crore Rupees Project for Juhu Airport Redevelopment
The Union Government of India decided to redevelop the Juhu Airport of Mumbai by extending runway 650 metres into sea. This has been done to ease the congestion of traffic at Chhatrapati Shivaji International (CSI) Airport. It is worth noticing that this is the first ever kind of a project in India where the realigning and extension of the runway would be done into the sea. The government planned that the Juhu runway would be operational by 2017. It is forecasted that by 2017, the CSI Airport would become completely saturated. The Juhu Airport thus would cater to the small turboprop and the private jets along with ATR operations that encompass approximately 15 percent of total operations of CSI Airport. This means that there would be a diversion in aircraft movement from CSI to Juhu Airport by around 15 percent. Apart from this, the Juhu Airport would also cater to the helicopter operations with its second and smaller runway. The cost of the project is estimated to be somewhere around 2000 crore Rupees. The Juhu Airport runway will run parallel to CSI main runway. Both these airports would be able to take on landings as well as take offs simultaneously. The decision on whether this project would be taken up by public-private partnership or Airports Authority of India (AAI) is yet to be decided. Feasibility options for Juhu Airport development were studied at a recent meeting of AAI, Maharashtra government officials as well as Aviation Ministry.


The Aviation Ministry explained that the Bandra Versova sea-link as well as redevelopment of Juhu Airport projects would be done in such a way that both these can co-exist. Concerns over environmental issues and hampering of Juhu Beach area would be considered as well.

Sahara Created New World Record of Largest Group to Sing National Anthem at One Place
Lucknow, UP: Sahara India Pariwar created a new Guinness World Record on 6 May 2013 when its 121653 staff and workers sang Indias national anthem Jana Gana Mana in union at Lucknow. The present world record is in the account of Pakistan where 42813 people sang national anthem in a group at one place. Apart from this, Sahara India Pariwar had also attempted the record of more than one million employees singing the national anthem in one uniform at 4512 offices of Sahara spread in India. Sahara came to be recognised on the global map through acquisition of Plaza Hotel in New York and London's Grosvenor House hotel. The representatives of Guinness World Record witnessed the moment and confirmed the world record. Subrata Roy Sahara, the Chairman of Sahara India Pariwar was conferred with the certificate by officials of Guinness Book of World Records.

Russia and USA announced Commitment to Negotiate to End Syrian Conflict

Foreign Minister of Russia, Sergei Lavrov and Secretary of United States John Kerry announced their commitments to a negotiated settlement for the end of the conflict of Syria at Moscow on 7 May 2013. The two have pushed forward for an international conference on the crisis situation. The decision came up after the talks that lasted for hours between the Visiting US Secretary of State John Kerry and Russian President Vladimir Putin further proceeded by the Russian Foreign Minister Sergei Lavrov in a bid to lessen the differences between Washington and Russia over the Syrian Conflict. Both the nations will try to come up with an international conference over the conflict of Syria and will try to convince the regime as well as the rebels to accept the terms of Geneva that was agreed and suggested by the world powers in June 2012. Geneva agreement was reached by the world leaders on 30 May 2012 by setting up the path towards the formation of the transitional Government in Syria, without declaring the fate of President Bashar al-Assad. The International Conference will aim at bringing together the leaders of the government and the opposition at one platform to come up with a negotiated settlement of issue, to end the bloodshed in Syria.

Foreign Exchange Earnings from Tourism grew by 7 percent in April 2013

The Foreign Exchange Earnings (FEEs) from tourism in terms of Rupee in April 2013 rose by seven percent from the one recorded in April 2012. The Foreign Tourists Arrival (FTAs) in April 2013 remained the same 4.52 lakh with the one recorded in April 2012. The FTAs in a quarters time from January to April 2013 has risen by 1.9 percent to 24.80 lakh. In January to April 2012 the FTAs were 24.34 lakh. Highlights of the FTAs and FEEs during April 2013 from Tourism Foreign Tourist Arrivals (FTAs) In April 2013 the number of FTAs was 4.52 lakh, while, the number of FTAs in April 2012, was also 4.52 lakh. There was no growth in FTAs recorded in April 2013, whereas, the FTAs grew by 1.3 percent during April 2012 over April 2011. Foreign Exchange Earnings (FEEs) from Tourism in rupee terms and USdollars terms During the month of April 2013 the FEEs was 7248 crore rupees, which was 6745 crore rupees in April 2012 and 5724 crore rupees in April 2011. In terms of rupees the FEEs grew by 7.5 percent in April 2013 over April2012 as compared to 17.8 percent of April 2012 over April 2011 The FEEs in terms of rupee from tourism from January to April 2013 is 37323 crore rupee with a growth of 17.7 percent as compared to the FEE of 31713 crore rupees with a growth of 28.5 percent during January-April 2012 over the corresponding period of 2011. In terms of USDs the FEEs during the month of April 2013 were 1.333 billion US dollar as compared to FEEs of 1.305 billion US dollars during the month of April 2012 and 1.290 billion US dollars in April 2011.


The FEEs grew by 2.1 percent in terms of US dollars in April 2013 over April 2012. It was 1.2 percent in April 2012 over April 2011. FEE from tourism in terms of US dollars during January-April 2013 were US dollars 6.878 billion with a growth of 9.6 percent, as compared to US dollars 6.275 billion with a growth of 14.7 percent during January-April 2012 over the corresponding period of 2011. The monthly estimates of FTAs are compiled by the Ministry of Tourism and are made based upon the data received from the major ports and the FEEs from tourism on the basis of data received from Reserve Bank of India.

Moska Najib Shortlisted for Australia's Best Job in the World Competition
Afghan Women, Moska Najib is among the 25 shortlisted for one of the best jobs of the world in the Australia's 'Best Job in the World competition. The 29 year old Moska Najib is a documentary film maker and photographer by profession. The Delhi based Moska is the only Afghan to beat 6 lakh applicants in the race and if she wins the race by gaining the job, she will earn 100000 Australian dollars in six months.

India Nominated Hill Forts of Rajasthan and Himalayan National Park for World Heritage
Rajasthan and Great Himalayan National Park: India nominated cluster of six hill forts in Rajasthan as well as Great Himalayan National Park in Himachal Pradesh for World Heritage Sites for 2013. The UNESCOs World Heritage Committee will be held in Phnom Penh in Cambodia in June 2013 and conferring the status of World Heritage Sites on these places will be decided in this meeting. Hill forts of Rajasthan Hill forts at six places Amber, Chittorgarh, Gagron, Jaisalmer, Kumbhalgarh and Ranthambore are showcase of the military architecture of Rajput, which are seen in memorials, temples as well as palaces. These forts were built between 13th and 19th century and they are absolutely unique in the region. The Great Himalayan National Park The Great Himalayan National Park is spread over 75400 hectares and is situated in western part of the Himalayan Mountains in Kullu District. This rich in biodiversity site is one of the most scenic places of India. It nests 25 forest types and supports 805 different varieties of plants. It also hosts 31 mammal species and 209 kinds of birds. The International Council on Monuments and Sites (ICOMOS) evaluates cultural properties for UNESCO. These sites were inspected by ICOMOS in 2012 and final recommendation will be given by 17 May 2013. Overall, India has 29 World Heritage Sites; out of which 23 are cultural 6 are natural properties.

09-MAY-2013 Congress won in Karnataka Assembly Elections 2013; Claimed 121 seats of 223
Karnataka Elections: Congress Secured 121 seats of the 223 Seats to emerge as winner. Congress on 8 May 2013 won 121 seats of the 223 seats on which polls were contested in Karnataka Assembly Elections 2013, the elections were held on 5 May 2013. Congress returned back to power after seven years in the state. The party of opposition BJP and Janta-Dal secular managed to win 40 seats each. The Results of Karnataka Elections: Status known for 223 of 224 constituencies Congress - won 121 BJP - won 40 Janata Dal (Secular) - won 40 Samajwadi Party - won 1 KJP - 6 Others - won 15 Parties like Karnataka Janatha Party of BS Yeddyurappa and the BSR Congress of B Sriramulu were reduced to single digits in context of seats. Whereas, Samajwadi party managed to secure Chennapatna seat and opened its account for the first time in the state. The major setbacks of the election were the defeat of defeat of former State President of BJP K S Eshwarappa and Karnataka State Congress President G Parameshwar. After the results were declared, Chief Minister Jagadish Shetter submitted his resignation to the Governor of the state


following the defeat of his party in the state. In 2008, BJP came to power in the state for the first time after winning 110 seats against congress 80 seats and JDs 28 in the 224 member house. Polling was held on 223 seats in the state. Date for polls in the Periyapatna in Mysore district was postponed to 28 May 2013 following death of a BJP candidate Sannagoge Gowda on 1 May 2013. Removal of BS Yeddyurappa from the Chief Minister's post and his decision to form his own party were identified as the two major reasons for the huge defeat suffered by BJP in Karnataka, considered to be a gateway to South India for BJP.

Sanaullah Ranjay, the Pakistani Prisoner died at PGI Chandigarh

Sanaullah Ranjay, the Pakistani prisoner who was attacked by a jail inmate in Kot Bhalwal jail in Jammu died due to multi-organ failure at the PGI Hospital in Chandigarh on 9 May 2013. Sanaullah was attacked by a fellow inmate on 3 May 2013 after the death of Sarabjit Singh an Indian Prisoner in Jinnah Hospital Lahore after he was assaulted and attacked by his jail inmates in Kot Lakhpat Jail in Pakistan. Sanaullah was in prison for the past 17 years on militancy related charges. He was attacked by a former Indian army soldier. Sanuallah was a resident of Sialkot, Pakistan and was serving a life term in India after being convicted under the TADA provisions. He was arrested in 1999. Sarabjit Singh under Coma: He was attacked in Lahore Jail Sarabjit Singh Died in Lahore's Jinnah Hospital in Pakistan

Solar Impulse, the Sun-Powered Aircraft Completed First Leg of Journey to Cross US
Solar Impulse, the plane powered by Sun completed its first leg of journey with an aim to cross US. The plane took off from San Francisco, California on 3 May 2013 and landed in Phoenix, Arizona on 4 May 2013. It is planned that Solar Impulse will also halt in Dallas, St Louis, Washington DC and New York. The wingspan of the plane is similar to that of Airbus A340, but its weight is merely 1.6 tonnes. Solar Impulse already completed a flight which lasted more than 26 hours. The aim is now to circumnavigate it around the world in 2015. This indicated that Solar Impulse spent a lot of hours in darkness and relied only on energy which was stored in a range of lithium-ion batteries, used to drive the propellers. In the daylight, these lithium-ion batteries were charged by around 12000 solar cells which cover the wings as well as stabilizer of the plane. Bertrand Piccard, the co-founder of this plane project was the pilot of HB-SIA craft. He is also the same person who circumnavigated the globe in hot air balloon in 1999. This is the first ever attempt of America to create zero-fuel aircraft. At present, the HB-SIA aircraft is the prototype of plane which will be used for round-the-world trips as well as transoceanic flights. By the end of 2013, HB-SIB will be completed. The Solar Impulse is said to be the Clean Generation Initiative of the creators. This would serve as an effort for encouraging the policy makers as well as businesses for the development as well as adoption of sustainable energy technologies. What is Solar Impulse? Solar Impulse is the Swiss long-range solar-powered project. The aim of this project is to circumnavigate the globe with the use of just solar power. Bertrand Piccard as well as Swiss businessman Andr Borschberg led the project. Successful solar flights were conducted by Piccard and Borschberg in 2012 from Switzerland to Spain and Morocco. In 2013, successful flight was taken within USA.

Cancer deaths dropped by 60000 through Cancer Prevention Measures: Cancer Council
A research conducted by the New South Wales Cancer Council in the second week of May 2013 came up with a conclusion that 60000 people in the country have been saved through Cancer Prevention Measures over the past 20 years. The researchers in the study compared the recent deaths with cancer with the deaths reported in 1980s. After studying the two cases, the group came up with a conclusion that the overall deaths due to cancer were reduced by 30 percent. The largest deaths reductions were seen in bowel, lung and breast cancers. The latest advances in cancer prevention, treatment and screening have improved, whereas there are scopes of improvements in brain, palate and pancreatic cancers.


Union Government set 325-billion Dollars Export Target for 2013-14

The Union Government announced an export target of 325 billion dollars for the current financial year 2013-14 to support the slowdown in the global markets. It is due to the global slowdown in developed regions like that of US and Europe, the exports of India went down for the first time in three years with a dip of 1.8 per cent to 300.6 billion Dollars in 2012-13, making the trade deficit to a record high level of 191 billion dollars. It is important here to note that, the Government had set an export target of 360-billion dollars for the financial year 2012-13. According to the provisional figures, export registered an increase of 0.8 per cent for the month of January 2013 after a permanent fall during May, June, July, August, September, October, November and December 2012.

Hindi Story Writer and Playwright Surendra Tiwari Died

Hindi story writer and playwright Surendra Tiwari died due to brain haemorrhage on 7 May 2013. He was 64 years of age. He is survived by his wife, two sons and a daughter. About Surendra Tiwari Surendra Tiwari wrote and edited 25 books in all. He also edited 51 stories of Nobel Prize winners as well as 10 volumes of stories of 251 female storytellers. He wrote various plays during his career, which included Deewarein, Ek Aur Raja and Chabutra. In 1974, his first story collection called Doosra Footpath, was published. In the year 1975, his play called Deewarein was published. His renowned novels included Agniparv and Antatah. He also served in the Indian Information Service. He served in AIR Publications Department as well as Registrars Office of the newspapers. He was born on 8 October 1948 in Ballia, Uttar Pradesh.

Union Government of India approved National Cyber Security Policy

The Union Government of India on 8 May 2013 approved a National Cyber Security Policy with an aim to create a secured computing environment across the country. The Policy also aims towards building the capacities to strengthen the current set-up and increase the focus on manpower training. The policy was approved by the Cabinet Committee on Security (CCS) that lays stress on augmentation of the Indias indigenous capabilities in terms of developing the cyber security set-up. The policy also caters to every spectrum of ICT users and service providers as it includes home as well as small users, medium and large enterprises and government and non-government entities. The policy also aims at the creation of the cyber security framework to address all related issues pending over a long period. The set framework will also enhance the security posture of the countries cyber space via specific actions and programmes. Cyber Security Policy will also help in enhancing the intelligence as its integral component and help in anticipating attacks and adopt, counter measures.

Researchers Discovered a New Species of Dinosaur; the Oldest in North America

Researchers of University of Toronto discovered a new species of dinosaur, which according to them is oldest in North America, or possible even the world. This is the bone-headed, dog-sized herbivorous dinosaur species which had a skull shaped like a dome and is called Acrotholus. The researchers unveiled that this new species of dinosaur fills gap in the family tree of dinosaur. The researchers explained that there were some other small dinosaurs such as Acrotholus audeti that await discovery. The kind of dinosaur unearthed is scientifically called pachycephalosaurs. Pachycephalosaurs are the kinds of dinosaurs that are like thick-headed lizards or bone-headed dinosaurs. These are a very strage group of dinosaurs, which are herbivorous and have thick-boned dome over their skulls. About Acrotholus Acrotholus, according to researchers, is almost the size of large dog. It weighed around 40 kg, walked on two legs as well as had the skull which is composed of solid bone that is more than 10cm thick. The discovery of the fossil of this new dinosaur offers a lot of information about the evolution of bone-headed dinosaurs.


It is worth noticing that information about the diversity of small dinosaurs (weighing less than 100 kg) is very limited because they are under-represented in fossil record.

Government of Tamil Nadu banned Pan Masala, Gutka in the State

The Tamil Nadu Government in the month of May 2013 had banned the production, possession, distribution and sale of tobacco products such as pan masala and gutka in the State. It is worth mentioning here that in some states, which includes Kerala and Andhra Pradesh, there is already a ban on the sale of pan masala and gutka. Making its own motion statement in the Assembly on 8 May 2013 Chief Minister of Tamil Nadu J. Jayalalithaa denoted to the Supreme Courts remarks in a case pending before it, looking for to know the action taken by state governments in controlling the usage of tobacco and announced the governments decision. J. Jayalalithaa had also mentioned to her Governments notification on 19 November 2011, to ban the use of tobacco under the Prevention of Food Adulteration Act, 1954, for five years, on which the Supreme Court ruled that the Centre alone had the powers to issue such notifications. The Government had constituted a separate department Tamil Nadu Food Safety and Medical Administration, after the Centre announced the Food Safety and Standards Act.

IISC designed a New Concept of Vaccine Delivery System

The Indian Institute of Science (IISc) designed and successfully tested a new concept of needleless vaccine delivery system in the laboratory. IISc has become the only organization in the world that has developed such a device. The new device was the result of collaboration among the laboratory for hypersonic and shock wave, the department of aerospace engineering, and the microbiology and cell biology department of the Indian Institute of Science. Typhoid vaccine was successfully delivered into mice in laboratory using the new technique. The device utilizes the instantaneous mechanical impulse produced by micro-blast waves to achieve delivery of vaccines into mice. A negligible amount of chemical energy is used to generate the micro-blast wave inside a small disposable plastic tube. Since the depth of penetration of drug below the skin is not much, animals do not feel the pain during vaccine delivery. The trials on animals have proved that by using this device a lesser quantity of vaccines is sufficient to provide resistance to animals against in comparison to conventional methods. The new system is safe, economical and painless.

India is the largest Producer and Consumer of Chickpeas in World

Food & Agriculture Organization (FAO) in its latest report for 2011 claimed that India is the largest consumer and producer of Chickpeas in the world. The second advance estimates for 201213 marked a record production of Chickpea is 8567.8 thousand tonnes. Production details of Chickpeas in India as compared to the World Chickpea producing nation:
Country India Australia Myanmar Turkey Ethiopia Pakistan Islamic Republic of Iran Canada United Republic of Tanzania Production (000 tonnes) 8221.1 513.34 466.74 487.48 322.84 496 290.24 90.8 71.18

Systematic and concentrated research on Chickpeas is undertaken by Indian Council of Agricultural Research (ICAR) through its on-going plan projects under Indian Institute of Pulses Research (IIPR), Kanpur and All India Coordinated Research Project on Chickpea. In past three years, thirteen types of high yielding varieties of chickpeas have been released in India. Creation of basic and strategic research for development of location specific climate supporting high yielding chickpea varieties and improved production and protection technologies are the ma-


jor steps included in the research program. Several Crop development schemes like Food Security Mission (NFSM-Pulses), Rashtriya Krishi Vikas Yojana (RKVY) and others are implemented by the Government of India in order to increase the production and productivity of Pulses including Chickpeas. Special Plan to achieve more than 19 million tonnes of pulse production during 2012-13 has also been initiated.

ESA Gave Green Signal to Biomass Satellite to Monitor the Forests of Earth
The European Space Agency (ESA) gave a green signal to Biomass, the satellite that can weigh the forests of the Earth. Biomass would be launched in 2020. The Earth Observation Programme Board of ESA approved 400 million Euro for the Biomass mission on 7 May 2013. Biomass will carry the state-of-the-art radar system which can sense trunks as well as the branches of the trees from orbit. This satellite will be used by the scientists for calculating the carbon amount stored in forests of the world. It will also be used for monitoring the changes in the forests during its five-year mission. The data from the satellite will be used by the scientists to understand role of trees in cycling of carbon on Earth and that how it affects the climate of our planet. The scientists explained that this would in turn help in formation of the treaties which would help the developing countries in preservation of the forests by undertaking measures such as UN Reducing Emissions from Deforestation and forest Degradation (REDD+) initiative. Biomass will be the seventh satellite of ESAs Earth Explorers, a series of the spacecrafts which are designed for innovative science. So far, ESA has sent its three missions in the orbit, which sent back vital information such as ocean salinity, soil moisture, polar ice cover and gravity. The spacecraft that will study the magnetic field of the Earth will be launched by the ESA in 2013. The satellites under this mission will study wind as well as fine particles in atmosphere. Features of Biomass Biomass is the 1.2-tonne satellite at the launch, which means that it would go into the orbit through new Vega rocket of ESA. The sole instrument of Biomass will send 70 cm radar pulse on the Earth which will penetrate the canopies of forests but will scatter into large woody parts of the trees. Biomass will sense volume of the material at resolution of around 200 m. Basically; it will help in weighing the amount of carbon associated with the forests of the world. The 12 m reflector antenna will capture return signal from radar. At present, Biomass is not permitted to operate on Europe, Arctic and North America. This is so because the US Department of Defense (DoD) warned that the radar of Biomass would interfere with the missile early-warning as well as space tracking systems. The Natural Environment Research Council (Nerc) of UK funded the basic science which underpinned the concept of Biomass. Britain is senior partner of Earth observation programme of ESA. It will play a crucial industrial role in biomass mission.

Benefits of Exposing Skin to Sun Can Outweigh Risks of Skin Cancer: Research
Edinburgh University research suggested that the benefits of exposing the skin to sun can outweigh the risks posed to health. The research indicated that sunlight is useful for reducing the blood pressure, stroke risks as well as risks of heart attack. It can even prolong the life. It was found that the ultraviolet rays exposed from the sun release a compound called nitric oxide which can lower the blood pressure. The heart strokes as well as heart diseases which are associated with high BP can prove to be 80 times more fatal than the deaths due to skin cancer in UK. Nitric Oxide production is different from the manufacturing of vitamin D in human body. Vitamin D can be increased in the body after exposure to the sunlight. During their research, the researchers studied blood pressure of 24 volunteers under heat and UV lamps. In a single session, these volunteers were exposed to heat of the lamps as well as the UV rays. In the other session, volunteers were not exposed to the UV rays and so, they were exposed only to the heat of lamps. The result indicated that volunteers exposed to UV rays during one hour session had significant drop in the blood pressure level, than that of heat-only sessions. The researchers thus suggested that the UV rays of the sun can lead to benefits. During both the sessions, the level of Vitamin D remained unaffected. The study will be presented in Edinburgh on 10 May 2013 at largest gathering of the skin experts, International Investigative Dermatology conference.


Maruti Launched Limited Edition Ertiga Trim Called Feliz

Maruti on 9 May 2013 launched a limited edition trim of the Ertiga called the Feliz, in celebration of the MPVs first anniversary. It is available in the VXi and VDi variants at prices of 6.89 lakh rupees and 8.24 lakh rupees respectively, which is 20000 rupees higher than the regular Maruti Ertiga. Ertigas exteriors include features in the form of a silver colored grille, silver colored rear-view mirrors (which have integrated indicators), and a pair of silver colored fog lamps. There are changes to the body graphics on the side, and a rear spoiler was also added. Ertigas interior features have also been changed. These are in the form of beige steering wheel, seat covers and floor mats with branding, a different music system, an interior display kit and new door sill guards.

British Parliament agreed to Outlaw Caste Discrimination

The British parliament finally agreed to outlaw caste discrimination by amending the Equality Act 2010. The Act prohibited race discrimination, harassment and victimisation in the workplace, till now. The definition of race mentioned in the Act includes colour, ethnic or national origin and nationality but makes no specific reference to caste. The British parliament finally voted for legal protection for the four lakh dalits residing in the country. With this step, UK has become the first country outside South Asia to legislate against caste discrimination. The legislation will protect thousands of people, who has suffered abuse and prejudice because they were considered low caste. The issue has created a divide among the Indian diaspora in the UK.The groups like Caste Watch UK are rallying to urge MPs to introduce legal protection for those from traditionally lowercaste backgrounds wheras the Hindu Alliance called for a boycott of the amendment. According to the 2011 census, there are 81633 Hindus are living in UK.

Union Minister of Culture Launched 13 Short Films Based on Tagores Poems

The Union Minister of Culture, Chandresh Kumari Katoch launched 13 short films based on the poems of Rabindranath Tagore in New Delhi on 9 May 2013. All the films have been produced with the financial support of Ministry of Culture. Buddhadeb Dasgupta, the noted Director directed these 13 short films through the National Film Development Corporation. The project of Production of 13 short films or documentaries is a part of commemoration celebrating 150th Birth Anniversary of Rabindranath Tagore. The Screening Committee was constituted under the Chairmanship of Shyam Benegal in order to examine film production and related proposals for the commemoration. All the 13 short films are of 25-30 minutes time duration. These are based on the Tagores poems namely, Bansi (The Flute), Krishnakali (The Dark Maiden), Mukti (The Freedom), Phanki (Deception), Pukur Dhare (From the pool side), Ek Gaye (A Village), Camellia (Camellia), Banshiwallah (The Flutist), Shesh Chithi (The Last Letter), Hothat Dekha (The Unexpected Meeting), Patralekha (The letter ought to be written), Basha Bari (The mansion) and Istition (The Station). The films depict the Tagores humanism as well as creativity in him. The films reflect a wide range of his intellectual thinking from Romance to Philosophy and tradition to the contemporary ills. Rabindranath Tagore is known across the world for his literary and artistic genius, creativity, humanism and internationalism.

Delhi Development Authority (DDA) cleared 26 New Areas for Development

The Delhi development authority on 8 May 2013 had declared Twenty-six villages as development areas which are identified as low density residential areas under the farmhouse policy. A resolution in this regard was passed at a DDA meeting. Now, the DDA will be responsible for regularisation of farmhouses and providing of civic amenities in these low density residential areas. It is being considered as a necessary step to ensure overall integrated development of urbanisable area under the recently approved land pooling policy and also the planned development of low density areas like farmhouses, country homes, etc, to declare villages identified as low density residential areas as development areas of DDA. The DDA has drawn up a list of 26 villages for development under a policy that seeks to regularise farmhouses built before 2 February, 2007, including built-up area beyond permissible limits, by levying penalty charges.


The funds that will be collected through levy for regularisation of existing farmhouses are supposed to be shared by DDA and MCD as per modalities decided by the Centre. Also, In another development, there is plan of providing more floor area ratio (FAR) to the city hospitals based on the width of the right of way of the road outside and subject to no-objection certificates from agencies concerned.

Srinivasan Venkatakrishnan Appointed as the New CEO of Anglogold Ashanti

Srinivasan Venkatakrishnan, also known as Venkat was on 9 May 2013 appointed as the new Chief Executive Officer of South Africas AngloGold Ashanti. Venkat has remained with the Johannesburg headquartered AngloGold Ashanti for nine years. At present, he is the finance head of the company. Venkat replaced Mark Cutifani who quit in April 2013. Venkat was the Chief Financial Officer at Ashanti Goldfields. Later, Ashanti Goldfields merged with the AngloGold Limited in May 2004, which eventually created AngloGold Ashanti. With the merger of these two companies, Venkat became the CFO of the combined company. He held Associate Chartered Accountant degree from Universidad Pontificia Comillas de Madrid. The company announced that he will continue to hold the position of CFO at AngloGold Ashanti, till notified further. AngloGold Ashanti is the gold mining company at international level. It has 20 operations on four continents. The company produced 3.944 million ounces of gold in 2012. In gold income, it generated 6.35 billion US dollar.

Arab League agreed to Israel-Palestine Land Swap Agreement

Arab nations on 1 May 2013 collectively agreed to accept an arrangement that will allow Israelis and Palestinians to carry on with their land swap agreement to resolve differences instead of sticking to the pre-1967-war position.The decision of Arab nations followed a meeting in Washington of Arab officials and the US Secretary of State John Kerry. The Arab league delegation affirmed after the talks that the agreement should be based on the two-state solution on the basis of the 4 June 1967 line, with the possibility of comparable and mutual agreed minor swap of the land. The Arab Leagues proposal in its original form-proposed in 2002 at the Arab Leagues Summit in Beirut- included a full Arab recognition of an Israeli state, provided it gave up land captured in the 1967 Israel-Arab war and it should accept a just solution for Palestinian refugees. The Israel had earlier rejected the plan. Israel refuses to return to 1967 borders, inclusion of East Jerusalem in a future Palestinian state and the return of Palestinian refugees displaced in earlier Israel-Arab wars.

Brazil's Roberto Azevedo appointed Head of World Trade Organization

Roberto Azevedo from Brazil on 8 May 2013 was named as the head of the World Trade Organisation. His appointment to the office came up at the time when the organization is struggling to identify ways to revive the talks on freeing global commerce and to help poorer nations in development. He will take charge of his office from Pascal Lamy of France in the Geneva-based Body in September 2013. Azevedo is the first Latin American to be appointed as the head of the WTO since it was created in 1995. The process of electing the WTO Head took a period of about six months. A total of nine people were competing for the post. After being into the office, his journey will start with the 9th ministerial in Bali, Indonesia from 3 to 6 December 2013. About Roberto Azevedo Since 2008, the 55 years old, Roberto Azevedo has been serving WTO as the Permanent Representative of Brazil to WTO and other International Economic Organisation in Geneva He was the Deputy Chief of Staff for Economic Affairs to the Foreign Minister from 1995 to 96 He was the head of Dispute Settlement Unit from 2001 to 2005 Director of the Department of Economic Affairs from 2005 to 2006 Vice Minister for Economic and Technological Affairs from 2006 to 2008 About WTO WTO was established with the signing of the Marrakesh Agreement/ Marrakesh Declaration at Marrakesh, Morrocco in 1994. WTO came up as a replacement of the General Agreement on Tariffs and Trade (GATT). GATT was overseeing the rules of commerce since 1948. GATT covered trade in goods, whereas WTO deals with trade of inventions, designs and services too.


Tribal Forest Dwellers Empowerment Scheme Launched

Tribal Forest Dwellers Empowerment Scheme of National Scheduled Tribes Finance and Development Corporation (NSTFDC) for economic upliftment of Schedule Tribe forest dwellershere was launched on 8 May 2013 by the Union Ministry of Tribal Affairs & Panchayati Raj. This is a significant scheme for economic development of Scheduled tribes. The Forest Rights act recognized and regularized the preexisting rights of ST forest dwellers and under this scheme, financial assistance will be provided them at concessional rate for their empowerment. The Government enacted a Scheduled Tribes and Other Traditional Forest Dwellers (Recognition of Forest Rights) Act, 2006. Under this act, the Scheduled Tribes and Other Traditional forest Dwellers have been given the right to hold the forest land for habitation or for self-cultivation or for carrying out any other traditional activity for their livelihood. Most of the Scheduled Tribes are poor and need financial support for productive utilization of land for their livelihood. In order to provide concessional finance to the Forest Dwelling STs, the NSTFDC has formulated the new Tribal Forest Dwellers Empowerment Scheme. NSTFDC would generate awareness, provide training and assist in market linkage apart from providing financial assistance at concessional rate of interest of 6% p.a. to the beneficiaries. This assistance would be made available through 33 State Channelizing Agencies of NSTFDC and certain PSU Banks/ Regional Rural Banks having refinance agreements with NSTFDC.

Alex Ferguson announced retirement as Manchester United Manager

Alex Ferguson on 8 May 2013 declared that he would step down as the Manager of Manchester United at the end of the season. His declaration has put to an end, his 26 years journey as the incharge of Manchester United. After retirement, he will join the board of the football club. The 71 year old, Alex Ferguson would step down from the position of manager after the Uniteds game against West Bromwich Albion to be played on 19 May 2013. Alex will now take over the position of both Director and Ambassador for the club. About Alex Ferguson Alex Ferguson is the most successful manager in the English Football History He took over the charge of the team as its manager in 1986 from Ron Atkinson and since then has helped the team in winning five FA Cups and two Champions League In 26 years of his journey he managed to win 13 league titles He was the in charge of 1498 matches for the club After taking the charge of Manchester United, he helped the team to win the English title of 1992-93 by defeating Liverpool Players like David Beckham, Ryan Giggs and Paul Scholes, Eric Cantona, Cristiano Ronaldo and Wayne Rooney started their career under Alex Ferguson Championships Won under Alex Ferguson by Manchester United
Championships Premier League Champions League League Cup FIFA World Cup Years of W inning 1993, 1994, 1996, 1997, 1999, 2000, 2001, 2003, 2007, 2008, 2009, 2011 and 2013 1999 and 2008 1992, 2006, 2009 and 2010 2008 FA (Football Association) Cup 1990, 1994, 1996, 1999 and 2004

Land Pooling Policy in Master Plan Delhi 2021 Approved

The modification regarding Land Pooling Policy in Master Plan Delhi 2021 (MPD-2021) was approved by the Ministry of Urban development on 18 April 2013. The Policy envisages 40 percent land will be kept with DDA for land parcels above 20 Hectare and 60 percent for land parcels below 20 Hectare. The Development Fee as decided under the Policy shall be payable by the Land owner. MPD 2021, provides a comprehensive policy to meet the growing demands of Housing and urbanization. DDA is currently engaged in extensive modification of the Master Plan of Delhi - 2001 and is preparing MPD with a perspective up to 2021 to cater to the increasing population and the changing requirements of the city. As a prelude to preparation of MPD - 2021, twelve subgroups have been constituted comprising: Experts and Professionals,


Eminent Persons, Public Representatives, Concerned Departments, Sectoral Studies Series of Seminars inviting politicians, administrators,local bodies & RWA's etc. About 200 Experts are Delibrating on different aspects. The Sub-Groups on : Demographic Profile Regional and Sub-Regional Shelter Trade and Commerce Industry Physical infrastructure Traffic and Transportation Social Infrastructure Mixed Land Use Conservation and Urban Renewal Environment and Pollution Development Controls Stages: Public participation through series of seminars and interaction with Residents Welfare Associations etc. Recommendations of the sub-groups Central / state government and authority advice(Guidelines received from GOI - additional input being publicised for consultation with stakeholders) Draft plan Approval of GOI for issue of public notice to invite objections & suggestions. Consideration of objections and suggestions Final plan The Delhi Development Authority was created in 1957 under the provisions of the Delhi Development Act "to promote and secure the development of Delhi "

Supreme Court dismissed Plea Challenging Cairn-Vedanta Deal

The Supreme Court on 8 May 2013 dismissed a PIL challenging 8.5 billion US Dollars CairnVedanta deal and its validity. A bench of justices comprising of K.S. Radhakrishnan and Dipak Misra asserted that the decision by the Centre and ONGC pertaining to the deal was taken after due consideration and the court is not liable to sit in judgment on the decision taken by parties in business dealing. The PIL was filed by a resident of Bangalore Arun Kumar Agarwal who had alleged that there was a clause in the agreement between Cairn group and ONGC that in case Cairn Group wanted to sell its shares in Cairn India, it would first offer the same to ONGC and this right was not asserted by the PSU and the Centre. It was also alleged that the decision on the deal had been made on extraneous considerations and without taking into account the relevant aspects. As per the clause, Cairn could sell its shares to other parties only after ONGC refused to buy the stake and ONGC, thus, had the right of first refusal (ROFR). As per the petitioner Cairn Energy had violated the clause and signed a deal with Vedanta group to sell its shares in Cairns India, without making an offer to ONGC and that the exchequer would have benefited by over one lakh crore Rupees if ONGC had insisted on enforcing the clause. About Cairn India Ltd Cairn India Ltd, a subsidiary of UK-based Cairns Energy, is the operator of the Rajasthan oil block. It had entered into an agreement with UK-based Vedanta Group on 16 June, 2010, to sell its majority stake in Cairn India for a consideration of around 8.5 billion US Dollars without offering the shares to its partner ONGC in the joint venture as per the agreement of right of first refusal.

Amendments in the National Food Security Bill Introduced in the Lok Sabha
Ministry for Consumer Affairs, Food & Public Distribution introduced amendments in the National Food Security Bill in the Lok Sabha on 9 May 2013 and placed the amended Bill for consideration and passing by the House. Based on the recommendations of the Standing Committee on


Food, Consumer Affairs and Public Distribution, the Government decided to move certain amendments to the Bill. These amendments seek to make the framework of the proposed legislation simpler, provide more flexibility to States/UTs in its implementation and to address some of the concerns raised by them. Main amendments to the Bill are as under: Coverage and entitlement under Targeted Public Distribution System (TPDS): Instead of coverage of upto 75 percent of the rural population and upto 50 percent of the urban population under two categories of priority and general households with different entitlements and issue prices provided in the original Bill, there would be only one category of beneficiaries with uniform entitlement of 5 kg per person per month. Protection of entitlements under Targeted Public Distribution System:The entitlement of Antyodaya Anna Yojana (AAY) households, which constitute poorest of the poor will, however, be protected at 35 kg per household per month. It is also proposed to accept the recommendation of the Committee to protect the existing allocation of foodgrains to the States/UTs, subject to it being restricted to average annual offtake during last three years (2009-10 to 2011-12). State-wise coverage and identification of beneficiaries: Corresponding to coverage of 75 percent/50 percent of the rural/urban population at the all India level, State-wise coverage will be determined by the Planning Commission. The work of identification of eligible households is proposed to be left to the States/UTs, which may frame their own criteria or use the Social Economic and Caste Census (SECC) data. Subsidized Prices under TDPS and their revision: Uniform prices of 3/2/1 rupees per kg for rice/wheat/coarse grains will be applicable to all eligible beneficiaries. It is proposed to fix these prices for the first three years of implementation of the Act, and thereafter link the same suitably to MSP. Cost of intra-State transportation & handling of foodgrains and FPS Dealers margin: In order to address the concerns of States/UTs regarding additional financial burden, it is proposed that Central Government may provide assistance to States towards cost of intra-State transportation, handling of foodgrains and FPS Dealers margin, for which norms will be devised. Maternity benefit: It is proposed to allow States/UTs to use the existing machinery of District Grievance Redressal Officer (DGRO), State Food Commission, if they so desire, to save expenditure on establishment of new set up. The National Food Security Bill was introduced in the Lok Sabha on 22 December 2011 to addresses the issue of food security in a comprehensive manner, by adopting a life cycle approach. The Bill was introduced after a wide-ranging consultation with various stakeholders. After introduction, the Bill was referred to Standing Committee on Food, Consumer Affairs and Public Distribution, who interacted with other Central Ministries, various other organizations and individuals and visited States before submitting its report to the Speaker, Lok Sabha on 17 January 2013. The recommendations of the Standing Committee were examined in consultation with concerned Central Ministries and also with the Food Ministers and Food Secretaries of States/UT. At the coverage and entitlement now proposed, total estimated annual foodgrains requirement is 612.3 lakh tons and the corresponding estimated food subsidy for implementation of NFSB, at 2013-14 costs, is about 124747 crore rupees. When compared to the estimated food subsidy requirement under existing TDPS and Other Welfare Schemes, the additional food subsidy implication is about 23800 crore rupees per annum. Requirement for assistance to States for meeting the expenditure on Transportation, Handling and FPS Dealers margin, etc., would be additional.

Nokia unveiled Asha 501 with New Operating System and Free Facebook Access
Nokia on 8 May 2013 announced Asha 501, a smart phone to beat the low-cost Android phones in developing markets like India. The company had been very impressed by the way Asha phones performed so far and they want to restore the platform. The Series 5 Asha phones had been made purposely for consumers in countries like India. The Asha 501 will cost around99 Dollars plus taxes in India. The Phone will be made available in June in India. The device supports only 2G connection and Wi-Fi. The 3G version is planned to be launched later. Specifications of the Asha 501 The Asha 501 runs on a revamped Asha operating system. The device has a design similar to that of low-end Lumia phones. It will be available in six colours.


It has a 3-inch touchscreen and a 3.2MP camera. It will come with a 4GB microSD card. Asha 501 will not run on the old Symbian S40 operating system, but an entirely new one. The Asha 501 will be available in two variants - single SIM and dual SIM. The dual SIM variant will have two slots for micro SIM, of which one will be hot swappable. Inspired by the Lumia design, the Asha 501 will be available in six colours - bright red, bright green, cyan, yellow, white and black. It has 17 hours of talktime with 48 days of stand-by for the single SIM variant and 26 days for the dual-SIM model. Nokia also announced a global partnership with Facebook, with this the Asha 501 users on Airtel and MTNL will get free access to the social networking site.

UK's Cairn Energy sold 8 Percent Stake in Cairn India for 910 US Dollars
UKs Cairn Energy plc on 7 May 2013 sold 8 per cent stake in Cairn India for 910 million US dollars. Cairn Energy retains about 10 per cent shareholding in Cairn India following the sale. The fund will be used to fulfill Cairns current capital needs, which include the development of discovered resources in the North Sea. Cairn Energy in June 2012 had sold 3.5 per cent stake in Cairn India for about 360 million US dollars. Cairn Energy is based in Edinburgh.

Bryan Forbes, Veteran Film Director Passed Away At 86

Bryan Forbes, the English film director, actor, screenwriter and novelist, died on 8 May 2013 in Virginia Water, Surrey following the long illness. He was 86 years of age. About Bryan Forbes He was born in east London on 22 July 1926. Bryan Forbes was popularly described as the Renaissance Man. He was one of the most prominent members of the British film industry. He is known for his horror film, Stepford Wives (in 1970s). Additionally, he wrote as well as directed a range of critically acclaimed films such as King Rat (1965), Sance on a Wet Afternoon (1964) and Whistle Down the Wind (1961). He scripted various films such as Only Two Can Play (1962), The Angry Silence (1960) and The League of Gentlemen (1959). His latest novel was The Soldier's Story, which was published in 2012. Bryan Forbes Awards and Honours In the year 2006, he was conferred with the Dilys Powell Award at London Film Critics' Circle Awards for his outstanding contribution to Cinema. The Angry Silence, his 1960 screenplay won the BAFTA award. It was also nominated for the Oscar. In 1962, Only Two Can Play won Best British Comedy Screenplay of the Writers Guild of Great Britain. 1965 Edgar Award from the Mystery Writers of America for Best Foreign Film was given to Sance on a Wet Afternoon. Sance on a Wet Afternoon also won 1964 Best British Dramatic Screenplay of the Writers Guild of Great Britain. The directorial debut of Bryan Forbes, Whistle Down the Wind reached to various nominations of BAFTA awards. In the year 2004, he was made the Commander of the Order of the British Empire for his services to the arts. In 2007, he was given the BAFTA tribute for the celebration of his extraordinary achievement in filmmaking.

10-MAY-2013 Union Cabinet of India declared Year 2013 as Water Conservation Year 2013
2013: Water Conservation Year The Union Cabinet of India on 9 May 2013 gave its approval to declare the year 2013 as Water Conservation Year 2013. Following the theme of the year, the Government has proposed to come up with several mass awareness activities with an emphasis on sensitizing the masses on water issues and to encourage them to use water judiciously and conserve it. The Policies and programs of the Ministry of Water Resource for the year will be to create a sustainable society and economy. The national awareness programs launched by the Government will aim towards achieving the identified objectives of the National Water Policy 2012 and National Water Mission. National Water Policy 2012 National Water Policy 2012 was adopted by the National Water Resources Council headed by the


Prime Minister Manmohan Singh on 28 December 2012. The Policy takes cognizance of the existing situation and proposes a framework for creation of a system of laws and institutions and a plan of action with a unified national perspective. National Water Mission The key objective of National Water Mission is water conservation. It is among the eight national missions under the National Action Plan for Climate Change. The mission aims towards conservation of water by minimizing wastage and to develop formulae for impartial distribution of the water resources both in and across the states via integrated water resources development and management.

Painting by Fernand Leger from 1921 Sold by Madonna for 7.2 Million US Dollar
The painting by Fernand Leger, which was owned by Madonna sell for 7.2 million US dollar in New York on 7 May 2013 at the Sotheby's auction house. The painting called Three Women at the Red Table dates from 1921. The proceeds from this sale will fund Madonna's Ray of Light Foundation that supports the projects of girls education in South Asia and Middle East. The sale was a part of Sotheby's sale of Impressionist as well as modern art which took over 230 million US dollar. In the meanwhile, the painting Les Pommes, a still life by French artist Paul Cezanne claimed the highest price, i.e., 41.6 million US dollar. L'Amazone, a portrait of French socialite Baroness Marguerite de Hasse de Villers by Amedeo Modigliani, was sold for 25.9 million US dollar. A Pablo Picasso sculpture of his young muse Sylvette went on sale for 13.6 million US dollar. In the same auction in 2012, the version of Edvard Munch's The Scream was sold for a world record price of 119.9 million US dollar.

Minister for Women & Child Development Launched the World Bank Assisted ISSNIP
The Minister for Women & Child Development, Krishna Tirath on 9 May 2013 launched the World Bank assisted ICDS Systems Strengthening and Nutrition Improvement Project (ISSNIP). The aim of the programme is improvement of child development and nutritional outcomes for children in selected districts having higher proportional of child under nutrition. The project is worth 2893 crore Rupees with 70 percent IDA share of2025 crore Rupees over the time duration of 7 years. The cost of phase 1 of the project is estimated to be around 682 crore Rupees. The project received an initial support of 106 million US dollar by World Bank, which is payable over the time of 25 years. This will be followed by the support for second phase of 344 million US dollar, which will be subject to assessment of phase 1. First phase of this project will support the efforts of Union Government to strengthen policy measures and institutional capacity and will also finance innovative pilots and programmers in 162 high malnutrition-burden districts across eight States. Apart from this, the project will also support the urban and sub-urban pilots in NCR of Delhi and convergent nutrition action pilots in Odisha and Uttarakhand. The Minister for Women & Child Development took various other measures for strengthening the programme management, planning and monitoring of ICDS with introduction of revised MIS, and the 5-tier monitoring and supervision committee with representation of Peoples representatives to review the progress in ICDS at different levels. The ISSNIP project will support the governments efforts in building the necessary institutional capacity and systems needed to improve nutrition in the targeted groups of mothers and children. The Cabinet Committee on Economic Affairs approved the implementation of the International Development Association (IDA) assisted ICDS Systems Strengthening and Nutrition Improvement Project (ISSNIP) in October 2012. Features of ICDS Systems Strengthening and Nutrition Improvement Project (ISSNIP): ISSNIP is designed to supplement and provide value addition on the existing ICDS programme, through systems strengthening for better service delivery, as well as to allow the selected States and Districts to experiment, innovate and conduct pilots of potentially more effective approaches for ICDS in order to achieve early childhood education and nutrition outcomes. The additional support through the project is catalytic and is an important dimension of MWCDs overall efforts to strengthen and restructure the ICDS programme. Four major components under the project are: (i) Institutional and systems strengthening in ICDS (ii) Community mobilization and behaviour change communication (iii) piloting multi-sectoral nutrition actions, and (iv) Project Management, Technical Assistance and Monitoring & Evaluation.


Stiliyan Petrov, the Captain of Aston Villa Retired from Football

Stiliyan Petrov, the captain of Aston Villa retired from football in May 2013 at the age of 33 years. Stiliyan Petrov retired because of his fight with leukaemia. He was diagnosed with the disease in March 2012. Aston Villa Football Club is the English professional association football club that is based in Birmingham. Stiliyan Petrov became a part of Aston Villa in 2006 from Celtic for 6.5 million Pound. He played for Aston Villa in the Premier League and the Bulgaria national team. He also won Bulgarian Footballer of the Year award in 2003 while playing for Celtic. In 2005, Stiliyan Petrov also wrote the autobiography titled You Can Call Me Stan. The book was a description of the correct spelling of his name. Honours and Awards won by Stiliyan Petrov Bulgarian Championship: 1997 Bulgarian Cup: 1997, 1999 Scottish Premier League: 2001, 2002, 2004, 2006 Scottish Cup: 2004, 2005 Scottish League Cup: 2000, 2006 UEFA Cup: Runner-up 2003 Football League Cup: Runner-up 2010 SPFA Young Player of the Year: 2001 Celtic Player of The Year: 2005 Aston Villa Players' Player of the Year: 2009, 2012 Aston Villa Supporters' Player of the Year: 2009 SPL Player of the Month: 3 times Bulgaria's Player of the year: 2003

CCEA approved Proposal to set-up 2 Major Ports in Bengal and Andhra Pradesh
The Cabinet Committee on Economic Affairs (CCEA) on 9 May 2013 approved the proposal of the Ministry of Shipping for setting up of two major ports in the country. The two ports will be set up through a Public Private Partnership Mode in West Bengal and Andhra Pradesh each. As per the proposal approved the port will be developed at Sagar Island in West Bengal after obtaining environmental clearances and following exact procedures for development of the project. The cabinet also agreed for appointment of the transaction advisers and legal consultants and finalization of the project structure in consultation with the State Government of West Bengal and the Planning Commission. In case of Andhra Pradesh, the Cabinet identified Dugarajapatnam location for development of the port and looked forward to find out the techno-economic feasibility report for commissioning of the port. Benefits of setting-up the two Ports Sagar Port in West Bengal: At present Kolkata has facilities of two ports namely Kolkata Docks at Kolkata and Haldia Dock Complex at Haldia. Both these ports being reverine face limitations of draught due to the morphological changes (change in river platform) in Hooghly because of siltation. Development of Sagar Port will provide a deep draught port for handling the large size vessels by doing away the heavy maintenance dredging activity. Port of Andhra Pradesh: It will facilitate the economic development of Andhra Pradesh as the rapid industrialization across Visakhapatnam Port has created a necessity of a new port in the state.

Ustad Zia Fariduddin Dagar, Dhrupad Vocalist Passed Away at 80

Ustad Zia Fariduddin Dagar (1932-2013), the dhrupad vocalist passed away on 8 May 2013 following brief illness at his Gurukul near Panvel. He was 80 years of age. Drupad is the oldest existing north Indian classical music form. About Ustad Zia Fariduddin Dagar Ustad Zia Fariduddin Dagar was born in Udaipur, Rajasthan on 15 June 1932. He was also the court musician of Maharana Bhupal Singh of Udaipur. He played a prominent role in reviving the dhrupad tradition in the 20th century along with his brother late Ustad Zia Mohiuddin Dagar, the legendary rudra veena player. He was the master of srutis. He was renowned for his drupad vocal in not just India, but also across the world. He gave performances in various popular festivals in India and abroad. He won various prestigious honours and awards such as Tagore Ratna Award, Tansen Samman


and Sangeet Natak Academy Fellowship. He was also conferred upon with the Padma Shri- India's fourth highest civilian honor in 2012, but he turned it down. He also remained a distinguished guest faculty at the Dhrupad Sansar of IIT Bombay for 5 years.

Union Government of India Approved Policy Development of Aviation Hubs in India

The Union Government of India on 9 May 2013 approved the policy development of aviation hubs in India. Information and Broadcasting Minister Manish Tewari announced that the Inter-Ministerial Committee will be developed that will work out on different models for this policy. The formation of the hubs would require establishment of various facilities such as foreign exchange, immigration, provisions for visa-on-arrival as well as customs. For this various ministries will be involved and therefore the Inter-Ministerial Committee will be developed. This committee would facilitate establishment of various aviation hubs in different major cities. The approval of the policy is termed as the major initiative for infrastructural development. The aviation hub is basically an airport that is used as intermediate point for transferring air travellers from original destination to final destination of their journey. This is also technically called hub-and-spoke operation. The policy will focus on not just development of the global hubs in India, but also establishment of domestic regional hubs which will cater to growing air traffic from the non-metro destinations in areas such as Northeast. The Union Cabinet, along with the approval of policy development of aviation hubs, also approved constitution of autonomous body called the National Skill Development Agency (NSDA) by including the National Skill Development Coordination Board (NSDCB), Office of the Adviser to the PM on Skill Development as well as Prime Minister's National Council on Skill Development (PMNCSD). The National Skill Development Agency (NSDA) will come under the Ministry of Finance. The role of NSDA is coordination as well as harmonization of Governments skill development efforts as well as private sector for achieving skilling targets of 12th five-year plan. NSDA will also play the role of anchoring and operationalising National Skills Qualifications Framework (NSQF) as well as the nodal agency for Sector Skills Councils.

Cabinet Committee on UIDAI Approved Cost Estimates for Phase IV of UID Scheme
The Cabinet Committee on Unique Identification Authority of India (UIDAI) on 9 May 2013 approved the cost estimates of Phase IV of the UID Scheme. The estimated cost of the scheme is around 3436 crore Rupees. The cost includes different components of the projects such as the cost of enrolment for 40 crore other residents through different registrars, additional rent for the regional offices of UIDAI, data centres, non-data centres, cost of updation services, additional cost of the construction of buildings for the headquarters and cost of printing as well as delivering the Aadhaar cards. The expenditure of this scheme includes: 1600 crore Rupees for cost of enrolment of other 40 crore residents 490 crore Rupees for the cost of updation services 1049 crore Rupees for cost of printing as well as delivering the Aadhaar letters 247.16 Crore Rupees towards the construction of buildings of headquarters, data centres as well as non-data centres The Phase IV of the UID Scheme will begin with an immediate effect. The UID project was launched on 29 September 2010. Since then, over 31 crore residents have been issued with the UID numbers. By March 2014, additional 40 crore residents will be allocated the UID. Under the UID project, all residents of the country are provided with the unique numbers. It is aimed at making sure that each and every Indian resident has a unique form of identity. UID numbers are also provided to the marginalized people, thereby providing equity. Apart from this, UID also ensures effective governance and better service delivery.

Unknown Number of Elephant Killing Took Place at World Heritage Site in Central African
The armed gang of poachers, in the month of May 2013, killed an unidentified number of elephants at Dzanga-Ndoki national park, the world heritage site in Central African Republic.


The World Wildlife Fund (WWF) explained that these ivory poachers were observed with the help of observation platform of the scientists used to shoot animals. The Dzanga-Ndoki Park is situated in south-western corner of the Central African Republic (CAR) that borders Cameroon and the Republic of Congo. This Park is described as the ne-of-its-kind habitat for primarily the forest elephants. Dzanga-Ndoki Park is also called the village of elephants and around 200 elephants gather everyday in this Park for drinking mineral salts which are found in the sands. On 6 May 2013, WWF issued warning about the group of 17 armed poachers who had heavycalibre rifles. The armed men made use of the Dzanga-bai observation platform for shooting these elephants. This platform is mostly used only by the tourists and the scientists. Dr Anna Feistner of WWF explained that Sudanese ivory poachers were taking benefit out of lawless state of this country. Elephant raid in the world heritage site also alarmed the international conservation authorities such as Convention on International Trade in Endangered Species (Cites). Serious illegal killing of the elephants has been observed in African countries over the past. In African countries, the amount of seized ivory is at highest level in past 16 years.

Amendments in the Parliament (Prevention of Disqualification) Act, 1959 Approved

The Union Cabinet of India on 9 May 2013 gave its approval to Amendments in the Parliament (Prevention of Disqualification) Act, 1959 by introducing a Bill in the Parliament named Parliament (Prevention of Disqualification) Amendment Bill, 2013. The Section 3 of the Parliament (Prevention of Disqualification) Act, 1959, has been amended time to time. It lists certain offices of profit under the Government of India or the Government of any State, which do not disqualify the holders thereof for being chosen as, or for being, a Member of Parliament. The Chairperson of the National Commission for Scheduled Castes and Scheduled Tribes is exempted from such disqualification under Sub-clause (ii) of clause (ba) of section 3 of the Parliament (Prevention of Disqualification) Act, 1959. By the 89th Amendment Act of 2003 of the Constitution of India, the National Commission for Scheduled Castes and Tribes was bifurcated into two independent Commissions namely the National Commission for the Scheduled Castes and the National Commission for the Scheduled Tribes. With the 89th amendment Act Article 338 of the Constitution was amended and a new article, namely, Article 338A was inserted in the Constitution.

US slapped Sanctions against 4 Iranian Nuclear Supply Companies

The United States on 10 May 2013 slapped sanctions against four Iranian Nuclear Supply Companies and an individual for their attempt to procure goods for Iranian Nuclear Programme. The four Iranian companies are Aluminat, Pars Amayesh Sanaat Kish, Pishro Systems Research Company and Taghtiran Kashan Company and the Iranian Citizen is Parviz Khaki. Parviz is alleged for procurement and attempt to procure goods for Irans nuclear programme, which can be used for construction, operation and maintenance of gas centrifuges to enrich Uranium. The foreign financial institutions facilitating significant transactions to or from the sanction entities and individual are exposed to potential loss of access to US Financial Sector, following the rules of the US State Department.

Air India declared Transformation by Implementation of Cost Cutting Measures

Air India on 10 May 2013 declared a set of transformations by implementing certain cost cutting measures. The airlines will soon start charging passengers travelling in economy class on domestic sectors for food. The recommendations on transformation suggested by the committee constituted to suggest cost-cutting measures for the bleeding national carrier were accepted by the Union Ministry of Civil Aviation. The constituted committee has suggested a set of 46 recommendations, which when implemented will save an estimated annual expenditure of 3240 crore rupees. One of the major recommendations suggested by the committee is serving tea, cold drinks, coffee, peanuts and biscuits, free of cost by doing away the meal. The complete meal on an Air India flight costs 175 rupees which will come down to 25 rupees, with the implementation of recommendation and help in saving about 100 crore rupees annually to Air India. The Union Ministry of Civil Aviation has recommended to Air India to implement the recommendations and provide a schedule on implementation to it within a weeks time. The Ministry of


Civil Aviation on 29 April 2013 allowed airlines to unbundle charges for services like preferential seating, meals, snacks, drinks (doesnt include water) and use of lounges and baggage. The free baggage allowance was reduced to 15 kg from previous 20 kg by Air India and Jet Airways, following the announcement from the Ministry of Civil Aviation. For baggage above 15 kg, 250 rupees per kg extra will be charged by the passengers. The decision from the Aviation Ministry came up in wake up of the nod given to Air Asia to launch a local airline by the Union Ministry of Finance. The constituted committee that suggested the recommendations on the cost cutting measures and Optimal Utilisation of Resources in Air India was a five-member Committee, headed by Ravindra H. Dholakia, Professor of Economics and Public Systems, IIM, Ahmedabad to suggest various measures for cost cutting and optimal utilisation of resources in Air India.

11-MAY-2013 PK Bansal and Ashwani Kumar submitted their Resignations to Prime Minister
Union Railway Minister Pawan Kumar Bansal and Union Law Minister of India Ashwani Kumar submitted their resignation to the Prime Minister of India, Manmohan Singh on 10 May 2013. Railway Minister PK Bansal resigned from his office after a weeks time since his nephew Vijay Singla was arrested for his alleged involvement of bribery of 90 lakh rupees from the Railway Board Member, with a promise of promotion. Ashwani Kumar the Union Law Minister submitted his resignation after being into attack by the opposition and the CBI affidavit submitted to Supreme Court for vetting up the CBI report in the Coal Block allocation scam.

Inter-Ministerial Group approved 10% Equity Sale in Coal India Limited

An Inter-Ministerial Group (IMG) on 10 May 2013 approved 10 percent equity sale of Coal India Limited. This equity sale is likely to fetch, about 17000 crore rupees to the Union Government. Union Governments holds over 90 percent stake in Coal India at present. The Inter-Ministerial Group was headed by Ravi Mathur, the Disinvestment Secretary and it is guiding the process of disinvestment of Governments Equity in CIL. The CIL with a cash balance of 60000 crore rupees is the biggest disinvestment for the Government in the current fiscal year 2013-14 and Union Government is in the plan to generate 40000 crore rupees with sales of PSUs stakes in the current fiscal.

Eighth India-Seychelles Joint Commission Meet concluded at New Delhi

The eighth India-Seychelles Joint Commission Meeting (JCM) was held on 8 May 2013 at New Delhi. The Joint Commission exchanged views on bilateral, regional and international matters of mutual interest during the meet. Review of the ongoing cooperation between the two nations in different fields was also done and views were exchanged for expanding and strengthening the perimeter of the cooperation between the two sides. The Indian Delegation to the meeting was led by Sudhir Vyas, Secretary (West), Ministry of External Affairs and the Seychelles delegation was headed by H.E. Ambassador Maurice Jean Leonard Loustau-Lalane, the Principal Secretary in the Ministry of Foreign Affairs of Seychelles. The next meeting of the Joint Commission will be held in Seychelles at mutually convenient date.

India and China signed Protocol to Enhance Cooperation between Foreign Ministries
Union External Affairs Minister, Salman Khurshid paid an official visit to the Peoples Republic of China from 9 to 10 May 2013 at the invitation of the Foreign Minister of China, Wang Yi. Both countries signed a new protocol to enhance cooperation between their foreign ministries, while working on a mechanism to step up coordination for providing timely information to the media. The protocol that was signed by Salman Khurshid and his Chinese counterpart Wang Yi on 9 May 2013 was essentially an upgradation of a similar protocol signed in 2006. The 2006 protocol the two countries listed various new dialogue mechanisms that has been in existence between the two sides, since then. Discussions over bilateral, regional and global issues of concern were discussed by the two sides during the visit of Salman Khurshid to China. The two countries reviewed the fallout of the recent


stand-off in the Depsang Valley in Daulat Beig Oldi sector of Ladakh. The two sides also tried to make existing mechanisms more effective to respond with greater urgency in dealing with border violations and recent episode on the border on the Line of Actual Control, LAC was also discussed. The two sides also discussed upon the Visit of the Chinese Premier to India. The two day visit of the Union Foreign Minister to China took place in May 2013 amid the de facto border tensions in the western side of the Himalayas and just before the scheduled visit of Chinese Premier Li Keqiang to India. Few days, back India asked the China to withdraw its troops from the border area of the Daulat Beig Oldi Sector of Ladakh after their 19 kilometers of incursion and camping over there. The rivalry between the two nations was termed as the Dragon-Elephant rivalry, but apart from the rivalry between the two, both the nations have been advocating for the rights and interests of the developing nations since decades. Earlier the new Chinese Premier after his appointment to the office also declared that he respects the Chinese ties with India and will work forward to strengthen the same.

India Bagged 2 Silver and 7 Bronze Medals in Commonwealth Championship

India on 10 May 2013 finished their candidature in the tournament with a record haul of 2 Silver and 7 Bronze in the 19th Commonwealth Table Tennis Championships that concluded in New Delhi. One silver medal on behalf of India was won by Soumyajit Ghosh and Mouma Das in the mixed doubles event, and the other one was won by the men's team earlier in the tournament. Indians represented the country in atleast six of the eight tournaments that included doubles too, but didnt turned up to be successful in securing a gold medal for the country. At the same time, Singapore delivered the best and claimed gold in every category except the women's individual competition. Mo Zhang from Canada pulled off the gold from Singapores world no 27 Mengyu Mu by securing a 4-3 win in the finals.

Guatemala Court Tribunal Sentenced Former Military Leader Montt 80 Years in Prison
A Guatemala Courts three-judge tribunal has found Efrain Rios Montt, a former military ruler guilty of genocide and other crimes against Humanity and sentenced him to 80 years in prison. The 86 year old Montt, was convicted by the court for ordering the deaths of 1771 people of the Ixil Maya ethnic group during 1982 and 1983, his term in the office. It is the first time, when a former head of state had been found guilty of genocide by a court in his/her country. The rest of the convicts of the incident were handed over to the international courts. Mauricio Rodriguez Sanchez, the former chief of military intelligence who was facing the trials into the case of genocide and crimes against humanity along with Rios Montt was acquitted from the case. The sentence of 50 years for genocide and 30 years for crimes against humanity against Riosd Montt was read out by Judge Jazmin Barrios in Guatemala City. The decision from the three-judge tribunal of Guatemala Court is a historic decision and can be considered as a great breakthrough for human rights in the Guatemala region. During the 1960-1996 civil war of Guatemala, an estimated 2 lakh people were killed; the majority of the people who died were Mayans. About Ixils The Ixils in Guatemala were considered to be the public enemies of the state. They were victims of racism and were considered to be the inferior race.

12-MAY-2013 Iran gave Reuters Permission to reopen its Tehran Bureau

Iran on 11 May 2013 gave Reuters news agency permission to reopen its Tehran bureau. The work there was suspended in March 2012 over one of its video reports. In September 2012, a court found Reuters guilty of propaganda against the regime, and publishing false information in an effort to disturb public opinion. Domestic Iranian and foreign media outlets in the Islamic republic need permission from the culture and Islamic guidance ministry to operate. The authorities in Iran routinely monitor and restrict the activities of the few journalists working for foreign media in Iran.


Dadasaheb Phalke Award for Lifetime Achievement to Veteran Actor Pran

The Ministry for Information & Broadcasting, on 10 May 2013 presented the prestigious Dadasaheb Phalke award for life time achievement to Pran Kishan Sikand, popularly known as Pran at his residence in Mumbai. The veteran actor was unable to travel to New Delhi for the National Film Awards function held on 3 May 2013. The veteran actor was presented the coveted award, comprising of a Swarn Kamal, Citation, Shawl and a cash prize of 10 lakhs rupees. Pran is the 44th recipient of the Dadasaheb Phalke Award, that was instituted in 1969, the birth centenary year Dadasaheb Phalke, considered the Father of Indian Cinema. The veteran actor has given sterling performances in many films along with Dilip Kumar, Dev Anand and Raj Kapoor in 1950s 60s and 70s. Prans performances have received acclaim in films like Azaad, Madhumati, Devdas, Dil Diya Dard Liya, Ram Aur Shyam and Aadmi, Ziddi, Munimji, Amar Deep, Jab Pyar Kisi Se Hota Hai, Aah, Chori Chori, Jagte Raho, Chhalia, Jis Desh Men Ganga Behti Hai, Zanjeer etc. Major Facts related to Pran Born in the year 1920 in Old Delhi, Pran started his career way back in 1940. He first ventured into photography but a chance meeting with a film producer got him his first role in a film called Yamla Jat. He has acted in over 400 films in a career spanning six decades. In 2001, the Government of India had honoured Pran with the Padma Bhushan award.

The Year 2013 declared as Water Conservation Year-2013

The decision to declare the year 2013 as Water Conservation Year 2013 was approved by the Union Cabinet of India on 9 May 2013. A number of mass awareness activities will be undertaken during Water Conservation Year 2013 with emphasis on sensitizing the masses on water related issues, encourage them to conserve and use it judiciously. The policies and programmes of the Ministry of Water Resources will be propagated to create a sustainable society and economy. An effective and sustained mass awareness programme will be launched with the involvement of all stakeholders to achieve the objectives identified in the National Water Policy, 2012 and National Water Mission. Water as a Natural Resource Water is a natural resource, fundamental to life, livelihood, food security and sustainable development. It is also a scarce resource. India has more than 18 percent of the world`s population, but has only 4 percent of world`s renewable water resources with 2.4 percent of world`s land area. There are further limits on utilizable quantities of water owing to uneven distribution over time, as 75 percent of annual rainfall is received in just four months. Also region wise it varies from 10 cm rainfall in Rajasthan to 1000 cm in North Eastern Region. In addition, there are challenges of frequent floods and droughts in one or the other part of the country. With a growing population and rising needs of a fast developing nation as well as the given indicators of the impact of climate change, per capita availability of water is likely to go down from 1545 cubic metre per year in 2011 to 1341 cubic metre per year in 2025. The increasing demand of water for various purposes will further strain with the possibility of deepening water conflicts among different user groups as drinking water need is going to rise by 44 percent, irrigation need by 10 percent, industry need by 81 percent respectively by 2025. National Water Policy In view of this, the Ministry had prepared National Water Policy (2012), which was adopted by the National Water Resources Council headed by the Prime Minister on 28 December 2012. This takes cognizance of the existing situation; proposes a framework for creation of a system of laws and institutions and a plan of action with a unified national perspective. Hence, there is a need for greater awareness on water conservation for optimal usage of the existing resources. What is Water Conservation Water Conservation is also the key objective of the National Water Mission which is one of the eight National Missions under the National Action Plan for Climate Change. This envisages conservation, minimizing wastage and ensuring more equitable distribution of water resources both across and within States through integrated water resources development and management. How Water Resource Management Should be Done The effective water resources management must be underpinned by knowledge and understanding of the availability of the resource itself, the uses to which water is put and the challenges facing the users of water at all levels of stake holders. This can be done by creating mass awareness about the fact that water conservation is the immediate need of the hour.


Union Cabinet approved National Skill Development Agency (NSDA)

NSDA: National Skill Development Agency approved by Union Cabinet The Union Cabinet of India on 9 May 2013 gave its approval for constituting an autonomous body called the National Skill Development Agency (NSDA) by subsuming the Prime Ministers National Council on Skill Development (PMNCSD), the National Skill Development Coordination Board (NSDCB) and the Office of the Adviser to the PM on Skill Development. The NSDA will be located in the Ministry of Finance. The NSDA will coordinate and harmonise the skill development efforts of the Government and the private sector to achieve the skilling targets of the 12th Plan and beyond; anchor and operationalise the National Skills Qualifications Framework (NSQF) and be the nodal agency for Sector Skills Councils and endeavour to bridge the social, regional, gender and economic divides in skilling. It will also be empowered to raise extra budgetary resources. The Central Ministries and NSDC will continue to implement schemes in their remit. The NSDA is expected to provide the much needed single point focus to ensure that skilling quality and standards meet sector specific requirements benchmarked to international standards. Such an initiative will boost employability of youth in India. The proposal to set up the National Skill Development Agency (NSDA) was first considered by the Cabinet in its meeting held on 31 January 2013 and it was referred to a Group of Ministers (GoM) to review all aspects.

ISSNIP Project was launched by Ministry of Women and Child Development

Ministry for Women & Child Development launched the World Bank assisted ICDS Systems Strengthening and Nutrition Improvement Project (ISSNIP) in New Delhi on 9 May 2013. The programme aims at improving child development and nutritional outcomes for children in selected districts having higher proportional of child under nutrition. The programme aims at improving child development and nutritional outcomes for children in selected districts having higher proportional of child under nutrition. Total size of the project is 2893 crore rupees with 70 percent IDA share of 2025 crore rupees (450 million US dollars) over 7 years. The estimated cost of phase 1 of the project is about 151.50 million US dollars (682 crore rupees) of which 106 million US dollars is the IDA share (70 percent). The World Bank is supporting this project initially with a concessionary loan of 106 million US dollars payable over 25 years. This is likely to be followed by a second phase of support of 344 million US dollars subject to assessment of phase 1. The first phase of the project will support the governments efforts to strengthen policy measures and institutional capacity and will also finance innovative pilots and programmers in 162 high malnutrition-burden districts across eight States. In additional the project will support urban/sub-urban pilots in NCR of Delhi and convergent nutrition action pilots in Odisha and Uttarakhand. The first phase of the project will support the governments efforts to strengthen policy measures and institutional capacity and will also finance innovative pilots and programmers in 162 high malnutrition-burden districts across eight States. In additional the project will support urban/ sub-urban pilots in NCR of Delhi and convergent nutrition action pilots in Odisha and Uttarakhand.

National Technology Day was Observed on 11 May 2013

11 May 2013: National Technology Day National Technology Day was celebrated on 11 May 2013 as a symbol of quest for scientific inquiry, technological creativity and the translation of that quest in the integration of Science, Society and Industry. This day is also celebrated to honour technological innovations and their successful commercialization which makes fruits of research reach people at large. This years function is centered on the Theme Innovation - Making a Difference. On 11 May 1998 India achieved a major technological breakthrough by successfully carrying out nuclear tests at Pokhran. Also first, indigenous aircraft Hansa-3 was test flown at Bangalore on this day and India also performed successful test firing of the Trishul missile on the same day. Considering above technological achievements on a particular date i.e. 11 May, the day of 11 May was chosen to be commemorated as National Technology Day. To commemorate this day, TDB instituted a National Award which is conferred upon both the provider of technology and the developer of technology product. The award carries an amount of 10 Lakh rupees each to the Industrial Concern and the technology provider, and a trophy each to both. In addition to this TDB has introduced cash Award of 5 lakhs rupees and a trophy to be given to maximum three SSI units which have successfully commercialized a technology based product. The National Award for the year 2013 is being awarded to Biovet Private Limited, Malur, Kolar


for successfully developing commercial production of Bluetongue pentavalent vaccine and Johnes disease vaccine and to Indian Veterinary Research Institute (IVRI) Izatnagar, Uttar Pradesh for developing the technologies of the two vaccines.

External Affairs Minister Salman Khurshid visited China

External Affairs Minister, Salman Khurshid, paid an official visit to the Peoples Republic of China on 09-10 May 2013. The two nations discussed bilateral, regional and global issues of concern to both sides. They also discussed the proposed visit to India of Chinese Premier Li Keqiang. India and China also discussed Bangladesh-China-India-Myanmar Economic Corridor and regional trading arrangement. They also discussed their recent problem on the Line of Control during this visit.

A New Type of Wheat developed to Increase Productivity

British scientists developed a new type of wheat which could increase productivity by 30 percent. The last 15 years have registered little growth in the average wheat harvest from each acre in Britain. The Cambridge-based National Institute of Agricultural Botany combined an ancient ancestor of wheat with a modern variety to produce a new strain. The scientists used cross-pollination and seed embryo transfer technology to transfer some of the resistance of the ancient ancestor of wheat into modern British varieties. The resulting crop turned out to be bigger and stronger than the current modern wheat varieties. Scientists will carry out more tests before it is harvested by farmers. This Scientific development ensures that the global food security demands of the next five decades can be met.

Madrid Open 2013: Rafael Nadal won Mens Singles Trophy

In the Men's Singles title clash of the Madrid Open played on 12 May 2013, World Number Five Nadal defeated Swiss Stanislas Wawrinka, in straight sets, 6-2, 6-4. Spain's Rafael Nadal has clinched his fifth title in seven tournaments since returning from a seven-month knee injury layoff. In the Women's Singles, World Number One Serena Williams of the United States bagged her 50th career Singles title. She beat Russian Maria Sharapova, 6-1, 6-4.

13-MAY-2013 IFFCO signed Agreement with Vale SA for Supply of Rock Phosphate
Indian Farmers Fertiliser Co-operative (IFFCO), on 11 May 2013 signed a long-term agreement with Brazilian mining company Vale SA for supply of rock phosphate. It is used in manufacturing phosphatic soil nutrients. IFFCO signed this agreement in order to strengthen its phosphate sourcing for manufacturing of phosphatic fertilisers in India.

Retail Inflation declined to 9.39 Percent in April 2013

Retail inflation declined to 9.39 per cent in April because of reduction in prices of vegetables, edible oil and protein-based items as per the data released on 13 May 2013. Retail inflation which is based on the Consumer Price Index (CPI) stood at 10.39 per cent in March 2013. The prices in the vegetables basket reduced to 5.43 per cent in April 2013 from 12.16 per cent in March 2013. Inflation in egg, meat and fish was registered at 13.60 per cent during April 2013. In oils and fats segment, inflation stood at 7.52 per cent. The overall food and beverages registered an inflation of 10.61 per cent in April 2013 as against 12.42 per cent in March 2013. Among all the constituents that constitute the CPI, cereals saw the highest inflation of 16.65 per cent in April 2013. Moreover, inflation in pulses recorded 10.91 per cent and in sugar it was 10.49 per cent on an annual basis. In urban areas, retail inflation fell to 9.73 per cent in April 2013 from 10.38 per cent in March 2013. The CPI for rural population declined to 9.16 per cent during April 2013 from 10.33 per cent in March 2013.

Siddaramaiah sworn-in as the 22nd Chief Minister of Karnataka

Siddaramaiah, the leader of the Indian National Congress on 11 May 2013 was sworn in as the 22nd chief minister of the state of Karnataka. 64 years old Siddaramaiah was administered the oath of office and secrecy by Governor HR Bhardwaj at Sree Kanteerva stadium. It is important here to note that Siddaramaiah led the Congress in Karnataka which won 121


seats in the 225-member assembly for which election was held on 5 May 2013 and voted counted on 8 May. The Congress last ruled the state on its own in 1999-2004. For nearly two years in 20042006, it headed a coalition with Janata Dal-Secular. A Brief Insight into the Political Career of Siddaramaiah In year 1992 Siddaramaiah was appointed as Secretary General of Janata Dal. In Year 1994 became the Minister for Finance in the Janata Dal government headed by Deve Gowda. He served as a Deputy Chief Minister of Karnataka twice, first in 1996 when JH Patel became Chief Minister and again in 2004 when JDS formed a coalition government with Dharam Singh. In Chief Minister Ramakrishna Hegde's government, he handled diverse portfolios such as Sericulture, Animal Husbandry and Transport portfolios during different stages.

Scientists designed Peptide-based Delivery Platforms to cure Cancer

Scientists at CSIR-Centre for Cellular and Molecular Biology (CCMB) invented peptide-based delivery platforms for targeting tumours. This can be helpful in curing Cancer. The scientists developed this platform by using bacterial fermentation to bind DNA or small interfering RNA (siRNA) or short hairpin RNA (shRNA) and delivering them into cells to target tumours. Given that DNA, siRNA and shRNA are negatively-charged, they need carriers like recombinant proteins. The benefit of DNA or siRNA is that they help in silencing the targeted genes. For example, if the TF gene involved in new blood vessel formation is silenced, the tumour will degenerate. At CCMB, the scientists developed chimeric peptide by fusing three peptide modules to deliver DNA or shRNA for degenerating tumours. Chimeric proteins with varied functional properties can be obtained from any organism or a virus and produced in bacterial factories using standard practices of recombinant DNA method. The advantage of using chimeric proteins is that they could be changed to target different tumours. Scientists are making efforts to evolve peptide-based platform technology with other homing ligands recognising different targets.

Jharkhand decided to Impart Technical Training to Unemployed Youth

The government of Jharkhand on 12 May 2013 decided to impart technical skill development training to all unemployed youth of the naxal affected areas. This government's decision has come in the wake of recent success of one such project in Chaibasa where the unemployed youths of erstwhile naxal affected areas of Saranda were trained in a special institute- Gurukul. Saryu is one such naxal affected area of Jharkhand and presently, a special development plan called Saryu Development Plan, is being carried out there. This area of Latehar and Palamu often faces acute water crisis. The Saryu Development Plan is designed on the lines of an identical project at Saranda. Here Integrated Watershed Management Programme is a part of the development plan and its aim is to save the surface water. With the help of satellite, pictures of catchment area and command area have been obtained which show the possibilities of management of surface water, something that would hopefully bring a new phase in the lives of people of this part of Latehar and Palamu.

National Stock Exchange(NSE) launched Debt Trading Platform

National Stock Exchange, the Leading bourse on 11 May 2013 launched the countrys first dedicated debt trading platform. The new Platform launched is awaiting the market regulator SEBIs guidelines for allowing participation of mutual funds, insurance companies and pension funds. NSE had recently received approval from SEBI to launch the debt segment. Function of the Debt Trading Platform The debt trading platform is supposed to provide retail investors an opportunity to invest in corporate bonds on a liquid and transparent exchange platform. Banks and primary dealers are the first to enter and they will provide enough liquidity in the debt segment. The mutual funds, insurance companies and pension funds are also expected to participate after guidelines for the same are issued. The Debt Trading exchange platform is an innovation, which has been launched after intensive feedback from market participants. It is similar to RBIs NDS-OM, where Government securities are traded on a transparent platform


NRI Sunil Chopra elected as the Deputy Mayor of a London Borough

A leading NRI in United Kingdom, Sunil Chopra was elected as the Deputy Mayor of a London Borough. Councillor Sunil Chopra was elected as the Deputy Mayor of Southwark for 2013-14. Delhi-born Chopra, General Secretary of the Indian Overseas Congress, London, is the first and only Indian-origin elected councillor in London Borough of Southwark Council, which has only 1.5 per cent Indian-origin people. Sunil Chopra, born and brought up in Delhi before moving to the UK was the first President of College of Vocational Studies in Delhi. During his University days he was the Vice President of Youth Congress Delhi and also was president of NSUI, Delhi.

National Florence Nightingale Award 2013 were Presented

The President of India Pranab Mukherjee presented National Florence Nightingale Award 2013 to 35 nursing professionals for their services with devotion, sincerity, dedication and compassion in New Delhi on 12 May 2013. The awards were given on the occasion of international Nurses Day. The Florence Nightingale Award was instituted by the Health Ministry to appreciate the selfless services rendered by Nurses with devotion, sincerity, dedication and compassion. The Award carries 50000 rupees cash, a certificate, a citation certificate and a Medal. This award would inspire nursing professionals all over India to encourage them to join this noble profession and provide better healthcare service to the people.The National Florence Nightingale Award is given to the outstanding nursing personnel employed in Central, State/UTs. Nurses working in Government, Voluntary Organizations, Mission institutions and private institutions can apply with due recommendation of concerned State Government. Altogether 272 nurses have been decorated with this award by the Ministry of Health and Family Welfare so far. Nursing professionals honoured with National Florence Nightingale Award 2013 are as follows: Sl. No. Name State/Department 1 Ms. N. Leela Samuel Andhra Pradesh 2 Ms. Sunita Kumari Bihar 3 Ms. Geeta Sayasinh Thakore Dadar & Nagar Haveli 4 Ms. Bhanuben R. Patel Dadar & Nagar Haveli 5 Ms. Aneetha Abraham Daman & Diu 6 Ms. Eliza Rodrigues Goa 7 Ms. Gomti Dadwal Himachal Pradesh 8 Ms. Vijayalakshmi Banerjee Haryana 9 Ms. Kamla Dahiya Haryana 10 Ms. P.K. Indira Kerala 11 Ms. Kochuthresiamma Thomas Kerala 12 Ms. Rathi Shedthy Karnataka 13 Ms. Salve Dropadi Tukaram Maharashtra 14 Ms. Shakila Bashir Shaikh Maharashtra 15 Ms. Vandana Narayan Rao Uikey Maharashtra 16 Ms Shobha Samuel Yohanna Maharashtra 17 Ms. Thongam Memcha Devi Manipur 18 Ms. Hoikhochin Haokip Manipur 19 Ms. Bisilda Langstieh Meghalaya 20 Ms. Itees Muktieh Meghalaya 21 Ms. Themkhoneng Nagaland 22 Ms. K. Kannammal Puducherry 23 Mr. Hemendra Kumar Rajasthan 24 Ms. Asha Sen Rajasthan 25 Ms. Annamma Samuel Rajasthan 26 Ms Jayalakshmi Vadivel Tamil Nadu 27 Dr. Jeyaseelan M. Devadason Tamil Nadu 28 Ms. Leela Masih Uttar Pradesh


Sl. No. Name 29 Ms. Maya Bisht 30 31 32 33 34 35 Ms. Aparna Bhusan Ms. Amrita Edwin Ms. Pushpa Evelyne Singh Ms. Niang Neikim Simte Ms. Y. Flora Thangam

State/Department Uttarkhand West Bengal Chandigarh Delhi Delhi Karnataka

Major General HJ Bhullar, VSM Defence

IL&FS Infrastructure Debt Fund Signed MoU with Eight Public Sector Banks
IL&FS Infra Asset Management Limited (IAML), an Asset Management Company (AMC) promoted by IL&FS Financial Services Limited (IFIN) to manage the IL&FS Infrastructure Debt Fund (IIDF), on 13 May 2013 signed a Memorandum of Understanding (MoU) with eight Public Sector Banks (PSBs) including Allahabad Bank, Bank of India, Canara Bank, Central Bank of India, Indian Bank, Indian Overseas Bank, Oriental Bank of Commerce and UCO Bank for acquisition of infrastructure loans. Signing this landmark MoU which will pave the way for setting-up of more such infra debt funds and financing thereof. IIDF will complement domestic banks in providing required funding to infrastructure sector and would be integral part of the IL&FS Groups efforts in taking Indias infrastructure growth story to the next level.

14-MAY-2013 Monetary Assistance under IAY Hiked and Centre's share of Funds Transferred to States
The Union Government of India on 13 May 2013 hiked the monetary assistance by 25000 rupees under the Indira Awas Yojana (IAY), the housing scheme for the poor, giving priority to the scheduled castes, tribes and minorities. The cost for 250 square foot housing unit has gone up to 70000 rupees in plain areas and 75000 rupees in hilly and difficult areas from 45000 rupees. The Union Government under the new guidelines of the Indira Awas Yojna has decided to transfer the share of its funds to the State Governments rather than making a district based allocation. The Union Governments assistance got procurement of a homestead site to the states has been doubled for landless poor from 10000 rupees to 20000 rupees. The changes has been brought in following the agreement reached between the Government and the Jan Satyagraha on 11 October 2012 at Agra, also known as the Agra Agreement on Land Reforms in which 10-point agreement was signed by the Rural Development Minister Jairam Ramesh at Agra. Indira Awas Yojna (IAY) Indira Awas Yojna is a flagship scheme of the Union Ministry of Rural Development to address the rural housing needs of providing grants for construction and upgradation of dwelling units of BPL families. Indira Awaas Yojana (IAY) was launched in May 1985 as a sub-scheme of Jawahar Rozgar Yojana. It is being implemented as an independent scheme since 1 January 1996.

Pakistani Authorities barred Ashraf from leaving Country on Corruption Charges

The former Prime Minister of Pakistan, Raja Pervez Ashraf on 13 May 2013 was barred from Federal Investigation Agency (FIA), of Pakistan from leaving the country over allegation of corruption in setting up the Rental Power Projects. His name has been placed on the Exit Control List. The immigration authorities and airports of the country were ordered by FIA to ensure that none of the accused in the Power Project Scam case including Raja Parvez Ashraf leaves Pakistan. Earlier, the National Accountability Bureau of Pakistan (anti-corruption agency) has decided to file a case over the Rental Power Projects after the 11 May 2013 polls. The charges against Ashraf dates back to his tenure as the Power Minister of Pakistan.

Reserve Bank of India imposed Restrictions on Gold Import by Banks

The RBI on 12 May 2013 imposed restrictions on gold import by banks in order to moderate the


demand of gold for domestic use. The RBI decided to restrict the import of gold on consignment basis by banks, only to meet the genuine needs of exporters of gold jewellery. The RBI stated that the decision is based on the recommendations of the Working Group on Gold that had suggested aligning gold import regulations with the rest of the imports for creating a level playing field between gold imports and other imports. The restrictions have come into effect immediately.

Uttar Pradesh to Frame Law to ensure Time-bound Clearances to Industries

The Uttar Pradesh government on 13 May 2013 announced its decision to frame an exclusive law to ensure time-bound issuance of clearances to industries. The mandate of the proposed Uttar Pradesh Industrial Services Guarantee Act includes provisions for delivering notified services within stipulated time limits and fixing accountability of licensing authorities for the delay. The imposition of penalty on erring officers has also been proposed. In the first phase, 14 clearances from seven departments - industries, electrical safety, fire safety, power, pollution control, labour and factories - will be included under the proposed act.

Stability Certificate of Chepauk Stands at M.A. Chidambaram Stadium Cancelled

The stability certificates of all the nine stands of M.A. Chidambaram Cricket Stadium Chepauk was cancelled by the Tamil Nadu Government on 13 May 2013. Three stands I, J and K were sealed by the Chennai Cooperation on 13 May 2013 on charges of unauthorized building at the cricket stadium. This action of the authorities of Tamil Nadu came up as a follow up after the Supreme Court granted an interim stay against the 6 February 2013 order of the Madras High Court that favoured the Tamil Nadu Crickets Association to use the stands. The Madras High Court in its decision had set aside the orders of different authorities of Tamil Nadu namely Chennai Metropolitan Development Authority, Tamil Nadu Housing and Urban Development Department, the Chennai Corporation and the Additional Commissioner of Police, in 2011 and 2012 that restrained the State Cricket Association from using the reconstructed stands in the stadium.

Harvansh Singh, Deputy Speaker of MP Assembly died due to Cardiac Arrest

Harvansh Singh, the Deputy Speaker of Madhya Pradesh Assembly died on 14 May 2013 due to cardiac arrest in Barra of Seoni District. Harvansh Singh, 65, is now survived by his wife Pawan Bai, a daughter and two sons. About Harvansh Singh He was born on 11 November 1949 in Bindari Village of Chhindwara He was a senior congress leader and a former Minister and held many portfolios in Madhya Pradesh like Public Health Engineering, Transport and Home departments He was elected from Keolari Assembly seat of Madhya Pradesh in 2008, for the first time he was elected as member of Madhya Pradesh State Legislative Assembly from the same seat in 1993 He served Seoni district Youth Congress Committee as its President in 1971 He was the Vice president of MP State Handloom in 1983 to 86 and also the Chairman for the same from 1986 to 88. He became the General Secretary of Madhya Pradesh Congress Committee in 1992. He served as a Cabinet Minister during the Digvijay Singh Government in Madhya Pradesh

Total Value of Mineral Production During March 2013 was 20475 Crore Rupees
As per the data released by Ministry of Mines on 14 May 2013, the index of mineral production of mining and quarrying sector in March 2013 was higher by 16.5 percent compared to that of the preceding month. The mineral sector has shown a negative growth of 2.9 percent during March 2013 as compared to that of March 2012. The total value of mineral production (excluding atomic & minor minerals) in the country during March 2013 was 20475 crore rupees. The contribution of coal was the highest at 7766 crore rupees (38 percent). Next in the order of importance were: petroleum (crude) 5888 crore rupees, iron ore 2530 crore rupees, natural gas (utilized) 1992 crore rupees, lignite 595 crore rupees and limestone 391 crore rupees. These six minerals together contributed about 94 percent of the total value of mineral production in March 2013. Production level of important minerals in March 2013 were: coal 650 lakh tonnes, lignite 54


lakh tonnes, natural gas (utilized) 3112 million cu. m., petroleum (crude) 32 lakh tonnes, bauxite 1677 thousand tonnes, chromite 348 thousand tonnes, copper conc. 11 thousand tonnes, gold 135 kg., iron ore 113 lakh tonnes, lead conc. 18 thousand tonnes, manganese ore 215 thousand tonnes, zinc conc. 161 thousand tonnes, apatite & phosphorite 226 thousand tonnes, dolomite 579 thousand tonnes, limestone 250 lakh tonnes, magnesite 16 thousand tonnes and diamond 4408 carat. In March 2013 the output of diamond increased by 58.3 percent, chromite 35.1 percent, lignite 29.1 percent, coal 25.3 percent, zinc conc.16.6 percent, copper conc. 15.0 percent, petroleum (crude) 12.1 percent, natural gas (utilized) 10.5 percent, lead conc. 10.0 percent, limestone 9.6 percent, bauxite 9.3 percent, iron ore 7.7 percent, gold 6.3 percent, manganese ore 6.2 percent, dolomite 2.3 percent and apatite & phosphorite 0.1 percent. However the production of magnesite decreased by 0.3 percent.

Asom Ratna Award for the Year 2012 Presented to Indira Goswami
The President of India, Pranab Mukherjee presented the Asom Ratna Award for the year 2012 to Indira Goswami (posthumously) and the Srimanta Shankardeva Award for the year 2008 to Sharmila Tagore on 13 May 2013 at a function at Guwahati, Assam. Sharmila Tagore has contributed richly to Indias cultural life as a goodwill ambassador for UNICEF and Chairperson of the Indian Film Censor Board. Indira Goswamy was a legendary story teller and prolific novelist who courageously advocated social change in a very volatile period in Assams history. She would be particularly remembered for her role as a mediator in talks between armed militants in Assam and the Government of India. In all her works, Mamoni as she was known, had focused on women, the disadvantaged and the oppressed in society. By creating a consciousness about these problems, she was able to sow the seeds of change. The Srimanta Sankardeva award would propagate the teachings of Swami Srimanta Shankardeva, an Assamese saint, scholar and social reformer who lived in the 15th and 16th Centuries. His Neo-Vaishnava movement repudiated caste barriers and sought to create an egalitarian civil society based on the shared values of fraternity, equity, humanism and democracy

Exports in India grew up by 1.6 percent in April 2013

Exports in the month of April 2013 recorded a growth of 1.6 percent and stood at 24.16 billion US Dollar as against 23.7 billion US dollar in April 2012. The surge in gold imports pushed the trade deficits to 17.7 billion US dollar. This is the fourth consecutive month that exports have witnessed growth. Imports of gold and silver in April 2013 doubled by 138 percent to 7.5 billion US dollar from 3.1 billion US dollar in April 2012. The merchandize imports rose by 10.9 percent to 41.95 billion US dollar bringing up the trade deficit by more than 72 percent from March. Widening of trade deficit attributed to the high gold imports. The targeted exports for the current fiscal 2013-14 set by the Union Government is 325 billion US dollar.

Islamic scholar Asghar Ali Engineer died at Santa Cruz, Mumbai

Asghar Ali Engineer, a noted Islamic scholar died on 14 May 2013 after a prolonged illness in Suburban Santa Cruz, Mumbai. The 73 year old Asghar is survived by his son and a daughter. About Asghar Ali Engineer He was born in 1940 and completed his BSc in civil engineering from Vikram University From 1980, he edited the journal named the Islamic Perspective and during 1980s he published a series of books on Islam and communal violence in India. His books were based on his investigations in the post-independent India. The USA International Student Assembly and the USA Indian Student Assembly honoured him with Distinguished Service Award in 1987 For communal harmony, he received Dalmia Award in 1990 He was honoured with three doctorate degrees He was the Chairman of the Centre for Study of Society and Secularism (CSSS) founded in 1993 after the 1992 Babri Mosque destruction He edited Indian Journal of Secularism He also edited a monthly paper named Islam and Modern Age and published Secular Perspective, a fortnight paper He received the National Communal Harmony Award in 1997 He won the USA Award from the Association for Communal Harmony in Asia in 2003


Calcutta High Court directed the State Government to hold 3-phased Panchayat Polls
The High Court of Calcutta on 14 May 2013 directed the State Government of West Bengal to conduct the Panchayat Elections in three phases in the state. The division bench of the Calcutta High Court that comprised Chief Justice Arun Mishra and Justice Joymalya Bagchi directed the state government to announce full notification in consultation with the State Election Commissioner within three days. The High Court in its orders also directed the state government to conclude the poll process by 15 July 2013 and asked it to deploy armed police in each and every hypersensitive and sensitive polling booth. Earlier, the West Bengal Government moved to the Division Bench seeking stay on the orders that was passed by the single bench of the Court by Justice Vishwanath Sammadar to conduct of Panchayat polls.

The Cyclonic Storm MAHASEN formed over Bay of Bengal

MAHASEN: The Cyclonic Storm formed over Bay of bengal in the Second week of May 2013 The cyclonic storm MAHASEN formed over Bay of Bengal in the second week of May 2013 and it is expected to skip Chennai and move towards Bangladesh-Myanmar coast in the next couple of days. The storm will move initially north-northwestwards during the next 12 hours and thereafter northeastwards towards the Bangladesh-Myanmar coast. Under its influence, rainfall would occur at many places. Squally winds would prevail along the Andaman and Nicobar Islands. Fishermen of the Islands are advised not to venture into the sea during the next 48 hours. The Met office has also forecast rain or thundershowers at a few places over Tamil Nadu, Puducherry, Coastal Andhra Pradesh and South interior Karnataka.

Glimpses of the India Story; Multi-Media Initiative on UPA Commitment Unveiled

A multi-media initiative that captures the nine years long journey of development across various sectors through programs and policies of Government was launched on 13 May 2013 by the Minister of Information & Broadcasting, Manish Tewari. The initiative aims on rights framework, inclusive growth and urban renewal for Peoples empowerment The multi-media initiative launched with a theme Glimpses of the India Story and it is designed to underscore the impact of the policy decisions at ground level for participatory governance and inclusive growth within a right framework. The Content of the initiative reinforced the development of the trajectory that has been institutionalized by the Government via passage of legislations in past nine years. The multi-media initiative would be put across on television, radio, print and outdoor publicity with the objective of informing and appraising the public to encourage greater participation in these efforts. The multi-media initiative has been given a tagline - Meelo hum aa gaye Meelo hamien jaana hain as it underscores the need to continue on the path ahead to ensure that the country is able to face the challenges of economic growth and social equity. The initiative will also summarize real life stories based on the human development agenda of the Union Government that has touched people and played a role in transforming their lives. This initiative will be disseminated in 11 regional languages across the country in order to reach out to the poor and the most marginalized people in all corners of the country.

Britain launched Super Priority Visa Service for Travellers from India
Britain on 12 May 2013 launched super priority same-day visa service for urgent travellers from India. Britain has launched this kind of service anywhere in the world. The super priority visa service was announced by British Prime Minister David Cameron during his visit to India in February 2013. The Main points of new Visa Service are as following: For the first time, Indian visitors will get the option of a same-day visa to the UK. This new service can be particularly useful for business. The Super Priority Visa is an optional service, which costs an additional fee of 600 pounds in addition to the standard fee for the type of visa which was applied for. Applicants are required to submit their applications after completing an online form, by appointment, before 9. 30 am. If an application is successful, the applicant can collect the visa by 5.30 pm the same day in New Delhi or by 6.30 pm the same day in Mumbai.


The new service is available to customers who applies for a six-month or two-year multiple entry visit visa (excluding student visitors) and who have travelled before to the UK, Australia, US, New Zealand, Canada or a Schengen country within the last five years. The service is also available to visa applicants sponsored by companies who are members of the UK's Business Express Programme. As per an estimate, India is considered as the UKs biggest visa operation in the world. It processes around 400000 applications each year and most of the applications are approved (97 percent of UK Business visit visas and 86 percent of visit visas).

Pakistan Election Result 2013: Nawaz Sharif's party PML-N bagged 126 Seats
The Election Commission of Pakistan on 14 May 2013 announced results of 272 National Assembly seats, with Pakistan Muslim League-Nawaz heading the count with 126 seats, followed by the Pakistan Peoples Party with 31 seats. The voting took place for all parliamentary constituencies of Pakistan to elect 342 members for the National assembly, including 60 seats reserved for women and 10 for non-Muslims, simultaneously voting took place for the four Provincial Assemblies of Punjab, KPK, Sindh and Balochistan as well. Over 4600 candidates a contested at the centre for National Assembly seats, while 11000 candidates contested at provincial levels.

As per the article 51 (6) c of the constitution of Pakistan the members to the seats reserved for women which are allocated to a Province under clause (3) shall be elected in accordance with law through proportional representation system of political parties' lists of candidates on the basis of total number of general seats secured by each political party from the Province concerned in the National Assembly. Also with reference to the article 51 (6) e members to the seats reserved for non-Muslims shall be elected in accordance with law through proportional representation system of political parties' lists of candidates on the basis of total number of general seats won by each political party in the National Assembly. Pakistans General election 2013 was the election to the 14th parliament of Pakistan. Former Pakistani Prime Minister Nawaz Sharif declared winner which was followed by a historic election. The voting has taken place in all parliamentary constituencies of Pakistan, to elect Members (MNAs) to seats in the National Assembly, the lower house of parliament. It is worth mentioning here that the current National Assembly completed its constitutional term on 18 March 2013, five years after the first session of the National Assembly elected during the 2008 general election. Pakistan Election 2013 was intended to elect members of the National Assembly of Pakistan, the lower house of the Majlis-e-Shoora (the nation's parliament).Pakistan's opposition parties, the Imran Khan`s Pakistan Tehreek-e-Insaf (PTI), and Pakistan Muslim League Nawaz (N) were the major contenders for the general Election. The 63-year-old Sharif, belongs to Pakistan Muslim League Nawaz (N) party. He had twice served as premier. Pakistan Muslim League-N attained an overpowering lead with 130 seats. The


first runner up is Imran Khan`s Pakistan Tehreek-e-Insaf (PTI) with 37 seats and the last is Pakistan Peoples Party (PPP) with 31 seats. The Pakistan Peoples Party (PPP), which had a tally of 124 in the 2008 elections and ruled the country for five years with the support of the MQM and the Awami National Party. It is important here to note that to win a simple majority, a party or coalition would have to bag 137 of the 272 National Assembly seats for which polls were held. Another 70 seats, reserved for women and non-Muslims, will be allocated to parties according to their performance in polls. To have a majority in the 342-member National Assembly, a party or coalition would need 172 seats. The Senate or upper house of the parliament is currently controlled by the PPP. Party wise Statistics of the Provincial Assemblies Election
Punjab PML-N 211/297 IND PTI PML-Q Seats 41/297 20/297 8/297 293/297 Sindh PPPP 65/130 MQM IND PML-F 35/130 8/130 7/130 KPK 34/99 14/99 13/99 Dec-99 98/99 Balochistan PMAP Oct-51 PML-N IND JUI-F Seats Aug-51 Aug-51 Jun-51 48/51



Seats 122/130

Facts to remember about Provincial Assemblies Election PML (N) leads Punjab Province with 211 out of 297 seats PPP Party leads the Sindh Province of Pakistan with 65 out of total 130 seats Pakistan Tehreek-e-Insaf (PTI) party leads the KPK Province with 34 out of total 99 seats. PMAP(Pakhtunkhwa Milli Awami Party) leads the balochistan province with 10 out 21 seats. Some facts about the Election 4670 candidates standed for 272 seats in a first-past-the-post system in the 342-member lower house. Sixty seats reserved for women and 10 for non-Muslim minorities are distributed by proportional representation based on the parties share of the directly elected seats. A total of 10955 candidates contested in elections for Pakistan s four provincial assemblies in Punjab, Sindh in the south, Khyber Pakhtunkhwa in the northwest and Baluchistan in the southwest. Only 161 women standed for the national assembly, 3.5 percent of the candidates VOTERS. There are 86.2 million registered voters -- 37.6 million women and 48.6 million men.

Study:India has highest Number of Diarrhoeal Deaths

The GEMS (Global Enteric Multicentre Study) showed that diarrhoeal disease has the highest rate of incidence in India in comparison to other sites. Diarrhoea is responsible for one in every ten child deaths during the first five years of life globally. The other sites included Bangladesh and Pakistan in Asia and Mali, Kenya, Gambia and Mozambique in Africa. Each site was provided by field workers who visited each household to record births, deaths and migrations two to four times every year they also got weekly updates of births and deaths in children 0-59 months. A study on the causes of severe diarrhoea in young children was conducted at seven sites in sub-Saharan Africa and South Asian countries including India. It found that rotavirus is responsible for most such cases. According to WHO (World Health Organisation) estimates, between 90000 and 153000 children die from rotavirus infection in India each annually. According to the WHO, more than 2.3 million children below five years of age die in India each year. Of these, about 334000 die from diarrhoearelated diseases are responsible for 334000 deaths.

WPI Inflation eased to 4.89 percent in April 2013 as Per Official Data
As per official data released on 14 May 2013, WPI Inflation eased to 4.89 percent in April 2013. Declining price of food items, including fruits and vegetables caused a three and a half year low. Inflation based on the Wholesale Price Index (WPI) stood at 5.96 percent in March 2013. In April, 2012, it was 7.50 percent. This is the lowest level of inflation since November, 2009 when it was 4.78 percent. The major data are given as following: WPI inflation in the manufactured items category declined to 3.41 percent in April from 4.07 percent in March.


Also, inflation in food articles category, which has a 14.34 percent share in the WPI basket, came down to 6.08 percent. Inflation in this category was at 8.73 percent in March 2013. The easing in food inflation was helped by a sharp drop in prices of vegetables. Inflation in vegetables stood at (-) 9.05 percent in April 2013, against (-)0.95 percent in March 2013. The inflation in fruits declined to 0.71 percent during April 2013 as compared to 4.71 percent in March 2013. However, the rate of price rise in onion was high at 91.69 percent for the month of April, as against inflation rate of 94.85 percent in the previous month. Inflation for February was revised upwards to 7.28 percent from 6.84 percent as per provisional estimates. The retail inflation, as measured by consumer price index, came down to single digit at 9.39 percent in April after many months, indicating that inflationary expectation is on declining trend. Inflation in wheat eased to 13.89 percent in April, as against 19.87 percent in the previous month. Potatoes too saw decline to (-)2.42 percent, from 20.06 percent in March. Inflation rate in rice and cereals eased to 17.09 percent and 15.63 percent, respectively, in April 2013. Pulses prices declined marginally to 10.28 percent during the month. While the inflation rate in egg, meat and fish category stood at 10.44 percent, for milk it was 4.04 percent. For the fuel and power category, it was lower at 8.84 percent in April as compared to 10.18 percent in March 2013.

15-MAY-2013 Reserve Bank of India directed Banks to follow Clean Note Policy
The Reserve Bank of India (RBI) on 14 May 2013 directed banks to follow the Clean Note Policy strictly and issue clean currency notes to public. RBI issued a notification that also asked the banks to do away the process of stapling the currency notes and to secure the note packets with paper bands. In its notification to the banks, the RBI also directed to sort notes into re-issuable and nonissuable notes and to withdraw soiled notes from circulation in the market. Banks have also been asked to stop writing of any kind on watermark window of bank notes as it disfigures the watermark impression and recognition becomes difficult As per RBI, on an average 20 percent of notes is disposed off after getting soiled every year and in the fiscal year 2012-13 that ended on 31 March 2013 the number of such soiled currency bills stood at over 13 billion units.

Matt Prior named England's Cricketer of the Year for 2012-13

Matt Prior was named the England cricketer-of-the-year for 2012-13, in an acknowledgement of the Sussex wicket-keeper's consistency with both bat and gloves. Prior was presented with his award at Lords on 14 May 2013. The 31-year-old is now one of the first names on the team sheet after England captain Alastair Cook. The latest demonstration of his worth to the side came with his match-saving unbeaten hundred in the drawn third Test against New Zealand in Auckland in March.

India and Netherlands signed MoU in the Field of Urban Planning

India and Netherlands on 14 May 2013 signed a Memorandum of Understanding on Technical Cooperation in the field of Spatial Planning, Water Management, and Mobility Management at Hague, Netherlands during the visit of Kamal Nath, Minister for Urban Development and Parliamentary Affairs. The Memorandum of Understanding will enable greater cooperation in the areas of - Spatial planning, urban and regional planning and development and architecture; Water management in terms of Water supply and sanitation and governance structures; Transport management and transport systems and infrastructure; Energy-efficient and sustainable built forms. Under the MoU, a Joint Working Group would be set up that would prepare annual work programmes. It was decided that the first seminar under the MoU would take place in June 2013 at Rotterdam to be followed by another seminar in India later in the year. During Kamal Naths visis it was noted that the bilateral trade between India and Netherlands is increasing at a brisk pace and it was agreed that there is a need to expand the trade basket to other important areas such as Urban Development.

Government constituted GoM to consider Functional Autonomy of CBI

The Union Cabinet of India on 14 May 2013 approved constitution of a Group of Ministers (GoM)


to consider the matter relating to an appropriate law being made to provide for the independence of the Central Bureau of Investigation (CBI) and its functional autonomy. It has also been decided, with the approval of the Prime Minister that the composition of the GoM will be as under: 1. P Chidambaram, Minister of Finance; 2. Sushilkumar Shinde, Minister of Home Affairs; 3. Kapil Sibal, Minister of Communications and Information Technology and Minister of Law and Justice; 4. Salman Khurshid, Minister of External Affairs; and 5. V Narayanasamy, Minister of State in the Ministry of Personnel, Public Grievances and Pensions; and Minister of State in the Prime Ministers Office. The GoM will prepare the draft law and the draft affidavit to be filed in the Supreme Court in the context of the Writ Petition (Civil) No. 120 of 2012, within three weeks. The GoM will be serviced by the Department of Personnel and Training.

Union Government decided to Advertise Best Practices on RTI

The Union Government on 14 May 2013 decided to publicise best practices on implementation of Right to Information (RTI) Act by public authorities all over the country. For the Publicity purpose, a write ups about the best practices on RTI being adopted by public authorities all over the country, has been invited by the citizens from the Department of Personnel and Training (DoPT), which is a nodal body for the implementation of RTI Act. The Department of Personnel and Training (DoPT) is on their way to publish a compendium of best practices on the RTI being adopted by a government department or public authority. As per the DoPT, the best 20 write-ups are supposed to be selected for inclusion in the compendium. The individuals whose write ups are selected for inclusion in the compendium would be rewarded with amount of 25000 each. Provisions laid by DoPT for the Write ups The write up should carry need felt or problem faced by the public authority leading to adoption of such practice, details of the said practice including its scope, financial implications, and deployment of resources such as manpower, infrastructure, etc and lessons learnt by the concerned department during its implementation. The neatly typed write-ups should be of about 5000 words and must reach the department before 28 June 2013. The Centres flagship Right to Information Act, which was enacted in 2005, mandates timely response to citizen requests for government information. One has to pay a fee of 10 Rupees for seeking information. It is important here to note that the DoPT had last in month of April 2013 also started a unique facility of submitting RTI applications and fees online. It has created a portal which is intended to help people use their right to know through online medium.

Puducherry Government launched Dairy Development Scheme

The Puducherry administration in Month of May 2013 launched a central government-sponsored scheme to promote dairy activities and to enhance socio-economic status of the farmers in the Union Territory. Under the Rashtriya Kisan Yojana Scheme 400 beneficiaries have been selected in the first phase of which 27 have been extended a subsidy of 50000 Rupees each running to a total of 13.5 lakh Rupees. However, the rest would be sanctioned the amount in the next phase. The scheme ideates distribution of 50 per cent subsidy for each farmer starting dairy projects. As per the scheme, each farmer is supposed to get 50000 Rupees to launch a mini-dairy project with three milch cows. This subsidy is meant to enable the farmers to purchase milch animals and meet part of the expenditure to raise infrastructure for cow shed. The Government has also formulated a separate scheme to assist farmers living below poverty line and initially 47 farmers would be extended a total subsidy of 12500 each as 50 per cent subsidy for purchasing a milch cow. The efforts were made to ensure improved milk production in Puducherry as there is a coiling demand for milk from different sectors.

India Unveiled its First Indigenously developed Rotavirus Vaccine

India on 14 May 2013 unveiled its indigenously developed Rotavirus Vaccine named Rotavac after the Phase-III clinical trial of low cost rotavirus Vaccine. The Rotavac that has demonstrated


strong efficacy and excellent safety profile; if gets its approval by the Drugs Controller General of India (DCGI) than will be made available in the market at a rate of 54 rupees per dose. Approx 453000 child across the world dies every year due to Rotavirus diarrhea and following the recent reports every year approx one lakh children below five years in India die due to severe diarrhea that is caused due to Rotavirus bacteria. India accounts for 22 percent of the global deaths that occurs due to diarrhoea-causing rotavirus. Rotavac vaccine has been developed under a public-private partnership and is the third such vaccine that will hit the Indian market. The previous two vaccines cost more than 1000 rupees per dose and thus remain out of reach from the hands of millions in developing and third world nations. It is an oral vaccine that is administered in infants in three dose course at ages of six, ten and fourteen weeks, which is given to a child along with the Universal Immunisation Programme (UIP) vaccines recommended to be given to children.

European Union decided to issue Ban on Pesticides that Harm Bees

The European Union made decision in May 2013 to impose a continent-wide ban on the Pesticides namely neonicotinoids that harm bees. The EU came up with a decision to ban the use of the pesticides after scientists came up with the conclusion that chemicals posed an acute risk to honeybees that pollinate many of the crops grown in Europe on a commercial scale. Bees as pollinators play a vital role in food production. The hives of honeybees across the globe are dying off in the phenomenon that is known as Colony Collapse disorder. The European countries in May 2013 voted on banning neonicotinoids, which is mainly found in pesticides. Fifteen of the twenty seven member states that included France voted for a two-year restriction on the neonicotinoids which is not enough to form a qualified majority. The voting was made amid strong opposition from chemical companies. The final decision is now with the European commission, which will implement the ban. According to EU rules, the Commission will now impose a two-year restriction on neonicotinoids. Neonicotinoids are mainly produced mainly Switzerland's Syngenta and Germany's Bayer. The conservationists called up for a ban on the use, whereas the organizations related to agriculture claimed that farmers will face hardship and will have an impact on food production, which will cost Europe a loss of billions of Euros due to loss of crop yield. As per a United Nations report released in 2011, the bees and other pollinators like butterflies, birds and beetles do a worldwide work of pollination that worth 203 billion dollar every year.

Tamil Nadu Government decided to Implement Coastal Disaster Risk Reduction Project
The Tamil Nadu Government in the month of May 2013 decided to implement a 1481 crore Rupees Coastal Disaster Risk Reduction Project with financial assistance from the World Bank. As per the Chief Minister, J. Jayalalithaa, 121 Coastal Safety Centres, roads up to 50 km to these centres and 439 warning systems is supposed to be facilitated under this project. The Project would be managed by Tamil Nadu Disaster Management Authority, with the necessary infrastructure facilities that would be created for the Authority. The Government also has decided to make underground electric line in the Coastals district of Cuddalore and Nagapattinam to reduce loss during natural disasters. As per the TN government, the work would be started by the end of year and is supposed to be completed in the next five years.

INSEE confirmed that France has slipped into Recession

Preliminary data released from the INSEE (National Institute for Statistics and Economic Studies) statistics agency on 14 May 2013 revealed the fact that the French economy has entered a shallow recession after shrinking by 0.2 percent in the first quarter of the year. The economy entered into recession because of weak exports, investment and household spending. France is already suffering number of jobless people; the number of unemployed people in France went up to all time high in March 2013. The country's economy shrank by the same amount in the last quarter of 2012. France has record unemployment and low business and consumer confidence. As per the INSEE statistics, investment in France contracted by 0.9 percent in the first quarter of the year. Similarly business investment went down by 0.8 percent and exports went down bu 0.5 percent in the second quarter. The household consumption also recorded a fall of 0.1 percent; this is the first downfall in household consumption since second quarter of 2012. Recession is defined as regular contraction of GDP for consecutive two quarters. In case of France, the economy shrank by 0.2 percent in last quarter of 2012.


Earlier this month, the European Commission warned France would enter recession this year and said the eurozone would shrink by 0.4 percent. The European Commission has also offered French Economy a time limitation of two years to bring the public deficit of the nation in line with the European Union limit of 3percent of GDP.

Angelina Jolie underwent Double Mastectomy to Reduce chances of Breast Cancer

Angelina Jolie, the Hollywood actress on 14 May 2013 revealed that she has undergone double mastectomy for reduction of her chances of getting Breast Cancer. She took the decision of undergoing mastectomy as she was tested positive for a genetic mutation known as BRCA1. BRCA1 presents a high risk of developing breast and ovarian cancer in a female. Angelina Jolies step of revealing the secret of mastectomy was largely applauded as this will influence many women across the world with strong family histories of breast cancer to get genetic tests done. Earlier before Angelina Jolie, in the history of breast cancer the defining moment occurred in 1974, when Betty Ford, the first lady of United States wife of Gerald Ford reveled about her mastectomy to spread awareness about breast cancer. About BRCA1 and BRCA 2 BRCA 1 BRCA1 is a human caretaker gene that produces a protein called breast cancer susceptibility gene 1, responsible for repairing DNA. It has been linked with the hereditary breast and ovarian cancer in a female and prostate cancer in men. It also increases chances of cervical, uterine, pancreatic and colon cancer. BRCA 2 BRCA 2 is a protein found inside cells and is called breast cancer susceptibility gene 2. BRCA 2 also belongs to the tumor suppressor gene family and the protein encoded by these genes are involved in repair of the chromosomal damage and plays an important role in free repair of DNA double strand breaks.

President of Nigeria declared State of Emergency in Three States

Nigerian president, Goodluck Jonathan on 14 May 2013 imposed a state of emergency in three states of Borno, Yobe and Adamawa in an effort to curb the increasingly violent attacks by radical Islamist armed group Boko Haram. The decision was taken after a series of attacks on security forces and government targets by Boko Haram in its northeast stronghold in May 2013 to restore public safety and security. A large number of troops are being deployed immediately in these areas. A similar move was made in January 2012 following an increase in Boko Haram attacks, but earlier in that case the pronouncement only applied to specific local government areas in four states. It has been seen that from Boko Haram fighters have surrendered in last few weeks. It was found that Boko Haram has killed more than 2000 people since it started insurgency in 2009. About Boko Haram Boko Haram is a jihadist militant organisation based in the northeast of Nigeria and north Cameroon. It is an Islamist organisation which strongly opposes man-made laws and westernization. The Organisation was founded by Mohammed Yusuf in 2001 and it seeks to establish sharia law in the country. The group is also known for attacking Christians and bombing churches. The group identified internationally following sectarian violence in Nigeria in July 2009, which had left over 1000 people dead. In year 2011 the group was accountable for at least 450 killings in Nigeria.

Uttanur Rajamma, the Bandaya Writer Died

Uttanur Rajamma, 70, a veteran Bandaya writer died on 14 May 2013 at his residence in Chintamani in Chickballapur district of Karnataka. About Uttanur Rajamma Uttanur Rajamma belonged to Kolar district of Karnataka She advocated for the emancipation of women From 1970s she is identified for with the Bandaya literary movement

Union Govt set up 6-Member Expert Committee to measure Backwardness of States 72

The Union Government on 15 May 2013 had set up an expert Committee under the supervision Raghuram G Rajan, Chief Economic Adviser to evolve a composite index to measure backwardness of states. The panel is set up in consistent to the Budget announcement, and it can also invite other experts as Special Invitees for discussions. The decision was taken amid demands for special category status by Bihar. The backwardness of the States will be consider in terms of measures like distance of the State from the national average under criteria such as per capita income and other human development indicators and for evolving a Composite Development Index of States. The Committee is supposed to submit its report within 60 days. The other members of the committee are Shaibal Gupta, Bharat Ramaswami, Najeeb Jung, Nirija G Jayal and Tuhin Pandey. It is important here to note that the present criteria for determining backwardness are based on terrain, density of population and length of international borders.

US Scientists Created frist Cloned Human Embryo

A group of US Scientists in second week of May 2013 declared that they have succeeded in creating a cloned human embryo using the technique that helped in developing the cloned sheep in 1996. The scientists took fifteen years to create the cloned embryo. The team of scientists developed the embryo using skin samples of a womans egg to develop an early cloned human embryo. Aim of this research is development of a source of stem cells not a baby. These can be helpful in repair of damage created after heart attack or brains of patients of Parkinsons disease. Somatic Cell Nuclear transfer technique was used in development of the embryo and it is the same technique that was used for developing the Ship Dolly, the first cloned animal in 1996.

16-MAY-2013 Delegation from Tourism & I&B Ministry participated at Cannes Film Festival
A delegation from Information and Broadcasting and Tourism Ministry has participated in the 66th Cannes Film Festival for showcasing the heritage of Indian Films, in third week of May 2013. The main objective of this participation is promotion of the country as filming destination. The Cannes Film Festival 2013 that was inaugurated on 15 May 2013 is celebrating the 100th anniversary of Indian Cinema. The tourism ministry has set up an Incredible India booth at the event and will give a presentation on Incredible India to provide opportunities of business networking. The I&B and Tourism Ministry of Indian Union has signed an MoU with each other to promote cinema as a sub brand of Incredible India at different International Film Festivals.

India-Lanka FTA Handbook released in Colombo by Indian High Commission

Indian High Commission in Sri Lanka launched a handbook on Free Trade Agreement (FTA) in Colombo on 15 May 2013. FTA has helped Sri Lanka increase its exports to India manifold and the trade imbalance has decreased as a result of the favourable terms of the Free Trade Agreement between the two countries. Sri Lankan businessmen need to take advantage of Indias vast market and aim at becoming a part of supply chains in Indian industry. India-Sri Lanka Free Trade agreement was the first of such agreements that was signed by India. It had come into effect in the year 2000 and has helped trade between the two countries grow from 400 million dollars to over 5 billion dollars in a decade.

Union Government hiked Backward Region Grant Fund Entitlement for Uttar Pradesh
The Union Government of India on 15 May 2013 announced increment in the Backward Region Grant Fund (BRGF), entitled to Uttar Pradesh. The fund has gone up to 818.17 crore rupees for 201314 from initial 667 crore rupees. To release the funds for Uttar Pradesh, the Union Ministry of Panchayati Raj has directed the state Government to submit its annual plan by 25 June 2013. 35 districts of Uttar Pradesh are entitled for the BRGF Scheme. In 2012-13, Uttar Pradesh failed to get its share of BRGF grants as the Government ordered a probe into the alleged irregularities that was committed during the Mayawati regime and it stopped the work which was being carried on in the BRGF beneficiary districts.


RBI decided to Launch Inflation Indexed Bonds (IIBs)

The RBI (Reserve Bank of India) on 15 May 2013 decided to launch Inflation Indexed Bonds (IIBs). The first tranche of the IIBs 2013-2014 for 1000 to 2000 crore rupees will be issued on 4 June 2013. The maturity period of these bonds will be 10 years. The total issue size will be 12000 to 15000 crore rupees in 2013 to 14. The RBI will do on monthly basis to attract household savings of up to 15000 crore rupees so as to discourage investments in gold. After the first tranche, bonds will be issued on the last Tuesday of every month. While the first series of the bonds will be open for all class of investors, the second series issue - beginning October - will be reserved exclusively for retail investors.

Sreesanth and two others of Team Rajasthan Royals Arrested for Spot-Fixing
Indian fast bowler, S. Sreesanth and his two team mates from Rajasthan Royals namely Ajit Chadila and Ankeet Chavan were arrested by Delhi Police on 16 May 2013 on charges of Spot Fixing in Indian Premier League (IPL). The three cricketers were arrested from Mumbai and will be brought to Delhi for being produced in a Court. Apart from the three cricketers the police also arrested seven bookies. Both the cricketers and the bookies are charged under two sections of Indian Penal Code, Section 420 (cheating) and Section 120B (criminal conspiracy). The arrests made were a part of the investigations being conducted by the Special Cell of the Delhi Police over months on alleged Spot Fixing in the cash rich IPL. Spot Fixing Spot Fixing is an illegal activity in a sport, in which any part of the game may be an over or a ball is fixed between the player and the bookies. Under this, the player agrees to play in accordance to the agreement made before the game with the bookies, so that they can bet upon the same. Although betting on any sport is illegal in India.

International Monetary Fund (IMF) approved 1.3 bn Dollars loan for Cyprus
The International Monetary Fund on 15 May 2013 approved a three-year, 1.3 billion dollars loan for supporting Cyprus attempts to stabilize its financial sector and to bring the Governments deficit under control and restore economic growth. The IMF loan to Cyprus is basically a part of a rescue package of 10 billion euros (12.9 billion dollars) counterfeit in March 2013 with the eurozones bailout fund. The loan was approved by IMFs executive board which also includes an immediate disbursement of 110.7 million dollars. Counting the IMF disbursement, Cyprus has received about 2.7 billion dollars in the third week of May 2013 from its international lenders. The Luxembourg-based European Stability Mechanism, which is a eurozone bailout fund, on 13 May 2013, announced that it had approved its first bailout tranche for Cyprus and transferred an initial 2 billion euros (2.6 billion dollars). The rest of the tranche up to 1 billion euros will be transferred by 30 June 2013. The loans approved by the European Stability Mechanism help to maintain financial stability in the euro area and buy time for Cyprus. It is important here to note that in the eurozones longrunning fiscal crisis, Cyprus followed Greece, Ireland and Portugal to become the fourth eurozone country since 2010 to agree to a full bailout.

UN adopted Resolution on Syria calling for Political Transition

The UN General Assembly on 15 May 2013 adopted a resolution (non-binding in nature) calling for a political transition in Syria and condemning President Bashar al-Assad Government for its increasing use of heavy weapons. A majority of 107 states voted to adopt the resolution. There were 12 votes against and 59 abstentions. Russia was fiercely opposed to the resolution, termed it as unbalanced and inadequate to address adequately atrocities allegedly committed by rebel groups.The resolution was drafted by Arab states who have supported the rebels. The resolution asked for immediate financial support to neighbouring countries, which are hosting 1.5 million refugees.The UN resolution on Syria highlighted the dire situation of the 4.25 million internally displaced people.

Bihar Plan for 2013-14 Finalized at 34000 Crore Rupees

The Annual Plan for the year 2013-14 for Bihar was finalized in New Delhi on 15 May 2013 at a meeting between Deputy Chairman, Planning Commission, Montek Singh Ahluwalia and Chief


Minister of Bihar, Sh. Nitish Kumar. The plan size was agreed at 34000 crore rupees. In the total proposed outlay of 34000 crore rupees for Annual Plan 2013-14, the share of agriculture sector has been enhanced to 9.99 percent while that of social services has been enhanced from 36.5 percent in 2012-13 to 40.59 percent in the annual plan proposal for 2013-14. Bihar has introduced Mission Manav Vikas in its plan programme which would help in monitoring human development index in the State through 20 monitorable targets. Bihar was growing at a slower rate than the country for decades till around 2001-02. However, the State picked up the pace of growth in the recent past and has been doing very well in terms of growth performance in the last few years. It was one of the best performers in terms of growth during 2002-03 to 2008-09 second only to Gujarat. The Gross Domestic Product of the State (during 2004-2005 to 2012-13) increased from 77781 crore rupees in 2004-05 to 157957 crore rupees in 2012-13 at the constant (2004-2005) prices. The per capita Net State Domestic Product (NSDP) at constant (2004-2005) prices also increased from 7914 rupees in 2004-2005 to 14268 rupees in 2012-13. Per Capita NSDP of Bihar has remained significantly lower than the per capita NSDP at all India level. The States per capita NSDP has however increased by 84.13 percent from 7749 rupees in 2005-06 to 14268 rupees in 2012-13 compared to an increase of 50.5 percent in per capita NSDP at the national level during the same period. The Bihars per capita NSDP is still 36.45 percent of the all India per capita NDP in 2012-13. The literacy level of the state has improved to 63.82 percent in 2011 from 47.53 percent a decade ago, but is still lower than the 74.04 percent literacy rate achieved at all India level. However, female literacy rate is a cause of concern as the male literacy in Bihar is 73.39 percent and female literacy is 53.33 percent compared to the national literacy level of 82.14 percent for males and 65.46 percent for females in 2011. The Commission pointed that the Accelerated Irrigation Benefit Programme (AIBP) is being revamped so that the gap between potential created and potential utilised in the irrigation sector is reduced substantially.

Union Govt ratified 8.5 Percent interest on PF Deposits for 2012-13

The Finance Ministry on 16 May 2013 approved payment of 8.5 per cent interest rate for 201213 from 8.25 per cent in the previous fiscal, which will benefit over 5 crore EPFO subscribers. The approved payment of interest rate will enable the Employees Provident Fund Organisations (EPFO) which is the apex decision making body to settle claims at 8.5 per cent and also credit interest into the accounts of subscribers for 2012-13. It is important here to note that the Central Board of Trustee (CBT), decision on interest rate is required to be notified by the Finance Ministry. Only after notification, the interest is credited into the accounts of subscribers. Also, as per the norms, EPFO is anticipated to announce the rate of interest on PF deposits before the commencement of the financial year. But for the past few years, there has been delay in announcement of the rates. This time, the rate of interest is being notified after the end of the financial year.

India was granted an Observer Status by Arctic Council

India on 15 May 2013 was successful in getting the observer status in the Arctic Council along with five other nations namely China, Italy, Singapore and South Korea. This step of the Arctic Council will give India a foothold in the resource rich Arctic Ocean with the melting of the ice. As India will get an access from navigation to oil and gas exploration. The observer status was assigned to India after a meeting held at Kiruna, Sweden. With this success, India will get an opportunity to contribute its scientific expertise mainly its capabilities in polar research to the work of the Arctic Council and support its objectives. The observer status of India in the Arctic Council if seen at the realpolitik level; India will get an access for hydrocarbon exploration that is offered in the Arctic Circle. For this India will have to join its hands with one of the five countries gearing up for the purpose among US, Canada, Russia, Denmark and Russia. If seen with the perspective of geographical distance than Russia is an ideal partner for India and to make this happen India will have to take a firm stand on the Lomonosov Ridge and the Mendeleev Ridge for Russia. Russia claims that the Lomonosov Ridge and the Mendeleev Ridge are the extension of its continental shelf. This support will also bring in Indias chances to get access in the rich deposits of Arctic Belt and utilize the North Sea Route. About Melting Ice of Arctic Circle and Interests of Nations and Researchers The level of melting ice in the Arctic sea in September 2012 went down to the new lows and attracted interest of nations and researchers towards it. Various nations placed their interest in


the region for exploration of its rich mineral resources and navigation purposes. India has its Arctic research station named Himadri since 2008 that is located at the International Arctic Research base, Ny-Alesund at Spitsbergen, Svalbard, Norway. The station is operated by the National Centre for Antarctic and Ocean Research. Indias approach in the Arctic Circle since 2008 has always been purely scientific. China became the first Asian country to navigate the area with a three-month sea voyage in an ice breaker across the Arctic Circle.

Union Government of India decided to launch DBTL Scheme

Government of India decided to launch Direct Benefit Transfer for LPG (DBTL) scheme in 20 high Aadhaar coverage districts from 1 June 2013. The scheme aims to curb leakages and prevent black-marketing and provide subsidy to consumers in their bank accounts. All LPG consumers are advised to immediately do the following to avail of subsidy in their bank accounts: Get an Aadhaar number if they dont have one at Aadhaar enrollment centers. Open a bank account with Aadhaar number if they do not have one by going to a bank branch with Aadhaar number. If they already a bank account then link their Aadhaar number with their bank account by visiting their branch or through a request form available with LPG distributors and deposit it in the drop boxes placed at LPG distributors premises. Provide Aadhaar numbers to LPG distributors for linking with LPG consumer number. For the benefit of LPG consumers, OMCs have provided the facility on their web-sites to check whether the Aadhaar number has been attached to LPG consumer number/bank account. For the benefit of LPG consumers, who cannot complete formalities by 1 June 2013, a grace period of three months is being given to complete the formalities. After this period, all consumers who have not completed the formality will get LPG cylinders at market price, without any subsidy, till they complete the same. The salient features of the DBTL scheme are described below: All LPG consumers desirous of availing subsidy will have to provide the Aadhaar number to Oil Marketing Companies and also to their bank accounts for linking with their LPG consumer numbers and bank accounts respectively. All Aadhaar linked domestic LPG consumers will get an advance in their bank account as soon as they book the first subsidized cylinder even before delivery. This is to reduce their financial burden when they purchase the first LPG cylinder after launch of scheme at market rate. As soon as, the first cylinder is delivered to such consumers, subsidy eligible on date of delivery will again get credited in the bank account, which will then be available for the purchase of the next cylinder at market rate. Thus, subsidy eligible on each such domestic cylinder, up to the cap of 9 cylinders per year will be directly transferred to the Aadhaar enabled bank account of the consumer. All LPG consumers who are not Aadhaar linked will have three month grace period to link LPG consumer number and bank account with Aadhaar number and during this period they will continue to get the LPG cylinders at subsidized rate, as they are getting today, up to their entitlement. After the grace period, LPG cylinders will be sold to all domestic LPG consumers at market price. However, the subsidy will be transferred to only those who have linked Aadhaar in LPG database and Bank account. Others will not get any subsidy. After the grace period, as soon as a consumer links the Aadhaar number to bank account and in LPG database, one-time advance and subsidy transfer will re-commence as per balance entitlement. Consumers who do not provide Aadhaar will continue to get LPG cylinders at market price.

Lausanne Talks succeeded to devise Roadmap to bring India Back to Olympic Fold
The International Olympic Committee (IOC) on 15 May 2013 agreed in principle on a roadmap to bring India back in the Olympic Fold after a meet with Indian Olympic Association (IOA) in Lausanne. The International Olympic Committee on 4 December 2012 put a ban on India its failure to adhere the Olympic Charter. The meet of Lausanne was of a great importance with Indian perspective as it will decide the sporting future of India, after the ban. The IOC in its meet with the IOA stated that during a meet of the interim body would take over from the IOA and hold fresh elections under the amended IOA constitution. This announcement was made by the IOC after the Union Sports Minister Jitendra Singh convinced IOC on the Sports Bill that the Bill as a sign of government interference is necessary for good governance of Indian


sports. IOC suspended IOA; India facing ban from Olympics

5th IBSA Women's Forum Resolution was approved by India, Brazil and South Africa
India, Brazil and South Africa approved the fifth India Brazil South Africa (IBSA) Womens Forum Resolution, in New Delhi on 16 May 2013. The main points of the resolution are as following: The joint resolution stated that the three countries are committed to recognizing the key role of government with the support of civil society to ensure and accelerate all efforts towards achieving gender equality and empowerment of women. It also acknowledges the Forums shared commitment to various international conventions on rights of women and girls. The resolution recommends the following- to end violence against women and girls; to work towards economic empowerment of women, especially rural and marginalized women; to promote gender responsive budgeting, and equitable and sustainable development. Through this Resolution the three countries commit to working for womens empowerment and for fighting gender-based discrimination and violence against women in all forms. The platform of the IBSA is for enhanced efforts for continuously engendering the policies and programmes of the three countries and for mainstreaming the marginalized sections. The violence perpetuates discrimination against women, and there are increasing instances of growing violence against women, which strengthens the need for concerted efforts to fight such discrimination and injustice. IBSA platform has the three largest democracies from the southern continent and their joint efforts through this forum will go a long way in mainstreaming the debate of womens issues.

US Tax Agency Head Steve Miller resigned over targeting Conservative Political Groups
Steven Miller, the acting director of the Internal Revenue Service on 15 May 2013 had resigned amid the criticism over the tax agency's handling of conservative groups seeking tax-exempt status. The Scandal came into highlight when it was found that officials studying tax exempt status applications singled out groups with names including phrases like Tea Party or Patriots, which could thus be expected to be fiercely opposed to US President Barack Obama. Steven Miller, said in a message to colleagues there was a strong and immediate need to restore public trust in the nation's tax agency. The scandal has been one of several to enervate the White House in recent days. Analysing the situation President Barack Obama asserted that had reviewed the Treasury Inspector General for Tax Administration (TIGTA) report on the IRS's targeting of conservative groups and found the misconduct uncovered was inexcusable.

Government notified New Guidelines for the Indira Awas Yojna

The government on 13 May 2013 approved new guidelines for the Indira Awas Yojna Scheme for rural poor. The new guidelines are as following: Building Toilets has been made compulsory under the Indira Awas Yojna. Manual scavengers, freed bonded labourers and tribal groups will be given preference in allotments. The allocation for each dwelling unit was increased from 45000 rupees to75000 rupees. In Maoist-affected and hilly regions, the allocation would now be 75000 rupees from the existing 48500 rupees. Landless labourers which were given 10000 rupees for buying land would now be given 20000 rupees. Apart from the above guidelines, a major change was introduced which is that funds will be given to only consolidated proposals from state governments and not district-level organisations. Indira Awas Yojana is a flagship scheme under the rural development ministry. It addresses rural housing needs by giving grant for construction of dwelling units of BPL families.

Union Cabinet raised OBC Creamy layer Criteria to 6 Lakh Rupees

The Union Government of India on 16 May 2013 revised the criteria for creamy layer of Other Backward Classes (OBCs) from 4.5 lakh rupees to 6 lakh rupees to avail benefits of reservations in government jobs and admissions to central educational institutions. The decision came up in a view to increase the income limits in tune with the increase of the


consumer price index. This would enable more people to take an advantage of reservation benefits that are extended to OBCs. Creamy layer is the income limit beyond which OBCs are not eligible for quotas

Union Government cuts Import Tariff Value of Gold and Silver

The Union government on 16 May 2013 slashed the import tariff value of gold and silver to 466 Dollars per ten grams and 761 Dollars per kg, respectively. The decision to slash the import tarrif was taken Central Board of Excise and Customs (CBEC) after considering weak global price trend. Earlier in April 2013, the tariff value of gold was 472 Dollars per ten grams, while silver was 762 Dollars per kg. Government has cut the import tariff value of gold as international prices of gold and silver showed a declining trend as investors shifted funds to equities with firming up of dollar. Tariff value is actually the base price on which the customs duty is determined to prevent underinvoicing. Important Points to remember The government has also hiked the tariff value of crude palm oil to 831 per tonne from 827 Dollars per tonne, while RBD palm oil has been reduced to 836 per tonne from 857 Dollars tonne in 27 April 2013. The tariff value of crude soyabean oil and their varieties of palm oil have also been raised. In the London market, gold prices fell by 1.6 per cent to 1370.82 Dollars per ounce, while silver declined by 1.8 per cent to 22.20 dollars an ounce. Similarly, gold prices in the national capital fell by 500 Rupees to 26800 Rupees per ten grams, while silver dropped by 1000 to 43700 rupees per kg.

17-MAY-2013 Planning Commission finalized the Annual Plan for Maharashtra

The annual plan for the financial year 2013-14 of 49000 crore rupees was finalized for Maharashtra on 16 May 2013 by the Planning Commission of India (PCI). Deputy Chairman of Planning Commission, Montek Singh Ahluwalia and Chief Minister of Maharashtra, Prithviraj Chavan together finalized the plan. In addition to this the PSE plan at 31500 crore rupees was also fixed during the meeting making an aggregate plan of 80500 crore rupees. The planning commission praised Maharashtra government for making appreciable efforts to reduce poverty in the state as the poverty ratio of the state registered a decline of 13.7 percent point to 24.5 percent in 2009-10 when compared from 2004-05. The commission also suggested the state to make efforts on its way to reduce head-count ratio of consumption poverty by 10 percent points, by the end of 12th five year plan. During the 11th Five Year Plan, the state achieved an average GSDP growth rate of 8.6 percent against the targeted 9.1 despite of the global slowdown. In 2011-12, the per capita NSDP of Maharashtra was recorded at 64951 rupees, which stood ahead of the per capita NSDP of Haryana that was 62825 rupees and Tamil Nadu that was 54550 rupees. During the 11th five year plan Industry Sector it achieved a growth rate of 8.1 percent against the target of 8.0 percent and was higher than the growth rate achieved by the country at 7.2 percent. In the health sector, the IMR, IMMR, child malnutrition and anaemia among women in Maharashtra are less than the national average with IMR and IMMR in the State is 25 (SRS, 2011) and the 104 (SRS, 2007-09) respectively and in rural area the IMR (30) and urban IMR (17). Maharashtra is looking forward to make concerted efforts towards improvement of literacy rate and elimination of the gender and social gap in school enrolment by the end of 12th Five Year Plan. The state also laid attention towards the large gender gap in literacy rate of 14.34 percentage point with literacy rate of male at 89.92 percent and female 75.48 percent. In the 12th Plan period, the State Government announced that drought proofing, balanced industrial growth along with infrastructure development would be given priority. Social sector would continue to get priority and investment from private sector would be encouraged. As part of decentralised planning decided to reserve 50 per cent of elected seats in the District Planning Committees for woman and to strengthen the district level plan, the State Government has proposed an allocation of 5,200 crore rupees in the District Plan.

Star India launched Second English Movie Channel, Star Movies Actions
Star India in the month of May 2013 launched its new movie channel, Star Movies Actions, which is targeted at male audiences.


The new channel is supposed to replaces the companys action brand Fox Action Movies. The channel had strong tie-ups with the top four Hollywood studios and has a library of nearly 300 exclusive movies. The channel is going to begin with having premiers of recent action movies that includes Abraham Lincoln, Vampire Hunter and Taken 2. The channel will also be airing big franchisee movies such as Rambo, Fast and Furious, Resident Evil and Jaws. On the other hand, there are several new brands targeting males that were being launched across categories such as automobiles, two-wheelers, handsets and consumer goods, and the company was banking on these brands for Star Movies Action. The company has planned an aggressive marketing plan to promote the channel. While the band Pentagram has sung a special channel anthem for Star Movies Action, the company would be spending on promotion across mediums.

Union Cabinet gave its Nod for Establishment of the Gandhi Heritage Sites Mission
The Union Cabinet of India on 16 May 2013 approved the establishment of the Gandhi Heritage Sites Mission. The objective behind this approval is to conserve and restore the heritage sites associated with the Mahatma Gandhi, the Father of the Nation. Gandhi Heritage Sites Mission will be assigned with the identification, collation and assessment of the information on Gandhi Heritage material, its management and deployment. The mission will also be responsible for identifying the conservation methodology as well as the priorities for documents and objects, with its point of view of archival storage and museology and for physical structures and sites, as also guidelines for their subsequent maintenance. The mission will disseminate the information that is based on relevant material for identification, collation and assessment and conservation would be through a web based portal, audio/visual (like digital prints and CDs), publications. It will also communicate through core sites and specify the function, use and significance of the site, wherever necessary. The mission will also preserve the 2000 important sites identified by the panel that was chaired by Gopalkrishna Gandhi, ex-Governor of West Bengal along with the other 39 core sites.

Researchers discovered New species of Dragonfly in Goa

Researchers in the Month of May 2013 discovered a new species of dragonfly from a wildlife sanctuary in Goa. The new species was spotted at Bhagwan Mahaveer Wildlife sanctuary at Collem in south Goa by researchers Parag Rangnekar and Rohan Naik in collaboration with Dr K A Subramanian, the scientist with Zoological Survey of India, Kolkata. The species is scientifically named as (Idionyx Gomantakensis), and is restricted to evergreen forest. As per the researchers, most of the species of this genus are known from South India, while Goa has two. It is important here to note that, the research was conducted under the banner of Mineral Foundation of Goa and supported by the Department of Science and Technology, Government of Goa. The government wild be conducting focused surveys could result in discovery of more species from the state. Some Points to Remember about Dragonfly Dragonflies and Damselflies belong to the Order Odonata. This group of insects is dependent on water for completion of their life-cycle and hence the quality of water defines the species composition. The group was an excellent indicator of the health of a water body and can be effectively used in bio-monitoring.

ISRO planned to launch GSLV D5 to place the Communication Satellite GSAT14 in Orbit
Scientists at ISRO will launch a Geosynchronous Satellite Launch Vehicle, GSLV D5 from the spaceport in Sriharikota in July 2013. The announcement of the launch schedule was announced by Union Minister, V Narayanasamy on 16 May 2013. The GSLV D5 that is fitted with the indigenously developed Cryogenic Engine will place a communication satellite GSAT-14 into orbit. Russia denied India from offering a cryogenic engine as a result of which, the Indian scientists started their work for development of the GSLV D5 with cryogenic engine. About GSAT-14 It is a satellite with six extended C band and 6 Ku band transponders


The communication satellite GSAT-14 will enhance the communication transponder capacity Earlier, two attempts of ISRO to launch the satellites GSLV-F06 carrying satellite GSAT-5P on 25 December 2010 and GSLV-D3 carrying satellite GSAT-4 on 15 April 2010 resulted in a failure. GSLV-F06 Launch Ended in a Failure

Andhra Pradesh State Government allocated 500 cr Rupees for Agriculture Loans
The AP State government in the Month of May 2013 announced that it had allocated 500 crore Rupees in the 2013-14 budget to meet the expenditure under interest free agricultural loans. The AP government has been implementing this scheme for years to save farmers from interest burdens on agricultural loans. As per the Finance Minister of Andhra Pradesh Anam Ramnarayana Reddy, any farmer who repays his agricultural loan within a period of 12 months is eligible for the interest free agricultural loan scheme under which the government has already disbursed 140 crore Rupees. The State Government had released 1662 crore Rupees to clear dues under the input subsidy scheme to drought-hit tehsils of the state, besides another 428 crore Rupees released as input subsidy to cyclone affected areas. It is worth mentioning that the dues to farmers would be paid directly to their accounts and requested farmers to open no-frills accounts in any commercial bank convenient to them.

Nirbhay Sharma appointed Governor of Arunachal Pradesh

Nirbhay Sharma on 16 May 2013 appointed as governor of Arunachal Pradesh as the term of present incumbent Gen (retd) J J Singh ended in January 2013. The tenure of 65 year old Nirbha Shrama will come into effect from the day he assumes charge of his office, a Rashtrapati Bhavan. A brief insight into Career of Nirbhaya Sharma Nirbhaya Sharma is an MPhil in Defence Studies and Master of Science in Military Sciences, spent 40 years in the Army before retiring in 2008. He served eight tenures in Jammu and Kashmir and the north east in various command assignments beside holding important assignments in Military Operations, Planning, Crisis Management, Material Management and UN Peace Keeping Missions. He was appointed as Member of UPSC in May 2008 and after completion of his five year stint, Sharma is taking over as the governor of Arunachal Pradesh, the third retired Army officer to do so after Gen Singh and Lt Gen (retd) S K Sinha. He was heading the Army division when the Uri- Muzaffarabad road was opened and his men were involved in the construction of 'Aman Setu', a bridge connecting the two sides of Kashmir. He was also a part of the Airborne Assault Group, the first Indian Army Unit to enter Dacca (Dhaka) during 1971 war.

IBSA Resolution to Empower the Women signed by Krishna Tirath

The Union Minister for Women and Child Development Krishna Tirath on 16 May 2013 signed the Fifth India-Brazil-South Africa (IBSA) Womens Forum Resolution at the end of the three day meet of IBSA Womens Forum. The signed joint resolution, will allow the three countries to recognize the key role of Governments of these countries with the support of the Civil Society to ensure and accelerate efforts towards achieving gender equality and empowerment of women. The resolution was signed between Krishna Tirath, her South African counterpart Lulama Xingwana and Maria do Carmo Godinho Delgado, Secretary of Evaluation of Policies and Economic Autonomy of Women of Brazil. To end violence against women for development of the equitable society and model for effective delivery of financial benefits to poor families, South Africa is running a Stop Rape Campaign and on similar grounds Brazil is running a campaign named Bolsa Familia of Brazil. The platform of IBSA was constituted to enhance the efforts for continuous engendering of the policies and programmes of India, Brazil and South Africa and to bring in the marginalized section into the mainstream. IBSA (India Brazil-South-Africa) Trilateral IBSA is a trilateral, developmental initiative between India, Brazil and South Africa to promote South-South cooperation and exchange. Formation of IBSA for the first time was discussed during the G-8 meeting that took place in Evian, France in 2003. Further, the External Affairs Minister of India, Yashwant Sinha, the Foreign Affairs Minister of Brazil, Celso Amorim and the Minister of Foreign Affairs of South Africa, Nkosazana Dlamini Zuma met in Brasilia on 6 June 2003 and


farmalised the launch of IBSA Dialogue Forum with an adoption of the Brasilia Declaration. Womens Forum of IBSA The Womens Forum initiative launched under the People-to-Peoples Forum by the heads of the IBSA states came up during the second IBSA Summit in South Africa in 2007. The forum came into existence with the aim of cooperation between the three countries with the objective of promoting gender equality and empowerment.

UN Public Service Award 2013 for MP Cottage and Village Industry Department
Cottage and Village Industry Department of the Madhya Pradesh Government on 16 May 2013 bagged United Nations Public Service Award for year 2013 for their initiative named Graamin Haat. The United Nations honours outstanding public welfare works at international level under different categories every year. The Cottage and Village Industry Department of Madhya Pradesh was successful in winning the honour of United Nations for their initiative of Graamin Haat. The initiative of Graamin Haat was started in the state with the aim of strengthening and empowering the women's self-help groups. The initiative has helped the self help group in becoming more self-reliant economically and ensured participation of women in social decisions. The award will be presented to Kanchan Jain, the Principal Secretary of the Cottage and Village Industry Department of Madhya Pradesh on 27 June 2013 in Manama, the Kingdom of Bahrain. Apart from Graamin Haat other Indian initiatives those were recognized and won award include
Institution Chief Ministers Office Initiative Mass Contact Programme (MCP)

District Administration, Dhanbad Swavalamban

United Nations Public Service Award for year 2013 The United Nations Public Service Forum Day and Awards ceremony will take place in Manama, the Kingdom of Bahrain, from 24 to 27 June 2013 with its theme, Transformative e-Government and Innovation: Creating a Better Future for All. The Forum is organized by the United Nations Department of Economic and Social Affairs (UNDESA), Division for Public Administration and Development Management (DPADM) in partnership with the United Nations Entity for Gender Equality and the Empowerment of Women (UN Women), and the United Nations Economic and Social Commission for Western Asia (UN ESCWA), in collaboration with the hosting Government of the Kingdom of Bahrain. The United Nations Public Service Awards 2013 will be given in three different categories and they are Category 1 Preventing and Combating Corruption in the Public Service Category 2 Improving the Delivery of Public Services Category3 Fostering participation in public policy decision making through innovative mechanisms Category 4 Promoting whole-of-government approaches in the Information Age Category 5 Promoting Gender- Responsive Deliveries of Public Services

Legendary Footballer, David Beckham announced his Retirement

Legendary Footballer and Former England captain David Beckham on 16 May 2013 announced his retirement from professional football and gave an end to his illustrious career of more than two decades. He will retire from the professional football after the end of this season. The 38 year old footballer recently helped his team to win a league title in the fourth country with Paris Saint Germain. About David Beckham Beckham earned 115 caps for England, a record for an outfield player, and won the Champions League, six Premier League titles and two FA Cups with Manchester United. David Beckham joined Manchester United as a 14-year-old in 1992 and made 398 appearances, winning six Premier League titles and the Champions League. He made his debut for England in 1996 and made 115 appearances for the country He is the most capped outfield player of in the history of England By securing the Paris Saint-Germain's Ligue 1 wins, he has won 19 trophies of which 10 are League titles He is the only English player to win Championship titles in 4 different countries


Beckham was a key member of the Treble Team and he helped it in addition of Champions League, 2 FA Cups, 1 Intercontinental Cup and 4 Community Shields to a long list of its honours. (Treble Team is a term that is used in football association to refer a team that wins three trophies in a single season). He is the first English player who scored in 3 consecutive World Cup Finals Beckham has the record of joint-second most goal assists in European Championship Finals history He is among few of the British players who played for Real Madrid, AC Milan, LA Galaxy and Paris Saint-Germain He is the first British player to reach 100 champions league appearances He was successful in winning La Liga Title in the final season of Spain as well as has been the winner of US MLS Championship twice He helped the team to win French Ligue 1 Championship in 19 years

Life Saving Drugs Cheaper by up to 80% under New Drug Price Control Order
The department of pharmaceuticals on 16 May 2013 notified the Drug Price Control Order 2013 and with its coming into effect prices of 348 essential medicines including life saving drugs will go down by up to 80 percent. As per the new Drug Price Control Order 2013, the National Pharmaceutical Pricing Authority (NPPA) 2012 is authorized to regulate the prices of the 348 essential medicines as it is listed in the National List of Essential Medicines (NLEM) 2011. The government has notified the Drug Prices Control Order (DPCO) 2013, with effect from 15 May 2013 and replaced the 1995 order. In its previous order prices of 74 bulk drugs were regulated and as per the new order all dosages and strengths specified in the NLEM will be under price control. The ceiling prices of the NELM drugs will also be decided as per the National Pharmaceutical Pricing Policy and the policy states that the ceiling price of an essential drug will be the simple average of all brands with a market share of at least 1 per cent.

Union Cabinet Approved Setting up Rashtriya Smriti for Last Rites of National Leaders
Rashtriya Smriti, New Delhi: The Union Cabinet gave approval for setting up Rashtriya Smriti to perform the last rites of the departed national leaders. The Union Cabinet of India, on 16 May 2013 gave approval for setting up Rashtriya Smriti at the Samadhis Complex near Ekta Sthal in New Delhi. The Rashtriya Smriti is established to perform the last rites of the departed national leaders. The national leaders include Presidents, Vice Presidents, Prime Ministers, former Presidents, Vice Presidents, Prime Ministers and such other leaders which will be decided by the Cabinet. It is important to note that previously, separate memorials for the national leaders were created near the Rajghat which consumed a lot of space. Therefore, the Cabinet decided that no new Samadhi would be developed for departed national leaders anymore and that the Rashtriya Smriti would be used for performance of last rites of these leaders. The Smriti area will also provide for the space for last rites apart from space for the public gathering.

World Telecommunication and Information Society Day Celebrated World Wide

17 May 2013: World Telecommunication and Information Society Day World Telecommunication and Information Society Day was celebrated on 17 May 2013. It is celebrated on this day every year to raise awareness about the positives of Information and Communication Technologies, ICTs, among people. The day aims to make information and communication more accessible to people living in remote areas. The theme of the day this year was - ICTs and improving road safety. The day marks the founding of the International Telecommunication Union, ITU, and signing of the first International Telegraph Convention in 1865. It focuses on filling up the technological gaps, promoting connectivity and bridging physical distances through the Internet, television and phone. This year's theme is significant in the wake of a UN report attributing 1.3 million deaths each year and 20-50 million people getting injured in road accidents mainly in developing countries. Driver distraction and road-user behaviour while driving are among the leading contributors to road accidents. The ITU is behind developing standards for safe communication systems in vehicles to elimi-


nate distraction while driving.

18-MAY-2013 MDNIY Designated WHO Collaborating Centre in Traditional Medicine (Yoga) Status
The Department of Yoga Therapy and Training of Morarji Desai National Institute of Yoga (MDNIY) was designated as the WHO Collaborating Centre in Traditional Medicine for a period of four years in the month of May 2013. In 2008, MDNIY started its collaboration with WHO Country Office under the biennium programme of traditional medicine and developed Yoga Resource Centre. It also initiated disease-specific booklets of Yogic interventions for healthcare. It is important to note that WHO lacks its own institutional network but identifies institutions from member countries to work in specific areas of health. They are designated the WHO Collaborating Centres status. At present, there are 21 WHO Collaborating Centres for Traditional Medicine all over the world, but there is not even a single centre in India despite availability of large number of AYUSH institutions and 32 Collaborating Centres for Modern Medicine. Department of AYUSH took the matter with WHO and eventually two institutions of AYUSHMorarji Desai National Institute of Yoga, New Delhi and Institute of Postgraduate Teaching & Research in Ayurveda, Jamnagar, Gujarathave were designated as WHO collaborating centres in traditional medicine. WHO collaborating centres are institutions such as research institutes, parts of universities or academies, which are designated by the Director-General of WHO to carry out activities in support of the Organizations programmes. At present, there are more than 800 WHO collaborating centres in over 80 Member States working with WHO on areas such as nursing, occupational health, communicable diseases, nutrition, mental health, chronic diseases and health technologies all over the world. The overall network of 23 designated WHO Collaborating Centres for Traditional Medicine aims at assisting the WHO in implementation of WHO strategies and resolutions relating to traditional medicine. The activities which will be taken over by MDNIY as the WHO Collaborating Centre include: Development and dissemination of standardized health promotion Yoga modules for various target groups (Children, Adolescents and Women of reproductive age, Geriatric population, and Mental Health promotion). Preparation and dissemination of consumer information on proper use of Yoga. Organization of capacity building workshops and training programmers on the role, scope, practice and evidence -based use of Yoga in non-communicable disease. Meta-analysis of Yoga research studies for documentation and promotion of evidence-based uses of Yoga. About Morarji Desai National Institute of Yoga Morarji Desai National Institute of Yoga is the autonomous organisation under Department of AYUSH, Ministry of Health & Family Welfare. This institute was established as the Centre of Excellence for undertaking activities of education, training, therapy and research in Yoga. MDNIY is involved in multifarious Yoga promotion and propagation activities.

India and USA announced Co-Operation in Knowledge Sector

India and the US 16 May 2013 decided to expand co-operation in knowledge sector. This was announced during a round table discussion on Advances in US-India Academic Partnership in Washington. It was also stated during the discussion that eight more awards finalized under the SinghObama Knowledge Initiative and it will be jointly announced during the forthcoming Indo-US strategic dialogue in New Delhi next month. Eight such awards were announced last year. He said there is a proposal to place young Indian faculty in best of US institutions to enhance their capabilities. Under this plan 126 post doctorals have been selected. India sought US co-operation in promoting skill building through community colleges. Touching upon the possibilities of a wide ranging co-operation in education sector between the two countries, the co-operation should be supportive in the field of ICT, digital world, promoting quality research and innovation and boosting vocational education system. 20 billion dollars of additional resources will be pumped in the state system to ensure access and excellence in tertiary education through National Higher Education Mission (RUSA in vernacular). The round table organised by the International Institute of Education at Washington discussed


issues such as collaboration in the field of Community Colleges and promoting massive online courses and Technology Enabled Education. It also discussed students mobility, particularly encouraging US students to visit India. India and USA also discussed issued relating to improvement of school education, teacher educators, assessment of schools and community participation in school education.

Apple achieved 50 billion apps download milestone; left behind Google

Total number of downloaded applications from the Apples iPhone App Store passed the 50 billion milestone on 15 May 2013. The first app was downloaded from the Apples iPhone App Store on 11 July 2008. The 50 billionth downloaded apps from Apples iPhone App Store alone, signifies the growth of this sector, over last five years. The person who downloaded this 50 billionth app received a gift card worth 10000 US dollar from Cupertino Tech Company. This is done by Apple every time when one of its digital stores achieves a milestone. In April 2013, Apple announced that its developers received 9 billion US dollar during that time, which indicated towards gigantic new economy. Apple receives 30 percent of the revenue from app customers, which meant that the company made around 3.86 billion US dollar from this app store alone. An increase in the demand of smartphones has led to creation of more and more apps which serve to all kinds of audience. Apps have gained tremendous popularity on the smartphones.

Zhejiang University in China Produced Worlds Lightest Substance Called Carbon Aerogel
Zhejiang University in China in May 2013 announced that the team of scientists produced an ultra-light substance known as carbon aerogel, which has the density of 0.16 milligrams per cubic centimeters. The scientists claimed that this was the lightest material ever produced by anyone. The carbon aerogel is made of granite as well as the carbon nanotubes which can absorb around 900 times its own body weight. The lead scientist, Professor Gao Chao explained that carbon aerogel was structure-wise, just like carbon sponge. When the aerogel with the size of a mug was put on Setaria, then even the grass would not bend. Professor Gao Chao also explained that the carbon aerogel can provide effective solutions to major problems like cleaning oil spills as well as pollution control. What are Aerogels? Aerogels are primarily produced by extraction of liquid component of the gel through supercritical drying. This enables liquid to slowly dry off without having an impact on solid matrix. This means that the solid matrix in gel does not collapse from the capillary action, which would take place with conventional evaporation. First aerogels were manufactured from the silica gels. Samuel Stephens Kistler in 1931 produced aerogels based on tin dioxide, chromia and alumina. First carbon aerogels were developed in late 1980s.

Increased risk of schizophrenia linked to lower IQ: University of Edinburgh

Scientists at the University of Edinburgh found evidence that lower IQ can result in an increased risk of schizophrenia. Genetic risk of schizophrenia increases with lower IQ among those who did not develop the disorder. Even though the scientists could not clearly point out the relation between low intelligence quotient (IQ) and schizophrenia, but certain evidences were found. Schizophrenia is primarily linked with cognitive impairments which can lead to functional disability. Reduction in the cognitive ability can lead to onset of the schizophrenia symptoms. These deficits could also be found in healthy relatives of the people diagnosed with the disease. The authors of the study analysed data from 937 people in Scotland. These people first completed IQ testing in 1947, when they were 11 years of age. They were retested at the age of 70 and the DNA was analysed for estimating the genetic risk for schizophrenia. In the research, it was found that people who had higher genetic risk for the disease had lower IQ at 70 years of age, but not at the age of 11 years.

14th Round of IndiaEU BTIA Negotiation Concluded in New Delhi

The Chief negotiators met in New Delhi from 15 May to 17 May 2013 for 14th round of negotia-


tion for India EU BTIA (Broad-based Trade and Investment Agreement). All issues on the table were discussed. Negotiators felt that some positive movements have been accomplished though many critical issues are still needed to be discussed further. Negotiators reiterated their commitment for a balanced and ambitious agreement. Negotiators on both sides acknowledged that some positive movements were accomplished, however many critical issues still needed to be discussed further. The negotiations included trade in goods, sanitary and phyto-sanitary measures and technical barriers to trade, investment, trade in services, intellectual property rights and geographical indications, competition policy, customs and trade facilitation, trade defence, government procurement, dispute settlement and sustainable development. Negotiations were carried out as per mandate received from the Trade and Economic Relations Committee (TERC).

Compat Ordered 11 Cement Manufacturers to Deposit 630 Crore Rupees

The Competition Appellate Tribunal (Compat) on 17 May 2013 ordered 11 cement manufacturers to deposit an amount of 630 crore Rupees before it heard manufacturers appeal against 6307 crore Rupees fine imposed on them by Competition Commission of India (CCI) in June 2012. Competition Commission of India (CCI) is the competition watchdog for price manipulation as well as cartelization. Compat posted cement manufacturers case for final hearing in the month of August 2013. Compat had ordered the cement manufacturers to deposit a 10 percent amount of total penalty imposed on it by CCI in June 2012. The list of these cement manufacturers include: JP Associates UltraTech Cement Ambuja Cements ACC Binani Cement India Cements Grasim Cements Madras Cements Century Textiles JK Cements Indian unit of France's Lafarge SA All these manufacturers have been ordered to make the payment within one month. Failure of doing so will result in their appeal being dismissed. The spokesperson for JP Associates explained that all the cement manufacturers were looking for different options, which also includes challenging the decision of Compat in Supreme Court. The matter will also be discussed with the Cement Manufacturers Association of India (CMA). CCI imposed highest penalty of 1323.6 crore Rupees on the JP Associates. Additionally, the fine of 73 lakh was imposed on CMA. The penalty was stayed by the Competition Appellate Tribunal, but the desist order as well as the cease order would remain against these manufacturers.

CCEA approved the Same Scale of Allocation to APL Families

The Cabinet Committee on Economic Affairs (CCEA) on 16 May 2013 approved the continuation of the same scale of allocation to APL families during 2013-14 (at the rate of 15-35 kg monthly per family) under the Targeted Public Distribution System (TPDS). As on 1 April, 2013, the total stocks of rice and wheat in the Central Pool is 596.75 lakh tonnes comprising 354.68 lakh tonnes of rice and 242.07 lakh tonnes of wheat. The procurement during the year is expected to be 401.3 lakh tonnes for rice and 441.21 lakh tonnes for wheat. Thus it is expected that there will be sufficient stock of foodgrains in the Central Pool. The CCEA has accordingly approved additional allocation of 41.89 lakh tonnes of wheat and 19.84 lakh tonnes of rice at APL issue prices to States/Union Territories (UTs) for ensuring a minimum allocation of 15 kg per APL family per month in 22 States/UTs and 35 kg per family per month in 13 States/UTs. They are Manipur, Assam, Meghalaya, Tripura, Nagaland, Arunachal Pradesh, Mizoram, Sikkim, Uttarakhand, Jammu and Kashmir, Himachal Pradesh, Lakshdweep and Andaman & Nicobar Islands. The Government of India has been making allocation of foodgrains to the accepted number of APL families at the rate of 15 kg per family per month in 22 States/ UTs and at the rate of 35 kg per family per month in 13 States/UTs under TPDS since June 2011.


Indian women won gold at inaugural FIBA Asia 3x3 basketball tournament 2013
Indian women basketball team won gold in inaugural FIBA Asia 3x3 basketball tournament 2013 in Doha on 17 May 2013. India defeated Mongolia 21-14 in the final play-off. Mongolia had defeated Turkmenistan in the semi-finals. In the 3X3 format, this is the third consecutive gold medal of India. It won gold at South Asian Beach Games in Sri Lanka as well as Asian Beach Games in China in 2012 in the same format. In the Indian team, Geethu Anna Jose, Anita Pal Durrai, Manisha Dange and Pratima Singh were the key players. Indian team won all six games in the tournament. India was placed in the Group B. Geethu Anna Jose won the title of Best Player of the Tournament. India defeated Qatar 21-5 in the quarterfinals and Hong Kong 21-8 in the Semi-finals.

Government cut Import Tariff Value of Gold and Silver

The government on 17 May 2013 cut the import tariff value of gold and silver to 466 US dollars per ten grams and 761US dollars per kg, respectively, considering weak global price trend. Tariff value is the base price on which the customs duty is determined to prevent under-invoicing. Till April 2013, the tariff value of gold was 472 US dollars per ten grams, while silver was 762 US dollars per kg. The notification in this regard was issued by the Central Board of Excise and Customs (CBEC). Besides bullion, the government has hiked the tariff value of crude palm oil to 831 US dollars per tonne from 827 US dollars per tonne, while RBD palm oil was reduced to USD 836 per tonne from 857 US dollars per tonne on 27April. The tariff value of crude soyabean oil and their varieties of palm oil was also raised. Government has cut the import tariff value of gold as international prices of the precious metals showed a declining trend as investors shifted funds to equities with firming up of dollar. In the London market, gold prices fell by 1.6 percent to 1370.82 US dollars per ounce, while silver declined by 1.8 percent to 22.20 US dollars for an ounce. Similarly, gold prices in the national capital fell by 500 rupees to 26800 rupees per ten grams, while silver dropped by 1000 rupees to 43700 rupees per kg.

France became the 14th Country in the World to legalise Gay Marriage
France's President Francois Hollande on 17 May 2013 signed into law a controversial bill to legalise gay marriage. It makes France the ninth in Europe and 14th in the world to do so. The move was opposed by many conservatives and the Catholic Church in France. As of May 2013, thirteen countries (Argentina, Belgium, Brazil, Canada, Denmark, Iceland, France, Netherlands, Portugal, Norway, Spain, South Africa, Sweden), and several sub-national jurisdictions (parts of Mexico and the USA), allow same-sex couples to marry. The Constitutional Council rejected a challenge by the right-wing opposition, clearing the way for Francois Hollande to sign the bill. The first gay wedding will be held 10 days after the bill's signing. In fact, the ruling Socialist Party made the legislation their flagship social reform since being elected in 2012.

Raha Moharrak, the First Arab Woman to reach Everest Summit

RaHA Moharrak, a Saudi woman made history by reaching the Everest summit-the world's highest mountain. Raha became the first Saudi woman and also the youngest Arab to make it to the top of Everest. She is 25 years old. She is part of a four-person expedition which comprises the first Qatari man and the first Palestinian man as well who are attempting to reach the summit. The expedition is trying to raise fund for education projects in Nepal. Moharrak is a university graduate currently based in Dubai and she hails from Jeddah. She had to overcome a lot of barriers to achieve her goal.

19-MAY-2013 45th Session of the Indian Labour Conference Concluded in New Delhi
The 45th Session of the Indian Labour Conference concluded in New Delhi on 18 May 2013 with a resolve to provide universal social security coverage and assured pension to the entire working population.The conference was a two-day affair. During the course of Conference the Labour Ministers of State Governments, Central Trade Union Leaders, Employers representatives, and Officials of the central and state governments also


deliberated on service conditions, wages and social security for various categories of workers employed in different Central and State Government schemes.

Indian Women's Compound Team won Bronze in Archery

Indian womens compound team which comprised Gagandeep Kaur, Trisha Deb, and P Lily Chanu, won Bronze medal on 18 May 2013 at Shanghai. This is Indias first ever world medal in archery. The Indian trio, defeated Italy which included Katia D'Agostino, Laura Longo and Marcella Tonioli in the bronze medal play-off in the World Cup archery Stage I by 228-223. India was ahead by two points after the first end, four at the halfway mark and three points after the third end. Shooting first in the last end, Italy landed two 8s, whereas India finished the match with 8-9-10-10-10-10 for a well-deserved victory. In 2012 at Shanghai, Italy had triumphed over an inexperienced Indian trio of Parveena, Gagandeep Kaur, and V. Jyothi Surekha, by 230-217.

USA (United States of America) cleared Shale Gas Export to India

USA on 18 May 2013 granted conditional authorization to export domestically produced liquefied natural gas (LNG) to countries that do not have Free Trade Agreement (FTA) with it. It opens up the prospects of export of shale gas to India. The decision was announced by Department of Energy in USA. The gas will be exported from Freeport Terminal on Quintana Island in Texas. The companies from nations like Japan, China and Britain have huge stake in the Texas company, Indian chances to benefit immediately from this grant of license are rare. India does not have a free trade agreement with the USA. But Indian companies can seek similar licences for import of the shale gas from the U.S. in large quantities from other terminals. The present federal law generally requires approval of natural gas exports to nations that have an FTA with the U.S. But those nations that do not have an FTA with the U.S., the Natural Gas Act directs the Department of Energy to grant export authorisations provided that the proposed exports will not harm the public interest.

CLTA signed a Deal with its Spanish Counterpart MTF

Chandigarh Lawn Tennis Association (CLTA) on 18 May 2013 signed a deal with its Spanish counterpart, Madrid Tennis Foundation (MTF) with the objective of improving the quality of the sport in the region. The deal was signed for the next three years. Under the protocol, the training and coaching systems of CLTA will improve a lot. Top tennis coaches from Spain will visit CLTA regularly to upgrade the training facilities, help the coaches and teach latest skills to trainees. CLTA also has rural scheme CHART apart from Centre of Excellence.

Kerala and Himachal Pradesh announced Cooperation in Rural Development

Kerala and Himachal Pradesh on 18 May 2013 announced that they would share information about feasible models and best practices to strengthen implementation of their rural development projects. Kerala's Panchayats and Social Welfare Ministry shared details about local self governance in the state, community farming and the Kudumbashree programme with Himachal Pradesh. A larger ministerial team from Himachal is likely to visit Kerala to assess the progress made in the state in the sector of social security. A delegation from Kerala will pay a visit to Himachal Pradesh to study development projects for tribal communities there and to replicate that in their state.

Investigation Team to Seek SC's Guidance on Kodnani Death Penalty Issue

The Special Investigation team in the third week of May 2013 decided to seek the Supreme Court's guidance on Kodnani death penalty issue in Gujarat. The decision comes after the reported U-turn by the Gujarat Government on the death penalty for former minister Maya Kodnani and nine others, convicted in 2002 Naroda Patiya riot case in which 96 people were killed. The team will file an application before the special bench of the Supreme Court apprising it about the recent Gujarat Government's decision to withdraw the sanction for filing appeal in the Naroda Patiya case. Maya Kodnani was a Member of Legislative assembly from Naroda constituency in Gujarat for its 12th legislative assembly and a former Minister for Women and Child Development of Gujarat. She is the first female and first MLA to be convicted in a post-Godhra riots case. Godhra riots took place in 2002.


Scientists from Switzerland created World's Smallest Droplets

Scientists from Switzerland created the smallest drops of liquid ever made in the lab. Scientists carried out a series of experiments at the Large Hadron Collider, the world's largest and most powerful particle collider located at the European Laboratory for Nuclear and Particle Physics (CERN) in Switzerland. Evidence of the tiny droplets was obtained following the collision of protons with lead ions at velocities approaching the speed of light. These short-lived droplets are the size of three to five protons-that is about one-100000th the size of a hydrogen atom or one-100000000th the size of a virus according to scientific calculation. These small droplets flow in a same manner as quarkgluon plasma does. It can be defined as a state of matter that is a mixture of the sub-atomic particles that constitutes protons and neutrons and only found at extreme temperatures and densities. Scientists proposed that the whole universe once consisted of this strongly interacting elixir for fractions of a second after the Big Bang when conditions were dramatically hotter and denser than todays conditions. Since then the universe has spent billions of years expanding and cooling, the only way scientists can reproduce this primeval plasma is to bang atomic nuclei together with a very large amount of energy.

Anshu Jamshenpa scaled the Mount Everest for the Third Time
Anshu Jamshenpa of Arunachal Pradesh scaled the Mount Everest on 18 May 2013 for the third time. She holds the record of being the only mother in the world to scale the peak twice in 10 days. She was among the six mountaineers from the north-east to make it to the summit. Among the six were David Zohmangaiha of Mizoram, Tarun Saikia of Assam and Wangsuk Myrthong of Meghalaya, who became the first mountaineers from their States to have successfully scaled the Mount Everest. Other members of the team were Kazi Sherpa of Sikkim and Nameirakpam Chingkheinganba of Manipur. Assam Chief Minister Tarun Gogoi announced a financial assistance of 20 lakh rupees to Saikia for his achievement.

Civil Aviation Ministry directed Airlines to Limit Number of Privileged Seats

The Union Ministry of Civil Aviation on 17 May 2013 asked all airlines to limit the number of privileged seats for which they can charge the fee, as few carriers impose price tags on a large number of these seats. The Aviation Ministry has also asked the airlines to identify the rows of seats to be charged. However, no upper limit is set on the number of privileged seats or was any time limit fixed for the airlines to take a decision on the issue. The deadline for reduction of the number of foreign pilots to zero was also extended by three years till 2016. The Civil Aviation Ministry also directed the airlines to reduce the number of expatriates in their ranks and to recruit more Indians, who hold the Commercial Pilot License, even as trainees. The deadline for both the things was earlier set till 2013 and in a period of two years from 2010 to 2012, the number of expatriate pilot came down from 854 to 324.

20-MAY-2013 Samina Baig Became the First Pakistani Woman to Scale Mount Everest
Samina Baig on 19 May 2013 became the first Pakistani woman to scale Mount Everest. She did this along with Nunshi and Tashi Malik, the first Indian twin sisters to scale the Everest. After reaching to the top of Everest, all three women hoisted Indian and Pakistani flags along side, depicting a message of collaborative action, friendship and peace. The Nepal Mountaineering Department officials confirmed the feat, while at the same time, also explaining that 35 foreigners along with 29 Nepalese Sherpa guides scaled the Everest after climbing from highest camp on South Col, which is the pass between Mt. Everest and another neighbouring mountain. About Samina Baig Samina Baig is 22 years of age. She is a Shimshal village native. Shimshal village is situated in Karakorum Range in Upper Hunza. While scaling Mount Everest, she was accompanied by guide and brother Mirza Ali (29). The attempt was made to complete the summit without the use of supplementary oxygen. She is an Arts student and began climbing at the age of 4 years.


Overall, she is the third Pakistani to reach atop Mount Everest, second one being her own brother Mirza Ali. First Pakistani to climb Mount Everest was Nazir Sabir on 17 May 2000. Mount Everest is highest mountain of the world with peak at 8848 metres or 29029 ft above the sea level.

Nunshi and Tashi Malik Became First Twins to Scale Mount Everest
Nunshi and Tashi Malik, two 21-year old Indians from Dehrahdun became first twins to scale Mount Everest on 19 May 2013. They were among 135 other people, who reached the top of the Mount Everest, which is the highest mountain of the world at 8848 meter above sea level. It is interesting to note that these twins reached the top of Mount Everest with two sherpas, who were also twins. Both these twin sisters were staying on mountains in that region in order to get acquainted with the atmosphere. Along with them, 11-member joint Indian and Nepal army expedition reached that summit too. In 2012, 62 Indians had attempted to scale Mount Everest, with 45 being successful.

Australian Actress Penne Hackforth-Jones died at 64

Penne Hackforth-Jones, one of Australia's most recognisable actors died at the age of 64 after battling lung cancer. Born in 1949 in the US state of Connecticut, she was brought up in Australia. Her first credited role was in the 1969 TV series Riptide. Hackforth-Jones appeared in many wellknown Australian television series, including A Country Practice, All Saints and Mother and Son. She also featured in a number of movies, including Mao's Last Dancer in 2009 and Muriel's Wedding in 1994. Her last appearance was in The Doctor Blake Mysteries.

Rafael Nadal beat Roger Federar to win Italian Open 2013

Rafael Nadal beat Roger Federar in the final match played on 19 May 2013 to lift his seventh Italian Open title. He defeated Federar in straight sets 6-1, 6-3. The match was played on clay court. This was Nadals 20th victory against Federar. He has lost only 10 matches to Federar so far. It was Nadals fifth title since returning earlier this year from a seven-month layoff due to a left knee injury. Nadal collected 400 points from this victory which carried him into fourth position on the rankings ladder.

North Korea Test Fired Four Missiles Off Coast in Two Days
North Korea on 19 May 2013 test-fired a short-range missile off its east coast, counted as fourth test firing in two days. The missile was fired into the Sea of Japan. Earlier on 18 May 2013 the North Korea fired three short-range missiles off its east coast, considered as part of a military drill. The launching of missile by North Korea is not usual but it came at a time of sensitive alert on the peninsula followed by the Pyongyangs nuclear test in February 2013 which had led to tougher UN Sanctions. The launch of missile by North Korea was to demonstrate its military ambitions in rebelliousness of international sanctions and diplomatic efforts to convince the totalitarian state to return to talks. The United States, Russia and the United Nations have all issued renewed calls for restraint from North Korea. Followed the firing of three short-range projectiles, South Korea urged the North to stop provocations.

India Asked for more Market Access from Japan during the Visit of Anand Sharma
The Union Minister of Commerce and Industry, Anand Sharma during his two day visit to Japan from 17 to 18 May 2013 sought more market access for Indian exporters in sectors like agriculture, marine and pharmaceutical products in Japan. During his visit to Japan, Anand Sharma expressed concern towards the mounting trade deficit, with Japanese Prime Minister Shinzo Abe and Foreign Minister Fumio Kishida in Tokyo. It is projected that the Japanese pharmaceutical market will touch 100 billion US dollar and in providing affordable healthcare, the Indian generics can play a key role in providing affordable healthcare. In 2012-13 trade deficit of India with Japan measured to 6 billion dollar. The two day visit is targeted towards a comprehensive review of the bilateral economic engage-


ment with Japan. Anand Sharma apprised Shinzo Abe about the successful implementation of the Delhi Mumbai Industrial Corridor (DMIC) project, which was conceptualized during his visit of to India in 2007. During his meet with the Foreign Minister Fumio Kishida expressed satisfaction on the healthy growth of trade after the signing of Comprehensive Economic Partnership Agreement (CEPA) between the two countries

ADB provided 110-m Dollars loan for Urban Services in Jammu &Kashmir
The Asian Development Bank (ADB) in Month of May 2013 has provided a 110-million Dollars loan to Jammu and Kashmir in order to help in improving urban services, including water supply. As per Asian Development bank, more than two million people in the two cities are supposed to be benefitted from improved access to water supply, functional drainage systems and better road facilities. The second portion of the loan under the Jammu and Kashmir Urban Sector Development Investment Programme will help develop infrastructure for solid waste management, drainage and transport in Jammu and Srinagar. Some Points to Remember The Centre will provide counterpart funds of 71 million Dollars for a total project investment cost of 181 million under this tranche. The ADB loan has a 25-year term including a grace period of five years. The project will support the State to increase average water supply in Jammu from 90 litres per day per capita to 135 litres per day per capita through rehabilitation and improvement of infrastructure. It will also support to reduce inner city traffic congestions, resulting in positive economic impacts.

Cluster of Hydrogen Clouds Discovered Between Two nearest Galaxies

Astronomers at the National Radio Astronomy Observatory discovered a cluster of hydrogen clouds between our two nearby galaxies- Triangulum (M33) and Andromeda (M31). The cluster of these clouds was never seen before. The researchers contemplated that these were the rare blobs of gas condensed from gigantic and undetected pool of ionized and hot gas. These objects were detected by the astronomers by making use of National Science Foundation's Green Bank Telescope (GBT) at the National Radio Astronomy Observatory (NRAO) in Green Bank. Spencer Wolfe of West Virginia University in Morgantown explained that when the area between M31 and M33 was observed, presence of neutral and colder hydrogen was detected but the astronomers were not able to find out if this hydrogen had any definitive structure or not. But with the help of high resolution images sent by GBT, the astronomers were able to see distinct concentrations of neutral hydrogen which emerged from featureless field of gas. The astronomers were able to see neutral atomic hydrogen, also referred to as HI (H and the Roman numeral one). This is because of the unique signal that it emits at the radio wavelengths that can be detected on our planet by the radio telescopes. It is interesting to notice that this material is found abundantly throughout the universe, but in space between the galaxies, it is very shaky. Also, between the two signals, it sends very faint signals which are very difficult to catch. Astronomers explained that more than 10 years ago, they had hint about unrecognized abundance of hydrogen lying between M31 and M33. But because of very faint signal from the gas, no firm conclusions about the origin, nature or its existence could be made. But in 2012, data from GBT confirmed the presence of hydrogen gas between the nearest galaxies. Thorough studies of the data from GBT revealed that presence of hydrogen gas was not there in the form of just streamers but a complete 50 percent of hydrogen was clustered into discrete and self-gravitating blobs. These blobs could also hint towards dwarf galaxies, which, as the name says, are small collection of stars tied together by gravitational pull. These dwarf galaxies contain a few thousands to few million stars. Interestingly, GBT also tracked motion of the newly discovered clouds of hydrogen, depicting that these were travelling across the space at velocities which were like M31 and M33. Felix J. Lockman, the astronomer from NRAO in Green Bank explained that the clouds had their own identities and that they were not suburbs of either of the two galaxies. The reason why GBT could detect the signal from the gas is because of it huge size, exceptional design and location at National Radio Quiet Zone of West Virginia. Otherwise, radio telescopes could not catch these faint signals. National Radio Astronomy Observatory is the facility of National Science Foundation which is operated under the cooperative agreement by Associated Universities.


The Law on Elimination of Violence against Women blocked in Afghanistan

Afghanistan Parliament on 19 May 2013 blocked law aimed at strengthening provisions for women's freedom. The Parliament argued that parts of the law violated Islamic principles and encouraged disobedience. In fact, the Law on Elimination of Violence against women is in force since 2009, but only by Presidential decree. The law was now presented in the parliament to get its approval so that in future no president could repeal it to satisfy the wishes of orthodox religious parties. The Features of Law The law criminalizes child marriage and forced marriage. It bans baad, the traditional practice of selling and buying women to settle disputes. It also makes domestic violence a crime punishable by up to three years and specifies that rape victims should not face criminal charges for fornication or adultery. The Taliban while in power imposed a strict interpretation of Islam that put severe restrictions on the freedom of women. Taliban even banned women from working and going to school, or even leaving home without a male relative. In public, all women were forced wear a head-to-toe burqa, which even covered the face. Violators faced public flogging or execution. Since the U.S.-led invasion in 2001, women's freedoms have shown improvement, but Afghanistan still exhibits conservative culture, mainly in rural areas. As per the UN analysis in late 2011, only a small percentage of reported crimes against women were taken into consideration by the Afghan government. Between March 2010 and March 2011 only 7 percent of the total number of crimes reported.

Opportunity Rover of NASA Broke the 40-Year-Old Extraterrestrial Distance Record

The Opportunity rover of NASA broke the 40-year-old extraterrestrial distance record on 16 May 2013, after 9 long years of Mars exploration. The six-wheeled robot, Opportunity created record by travelling a total distance of 35.760 kilometres ever since it landed on Mars in 2004. The team that operates Opportunity received a confirmation in transmission from the Red Planet that opportunity drove 80 metres on 16 May 2013, thus bringing its overall odometry to 35.760 km since its landing on Mars. When the astronauts of Apollo 17, Harrison Schmitt and Eugene Cernan visited the Moon for three days in 1972, they drove the roving vehicle for 35.744 km or 19.3 nautical miles. Since then, this was the farthest overall distance travelled by any NASA vehicle that drove on world apart from Earth. At present, the international record of extraterrestrial distance is held by remote-controlled Lunokhod 2 rover of Soviet Union that travelled 37 km on Moon in 1973.

Work on World's Biggest Hydroelectric Inga Dam on Congo River to Start in 2015
The Democratic Republic of Congo (DRC) on 19 May 2013 declared that it will start the work on worlds biggest hydroelectric Inga dam on Congo River in October 2015. DRC made the announcement on the construction of the dam in Paris after the talks between the DRC and International officials ended. The meet on the development of the dam involved multilateral lending institutions. The planned Inga dam Project will produce 40000 megawatts power and provide electricity to half the African Continent. Whereas, the World Bank has estimated that DR Congos total hydropower resources can generate up to 100000 megawatts. As per the World Bank estimates if the project is completed at full its capacity than it will be capable of providing power to about 500 million African households. During the first phase the Inga 3 Basse Chute project will have a capacity of 4800 megawatts. The Paris meet of the DR Congo and the International officials followed the deal signed on 7 May 2013 between South Africa and DR Congo for cooperation in the energy sector. As per the 7 May 2013 deal, South Africa will buy some of the electricity produced by the project The project will be developed on the powerful Inga Falls that lie is a narrow strip of DR Congo Territory, through which the Congo river runs down to the Atlantic Coast. At present, Three Gorges Dam on the Yangtze River of China is the world's largest hydropower complex, with a capacity of 22500 megawatts.

Two Andhra Pradesh Ministers Charged in Jaganmohan Reddy Case Resigned

Andhra Pradesh Home Minister P Sabita Reddy and Roads and Buildings Minister D Prasada Rao


resigned on 19 May 2013 from their office after the two were accused in disproportionate assets case that involved Kadapa MP YS Jaganmohan Reddy. P Sabita Reddy has been named as an accused in the illegal allocation of mines to certain cement companies, while handling the profile of Minister of Mines in the state. Prasada Rao has been accused in the CBI chargesheet in the Vanpic Land Allotment Scandal, when he was the Revenue Minister in the YS Rajasekhara Reddy led Government. The two ministers submitted their resignation to the Chief Minister of Andhra Pradesh, N Kiran Kumar Reddy. Their resignations will be forwarded to the Governor ESL Narasimhan for approval by the Chief Minister.

Laxman Singh Rathore Elected as the Member of Executive Council of WMO

Laxman Singh Rathore, the Director General of Meteorology & Permanent Representative of India with World Meteorological Organization (WMO) was elected as the Member of Executive Council of WMO during the 65th Executive Council of WMO meeting which is ongoing at Geneva. He had served a term as the Vice President of Commission of Agriculture Meteorology of WMO and was also elected to serve the Executive Council in an individual capacity. The council includes 37 Heads/directors/Director Generals of National Meteorological Services and also the President and three Vice-Presidents who are elected by Congress. Apart from this, the presidents of the six regional associations are also a part of this council. What is the Executive Council of WMO? The Executive Council of WMO is an executive body of this organisation. The council meets yearly to implement the decisions of Congress, coordinate the programmes, examine the utilization of budgetary resources, consider and take action on recommendations of Regional Associations and Technical Commissions and guide their work programme, provide technical information, counsel and assistance in the fields of activity of the Organization and study and take actions on matters affecting international meteorology and related activities.

Serena Williams defeated Victoria Azarenka to win Italian Open

Serena Williams on 19 May 2013 won her fourth consecutive tennis title after thrashing out the former world number one Victoria Azarenka 6-1 6-3 to take the Italian Open on the Rome Clay. This is the second Rome Open title won by Serena, before this Serena won the Rome title 11 years ago in 2002. The world number one Serena Williams has not lost a single match since the Belarusian Azarenka defeated her in the Doha Final in February 2013. Before the Italy Open in 2013, Serena Williams won Miami, Charleston and Madrid Open. To win the 51st Career Title, Serena Williams broke serve of Azarenka three times in a onesided first set and with this win, she also secured her career-best winning streak of 24 games.

SC:Two-finger Test on a Rape Victim violates her Right to Privacy

The Supreme Court of India on 19 May 2013 held that the two-finger test on a rape victim violates her right to privacy. It also directed the government to provide better medical procedures to confirm sexual assault. A bench of Justices BSChauhan and FMI Kalifulla gave the ruling. The court stated that even if the report of the two-finger test is affirmative, the consent on part of a rape victim cannot be proved. The court held that rape survivors are entitled to legal recourse that does not violate their physical or mental integrity and dignity. Medical procedures should not be conducted in a way that includes inhuman or degrading treatment and health should be given topmost consideration while dealing with gender-based violence. The State is responsible to make such services available to survivors of sexual violence. The Supreme Court gave this ruling keeping in mind the International Covenant on Economic, Social, and Cultural Rights 1966 and the UN Declaration of Basic Principles of Justice for Victims of Crime and Abuse of Power 1985.

Israel became the worlds largest Exporter of Unmanned Aerial Vehicles (UAVs)
As per the study by a business consulting firm, Israel became the worlds largest exporter of unmanned aerial vehicles (UAVs) in terms of number of systems sold. The Country has earned an enormous 4.6 billion dollars in sales during the last eight years, excluding a major deal with India for the upgrade of unmanned aircrafts, Frost & Sullivan. It was noted that the sales of UAVs, or drones, constitute nearly 10 per cent of Israels total military exports. Unmanned equipment exports are a relatively volatile market. Points to Remember


Israel had 150 million dollars in UAV exports in 2008, which was increased significantly in 2009 to 650 million dollars. Exports of the small surveillance planes peaked in 2010, a record year for drone sales, to 979 million dollars. The sales since then have been dropped with UAV exports in 2011 slumping to 627 million dollars and in 2012 further to 260 million dollars. Israels average overall military exports over the past eight years have been about 6.1 billion dollars a year. The United States accounted for a mere 3.9 per cent of Israels UAV export sales from 2005 to 2012. It is because of the Israel Air Forces impressive squadrons of UAVs that Israel is considered as a powerhouse in the field of unmanned aircraft. This fleet includes Eitan, which boasts a wingspan of up to 26 meters, and the Hermes 450, which as per the foreign reports can be armed to carry out targeted killings from the air.

Scientists Discovered a New Less Expensive Technique of Creating 3D Images

Scientists at University of Glasgow's School of Physics and Astronomy discovered a new less expensive technique of creating 3D images. They created a system which makes use of the detectors that have single pixel for sensing the light instead of various pixels used in imaging sensors found in digital cameras. The detectors have the capability of judging the frequencies beyond visible light, which in turn would help in various new applications for 3D imaging in geography and medicine. The scientists explained that the single pixel detectors will cost just a few pounds in comparison to present systems which amount to thousands of pounds. The scientists believe that the ability of this system to sense the wavelengths beyond digital cameras capabilities, as well as its low cost would result in making it a valuable tool for various industries. Possible applications include use in medical industry for finding tumours. Prof Miles Padgett, the lead researcher of the team at University of Glasgow's School of Physics and Astronomy explained that single pixel detectors in four locations can be used for detecting the light from data projector, which elucidates objects with the sequence of black-and-white patterns. 3D images were created with the combination of images from four detectors while making use of a technique known as shape from shade. The 3D computational imaging, also known as ghost imaging produces the detailed images of the objects in merely a few seconds. Conventional 3D imaging systems make use of multiple digital camera sensors for producing 3D image from 2D information. However, there is a need of careful calibration for making sure that multi-megapixel images align properly. The digital camera sensors have restricted sensitivity beyond spectrum of light, where single pixel detector can be used for capturing information beyond visible reaching wavelengths from the X-ray to TeraHertz.

Mumbai Recorded 44 percent Rise in Abortion Cases in 2012

A data released by the Brihanmumbai Municipal Corporation (BMC) reported that Mumbai witnessed a rise of 44 percent in the number of abortions in the year 2012 with 28455 abortions. The released data was a compilation of data received by various private and public hospitals and nursing homes in 2012. In 2011, Mumbai witnessed 19701 cases of registered abortions in the year. Bhandup that recorded 2603 cases in 2012 and turned up to be the abortion capital of the year. Bhandup was followed by Chembur with 2509 abortions and Andheri East that reported 2489 cases of abortion cases. As per the experts, the abortions couldnt be linked with the sex-determination tests as maximum of the abortions took place in first trimester, the period when it is not possible to detect the sex of the fetus. The sudden increase in the number is the reason of the better reporting of data by hospitals that is also supported due to computerization. The report is being considered as an accurate one because of the stringent follow-up of the Pre-Conception and Pre-Natal Diagnostic Techniques (PCPNDT) Law.

Indonesian Men and Australian Women won Thanthi TV-Asia Pacific Championship
The mens and womens finals of the Thanthi TV-Asia Pacific under-21 beach volleyball cham-


pionship were won by Indonesia and Australia respectively. The final matches were played on 19 May 2013 at Marina beach in Chennai. In women category, The Australian pair of Mariafe Artacho and Jessyka Ngauamo defeated Japans Chiyo Suzuki and Satono Ishitsubo 21-11, 21-12. Mariafe and Jessykas all-round performance enabled an easy victory for Australia. The pair was exceptional and brilliant with smashes and blocks. The Australian pair didnt have any trouble in both sets. Japanese women were not upto the mark. They made far too many errors at the net. They seemed unable to give their best. In the mens final, Indonesias Mohammad Ashfiya and Rendy Verdan beat Vladislav Pustynnikov and Sergey Bogatu of Kazakhstan 21-16, 19-21, 15-10. Although Kazakhstan players were playing together for the last five years at the International level, Indonesians played very aggressively against them. India lost in the quarterfinals but three teams managed a berth for the World u-21 championship to be held in Umag, Croatia from June 20 to 23. India-1 (Rajkumar & Yogaraj) & India-2 (Shankar & Mahesh Kumar) in men, and the womens India-1 (R. Deepika & S. Eshwari) team made the grade. The top six teams in men and women will go to Croatia.

Demand for Gold in India Increased by 27 Percent during Jan-Mar 2013

Demand for gold in India increased by 27 per cent to 256.5 tonnes during the January-March 2013 quarter, while its imports declined by 5.7 per cent to 215 tonnes, as per the data released by World Gold Council (WGC) on 16 May 2013. In terms of value, Indias gold demand increased by 32 per cent to 72899.4 crore rupees in January-March 2013 from 55148.7 crore rupees in the corresponding period of 2012. The demand for the gold was registered at 202.1 tonnes in January-March 2012 and imports at 228 tonnes. The jewellery demand increased by 15 per cent to 159.5 tonnes from 138.3 tonnes, while investment demand increased by 52 per cent to 97 tonnes from 63.8 tonnes in the review period. The demand for gold would remain strong because of lower prices and higher buying in the wedding and festive season. An expected rise in rural income due to good monsoon projected this year can also contribute to the demand. At the world level, gold demand decreased by 13 per cent to 963 tonnes in the first quarter of 2013 as strong demand for gold jewellery, bars and coins was exceeded by significant total outflows from gold exchange traded funds (ETFs).

Russian Capsule Bion-M returned after a month-long Space Tour with Mice, Newts
A Russian Capsule Bion-M craft that was filled with 45 mice and 15 newts along with other animals returned from a months long mission in Orbit on 19 May 2013. The data received on the return of the orbit mission may pave a way ahead for the scientists for a manned flight to Mars. The study was aimed at determining the way bodies adapted the weightlessness so that the living creatures can survive the extended flights. Other animals those were sent in the capsule were lizards, snails, small crayfish & fish and gerbils as well as plants and microflora. Less than half of the 45 mice and other animals sent on the mission survived the flight. The capsule was launched on 19 April 2013 from the Baikonur Cosmodrome. Earlier, research craft that carried animals into the space spent 12 days in orbit in 2007. Bion-M craft landed in the Orenburg Region about 1,200 kilometres south-east of Moscow with the help of a special parachute system

Indias Investments in Sri Lanka reach 1 billion dollars mark

As per the Indian envoy to Colombo Ashok K Kantha Indian companies have invested nearly 1 billion dollars in Sri Lanka since 2003. The figure is supposed to rise above 2 billion dollars in the next five years. It is important here to note that with investment inflows of 160 million Dollars in 2012, nearly 2 billion Dollars worth of FDI had been committed by Indian companies for the next five years or so. Some Points to be Known In 2011-12, Indias imports from Sri Lanka went up by almost 45 per cent to cross 720 million dollars, making Sri Lanka the largest source of merchandise from the South Asian region for India. It was a big jump from the 45 million dollars imports in 2000-01, when Sri Lanka occupied 4th rank as an import source for India in the region. Sri Lankas exports to India had multiplied by over 16 times in this period, while Indias ex-


ports to Sri Lanka had gone up by less than 7 times. Basically the FTA had brought significant benefits to both sides, but more to Sri Lanka. In Last few years a number of top Indian companies had displayed high interest in Sri Lanka, investing in the country across sectors such as infrastructure, manufacturing, services, and construction.

Recent Slump in Global Warming Would Lead to Lower Rise in Temperatures: Research
Researchers in the month of May 2013 found that recent slump in global warming would lead to lower rise in temperatures in short-term. Since the year 1998, there has remained unexplained stagnation in heating of the atmosphere of Earth. The researchers explained that this will bring down the rate of predicted global warming in coming decades. However, in the long term, the expected rise in the temperatures will not change much. Slowdown in expected global warming rate has remained a subject of study for quite some time now. Earlier in 2013, the UK Met Office also brought down the five-year temperature forecast. The new research depicts a clear picture of how a slowdown can affect the temperatures in short term and long term. A collective team of international researchers studied how previous 10 years would affect long term balance of the climate sensitivity as well as short term climate response. Climate sensitivity studies the impact of doubled concentrations of carbon dioxide in atmosphere. On the other hand, climate response is the short term calculation that is also based on doubled carbon dioxide. The Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change (IPCC) in the year 2007 observed that short term rise in temperature would be around 1-3C (1.8-5.4F). But in the new analysis, the estimated range would be 0.9-2.0C. The authors of the story found out that over a period of a few coming decades, the global average temperatures of Earth would warm by around 20 percent slower than forecasted. However, when the long term picture is kept in mind, the work remains consistent with the previous forecasts. IPCC revealed that climate sensitivity remained at the range of 2.0-4.5C. The researchers explained that difference between lower short-term estimates as well as consistent long-term picture remains on the fact that heat from previous 10 years was absorbed into and stored in oceans of the world.

Indian National Defence University to be set up in Gurgaon

Indian National Defence University, a dedicated first-of-its-kind institution for training and research in military studies will be set up in Gurgaon on 23 May 2013. The sprawling 200 acre campus will be set up in Binola village with an estimated cost of 300 crore rupees. The proposed institute will be equipped with training and research facilities on all aspects of national security as part of the strategic national policy-making. While one-third of its strength will comprise of civilian students, the remaining seats will be reserved for in-service defence personnel.

Mars Rover Studied about Rock Esperance Weathered by Water

Mars Rover, Opportunity of NASA in the third week of May 2013 completed examining the fractured rocks on Mars, the red planet those were altered by water. The rover was searching for the evidences of the wet ancient environment that possibly favoured the life of the planet Now the Opportunity has been driven towards a new study area after finishing 20 months on the dubbed Cape York location. The scientists from NASA gave several weeks to study and get the measurement of the fractured rock named Esperance, which was important for them from many aspects. Esperance was spotted by the team of NASA, while exploring a portion of Cape York, where the Compact Reconnaissance Spectrometer for Mars on NASAs Mars Reconnaissance Orbiter detected the clay mineral. After studying the area, the rover team found an outcrop called Whitewater Lake that has a small amount of clay altered due to its exposure to clay.

Union Government proposed Stronger Powers to SEBI for tackling Ponzi Schemes
The Union Government in Month of May 2013 has proposed Stronger Powers to (Securities and Exchange Board of India) SEBI enabling it to carry out search and seizure operations and for attachment of assets.


With this a Special power has also been proposed to SEBI with which it can seek information on telephone call data records, from any persons or entities in respect to any securities transaction being examined by it. It is worth mentioning here that Proposals to make required amendments in the SEBI Act and other relevant regulations have been finalised after detailed consultations with the market regulator and are being presented before the Union Cabinet for its approval. A Cabinet note in this regard has also been circulated by the Department of Economic Affairs to other departments in the Finance Ministry, as also to the Corporate Affairs, Home, Law and Telecom ministries, Reserve Bank of India, Planning Commission and Prime Ministers Office for their comments and feedback on the proposals. The Government is planning to introduce the Securities Laws (Amendment) Bill, 2013 in Parliament to carry out the proposed changes for grant of stronger powers to SEBI. The Government has come up with the decision of accepting most of the proposals made by SEBI in this regard and the amendments would be carried out after the Cabinet approves them and the required amendment Bill is passed by Parliament. What is Ponzi Schemes? A Ponzi scheme is basically a fraudulent investment operation that pays returns to its investors from their own money or the money paid by following investors, rather than from profit earned by the individual or organization running the operation. The Ponzi scheme generally tempts new investors by offering higher returns than other investments, in the form of short-term returns that are either abnormally high or unusually consistent.

Bhupati and Bopanna lost to Mike and Bob Bryan at the Rome Masters
Mahesh Bhupati and Rohan Bopanna lost in final to top seeded American team of Mike and Bob Bryan on 19 May 2013 at the Rome Masters. They lost the match in straight sets. With their runners-up finish, Bhupathi and Bopanna split 76060 euros as prize money and earned 600 ranking points each.The sixth seeded Indian combination lost 2-6 3-6 in the summit clash of the clay court event. Such was the domination of the veteran American pair that Indians could not earn even a single break chance. The Indians lost their serve twice in the opening set and once in the second. Bhupathi and Bopanna were playing their second final of the season and first together. Bhupathi had won the Dubai event with Michael Llodra while Bopanna had triumphed at Marseille, France with Colin Fleming.

Morgan Stanley to sell its Wealth Management Unit to Standard Chartered

Morgan Stanley on 20 May 2013 signed an agreement to sell its Indian wealth management unit to Standard Chartered. Financial terms of the deal were not disclosed. The sale of the unit underscores a growing trend of consolidation in Asia's wealth management industry as private banks struggle to earn profits in the face of rising regulatory costs and waferthin advisory fees. Morgan Stanley is an American multinational financial services corporation. It is headquartered in the Morgan Stanley Building, Midtown Manhattan, New York City.

21-MAY-2013 Dolphins and Wild Elephants among Top 100 Mammals Facing Extinction Threat: ZSL
The Zoological Society of London in the month of May 2013 revealed that Indian dolphins as well as the wild elephants were among recent top 100 mammals facing the risks of extinction. The Zoological Society of London (ZSL) scored mammals of the world for the first time on the basis of how Evolutionarily Distinct and Globally Endangered (EDGE) they were. In the list which included most extraordinary threatened species, were frogs which gave birth via skin as well as the mammals which were immune to cyanide. A lot of these mammals in the list are not known to people and therefore also do not receive the attention from conservation point of view. The latest entries in this list are the two mammals from India as well. Status of Wild Elephants in the List of Top 100 Endangered Mammals The latest list of the endangered mammals rang an alarming bell, especially for the largest land mammal of Asia, the wild elephant, which ranked 17th on ZSL list. ZSL revealed that merely 35000 to 50000 Asian elephants were there in the wild in the year 1995. Since that time, the population of the wild elephants has dwindled a lot of times and it is believed that the present population would have diminished even below this estimate.


Majority of the elephants are found in India (20000-25000) and Myanmar (5000-6000). In Vietnam, a little less than 200 elephants are surviving. The major factor of diminishing population of Asian elephants is habitat loss. Also, these elephants are constantly coming in contact with the local people and the farmers because of the destruction of their feeding grounds. As a result, these elephants destroy properties, raid the crops and even kill people. Farmers and local people even the score by killing these elephants, which result in a decline in their population. Other reason for decline in the population of Asiatic elephants is poaching for their ivory as well as occasionally for meat. Status of River Dolphin in the List of Top 100 Endangered Mammals River dolphin ranked 60th in the list of top 100 endangered mammals of the world. In India, in the river basins, these dolphins are found primarily in plains that have rivers with slow flow. At present, dolphins are found in Ganges-Brahmaputra-Meghna and Karnaphuli-Sangu river systems of Bangladesh as well as India. ZSL surveyed parts of range of Ganges subspecies and found that they accounted for 1200 to 1800 in number. The reason for dwindling population of dolphins, according to ZSL is that their habitat is one among the most densely populated areas of the world. Therefore, they are threatened because of damming of the rivers for electricity generation as well as irrigation. This leads to degradation of the habitat, prevention of seasonal migration and isolation of the population. In the Ganges-Brahmaputra-Megna river systems alone, over 18 high dams and 20 barrages have been built since 1956. ZSL explained that a lot of decline in dolphin population could be seen because more dams and barrages are planned or under construction in the range of this species. Professor Jonathan Baillie of ZSL explained that results of mapping exercise were alarming because at present, merely 5 percent of EDGE mammals identified areas and 15 percent of EDGE amphibian identified areas were protected.

MoU Signed between India and United Kingdom on Cooperation in Health sector
An MoU was signed between Union Minister of Health & Family Welfare India, Ghulam Nabi Azad and Secretary of State for Health, UK, Jeremy Richard Hunt on cooperation in the field of health sector on 19 May 2013 at Geneva between the Government of India and the Government of the United Kingdom. The aim of the agreement is promotion of wide-ranging cooperation in the health sector between the two countries. The main areas identified for cooperation in the MOU include: Promoting exchange on healthcare policy in India and the UK; Human resources for Health; Regulatory issues; Health technology development: Primary healthcare; Strengthening of public infrastructure and capacity; Health security, including cooperation on infectious diseases, emerging infections and drug resistance. India, at present, is the strategic partner to the UK and has been a recipient of UKs bilateral assistance in the form of grants since 1975. The aid agency of the UK is Department for International Development (DFID). The priority for DFID and Government of India partnership is improvement of maternal & child health and reducing the burden of communicable diseases.

Indian Boxers won 2013 International Limassol Cup held in Cyprus

Indian boxers won the 2013 Invitational FXTM International Limassol Boxing Cup held in Limassol, Cyprus on 19 May 2013. They won 10 medals which included four gold medals, three silver medals and three bronze medals which ensured them the first rank. Indian boxers won the tournament on the European circuit for the first time. Indian boxers performed in the following way: Reigning national champion Madan Lal (52kg) beat Ayigah Dodsi from Belgium to bag the flyweight title. Gold medallist at the 2009 Youth Olympic Games V Durga Rao (56kg) beat German Dieter Dier to bag his very first international medal on the senior tour. Mandeep Jangra (69kg) beat Victor Vega Blanco of Spain in a completely one sided affair to bag the welterweight title.


Super heavyweight boxer Praveen Kumar (+91kg) won the fourth gold for Indiabeating Beguerni Hamza from Algeria. Manoj Kumar (64kg), Olympian Dinesh Kumar (91kg) and Sukhdeep Singh (75kg) won a silver medeal each. Earlier in the tournament, Anil Kumar (60kg), Jagroop Singh (81kg) and L Devendro Singh (49kg) reached the semi-finals and claimed a bronze medal each.

Anti Terrorism Day Observed Across India on Death Anniversary of Rajiv Gandhi
21 May 2013: Anti Terrorism Day/ Martyrdom of Former Prime Minister Rajiv Gandhi Martyrdom of former Prime Minister Rajiv Gandhi, also known as Anti Terrorism Day is observed across the country on 21 May 2013. The day is celebrated as the 22nd anniversary of martyrdom of former Prime Minister Rajiv Gandhi. On 21 May 1991, Rajiv Gandhi died at the hands of terrorists. Rajiv Gandhi memorial, Vir Bhumi in New Delhi is where President Pranab Mukherjee, Vice President Hamid Ansari, Congress President Sonia Gandhi and Congress Vice President Rahul Gandhi paid homage to him. Objective of celebrating Anti Terrorism Day Anti Terrorism Day is celebrated to create awareness among different sections of people regarding the danger of terrorism and violence and its ill effect on the people. The objective is also to make people stay away from violence and terrorism. On this day, various symposia, debates, lectures, seminars and discussions are organised in universities, schools and colleges. Also anti-terrorism pledge is taken in government offices, public institutions and public sector undertakings.

Indo-Swiss Bilateral Meeting Concluded at Geneva on Sidelines of World Health Assembly

A bilateral meeting between Union Minister of Health & Family Welfare, India, Ghulam Nabi Azad and Minister of Health Switzerland, Alain Berset, was concluded on 20 May 2013 at Geneva. The meeting was held on the sidelines of World Health Assembly at Geneva. The aim of the meeting was to give further impetus to cooperation in the field of healthcare. In the past, various bilateral institutional arrangements between India and Switzerland have been signed and these include Indo-Swiss Joint Commission, Swiss- India Chamber of Commerce, Indo-Swiss Joint Committee on Science & technology and many more. In the meeting, it was decided that an MoU between the two countries will be inked soon for broadening the scope of bilateral ties. The major areas of cooperation of that MoU will be: Non-Communicable Diseases including controlling the associated risk factors of tobacco use, harmful alcohol use, unhealthy diet, etc. Communicable Diseases and Anti- Microbial resistance Universal Health Coverage Maternal & Child health Sexual & Reproductive Health Health & Medical Research Therapeutic Products Electronic Medical Records Global Health Governance In the meeting, it was exuded that Switzerland will extend full support to India on global platforms in order to carry forward the pursuits of providing high quality generic medicines at affordable prices.

India and China Signed MoUs to Address Concerns on Trade Deficit

India and China on 20 May 2013 signed three Memorandum of Understandings (MoUs) on buffalo meat, fisheries and pharmaceuticals and one agreement on feed and feed ingredients during the visit of the Premier of the State Council of the Peoples Republic of China, Li Keqiang to India. The MoUs is supposed to deal with the growing trade deficit between the two countries. It is worth mentioning here that the trade deficit has increased from 1.08 billion US Dollars in 2001-02 to 40.77 billion US Dollars in 2012-13. The resumption of exporting buffalo meat from India to China, will bring a big merchandise trade that will not only be helpful in reducing trade imbalance of India but also in Chinas food security by providing quality and hygiene meat products. Earlier the export of buffalo meat is not


allowed from India to China due to concerns about Foot & Mouth Disease. It was a long pending issue between two countries. The Other Mou was signed for import and export trade of fishery products which aims to bring cooperation in promoting trade of fishery products and healthy development of trade between India and China. Another MoU was also signed between Pharmaceuticals Export Promotion Council of India (Pharmexcil) and the China Chamber of Commerce for Import and Export of Medicines and Health Products (CCCMHPIE) which will facilitate access to the China market in pharmaceuticals. The average imports of medicinal and pharmaceutical products from China during last five years were 4332.37 million US dollars vis--vis exports from India of 692.44 million US dollars. An important agreement was signed between Export Inspection Council of India (EIC) and AQSIQ on trade and safety of feed and feed ingredients which is supposed to bring big merchandise trade for feed & feed ingredients after the resumption of trade as China has suspended import of feed and feed ingredients since 1 January 2012. Both the countries also agreed to conduct the Kailash-Mansarovar Yatra every year between May and September.

World Day for Cultural Diversity for Dialogue and Development, 21 May
21 May 2013:World Day for Cultural Diversity for Dialogue and Development World Day for Cultural Diversity for Dialogue and Development was observed on 21 May 2013. The day is observed every year to raise awareness about the importance of intercultural dialogue, diversity and inclusion. The day provides an opportunity to learn to live together in harmony. The theme this year is, Do one thing for diversity and inclusion. The day was adopted in the wake of the 9/11 terrorist attacks in the US, which claimed around 3000 lives. UNESCO adopted the Universal Declaration on Cultural Diversity in 2001, and in December 2002, the UN General Assembly declared 21 May as the World Day for Cultural Diversity for Dialogue and Development.

Singer Hariharan Conferred With the Lata Mangeshkar Samman Alankaran 2013
Singer Hariharan was conferred with the Lata Mangeshkar Samman Alankaran in Indore on 20 May 2013. The Lata Mangeshkar Samman Alankaran is conferred by the Madhya Pradesh government on playback singer, Hariharan. The award distribution was a part of three-day cultural event held in Indore. About Lata Mangeshkar Samman Alankaran Madhya Pradesh government instituted the award in 1984. The first recipient of this award was music composer Naushad. The Lata Mangeshkar Samman Alankaran consists of 2 lakh Rupees as well as citation. It is instituted by Madhya Pradesh government. The award is conferred upon to the music composer and singer alternately. In 2012, the award was given away to Rajesh Roshan. This was the 28th Annual Lata Mangeshkar Award. Hariharan is the Padma Shri recipient as well. He sung various songs in different languages including Hindi, Telugu, Bhojpuri, Malayalam, Tamil, Kannada and Marathi.

Huge Tornado Hits Oklahoma; Kills 91, Including 20 Children

Oklahoma City suburbs, US: 91 people, including 20 children were killed because of huge tornado that went through Oklahoma City suburbs in US on 20 May 2013. The worst affected area was Moore, situated towards the south of Oklahoma. The tornado travelled with the speed of 200 mph or 320 kmph. Apart from 91 killed, 120 are seriously injured. The President of US, Barack Obama declared the Oklahoma tornado as the major disaster. Tornadoes, high winds as well as hail storms hit Kansas as well. Worst tornadoes in US since 1900: 18 May 1902: 114 deaths in Goliad, Texas 24 April 1908: 143 deaths in Amite, Louisiana and Purvis Mississippi 23 March 1913: 103 deaths in Omaha, Nebraska 18 March 1925: 695 deaths in Missouri, Illinois and Indiana 5 April 1936: 216 deaths in Tupelo, Mississippi 6 April 1936: 203 deaths in Gainesville, Georgia 9 April 1947: 181 deaths in Woodward, Oklahoma


11 May 1953: 114 deaths in Waco, Texas 8 June 1953: 116 deaths in Flint, Michigan 22 May 2011: 158 deaths in Joplin, Missouri What is a tornado? Tornado is the rotating column of air which is in contact with the earth as well as cumulonimbus cloud, at the same time. They are also called cyclones or twisters. The tornado is encircled by the cloud of dust and debris. Most of the tornadoes travel with a speed of less than 110 miles per hour and are around 250 feet across. Before dissipating, they travel to several kilometres.

2014 Declared As the Friendship Year to Promote Understanding between India and China
2014: Friendship Year to promote understanding between India and China 2014 was declared as the Friendship Year by Chinese Premier Li Keqiang for increased peopleto-people interaction between India and China. 2014 was declared as the year of exchanges between the two countries in order to enhance friendship and understanding. As a measure, Li Keqiang declared that they would support Chinese enterprises to increase investments in India and help Indian products to have access to Chinese market. The objective of 2014 Friendship Year would be peaceful co-existence between India and China, which will be of global significance. Stability and peace in South-East Asia region will also be the aim of 2014 Friendship Year.

India and China signed Eight Agreement during Chinese Premier Li Keqiangs visit to India
China's new premier Li Keqiangs visited India on his first foreign trip to India from 19-22, May 2013 since taking his office in March 2013. Both the countries are looking for speeding up their efforts to settle a decades-old border dispute and strengthen economic ties. The leaders of both the countries had a thorough exchange of views on bilateral relations and regional and international issues of common interest in a sincere and cordial atmosphere and reached broad consensus. Here is the list of Documents signed during the State Visit of Chinese Premier Li Keqiang to India.


1. Protocol between Indian and China on Indian Official Pilgrimage (the Kailash Mansarovar Yatra) to the Tibet Autonomous Region of China With the signing of Protocol both the countries have agreed to conduct the Yatra every year from May to September. China will make further advancements in the existing facilities on the route of the pilgrims and to maintain even communication. They have also agreed to assist in renting wireless sets and local SIM cards. 2. Agreement on Work Programmes of the Three Working Groups under Joint Economic Group between Ministry of Commerce & Industry of India and China. The three working groups under the Joint Economic Group are: i) Services Trade Promotion Working Group ii) Economic and Trade Planning Cooperation iii) Trade Statistical Analysis 3. MoU on Buffalo Meat, Fishery Products and Agreement on Feed and Feed Ingredients between Agricultural and Processed Food Products Export Development Authority of India and China It is directly aimed at strengthening mutual cooperation in trade and safety of buffalo meat, fishery products and feed and feed ingredients, and to meet the regulatory requirements with respect to safety & hygiene & quarantine and is also supposed to deal with the growing trade deficit between the two countries. 4. MoU between the Ministry of Urban Development of India and National Development and Reform Commission of China on Cooperation in the field of Sewage Treatment The MoU signed by the Urban Development will enhance cooperation in the field of Sewage Treatment and ideas and knowledge sharing in the areas of mutual interest in the urban sectors. 5. MoU between the Ministry of Water Resources of India and The National Development and Reform Commission, of China on Cooperation in the field of Water Efficient Irrigation The MoU dirtectly aims at enhancing bilateral cooperation in the field of water efficient technology with applicability in the area of agriculture and exchange of best practices. 6. MoU between the India and the State Administration of Press, Publication, Radio, Film and Television of China on Cooperation in Mutual Translation and Publication of Classic and Contemporary Work As per the MoU a Joint Working Group will formed which will coordinate translation and publication of 25 books of Classic and Contemporary Works of each side over a period of 5 years in to Chinese and Indian languages respectively. 7. MoU between the Ministry of Water Resources of the India and the Ministry of Water Resources of China upon Provision of Hydrological Information of the Yaluzangbu/Brahmaputra River in Flood Season by China to India As per the Memorandum of Understanding China is supposed to provide India with information of water level, discharge and rainfall of 8:00 hrs and 20:00 hrs(Beijing Time) twice a day from 1st June to 15 October each year in respect of three hydrological stations on the mainstream Brahmaputra river. 8. Agreement between the Ministry of External Affairs, of India and the Ministry of Foreign Affairs, of China to facilitate cooperation and linkages between Indian and Chinese cities & states/ provinces As per this said agreement both the sides agreed to identify sister cities and sister states/ provinces in India and China with a view to establishing relationships between them in areas of mutual interest for enhancing greater people to people contacts Some Important Outcome of the Meeting between Chinese Premier Li Keqiang and Indian Prime Minister Manmohan Singh Both the Countries agreed to a regular exchange of visits between the Heads of State/ Government of the two countries. The leaders of the two countries will also continue to meet on the sidelines of important multi-lateral forums. Both the Countries agreed in further strengthening cooperation in the areas of energy and environmental conservation, new and renewable energy and high-technology. The two sides agreed to enhance cooperation in the railway sector including heavy haulage and station development. India and China showed eagerness to carry out cooperation on establishing industrial zones so that they can provide platforms for cluster-type development of enterprises of the two countries. India and China decided to mark the 60thanniversary of the Five Principles of Peaceful Coexistence (Panchsheel) in 2014 by designating it as the Year of Friendly Exchanges. Both the Country agreed to encourage their cities/provinces to establish twinning relationships in accordance with the Agreement to Facilitate Cooperation and Linkages between Indian and Chinese Cities and States/Provinces. Both the Country underlined the need to implement all relevant UN resolutions, in particular


UNSC resolutions 1267, 1373, 1540 and 1624. Both the Countries agreed to enhance coordination in the follow up process of the UN Conference on Sustainable Development and in discussions on the post 2015 development agenda as well as international negotiations on climate change. The two countries sides reaffirmed their commitment to promoting multilateral arms control, disarmament and non-proliferation processes. They support the complete prohibition and thorough destruction of all nuclear weapons and reaffirm their opposition to the weaponization of and an arms race in outer space. Both the countries agreed to work towards simplifying visa procedures. In order to pursue mutual benefit and fulfill their international cooperation objectives, both the Countries agreed in considering collaborating on development projects of common interest in third countries.

India and China set 100-billion targets for Financial Year 2014-15
India and China on 20 May 2013 decided to scale up its two-way trade to 100 billion dollars by 2015 from 67.8 bn Dollars in 2012-13. It is worth mentioning here that bilateral trade between the two countries scaled up from 2.1 bn Dollars in 2001-02 to 75.6 bn Dollars in 2011-12 and suddenly it dropped down to 67.8 bn dollars during 2012-13. Some important points to remember Indias trade deficit increased from 1.1 bn dollars in 2001-02 to 40.8 bn dollars in 2012-13. In 2012-13, China became Indias fourth largest trading partner from third largest in 20112012. Our exports fell from 18.1 bn dollars in 2011-12 to $13.5 bn in 2012-13 In year 2010, both countries had set a trade turnover target of 60 bn dolars which was achieved. An India-China CEOs Forum has been constituted to deliberate on business issues and make recommendations on expansion of trade and investment cooperation which will be head by Anil Ambani and Chen Yuan from India and China Side respectively. As per the exporters increasing of market access to China is critical for a shoot in Indias exports as the country efforts to change its export profile from raw materials to finished and valueadded products.

Arunima Sinha became the First Indian Amputee to Scale Mt Everest

Arunima Sinha, became the first Indian amputee to conquer Mount Everest on 21 may 2013. 25-year-old Arunima Sinha is former national level volleyball player and had lost one of her legs after being thrown off a moving train of Padmawati Express for resisting a chain-snatching attempt by some criminals, when she was travelling from Lucknow to Delhi on 12 April 2011. She scaled the 8848 metre-high summit of the worlds highest peak at 10.55 a.m. as IST on 21 May 2013. About Arunima Sinha She was hospitalised with serious leg and pelvic injuries and in a proposition to save her life, doctors had to amputate her left leg below the knee. Arunima successfully scaled the 6622-metre-high Mount Chhamser Kangri of Ladakh in year 2012 . Arunima started training at the Tata Steel Adventure Foundation (TSAF) camp in Uttarkashi last year under the guidance of Bachendri Pal, the first Indian woman to conquer Mt Everest.

US senators approved 5000 Visas for Tibet Refugees

US lawmakers on 21 May 2013 approved the provision of 5000 visas to Tibetan refugees to enter the US over the next three years which is aimed at aimed at fixing the US immigration system. The measure, approved by the Senate Judiciary Committee by voice vote, is supposed to make conditions easier for displaced Tibetans living in India and Nepal, where Tibetan resettlement facilities is around 50 years old. Some important points to be Remembered The immigration Bill would ultimately provide a 13-year path to citizenship, or longer, for most of the 11 million people living in the US illegally. However, its prospects of getting through both the Senate and the House of Representatives remain uncertain. The Tibetan visa provision would take effect if the wider Bill becomes law. More than 110 Tibetans who have self immolated since 2009, with most dying of their injuries, in demonstrations against what they view as Chinese oppression. Senators have already waded through nearly a third of the more than 300 amendments being


considered for the bipartisan immigration bill. Several of the measures are aimed at making the sweeping legislation more palatable to conservatives.

22-MAY-2013 Shashi Kant Sharma Appointed as the New Comptroller & Auditor General of India
The President of Indian Union, Pranab Mukherjee on 21 May 2013 appointed Shashi Kant Sharma as the new Comptroller and Auditor General (CAG) of India. Shashi Kant Sharma will succeed Vinod Rai who superannuates on 21 May 2013 after completing tenure of five and a half years as the Head of the Constitutional Financial body. His appointment to the post of CAG by the President was made on basis of Article 148 (1) of the Constitution of India. He will assume the charge to the office of CAG on 23 May 2013 after administering the oath of the office by the President of India. About Shashi Kant Sharma He is the IAS officer of 1976 Bihar Cadre and at present was holding the post of Defence Secretary in the Ministry of Defence, Government of India. He holds a Masters degree in Political Science from the University of York He has served as the Secretary in the Department of Financial Services The Comptroller and Auditor General (CAG) of India is appointed for a maximum term of six years or till he attends the age of 65 years, whichever is earlier. Earlier, during the tenure of Vinod Rai, CAG came under sharp attacks from the Union Government of India for its assessment reports of 1.76 lakh crore rupees loss in Allocation of 2G Spectrum and Public Exchequers Loss at 1.86 Lakh Crore in Coal Blocks Allocation. Tenure of Vinod Rai to the office of CAG was accused for going beyond its ambit of auditing and analyzing the policy decisions.

Malala Yousafzai, the Pakistani Activist Selected for UNA-USA's Champion for Global Change Award
The Pakistani activist, Malala Yousafzai (15) was selected for UNA-USA's Global Leadership Award called Champion for Global Change Award for 2013, in the month of May 2013. Malala Yousafzai was shot in 2012 by Taliban for promotion of girl education. She will receive the Champion for Global Change Award for 2013 at Gotham Hall on 6 November 2013 in the event which will be hosted by UN Foundation and benefits UN Foundation and the United Nations Association of the USA (UNA-USA)'s Global Classrooms Model UN programme. It was declared on 20 May 2013 that Malala will receive the UNA-USA's Global Leadership Award for advocating education as well as empowerment of girls across the world. In 2012, the UN Secretary, General Ban Ki-moon had declared 10 November as the Malala Day. She was also given the title of daughter of the United Nations. UN Foundation as well as UNA-USA, together represents a single largest network of American supporters of UN. List of awardees selected for UNA-USA's Global Leadership Award 2013: Malala Yousafzai for advocating education of girls and empowerment of girls Front-line polio workers for commitment to vaccine those who have threat of contracting polio 10x10 for efforts to make sure that all girls receive education GE Africa for helping the countries in Africa on challenges to meet the demands of water and clean energy

The Second US-India Homeland Security Dialogue was held in Washington

The second US-India Homeland Security Dialogue was held in Washington on 21 May 2013. At the end of the dialogue, the two nations reaffirmed the commitment to, and importance of, bilateral homeland security cooperation between the US and India on common challenges faced such as terrorism, and countering violent extremism. It was decided to strengthen the global strategic partnership between the United States and India on issues ranging from cyber-security and megacity policing, to counterterrorism and countering violent extremism. India and USA reaffirmed the commitment of the two nations to work cooperatively on law enforcement issues, to combat common threats, improve bilateral cooperation through the development and application of innovative technology, combat the flow of illicit finances and currency counterfeiting, and to work closely to counter terrorism and promote cyber-security. The United States and India planned to enhance cybersecurity and critical infrastructure pro-


tection engagement; increase training on countering illicit financing through DHS' Cross Border Financial Investigations Training Program; share best practices and lessons learned in the context of megacity policing; and identify areas in which the United States and India can collaborate on science and technology development and its application in the homeland security context. The United States and India will explore areas in which to share best practices and lessons learned by both countries on how to enhance the ability of federal, state and local police to better detect, prevent and respond to acts of violent extremism. In May 2011, the first Homeland security dialogue between India and USA was held in India.

Scientists discovered that Vitamin C kills Tuberculosis (TB)

Scientists recently discovered that Vitamin C kills tuberculosis. Scientists in an experiment managed to kill lab-grown tuberculosis (TB) bacteria with good old Vitamin C. This scientific discovery will lead to better, cheaper drugs. A team from Albert Einstein College of Medicine in New York made the finding while researching how TB bacteria become resistant to the TB drug isoniazid. TB was declared a global health emergency by the World Health Organisation (WHO) 20 years ago, but remains a leading cause of death by an infectious disease despite a 41-percent drop in the death rate from 1990 to 2011. As per WHO data, in 2011, 8.7 million people fell ill with TB and 1.4 million died.

Andrea Colaco Developed Accurate 3D Gesture Sensing Technology on Mobiles

Andrea Colaco, a native of South Goa's Velim in May 2013 developed real-time, millimetre accurate 3D gesture sensing on the mobile phones. The development will enable the users in interacting with the devices via medium of thin air. This would also pass the touchscreen technology. Earlier in May 2013, Andrea Colaco also won the 100000 US dollar entrepreneurship competition of Massachusetts Institute Technology (MIT) for the innovation. She explained that in the immediate market like cellphone devices, gesture recognition is the only next interface for the devices. This innovation was put on the podium at a competition as 3dim solution. 3dim solution was set up by Andrea Colaco along with its co-founder Ahmed Kirmani. The technology accomplishes highquality 3D sensing when it employs patented signal processing ways which were invented at Massachusetts Institute Technology. For the panel of scientists, industry professionals, venture capitalists and the entrepreneurs who judged the eight finalists out of 3000 participants at the entrepreneurship competition of Massachusetts Institute Technology (MIT) for the innovation, Andrea Colacos idea was the most appropriate one from finance point of view. About Andrea Colaco Andrea Colaco earned her Bachelors as well as Masters degree along with the doctorate seats from prestigious Massachusetts Institute Technology (MIT). She has also won various Goa scholars award 2010. She has remained a student of Margao's Fatima Convent High School and ranked second at Goa board Class X exams in 2001. In 2003, she topped Class XII exams as well.

International Day for Biological Diversity observed on 22 May

22 May 2013: The International Day for Biological Diversity The International Day for Biological Diversity was observed on 22 May 2013. The day is observed on the 22 May every year, to increase the understanding and awareness of biodiversity issues. The theme this year is Water and Biodiversity. A number of programmes were organised across the globe to mark the day. The theme, Water and Biodiversity, was chosen to coincide with the UN designation of 2013 as the International year of water cooperation. The theme speaks of the important role of biodiversity and ecosystems for water security, and therefore for sustainable development. Water underpins human well being and is absolutely necessary for food security, drinking and sanitation, economic activities, as well as securing eco-system services. The day also reminds us of the need to balance the needs of biodiversity conservation with those of protesting the livelihoods of millions of people across the globe.


New Delhi Ranked First on List of Top 10 Favourite Indian Destinations for Foreigners: Report
Hotel Price Index (HPI) report of 2012 by revealed that the metro cities of India remain at the top most positions in the list of top 10 favourite Indian destinations for the international travellers. The national capital of India, New Delhi ranked first followed by Mumbai. The third most favourite destination for the international travellers was the beach capital of India, Goa. Other favourite destinations included south Indian cities of Bengaluru and Chennai which ranked fourth and fifth respectively. At the sixth position was Pink City of Jaipur. In terms of Indians planning the trips abroad, the destination that dominated the top 10 favourite spots in the list were South East Asian destinations. The most preferred destination for the Indian travellers was Bangkok because of great value rates. At the number 2 position was Singapore. Pattaya was at number fourth position while Hong Kong followed it with 5th rank. Phuket was at the 7th position and Kuala Lumper remained at 9th position. New York and Las Vegas were at 8th and 10th positions respectively. London remained at 6th position and Dubai grabbed the 3rd position. is the leading online accommodation booking portal which features 1.5 lakh properties across the world that range from international chains to all-inclusive resorts. The Hotel Price Index (HPI) report The Hotel Price Index (HPI) report is the regular survey about the prices of the hotels in some of the major tourist destinations across the world. Hotel Price Index (HPI) report by is treated as one of the definitive reports on the prices of the hotels. It is referred by the hoteliers, tourism bodies, academics, financial analysts, investors as well as media.

Yahoo Introduced Revamp in Flickr with 1TB Free Storage

Yahoo, in the month of May 2013, redesigned the Flickr photo-sharing service by offering its users up to 1 TB storage without levying any fee. The restoration enables the users to host the longer video clips as well as high resolution photos. Apart from this, new app was also launched for the Android devices. The principal technology analyst at consultants Davies Murphy Group Europe, Chris Green explained that this move by Yahoo would help it in putting Flickr back in the market. This also shows the competition with Google. Google offers its users an overall free storage of 15 GB across the primary cloud service. Facebook, on the other hand, has no defined limits like these, but it adjusts by compromising on the quality of high-resolution images. Flickr was bought by Yahoo in 2005. The number of users increased on the site since then, but it still did not reached up to its maximum potential, especially when compared to the competitors like 500px, Facebook and Instagram. New features introduced in revamped Flickr 1TB upload limit A redesigned user-interface New Activity Feed New Android app Larger 200MB limit on every photos size Three-minute cap on playback of video clips However, certain charges have also been levied. For example, users wishing for advert-free interface will have to shell out 49.99 US dollar yearly. Anyone who wishes to get 2TB storage limit will have to pay 499.99 US dollar yearly.

10 Percent of UK Wildlife Is Endangered: State of Nature Report

Around 60 percent of the British animal as well as plant species declined in last 5 decades, leaving one out of 10 species to disappear revealed the latest State of Nature report. The State of Nature report is compiled together by 25 wildlife organisations, which include RSPB and British Lichen Society. The report assembles assessments of 3148 species, while also hinting towards 59000 species of UK. The species in which largest declines were observed included hedgehogs, turtle doves, red squirrels and water voles. The report indicated that there were various reasons for the decline in these species but major factors were habitat degradation and rising temperatures. The worst affected are the species which require specific habitat, but are not able to adapt in accordance with the changing environment of the country. Naturalist Sir David Attenborough launched this report and explained that though the species of UK were in trouble but there is a huge network of conversation groups that will help in preservation


of these species. The State of Nature report extracts data from individual reports which were published in the recent past and explained the positions of mammals, moths, bees and birds of UK. The report revealed gaps in certain data, primarily marine species, invertebrates and fungi, but also additionally offered expertise in marine conservation and moss conservation. Formerly, threatened plants and animals which were considered as the priority species were included in the Biodiversity Action Plans of the UK government in order to target and formalize the conservation actions. The State of Nature report also indicated the watchlist which explains how the populations of these species fell in past 5 decades. Conservationists explained that it was difficult to provide the definitive list of most endangered species of UK because of complexities involved in comparison of different species. However, following species from 10 diverse groups of UK were highlighted: Turtle Doves Hedgehogs Small Tortoise Shell Butterfly Natterjack Toad European Eel Early Bumblebee V-moth Corn cleavers Harbour Seals Bastard Gumwood

Indo-China Bilateral Meet on Healthcare Sector held in Geneva

India-China bilateral meet on healthcare sector in Geneva was held in Geneva on 21 May 2013. The meeting was held on the sidelines of World Health Assembly with the objective of strengthening of bilateral cooperation between the two countries in healthcare sector. India and China stressed to have a more broad-based cooperation in healthcare sector and suggested to formulate a comprehensive framework after mutual consultations to give further impetus to bilateral ties. Both the nations were of the opinion to have a closer cooperation in specific areas like maternal and child health, infectious diseases, geriatrics, emerging health challenges, besides collaboration in specific projects. It was also realized that Working Groups should meet more frequently to do the groundwork for more intense and meaningful cooperation. China was especially enthusiastic to forge collaboration for dealing with the threat posed by leukemia. China also offered to have joint research projects in this area. China can access costeffective medicines from India for the treatment of leukemia. India and China being great proponents of traditional medicines can fruitfully collaborate in this area for mutual benefit. In fact, India is one of the largest suppliers of quality generic medicines. China can reduce healthcare costs and out-of pocket expenses by sourcing medicines from India. India and China can learn a lot from each other considering the fact that both countries have huge populations to look after and attained independence at the same time. They drew attention towards the bilateral agreement of 1994 relating to health sector and emphasized the need to hasten the work in the areas identified for bilateral cooperation.

Fifty Five Beaches of England Won Blue Flag Awards for Meeting High EU Standards
Fifty Five beaches of England met the new EU standards and received the Blue Flag awards in the month of May 2013. The Blue Flag awards were given away to recognise water quality as well as high standards of the beaches. Thanet in Kent received eight awards in all and Isle of Wight, Bournemouth and Poole in Dorset, and Torbay in Devon won four awards each. The Blue Flag awards scheme is run by Campaign group Keep Britain Tidy in England. A total of fifty-five beaches is decreased from 2012s total of 79 beaches. However, in 2013, the beaches of England were kept on tougher standards. New excellent standards were designed under new EU Bathing Waters Directive. Other beaches that received the Blue Flag awards in 2013 included Lowestoft South Claremont


in Suffolk, Whitby in North Yorkshire, Central Beach in Skegness, Lincolnshire and Martello Bay at Clacton-on-Sea in Essex. Apart from this, 133 beaches in England were also given the clean status and received Seaside Awards also called Quality Coast Awards - by Keep Britain Tidy. Across England, The Isle of Wight was awarded maximum number of awards with 13 Seaside Awards and 4 Blue Flags.

Eddie Braben, the British Comedy Writer and Performer Died at 82

Eddie Braben, the British comedy writer as well as performer, renowned for Morecambe and Wise died on 21 May 2013. He was 82 years of age. He is survived by his wife, three children and six grandchildren. About Eddie Braben Eddie Braben was born on 31 October 1930. He became the full-time comedy writer in 1950s. His most popular comedy write up was Morecambe and Wise, which was written in 1969. Sir Bruce Forsyth, the English TV entertainer and host gave him the title of third man of the comedy. His first joke was sold for two shillings and six pence to Charlie Chester. He starred in radio comedies in 1970s. His first radio comedies included The Show with Ten Legs. In 2001, he wrote The Play What I Wrote in collaboration with Hamish McColl and Sean Foley. This play won the Olivier award as well. In 1972, he won the special Bafta award for contribution to TV.

Election Commission Signed MoU on Electoral Literacy

The Election Commission of India and the National Literacy Mission Authority, Ministry of Human Resource Development, on 21 May 2013 signed a Memorandum of Understanding (MoU) on Electoral Literacy and Greater Participation for a Stronger and Inclusive Democracy in New Delhi. The MOU is the first ever by the Election Commission of India with a Government Department. Under the MoU, ECI and NLMA will work jointly to sensitize citizens, especially the vulnerable and disadvantaged including women, SCs, STs, Minorities, in NLMA covered districts, about their electoral rights and about exercise of franchise. Electoral Literacy will form part of curriculum for adult Literacy and Basic education. NLMA will spread electoral literacy during its environment Building and mass mobilization campaigns, with specific focus on electoral registration and informed and ethical voting in co-ordination with the Election Commission. The MOU will help bridge the deficit in enrolment, particularly among women and the youth. It can be described as a historic beginning and innovative collaboration based on common objectives. Such convergence could serve as a model for governance for more empowered democracy.

Former International Sprinter Anand Shetty Passed Away

Former international sprinter Anand Shetty passed away on 21 May 2013 in Mangalore. He is survived by his wife, daughter and son. He met with a car accident and was rushed to KMC Hospital where he succumbed to his injuries. He was 49 years old. He was an excellent athlete and earned a name for himself in the 100m and 200m sprints with his running. Anand came to limelight after winning silver in the 200m at the World Junior Games in Seoul in 1982. He was also the 100 and 200m National champion from 1981 to 1989, a period marked by his inter-State and Open National records.

Age limit for Financial Assistance under JSY for Institutional Deliveries Relaxed
The Union Ministry of Health and Family Welfare on 21 May 2013 relaxed the eligibility parameters for the Janani Suraksha Yojana (JSY), with an expectation of reducing the neonatal and maternal mortality in young mothers. Janani Suraksha Yojana provides financial assistance to mothers for institutional deliveries. With the relaxation of the scheme, the women who belong to Below Poverty Line (BPL) category can get an access to JSY benefits irrespective of their age and the number of Children they have. The benefits of the scheme is extended to every women from BPL Category as well as Scheduled Castes and Scheduled Tribes from all States and Union Territories of the country if they give birth to the new one in Government as well as the Private accredited health facility, as well as to those women from BPL category who delivers at home (as part of their choice).


About the Janani Suraksha Yojana (JSY) Janani Suraksha Yojana (JSY) is a safe motherhood intervention under the National Rural Health Mission (NRHM) that is implemented with the objective of reducing maternal and neo-natal mortality by promoting institutional delivery among the poor pregnant women. The Yojana, launched on 12 April 2005, by the Prime Minister, is being implemented in all states and UTs with special focus on low performing states. JSY is a 100 % centrally sponsored scheme and it integrates cash assistance with delivery and post-delivery care. The success of the scheme would be determined by the increase in institutional delivery among the poor families Eligibility for Cash Assistance (before relaxation)
LPS States All pregnant women delivering in Government health centres like Sub-centre, PHC/CHC/ FRU / general wards of District and state Hospitals or accredited private institutions HPS States BPL - pregnant women, aged 19 years and above LPS & HPS All SC and ST women delivering in a government health centre like Sub-centre, PHC/CHC/ FRU / general ward of District and state Hospitals or accredited private institutions

Reason behind Age Relaxation The decision of relaxing the age parameters for the JSY came up after the Government realized that the majority of women who could have been benefitted with the scheme needed to prove that they were above 19 years in age and didnt had more than two children. Because of the initial parameters that existed under the purview of the JSY scheme, the JSY failed to respond to the maternal mortality of the girls aged 14-15 (who suffered maximum), as they didnt succeeded in getting the age verification as well as the number of children they had. The Union Health Ministry data claims that after the launch of the scheme, there has been an increase in the institutional deliveries of from 47 percent in 2007-08 to 72.9 percent in 2009 (Coverage Evaluation Survey).

Census 2011:Gurgaon has Lowest Sex ratio in Haryana

According to data released by Haryana Census department in Chandigarh for Census 2011, lowest sex ratio was observed in Gurgaon at 854, Sonipat at 856 and Jhajjar at 862. The highest sex ratio was registered in Mewat at 907, followed by Fatehabad at 902, as per Census 2011. Overall sex ratio of Haryana increased from 861 in 2001 to 879 as per the census 2011. The Major Facts related to Census of Haryana As per details from Census 2011, Haryana has population of 2.53 Crore, an increase from figure of 2.11 Crore in 2001 census. Total population of Haryana as per 2011 census is 25353081 of which male and female are 13505130 and 11847951 respectively. In 2001, total population was 21144564 in which males were 11363953 while females were 9780611. The total population growth in this decade was 19.90 percent while in previous decade it was 28.06 percent. The population of Haryana forms 2.09 percent of India in 2011. In 2001, the figure was 2.06 percent. Literacy rate in Haryana has seen upward trend and is 76.64 percent as per 2011 population census. Of that, male literacy stands at 85.38 percent while female literacy is at 66.77 percent. In 2001, literacy rate in Haryana stood at 67.91 percent of which male and female were 76.10 percent and 59.61 percent literate respectively. In actual numbers, total literates in Haryana stands at 16904324 of which males were 9991838 and females were 6912486. Total area of Haryana is 44212 sq. km. Population Density of Haryana is 573 person per sq km which is higher than national average 382 per sq km. In 2001, density of Haryana was 478 person per sq km, while nation average in 2001 was 324 person per sq km. Sex Ratio in Haryana is 877 i.e. for each 1000 male, which is below national average of 940 as per census 2011. In 2001, the sex ratio of female was 861 per 1000 males in Haryana. Out of total population of Haryana, 34.79 percent people live in urban regions. The total figure of population living in urban areas is 8821588 of which 4714094 are males and while remaining 4107494 are females. The urban population in the last 10 years has increased by 44.25 percent. Sex Ratio in urban regions of Haryana was 871 females per 1000 males. For child (0-6) sex ratio the figure for urban region stood at 829 girls per 1000 boys. Total children (0-6 age) living in


urban areas of Haryana were 1054823. Of total population in urban region, 11.96 percent were children (0-6). Average Literacy rate in Haryana for Urban regions was 83.83 percent in which males were 89.37 percent literate while female literacy stood at 77.51 percent. Total literates in urban region of Haryana were 6510733. Of the total population of Haryana state, around 65.21 percent live in the villages of rural areas. In actual numbers, males and females were 8791036 and 7740457 respectively. Total population of rural areas of Haryana state was 16531493. The population growth rate recorded for this decade (2001-2011) was 10.00 percent. In rural regions of Haryana state, female sex ratio per 1000 males was 880 while same for the child (0-6 age) was 831 girls per 1000 boys. In Haryana, 2242901 children (0-6) live in rural areas. Child population forms 13.57 percent of total rural population. In rural areas of Haryana, literacy rate for males and female stood at 83.20percent and 60.97 percent. Average literacy rate in Haryana for rural areas was 72.74 percent. Total literates in rural areas were 10393591.

India successfully Test Fired BrahMos Supersonic Cruise Missile

India on 22 May 2013 successfully test fired the 290-km range BrahMos supersonic cruise missile from the Navy's latest guided missile frigate INS Tarkash off the coast of Goa. The missile performed the high-level 'C' manoeuvre in the pre-determined flight path and successfully hit the target. Jointly developed by India and Russia, the BrahMos is capable of carrying a conventional warhead of 300 kg. India is readying several different versions of the missile which includes land attack, anti-ship and submarine- launched versions.

Oommen Chandy Won United Nation's Public Service Award for Mass Contact Programme
The Chief Minister of Kerala, Oommen Chandy won United Nation's Public Service Award for his Mass Contact Programme on 22 May 2013. In the Mass Contact Programme, he engaged with masses of Kerala to address the grievances. He was conferred with the first prize from the Asia Pacific region along with other awardees that are selected on yearly basis from five different zones of the world. About United Nation's Public Service Award Since the year 2003, United Nations has been awarding people as part of the programme for Public Service Day that is celebrated on 23 June. The United Nation's Public Service Award was instituted through the UN resolution and are announced after the three-tier security as well as meticulous examination. The candidates who are shortlisted are kept under examination by the seven-member subcommittee of Committee of Experts in Public Administration of the United Nations. The UN Public Service Day ceremonies are scheduled to be organised from 24 June 2013 to 27 June 2013 in Bahrain. The UN Secretary-General Ban Ki-Moon will confer the awards on the awardees on 27 June 2013. The Mass Contact Programme of Oommen Chandy The Mass Contact Programme was appraised worldwide as the democratic experiment. The CM of Kerala, Oommen Chandy met a lot of people without intermediaries. He got up to 5.5 lakh petitions, out of which he resolved approximately 3 lakh petitions and also distributed financial aid of 22.68 crore Rupees as part of this programme. The criteria of evaluation included mechanism for increasing the ability of people to receive information on time, monitor the decision making as well as transparency. Other parameters included documentation and accountability, procedural as well as fiscal requirement as well as evidence of the conformity of government.

American Writer Lydia Davis won 2013 Man Booker International Prize
American writer Lydia Davis won 2013 Man Booker International Prize for her innovative and influential writing. The winner of the Prize was announced at the awards ceremony at Victoria and Albert Museum in London on 22 may 2013. This was the fifth Man Booker International Prize. Lydia Davis is a professor of creative writing at the University of Albany. She is also an accomplished translator. Her works include The End of the Story and Varieties of Disturbance. Lydia Davis is also known for her work as a translator of French literature and philosophy, most notably of


Marcel Proust and Gustave Flaubert. Her translations led her to be named a Chevalier of the Order of Arts and Letters by the French government. Well-known Kannada author UR Ananthamurthy was the only Indian to be shortlisted for the prestigious award. The Man Booker International Prize recognises one writer for his or her achievement in fiction. Worth 60000 ponds, the prize is awarded every two years to a living author who has published fiction either originally in English or whose work is generally available in translation in the English language. The winner is chosen solely at the discretion of the judging panel and there are no submissions from publishers. The Man Booker International Prize is significantly different from the annual Man Booker Prize for Fiction. In seeking out literary excellence, the judges consider a writer's body of work rather than a single novel.

23-MAY-2013 Ray Manzarek, One of the Founders of the Doors Died at 74

Ray Manzarek, one of the founders of 1960s rock group called The Doors, died on 20 May 2013 in Rosenheim, Germany. He was 74 years of age. He died because of bile duct cancer. About Ray Manzarek Ray Manzarek was born on 12 February 1939. He was a musician, songwriter as well as a filmmaker. In the year 1965, he formed The Doors along with singer Jim Morrison, guitarist Robbie Krieger and drummer John Densmore. His major genres included rock and roll, Psychedelic rock, jazz rock, jazz fusion, funk, blues rock, acid rock, blues and hard rock. The instruments that he played included percussion, keyboards, keyboard bass, guitar, Marxophone and vocals. After playing in The Doors, he also played in Nite City. In the year 2010, he recorded along with the guitarist Roy Rogers. In 2011, his album called Translucent Blues was released and it was ranked at number 3 position on Top 100 Roots Rock Albums of 2011 by The Roots Music Report.

Preeti Beniwal won gold in 2013 Senior National Women's Boxing Championship
Pugilist Preeti Beniwal on 22 May 2013 bagged the gold medal in Senior National Women's Boxing Championship. In the event held at Khatima, uttarakhand, Preeti out-punched Manipur's Y Sandhya 22-9 in the final of the 60kg category. Preeti Beniwal was born on 25 December 1987. She hails from Hisar. Her father Subey Singh is a boxing coach. Her elder sister is married to famous Indian Boxer Akhil Kumar. Preeti is employed with Haryana Police as sub inspector. Preeti Beniwals Boxing Career Gold in 58th All India Police Women Boxing Championship, Pune, Maharashtra from 2010-0406 to 2010-04-10. Gold in 4 N.C. Sharma Memorial Federation Cup Women Boxing Champioships 2008-09 at Nainital, Uttarakhand. Gold in 9th Senior Women National Boxing Championships at St. John's College,, Agra from 2008-11-02 to 2008-11-07 Gold in Trg.-cum-compet Canada, 2008 Gold in Women Open Boxing Tournament Hanoi, 2006

Madhya Pradesh Plan for 2013-14 Finalised at 35500 Crore Rupees

The Annual Plan for the year 2013-14 for the state of Madhya Pradesh was finalised in New Delhi on 22 May 2013 at a meeting between Deputy Chairman, Planning Commission, Montek Singh Ahluwalia and Chief Minister of Madhya Pradesh, Shivraj Singh Chouhan. The plan size has been agreed at 35500 crore rupees. During the meeting, attention was drawn to strong potential available in both culture and tourism sectors, the State was advised to focus more on development of projects in these sectors . It was pointed out that the State continues to lag behind All India average in most of the Socio-Economic indicators. There is a widening gap between per capita income of State (27850 rupees) and the Country (43624 rupees). The State has to take continuous and a concerted effort to improve its the development indicators. The Twelfth Five Year Plan, which aims for faster, more inclusive and


sustainable growth, will require continued work in several areas of development and a change in strategy in some others. Madhya Pradesh government sought Planning Commission support in getting adequate allocation of coal blocks and coal-linkages, forest clearance for power projects, continuing the present funding pattern of Central Share in SarvaShikshaAbhiyan (SSA), increasing Central Assistance of Viability Gap Fund for infrastructure projects.

Pratibha Ray Conferred With the 47th Jnanpith Award for the Year 2011
The President of India, Pranab Mukherjee conferred the 47th Jnanpith Award for the year 2011 on Pratibha Ray on 22 May 2013 at Balyogi Auditorium in New Delhi. The award includes cash prize of 11 lakh Rupees, a citation as well as bronze replica of Goddess Saraswati. About Dr. Pratibha Ray Pratibha Ray was born in Alabol, a village in Jagatsingpur district of Odisha. She is the first Oriya woman and fourth Oriya writer to get the coveted award. Prior to her, Sitakant Mahapatra (1993), Sachidananda Rout Roy (1986) and Gopinath Mohanty (1973) were the other Oriya writers to be conferred with this award. Her first novel was Barsa Basanta Baishakha in 1974, for which she was recognised as a writer for the first time. The most acclaimed work of Pratibha Ray was Yajnaseni, for which she received Bharatiya Jnanpith Trusts Moorti Devi Award in 1991. She was the first woman to be conferred with this prestigious Moorti Devi Award in 1991. Apart from this, she also won various awards such as Orissa Sahitya Akademi Award, Moortidevi Award by Bharatiya Jnanpith and Saptarshi Award. Pratibha Ray has 20 novels, 24 short stories, 10 travelogues, two poetry collections and a number of essays to her credit. Her literary works have been translated into not just English, but various other foreign languages and various Indian languages as well. Pratibha Ray is one of the most widely read Oriya novelists and short story writers. She is also renowned for her role of womans voice. Her works revolve around various themes such as racial consciousness, mythology, lifestyle, fiction, rural culture and many more. Her novels have various subject matters as well as interests. About the Jnanpith Award The Jnanpith Award is one of the highest literary honours of India. Other honour includes Sahitya Akademi Fellowship. This award was instituted first in 1961 and is presented by Bharatiya Jnanpith, the trust founded by Sahu Jain family, the publishers of The Times of India newspaper. Any Indian citizen who presents his/her work in any official Indian language can be eligible for this award. G. Sankara Kurup was the first one to receive this award in 1965. Post 2011, the cash prize of this award has been increased from 7 lakh Rupees to 11 lakh Rupees.

Mangalore University and BARC Signed MoU for Collaborative Research on Radioactivity
The University Science Instrumentation Centre at Mangalagangotri and Bhabha Atomic Research Centre (BARC) signed a memorandum of understanding (MoU) for conducting collaborative research on amount of radioactivity in Chitradurga district. Bhabha Atomic Research Centre (BARC) and Mangalore University, in the month of May 2013, decided to conduct the collaborative research on quantity of radioactivity in or around Dodda Ullarti near Challakere in Chitradurga district. BARC is constructing its new campus on 1810 acres. There will be a special material facility whose aim would be upgrade the nuclear fuel which in turn will be used for applications such as strategic purposes as well as power production. Objective of the MoU: The objective of this MoU is carrying out detailed and independent study in order to establish the extensive baseline database on radiation levels as well as radionuclides in or around Dodda Ullarti. Also, the aim is to conduct study for understanding concentration of stable elements in environment around the area of Dodda Ullarti. In order to facilitate the detailed and independent study, environmental samples (which include


aquatic, atmospheric and terrestrial samples) will be gathered from around this project site, within the 30 km radius. Detailed analysis would be conducted on 222 Rn concentration in outdoor as well as indoor air and in the ground water as well. 222 Rn is the colourless, radon, radio-active gas which is formed during the process when uranium and thorium decay into lead.

Chennai Airport Ranked Much Lower than Targeted on ACIs Airport Service Quality Rating
The findings of the Airports Council International (ACI) survey in the month of May 2013 gave the Chennai Airport an Airport Service Quality (ASQ) rating of 3.21 out of five for the year 2012. It is important to note that the target of rating of Chennai Airport was 4.1. The reasons for much lower rating are crowded parking places, poor Internet connectivity as well as bad toilet facilities. Poor shopping facility was another reason for low rating. These are the parameters for the Airport Service Quality (ASQ) rating. The Chennai Airport was rated on overall 33 parameters. Airport Authority of India (AAI), in the meanwhile, explained that old terminals of the Chennai Airport had various issues and the services were poorly maintained. In case attention was not given on these, the Chennai Airport might also be removed completely from the ACI list of airports. Airports Council International (ACI) is an international body comprising of 597 member airports as well as airport authorities which operate more than 1679 airports in a total of 177 countries.

Chief of IMF Questioned at Paris Court over Bernard Tapie Payout Amount
The Chief of International Monetary Fund Christine Lagarde was questioned at the Court of Justice of the Republic (CJR) in Paris over payout amount to the magnate Bernard Tapie during her tenure as a finance minister. In the Paris court, she was asked to explain the handling of 2007 row which led to payout of 400 million Euros to Bernard Tapie. The Court of Justice of the Republic (CJR) will be investigating the ministerial misconduct. Background of the case The roots of the case go back to 1993 when Bernard Tapie, the known business tycoon in French world, sold the stake in Adidas to Credit Lyonnais. After that, the bank sold the same stake for higher profits, after which Tapie claimed to be defrauded. In 2007, the finance minister was suggested by French President Nicolas Sarkozy to move this case to arbitration. Bernard Tapie, eventually won higher payout than expected in the court.

Indian Rupee touched New 6-Month Low at 55.83 against US Dollar

The Indian rupee on 23 May 2013 declined by 37 paise to trade at a fresh six-month low of 55.83 in early trade at the Interbank Foreign Exchange market. Besides dollars strengthening against euro and other currencies in the overseas markets, sustained dollar demand from importers and some banks and a lower opening in the stock market put pressure on Indian currency. On 22 May 2013, the rupee had lost five paise to close at 55.46, its lowest closing since 27 November 2012. Meanwhile, the BSE benchmark Sensex fell by 84.54 points, or 0.42 per cent, to 19977.70 in early trade on 23 May 2013.

Yuichiro Miura, 80-Year-Old Japanese Mountaineer Became Oldest Man to Climb Mount Everest
Yuichiro Miura, the 80-year old mountaineer from Japan reached Mount Everests summit on 23 May 2013. With this, he became the oldest man to climb the highest mountain peak of the world. Yuichiro Miura climbed the Everest at the age of 70 and 75 as well. As the oldest man to climb Mount Everest, he replaced Nepal's Min Bahadur Sherchan who climbed the Everest at the age of 76 years in 2008. It is important to note that Min Bahadur Sherchan will again attempt climbing Mount Everest in the last week of May 2013, at the age of 81 years. Yuichiro Miura reached the height of 29035 foot (8850-meter). He climbed the Everest with three more Japanese climbers, which included his son and six Nepalis Sherpas.

Nigerian Author Chinua Achebe died following a Brief Illness

Renowned Nigerian author Chinua Achebe died on 22 March 2013 in Boston at the age of 82 following a brief illness. He had been living in the US since 1990 after a car crash left him partially paralysed and in a wheelchair. South African writer and Nobel laureate Nadine Gordimer called


him the father of modern African literature in 2007. In fact, she was among the judges to award him the Man Booker International Prize in honour of his literary career in the same year. Chinua Achebe Fact-Sheet He was Born in 1930, 30 years before Nigeria's independence His First novel Things Fall Apart was published in 1958; sold 10 million copies He wrote about the effects of colonialism and corruption Nelson Mandela called him the writer in whose company the prison walls came down Involved in a road accident in 1990 which left him partially paralysed Refused Nigerian honours In 2012, Achebe published a long-awaited memoir about the brutal three-year Biafran war when the south-eastern Igbo region tried to split from Nigeria in 1967. Achebe's body is due to be buried near his family's home in Ogidi, a small town in the hills of Anambra state.

Manmohan Singh laid the Foundation Stone of National Defence University

The Prime Minister of India, Manmohan Singh on 23 May 2013 laid the foundation stone of the Indian National Defence University (INDU) at Binola, Gurgaon. The university is going to be an autonomous institution of national importance. The Defence University came up following the recommendation of the Review Committee constituted after the Kargil Conflict by the Government for the establishment of a University that deals exclusively with defence and strategic matters. The review committee was headed by eminent strategic expert K Subrahmanyam. Aim of INDU INDU aims to provide knowledge based higher education for management of the defence of India to the military leadership and other concerned civilian officials. It will also keep them abreast of the emerging security challenges via scholarly Research and Training It will develop and propagate higher education in Defence Studies like Defence Management, Defence Science and Technology. It will also promote the policy with its orientation towards, research related to National Defence. It will prepare officers for high level leadership as well as staff and policy responsibilities The think tanks of the University will be responsible for providing inputs for Policy Formulations It will focus on higher education in defence studies, defence management and defence science and technology The university will offer post graduate studies and doctoral / post doctoral research Constituent Colleges and Institutions of INDU National College of Defence Studies (NCDS) Indian Institute of Defence Technology (IIDT) Indian Institute of Defence Management (IIDM) Defence Institute of Distance and Open Learning (DIDOL) Institutes and Colleges of Indian armed forces that will be affiliated through INDU National Defence College (NDC) New Delhi Defence Services Staff College (DSSC) Wellington College of Defence Management (CDM) Secunderabad National Defence Academy (NDA) Khadakwasla The University will be instituted by the Act of the Parliament and President of Indian Union will be a visitor to it and Defence Minister will be the Chancellor. INDU will be governed as per its own norms and will be responsible to promote coordination and interaction between Institutions of Armed Forces or establishments of the country. It will give opportunity of higher studies through distance learning to both military and civilian personnel. It will also give affiliation to defence training institutions to award degrees. The Institute will be headed by its President (who will be a three star serving General / equivalent officer with C-in-C status on appointment) and the Vice-President will be a civilian. The University is being planned on the lines of IIT/IIMs. The students of the University will constitute 66 percent students from armed forces and remaining 33 percent would be drawn from other government agencies, police and civilian. The teaching faculty will comprise of both military personnel and civilians in the ratio of 1:1.

President Robert Mugabe signed Zimbabwe's New Constitution into Law

President Robert Mugabe on 22 May 2013 signed Zimbabwe's new constitution into law, clearing


the path to crucial elections later this year. The constitution was unopposed through both houses of parliament. The new constitution was approved overwhelmingly in a referendum in March 2013. The features of new constitution are as following: The constitution cut short the powers of the president, limits presidential tenures to two fiveyear terms and does away with the post of prime minister. However, it does not apply retroactively so the 89-year-old Mugabe could technically extend his three decades in office by another 10 years. A new constitution is one of the pre-conditions for elections to pick a successor to the powersharing government Mugabe formed four years ago with Tsvangirai. The date for the elections is yet to be announced. Mugabe has ruled Zimbabwe since 1980 when the country gained independence from Britain. His regime has been tainted by allegations of rights abuses against his opponents and critics. Mugabe and Tsvangirai formed a power-sharing government in 2009 to avoid the conflict following a bloody and violent Presidential run-off election in 2008. The power-sharing government faced difficulties frequently over the allocations of key government posts, the implementation of key reforms and incidents of violence. The five-year coalition parliament was formed under the same power sharing agreement. It expires on 29 June 2013, and parliamentary and presidential elections have to take place within 90 days of that date. Mugabe and his allies want the elections as early as possible, while Tsvangirai insists on the application of reforms for ensuring a free and fair election.

A New Variety of Mango was named Nirbhaya after Delhi Rape Victim
A new variety of mango, harvested at Uttar Pradesh's famous mango centre Malihabad, was named Nirbhaya after the 23-year-old Delhi girl who was brutally gang-raped on 16 December 2012 and died of her injuries two weeks later. The new variety is a way of honouring the bravery and spirit of the young physiotherapist, whose rape and death galvanized the entire nation.

Government sanctioned 100 Crore Rupees under UIDSSMT to Develop MP Towns

Union Urban Development Ministry on 22 May 2013 sanctioned 100 crore rupees under Urban Infrastructure Development Scheme for Small and Medium Towns-UIDSSMT for development of small and medium towns of Madhya Pradesh. This scheme aims at improvement in urban infrastructure in towns and cities in a planned manner. The ministry also sanctioned 195 rupees crore rupees for the state under Jawaharlal Nehru National Urban Renewal Mission (JNNRUM).

24-MAY-2013 Union Cabinet of India Approved to Classify Malayalam as the Classical Language
The Union Cabinet of India, on 23 May 2013 approved to classify Malayalam as the Classical Language. Earlier, the Government of India had notified Kannada, Tamil and Telugu as the classical languages. The benefits that are enjoyed by the Classical Languages include: Two major annual international awards for scholars of eminence in classical Indian languages A Centre of Excellence for Studies in Classical Languages will be established The University Grants Commission will be requested to create and start with at least in the Central Universities, a certain number of Professional Chairs for Classical Languages for scholars of eminence in classical Indian languages A request for declaration of Malayalam as the Classical Language was started by the Kerala government as well as certain other organisations. These requests were then referred to Sahitya Akademi and were also discussed by Committee of Linguistic Experts. A meeting of Committee of Linguistic Experts was held in January 2011. The members suggested that this committee should be reconstituted. Eventually, new panel of the committee was constituted and a decision was finalised.

Government approved Special Recruitment Drive to Fill Backlog Vacancies for SC, ST & OBCs 114

The Union Cabinet of India on 23 May 2013 approved the Special Recruitment Drive to fill the backlog in reserved vacancies of Scheduled Castes (SC), Scheduled Tribes (ST) and Other Backward Classes (OBC). The decision to bring the special recruitment drive into effect was chaired by Prime Minister of India, Manmohan Singh at New Delhi. Under the recruitment drive of 75000 identified vacancies 48000 were filled in 2012 under the drive and the government wants to fill the remaining backlog by 2013. During the meet of the cabinet, different ministries and departments were made responsible to make concerted efforts to fill the remaining backlog of reserved vacancies.

Union Cabinet of India Approved the Creating 20751 Additional Posts in Income Tax Department
The Union Cabinet of India on 23 May 2013 approved the proposal for creating 20751 additional posts in the Income Tax Department in various cadres. This means that there will be 1349 additional posts in IRS cadre as well as 19402 additional posts in non-IRS cadres. The move will help the Income Tax Department in collection of more revenue, while at the same time providing better tax payers services. Apart from this, additional expenditure of 449.71 crore Rupees per annum will be incurred on creation of these posts as well as upgradation of the existing posts. This extra expenditure will be compensated by increased revenue, which will be over 25000 crore Rupees per annum.

Cabinet Committee Approved Proposal to Implement National AIDS Control Support Project
The Cabinet Committee on Economic Affairs on 23 May 2013 approved the proposal of Department of AIDS Control, Ministry of Health & Family Welfare for the implementation of National AIDS Control Support Project (NACSP) under the National AIDS Control Programme (NACP). The amount for this would be 2550 crore Rupees. The Government of India as well as the World Bank will finance the NACP in equal proportions. The benefits of project Strengthening Behaviour Change Communication (BCC) and demand generation Intensifying and consolidating prevention services with a focus on highly vulnerable populations, high risk groups and bridge population Institutional strengthening and financial management The project would also help in controlling the spread of HIV infection in India Objective of the project The main objective of the project is increasing the safe behaviour among high risk groups groups in pursuance of the national goal of accelerated reversal of the HIV epidemic by 2017. The focus of the activities of this project would be on strengthening as well as scaling up prevention interventions and related BCC strategies for sub-groups of population identified to be most-at-risk by the NACP. These vulnerable groups include Injecting Drug Users (IDU), Transgender (TG), Female Sex Workers (FSW) and Men who have sex with Men (MSM). The aim of the project is also to support the planned expansion and consolidation of tailored interventions for other at-risk populations which include migrant workers and truckers. The BCC strategies which are developed under this project will emphasis on demand generation for prevention services among high risk groups and vulnerable populations. This will have special focus on the youth. About National AIDS Control Programme (NACP) National AIDS Control Programme (NACP) in its third phase (2007-2012) saw remarkable success in controlling spread of HIV. As a result, India is on its track to meet the Millennium Development Goal (MDG) for HIV prevention and control. Over past 10 years, there has been reduction of 57 percent in the new HIV infections and 29 percent reduction in AIDS-related deaths.

The First and Only Satellite of Ecuador, Pegaso Collided With the Russian Space Debris
The only satellite of Ecuador, Pegaso (Pegasus) nanosatellite collided with the Russian space debris, the Ecuadorean space agency (EXA) announced on 23 May 2013. The Pegasus collided with the Russian rocket debris which was launched 30 years ago. The hit took place around 1000 miles above the east coast of Madagascar. Pegaso (Pegasus) nanosatellite was launched on 25 April 2013 in Jiuquan spaceport in China. It is important to note


that the only purpose of this satellite was nothing more than transmitting video images as well as sending morse code signals from the space. Russia will launch another satellite in July on behalf of Ecuador. This satellite is named Kryasor. Pegasus is the first and only satellite in the space from Ecuador. The US-based Joint Space Operations Center explained that the crash did not take place directly but there was a lateral collision with the particles of Russian rocket. US-based Joint Space Operations Center is responsible for monitoring all the artificial objects that orbit around the Earth. The Joint Space Operations Center keeps an eye on over 22000 objects which orbit the Earth. Out of these, 87 percent are debris and inactive satellites. It would still take 48 hours time duration to find out the damage by making use of radar. Pegasus is a nanosatellite which weighs merely 1.2 kg. It has been orbiting Earth at the height of 650 km and transmits pictures from the space.

Indian National Defence University to be Established at Binola, Gurgaon

Binola, Gurgaon: Indian National Defence University (INDU) is to be developed over here Foundation stone of Indian National Defence University (INDU) was laid down by the Prime Minister, Manmohan Singh at Binola, Gurgaon. INDU is Indias first defence university and will be an autonomous institution of national importance. The plan for the making of the Defence University came into existence following the recommendation of the review committee that was constituted after Kargil Conflict by the Union Government.

NASA to Lease Historic Launch Pad of First Moon Mission to Commercial Operators
National Aeronautics and Space Administration (NASA) is looking forward to lease out the historic launch pad in Florida that was used for the first moon mission and by the Atlantis Shuttle to commercial operators. The Launch complex of 39A at the Kennedy Space Centre in Cape Canaveral has not been in use since the retirement of Atlantis in 2011. NASA expects that at least two privately-owned space exploration companies can bid for the contract. The Launch Complex 39A is one of the two launch pads that was built during 1960s as part of the Apollo Moon Programme and has supported more than 90 launches since November 1967. NASA is looking forward to lease the Complex 39A because since 2011, after the end of NASAs space shuttle programme the facilities have not been in use. More than 150 facilities at Florida Spaceport has been demolished or transferred to commercial operators. NASAs commitment towards right-sizing its portfolio is based on reduction of the number of underused facilities or the facilities which are not required for Space Launch System and Orion. The Space Launch System and Orion is the next generation deep space mission of NASA and are designed for carrying the astronauts to destinations past the international space station.

Himachal Pradesh Assembly Celebrated Golden Jubilee; President to Address Special Session
The Himachal Pradesh assembly celebrated its Golden Jubilee on 24 May 2013. On the occasion, the President of India, Pranab Mukherjee will become the second president to address special session of HP assembly in Shimla. In the year 2004, the former President of India, APJ Abdul Kalam addressed the Himachal Pradesh assembly but during that time, the session of the state assembly was in progress. Himachal Pradesh assembly is nestled in the historic building known as Council Chambers. It is the same place where the central assembly during the British Raj was held as well as inaugurated by Lord Reading on 27 August 1925. Lord Reading was the then viceroy of India. The Speaker of the Himachal Pradesh assembly is Brij Bihari Lal Butail. Pranab Mukherjee will address the special session of the HP state assembly, after which he will go to Indian Institute of Advanced Studies (IIAS) where Rabindra Nath Tagore centre-cum-museum will be inaugurated.

Government of India reconstituted the Board of Governors of MCI

The Government of India reconstituted the Board of Governors of Medical Council of India (MCI) after the President of India; Pranab Mukherjee promulgated the Ordinance amending Indian Medical Council Act, 1956. Dr R K Srivastava was appointed as the new Chairman of the Board of Governors of Medical Council of India.


Effects of amendment in Indian Medical Council Act, 1956 The amendment in the Indian Medical Council Act, 1956 enables the Overseas Citizens of India to practice medicine in India. The amendment also removes the restriction on foreign doctors to practice only for teaching, research or charitable work. The amendment also provides for separate representation to Union Territories and more representation to Health Universities. The Indian Medical Council (Amendment) Bill, 2013 was promulgated as the Ordinance by the Government of India. It was introduced in Rajya Sabha during the Budget session. The term of the present Board of Governors of the Medical Council of India ended on 14 May 2013, but it has been given extension.

Carole King Became the First Woman to Receive Gershwin Prize

US singer-songwriter Carole King became the first woman to receive the Library of Congress Gershwin Prize for Popular Song. The President of America, Barack Obama conferred upon her, the Gershwin Prize that is given as a lifetime achievement in popular music. The award was given away at the White House in Washington. About Carole King Carole King is 71 years of age. She is known most popularly for her hit songs such as Aretha Franklin's (You Make Me Feel Like) A Natural Woman. Carole King has won the Grammy Award four times. She was the co-writer of her first number 1 hit song in 1960. The song was Will You Love Me Tomorrow which was recorded by The Shirelles. She became the first solo artist to sell over 10 million copies of a single album with 1971 release, Tapestry. About the Gershwin Prize The Library of Congress Gershwin Prize for Popular Song, also known as, Gershwin Prize is conferred upon the performer or composer for lifetime contribution to popular music. The award was created in 2007 by the Library of Congress. Gershwin Prize is named after brothers- George Gershwin and Ira Gershwin, both of whom contributed to popular music. First recipient of this award was Paul Simon. Other awardees of this prize are Stevie Wonder (2008) and Sir Paul McCartney (2009).

US Senate confirmed Srinivasan as top US Court Judge to the District of Columbia Circuit
The US Senate on 23 May 2013 approved Srikanth Srinivasan was as the most senior US Judge of the South Asian descent to the US Court of Appeals for the District of Columbia Circuit. The unanimous approval of Srinivasan gave birth to speculations that one day he may be tapped for the Supreme Court. Srinivasan born in Chandigarh, India and raised in Kansas is the first justice who has been confirmed to the Washington court since 2006 a year after Chief Justice John Roberts elevation created a vacancy. The senate confirmed his name to fill the vacancy created seven years ago by 97 votes in his favour. About Srikanth Srinivasan He is the Principle Deputy Solicitor General and defends the policies of US President Barack Obama before the Supreme Court Earlier he has also worked under the former President, George W. Bush He is a proud recipient of the Attorney Generals Award for Excellence in Furthering US National Security in 2003 He also won Office of the Secretary of Defence Award for Excellence in 2005 He is described as a trailblazer by the US President, Obama He is the first India-American to be appointed to the top American Court His nomination to the post for the first time was made by President, Barack Obama in June 2012, which was returned back to him on 2 January 2013 due to sine die adjournment of the senate. Obama re-nominated Srinivasan for the same position on 3 January 2013 In 1989, he received his BA with honours from Stanford University and in 1995 received his Juris Doctor (JD) in 1995 from Stanford Law School. He was elected to Order of the Coif and further served as the editor of the Stanford Law Review


Barack Obama Defended Use of Drones and called it Just War of Self Defence
Barack Obama, the President of United States of America, while outlining his future course of counter-terrorism policies on 23 May 2013 defended, the use of drones by calling it Just War of SelfDefence against the terrorists. While justifying the use of the unmanned armed aircrafts, drones the US President termed it as legal and a highly effective tool to target the high value terrorist hideouts. He also indicated that his administration will continue the use of drones as one of the key asset in its war against terrorism.

25-MAY-2013 Government has decided to Set Up Teacher Training Institutes at Block Level
The Union Government of India on 24 May 2013 announced that under the 12th Five Year Plan it will set up Institutes of Teacher Training at Block Level in 196 districts. The decision of the union Government will help in strengthening the teacher training capacity across the nation. The Government has decided to develop these institutes in SC/ST/Minority concentrated districts of the country. Under this program, a budget of more than 690 crore rupees has been approved for the project development and execution. One third of the total budget allocated will be invested in the high teacher deficit states namely Uttar Pradesh, Bihar, Chhattisgarh, Odisha, West Bengal, Assam, Jharkhand and Madhya Pradesh.

Report: Arctic Seas Acidifying at a Fast Pace due to Carbon Dioxide Emissions
A new report released in May 2013 claimed that the Arctic Seas are being made more acidic rapidly due to carbon dioxide emissions. Widespread changes in the ocean chemistry of the Arctic region were monitored by the scientists from the Arctic Monitoring and Assessment Programme (AMAP). As per the latest report released by the scientists, if the emissions of carbon dioxide are stopped with immediate effect at this point of time, then also it would take tens of thousands of years for Arctic Ocean chemistry to revert to pre-industrial levels. The scientists have forecasted the effects of the emission will bring in major changes in the marine ecosystem, but there exists an uncertainty over what kind of changes it will be, but will surely Impact the life of many marine creatures, including the commercially valuable fish. CO2 plays a great role in warming of the planet and it helps in making the alkaline water of the oceans more acidic after being absorbed from air. Cold water absorbs CO2 faster than compared to water at normal temperature. Thus the ice cold water of Arctic seas becomes more vulnerable. The recent decline of summer sea ice has also helped in exposing the sea surface to atmospheric CO2 to a greater extent. The researchers claim that the water of the Nordic Seas is acidifying to a wide range of depths. Effect of acidifying is faster at surface water than compared in deep waters. Mosaic of different levels of pH has been mapped by the researchers across the region that too based on the scale of change in the local intake of freshwater. A huge decrease of 0.02 per decade in the pH value has been monitored by the team of researchers on the Iceland and Barents seas since 1960s. The estimates made states that the average acidity of the surface ocean waters across the world is 30 percent higher by now, than that before the industrial revolution. Overall as per the scientists and researchers working on the conditions of sea water, it will be very early to predict the exact changes that the sea will witness over the times to come.

Scientists Solved the Mystery behind Bengal White Tigers

Scientists from Peking University, Beijing in May 2013 discovered that a change in single amino acid (A477V) in one pigmentation relate gene (SLC45A2) is the cause of white fur or sepia brown stripes in some tigers. The scientists studied 16 captive white tigers from three different parents to come up with the conclusion. As per the scientists, two types of melanin namely pheomelanin and eumelanin are used for identifying the color of fur, eye and stripes of the tiger. In case of the white tigers, pheomelanin that produces red and yellow color is affected. As per the research, the point mutation in the amino acid blocks a particular channel partially; as a result of this blockage yellow pigment forming process is affected. Same type of mutation in pigmentation-related gene (SLC45A2) causes light skin colour in modern Europeans as well as mouse, chicken and horse too. As per the study, human often force the tigers to inbreed for increasing the number of white


tigers in zoos. This type of forced inbreeding may create some health side effects in the tigers as it has been a reason of health ailments in humans. In tigers this forced inbreeding has resulted in human-induced inbreeding has resulted in premature death, stillbirth and deformities. White tigers are a part of the genetic diversity of the tigers, which is caused due to mutation and are worth conserving. The findings of the research was published in Thursday in the Current Biology journal. The study was conducted under the leadership of Shu Jin Lau of Peking University.

Dan Browns book Inferno irked Authorities of Manila

Book: Inferno by Dan Brown Inferno a novel written by Dan Brown in the third week of May 2013 came into attack by the Philippines authorities for its portrayal of Manila as - the gates of hell. In the novel Inferno, Brown has included a character a doctor, who describes Manila as a city of horrible traffic jams, poverty, child sex-trade and crime. In Inferno, the character described by Dan Brown states Ive run through the gates of hell about her experiences in Manila. Francis Tolentino, the Chairperson of the metropolitan Manila wrote a letter to Dan Brown and its publishers showcasing his disappointment regarding the inaccurate portrayal of the capital city and defining it for the terrible description of poverty and pollution. Dan Brown is the writer of the famous novel, Da Vinci Code, the book, whose film adaptation was banned from screening in Manila City in 2006 by stating it as an offensive act against Catholic Church. About Dan Brown Dan Brown is the author of number one bestselling novels like Da Vinci Code, The Lost Symbol, Angels & Demons, Deception Point and Digital Fortress. Da vinci Code was a novel that created a huge debate among the readers and scholars and renewed the interest of people in Leonardo da Vinci and the early history of Christianity. His novels are published in 52 languages around the world with 200 million copies in print. In 2005, Time Magazine named him among one of the top 100 most influential people in the world.

Ramdarash Mishra and Narendra Kohli awarded with Vyas Samman

Professor Ramdarash Mishra and Dr Narendra Kohli were conferred with the Vyas Samman on 23 May 2013 for the year 2011 and 2012 respectively. Professor Ramdarash Mishra (89) was honoured with the award for his collection of poems Aam ke Patte published in 2004. The collection of poems has tried to establish a relationship of man with ordinary objects like pen and table and has reminded their unnoticed importance in human life. Dr Narendra Kohli (73) was honoured for his historical novel Na Bhooto Na Bhavishyati published in 2004. The book has portrayed Swami Vivekananda, the culture of his time and his quest to be a sanyasi for National Unity. The award was presented by Professor Surya Prasad Dixit, a noted scholar of Hindi and the Chairman of the Selection Committee. About Vyas Samman Vyas Samman was instituted by the K.K. Birla Foundation in 1991 and is awarded annually in recognition of the hindi literary work published in past 10 years in genres like plays, novels, poetry, short stories, critiques and others. The award carries 2.5 lakh rupees and a citation and a plaque.

NSDF to offer Financial Assistance to Mary Kom Regional Boxing Foundation, Imphal
The Union Sports Ministry on 24 May 2013 gave its approval for a grant of 309.56 Lakhs rupees to Mary Kom Regional Boxing Foundation, Imphal for construction of gymnasium hall and procurement of gym equipments for the foundation. The grant will be disbursed from the National Sports Development Fund (NSDF). The grant will be released in installments on fulfillment of certain conditions that is required by NSDF Scheme. Mary Kom Regional Boxing Foundation is looking forward to create facilities at the new site allotted to it by the State Government of Manipur. Before this National Sports Development Fund released funds of 492 lakh rupees for Usha School of Athletics, Kozhikode, Kerala, for laying an 8 Lane Synthetic Track of international standard with supporting facilities.

United Nations released its Report on World Economic Situation and Prospects 2013
United Nations released its forecast report World Economic Situation and Prospects 2013 (Up-


date as of mid 2013) in the third week of May 2013. The latest Economic Forecast from United Nations (UN) projected that the global economic growth can gain a slow momentum for the rest of the year as a result of improved global financial conditions. The forecast has cleared that after a down-turn of over two years, it is expected that the global economic activity will gain momentum in the second half of 2013 and 2014 being backed by the accommodative monetary policies in the developing and developed economies. As per the forecast the moderate pick-up activity will be witnessed by the world but the growth will be seemingly below potential. The employment gains mainly in the developed economies will remain weak. The short term risks associated with the economic slowdown in the large developing nations, fiscal adjustments of US and the worsened situations of the Euro Area have gone down but havent diminished. The risks carries both the possibilities one is of returning back on a good track and the second one is of getting derailed the improving world economy. The forecast has put forward a light for the policy makers to look forward for a balanced global recovery with a focus on job creation to be prioritized. To mitigate the negative policy spillovers and to promote cooperation and curb protectionism, as per the forecast there exists a need of enhancing the International Policy Coordination as this will help in reforming the international financial system and ensuring sufficient resource flows in developing economies and in the third world nations.

Canadian Scientists:Neuron Growth cuts Memory Space

Canadian scientists discovered that the reason we struggle to recall memories from our early childhood is due to high levels of neuron production during the first years of life. The formation of new brain cells increases the capacity for learning but also clears the mind of old memories. The findings were presented to the Canadian Association of Neuroscience. Neurogenesis or the formation of new neurons in the hippocampus, a region of the brain known to be important for learning and remembering, reaches its peak before and after birth. It then declines steadily during childhood and adulthood. Scientists wanted to find out how the process of new neuron generation impacted on memory storage. They carried out their research on younger and older mice in the lab.

26-MAY-2013 Conference on Sports & Youth Affairs Concluded in New Delhi

The two day conference of Ministers of States/UTs in charge of Youth Affairs and Sports concluded in New Delhi on 25 may 2013.During the conference several new initiatives were discussed. The initiatives taken by Department of Youth Affairs were highlighted such as to reposition NSS as National Service and Skill Development Scheme (NSSDS) with a view to enable students to gain employable skills while undertaking community work that brings about social change. It was decided during the conference that Sports Authority of India (SAI) will set up 25 centres of excellence or COX across the country. Each COX will specialize in 3 to 4 sports disciplines. He requested the State Governments to provide free land and built up sports infrastructure for setting up of new centres of excellence in the states. He said the Government of India will set up two National Institutes - one for sports medicine and the other for sports coaching. A new programme of Sports Scholarships was declared under which up to 10 scholarships in different disciplines of sports science and sports medicine will be offered every year. Under the programme, the scholars can go to any reputed institute in the world and all their education and living expenses will be borne by Government of India. During the conference, a new initiative called Identification & Nurturing Sports Talent (INSTAL) was also discussed. Under the proposed Scheme, each district will have a special school meant for young sport persons in the age group of 6-10 years who have shown talent in sports. 100 talented young boys and girls in this age group will be selected through the PYKKA rural competitions. Such selected students will be admitted in the District Level Sports Schools with facilities of boarding, lodging, special diet, sports kit, school fees and other expenses being met by govt. through a stipend. There will be a guaranteed job under the sports quota to such selected students both in the Central Government or the State Government.

Tamil Playback Singer TM Soundararajan died in Chennai

Tamil playback singer T M Soundararajan died at his residence in Chennai on 25 May 2013 after a brief illness. He was 91 years old. He is survived by his wife and two sons. He had been awarded various honours including the Padmashri and the state governments Kalaimani. He hailed from Madurai. He was a playback singer for nearly four decades in Tamil cinema. He almost sang


for all the leading actors. He had rendered over 5000 cinema and devotional songs. He had last sung in the theme song of the world classical tamil conference in 2010, composed by AR Rahman. TMS also had sung devotional songs, especially on Lord Muruga, with his most famous 'Ullam uruguthayya' (The heart melts) instantly evoking devotion.

SC:Life Convict can't be released after spending 14 Years in Prison

The Supreme Court of India held that a life convict cannot claim to have a right to be released after spending 14 years behind the bars. A bench of P Sathasivam and J S Khehar ruled that life imprisonment means imprisonment for whole life and only the President and the Governors can remit the sentence and allow the convict to be released. The bench, however, stated that in those cases the government should take into account the gravity of offence while remitting the sentence. The court passed the order on a plea of a convict, who was awarded death sentence by trial court but was commuted into life imprisonment by Gauhati High Court, seeking direction to release him on the ground that he spent 14 years behind the bars. He was convicted in the rape-cum-murder case of a 22-year-old girl in 2000.

27-MAY-2013 Mumbai Indians Defeated Chennai Super Kings in Final to Lift its First IPL Trophy
In the final match of Indian Premier League 2013, Rohit Sharma led Mumbai Indians defeated Chennai Super Kings by 23 runs to lift the title for the very first time at Eden Gardens on 26 May 2013. Mumbai Indians decided to bat first and scored 148 runs for nine in 20 overs. On the other hand, in a chase of 148 runs, the Chennai Super Kings managed to score just 125 runs for nine in 20 overs. This was the first IPL trophy for Mumbai Indians. Earlier they had lost in the finals to the Chennai Super Kings in 2010. Chennai Super Kings, now have lost three times in the final, i.e., in the year 2008, 2012 and 2013. In the final match between MI and CSK on 26 May 2013, MS Dhoni was highest individual scorer of the match (63 not out for 45 balls). About Mumbai Indians Mumbai Indians is the franchise cricket team of Indian Premier League and it represents the Mumbai city. MI is one among the eight founding members of IPL in 2008. MI is owned by Reliance Industries through 100 percent subsidiary IndiaWin Sports. Previous IPL Winners The previous winners of the IPL are as follows: IPL Season 1: Rajasthan Royals IPL Season 2: Deccan Chargers IPL Season 3: Chennai Super Kings IPL Season 4: Chennai Super Kings IPL Season 5: Kolkata Knight Riders IPL Season 6: Mumbai Indians

Congress Party Convoy Attacked by Maoists at Dharba Valley in Chhattisgarh

Group of armed Maoists trapped and attacked the Congress party convoy at Dharba Valley in Chhattisgarh on 25 May 2013. In the attack, 17 people were killed on the spot as well as around 20 injured. Among the injured was former central Minister and senior Congress leader V.C. Shukla. The Maoists triggered the blasts with heavy Improvised Explosive Device (IED) on the road as well as opened fire in dense forested area of Darbha, which is situated around 40 km away from Jagdalpur district. There were approximately 100 Maoists that opened fire on the Congress convoy. The Maoists abducted Chhattisgarh Congress president Nand Kumar Patel along with his son. During the firing, Mahendra Karma, the Senior Congress leader and former leader of opposition as well as the former legislator Uday Mudaliar were killed.

Baleshwar Aggarwal, the veteran journalist passed away at 91

Baleshwar Aggarwal, the veteran journalist as well as the secretary general of Antar Rashtriya Sahyog Parishad (ARSP) died on 23 May 2013. He was 91 years of age. About Baleshwar Aggarwal


Baleshwar Agrawal was born on 17 July 1921 in Balasore, Odisha. He was the former Managing Editor of the Hindustan Samachar, the Hindi news agency. He held post of ARSP secretary general ever since it was incepted in 1978. He had close relations with the Non-Resident Indians.

UIDAI Inaugurated Three New Aadhaar-Enabled Services for Online Identity Authentication
Unique Identification Authority of India (UIDAI) on 25 May 2013 inaugurated three new Aadhaarenabled services- e-KYC, OTP (one time pin) authentication and Iris authentication, which would in turn help the residents of India in authenticating their identity anywhere and anytime via any digital platform. Apart from this, the UIDAI also announced establishing around 300 permanent enrolment centres, also called Aadhaar Kendras. By September 2013, number of Aadhaar Kendras will increase to around 1000. These centres would help those residents in enrolling which were left during the camps being organised by registrars in past. The centres will also help in facilitating biometric and demographic update. About e-KYC service Among the three services, e-KYC service will help the individuals in authorizing the service providers so that they can receive electronic copy of their identity proof along with the address. This particular service can be installed by various agencies for verifying the identity as well as address of the residents. Only the information such as Name, Address, Gender, Mobile Number, Date of Birth and Photograph, which is accumulated during enrolment of Aadhar, will be shared and that too with the permission or request of Aadhaar number holder. About OTP (one time pin) authentication The OTP service, on the other hand, allows Aadhaar based authentication of the residents by making use of the mobile phone anytime and anywhere. This can be done on the self service mode without making the use of biometric authentication device. Under this service, the digital platform of the authority will not share the demographic details, unlike e-KYC service. About Iris authentication Iris authentication will help the residents in authenticating the identity for availing this Aadhaarenabled service by facilitating the combination of Aadhaar number as well as the Iris image. Just like the OTP (one time pin) authentication, the authority will also not share the demographic details of the resident.

China commissioned Satellite Data Receiving Station

China in the month of May 2013 commissioned a satellite data receiving station meant to monitor the disputed South China Sea, where Beijing was involved in maritime disputes with a number of South East Asian countries. The satellite data receiving station was launched in the Chinas southern island province of Hainan by the Institute of Remote Sensing and Digital Earth under the Chinese Academy of Sciences. With the commissioning of station China will now be able to obtain satellite remote sensing data of the countrys southern territorial waters for civil use directly from its ground-based receiving facility. It is important here to note that the station has two sets of data receiving and transmission systems, getting information from more than 10 satellites. Also, a research centre based at the Sanya station was launched that is going conduct scientific research in disaster monitoring, marine sciences and of the environment.

Sachin Tendulkar Announced Retirement from Twenty20 Cricket Format

Sachin Tendulkar announced retirement from Twenty20 cricket format on 26 May 2013, immediately after Mumbai Indians beat Chennai Super Kings to lift the title of Pepsi Indian Premier League 2013 at Eden Gardens in Kolkata. This means that IPL Season 6 was the last IPL season played by Sachin Tendulkar. Some Important Facts Sachin Tendulkar was the captain of Mumbai Indians team in 2010. He has represented this franchise in 86 matches in all and finished with 2529 runs. These runs include one century and 14 half-centuries. Sachin Tendulkar played the last game for Mumbai against Sunrisers Hyderabad at Wankhede Stadium on 13 May 2013. He was injured thereafter.


Twenty20 cricket is the second format from which he announced his retirement. Earlier in December 2012, he had announced retirement from the One-Day Internationals. He also has the unbroken record of 15837 test runs as well as 18426 ODI runs.

Valuemart Gold and Jewels Launched Gold Coins with Sachin Tendulkars Face and Signature
The limited edition gold coins with Sachin Tendulkars face and signature engraved on them were launched on 13 May 2013 by Valuemart Gold and Jewels on the occasion of Akshaya Tritiya. About the limited edition gold coins A total number of one lakh limited edition Sachin Tendulkar gold coins were launched by Valuemart Gold and Jewels. Each coin weighs 10 grams. The price of each 24 karat gold coin is 34000 Rupees. The limited edition special gold coin can be had from as well as jewellery stores in India. Valuemart Gold and Jewels also additionally signed Sachin Tendulkar as the brand ambassador for time duration of three years in February 2013.

NASA's Observatory discovered Exotic Neutron Stars

Scientists from the NASA Obsevatory in the month of May 2013 have found that magnetars the dense remains of dead stars that erupt periodically with bursts of high-energy radiation may be more diverse and common than earlier considered. It is found that when a massive star runs out of fuel, its core collapses to form a neutron star, which is an ultra-dense object about 16 to 24 kilometres wide. The gravitational energy released in this process blows the outer layers away in a supernova explosion and leaves the neutron star behind. Most magnetars have extremely high magnetic fields on their surface that are ten to a thousand times stronger than for the average neutron star. As per the observations it was show that the magnetar known as SGR 0418+5729 (SGR 0418 for short) does not fit that pattern. It has a surface magnetic field similar to that of mainstream neutron stars. The researchers monitored SGR 0418 for over three years using Chandra, ESAs XMM-Newton as well as NASAs Swift and RXTE satellites. They were able to make an accurate estimate of the strength of the external magnetic field by measuring how its rotation speed changes during an X-ray outburst. These outbursts are likely caused by fractures in the crust of the neutron star precipitated by the buildup of stress in a relatively strong, wound-up magnetic field lurking just beneath the surface. What are Neutron Stars? A neutron star is a very small and dense star made up of almost completely of neutrons. It is a very large nucleus held together by gravity. It has a radius of about 10 kilometres (6 mi) and a mass from about 1.4 to 5 times the mass of the Sun. They are usually what is left of very big stars that have exploded (these are called supernovas). Some are what happen to white dwarfs (small stars) that have got a lot of extra mass.Neutron stars usually turn very fast, taking from 0.001 second up to 30 seconds to turn. Most neutron stars are spinning rapidly a few times a second but a small fraction have a relatively low spin rate of once every few seconds, while generating occasional large blasts of Xrays.

India and Saudi Arabia to further Strengthen Counter-terrorism Cooperation

India and Saudi Arabia on 26 May 2013 decided to further strengthen and deepen their counterterrorism cooperation. This was decided during the 4-day visit of External Affairs Minister Salman Khurshid to Saudi Arabia. The counter-terrorism issue is emerging as a key area of cooperation between India and Saudi Arabia. Saudi Arabia deported deported Abu Jundal, wanted in the 26/11 Mumbai terrorist attack about a year back. Saudi is concerned about the rise of extremism in the region, including in Pakistan, notwithstanding their close ties. Both nations discussed the menace of terrorism the world continues to face and agreed to further strengthen our counter-terrorism cooperation which is an essential element of the Riyadh Declaration signed in 2010.


India held talks with Saudi Arabia on a number of issues including the controversial 'Nitaqat' law, counter-terrorism measures and energy security. Saudi Arabia also tried to allay India's fears over the Nitaqat law and stated that the procedures are being taken in the best interest of Indian workers.The Nitaqat law and the ongoing drive to identify workers who are overstaying in the Arab Kingdom was one of the main area of focus during the talks held between the two nations. Khurshid's visit is the first by an Indian External Affairs Minister in the last five years to Saudi Arabia, India's biggest supplier of oil.

Global Index of Religion and Atheism Report: Number of Atheists Increased on Global Level
The new poll called Global Index of Religion and Atheism, by WIN/Gallup International which measures self-perceptions on the beliefs on global level, indicated that 13 percent of the world population identified themselves as atheists. Around half of the Chinese population comprised of non-believers. The poll indicated that in the United States, religiosity was declining notably. The 2012 Global Index of Religion and Atheism surveyed over 50000 people in 40 countries. These people were surveyed on categories- religious, non-religious and convinced atheists. Overall, the results declared that 59 percent of world population was religious, 23 percent was nonreligious and 13 percent was convinced atheist. China has maximum number of convinced atheists Maximum numbers of convinced atheists were found in China. Around 47 percent of Chinese population was convinced atheist. The reason for such a large population of China being atheist is attributed to the political history. The Republic Government of China was originally atheist during the formation in 1949. Error margin of the Global Index of Religion and Atheism was between 3 to 5 percent. Non-Religious population in India on the rise The Global Index of Religion and Atheism also revealed that non-religious population in India was rising considerably. In the survey conducted in 2005, 87 percent population had declared itself to be religious. This percentage fell to 81 percent in 2012. Also, there was 1 percent sink in the population of atheist in India. In 2005, there were 4 percent atheists in India, which sank to 3 percent in 2012. Global Trend Globally, similar kind of trend was observed. Overall, the Religiosity dropped down by 9 percent, while atheism increased by 3 percent. The Global Index of Religion and Atheism report revealed considerable decline in self-description of being religious. Pakistan saw an increase in number of religious population (6 percent). In Argentina (where the current Pope is present), there was a decrease of 8 percent in people believing in religion. South Africa saw a 19 percent dip in religious people. In US, there was a sink of 13 percent, while in Switzerland, France and Vietnam; there was a dip of 21 percent, 21 percent and 23 percent respectively. What is Global Index of Religion and Atheism? The WIN-Gallup International Religion and Atheism Index measures the global self-perceptions on beliefs. It is based on the interviews which were conducted with more than 50000 men as well as women from 57 countries across the world in 5 continents. This survey provided insight into the trend data of shifts in the attitude of people since 2005. WIN-Gallup International is the network of top most independent pollsters of the world. Global Religiosity and Atheism Index for 2012 Trend in Religiosity and Atheism Index Among Surveyed Countries Top 10 Atheist and Religious Populations

Punjab Government approved Policy to Check Exploitation of Ground Water

Punjab government in third week of May 2013 has approved a policy stipulating guidelines for the release of electric connections for agricultural pump sets in the state for 2013-14 to prevent exploitation of ground water. As per the Agriculture Power Tube Wells Policy, Punjab Electricity Regulatory Commission has prescribed the state government to decide on the number of agricultural pump set connections to be released each year for reasons of ecology, inadequate ground water potential and declining water table. For this a new policy guidelines have been formulated in the backdrop of state governments ambitious programme of crop diversification. Aims and Objective of policy


The policy aims to popularise drip/micro irrigation amongst farmers, especially the vegetable and fruit growers with a thrust on conservation of water. Reckless use of ground water has rendered 45 blocks in Punjab as over exploited blocks as revealed in the latest report of Central Ground Water Authority.

Defence Ministry inaugurated the First Fighter Aircraft base at Thanjavur

Defence Ministry on 27 May 2013 inaugurated the first fighter aircraft base at Thanjavur in southern India. Su-30MKI combat aircraft will be stationed here.Thanjavur airbase can be another strategically important airbase of the Indian Air Force. IAF can protect vast area of interests by stationing frontline fighter aircraft Sukhoi at Thanjavur. The setting up of the premier fighter base is important because of current geo-political scenario and threat perception in the Indian peninsula and in the Indian Ocean.

Union Govt to roll out 43000-cr Rupees Green Corridor for Renewable Energy
Union Government plans to roll out a 43000-crore rupees green energy corridor project to facilitate the flow of renewable energy into the national grid. The blueprint for the project has already been submitted to the Power Ministry by Power Grid Corporation of India Ltd (PGCIL). For implementation, the project would be split into intra- and inter-State. About Green Energy Corridor The green energy corridor is aimed at synchronising electricity produced from renewable sources, such as solar and wind, with conventional power stations in the grid. Germany has committed developmental and technical assistance of 1 billion Pounds for the project. The Government is aimed at strengthening the distribution network across the country making it smart to handle fluctuations after seeing the massive grid failure happening round the nation. As per the Central Electricity Authority, India has 27541.71 MW of installed renewable capacity excluding hydro power stations. The country has a total installed capacity of 223625.60 MW as on 30 April 2013. India is already in talks with Germany for making its grid compatible for distributing renewable energy. Germany has smart grids that integrate renewable energy into the national grid.

Madhya Pradesh Government hiked DA Allowance by Eight Percent

Madhya Pradesh government in the Month of May 2013 has hiked the dearness allowance of Employees by eight per which would be effective from 1 January 2013. The hike in dearness allowance was announced by Chief Minister Shivraj Singh Chouhan on 26 May 2013 while laying the foundation stone for several developmental projects worth 27.66 crore Rupees at Budha village in Mandsour district. Subsequent to the revised allowance, the state employees are now entitled to a total of 80 per cent DA along with their salaries.

28-MAY-2013 Planning Commission finalized 2000 Crore Nagaland Plan for 2013-14
The Annual Plan of 2000 crore rupees for the financial year 2013-14 was finalized for Nagaland on 27 May 2013 by the Planning Commission of India. The plan size was finalized in a meeting between the Deputy Chairman of Planning Commission, Montek Singh Ahluwalia and Chief Minister of Nagaland, Neiphiu Rio. During the 12th Five Year Plan, Nagaland is aimed to focus on development of the agricultural sector in the state as it carries a good potential of f006Coriculture and horticulture. To encourage growth of agriculture, the state needs better infrastructure and good connectivity via roads and in developing a better infrastructure (accelerating road construction), the planning commission will provide help to the state. In past few years, the state has performed well and the human development index of the state indicates that the growth achieved by the state was all inclusive. Achievement noticed by the Planning Commission Despite late start, difficult mountainous terrain, backwardness of the area, significant progress and development has taken place since Statehood.


Satisfactory progress has been made in construction of roads, village connectivity, primary/ middle/high/higher secondary schools, and health facilities In terms of Social Sector Development the state has male and female literacy rates of 83.29 percent and 76.69 percent as against national average of 82.14 percent and 65.46 percent respectively as per the latest census 2011 Gender gap in literacy is almost 6.60 percent in the State Overall literacy of Nagaland is 80.11 percent as against the national average of 74.04 percent in 2011 with Dropout Rate (DOR) at elementary level is 45.4 percent which is higher than the national average of 40.6 percent. Manufacturing sector of the state grew at 11.84 percent and registered sector grew at a rate of 34.16 percent. The Construction sector witnessed a growth of 11.38 percent and is fourth highest contributor at 13.33 percent of the GSDP. States Focus during 12th Plan The Chief Minister of Nagaland, Neiphiu Rio cleared that the state wants to be in tune with the National Approach. The state has planned to look forward towards an inclusive economic growth and will lay an emphasis on Agriculture and allied sector, Power, connectivity including Air, Surface and Railway, Human Resources Development including Skill Development, Development of Backward and Under Development Areas and planned Urban centers. The state has projected a growth rate of 10 percent during the 12th Plan period Growth forecast in the mining and quarrying sector is projected at 14.53 percent as the State intends to go in a full way to exploit the mineral resources. During the 11th Plan period the state achieved a growth rate if 7.44 percent with per capita income of 67430 rupees.

TRAI Released the Telecom Commercial Communications Customer Preference Regulations, 2013
The Telecom Regulatory Authority of India (TRAI) issued The Telecom Commercial Communications Customer Preference (Twelfth Amendment) Regulations, 2013 in the last week of May 2013. The Telecom Commercial Communications Customer Preference (Twelfth Amendment) Regulations, 2013 prescribes further measures to tighten the framework for controlling Unsolicited Commercial Communications (UCC). In the recent past too, TRAI issued various measures for curbing UCC. The Telecom Commercial Communications Customer Preference Regulations, 2010 was also issued on 1 December 2010 and came into force on 27 September 2011. In order to address the operational issues as well as for tightening the regulatory framework, various amendments have also been issued apart from various directions. Purpose of issuing The Telecom Commercial Communications Customer Preference (Twelfth Amendment) Regulations, 2013 The Telecom Commercial Communications Customer Preference (Twelfth Amendment) Regulations, 2013 has been issued to tighten the grip of regulatory framework, especially relating to commercial communication from subscribers indulging in telemarketing activities, deliberately masking themselves without registering as telemarketer with TRAI. The subscribers indulge in the activities like these without making payment of promotional SMS charge or the other kind of charges or deposits which should be paid by the registered telemarketers. These subscribers also evade the procedures for telemarketing by registered telemarketers. The subscribers like these indulge in sending unsolicited commercial communications to the customers who are even registered in NCPR. Features of the Regulation In case there is any valid UCC complaint, the originating Access provider will be liable to disconnect all the telecom resources allotted to such subscriber, after making necessary investigations. This provision will come into effect with immediate effect. The name as well as address of the subscriber like this will be entered into the blacklist for two years tenure and this record will be maintained separately for this purpose. Once the subscriber enters into the blacklist, all the Access Providers will disconnect the telecom resources provided by it to such subscriber within twenty four hours. This provision of the regulation will come into effect within one month from the publication of the regulation in Gazette. In order to settle the grievance of the subscriber whose connections are disconnected, the present redressal system will help.


Minister of Civil Aviation Appointed Five Part-Time Directors on Board of Air India
The Minister of Civil Aviation, Ajit Singh appointed five part-time Directors on Board of Air India in the Last week of May 2013. This has been done in order to use the specialised skills as well as suggestions of the Directors in order to achieve the targets which are set up by the Government of India in the Turn Around Plan and Financial Restructuring Plan for Air India. The five non-official part-time Directors appointed on the Board of Air India are: Gurucharan Das: He is a Graduate with Hon. from Harvard University in Philosophy and has worked as CEO of Procter & Gamble India. Prem Vrat: He is M.Tech. and Ph.D. and is presently working as Vice Chancellor and Professor of ITM University Gurgaon. Air Marshal (Retd.) K.K. Nohwar: He is a military aviator with more than 40 years of experience in the field of aviation. Ravindra H. Dholakia: He is Ph.D. in Economics and M.A. with distinction, Gold Medalist in Economics and Eco-Metrics. He is Professor in Economics and Public System of IIM, Ahmedabad. Renuka Ramnath: She holds a Bachelor Degree of Engineering and MBA with AMP from Harvard Business School. She is a founder, Managing Director and CEO of Multiples Alternate Asset Management which manages 400 million US dollar of Indian and international capital.

3rd National Sub-Junior Hockey: Odisha clinched Boy's Title

Odisha on 27 May 2013 clinched the boys title while Haryana won the girls championship at the third National Sub-Junior Hockey tournament. Odisha crushed Jharkhand, 8-0 while Haryana beat Madhya Pradesh, 3-2 in the finals played at Bhopal s Aishbagh stadium. The goal scorers for Haryana were Sonika (3 min), Ritu (35 min) and Navneet Kaur (49 min) while Karishma (4 min) and Neelu (24 min) scored goals for Madhya Pradesh. Earlier, Jharkhand defeated Chandigarh 2-1 to claim the third position in women category. In the men's category Punjab defeated Madhya Pradesh Hockey Academy 1-0 in a hard-fought match to get the third position. Punjab scored the winning goal in the 30th minute through a penalty corner converted by Arvinder Singh.

European Union lifted Arms Embargo on Syrian Rebels

European Union on 27 May 2013 lifted its arms embargo on the Syrian opposition, which has paved the way for individual EU member states to provide weapons to the Syrian rebels. After long and continuous hour of talk EU governments failed to agree on extending the arms embargo, which effectively ends the EU's ban on supplying arms to the rebels. The decision was actually taken under the persuasion of British Foreign Secretary William Hague whose country had pushed with France for a lifting of the arms embargo. Some other restrictive measures against Syria which include financing restrictions, travel bans and asset freezes is also supposed to be extended for a year, as there is a fear that the entire sanctions regime could fall over a failure to agree on the arms issue. Austria, Sweden, Finland and the Czech Republic are extremely reserved about pouring more arms into Syria, saying relaxing the arms embargo would only lead to more violence. It is important here to note that the regime of President Bashar al-Assad has been using extensive firepower against lightly armed rebel factions. As per the latest UN Figure around 94000 people have died since the uprising against Assad's regime which was erupted in March 2011.

RBI imposed Restrictions on Bank Loans against Gold

The Reserve Bank of India on 27 May 2013 imposed restrictions on banks and NBFCs for providing loans against gold coins as well as units of gold ETFs and mutual funds to curb demands for gold. Also banks were asked to ensure that the amount of loan to any customer against gold ornaments, gold jewellery and gold coins (weighing up to 50 grams) should be within the board approved limit. Banks are currently permitted to grant advances against gold ornaments and other jewellery and against specially minted gold coins sold by banks. However, no advances can be granted by banks for purchase of gold in any form, including primary gold, gold bullion, gold jewellery, gold coins, units of gold exchange traded funds and units of gold mutual funds. Government has taken several steps recently, including raising import duty, to curb the inbound shipments of gold. RBI too had put restrictions on banks on gold imports, which has led to forex outflow and widening of the Current Account Deficit. While there may not be any objection to grant of advances against specially minted gold coins sold by banks, there is a risk that some of these will weigh much more, thereby circumventing the


RBI's guidelines regarding restrictions on grant of advance against gold bullion. In a separate notification, RBI stated that no advances should be granted by NBFCs for purchase of gold in any form, including primary gold, gold bullion, gold jewellery, gold coins, units of gold ETF and units of gold Mutual Funds.

Lost Apollo 11 Moon Dust Discovered After 40 Years in California Lab

In a rare kind of discovery, various priceless vials of Moon dust which were gathered by one and only Apollo 11 by the late Neil Armstrong, and Buzz Aldrin were found after almost 40 years in the lab warehouse of California. Vials of the Moon Dust brought on Earth by Neil Armstrong and Buzz Aldrin were discovered in the month of April 2013 by an archivist, Karen Nelson in the Lawrence Berkeley National Laboratory, California. Apollo 11 returned from the historic flight in the year 1969. Neil Armstrong and Buzz Aldrin collected the lunar soil and brought to Earth, which was sent to around 150 laboratories across the world. One of these labs was Space Sciences Laboratory in Latimer Hall on the UC Berkeley campus. But, after experiments were done and publications of the papers, the lunar soil samples should have been sent to NASA but they were found in storage for over four decades. Karen Nelson discovered these samples of Moon Dust with handwritten labels which dated back to 24 July 1970.

Mali's Presidential Election to be held on 28 July 2013

Mali's Presidential election will be held on 28 July 2013, according to a draft law adopted by the cabinet as the nation struggles to move on from war and an 18-month political crisis. A cabinet communique marked the first official confirmation of the date of the poll, seen as essential to restoring democratic rule after a coup in 2012 paved the way for Islamist rebels to seize control of the north. Acting president Dioncounda Traore will not contest the polls. The new elected government will have the responsibility to take Mali out of a crisis that has crippled the country since a Tuareg rebellion for independence of the north in January 2012. France, Mali's former colonial power, sent in troops in January 2013 to block an advance by the Al-Qaedalinked rebels on the capital Bamako. The French-led offensive has pushed the militants out of the main cities and into desert and mountain hideouts from where they are staging guerrilla attacks. France meanwhile began withdrawing its 4500 troops deployed in Mali and handed over the reins to a 6300-strong force, the International Mission for Support to Mali (MISMA). France stated that about 1000 soldiers will remain in Mali beyond this year to back up a UN force of 12600 peacekeepers that is to replace MISMA gradually from July and will be responsible for stabilising the north. Deeply divided and poverty-stricken Mali is badly in need of help to repair the damage caused by the war and to offer some hope of bringing together its disparate political groups.

President of Afghanistan Hamid Karzai was on two days Visit to India from 20-22 May 2013
President of Afghanistan, Hamid Karzai, visited India from 20-22 May 2013 during which he was conferred with Doctoris Honoris Causa for Letters by the Lovely Professional University, Phagwara, Punjab, on 20 May 2013 and met Prime Minister and President separately on 21 May 2013. The visit of President Karzai was his third Visit to India in the last three years after Prime Minister Manmohan Singh's landmark visit to Afghanistan in May 2011 followed by his visits in October 2011 in which both the leaders signed the historic Strategic Partnership Agreement between the Afghanistan and India, and his subsequent State Visit to India in November 2012 which reinforced this partnership with a new business dimension. During the course of his visit President Karzai also met senior BJP leader, L.K. Advani and a delegation of CEOs from the CII among others while in Delhi. Earlier, in May 2012 the Partnership Council headed by the Foreign Ministers of Afghanistan and India met in Delhi in May 2012 to review and advance this relationship. This was followed by the Delhi Investment Summit organized by the Confederation of Indian Industry in June 2012 just before the Tokyo Conference on Afghanistan where the international community pledged continued development support for Afghanistan post 2014 under the Tokyo Mutual Accountability Framework. Highlights of the Visit


The visit of President Karzai was to enhance the strategic partnership between the two countries which have historic and civilizational ties going back several decades. As Afghanistan is moving towards its critical security, political and economic transitions marked by the drawdown of NATO forces and the Presidential elections in 2014, the strategic partnership between Afghanistan and India is supposed to play an important/crucial role in providing security and stability to Afghanistan. India is ready to stand by Afghanistan as close, friendly and historic neighbour through these transitions and play a due and responsible role in this regard. President Karzai's visit was a chance to review the status of ongoing Indian-assisted development projects in and for Afghanistan. President Karzai paid effusive tribute to India's development assistance for Afghanistan at his address in Lovely Professional University, Punjab highlighting role that India was playing in educating Afghanistan's youth in Indian universities. From the last few weeks in the month of May 2013, S. Ramadorai, Vice President of Tata Consultancy Services and M.S. Swaminathan, founder of the M.S. Swaminathan Foundation and Chairman of a Task Force constituted to establish the National Agricultural University of Afghanistan, have visited Kabul separately to explore the prospects of Indian investments in skill-building in Afghanistan and the Afghan economy and help realize the potential of Afghanistan's agricultural development respectively, areas where Indian industry and expertise can contribute. The development of work on the Salma Dam and the new Parliament building was also reviewed. It was agreed to speed up and complete the work on the new Parliament building in the first half of the year.

Australia ranked as the World's Happiest Developed Nation

Australia on 27 May 2013 was ranked as the world's happiest nation among developed economies for the third consecutive year as per the Better Life Index compiled by the Organization for Economic Cooperation and Development. Sweden, Canada, Norway and Switzerland ranked second, third, fourth and fifth position respectively. The survey ranked more than 30 countries on criteria like income levels, health, safety and housing. Highlights of the Survey More than 73 percent of Australia's 23 million people aged 15 to 64 hold a paid job, which is above the OECD average. Life expectancy at birth is also higher, at almost 82 years. Australia's economy registered more than two decades of straight growth due to demand for its natural resources. It also managed to overcome the worst of the financial crisis and was the only major developed nation to avoid the global recession in 2009. The Australian dollar is currently trading close to 30 year highs. However, Australia is facing challenge in the form of a widening income gap. According to the OECD, the top 20 percent of Australia's population earn six times more than the bottom 20 percent.

Delhi Police Issued Notification to Curb Sale and Use of Ammonium Nitrate
Delhi Police issued a notification in the last week of May 2013 declaring a curb on the sale as well as use of ammonium nitrate. It is important to note that ammonium nitrate comes under the special category of substances under the Explosive Substances Act. Delhi Police, in its notification, declared that the traders should apply for the licence by 31 May 2013 in case they want to sell or use the substance. This will be followed by crackdown in order to identify as well as punish the illegal sellers of ammonium nitrate. Features of the Notification Issued by Delhi Police All the traders need to apply for licence latest by 31 May 2013 for legally selling Ammonium Nitrate. Clinics, schools, laboratories, colleges as well as hospitals will be allowed to keep only less than 5 kg of Ammonium Nitrate. However, the area SHO needs to be informed about this possession of the substance. In case of violation of this rule, maximum punishment would be life term. The buyer of Ammonium Nitrate will have to provide his/her identity as well as purpose of purchasing it. These details will be recorded and cross-checked. The move was initiated by the additional commissioner of police (licensing) Madhup Tiwari in light of blasts which took place in Delhi high court as well as Bangalore BJP headquarters where traces of certain chemicals were found in explosives. In Hyderabad twin blasts in 2007, Ammonium Nitrate based Neogel 90 was used.


66th Cannes Film Festival: Blue is the Warmest Colour won Prestigious Palme d'Or award
Blue is the Warmest Colour (La Vie D'Adle Chapitres 1 et 2) which is directed by FrenchTunisian filmmaker Abdellatif Kechiche won the top honour - the Palme d'Or - at the 66th Cannes Film Festival. The awards were decided after reviewing 20 films in competition by a nine-member jury led by US filmmaker Steven Spielberg, joined by Australian actress Nicole Kidman and Oscar-winning director Ang Lee among others. The film is a three-hour love story based on a graphic novel by Julie Maroh starring Adele Exarchopoulos and Lea Seydoux. It is basically a story about a teenage girl who falls in love with a slightly older woman. Overall, the movie is about sexual awakening, heartbreak, and self-discovery. With this the runner-up award, the Grand Prix, went to Inside Llewyn Davis which is directed by the Coen brothers. It is important here to note that the Coen brothers had won the Palme d'Or in 1991. Also, the Jury Prize went to Japanese director Hirokazu Kore-Eda for Like Father, Like Son. Some other Important Awards Mexico's Amat Escalante won the best director prize for his film Heli. Hollywood veteran actor Bruce Dern took the best actor prize for his performance in Nebraska. Argentine-born Frenchwoman Berenice Bejo was awarded the best actress prize for her role in The Past.

Solar Impulse Plane HB-SIA set a new Distance Record

The Solar Impulse plane HB-SIA set a new distance record for solar-powered flight on the second leg of its trans-American journey on 22 May 2013. The craft landed in Dallas, Texas, after an 18hour flight and a journey of 1541 km from Phoenix to Arizona. In the coming weeks, the craft will make a stop-over at St Louis, Missouri, and Washington DC before heading to New York in early July. The objective of this project named as Across America is to showcase the capabilities of renewable energy. The Across America is termed as the first crosscontinental, solar powered flight. The Solar Impulse HB-SIA has the same wingspan as an Airbus A340. The plane's wing and stabiliser are covered with approximately 12000 solar cells, which drive its four propellers and charge the plane's 400kg of lithium-ion batteries for night-time flying.

Chile and Argentina Issued Red Alert in Wake of Copahue Volcano Eruption
Authorities in Argentina and Chile ordered evacuation of around 3000 people that live in proximity with Copahue volcano, situated in south of Argentina-Chile border. The authorities declared that the Copahue volcano is on the verge of eruption any time. The Copahue volcano is situated at a height of 2965 m or around 10000 feet and sits in Andes cordillera. It has just spewed gases. In this area, various light earth tremors were registered as well. The red alert was issued after the activities of this volcano were monitored and it was found that seismic activities of the volcano increased. The Emergency Office of Chile declared that the evacuation will have an adverse effect on around 460 families that live within 15 miles radius of this volcano. Earlier, Argentinas authorities had declared yellow alert, but it was revised to higher level later. Copahue volcano is one of the most active volcanoes in that region which spews gas and ash along with smoke that rises to around 1.5 km in sky.

Bill Pertwee, the Warden Hodges of Dad's Army died at 86

William Desmond Anthony Bill Pertwee, popular for enacting Warden Hodges in Dad's Army died on 27 May 2013 at Royal Cornwall Hospital, Truro, Cornwall, England. He was 86 years of age. About Bill Pertwee Bill Pertwee was born in Amersham, Buckinghamshire. He lived in Wadebridge, Cornwall. He is popularly known for playing Warden Hodges in Dad's Army. At first, he played the warden in Dad's Army in the year 1968. The show also fetched Bafta for best comedy in the year 1971. He was the founder member as well as the president of Dad's Army Appreciation Society. He was also made an MBE in the year 2006 for charity services to children's hospices. Other popular credits of Bill Pertwee included Carry on Girls, Carry on Loving and Carry On at Your Convenience. Dads Army is the British sitcom in context with Home Guard during the Second World War. Dads Army was authored by Jimmy Perry and David Croft. It was broadcasted on BBC between 1968


and 1977.

Quarterly Report (Jan-Mar 2013) on Public Debt Management Released

Quarterly Report on Public Debt Management for the Quarter January-March 2013 was released by the Union Finance ministry on 28 may 2013. For Fiscal Year 2012-13 (FY13), Gross and Net Market Borrowings were higher than previous year by 9.4 per cent and 7.1 per cent respectively. Auctions during Q4 of Fiscal Year 13 were held in accordance with the pre-announced calendar apart from the cancellation of one auction 12000 crore rupees scheduled in February 2013. The weighted average maturity of dated securities issued during fourth quarter of Financial Year 2013 at 13.50 years was higher than 13.38 years in the previous quarter while weighted average yield (cut-off) of issuance during the quarter declined to 7.95 per cent from 8.26 per cent in third quarter. Weighted average yield of issuance during Fiscal Year 2013 at 8.36 per cent was lower than 8.52 per cent in the previous fiscal year, while weighted average maturity at 13.50 years was higher than 12.7 years in Financial Year 2012. The cash position of the Government during fourth quarter was comfortable and remained in surplus mode during the quarter. The total public debt (excluding liabilities under the Public Account) of the Government at endMarch 2013 increased on a quarter-on-quarter (QoQ) basis by 0.4 per cent (provisional) compared with an increase of 4.0 per cent in the previous quarter (Q3 of FY13). Internal debt constituted 91.1 per cent of public debt and marketable dated securities accounted for 75.0 per cent of total public debt. About 31 per cent of outstanding dated securities have a residual maturity of up to 5 years, which implies that over the next five years, on an average, slightly more than 6.0 per cent of outstanding stock needs to be rolled over every year. In the secondary market, bond yields eased during the quarter due to policy easing by a total of 50 bps as well as OMO purchases by RBI, decline in inflation rate, slowdown in GDP growth rate and reduced supply of securities. Trading volumes increased significantly during the quarter driven by falling yields. Outright transactions during Fiscal Year 2013 increased by 89.0 per cent over Fiscal Year 2012.The annualised outright turnover ratio for Central Government dated securities for fourth quarter of Fiscal year 2013 went-up to 6.0 from 3.2 during the previous quarter.

Ram Jethmalani expelled by BJP Party from Primary Membership for Six years
The Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) on 28 May 2013 expelled senior lawyer and MP Ram Jethmalani from the primary membership of party for six years over breach of discipline. In a letter to Jethmalani, BJP general secretary Ananth Kumar on 28 May 2013 asserted that the partys parliamentary board had taken an undisputed decision to expel him from membership of the party. Some of the facts Responsible for his expulsion Ram Jethmalani had criticised senior party leaders Sushma Swaraj and Arun Jaitley for their complete ignorance of relevant facts for opposing the appointment of the new CBI director. Earlier, he had also demanded the resignation of party president Nitin Gadkari following charges of corruption. In November 2012, just a day after he questioned his party's stand on the appointment of the new CBI director, the BJP had suspended Ram Jethmalani from the party with immediate effect.

World Hunger Day was observed on 28 May 2013

28 May 2013: World Hunger Day World Hunger Day was observed on 28 May 2013 across the globe. It is an annual event which celebrates sustainable solutions to ending extreme hunger and poverty. The day seeks to inspire people in both the developed and developing worlds to show their solidarity and support to enable many more to end their own hunger and poverty and make the journey to self-reliance. 870 million, one eighth of the worlds population live in extreme hunger and poverty and exist on less than 80 pence a day. Hunger kills more people than AIDS, malaria and tuberculosis combined. Millions of women, men and children die each year because of chronic persistent hunger Two million are children. Even today, the 90 percent majority of those suffering with hunger and poverty are living in other parts of the world, not affected by famine, earthquake or flood, but because of the chronic persistent hunger that exists in the developing world, in particular, Africa, South Asia and Latin America.


Researchers Revived Centuries-Old Frozen Plants Called Bryophytes from Teardrop Glacier
Researchers at the University of Alberta announced that the plants which were frozen centuries ago were sprouting with new growth. Samples of the bryophytes, 400-year-old plants bloomed under certain laboratory conditions. Researchers declared that this reflected the recovery of ecosystems from the cyclic long periods of ice coverage of the Earth. The group of researchers was making exploration in area around the Teardrop Glacier which is situated in Canadian Arctic. This regions glaciers are receding at a rapid pace (around 3-4 m annually) since 2004. This is also the place where it is said that the light of daytime has not reached since Little Ice Age, the widespread cooling which took place from 1550 AD to 1850 AD. The lead author of the study, Catherine La Farge explained that huge populations of bryophytes were observed from beneath the glacier which reflected a greenish tinge. Bryophytes are very different from land plants. These plants do not have any vascular tissue. This means that these plants can survive without drying up even in the long Arctic winters. Eventually, these plants grow in warmer times. The researchers observed new growth of the green lateral branches on the stems of the plant. A lot of other species were observed in the Teardrop Glacier and almost all these are completely unknown to science.

Ananya Gupta won a Bronze Medal in World School Chess Championship

Nine-year-old Mumbai girl Ananya Gupta claimed a bronze medal in the World School Chess championship held at Haldikki in Greece. She won seven out of nine games to bag the bronze in the tournament. It was held from 6 May to 15 May 2013. Ananya created waves by beating the much higher ranked Yvonne Beline of France on way to finishing third in the competition. Earlier, she clinched gold at the 9th Singapore Chess Festival. Ananya, had clinched gold at the 9th Singapore Chess Festival earlier. Ananya is a product of South Mumbai Chess Academy (SMCA).

Union Defence Minister AK Antony dedicated New Air Force Station at Thanjavur to Nation
Union Defence Minister AK Antony on 27 May 2013 dedicated to the nation the New Air Force Station at Thanjavur at a brief function held to mark the occasion. The operationalisation of the Air Force Station, Thanjavur is directed towards strengthening the air defence capabilities of the Indian Air Force in general and the Southern Command, in particular. The Station will play a vital role in protecting the various sensitive, strategic, industrial, aerospace and economic assets coming up in the Southern Peninsula the Station will also help protect our island territories and Sea Lines of Communication in the Indian Ocean Region (IOR). In the emerging security scenario, the presence of Fighter Planes in Thanjavur helps in guarding our interests and also giving a feeling of safety to our neighbours. About Thanjavur Airbase The Thanjavur airbase was first constructed in 1940 by the Royal Air Force. During the period 1942-45, 36 Sqn, 353 Sqn and 60 Sqn of RAF operated from this airfield with Hudson, Wellington 1C, Hurricane and Thunderbolt aircraft. These aircraft were used in various roles which included fighter operations, air transport, anti- shipping and anti-submarine patrol. After independence, the airfield was handed over to the Airports Authority of India and Vayudoot operations were undertaken from this base. Thanjavur airbase is poised to become a premier airbase in Southern Air Command. The status of the airbase as the pride of Southern Air Command befits the city of Thanjavur, which was a jewel in the crown of the Chola and Pandya Kingdoms.

Samsung launched Galaxy Mega in India Priced at 25100 Rupees

The Korean electronics company, Samsung on 28 may 2013launched a new handset model Samsung GALAXY Mega in Indian market. The GALAXY Mega will be available in two variants, with a price range of 25100 and 31490 rupees respectively. Specifications of the GALAXY Mega It is Powered by Android Jelly bean 4.2 (rpt) 4.2 operating system with a dual core processor,


It has has a 8 mega-pixel rear camera and a 1.9 megapixel front camera and comes with upto 64 GB expandable memory. It is very light and thin for incredible portability and is easy to use. The company is also retailing the GALAXY Mega with a special offer from Reliance and Vodafone. The company has been expanding its service network continuously. It is important here to note that Samsung India currently holds 47.4 per cent market share in smartphone market while it is 43.8 (RPT) 43.8 per cent in overall mobile phone market. On sales of its latest handset Samsung GALAXY S4,the company had sold 10 million units worldwide.

29-MAY-2013 Kushal Singh Appointed as the Chairperson of NCPCR

The Ministry of Women and Child Development appointed Kushal Singh as the Chairperson of National Commission for Protection of Child Rights (NCPCR). She was selected by the Committee which was headed by Krishna Tirath, Minister of Women and Child Development. About Kushal Singh Kushal Singh held various high level posts in the Central Government as well as the Government of Rajasthan. She was the Chief Secretary of the Government of Rajasthan. She also held the post of the Chairperson Board of Revenue, Rajasthan Pollution Control Board and the Commissioner for Disabled Persons, Government of Rajasthan. Kushal Singh was the Secretary Women and Child Development and Social Welfare, Principal Secretary for various ministries such as Social Welfare and Tribal Area Development, Environment and Social Security, Government of Rajasthan. She has also served as the Senior Directing Staff (Civil Services), National Defence College, Ministry of Defence. Apart from this, she has remained the Regional Cement Controller at Bombay for the Ministry of Textiles, Government of India.

Indian Telecom Sector Became the Second Largest Telephone Network in the World
The Indian telecom sector became the second largest telephone network in the world, after China by registering exceptional growth during last nine years. The reasons for growth of telecom sector were reform measures by the Government of India, active participation of the private sector as well as wireless technology. National Telecom Policy-2012 (NTP-2012) was announced with an objective to maximise public good by facilitating reliable, secure and affordable telecommunication as well as broadband services in India. When NTP 2012 was implemented, a range of telephonic connections increased considerably. The telephone connections in India till January 2013 were 893.14 million. The rural telephone connections increased by around 10 million in the year 2012. Overall, the teledensity was 73.07 percent till January 2013. Rural teledensity crossed the 40 percent mark. Comparatively, in March 2004, the overall teledensity was 7.04 percent while the rural teledensity was 1.7 percent. In case of mobile penetration, the preference of the use of wireless telephony increased considerably. As on 31 March 2012, the wireless telephones increased from 96.62 percent to 96.74 percent by June end 2012. The share of landline phones increased from 3.38 percent to 3.44 percent from April to December 2012. The wireless subscriber base also increased from 33.6 million in March 2004 to 864.72 million till December 2012. The average tariff for every outgoing call per minute for GSM services went down from 2.89 Rupees in March 2004 to 47 paisa in December 2012.

Jamjang Deru of India Bagged Three Medals in 15th Asian Youth Weightlifting Championships
Jamjang Deru of Arunachal Pradesh, India won three medals, which included two gold and one silver, on 28 May 2013, the opening day of 15th Asian Youth Weightlifting Championships in Doha. He won the medals in the boy's 50kg category. Jamjang Deru won a silver with 87 kg and bagged a gold with 113 kg lift. Finally, he signed off with the gold with a total of 200 kg. It is worth noticing that Jamjang Deru had also secured a fourth position at the IWF Youth World Championships at Tashkent in April 2013 with an overall lift of 195 kilograms. These were the 15th Asian Youth Weightlifting Championships.


ISRO Navigation Centre Inaugurated by V. Narayanasamy near Bengaluru

V. Narayanasamy, the Minister of State in the Prime Ministers Office, Ministry of Personnel, Public Grievances and Pensions, Bengaluru, inaugurated ISRO Navigation Centre (INC), established at Indian Deep Space Network (IDSN) complex at Byalalu, about 40 km from Bangalore on 28 May 2013. The ISRO Navigation Centre (INC) is the important element of Indian Regional Navigation Satellite System (IRNSS), which is an independent navigation satellite system developed by India. At the inauguration event, V. Narayanasamy also gave the awards instituted by Astronautical Society of India (ASI) and ISRO. Role of ISRO Navigation Centre (INC) The ISRO Navigation Centre (INC) will remain the focal point of critical operations of IRNSS. The INC is responsible for providing the time reference, generation of navigation messages and monitoring and control of ground facilities which include ranging stations of IRNSS. INC will also host various technical facilities for supporting various navigation functions. The data from overall network of twenty one ranging stations of IRNSS will be sent to the data processing facility at INC where it will be processed to generate the navigation messages. The navigation messages in turn will be transmitted from INC to IRNSS satellites through the spacecraft control facility at Hassan. INC is also connected to ranging stations as well as the satellite control facilities through two highly reliable dedicated communication networks which consist of satellite and terrestrial links. The host of network of satellite communication links is INC. About Indian Regional Navigation Satellite System (IRNSS) Indian Regional Navigation Satellite System (IRNSS) will have a total of seven satellites network and it will enable the users in determining the location as well as time accurately. All these satellites will be positioned in the geostationary and inclined geosynchronous orbits 36000 km above the surface of the Earth. The coverage of IRNSS will extend all over India and its neighbourhood. All the IRNSS satellites are equipped with high precision atomic clocks and continuously transmit navigation signals to users. IRNSS will have an overall network of twenty one ranging stations geographically distributed in India. These stations will facilitate data for orbit determination of IRNSS satellites and monitoring of the navigation signals.

Meghalaya Plan for 2013-14 Finalised at 4151 Crore Rupees

The Annual Plan for the year 2013-14 for the state of Meghalaya was finalised on 28 May 2013 at a meeting between Deputy Chairman, Planning Commission, Montek Singh Ahluwalia and Chief Minister of Meghalaya, Mukul Sangma. The plan size has been agreed at 4151 crore rupees. The state was advised during the meeting to undertake academic and governance reforms in the higher education system. Also the details regarding the enrolment in public and private institutions, investment in private sector and any initiative on PPP mode needs to be provided. The state may prepare a comprehensive strategic plan indicating the measures and interventions for development of higher education and consolidation of existing institutions in the state. The State Government was suggested by the Planning Commission to take necessary policy initiatives for further strengthening industry sector. Effort should also be made to fully exploit immense tourism and art and craft potential. Planning Commission also advised the State Government to make full use of Science and Technology in improving pace of development. State should also encourage public private partnership in all sectors of economy. The State should provide special focus on the integrated water resources management, basin planning, water quality, monitoring and management.

Punjab Government approved Online Lottery System to Increase Revenue

Punjab government on 28 May 2013 gave its approval for starting an online lottery system in order to increase revenues of the state. Functioning of the Online Lottery System The online lottery system would be conducted, operated and regulated as per provisions of the Lottery Regulation Act, 1998 and the Punjab State Lotteries Rules, 1998. The online system ideates offering lottery games through a network of computer terminals and with some devices that may be approved by the government to be installed at retail locations. The terminals would be connected to a main data centre at a central headquarter. A distributor or a selling agent would be appointed by the government who is supposed to design


procure, install and commission, operate and maintain, promote and market and carry out other activities to be required for managing the online lottery. The selection of the distributor or the selling agent would be done through tenders and a monitoring committee.

BCCI constituted 3-Man Probe Panel to probe IPL Betting

The Board of Control for Cricket in India (BCCI) on 29 May 2013 constituted a three-man inquiry commission to probe the allegations against Gurunath Meiyappan and the three Rajasthan Royals players, who were arrested on charges of betting in the IPL-6 matches. The Commission will be initiating the adjudication proceedings at the earliest. The committee consisting of Former Judge of the Karnataka and Tamil Nadu High Courts Justice T. Jayaram Chouta, Former Judge of the Tamil Nadu High Court Justice R Balasubramanian, and Secretary of BCCI Sanjay Jagdale. They will probe charges against M Gurunath, former Team Principal of Chennai Super Kings, as well as the three Rajasthan Royals cricketers who were arrested for alleged spot-fixing. The committee will also probe India Cements Ltd. the owner of the Chennai Super Kings Franchise and Jaipur IPL Pvt. Ltd. the owner of the Rajasthan Royals Franchise.

The 45-day Fishing Ban came to an End in Tamil Nadu

The 45-day fishing ban was imposed from 15 April 2013 in the Eastern coast of Tamil Nadu to ensure unhindered breeding of fish. The fishing ban coming to an end on 29 may 2013. The fishermen of Nagapattinam, Rameswaram, Thoothukudi are ready for fishing. The fishermen will venture out into the sea with their equipments. The district administration warned the fishermen not to venture out of the international maritime border line to avoid confrontation with Sri Lankan Navy. The fishermen were also warned against using banned fishing nets which will destroy the sea wealth. The governments of Tamil Nadu and Puduchery had imposed the ban under provisions of the Deep sea Fishing Regulation Act, 2001. Every year, between 15 April 2013 and 29 May 2013, engine propelled trawlers are banned from fishing activities. This ban coincides with the spawning season for fish, during which they release eggs. The fishing nets used by trawlers can trap eggs and young ones leading to their destruction. USA, Australia and Spain impose similar bans every year. Kerala was the first Indian state which first imposed the ban aiming at resource conservation in 1988. Other coastal states followed the same rules and regulations.

President of India Gave Away Sangeet Natak Akademi Fellowships and Akademi Awards for 2012
The President of India, Pranab Mukherjee conferred the Sangeet Natak Akademi Fellowships (Akademi Ratna) on violinist N Rajam, Grammy award-winning percussionist T H Vikku Vinayakram and veteran playwright Ratan Thiyam for the year 2012, on 28 May 2013. The awards were given away at a ceremony at Rashtrapati Bhavan in New Delhi. Apart from these three personalities, other 34 artists were given away the Akademi awards (Akademi Puraskar). These artists were from different spheres such as theatre, music, dance and traditional arts. For the overall contribution to the performing arts, Nandini Ramani and Arun Mahadev Kakade were also given away the awards. About the Sangeet Natak Akademi Fellowships (Akademi Ratna) Sangeet Natak Akademi Fellowship and Awards are given by the Sangeet Natak Akademi, India's National Academy of Music, Dance & Drama. It is the highest national recognition given to practicing artists. The Akademi Award, also known as Akademi Puraskar has been conferred on people since 1952 and the Akademi Fellow honour also called Akademi Ratna has been conferred since 1954. Akademi Fellowship carries a prize amount of three lakh rupees and the Akademi Awards carry a prize amount of one lakh rupees, besides Tamrapatra and Angavastram. The Fellowships are restricted to forty living recipients at any given time. New Fellows are elected upon the demise of an existing Fellow. Karaikudi Sambasiva Aiyer, Ariyakudi Ramanuja Iyengar, Allauddin Khan, Hafiz Ali Khan, and Prithviraj Kapoor were the first awardees of Sangeet Natak Akademi fellowships. About the Sangeet Natak Akademi Sangeet Natak Akademi was established by the Government of India in 1953 and is India's National Academy of Music, Dance and Drama. It is responsible for promotion and preservation of the performing arts of the country.


One of the important activities of the Akademi is to honour artists of outstanding individual achievement in the fields of music, dance and drama.

Oldest Person of the World, also the Last Living Male of the 19th Century
The oldest person of the world, Jiroemon Kimura, 116 years Japanese man became the last male of the 19th century in the world. Jiroemon Kimura was given the title of last male alive to be born in the 19th century after the death of Barbados in the third week of May 2013 at the age of 113 years and 90 days. Gerontolgy Research Group at University of California, Los Angeles found out that as far as female were concerned, there are in all 21 women born before 1 January 1901 and they are still alive. Most of these 19th century women are in Japan and US, while others are in Canada and Europe. But amongst the male, Jiroemon Kimura is the only alive person of 19th century. Jiroemon Kimura was born on 19 April 1897. He has lived to witness the reigns of four kings as well as 61 Japanese prime ministers. In the year 1962, i.e., at the age of 65 years, he retired from the Japanese post office after serving 45 years in the office. At present, he lives in Kyotango. The oldest living woman of the world, Misao Okawa, 115 years old is also from Japan.

Union Government notified Cauvery Water Scheme, 2013

The Union government notified Cauvery Water (Implementation of the Order of 2007) Scheme, 2013 to implement the final award of the Cauvery Water Disputes Tribunal (CWDT), 2007. Under the scheme, a supervisory committee will be formed as notified by the ministry of Water Resources. The committee will be headed by the Water Resources Secretary, while Chief Secretaries of the Cauvery basin States/Union Territory (Karnataka, Tamil Nadu, Puducherry and Kerala) will be the members. The Central Water Commission (CWC) chairman will also be a member and the CWC's chief engineer will be the Member-Secretary. The headquarters of the committee will be in New Delhi. The scheme will be in place till the Cauvery Management Board is constituted as mentioned in the award. The chairman of the Committee may apply to the Supreme Court for appropriate directions with notices to other States if he thinks it is necessary. As per the notification of the final award of the Cauvery Water Disputes Tribunal (CWDT), 2007 in February 2013, the Cauvery River Authority (CRA), chaired by the Prime Minister, and the Cauvery Monitoring Committee (CMC), headed by the Water Resources Secretary are no longer functioning. Both committees were formed as per the directives of the Supreme Court to monitor the implementation of the interim orders of the tribunal. Supreme Court of India in its interim order on 10 May 2013 had directed the union government to constitute a supervisory committee for implementation of the final order of the CWDT dated 5 February 5, 2007 as notified on 19 February 2013. The Tribunal which included Chairman Justice N.P. Singh and members N.S. Rao and Sudhir Narain was set up in 1990. It had determined the total availability of water in the Cauvery basin at 740 thousand million cubic (TMC) feet at the Lower Coleroon Anicut site in a Unanimous award in February 2007. In the final order the Tribunal gave Tamil Nadu 419 TMC of water (as against the demand of 562 TMC); Karnataka 270 TMC (as against its demand of 465 TMC); Kerala 30 TMC and Puducherry 7 TMC. It had reserved 10 TMC for environmental protection.

India, USA and Australia joined Hands to develop Climate-resilient Crops

India, the United States and Australia in the third week of May 2013 came together to develop new climate-resilient varieties of rice and wheat, two of the major crops in the world.The United States Agency for International Development (USAID) will work in collaboration with the Australian Centre for Plant Functional Genomics (ACPFG) and India's Vibha Agrotech.This collaboration will seek to develop new rice and wheat varieties having greater tolerance to drought and salinity. Now, farmers can have more stable production in wake of sudden drought and salt water intrusion. The new technology will be first developed in Australia and India, but it will be made available to developing countries in South Asia and at world level where adverse climate conditions impact cereal yields, so that farmers could have a good harvest, even as climate change creates more unpredictable growing environments. The ambitious program is part of Feed the Future, the US Government's global hunger and food security initiative.


Transgenic Atlantic salmon Can Breed with Wild Brown Trout and Pass the Genes: Research
Scientists from the Memorial University of Newfoundland, Canada in their new study highlighted the potential risks that the genetically modified fish could escape in the wild. It was discovered that it was possible for the transgenic Atlantic salmon to cross-breed with the brown trout, which is its related species. The transgenic Atlantic salmon fish have been created with extra genes that allow them to grow more rapidly and the fish can pass on the trait of growing faster to its hybrid offspring as well. The transgenic Atlantic salmon fish is created by biotech company AquaBounty. AquaBounty declared that the risks of all kinds were absolutely negligible and that all these fishes were female as well as sterile. Also, the company announced that the habitat of these fishes would be tanks on the land. The transgenic Atlantic salmon fish at present are being assessed by US authorities. These fishes are the first GM animals in the world that are approved for the purpose of human consumption. In wild, the transgenic Atlantic salmon fish occasionally start mating with the brown trout and successfully produce the offspring. However, the researchers discovered that in the laboratory these genetically modified salmon were able to do the same. Out of 363 fishes analysed in the beginning of the experiment, around 40 percent of hybrids were found carrying modified genes. It was also discovered that just like the transgenic Atlantic salmon fish, the young fish were also able to develop very rapidly. Dr Darek Moreau of the Memorial University of Newfoundland, Canada declared that under the hatchery conditions, these transgenic hybrids were able to grow at a faster pace than the wild salmon, wild-type hybrids as well as the wild trout. When these fishes were placed in mocked-up stream in laboratory, it was found that hybrids out-competed the wild salmon as well as genetically modified salmon. The study highlighted ecological consequences in case the genetically modified fish got into the wild. The US Food and Drug Administration at present, is at its final stage of considering whether this transgenic salmon should go in the market on sale or not.

External Affairs Minister Salman Khurshid visited Saudi Arabia

External Affairs Minister Salman Khurshid on 27 may 2013 ended his four-day visit to Saudi Arabia. During this visit, he discussed a number of issues including the controversial Nitaqat law, counter-terrorism measures and energy security with top Saudi leaders. Significantly, India and Saudi Arabia decided to further strengthen and deepen their counterterrorism cooperation. Saudi Arabia had deported Abu Jundal, wanted in the 26/11 Mumbai terrorist attack in 2012. It also tried to mitigate Indias fears over the Nitaqat law. Salman Khurshids visit is the first by an Indian External Affairs Minister in the last five years to Saudi Arabia. In 2008, then Foreign Minister Pranab Mukherjee had visited Saudi Arabia. Saudi Arabia is Indias biggest supplier of oil.

MP Government announced Special Relief Package for Omkareshwar Project

Madhya Pradesh government Shivraj Singh Chouhan on 29 May 2013 announced a 212 crore rupees special relief package for Omkareshwar irrigation projects submergence-affected people. The benefits of this package will also be given to the families who have already relocated from the submergence area. He urged families affected by Omkareshwar project submergence to avail benefit of the special package within the prescribed time-limit and vacate the reservoir area in the larger interests of the state. The Omkareshwar Multipurpose Project is proposed across river Narmada near village Mandhata of district Khandwa in Madhya Pradesh. The dam site is located just up-stream of famous Omkareshwar Jyotirling Temple. Project is envisages construction of concrete dam with gated spillway to irrigate 146800 Hectares of land and to generate power of 520 Mw.

NTR Literary Award presented to Noted Oriya writer Manoj Das

Manoj Das, the Noted Oriya writer on 28 May 2013 was presented the NTR National Literary Award. The NTR National Literary Award was chosen by the jury of NTR Vignana Trust, headed by its chairperson N. Lakshmi Parvati which carries a cash prize of 1 lakh Rupees and citation. The award recognises Dass contribution to literature, both in Odiya and English. Manoj Das was also conferred with Padma Sri award and had his stories figured in the compilation of best literary works released in the US.


The award is instituted in memory of the actor-turned-politician who made a mark for his struggle to protect Telugu pride. He has penned down his first novel at the age of 14. The award is coincidently given to Manoj Das on the same day which is marked by the birth anniversary of former Chief Minister and Telugu Desam founder Nandamuri Taraka Rama Rao.

IMF lowered its Forecast for China's Economic Growth Rate at 7.75 Percent
The International Monetary Fund (IMF) on 29 May 2013 lowered its forecast for Chinas economic growth at 7.75 percent for the year 2013 citing a weak world economy and exports. Earlier, it had forecasted 8 percent growth. Annual economic growth of China fell to 7.8 per cent in 2012, the slowest since 1999, because of its decreasing export demand and increasing costs, the euro-zone debt crisis and uncertainty over the US economic recovery. China is worlds second largest economy. The IMF advised that China should put priority on reining in social financing growth, or else the country's fast credit supply may fuel inflation in future.

30-MAY-2013 Maharashtra Government approved Grant for Minority Welfare Schemes

The Maharashtra government on 29 May 2013 approved release of grant for various schemes of minorities' development. State finance ministry approved 10 crore rupees for improving infrastructure in schools and 10 crore rupees more for modernisation of madrasa institutions. An additional 1.5 crore rupees were allocated for police pre-recruitment training scheme and for increasing the stipend of teachers from 3000 rupees to 5000 rupees under the Marathi Language Foundation class scheme. 3.5 crore rupees were allotted to provide free bicycles to girls from the minority community. 3 crore rupees will be allocated for a Haj house at Aurangabad for the same. 50 crore rupees were also provided for Maulana Azad Financial Development Corporation.

Tripura Plan for 2013-14 Finalised at 2500 Crore Rupees

The Annual Plan for the year 2013-14 for Tripura was finalised on 29 May 2013 between Deputy Chairman, Planning Commission, Montek Singh Ahluwalia and Chief Minister of Tripura, Manik Sarkar. The size of the plan was agreed upon at 2500 crore Rupees. In the development strategy, the focus has remained on agriculture. Also, with this, the aim would be early completion of central infrastructure projects being implemented in Tripura. Economic Performance of Tripura The Gross State Domestic Product (GSDP) at the constant (2004-05) prices of Tripura increased by 90.84 percent from 2004-05 to 2012-13. The national GDP increased by 85.21 percent for this period only. From 2004-05 to 2012-13, the per capita NSDP at constant (2004-05) prices of Tripura increased by 74.14 percent, higher than the increase in national per capita NNI of 62.13 percent. Planning Commission Suggestions to Tripura Government The Tripura Government was advised to adopt investment friendly policies which were aimed at encouraging private participation in both physical and social infrastructure development. Need to focus on health and education was also emphasised. Tripura was also advised to strengthen the service delivery system with more accountability and transparency with minimal procedures by making use of information technology. Promotion of Dairy production systems was also advised to Tripura Government. Women empowerment should also be focused upon and for that, in order to look after the welfare of SC/ST and women, a committee was constituted in each Gram Panchayat which started functioning to impart necessary training to both the officials as well as elected representatives. Improvements of the State According to the 2011 census, Tripura has male and female literacy at 92.18 percent and 83.15 percent respectively against 82.14 percent and 65.46 percent at the national level respectively. The overall literacy is 87.75 percent which is higher than the national literacy rate of 74.04 percent. Tripura is among those states where Restructured ICDS is rolled out. While initiating the strengthened and re-structured ICDS, the focus would be on promotion of joyful learning approach for children 3-6 years of age.

Rituparno Ghosh, National Award Winning Filmmaker died at the age of 49

Rituparno Ghosh, the renowned Bengali film maker died on 30 May 2013 of cardiac arrest at his


south Kolkata residence. 49 Years old Rituparno Ghosh is the winner of 12 national and some of the international awards. Ghosh came into limelight by his direction of a children's film Hirer Angti in year 1994. His film Unishe April won national award winner in 1995. Some of his famous films include Dahan, Asukh, Chokher Bali, Raincoat, Bariwali, Antarmahal and Noukadubi. He had won the Best Director National Award for Abohomanin year 2012. Rituparno Ghosh was born on 31 August 1963 in Kolkata. His father was a well known documentary filmmaker. A brief Insight into Ghosh's Career Rituparno started his career as a advertising Professional and his directional debut was Hirer Angti (The diamond ring). He won the National film award for Best Director for his Bengali film Abohoman starring Jishu Sengupta, Ananya Chatterjee, Dipankar Dey and Mamata Shankar. He made his first screen presence in an Oriya film Katha Deithilli Ma Ku which is directed by Himanshu Parija and released in 2003. He hosted two celebrity chat shows, namely Ebong Rituporno on ETV Bangla and Ghosh and co. on Star Jalsha. He was also the scriptwriter of Gaaner Opa.

SEBI made Registration Compulsory for Investment Advisors

Securities and Exchange Board of India (SEBI) on 29 May 2013 in its notification made it compulsory for investment advisors to first obtain a certificate of registration for the same. SEBI ruled that in terms of Investment Adviser Regulations, no person shall act as an investment adviser unless he has obtained a certificate of registration from the Board or he is specifically exempt. In a move to curb the risks related to advisory services, the regulator said the investment adviser cannot enter into transactions on its own account contrary to the advice given to clients for at least 15 days from the day of such advice. SEBI further instructed that advisors must disclose the fee they get for advice on a particular product, their holdings in products on which they are advising, the risks involved and any conflict of interest arising out of their association with issuers of the financial products. The market regulator stated that the applicant seeking to act as an investment adviser should make an application to SEBI in a prescribed format along with the necessary supporting documents. A time period of one year has been given for existing investment advisers to comply with necessary capital adequacy requirements.

A Group of Ministers Approved the Coal Regulatory Authority Bill

Authority Bill which seeks to set up an independent regulatory authority for the coal sector in order to address the issues such as quality, supply and pricing. The draft Coal Regulatory Authority Bill will now be sent to the Cabinet latest by 9 June 2013 for the approval. Major Features of the Coal Regulatory Authority Bill The Coal Regulatory Authority Bill is aimed at addressing the issues of coal sector such as quality, supply and pricing. Also, the bill will balance the interest of all stake holders. It will also facilitate the judicious balance for Regulatory Authority in order to supervise supply as well as demand of coal sector in India. The GoM achieved closure on the pass through mechanism structure. The pass through mechanism means implies that the price charged from the electricity distribution companies will soak in the increasing cost instead of cross-subsiding by accumulation of or absorption by the power-generating companies. Earlier in May 2013, the GoM had decided that the fuel rates will not be determined by the proposed regulator, but the producers only. However, the regulator would have the power to resolve the disputes which result because of fuel supply agreements (FSAs). The Group of Ministers that approved the Coal Regulatory Authority Bill included Coal Minister Sriprakash Jaiswal, Planning Commission Deputy Chairman Montek Singh Ahluwalia and Environment Minister Jayanthi Natarajan.

Akshay B. Gaikwad Won Three Gold Medals in 15th Asian Youth Weightlifting Championships
Akshay B. Gaikwad won three gold medals on second day of 15th Asian Youth Weightlifting Championships in Doha. On the other hand, Lalu Taku won a silver as well as two bronze in the


championships. In the 15th Asian Youth Weightlifting Championships, India now has a total of eight gold, five silver as well as four bronze medals overall. Akshay B. Gaikwad won the gold each in snatch and clean and jerk (C&J) with 109kg and 135kg respectively and got the first position overall in 62 kg category. Lalu Taku won a silver in snatch and also a bronze in clean and jerk (C&J) and completed with a total of 242 kg, which fetched him another bronze. In 44kg girls category, Chandrika Tarafdar got the first position with a total of 131kg in two lifts. Earlier, TBC Lalchhanhima (56kg) won bronze with overall lifts of 90 kg and 130kg.

Department of Telecom (DoT) Decided to Levy 650 Crore Rupees Penalty on Airtel
The Department of Telecom (DoT) decided to levy 650 crore Rupees penalty on Airtel for violating licence conditions. The DoT came to conclusion that Airtel made use of call routing system which led to huge losses to exchequer. Background of the Case The Airtel case is from 2003 when Airtel offered the customers Subscriber Local Dialling service. As per the Subscriber Local Dialling service, a subscriber can get all the calls as local call even while on roaming. This meant that a subscriber from Delhi while travelling to Mumbai could get incoming calls like that of local calls instead of roaming. DoT explained that the call, in such a case, should be routed first to Delhi on national long distance network and later on, be brought back to Mumbai. Airtel, instead routed the call to Mumbai only, which led bypassing of long distance network, which is against the licence conditions. This led to loss of revenue to the Government in lower licence fee form from long distance operations.

Peter Higgs, Francois Englert received Award for God Particle Discovery
The Asturias Foundation announced on 29 May 2013 that Physicist Peter Higgs and Francois Englert and the European organization for Nuclear Research won the 2013 Prince of Asturias Award for Technical and Scientific Research in recognition of their work establishing the existence of the so-called God particle. Higgs and Englert - along with the late Robert Brout - formulated in 1964 the existence of a subatomic particle that came to be known as the Higgs boson. But it was only in 2012 that the European Organization for Nuclear Research, or CERN, was able to confirm the existence of this particle through experiments conducted with the Large Hadron Collider. This finding, which has been called the greatest discovery in the history of the understanding of Nature, enables a glimpse at what happened immediately after the Big Bang. Higgs is a native of Newcastle, England, who taught for 16 years at the University of Edinburgh. Englert is an 80-year-old Belgian, is affiliated with the Institute for Quantum Studies at Chapman University in California. Along with a cash prize of 50000 euros (about 64000 US dollars) and a sculpture by Joan Miro, each award recipient gets a diploma and an insignia bearing the Prince of Asturias Foundation's coat of arms. Spain's Crown Prince Felipe will give the award at a ceremony in the northern city of Oviedo. The prize is regarded as the Ibero-American world's equivalent of the Nobels.

Astronomers Revealed That Earth Was In Direct Line of Fatal Gamma-Ray Burst
Astronomers revealed the recent potential risk of Earth being hit by fatal gamma-ray burst from the star called Wolf-Rayet star WR 104, which is around 8000 light years away. Astronomers revealed that when the gamma rays would hit Earth, it would devastate around one quarter of atmospheric ozone of the Earth. Wolf-Rayet star WR 104 would become supernova on any time and this would eventually lead to generation of gamma rays which could reach Earth any time. Astronomer Grant Hill explained that this supernova would explode from tomorrow to 500000 years from today itself. The astronomer also explained that gamma-ray burst as well as optical photons from this supernova could reach the surface of Earth simultaneously. The revelation about gamma-ray burst from WR 104 was discovered by the University of Sydney astronomer Peter Tuthill in 1998. But Astronomer Grant Hill explained that this burst was dependent on rotation of the star. On looking at the WR 104 as well as its pinwheel, it was found that this is in combat with an inclination of zero. This meant that the Earth was in line of gamma rays from


the star. The gamma ray burst from this star would lead to a 50 percent increase in the UVB radiation.

TCS bagged a Six Year contract from DoP worth over 1100 crore Rupees
Tata Consultancy Services (TCS) on 29 may 2013 bagged a six-year contract from the Department of Posts (DoP) worth over Rs 1100 crore for the project called India Post 2012. The end-to-end IT modernization programme to be implemented by TCS will equip India Post with modern technologies and systems to enable it to provide services to customers in an effective manner. The scope of the project includes developing and supporting mail, finance and accounts, HR, and customer interaction management solutions for all channels including Rural ICT platform. Under the deal, TCS will also manage data migration, infrastructure, Service Level Agreement (SLA), call centre and centralized 24x7 service desk operation for DoP. The end-to-end security solutions, Enterprise Management System (EMS) and over all integration for entire system is the responsibility of core system integrator (CSI). Increased urbanization, demand for financial services, increased funding by the government for the weaker sections and the rural sector have opened up new opportunities for India Post, which has necessitated development of new processes and supporting technology.

Seventh Edition of the Regional Pravasi Bhartiya Divas was held in Sydney
Sydney:The seventh edition of the annual Regional Pravasi Bharatiya Divas will be held here. The seventh edition of the annual Regional Pravasi Bharatiya Divas will be held in Sydney in November 2013. India's Minister of Overseas Indian Affairs Vayalar Ravi and Premier of New South Wales Barry O'Farrell jointly announced this during a video conference conducted between their offices in New Delhi and Sydney. The 2013 Regional Pravasi Bharatiya Divas, the seventh such conference to be held outside India is expected to attract about 1000 delegates from the Asia-Pacific. The aim of the Regional Pravasi Bharatiya Divas or Overseas Indian Conference - is to connect India with its vast Indian Diaspora and bringing their knowledge, expertise and skills together.

Ang Dami Sherpa, Pregnant runner won womens Everest Marathon

44 Years old Ang Dami Sherpa from Nepal won the Everest Marathon on 29 May 2013 in womens category of Year 2013. Ang Dami Sherpa,won the womens title in 11th Tenzing-Hillary Everest Marathon in a timeline of 6 hours, 2 minutes and 10 seconds. This win is counted as Sherpas second title at the 42.2-km race, as she already won another title in year 2006. The Everest Marathon is considered as one of the most strenuous marathon events, which starts at the Everest Base Camp at an altitude of 5364 m, and ends at Namche Bazaar at 3446 metres. Ang Damis received 50000 Nepalese Rupees (31250 Rupees) as the Prize Money. It is important here to note that the race was coincided with the diamond jubilee celebrations of the first ascent of Everest by Edmund Hillary and Tenzing Norgay. The oldest runner in the mens section was Christopher Geiger of Switzerland and the youngest runner from the womens section was 18-year-old Monyean Foote of Australia. About Everest Marathon The Everest Marathon is listed in the Guinness Book of Records as the highest marathon in the world. The start line is at Gorak Shep 5184m (17000 feet)which is close to Everest Base Camp in Nepal. The finish line is at the Sherpa town of Namche Bazaar at 3446m (11300 feet) and the course is a measured 42 km (26.2 miles) over rough mountain trails. It is considered as the world''s most spectacular race and has been held fourteen times since 1987. The race is a non-profit-making venture organised by Bufo Ventures Ltd with all profits put into the Everest Marathon Fund, a UK registered charity.

Foreign Minister of Cuba Bruno Rodriguez Parrilla visited India

The Foreign Minister of Cuba, Bruno Rodriguez Parrilla paid an official visit to India from 25 May 2013 to 27 May 2013. During his visit, Foreign Minister Bruno Rodriquez Parrilla held talks with his Indian counter-part and discussed bilateral, regional and international issues of mutual interest. India and Cuba share a historic, warm and friendly relationship which has been marked by growing cooperation in diverse areas such as Sports, Hydrocarbons, IT, Biotechnology and Development Partnership.The two countries share common perspectives on a wide variety of issues in the global arena.


Both nations also explored the possibilities of increased trade ties between India and the Community of Latin American and Caribbean States, which at present is chaired by Cuba.

Kiran Mazumdar Shaw and Three Other Indians Figured in Forbes Philanthropy List
Kiran Mazumdar-Shaw, P N C Menon, Vineet Nayar and Ronnie Screwvala figured in 2013 year list of Asia-Pacific's most remarkable givers. The annual list of Heroes of Philanthropy is compiled by Forbes Asia magazine. It features a total of 48 persons from the Asia-Pacific region which includes countries like China, Singapore, Hong Kong and Indonesia. Keeping into view Kiran Mazumdars work on improving cancer care and her pledge to give away 75 per cent of wealth she was listed as one of the major Philanthropist. A Brief Insight into the Philanthropy activity of the Figured Indian in Forbes Philanthropy List P N C Menon- 64 Years old , Chairman Emeritus of Sobha Developers plans to give away half his estimated 435 million dollars fortune .The Sri Kurumba Trust, his familys charitable arm, adopted 4 villages in his native Kerala state in 2006 and helps families with a monthly income below 90 Dolars. On a 10-acre site it runs Sobha Hermitage, a home for senior citizens and young widows; Sobha Academy, a free school for more than 700 poor children; and a medical center. The trust also provides free meals and conducts mass weddings. Vineet Nayar- HCL Technologies Vice Chairman Vineet Nayar sold shares in the outsourcing company for 24 million US Dollars in year 2012 and the proceeds went mostly to Sampark, a charity he started long with his wife Anupama. It works with local governments to improve schools, fund social ventures and expand water supply. Ronnie Screwvala -Entertainment mogul Rohinton Ronnie' Screwvala is the co-founder of UTV Group and is India Managing Director of Walt Disney's. He plans to spend 180 million US Dollars over 5 years to uplift 1 million villagers in Maharashtra. His foundationstarted more than 20 years ago and rechristened as Swades (or Homeland) in year 2012 and is already working with 1800 villages in the state.

Tata Housing and National Safety Council of India (NSC) Signed Mou for EHS in Realty
A Memorandum of Understanding was signed between Tata Housing and National Safety Council of India (NSC) on 29 May 2013 in order to create awareness in regard to environment, health and safety (EHS) in area of real estate industry. The MoU was signed between Brotin Banerjee, MD and CEO Tata Housing and V B Sant, Director General, National Safety Council of India. Objective of the MoU The primary objective of the signed MoU is exchanging technical expertise between Tata Housing and National Safety Council of India (NSC). Also, the objective is that Tata Housing and NSC should work together in order to make environment, health and safety (EHS) a mandatory standard for the realty sector. Initiatives to be taken under MoU Under the signed MoU, certain initiatives will be taken which include co-production of multilingual high impact environment, health and safety (EHS) films as well as certain other training aids which are tailor-made to workforce requirements as well as development of the EHS audit rating system for realty projects. A research conducted recently found out that in Indian construction sector, the Fatal Accident Frequency Rate (FAFR) is 15.8 for 1000 employees in comparison to 0.23 in US.

13 Year-old Indian-American Arvind Mahankali won National Spelling Bee

Indian-American Arvind Mahankali, after years of close calls, won the Scripps National Spelling Bee on 30 May 2013. It was the 86th version of the competition. Arvind who hails from Bayside Hills, New York correctly spelled knaidel, a German-derived Yiddish word for a small mass of leavened dough to win the competition. The bee tested brain power, composure and, for the first time, knowledge of vocabulary. Arvind finished in third place in both 2011 and 2012, and both times, he was eliminated on Germanderived words. This time, he got two German-derived words in the finals, including the winning word, eliciting groans and laughter from the crowd. He spelled both with ease. Thirteen-year-old Pranav Sivakumar of Tower Lakes, Illinois, finished second.


The Scripps National Spelling Bee (formerly the Scripps Howard National Spelling Bee and commonly called the National Spelling Bee) is an annual spelling bee in the United States, with participants from the U.S., Canada, Mexico, Jamaica, New Zealand, Ghana and The Bahamas. The National Spelling Bee was formed in 1925.

31-MAY-2013 IndiGo Launched Seven New Flights to its Domestic System

IndiGo, the budget passenger carrier launched seven new flights to its domestic system on 30 May 2013. IndiGo announced to launch seven flights to Mumbai-Kochi, Mumbai- Jammu, ChennaiThiruvananthapuram, Chennai-Kochi, Jammu-Srinagar, Mumbai-Thiruvananthapuram and Mumbai-Srinagar. IndiGo, on the international sector will also connect Mumbai to Muscat from 15 June 2013. Also, there would be an increase in flight frequency between India and Oman. There would be an increase by seven flights everyday in a week from four flights everyday weekly. Also, the budget flight carrier announced that it had further plans to expand the network of flights in order to meet requirements and demands of leisure as well as business travellers. At present, IndiGo has a network of 422 flights which connects 33 destinations with fleet of 66 Airbus A320 aircraft.

PM Manmohan Singh re-elected to Rajya Sabha from Assam for the Fifth Time
Prime Minister Manmohan Singh on 30 May 2013 was elected to the Rajya Sabha for the fifth time from Assam. Indian National Congress (INC) won both the seats to the Upper House from Assam. The Other candidate of Indian national Congress from Assam, Santius Kujur was also elected as he has secured 45 seats. Manmohan Singh bagged 49 first preference votes in the 126-member Assembly. The other party, All India United Democratic Front (AIUDF)'s Aminul Islam, was defeated as it was polled only18 votes. It is worth mentioning here that the Congress has 78 members in the Assembly, while its ally, the Bodoland Peoples Front, has 12 MLAs. The Opposition AGP and the BJP have not taken part in the voting. Manmohan Singh will be the only prime minister who was in the Rajya Sabha during his entire term of office. Some Important facts Related to the Vote AIUDF is a partner of the UPA at the Centre and its 18 MLAs gave their second preference vote to the Prime Minister. The Prime Minister was the only contestant for the first preference vote seat as the other parties did not put up any candidate against him. The votes of all 78 Congress members and its ally Bodoland Peoples Front's 12 MLAs were found to be valid. The Congress now has five members out of seven in Assam to the Rajya Sabha. The election process has to be completed before 3 June 2013 as per the Election Commission's May 13 notification. Procedure of Election of Members to Rajya Sabha Article 84 of the Constitution lays down the qualifications for membership of Parliament. Article 102 of the Constitution lays down that a person shall be disqualified for being chosen as, and for being, a member of either House of Parliament The representatives of the States and of the Union Territories in the Rajya Sabha are elected by the method of indirect election. The representatives of each State and two Union territories are elected by the elected members of the Legislative Assembly of that State and by the members of the Electoral College for that Union Territory, as the case may be, in accordance with the system of proportional representation by means of the single transferable vote. The Electoral College for the National Capital Territory of Delhi consists of the elected members of the Legislative Assembly of Delhi, and that for Puducherry consists of the elected members of the Puducherry Legislative Assembly.

Hindi Journalism Day Celebrated In India to Mark 187 Years of Hindi Journalism
30 May: Hindi Journalism Day or Hindi Patrakarita Diwas 30 May is celebrated as the Hindi Journalism Day in Indias journalism every year. On 30 May


1826, the first Hindi newspaper of India called Udant Martand was edited and published. With this, the Hindi Journalism completed its 187 years in India. First Hindi newspaper was initiated by Jugal Kishor Shukla. Hindi daily publishing took place in Braj and Khari languages. Jugal Kishor Shukla helped in creating journalism as the fourth pillar of the Indian democracy. About Udant Martand- the first Hindi newspaper of India Udant Martand was the first Hindi newspaper in India. It was published from Calcutta. It was published on 30 May 1826, which is celebrated as the Hindi Journalism Day or Hindi Patrakarita Diwas. However, Udant Martand could not be published for long due to higher postal rates as well as distant readership.

Anti-Tobacco Day Observed across the World

31 May: World No-Tobacco Day According to World Health Organisation, World No-Tobacco day is observed every year on 31 May 2013. The Theme this year is Ban tobacco advertising, promotion and sponsorship. It is a global tragedy that diseases are allowed to be caused by tobacco consumption. WHO urged Governments (with its message free yourself) everywhere to address this needless threat to public health. The day is meant to highlight the risks associated with tobacco usage and reduce its consumption. Tobacco is the single largest cause of preventable death globally and approximately 5.5 million people die around the world every year - with India accounting for nearly a fifth of this. The primary risk of tobacco usage includes many forms of cancers. The ultimate goal is to contribute to protect present and future generations not only from these devastating health consequences, but also against the social, environmental and economic scourges of tobacco use and exposure to tobacco smoke.

UNESCO declared Nicobar Islands as World Biosphere Reserve

The United Nations Educational, Scientific and Cultural Organisation (UNESCO) in the Month of May 2013 had declared India's Nicobar Islands as a world biosphere reserve under its Man and the Biosphere Programme. Such reserves are established by Member countries. The UNESCO basically recognizes them under the programme to promote sustainable development based on local community efforts and sound science. The World Biosphere Reserves are considered as sites of excellence, where new and optimal practices to manage nature and human activities are tested and demonstrated. About Nicobar Island The Nicobar Islands are an archipelagic island chain located in the eastern Indian Ocean. The island chain is home to 1800 animal species and some of the world's most endangered tribes. It is among 12 new sites added to the global network of biosphere reserves in Paris. The Nicobar Islands are recognized as a distinct terrestrial ecoregion, the Nicobar Islands rain forests, with many endemic species. The Nicobar Islands are part of a great island arc created by the collision of the Indo-Australian Plate with Eurasia. About World Biosphere Reserve Biosphere reserves are sites established by countries and recognized under UNESCO's Man and the Biosphere (MAB) Programme to promote sustainable development based on local community efforts and sound science. It is a tool tools to help countries implement the results of the World Summit on Sustainable Development and, in particular, the Convention on Biological Diversity and its Ecosystem Approach. Such reserves are located in 117 countries and nine of them are now located in India. Other sites added to the list include Pakistan's Ziarat Juniper forest and China's Snake Island. There are currently 621 biosphere reserves including 12 transboundary sites.

Cochin Shipyard Limited Launched Its Third Fast Patrol Vessel for Indian Coast Guard
Cochin Shipyard Limited (CSL) on 28 May 2013 launched its third Fast Patrol Vessel (FPV) which is built for the Indian Coast Guard. The vessel was launched by Nina Paul Antony, the Chairman of


Cochin Port Trust. This vessel was named Abhinav. About the Fast Patrol Vessel The Fast Patrol Vessel was named Abhinav. The Fast Patrol Vessel weighs 120 tons and was placed on the specially designed cradles at the dock head which was hoisted by the gantry crane. This vessel is third in series of 20 numbers FPVs contracted by CSL. The primary objective of the vessel is monitoring, fisheries protection as well as patrolling within within exclusive economic zone (EEZ). Also, the objective of this vessel is coastal patrolling and involvement in patrolling for anti smuggling, search and rescue operations and for anti piracy operations. The secondary role of the vessel is to provide communication link as well as escort convoys during the war time as well as hostilities. The three Fast Patrol Vessels are small in size but they are technologically challenged and complex. These ships are propelled by water jets in order to achieve the speed of 33 knots. Cochin Shipyard developed certain special techniques in order to make sure of the high quality welding as well as fabrication of Aluminium structures. At present, the Cochin Shipyard has 25 ships on the order which consists of 20 Fast Patrol Vessels, 3 Offshore Support ships for Indian and foreign owners, one Prestigious Aircraft Carrier for the Indian Navy as well as 1 Buoy Tender vessel for the Department of Lighthouses and Lightships.

CSO:Economic Growth declined to a low of 5 Percent for the 2012-13 Fiscal

According to data released by the Central Statistical Organisation (CSO) on 31 May 2013, economic growth slowed to 4.8 per cent in the January-March quarter and fell to a decade's low of 5 per cent for the entire 2012-13 fiscal due to poor performance of farm, manufacturing and mining sectors. The economic growth or gross domestic product (GDP) had expanded by 5.1 per cent in JanuaryMarch quarter of 2012-13.The Indian economy had grown by 5.4 per cent, 5.2 per cent and 4.7 per cent in the first, second and third quarters, respectively, of 2012-13. The country had clocked 6.2 per cent growth in 2011-12 fiscal. In January-March quarter of 2012-13, manufacturing sector grew marginally by 2.6 per cent, against 0.1 per cent growth in the same period of the earlier fiscal. During 2012-13, the sector grew by a meagre one per cent compared to 2.7 per cent in the previous fiscal. Mining and quarrying sector contracted by 3.1 per cent during the fourth quarter of last fiscal. Farm sector output expanded by just 1.4 per cent in January-March this year, as against 2 per cent in the same quarter of 2011-12. The agriculture sector also grew at a slower rate of just 1.9 per cent in 2012-13 compared to 3.6 per cent in 2011-12.

BSNL Got Clearance to Roll out Mobile Network in the Naxal-Affected Areas
The Union Cabinet of India gave clearance to Bharat Sanchar Nigam Ltd (BSNL) to roll out its mobile network in the Naxal-affected areas. Decks were cleared for mobile network to be set up by BSNL, which in turn will be financed by Universal Services Obligation (USO) fund. Earlier, the Department of Telecom had sent out note for Cabinets consideration, which was confirmed by all the major central ministries such as Finance Ministry and Home Ministry. The existing regulations demand that funding from USO can be done only via tendering process. The Department of Telecom, however wanted BSNL to have this project because of security issues in the Naxal-affected areas. The project involves establishing telecom towers in 2199 locations which are spread across nine states. The overall cost of this project is 3000 crore Rupees. Though all major ministries of the Union Government supported the project, but certain conditions were levied by some of the ministries. The Ministry of Finance suggested that the mechanism for monitoring the plans of BSNL should be set up by the Department of Telecom in order to make sure that the cost of the project does not exceed the amount which is already earmarked. The Ministry of Tribal Affairs declared that apart from the Naxal-affected areas, BSNL should provide mobile network coverage in the tribal areas as well. The Ministry of Rural Development suggested similar plan for BSNL for mountainous regions. The project is undertaken for improvement of communication services in these areas for the security agencies.


Fossilised Skeleton of Flying Dinosaur that Resembled Chicken, Discovered in China

Researchers at Royal Belgian Institute of Natural Sciences in Brussels discovered new fossilised skeleton of flying dinosaur called Aurornis xui in China. This new species is approximately the size of a chicken. It lived around 150 million years ago. The flying dinosaur from the Middle-Late Jurassic period was 20 inches in length and also had teeth. Its diet could be insects. The discovery provides an insight into understanding of evolution of birds. Aurornis xui was discovered from Tiaojishan Formation of Liaoning Province, China. The lead author and researcher, Pascal Godefroit explained that the dinosaur might have had four wings, two alongside the arms and two alongside the legs. The specimen, which is preserved in the clay sediment is an adult. Earlier, another fossil from around 150 million years ago, known as Archaeopteryx was considered as most primitive bird, but with this discovery, it is expected that Aurornis xui is even more primitive bird that Archaeopteryx. The discovery hints towards the relationships between early species of the birds as well as the dinosaur relatives of these birds. This means that the species which were called birds could be considered as the troodontids or vice-versa.

Integrated Action Plan (IAP) extended for Four More Years

The Union government of India on 30 May 2013 decided to extend the Integrated Action Plan (IAP), a specially conceived development programme for the worst Naxal-affected districts, for four more years with annual allocation of one thousand crore rupees. The aim of this initiative is to provide public infrastructure and services in Maoist-affected districts. Each of the 82 IAP districts will be given 5 crore rupees annually while remaining 590 crore rupees will be distributed among the districts on the basis of their population and area. Andhra Pradesh, Bihar, Chhattisgarh, Jharkhand, Madhya Pradesh, Maharashtra, Odisha, Uttar Pradesh and West Bengal are the nine states covered under the plan. The IAP is implemented under direct supervision of the Planning Commission of India. IAP was formulated as an additional central assistance scheme on 100 percent grant basis in November 2010.

TVS Logistics Services Ltd. Acquired US-Based Wainwright Industries

TVS Logistics Services Ltd. acquired second company in US called Wainwright Industries, the end-to-end supply chain provider. Wainwright Industries is headquartered in Missouri. The total amount of acquisition is 50 crore Rupees. Wainwright Industries is the 65 year old company with the sales turnover of 20 million US dollar. It has two plants, both of which are based in the US. The company employs 300 people in all. Wainwright Industries has 13 crucial clients which also include General Motors. The first company acquired by TVS Logistics Services Ltd. in US was Manufacturers Equipment and Supply Company (MESCO) in 2011. TVS Logistics Services Ltd. decided to keep the present management as it is, which means that the current President of Wainwright Industries, David Robbins will play his role. The acquisition will facilitate TVS Logistics Services Ltd. in adding unique service capabilities like moving ahead in value chain system, sub-assembly for manufacturers as well as cross-docking. TVS Logistics Services Ltd. is the 2200 crore Rupees turnover company. Both UK and India contribute 1000 crore Rupees to the turnover of TVS Logistics. Remaining turnover is contributed by Thailand and US.

India,Thailand signed Extradition Treaty nearly after Two Decades of Negotiations

India and Thailand on 30 May 2013 signed a treaty for the extradition of runaways wanted for terrorism, transnational crimes, economic offences and other serious crimes which will shortly eliminate a safe refuge for criminals wanted in India and Thailand. The extradition treaty between India and Thailand was signed during Prime Minister Manmohan Singh's first bilateral visit to Thailand. With the signing of extradition treaty, India is supposed to put forward its requests to Thailand for the extradition of criminals like fugitive Syed Musakir Mudassar Hussain alias Munna Zingada who is wanted in India for underworld activities. Actually Munna Zingada is presently in a Thai


prison for his involvement in the attack on underworld don Chhota Rajan here in 2001. Highlights of the Extradition Treaty The Treaty provides the legal framework for seeking extradition of fugitive offenders, including those involved in terrorism, transnational crimes, economic offences etc. Treaty provides for the extradition of any person who is wanted for trial or for the imposition or enforcement of a sentence by one Contracting State and is found in the territory of the other Contracting State. The treaty will help both the countries in expedited extradition of fugitives. This Treaty would further strengthen the relationship between two law enforcement agencies by providing a firm legal basis for their bilateral cooperation. The extradition treaty concluded after two decades of negotiations, and a memorandum of understanding on cooperation in anti-money laundering, gives a major signal of Indias shared commitment in combating terrorism, organized crime, drug trafficking and counterfeiting.

HRD Ministry Constituted National Testing Agency (NTA)

The HRD Ministry on 31 May 2013 decided to set up a seven member Task Force under the Chairmanship of Sanjay Dhande. It will have the representatives from CBSE, UGC, NCERT, AICTE and from the Ministry. It will prepare a blue print for creating a special purpose vehicle to take the concept of National Testing Agency (NTA) forward. The rationale for setting up the NTA lies in ensuring that multiplicity of entrance examination leading to stress on the students is addressed in a comprehensive manner by formulating a uniform entrance examination for admissions in different branches of higher learning. The decision for setting up the National Testing Agency was taken in the meeting of Central Advisory Board for Education (CABE) which was held on 2nd April 2013. In the meeting it was decided that the proposal to set up National Testing Agency shall be taken forward in consultation with all stakeholders.

IAF Inducted Basic Trainer Aircraft Pilatus PC 7 MKII

The IAFs premier Academy located at Dundigal, Hyderabad on 31 May 2013 inducted basic trainer aircraft Pilatus PC 7 MKII. The PC 7 MK II aircraft would be used for Basic Training of all pilots of the Indian Air Force, in addition to the pilots of the Indian Navy and the Coast Guard. Till now this role was performed by the reliable but ageing workhorse, the HJT-16 Kiran aircraft. A total of 75 aircraft have been contracted from Pilatus, Switzerland. The procurement of PC 7 MkII was approved by the government in May 2012 and the first batch of PC-7 Mk II arrived at the Academy in February this year as a part of accelerated induction plan. The first batch of Flight Cadets would start their training on PC-7 MK II from July onwards.

US issued sanctions against top aide of Iran's Ayatollah Khamenei over alleged Human Rights Abuse
The US government in the Month of May 2013 has issued sanctions against Ayatollah Ali Khamenei's deputy chief of staff and over 50 other Iranian government officials for alleged human rights abuses. The US in order to help Iranians exercise freedom of expression accused Iran of blocking Internet and communications access to silence dissent ahead of its 14 June 2013 Presidential Election. The sanctions issued has made easier for Americans to export advanced communications equipment to Iranian civilians. The sanctions were targeted at an Iranian intelligence unit which is found responsible for blocking information and Khamenei aide Asghar Mir-Hejazi. On the Other hand, the Treasury Department, eased export restrictions on personal communications hardware and software to Iranian civilians. About Ayatollah Ali Khamenei Ayatollah Khamenei is the Supreme Leader of Iranand a Shia Marja. He had also served as the President of Iran from 1981 to 1989. In 2012, Forbes selected him 21st in the list of 'World's Most Powerful People' He has been described as one of only three people having important influence during the history of the Islamic Republic of Iran. Khamenei was the victim of an attempted assassination in June 1981 that paralyzed his right arm although so far the biggest challenge to his leadership has been the 2009 Iranian election protests following the 2009 presidential elections during which he strongly supported President Mahmoud Ahmadinejad.


OECD scaled down India's Growth Rate at 5.3 Percent

The Organisation for Economic Co-operation and Development (OECD), on 29 May 2013 scaled down Indias growth estimate to 5.3 per cent for 2013 from 5.9 per cent. The report warned that investment and growth potential could face constraints because of structural set up. However, the report stated that GDP growth is likely to rise gradually over the next two years. The report added that growth will gradually recover in 2013. The OECD further forecasted that Chinas economy would grow 7.8 per cent in 2013, lower from a previous estimate of 8.5 per cent. It also noted that China will have the highest growth rate among major nations until around 2020. However it could be then outshined by India. China is likely to surpass the United States as the worlds largest economy in the next few years as per the report, and India will overtake Japan to become the third largest. The report predicted that India was likely to improve growth to 6.7 per cent in 2013, after having shown a decades low of 3.8 per cent in 2012. The global economy will grow at 3.1 per cent in 2013, and accelerate further to 4 per cent in 2014. The U.S. is likely to grow 1.9 per cent in 2013 and then accelerate to 2.8 per cent in 2014.



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