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• Multilateral: Malaria, along with tuberculosis, continues to
be one of the world´s most lethal diseases with half the world´s
population - about 3.3 billion people - at risk from it,
according to the latest World Malaria Report 2009, released
by WHO in December 2009.
• G20 finance ministers hailed a better-than-expected
economic recovery and said it was time for plans to unwind
measures to tackle the waning global crisis.
• Indonesia said that it will soon ratify the Comprehensive
Nuclear Test Ban Treaty, a step hailed by disarmament
advocates as helping the treaty to enter into force. The treaty
bans nuclear tests in the atmosphere to prevent radioactive
fallout on the earth. The treaty has been signed by 182
countries, of which 151 have ratified by adopting national
laws to implement the treaty. But the treaty demands that the
world's 44 countries with nuclear technology must all
ratify before it enters into force. Of the 44, nine have not
yet ratified. The nine are Indonesia, China, North Korea, Egypt, India, Iran, Israel,
Pakistan and the US.
• The 16th SAARC summit held in Thimpu with heads of eight South Asian countries
seeking a joint initiative to tackle climate change threats and also boost trade and
regional cooperation among SAARC nations. With climate change being the central theme
of the SAARC summit, India hoped the eight-nation bloc would hold the dialogue on the issue
in a "meaningful manner" and backed its "fresh" position on global warming to be adopted at
the Cancun meet later this year.
• NATO leaders urged Bosnia to begin the MAP programme that is a crucial stepping stone
for eventual membership, but warned that more needed to be done to transfer military
infrastructure to central authorities.
• Policing agency Europol said that thirty-three percent fewer terrorist acts, a total of 294,
were last year committed in the European Union, excluding the United Kingdom.
• Iran and Syria had discussed at length the formation of a regional economic bloc with Turkey
and Iraq as their key partners. Both, Iran and Syria had supported the Palestinian Hamas
and the Lebanese Hizbollah against Israel.
• Bilateral: The US launched a Global Entrepreneurship programme and several other
ambitious projects in
an effort to bridge the
gap with the Muslim
• Iran, North Korea
threaten key nuclear
treaty: US
• Ahead of Iranian
President Mahmoud
intended visit to address a United Nations conference on nuclear non-proliferation next week in
New York, several US Congressmen demanded to deny his entry into the country.
• The Russian and Ukrainian Parliaments simultaneously ratified a landmark agreement to
extend the lease of a key Black Sea naval base in Sevastopol to Russia by 25 years, till
2042. The former Ukrainian President, Viktor Yushchenko had tried to evict the Russian

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Navy from Sevastopol even before 2017. Under a package deal, Russia has agreed to cut the
price of natural gas it supplies to Ukraine by 30 per cent, a discount that will add up to a
wobbling $40 billion over the next 10 years. Ukraine Facts: Capital (and largest city):
Kiev. Government: Unitary semi-presidential republic. President: Viktor Yanukovych.
Prime Minister: Mykola Azarov. Speaker of Parliament: Volodymyr Lytvyn. Legislature:
Verkhovna Rada.
• German hostages freed in Nigeria.
• South Korean warship Cheonan was retrieved from sea off Baengnyeong Island, South
Korea. Seoul (South Korea) has been careful not to point the finger directly at the North over
the incident in the Yellow Sea, which has stoked already tense ties, and Pyongyang (North
Korea) has denied it was to blame.
• China's biggest operator of nuclear power plants has confirmed that it will export two 340
MW nuclear power reactors to Pakistan in a $2.375-billion agreement, in a controversial
deal that analysts say goes against internationally-mandated guidelines governing the transfer
of nuclear technology. The CNNC has already agreed to build two power reactors in Pakistan,
the 325 MW Chashma-1, which started operating in 2000, and Chashma-2, which will be
completed next year. The statement said the two new reactors are "2x340 MW¨. "Chashma-2
will be a benchmark for C-3 and C-4 projects.
• The assassination of 11 French engineers in a bomb blast in Karachi in 2002 may not be
the work of Islamist terrorists, as alleged these past years, but an act of retaliation carried out
by Pakistan's army and Inter-Services Intelligence in response to the French State's failure
to pay Pakistani officials $33 million in promised kickbacks for a C1.8-billion contract for
the purchase of Agosta submarines in 1994.
• Country News: North America- The US navy's long-standing ban on women serving
in submarines came to an end with the commanders saying that female officers would
bolster the underwater fleet.
• A jury in Portland, Oregon, USA ordered the Boy Scouts of America to pay 18.5 million
dollars in punitive damages to a man who was abused by a Scout leader in the 1980s.
• South America- Chile won the right to host the largest telescope ever built, dubbed "the
world's biggest eye on the sky" by the European Southern Observatory (ESO). The
other main contender site for the European Extremely Large Telescope (ELT), due to begin
operation in 2018, was the Spanish isle of La Palma in the Canary Islands off western Africa.
The ESO's three facilities in the Atacama desert include the Very Large Telescope (VLT) in the
town of Paranal which is currently considered the foremost European-operated observatory.
The Chilean desert region has extremely low humidity and is also free of the storms that lash
the Canary Islands.
• Europe- Russia's Kremlin-loyal parliament is considering a bill that would increase the
power of the Federal Security Service and restore practices once associated with its Soviet
predecessor, the KGB.
• Britain's ruling Labour party seemed to be heading for its worst election defeat in 92
years as the Prime Minister Gordon Brown admitted that he has paid a very "heavy price"
for his 'bigoted' outburst against an elderly widow.
• The eccentric far right British National Party (BNP), which is hoping to win its first-ever
parliamentary seat in the May 6 general election, has called for a ban on immigration from
Muslim countries labelling them as a "deadly threat¨ to the British way of life. The party's
manifesto was launched by its controversial leader Nick Griffin.
• The controversy in France surrounding an imminent ban on the wearing of the burqa, the
niqab or other full face coverings suddenly took a dramatic turn when a young woman
revealed she had been fined C22 by the police for driving while wearing a niqab.
• Belgium is currently without a government, Prime Minister Yves Leterme and his Cabinet
having resigned over linguistic differences and the country is mired in a deep identity crisis,
with both French and Flemish speakers refusing to compromise on the status of the largely
French-speaking capital which falls within a Flemish-dominated area. Belgium King Albert II
has accepted the government's resignation after the coalition of the Prime Minister Yves
Leterme's government broke down.

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• Belgium bans burqa : Belgium became Europe's first country to vote for a ban on the
full Islamic veil or burqa, sparking dismay among Muslims and warnings of a dangerous
precedent with France set to follow suit. Women wearing the burqa in public could face fines of
up to C150. Amnesty International and other human rights organisations have spoken out
against the bill saying it violates individual liberties. The country's Muslim population which
accounts for just 2.7 per cent of the total (only about 100 women wear the niqab) described
the law as being "rooted in prejudice¨. But Daniel Bacquelaine, a Liberal who authored the
bill, said the burqa is incompatible with basic security as everyone in public must be
recognisable. It also clashes with the principles of an emancipated society that respects
the rights of all, he said.
• Africa- Sudanese President Omar al-Beshir, who is wanted by the International Criminal
Court, was declared winner of the country's first multi-party presidential election in over
two decades.
• West Asia- Authorities in UAE have detained 1,094 runaways housemaids in a crackdown
on the absconding domestic helpers and offenders and warned of hefty fines on people
harbouring them.
• Suntanned women and girls who are like "walking mannequins" will be arrested in Iran,
Tehran's police chief has warned.
• India's Neighbour- Chinese government's plans to empower police to detain suspects
up to 37 days without charge without having to pay compensation, has raised concerns
that such "sweeping powers" could be used to stem rising dissidence and protests.
• The Sri Lankan military has begun the process of gradual withdrawal from civilian properties
under its occupation in the Jaffna peninsula.
• With a constitutional crisis and President's Rule threatening Nepal, its former Maoist
guerrillas began an indefinite general strike paralysing the entire nation after talks with
the ruling parties failed and Prime Minister Madhav Kumar Nepal refused to quit.
• Miscellaneous: The Hubble Space Telescope celebrated the 20th anniversary of its
launch. Hubble, named after the astronomer Edwin P. Hubble (1889-1953), was launched
into low-Earth orbit on April 24, 1990. Since then, it has been sending back some of the
most spectacular images of galaxies - helping scientists place the age of the universe at 13.7
billion years, learn that black holes are at the centre of most galaxies, monitor planetary
formation and discover that the universe is expanding at an ever-faster pace.
• North America- The landmark India-US civil nuclear deal giving New Delhi access to nuclear
technology despite its refusal to sign the Nuclear Non-Proliferation Treaty (NPT) would not
weaken the pact, says Ellen Tauscher, undersecretary of state for arms control, USA.
• India-US naval exercise begins: The 14th edition of MALABAR in the Arabian Sea will see
frontline units of the U.S. Navy's 7
Fleet and Indian Navy's Western Fleet taking part in the
10-day exercise.The Director of the Central Bureau of Investigation (CBI), Ashwani Kumar,
said that the agency is hopeful of securing the extradition of Danish citizen Kim Davy, the
main accused in the 1995 Purulia armsdrop case. The Executive of Denmark had recently
consented to India's extradition plea.
• The Centre said all "bottlenecks¨ hindering access to the 26/11 accused, David Headley,
have been removed and a new team will be sent to the U.S. to pursue the matter.
• American PG degree may be short cut to green card. At the same time, they have
proposed tightening of rules for H-1B and L1 visas, which are also most popular among Indian
technology professionals.
• Canada has said it takes "very seriously" the concerns raised by India about rising
activities of Sikh separatists affiliated to the Khalistan movement in the country. Andrew
MacDougall, Press Secretary to Prime Minister Stephen Harper said that in 2003, Canada listed
Babbar Khalsa and the International Sikh Youth Federation as terrorist entities. He
described the Kanishka bombing as a terrible tragedy and the worst terrorist incident in
Canadian history. The Canadian government looks forward to the final report of Justice
Major's Commission of Inquiry into the Investigation of the Bombing of Air India
Flight 182. Recently, High Commissioner in Ottawa S M Gawai raised the Khalistan
movement activities with the Canadian government. Canada is one of the few countries,

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according to the India, where pro-Khalistani elements are becoming active again. India had
also expressed concern at attempts to de-list banned organisations such as the Babbar Khalsa
in Canada.
• Europe- Indradhanush 2010, the third in a series of joint air exercises between India
and the UK will be conducted in October 2010 in the skies over Jangalmahal at Air Force
Station Kalaikunda. Pilots of the Royal Air Force in Eurofighter Typhoons will match their skills
against the IAF's flying aces. The IAF will fly Sukhois, Mig-29s and Mirage-2000s.
• South East Asia-Singapore has developed expertise in a whole range of urban solutions
such as water, sewage or waste management, low-cost public housing and transport
systems management, all of which may be relevant to Tamil Nadu or Chennai, according to
S. Iswaran, Singapore's Senior Minister of Trade, Industry and Education. Mr. Iswaran
referred to the collaborative venture on the Cooum river restoration project, for which the
Chennai Rivers Restoration Trust and the Singapore Cooperation Enterprise of the Singapore
government signed a memorandum of understanding last month. Mr. Iswaran said the
Comprehensive Economic Cooperation Agreement (CECA) between the two countries had
created a base that facilitated a lot of growth in trade and investment flows in both directions.
The Singapore Telecom (SingTel) had an investment stake in Bharti.
• India's Neighbour- The Central Government said that there was no blanket ban on import
of Chinese telecom equipment and any such decision was taken in each and individual
• The government has initiated a probe into the alleged dumping of a chemical, mainly used
in the rubber industry, by China after finding "sufficient evidence¨ of injury to the domestic
• Pakistan formally sought the custody of Ajmal Amir Kasab - the lone surviving terrorist from
the 2008 Mumbai attacks - and requested Indian magistrates to testify in the Rawalpindi
trial of seven Lashkar-e-Taiba men charged with involvement in that crime. India &
Pakistan do not have an extradition treaty.
• Pakistan, which has often accused India of stealing its share of Indus waters, has said the
authorities within Pakistan have a tendency to "pass the buck" and exaggerate differences with
New Delhi on the issue. Pakistani foreign minister Shah Mahmood Qureshi has said that
the mismanagement in Pakistan is resulting in the loss of 34 million acre feet of water.
• The recently held South Asian Association for Regional Cooperation (SAARC) summit resolved
the issue of differential visa norms for Pakistani students and faculty for the South Asian
University (SAU) coming up at Delhi. G.K. Chaddha is CEO, SAU.
• Four Indians convicted of arms smuggling and imprisoned for 17 years in Bangladesh last week
are members of the Hynniewtrep National Liberation Council (HNLC), a militant outfit in
Meghalaya. The HNLC, a Khasi separatist outfit that carries out hit-and-run operations
from its hideouts in Bangladesh, has been demanding a sovereign Hynniewtrep homeland
in Eastern Meghalaya.
• Ranjan Daimary alias D. R. Nabla, chief of the anti-talks faction of National Democratic
Front of Bodoland (NDFB) and wanted in the 2008 serial bomb blasts in Assam, was handed
over to BSF by BDR.
• To mark the 2,600th Buddha Jayanti, Sri Lanka will present India a sapling of the Maha
Bodhi tree, under which Gautama Buddha is believed to have attained enlightenment. The
Jaya Sri Maha Bodhi is a sacred fig tree at Anuradhapura town and is said to be a sapling
of the historical Bodhi tree. It is the oldest recorded tree in the world.
• Sri Lankan President Mahinda Rajapaksa has told Prime Minister Manmohan Singh about his
government's plans to reach a political settlement with the Tamil ethnic community, which will
include the setting up of a panel of eminent persons to examine all issues of discord.
• External Affairs Minister S.M. Krishna met his Sri Lankan counterpart G.L. Peiris in Thimphu
(Bhutan) and discussed issues relating to a political settlement which ensures a "sense of
participation and equality" among the ethnic group.
• Chairman of the UCPN (Maoist) Pushpa Kamal Dahal "Prachanda" warned India not to
interfere in Nepal's internal matters.

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• Legislations, Policies & Executive Orders
• Guideline to promote solar energy planned. It will enable entrepreneurs to set up small
• Operation Greenhunt'-Calling for talks between Maoists and the government, writer
Arundhati Roy demanded an immediate ceasefire on both sides, formal halting of the
combing operations and Operation Green Hunt, and resettling people who were rendered
homeless in Chhattisgarh's Dantewada district. Armed tribals took out a rally at Malkangiri
town protesting against the `Operation Greenhunt', the proposed joint operation against
Maoists parts of south Orissa, adjoining Chhattisgarh and Andhra Pradesh.
• The Centre has asked the States to designate an appropriate authority at the district level
for identifying economically backward families to ensure uniformity in sanctioning
interest subsidy on education loans - under the Central scheme for students belonging
to economically weaker sections - from scheduled banks. Under the Educational Loan Scheme
of the Indian Banks Association (IBA), students belonging to families with income from all
sources of less than Rs. 4.5 lakh annually will be entitled to full interest subsidy for pursuing
courses of studies in technical education and professional streams from recognised
institutions in India. Proof of income is required to be certified by authorities designated
by the State government to avail subsidy. However, the only criterion to obtain the income
certificate is economic backwardness and not social background.
• Actor Aamir Khan, appointed the brand ambassador of the National School Sanitation
Initiative, supported the campaign to promote cleanliness in schools across the country at a
function attended by students. National School Sanitation Initiative was jointly launched by the
ministries of urban development and HRD, with the objective of bringing about much-
needed behavioral change, key to the success of any sanitation-related initiative.
• The Union Cabinet approved a capital infusion of Rs.15,000 crore in public sector banks
(PSBs) during the current fiscal to facilitate an increase in their lending capacity by about
Rs.1.85 lakh crore.
• The government said road projects worth Rs 7,300 crore have been approved for
implementation in Naxal-affected areas over the next three years.
• Cut motion against government defeated, SP, RJD MPs stay away. The cut motion
moved by CPI leader Gurudas Dasgupta on failure to formulate proper policies on
petroleum products was defeated by a margin of 88 votes when it received the support of
201 votes with 289 voting against it in a House (Lok Sabha) of 543.
• Government gears up to deny illegal phone tapping as Opposition unites. 50 BJP MPs tabled a
breach of privilege notice in Lok Sabha, under Section 222 of the Rules of Procedure and
Conduct of Business, against Prime Minister Manmohan Singh for announcing outside
Parliament his decision to reject setting up of a JPC on the issue of alleged phone tapping. The
MPs submitted the petition to Lok Sabha Secretary General P D T Achary. Lok Sabha Speaker
Meira Kumar said the breach of privilege notice moved against Prime Minister Manmohan
Singh by the Bharatiya Janata Party was under her consideration.
• Commissions, Committees
• The Parliamentary Estimates Committee has pulled up the Archaeological Survey of India
(ASI) and the culture ministry for 33 excavation reports being pending for 10 to 15 years.
• A Parliamentary committee on HRD in its 221st report has suggested that the funding
pattern between the Centre and the State for implementing Right To Education Act should
be referred to the National Development Council headed by the Prime Minister.
• The Cabinet Committee on Economic Affairs (CCEA) has approved a proposal to set up
1,000 additional model schools as a benchmark of excellence in educationally backward
blocks (EBBs) through State governments. With these, the number of model schools to be
set up will go up to 3,500. The present proposal is meant for 3,500 EBBs in 27 States and
Union Territories, although the model school scheme will cover 6,000 blocks in all States and
UTs. All States will be eligible for one model school with classes from VI to XII or from
IX to XII. These schools will have norms and standards equivalent to or better than
Kendriya Vidyalayas, but the medium of instruction and the affiliating board will be decided
by the State governments. As much as 75 per cent of the recurring and non-recurring cost,

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subject to scheme norms, will be borne by the Centre except for special category States for
which the sharing pattern is 90:10
• UIDAI: The 16-digit unique identification number to be assigned to each individual by the
Unique Identification Authority of India (UIDAI) will now come under the new name
'AADHAR' and will also bear a logo. The Unique Identification Authority of India (UIDAI) has
been created as an attached office under the Planning Commission. Its role is to develop
and implement the necessary institutional, technical and legal infrastructure to issue unique
identity numbers to Indian residents. On June 25th 2009, the Cabinet also created and
approved the position of the Chairperson of the UIDAI, and appointed Mr. Nandan Nilekani as
the first Chairperson in the rank and status of a Cabinet Minister. Mr. Ram Sewak Sharma
has been appointed the Director General. The Registrars that the Unique Identification
Authority of India (UIDAI) plans to partner with in its first phase include-National Rural
Employment Guarantee Act; Rashtriya Swasthya Bima Yojana; Public Distribution
System. UID will bridge rich-poor divide, says Nilekani: Maintaining that the biggest challenge
the country faces today is of an identity divide, UIDAI chief Nandan Nilekani said that a lack of
identity has denied the poor and the marginalized a chance to effectively participate in
economic growth.
• Rajya Sabha Chairman Hamid Ansari will shortly reconstitute the three-member
committee probing the allegations of land grab, encroachment and purchase of property
against Karnataka High Court Chief Justice P.D. Dinakaran. The present committee is
headed by Justice V.S. Sirpurkar of the Supreme Court. The Chief Justice of the Bombay High
Court, Justice A.R. Dave, and senior advocate P.P. Rao are the other members. Under the
Rules, one of the members must be a High Court Chief Justice and with Justice Dave's
proposed elevation, the committee should be reconstituted with another member. Justice
Dinakaran has not been performing judicial functions since December last and he has been
recommended for being shifted, as the Chief Justice of the Sikkim High Court. The Supreme
Court collegium has stuck to its recommendation to shift Karnataka High Court Chief
Justice P.D. Dinakaran as Chief Justice of the Sikkim High Court.
• The Planning Commission announced the setting up of an 18-member expert committee
headed by Prime Minister's Economic Advisory Council Chairman C. Rangarajan to
recommend measures for efficient management of public expenditure.
• E N Rammohan, former director-general of BSF, submitted his report on the Dantewada
massacre, which left 76 security personnel dead.
• Ketan Desai, president of the Medical Council of India, and three others were arrested by
the CBI in a Rs.2-crore bribery case, were remanded to five-day police custody by a Patiala
House court, Delhi. In December 2009, the Medical Council of India in consultation with
the Ministry of Health and Family Welfare amended the Indian Medical Council
(Professional Conduct, Etiquette and Ethics) Regulations, 2002, prohibiting doctors
from accepting gifts, travel facility, hospitality, cash or monetary grants or any other favour
from any pharmaceutical and allied health sector industry for self or family members. Union
Health Minister Ghulam Nabi Azad constituted a three-member team to probe irregularities
committed by the Medical Council of India (MCI) and stayed the permission it granted to
the Gyan Sagar Medical College in Punjab to take a fresh batch of students for 2010-11. K.
Desiraju, Additional Secretary of the Health and Family Welfare Department, will head the
fact-finding committee, which has All-India Institute of Medical Sciences (AIIMS) dean Rani
Kumar and a senior officer of the Directorate-General of Health Services (DGHS) as its other
members. The committee has been directed to submit its report within a week.
• Representatives of Rajasthan's Special OBCs led by Gujjar leader Kirori Singh Bainsla met
the members of the Justice I. S. Israni Committee constituted to look into the ongoing
agitation by the Gujjars and other affected communities on five per cent special reservation
for them.
• The Home Secretary Ardhendu Sen committee set up to probe the February 15 Maoist
attack on the police camp at Silda in West Bengal's Pashim Medinipur district has
submitted its report to the Chief Secretary. The committee inquired into the circumstances that
led to the Maoist attack on the police camp that claimed the lives of 24 EFR jawans.

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• State News: The Central Water Commission (CWC) has finally convened a meeting of officials
of Andhra Pradesh and Maharashtra in New Delhi on May 12 to discuss the grievance of
A.P. that the latter is illegally constructing 13 barrages across the Godavari.
• Andhra Pradesh government declared that two nuclear energy parks at Kovvada
(Srikakulam district) and Nizampatnam (Guntur) are to be established with a whopping
investment of over Rs. 1,50,000 crore. The Atomic Minerals Directorate had carried out
exploration for uranium in the Kadapa basin and indicated that uranium-mineralisation
extends over a belt of 160 km. M/s Uranium Corporation of India Limited (UCIL) is
planning to establish a uranium-based plant in Pulivendula. The government had granted
mining lease over an extent of 800 hectares for a period of 30 years. A.P. has the largest
reserves of over 60,000 tonnes of uranium. S.K. Jain, CMD, Nuclear Power Corporation of
India Limited (NPCIL). Srikumar Banerjee is Chairman, Atomic Energy Commission (AEC).
• Kerala has been adjudged the best State in the country in devolving powers to local self-
government institutions.
• Tamil Nadu government is taking steps to declare as "protected areas" the entire hills
that house historical monuments.
• Power from first unit of the Kudankulam Nuclear Power Project (KKNPP) by
December 2010. KKNPP is located in Tamil Nadu. The nuclear reactors are being built with
the help of Atomstroyexport of Russia.
• Decades of violent insurgency in Assam have forced many women, including homemakers,
to take to prostitution after their husbands or close family members were killed or
maimed in terror attacks.
• Drivers of 50 taxis plying between Imphal and the Thoubal market, a distance of about 35
km, staged a sat-in protest at the market. The drivers told journalists that the eight banned
underground organisations had asked them to pay a tax of Rs.1,000 each to all the outfits
• Maharashtra Chief Minister Ashok Chavan called upon the Union government to resolve the
State's border issue with Karnataka. Maharashtra was formed on May 1, 1960.
• Gujarat celebrated the golden jubilee of the statehood.
• The Gujarat State government has announced wage rise for almost all categories of its
employees on the occasion of "Golden Gujarat¨ celebrations to mark the golden jubilee of the
State's existence on May 1. For the first time, the Gujarat government also decided to pay
compensatory wages, as recommended by the Commission, to police personnel working
on public holidays. The decision would be implemented retrospectively from April 2009.
• In a bid to refurbish the image of her party, Uttar Pradesh Chief Minister Mayawati expelled
nearly 500 Bahujan Samaj Party workers with alleged criminal antecedents and directed
the party coordinators to submit another list containing the names of tainted persons on May
13 for further action.
• Madhya Pradesh Chief Minister Shivraj Singh Chauhan has appealed to the Centre to revoke
the Union Environment and Forests Ministry's "arbitrary order" to suspend work on the
Maheshwar hydro-electric project, alleging that it was "agenda-driven¨. The Ministry had
imposed the condition that two wildlife sanctuaries be created to compensate for
submergence at Maheshwar, when there was no forest land or wildlife in the area to be
• The Bharatiya Janata Party announced its intention to start serious negotiations for
formation of a government in Jharkhand minus the incumbent Chief Minister, Shibu Soren.
Shibu Soren had recently voted in favour of cut motion in Lok Sabha.
• The Chandigarh administration, in a press note has apologised for addressing students
living in slum areas as `slum dogs.'
• Miscellaneous: Prime Minister Manmohan Singh called for a major overhaul of the legal
education system in the country to bring it in tune with needs of the present day economy
and society.
• A meeting of about 60 'Khap panchayats' (community councils) demanded amendments
in the Hindu Marriage Act to prevent marriages within the same 'gotra' (clan) and

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• Judicial Pronouncements: The Supreme Court declined to vacate its stay order restraining
the French company Lafarge from conducting mining operations in Meghalaya. Earlier, SC
insisted that limestone mining in Meghalaya's dense forest by French multinational Lafarge for
its cement plant could not be resumed without an environmental impact assessment
(EIA). Lafarge Umiam Mining, a subsidiary of the French giant Lafarge, has been accused
of ignoring the Supreme Court's stay on its mining activities in Shella in the East Khasi Hills
of Meghalaya. The Lafarge mine provides limestone for the company's cement plant across
the border in Bangladesh.
• The Supreme Court has ruled that in rape cases corroboration is not required if the
victims are illiterate as their testimony can be accepted in toto even if the FIR is
lodged belatedly.
• The Supreme Court has sought the response of the Uttar Pradesh government to Janata Party
president Subramanian Swamy's application seeking a direction for removal of
restrictions on darshan of Lord Rama at the makeshift temple at Ayodhya.
• The Supreme Court, while upholding the constitutional validity of the Maharashtra Control
of Organised Crime Act (MCOCA), has held that the State Legislature had the competence to
include offences relating to "insurgency¨ under the ambit of the Act.
• In a big relief to actor Kushboo, the Supreme Court set aside a Madras High Court judgment
directing the chief metropolitan magistrate, Egmore, to conduct a joint trial of the 23
complaints filed against her under Sections 499 and 500 of the Indian Penal Code
(criminal defamation) in various places in Tamil Nadu for her alleged remarks on pre-
marital sex.
• The Madras High Court upheld the power of the State to bring in a school system common
to all in the interest of social justice and quality education. However, it struck down sections
11, 12 and 14 of the Uniform System of School Education Act, 2010.
• Chief Minister M. Karunanidhi called upon the Supreme Court and the Madras High Court to
take steps to make Tamil the language of the Madras High Court.
• The Bombay High Court sought a clarification from the government on the "code of
conduct" for Ministers and heads of government establishments holding positions in profit-
earning institutions like the Board of Control for Cricket in India. The court also asked
Maharashtra to reply on May 5 on tax exemption for the Indian Premier League. The court
was hearing a public interest petition filed by Shiv Sena MLA Subhash Desai.
• The Nagpur bench of Bombay High Court has issued a notice to Maharashtra revenue
minister Narayan Rane for allegedly helping a city-based industrialist grabbing a plot of land
• The Gujarat High Court directed the State government to pay compensation to and rehabilitate
45 families, most of them victims of the 2002 communal riots, within a week.
• The Communist Party of India (Marxist) urged the government to aptly compensate Syed
Maqbool Shah, who was recently acquitted by a Delhi court in the Lajpat Nagar bomb
blast case in Delhi after spending 14 years in jail.
• A Delhi court accepted the CBI's report that senior Congress leader Jagdish Tytler played
no role in a 1984 anti-Sikh riot near a gurdwara at Pulbangash in north Delhi in the
aftermath of the assassination of Prime Minister Indira Gandhi on October 31 that year.
• The Central Information Commission (CIC) has held that the Centre cannot claim any
immunity or privilege from disclosing the correspondence between the former President, A.P.J.
Abdul Kalam, and the then Prime Minister, Atal Bihari Vajpayee, on the Padma awards. The CIC
rejected the claim of the Prime Minister's Office (PMO) that such information was privileged
communication under Article 74 (2) of the Constitution and hence could not be disclosed.
Article 74 (2) says: the question whether any, and if so what, advice was tendered by the
Council of Ministers to the President shall not be inquired into in any court. Chief
Information Commissioner Wajahat Habibullah - in his order on an appeal from rights activist
Subash Agrawal - directed the Central Public Information Officer (CPIO), PMO, to provide
information on the letter dated January 22, 2004, addressed by Mr. Kalam to Mr. Vajpayee on
the Padma awards, and a copy of the correspondence on the subject between the PMO and the
President's Secretariat.

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• A fast track court in Phulbani, Orissa had sentenced three persons (Iswar Dondia , Kamdev
Pradhan and Balaji Pradhan ) to five-year rigorous imprisonment and imposed a fine of Rs
2,000 on each of them for their involvement in violence in Kandhamal district in 2008.
• Defence, Space, Nuclear, Science and Technology: NS Shivalik, India's first indigenous
stealth frigate commissioned at Mazagon Dock Limited in Mumbai.
• The army is planning to procure short-range surface to air missile (SRSAM) system, 20
km-range, to counter threats to cities and important installations in the country from enemy
aircraft and missiles.
• Pilot production of the air-launched version of the India-Russia BrahMos missile has
started in Russia in line with plans to fit it in the IAF's Su-30MKI fighter aircraft by 2012.
The first few missiles for factory tests have been manufactured at the Strela production
association in the Orenburg Region. Russia's Irkut Corporation manufactures Sukhoi
aircraft. The sea and ground-launch versions of BrahMos missiles have already been
successfully tested and put into service by the Indian Army and Navy. With a range of 290
km, the missile will allow the pilot to hit enemy vessels while staying well outside the reach of
their air defences. Travelling at a top speed of Mach 2.8 barely 3-4 metres above the sea
surface, the missile cannot be intercepted by any known weapon system in the world. So
far, the missiles have been assembled at the Strela plant, and manufacturing facilities are
also being set up in Thiruvananthapuram with Russian assistance. BrahMos Aerospace, a
joint venture between India and Russia, has started designing a hypersonic version of the
BrahMos missile, BrahMos-II.
• The smallest Indian satellite, promising to send Indian education into a higher orbit, will
leave the ISRO Satellite Centre in Bangalore and move to Sriharikota for integration with the
four-stage Polar Satellite Launch Vehicle (PSLV) for launch postponed to June 2010.
StudSat was designed and developed by about 40 undergraduate students of seven
engineering colleges in Bangalore and Hyderabad and weighs only 850 grams. StudSat,
an acronym for student satellite, has been classified as a pico-satellite, which weighs
between 0.1 and 1kg. StudSat will be launched along with the indigenous Cartosat-2b
satellite, Alsat, a satellite from Algeria and two satellites from the University of Toronto.
• The inhalable measles vaccine won't be available in India very soon. The vaccine, that
promises to immunise children through a single deep breath, will first have to undergo
separate clinical trials in India to "confirm its effectiveness here" before its use is allowed in the
Business and Indian Economy
• World: In an acknowledgement of China's growing economic clout, the World Bank has
significantly increased its voting rights, making the world's fastest growing economy its third
biggest member after US and Japan. With member nations of the financial institution agreeing
to shift its decision-making powers slightly towards the emerging economies, China was the
biggest benefactor with its voting power increased to 4.42 per cent from 2.77 per cent. China
for the first time has contributed in the last IDA (International Development
Association) completed at the end of 2007, IDA15. The voting power of India, which
was at par with China with 2.77 per cent, has increased to 2.91 per cent, while Brazil's voting
power has risen from 2.06 per cent to 2.24 per cent. The US, the world's largest economy,
remained at the No 1 spot at 15.85 per cent, effectively giving it veto power, followed by
Japan at 6.84 per cent. Robert Zoellick is President, World Bank.
• Highest paid CEOs of the 500 biggest American companies list compiled by the
Forbes: With a total compensation of USD 141.36 million, H Lawrence Culp Jr, the chief of
the diversified manufacturing and technology firm Danaher, is at the top of the list. The list of
the 500 CEOs of the biggest American companies features as many as three India-origin
people -- Nooyi (93rd position), diagnostics entity Quest Diagnostics' Surya N Mohapatra
(96) and software major Adobe Systems' Shantanu Narayen at 425th slot.
• Standard & Poor's downgraded Portugal's five main banks to reflect its earlier downgrade of
the Portugal's sovereign rating.
• US saw 64 bank collapses in just 4 months.
• Greece, which is bogged down by an intensifying debt crisis, has agreed to a 24 billion
euros austerity package that includes wage cuts for public sector employees.

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• Israel lifts ban on imports of Apple iPad.
• Charlie Brown. EW Scripps Co is selling the unit that owns the rights to Snoopy, Charlie
Brown and the rest of the Peanuts gang for $175 million to Iconix Brand Group Inc.
• Toyota is recalling 100,000 Corolla model cars sold in Brazil over acceleration problems.
• Berkshire Hathaway CEO Warren Buffett said that he has no plans to sell his company's
stake in Goldman Sachs Group Inc. as the investment bank fights civil fraud charges.
• UAL Corp's United Airlines and Continental Airlines Inc are expected to announce that
they are merging to form the world's largest airline.
• Agencies & Bodies: The Lok Sabha passed the Finance Bill for 2010-11, with a special
relief package for coffee growers, and tax concessions for healthcare, auto and realty sectors,
but without any change in the levies on petroleum products. The bill brought reduction in
excise on craft paper to 4 percent & reduced the counterveiling duty on waste paper to 4
percent. The bill has exempted from service tax the air travel to and from the north-eastern
states. In the budget speech delivered Feb 26,2010, Pranab Mukherjee, Finance Minister,
India, had proposed to restore the basic duty of 5 percent on crude oil, 7.5 percent each
on diesel and petrol, and 5 percent on other petroleum products. He also proposed sought
to hike excise on petrol and diesel by Rs.1. In the budget proposals, air travel on economy
class was also sought to be brought into the service tax net. The government was already
imposing such a tax on business and first class air travel.
• Leading pharmaceutical firms such as Cipla, Ranbaxy, Pfizer, Dr Reddy's are among the
firms pulled up by the drug price regulator National Pharmaceuticals Pricing Authority
(NPPA) for overcharging.
• Coffee exports from India, Asia's third biggest producer, rose by 42% to 1,00,574
tonnes in the first four months of 2010 on strong global demand and domestic supplies,
according to the Coffee Board of India. Companies such as Tata Coffee, Nestle and NKG
Jayanti Coffee Pvt Ltd shipped maximum quantity to Italy (27,970 tonnes), Russia (12,646
tonnes) and Germany (9,442 tonnes). The Coffee Board of India is an autonomous body,
functioning under the Ministry of Commerce and Industry, Government of India.
• RBI Governor Subbarao optimistic on India's return to high growth.
• Make phone banking more secure or face penalty: RBI to banks. The Reserve Bank has
asked all the banks operating in the country to put in place by next year a system where credit
and debit card customers would need to provide an additional password for IVR
• National Association of Software and Services Companies (NASSCOM) to push for more SEZ
space for small, medium IT players.
• PSU/PSE/Private: NTPC-BHEL Power Projects Ltd. (NBPPL) signed an agreement with
its equal joint venture partners NTPC and BHEL to meet the target of order bookings worth
Rs.7,000-crore in the current financial year. NBPPL has been jointly set up by NTPC and BHEL
for capacity building in manufacturing of power plant equipment. The MoU was signed by NTPC
Chairman R. S. Sharma, BHEL Chairman and Managing Director B. P. Rao and NBPPL
Chairman and Managing Director C. P. Singh. NBPPL will be setting up manufacturing
facilities in Andhra Pradesh. It has already taken up EPC work for Namrup gas-based
project of 100 MW in Assam and Palatana gas-based project of 726 MW in Tripura. The
company expects EPC order booking of more than Rs. 7,000 crore by the end of this year. It
will also take up execution of 500 MW Singrauli thermal power plant and 600 MW
thermal power plant at Rayalseema of Andhra Pradesh Power Generation Corporation Ltd.
• Generation utility NTPC is considering setting up two thermal power plants in Kazakhstan as
part of its strategy to access the vast coal reserves of Central Asia's biggest economy, even as
the state-run company saw profit after tax rise only by 5.5% to Rs 8,656 crore in 2009-10 due
to lower interest income and income-tax refunds. R S Sharma, chairman, NTPC.
• SBI is introducing barcode-enabled ATM throughout the country for seamless bill
payment facility. The facility will be available in phases to over 5 crore SBI customers
across the country. The first such ATM will be rolled out in West Bengal's Mursidabad
district. SBI has tied up with Airtel and Vodafone.

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• UltraTech Cement buys ETA Star Co of Dubai: The acquisition will be carried out by
capitalising UltraTech Cement Middle East Investments, a wholly-owned subsidiary of UltraTech
Cement in the UAE.
• E.I.D. Parry (India) Limited, a part of the $3.14 billion Chennai-based Murugappa Group,
has initialled a definitive agreement with GMR Holdings Private Limited to acquire a
majority equity stake in GMR Industries Ltd., the agri-business entity of the GMR Group.
• India's software tycoon Azim Premji plans to set up a world-class university to train
teachers who will fan out to the teacher training institutes in India's 600 districts. Much like
Microsoft founder Bill Gates, Premji also plans to give away most of his money during his
lifetime. Wipro's Mission 10X initiative, is focused on making India's engineering students
more employable in the information technology industry.
• British lender Barclays has cut 250 jobs in India, while another 50 to 55 staff have been
reassigned or resigned from the bank in recent weeks.
• Mexico's Cemex - the world's third largest cement manufacturer - is mulling an India entry.
Towards this, the transnational cement manufacturer has initiated a dialogue for a possible
buyout of the privately-held Penna Cement. P Prathap Reddy is CMD of Penna Cement
• Kawasaki Heavy Industries has launched a new Indian subsidiary, India Kawasaki
Motors Pvt. Ltd. (IKM), specialising in motorcycle imports and sales.
• World: Oil is spewing from an offshore well in the Gulf of Mexico that got destroyed last
week following a deadly oil rig explosion. Any oil spill is devastating. But experts say the US
Gulf Coast -- home to 40 percent of the nation's wetlands and a multi-billion-dollar fishing
industry -- is particularly vulnerable. The surface area of a catastrophic Gulf of Mexico oil
spill quickly tripled in size amid growing fears among experts that the slick could become
vastly more devastating. The environmental mess could eclipse the Exxon Valdez disaster,
when an oil tanker spilled 11 million gallons (42 million litres) off Alaska's shores in 1989.
• Scientists have discovered that ice floating in the polar oceans is melting, causing sea
levels to rise. The research is the first assessment of how quickly floating ice is being lost.
According to Archimedes' principle, any floating object displaces its own weight of fluid. But
because of differences in the density and temperature of ice and sea water, the net effect is to
increase sea level by 2.6% of this volume, equivalent to 49 micrometers per year spread
across the global oceans. Andrew Shepherd, professor at the University of Leeds, led the
• From 1989 to 2008, global temperatures climbed on average by 0.5 Celsius (0.8
Fahrenheit), whereas the Arctic has warmed by 2.1 C (3.4 F) -- the most rapid increase of
any place on the planet. The findings show that the main driver of so-called "polar
amplification" -- warming in excess of the global average -- is shrinking ice cover, and not
increased cloudiness or changes in ocean and atmospheric circulation, as others have argued.
• Plant leaves account for less than one per cent of the Earth's emissions of methane -
which is considered to be about 25 times more effective than carbon dioxide at global
warming, suggests a research led by the University of Edinburgh.
• Mangrove species may perish in a decade: global study . The study, led by Beth A.
Polidoro attached to the Global Marine Species Assessment unit based at Old Dominion
University, Virginia, USA, shows that about 80 per cent of the mangrove areas in India and
Southeast Asia have been lost over the past 60 years. It is also estimated that almost 80 per
cent of the global fish catches are directly or indirectly dependent on mangroves. Mangroves,
occupies only 0.12 per cent of the world's total land area.
• As the BASIC nations stick to equity as a basis for future talks, former chief climate
negotiator Shyam Saran expressed doubts over the fate of Kyoto Protocol which seeks binding
emission cut targets for developed nations.
• Australian Prime Minister Kevin Rudd announced a two-year delay in government plans to
tax Australia's worst industrial polluters, a move that puts legislative efforts to curb gases
blamed for climate change on hold until after national elections.
• Bolivia will create the Mother Earth Ministry, in accordance with Cochabamba's
Declaration, which was adopted by the World People's Conference on Climate Change.

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• German climate experts say the past harsh winter in Europe and North America does not
indicate a slowing of global warming.
• A Nepalese expedition was sent on a high-risk Everest clean-up to bring down garbage left
by climbers and possibly retrieve the bodies of some who died in the "death zone¨ of the
world's highest peak. Almost 4,000 people have climbed Everest since Edmund Hillary and
Tenzing Norgay in 1953.
• Tornadoes tore through the southern US state of Mississippi, killing at least 10 people,
injuring nearly two dozen and destroying homes.
• The eruption of the Eyjafjallajokul volcano in Iceland cloaked the skies over Europe with
ash and had grounded the planes all over the continent.
• India: The Lok Sabha adopted the National Green Tribunal (NGT) Bill, 2009. It envisages
the setting up of a national tribunal, a judicial body exclusively to deal with
environmental laws and to provide citizens a right to environment. The main Bench of
the tribunal will be set up in Bhopal, "the site of humanity's one of the worst industrial
tragedies.¨ The Tribunal would have four circuit Benches. It would deal with all
environmental laws on air and water pollution, the Environment Protection Act, the Forest
Conservation Act and the Biodiversity Act. With this effort, India would join Australia and
New Zealand, which have such specialised environment tribunals.
• Minister of State for Environment and Forests Jairam Ramesh, said a Bill to set up the
National Environment Protection Authority would be introduced in the monsoon session. It
would monitor the implementation of environment laws.
• India told the United Nations that it had made a voluntary commitment to reduce the
emissions intensity of GDP by 20 to 25 per cent from 2005 levels by 2020.
• The Comptroller and Auditor General of India has said that the environment and bio-
diversity in Sikkim have been threatened by construction of hydel power projects and
absence of government safeguards.
• About 1.80-lakh rural habitations are afflicted by poor water quality leading to serious
health problems such as cancer and fluorosis that damages bones, teeth and muscles.
West Bengal is the worst-affected State in terms of arsenic contamination. "The problem is
being ignored because those who must address it consume bottled water¨.
• Haryana government plans to generate power from biodegradable waste such as
kitchen waste, garden waste and horticulture waste.
• Kaziranga National Park (Assam) has the world's highest tiger density. The report says
that the density of tigers at Kaziranga is 32.64 tigers per 100 sq.km., the highest in any known
tiger habitat. Aaranyak Wildlife Biologist M. Firoz Ahmed, who led the study, said it was
conducted using the `camera trap' method of tiger estimation and covered an area of 144 sq.
km. of the central and western parts of the park.
• Gujarat plans to get Asiatic cheetahs from Iran. Iran was the only country where the
Asiatic cheetahs were still found, but there too their numbers had dwindled to less than a
hundred. Two pairs of African cheetahs kept in Sakkarbagh zoo show no signs of breeding.
State against shifting a few Asiatic lions to Kuno Palpur , Madhya Pradesh from the Gir
forest. The Dangs forest of Gujarat had earlier boasted of a few tigers, but the State
government would need to undertake a detailed study of the reasons why they had
• The 13th lion census, or the "lion population estimation¨ as preferred by the Forest
Department, began at the only abode of the Asiatic lions - the Gir forests in the Saurashtra
region of Gujarat. The lion population in the 2005 census was put at 359 (plus-minus 10).
• Flood situation unchanged in Assam.
• Paulos Mar Gregorios Award 2010 was presented to Dr. Karan Singh for Outstanding
Contribution in the Fields of Public Life, Inter-Faith Dialogue and Culture.
• "Lord of the Rings" films, director Peter Jackson's investiture ceremony in the New Zealand
capital Wellington -- his home town and business base -- installed him as a Knight
Companion of the New Zealand Order of Merit. Knighthoods were abolished in New
Zealand by the previous centre-left government in 2000 but were reinstated last year after the
election of Prime Minister John Key's centre-right government.

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Person in News-World
• Political
• Anthony Lake, a former US national security advisor, formally took over as executive
director of the UN Children's Fund, pledging to uphold the rights of children everywhere.
• Hugo Chavez, Venezuelan President has announced that he would join micro-blogging site
• Even as British government decided to withdraw former Pakistan ruler Pervez Musharraf's
privileges after a UN inquiry report blamed his government for Benazir Bhutto's
assassination in 2007, Islamabad has refused to follow suit.
• South African President Jacob Zuma declared himself free of the deadly HIV virus, as he
launched a drive to combat the disease in the world's worst-affected country.
• Jyri Hakamies, Defence Minister of Finland, visited India to discuss bilateral defence material
• The Chinese government has removed Wang Lequan, the powerful head of its western
Muslim-majority Xinjiang region.
• Pauline Hanson, a former right-wing leader in Australia, has ignited a controversy by openly
declaring that she would not sell her property to Asians who lived overseas, and to Muslims.
• The United States extradited former Panamanian strongman Manuel Noriega to France to
face money-laundering charges after years of legal wrangling.
• Social and Cultural
• Reiko Tsushima is senior specialist, gender equality and women workers' rights, International
Labour Organisation, sub-regional for South Asia.
• Lisa Kaltenegger of the Harvard-Smithsonian Centre for Astrophysics, heads the team
evaluating JWST's planet-hunting capabilities. James Webb Space Telescope (JWST).
• Italian designer Giorgio Armani opened his first hotel at the world's tallest tower in Dubai
giving a boost to the Gulf Arab emirate's bid to recover from a debt crisis.
• Others
• South Korean climber Oh Eun-sun became the first woman to have summited all the 14
peaks over 8000m.
• Pakistan and U.S. intelligence wrongly reported the death of Hakimullah Mehsud, the head of
the Pakistani Taliban in a CIA drone strike and he is now believed to be alive.
Person in News- India
• Judicial, Political and Administrative: Rajasthan Governor Prabha Rau died in Delhi
following a heart attack.
• President Pratibha Patil has appointed senior-most judge of the Supreme Court Justice Sarosh
Homi Kapadia the 38
Chief Justice of India (CJI). He will take charge on May 12,
succeeding Justice K.G. Balakrishnan, who retires on May 11.
• Jharkhand High Court Chief Justice Gyan Sudha Misra is the fourth woman judge of the
Supreme Court after Justices Fatima Beevi, Sujata Manohar, and Ruma Pal, who retired in
June 2006.
• Opposition demanded the dismissal of Communications Minister A. Raja, citing reports in a
section of the press that alleged the involvement of a corporate lobbyist in the 2G spectrum
allocation in 2008 and a massive loss to the exchequer.
• Karnataka's food and civil supplies minister Haratalu Halappa resigned following a newspaper
report that he had tried to sexually assault his friend's wife.
• Major General C.S. Nair took over as the 14th Judge Advocate General (JAG) of the
• Seemant Kumar Singh takes charge as Mangalore City Police Commissioner.
• Deputy Commissioner of Police Abhay Chudasama was arrested in connection with the
Sohrabuddin Sheikh fake encounter case. This is the first arrest by the CBI in the case.
• Business: The Aditya Birla Group, which is a global leader in viscose staple fibre (VSF), has
appointed K K Maheshwari as the new global head of VSF and pulp in place of Shailendra
Jain, who has retired as whole-time director and president of Grasim Industries.
• Social and Cultural: Kulwant Roy- Photojournalist
• "Papa¨ John Wakefield, the torchbearer of Karnataka's first eco-tourism project - the
Kabini River Lodge on the banks of the Kabini at Karapur in Mysore district - passed away.

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• In deference to the wishes of Union Minister of State for Minority Affairs Salman Khursheed
that the Prince of Arcot Nawab Mohammed Abdul Ali should continue to be on the Ajmer
Dargah Committee, the Nawab has withdrawn his resignation.
• A sculpture by contemporary artist Subodh Gupta using brass and stainless steel utensils
fetched $80,000, the second highest price at a Christie's auction which was billed as the first-
of-its-kind green charity sale.
• Others Madhuri Gupta, the Indian diplomat was arrested on charges of spying for
Pakistan's ISI.
• Devendra Gupta having alleged links with a Hindu militant outfit has been arrested by
Rajasthan police in connection with the 2007 Ajmer Dargah bomb blast, in which three
people were killed and over 30 injured.
NRI & PIO News
• Influential US senator Christopher Dodd was presented "Friend of India Award" by the
Connecticut unit of Global Organization of People of Indian Origin at its Annual Awards
Banquet on May 2, 2010.
• An Indian-origin man, Imtiaz Sooliman, who started the Gift of the Givers Foundation
(humanitarian aid organisation) that has provided relief to people worldwide has received
one of South Africa's highest honours, the Order of the Baobab in Silver from South
African President Jacob Zuma.
• UN chief Ban Ki-moon has appointed Atul Khare of India as Assistant Secretary-General
for Peacekeeping Operations.
• Sir Mota Singh QC, first Indian-origin Sikh to be knighted this year by the Queen for his
services to the administration of justice in the UK, has been chosen for the Pride of Sikh
Community Award.
• P. Kamalanathan, an ethnic Indian won a prestigious parliamentary by-election, giving a
boost to the Malaysian Indian Congress (MIC) that claims to speak for the 1.7 million
• A Canadian Court (Superior Court) Justice Steven Rogin has refused to allow Sukdev Singh
Kooner, a Sikh religious leader to enter into the courtroom with kirpan, a symbol of Sikh
religion, saying it "could be used as a weapon". Canada's Supreme Court has ruled students
may carry kirpans in public schools provided the dagger is sewn into a sheath. Kirpans are
also allowed in the House of Commons, in the Supreme Court building. While banned on
airplanes, they are allowed on trains in Canada.
• British-based steel magnate Lakshmi Mittal topped the list of Britain's richest people once
• Indians on death row a mockery of justice: Amnesty International to UAE. The
seventeen Indian migrants, all from Punjab, were sentenced to death on March 29, 2010,
three months after their arrest, after being convicted by a Sharjah Shariah court for killing a
Pakistani national.
• Mohammed Azhar Ali, an Indian, who works as a senior engineer with an architectural firm
in Dubai, has bagged a million dirhams as a prize in a lucky draw.
• Vajinder Toor, a Yale University doctor, was shot dead outside his home by a former
colleague Lishan Wang, a Chinese national.
• An NRI doctor couple (Dr. Arun Sharma (56) and Dr. Kiran Sharma (54)) has been
convicted of conspiring to commit health care fraud over a 10-year-period in Texas and will
give up millions in assets.
Places in News
• Barcelona is the capital and the most populous city of the Autonomous Community of
Catalonia and the second largest city in Spain.
• China begins construction of new nuclear power plant in Changjiang County of Hainan
• At least 55 people were killed and 85 wounded in fighting between the south Sudan Army
and Arab nomads from the western region of Darfur.
• Alappuzha to honour its architect. Preparations are on to erect a statue of Raja Kesavadas
(Diwan (1745-1799)) in Alappuzha (Kerala), which owes its beautiful canals, its planned
parallel roads and a major share of its history to him.

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• Archaeological excavators looking for remains of Muziris, an ancient port city of Pattanam in
Kerala, found 18 wooden pegs that might throw light on the life and times of people who lived
there several centuries ago. P.J. Cherian is the head of the Pattanam excavations that are
conducted by the Kerala Council for Historical Research (KCHR).
• Director-General of the Indian Council of Medical Research (ICMR) V.M. Katoch has said there
was a "weak" link between the recent death of some tribal girls reported in Khammam
district of Andhra Pradesh and the pilot project taken up by an NGO on the vaccination of
adolescent girls against cervical cancer.
• More than 100 houses have been burnt down at Nanoor in Birbhum district of West Bengal
on account of political rivalries.
• For the first time in the history of the Kumbh Mela, scientists used satellite data to arrive
at an authentic figure of the number pilgrims taking dip in the Ganges at Haridwar -- which
was 1.66 crore on April 14, 2010.
Books & Authors
• Fred Halliday, scholar of international relations, has died of cancer. He was an Irish
academic whose main interest was West Asia and its place in international politics. His
first major book, Arabia Without Sultans, was published in 1974.
• World: Dubai's ruler says the Arab emirate is still considering a bid to host the Olympics in
• Champions League moves to S Africa: Cricket Australia chief James Sutherland and
Cricket South Africa CEO Gerald Majola attended the meeting where Indian board president
Shashank Manohar and secretary N Srinivasan were also present.
• The United States advanced to a Fed Cup final rematch with defending champion Italy.
• Spain's fifth seed Fernando Verdasco defeated Swedish second seed Robin Soderling to
win the Barcelona Open claycourt singles title. In doubles, Daniel Nestor and Nenad
Zimonjic bt Llyeton Hewitt and Mark Knowles.
• World champion (Chess) Viswanathan Anand retained a full point lead over challenger
Vaselin Topalov after drawing the fifth game of the World Championship being held at
Sofia, Bulgaria.
• Indian top stars Joshna Chinappa and Dipika Pallikal have joined title favourite Nicol
David in the quarterfinals of the women's section in the 15th Asian Squash championships.
• American cyclist Lance Armstrong is a testicular cancer survivor and seven time Tour de
France champion.
• India: In an attempt to raise India's game on the sporting field, the sports and youth
affairs ministry wants a compulsory games and physical education class in schools
every day.
• A report by the Comptroller and Auditor General (CAG) of India has criticised
Maharashtra government for 'insufficient initiatives in the development of sports'.
• In the eye of the raging Indian Premier League (IPL) storm, Union Agriculture Minister Sharad
Pawar rubbished the charge that the Nationalist Congress Party (NCP) and his ministerial
colleague Praful Patel were involved in any alleged wrongdoing relating to the T20 league.
• Opposition demands Joint Parliamentary Committee (JPC) probe into Indian Premier League
(IPL) irregularities.
• The Board of Control for Cricket in India (BCCI) suspended Lalit Modi as Chairman of the
Indian Premier League, and also perhaps as vice-president of the Board, under BCCI Rules
and Regulations of 32 (vii) (misconduct and procedure to deal with). Baroda Cricket
Association president Chirayu Amin was appointed the interim chairman of the
Indian Premier League in place of Lalit Modi.
• Sahara Pune Warriors is new IPL team.
• IPL-III Awards: Mumbai Indians captain Sachin Tendulkar was named `best batsman' while
Deccan Chargers' Pragyan Ojha bagged the `best bowler' honour. Royal Challengers
Bangalore beat Deccan Charges by nine wickets to finish third in the IPL and also qualify for
the Champions League Twenty20 tournament.
• Jyoti Randhawa and Shiv Kapur are Indian golfers.

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• Somdev Devvarman, Yuki Bhambri, Prakash Amritraj, Leander Paes, Mahesh
Bhupathi Rohan Bopanna and Sania Mirza are lawn tennis players.

From the Past
• India has signed the Free Trade Agreement (FTA) on 13 August 2009 in goods with
ASEAN. As per the India-ASEAN FTA, 35% minimum per cent of value addition in the
exporter country is necessary as to qualify the goods with regard to the 'Rules of Origin'.
The safeguard duties as per the FTA between India and ASEAN may be put in place for a
period of up to four years. India and ASEAN has set the deadline for scrapping the `sensitive´
list to 2019. ASEAN has accepted the `negative list´ concept in its FTAs with India.
• India is the first country to which Egypt has offered to allow to set up a "Special Zone"
along the Suez Canal development area.
• Oman is the first Gulf Cooperation Council (GCC) country with which India has developed
defence ties.
• Moon Impact Probe (MIP) was indigenously developed by India. Moon Mineralogy
Mapper (M3), was supplied by the United States. They are Chandrayaan instrument.
• Glycine, a type of Amino acid has been traced for the first time in the samples of an icy
comet obtained from the Stardust mission. The astronomers of NASA Goddard Space
Flight Center had claimed to have found an amino acid on a comet.
• Bills, Legislations, Policies, Executive Orders: Article 130- Seat of Supreme Court.
• Rajya Sabha passed Women's Reservation Bill (108th constitutional amendment bill)
with votes 191-1 to reserve one-third of seats in Parliament and State Assemblies for women.
Sharad Joshi of the Swatanatra Bharat Paksh was the lone naysayer. The bill was earlier
introduced as 81st Constitutional Amendment Bill in 1996 & 84th Constitutional Amendment
Bill in 1998 but failed to get passed.
• The Constitution (109th Amendment) Bill 2009 relates to extending the nomination of
Anglo-Indian communities to the Lok Sabha and State assemblies by another 10 years.
• The Constitution (One Hundred and Tenth Amendment) Bill, 2009 deals with increasing
reservation for women at all tiers of the panchayati raj system from 33 to at least 50 per
cent by amending Article 243(D) of the Constitution. (This data is right).
• The Constitution (One Hundred and Eleventh Amendment) Bill, 2009 deal with
incorporation of special provisions relating to cooperative societies enabling them to
become autonomous. (This data is right).
• The Constitution (One Hundred and Twelfth Amendment) Bill, 2009 deals with
increasing reservation for women in municipalities from 33 to at least 50 per cent by
amending Article 243(T) of the Constitution.
• Polity: Amendment Act: Related to: 88(2003):inserted Article 268A-Service Tax;
89(2003):Article 338 amended & Inserted (Article 338A: there shall be National
Commission for ST created); 90(2003): related with Bodoland Territorial Area District;
91(2003): Total number of ministers; 92(2003): 4 languages in Schedule VIII;
93(2005):reservation in educational institution ; 94(2006):In Article 164, clause (1),
word `Bihar´ was substituted with "Chhattisgarh¨ & "Jharkhand¨.
• 21
(1967)- Sindhi Language was included in the Eighth Schedule.
• 71
(1992)- Konkani, Manipuri & Nepali languages were included in the Eighth Schedule.
• 92
(2003)- Bodo, Dogri, Maithili & Santhali languages were included in the Eighth
• Presently, total languages in the Eighth Schedule of Indian Constitution are 22.
• 61
(1989)¬The Act provides for reducing voting age from 21 to 18 years.
• 77
(1995) Article 16 (4A) was inserted to provide for reservation in promotion for the
Scheduled Castes and the Scheduled Tribes.
• The SCs & STs have been enjoying the facility of reservation in promotion since 1955. The
Supreme Court in its judgment dated 16th November 1992 in the case of Indira Sawhney
and others vs. Union of India and others, however, observed that reservation of
appointments or posts under Article 16(4) of the Constitution is confined to initial
appointment and cannot extend to reservation in the matter of promotion.

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• 81
(2000) Unfilled vacancies of a year which were reserved for the Scheduled Castes and
the Scheduled Tribes for being filled up in that year in accordance with any provision for
reservations made under Article 16 of the Constitution, shall be considered as a separate
class of vacancies to be filled up in any succeeding year or years, and such class of vacancies
shall not be considered together with the vacancies of the year in which they were filled up
for determining the ceiling of fifty per cent reservation against total number of vacancies
of that year.
• 85
(2001)¬This Act amended article 16(4A) of the Constitution to provide for
consequential seniority in the case of promotion by virtue of rule of reservation for the
Government servants belonging to the Scheduled Castes and the Scheduled Tribes. It also
provides retrospective effect from 17th day of June 1995.
• 86
(2002) -The Act deals with insertion of a new article 21A after article 21. The new
article 21A deals with Right to Education-"The State shall provide free and compulsory
education to all children of the age of six to fourteen years in such manner as the State may,
by law, determine¨. Substitution of new Article for Article 45. For Article 45 of the Constitution,
the following article shall be substituted, namely, Provision for early childhood care and
education to children below the age of six years. Article 45: "The State shall endeavour to
provide early childhood care and education for all children until they complete the age of six
years.¨ Article 51A of the Constitution was amended and a new clause (k) was added after
clause (j), namely, "(k) who is a parent or guardian to provide opportunities for education
to his child or, as the case may be, ward between the age of six and fourteen years.¨
• 1
(1950) Reasonable restriction on Fundamental Rights. Inserted Articles, 31A and 31B and
the Ninth Schedule to give protection from challenge to land reform laws.
• 52
(1985). Inserted Schedule 10 containing anti- defection provisions. Member of
Parliament or a State Legislature who defects or is expelled from the party which set him up as
a candidate in the election or if an independent member of the House joins a political party
after expiry of six months from the date on which he takes seat in the House shall be
disqualified to remain a member of the House. The Act also makes suitable provisions with
respect to splits in and merger of political parties.
• The UPA government raises reservation for women in urban local bodies and Municipalities
from 33 to at least 50 per cent. Nod to amend Article 243(T) of the Constitution. For the
first time in independent India, a PM addressed the nation on a specific law. PM
Manmohan Singh took the Right to Education cause with the people of India on April
1,2010 the day the RTE Act comes into effect as a Fundamental Right. The law
specifies the minimum norms in government schools and provides for reservation of
25 per cent seats in private schools for children from poor families, and prohibits
unrecognised schools. Schools must be community-managed and the government
would begin providing funds for setting up neighbourhood schools. The 86th
Constitutional amendment making education a fundamental right was passed by
Parliament in 2002. The Right of Children to Free and Compulsory Education Act, a
law to enable the implementation of the fundamental right, was passed by Parliament
in 2009. Both the Constitutional amendment and the new law came into force from April 1,
2010. HRD minister Kapil Sibal said that all private and minority schools have to
reserve 25 percent seats in elementary education (from classes 1 to 8) for
underprivileged children, and any breach of the Right to Education act will fetch
punishment. The reservation would start in Class only from 2011. Moreover, the schools
will not be allowed to segregate students from the disadvantage community in any
• India launched the task of counting its teeming billion-plus population, with 2.5 million
people set to fan out over the country to begin work for the 2011 census. C.
Chandramouli is Census Commissioner. The census will collect biometric data on every
person, to be used in a new National Population Register. Data collected for the
National Population Register will in turn facilitate the issue of the 16-digit Unique
Identity Numbers to all Indian residents. The first identity numbers are expected to be
issued by November 2010.

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• In India, government announces a minimum support price (MSP) for Wheat, Rice, Oil seeds &
• For sugarcane, "fair and remunerative price¨ (FandRP) was promulgated through an
• India announces 20-25 per cent carbon emission intensity cuts on the 2005 levels by
2020.Cotton is the India's first transgenic crop approved by Genetic Engineering Approval
Committee. Brinjal was the first transgenic vegetable approved by GEAC. However, due to
protest, moratorium was declared on Bt Brinjal production.
• The Union Cabinet has directed the Petroleum and Natural Gas Ministry to make it mandatory
for all oil marketing companies to sell petrol mixed with 5 per cent of ethanol.
• In Bangalore, the first set of Pehchan smart cards were distributed to the beneficiaries
of the Employees´ State Insurance Corporation (ESIC). The project related with the issue of
smart cards to beneficiaries of ESIC´s is entrusted to Wipro Technologies. The issue of
smart cards is part of ESIC's Information Technology Roll Out Plan named Project
• The National Mission for Female Literacy was launched to make 60 million of women
functionally literate by 2012. The National Mission for Female Literacy christened
Saakshar Bharat Mission was launched in New Delhi.
• Dolphin is declared the national aquatic animal at the first meeting of the National Ganga
River Basin Authority in New Delhi.
• NREGA renamed as Mahatma Gandhi National Rural Employment Guarantee Act after
Mahatma Gandhi on the occasion of his 140th birth anniversary.
• Committee & Commission: GEAC reporting to Union Ministry of Environment & Forests was
established under Environment (Protection) Act, 1986.
• Central Employment Guarantee Council (CEGC) is governing body for the
Mahatma Gandhi National Rural Employment Guarantee Scheme (MGNREGS).
• B. N. Srikrishna heads five-member committee on Telangana issue.
• M.B. Lal committee set up by Petroleum and Natural Gas Ministry to probe
fire in the IOCL´s fuel depot in Jaipur in October 2009, submitted report.
• PM-appointed expert committee headed by Kirit Parikh suggested freeing of
petrol and diesel prices and raising LPG and kerosene rates.
• Prime Minister of India is Ex-officio Chairperson of National Commission on Population.
• Prime Minister of India is ex-officio Chairperson of the National Ganga River Basin
Authority (NGRBA).
• Election Commission of India has allowed eunuchs and transsexuals the choice of
registering under a separate sexual identity.
• Under the Indian Constitution, the CEC can be removed from his office only through the
impeachment procedure like a judge of the Supreme Court. Any other Election
Commissioners shall not be removed from office except on the recommendation of the
• G.T. Nanavati-Akshay Mehta judicial commission is probing the Godhra train carnage and
subsequent communal riots in Gujarat in 2002.
• S. Muthukumaran headed the committee to study the possibilities of introducing equitable
standard education in schools of Tamil Nadu.
• The Justice Liberhan Commission which probed the events that led to the Babri Masjid
demolition on December 6, 1992 submitted its report to the Prime Minister Manmohan
Singh, after 16 years that saw 399 sittings and 48 extensions. It was set up on December
16, 1992.
• The Justice Muzaffar Jan Commission probing the rape-murder of two women in
Shopian submits interim report.
• The S.C. Mohapatra Commission probing the violence in Orissa's Kadhamal district in
2008 submits interim report.
• The Maharashtra government rejects the indictment of the then Mumbai Police
Commissioner Hasan Gafoor by the Ram Pradhan Committee which probed the 26/11
attacks in its action taken report.

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• The Ranganath Misra Commission recommends 10 per cent quota for Muslims in
government jobs.
• The West Bengal government has set up an 11-member committee led by former Chief
Secretary, S.N. Roy to inquire into all aspects of the devastating fire that broke out in
Stephen Court on Park Street (Kolkata) on March 23, 2010.
• Yashpal Committee has recommended the creation of a National Commission for Higher
Education and Research that will subsume as many as 13 existing professional councils and
regulatory agencies, including the University Grants Commission, the Medical Council of India
and the AICTE.
• Yashpal Committee has stressed the need for "different layers of institutions¨ in the
education sector, including State-run, private and those established under public-private
• The Centre had formed a three-member board comprising Deepak Parekh, Kiran Karnik
and C. Achutan to take charge of Satyam Computer Services.
• Personalities: Yukiya Amano, new Director-General of IAEA.
• Anders Fogh Rasmussen (former Danish PM) is current & 12
Secretary General of NATO.
• Irina Bokova, Bulgaria´s former foreign minister became the first woman to head UNESCO.
She also became the first person from the former Soviet bloc countries to be nominated to this
• Rajiv Shah as a head of USAID will be the Administrator of the federal agency responsible
for all non-military aid by the U.S.
• Marzieh Vahid Dastjerdi -Iran´s first woman Cabinet Minister. She is Health Minister.
• Belgian Prime Minister Herman Von Rompuy is elected the first European Council
President and Britain´s Catherine Ashton is named the 27-member body´s High
Representative for Foreign Affairs and Security Policy.
• Patxi Lopez, a socialist leaders has become the Basque region's first non-nationalist
President and has vowed to fight the armed separatist group ETA. ETA is a Basque militant
organisation in Spain.
• Sonia Sotomayor is the first Hispanic Associate Justice of the Supreme Court of the United
States, serving since August 2009. She is the Court's 111th justice, and its third female
• Jagannath Azad was the lyricist of the first national anthem of Pakistan.
• Ruth Padel become the first women Professor of Poetry at Oxford University in 300
years. She was forced to quit following a row over her alleged involvement in a smear
campaign against her main rival, Nobel laureate Derek Walcott.
• Carol Ann Duffy is the first female to be appointed as the Britain Poet Laureate.
• Abdul-Malik al-Houthi, leader of the Houthi group, which has been fighting Yemeni forces
in the northern Saada Mountains, proposed five-point deal to end fighting.
• Hun Kim of Republic of Korea - ADB´s new Country Director for India.
• Jonathan Schwartz- first Fortune 200 boss to tweet his resignation.
• Gowhar Rizvi has been entrusted with the task of preparing the concept note for the South
Asian University.
• Millivina Dean, the last remaining survivor of The Titanic-died.
• Meet Oliver, the first baby in the world born using a new egg-screening technique, array
comparative genomic hybridisation, is unveiled by British scientists in London.
• Yukio Hatoyama-Japan's Prime Minister
• On Pakistan´s request UN had set up a three-member commission under Chile Ambassador
to the U.N., Heraldo Munoz to probe Benazir Bhutto assassination.
• Fatima Meer passes away: She was anti- apartheid activist, writer and formidable
campaigner for human rights in South Africa. She was the first non-white woman to be
appointed in a "white" university. She wrote Nelson Mandela's first biography, Higher
Than Hope, published in 1988. Her book on Gandhiji's life, Apprenticeship of a
Mahatma, was made into the 1996 film The Making of the Mahatma.
• Salil Shetty- next secretary general of Amnesty International. He will
succeed Irene Khan in June 2010.

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• Ann-Marie Orler first woman to become- Police Adviser for the Department of
Peacekeeping Operations (UN top Cop)
• Reena Kaushal, first Indian woman to ski to the South Pole.
• Capt. Kamaljeet Singh Kalsi is the first Sikh to be allowed to go on active duty with a
turban, a beard and unshorn hair in more than 20 years in US Army.
• A new level of recognition, legitimacy: A.R. Rahman will attend a festival where the
London Philharmonic will perform his best-known works.
• Dr. Venkatraman Ramakrishnan (Structural biologist at the MRC Laboratory of
Molecular Biology in Cambridge, England. He received the 2009 Nobel Prize in
Chemistry "for studies of the structure and function of the ribosome" Padma
Vibhushan, 2010)
• Deep Joshi (recipient of 2009 Magsaysay award for Community Leadership, Padma Shri
• Navanethem Pillay (South Africa): U.N. High Commissioner for Human Rights
• Kamalesh Sharma (India): Secretary-General, Commonwealth of Nations
• Farah Pandith has been appointed by the U.S. government as Special Representative to
Muslim. She is a Kashmiri-origin Indian woman.
• Rajeev Motwani- mathematician, his contribution to the world of theoretical computer
science influenced the development of algorithm-based search technology.
• Arun Majumdar -Director of the Advanced Research Projects Agency Energy in the
U.S. Department of Energy.
• Jhumpa Lahiri- member of US President Barack Obama's Committee on the Arts
and Humanities. She received Pulitzer Prize for 'Interpreter of Maladies'. Her
other works- 'The Namesake', 'Unaccustomed Earth' .
• Sharad Chandra Sinha replaces first DG of the NIA Radha Vinod Raju.
• Preity Zinta appointed as UNAIDS ambassador.
• Amitabh Bachchan- New "brand ambassador" for Gujarat.
• Bhoodan leader Biswanath Patnaik, "Koraputia Gandhi¨ passed away.
• Congress president Sonia Gandhi was appointed Chairperson of the National Advisory
Council, four years after she quit the post in the wake of the office of profit
• Srikumar Banerjee-Chairman, Atomic Energy Commission. He will also be Secretary,
Department of Atomic Energy.
• V K Singh: New Army chief General
• Deepak Kapoor -Chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff Committee.
• Ramesh C. Deka-Director of the All India Institute of Medical Sciences.
• K.C. Verma-Research and Analysis Wing Chief
• Air Marshal D.C. Kumaria-first-ever DG Operations at Air Headquarters, New Delhi
• Arjan Singh - "Billy", battled for more than 70 years to secure a safe future for Tigers in
• Gangubai Hangal- Hindustani classical music, exponents of the Kirana Gharana
• Brown University hosted M. F. Hussain's (accomplished painter) work, who recently
accepted Qatar citizenship.
• Nandan M. Nilekani is the chairperson of the Unique Identification Authority.
• C. B. Muthamma- India's first woman career diplomat and first woman Ambassador.
• Nirmal Kumar Verma -Chief of Naval Staff
• P.S: Veeraraghavan takes over as Director, Vikram Sarabhai Space Centre,
• K. Radhakrishnan takes over as ISRO Chairman from G. Madhavan Nair.
• Harish Khare new Media Adviser to Prime Minister Manmohan Singh.Sachin Tendulkar
stroked unbeaten 200 runs in ODI cricket match against South Africa at the Roop Singh
Stadium in Gwalior. He has 93 international centuries. He is the leading run-scorer and
century maker in Test and ODI cricket.
• Binita Thakur is the first woman IPS of the elite Special Protection Group (SPG),
guarding the Prime Minister and former Prime Ministers.
• M.L. Tahaliyani -Special Judge in a case related with Mumbai terror attacks.

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• Mysore S. Rajaram, Carnatic musician
• Palghat R. Raghu, mridangam maestro
• Damal Krishnaswamy Pattammal-Indian classical music
• Ustad Ali Akbar Khan- sarod maestro
• Dr. N. P. Seshadri-eminent musicologist, noted administrator and Chairman of the
National Cultural Organisation
• Habib Tanvir, noted playwright and theatre
• Tyeb Mehta- 'a painter's painter'
• Prabhash Joshi-eminent Hindi journalist and founder editor of Jansatta
• Naresh Chandra Rajkhowa- Journalist, broke the news about the Dalai Lama's flight
from Tibet through Tawang in March 1959 in The Assam Tribune.
• T. S. Satyan-renowned photojournalist
• Karun Chandhok, second Indian to drive in F1 and he currently drives for Hispania Racing
F1 Team. Narain Karthikeyan was the first who drove for Jordan in F1.
• Adrian Sutil is a `race driver' of Force India F1. Vitantonio Liuzzi is both `test and race
driver' of Force India F1 Team.
• Awards:
• Stockholm Water Prize- Dr. Madhav Atmaram Chitale - first Indian to win. Other winners
include Sunita Narain, Professor Asit K. Biswas. Bindeshwar Pathak won the 2009
Stockholm Water Prize. He founded Sulabh International in 1970. Professor Rita R.
Colwell, United States won the 2010 Stockholm Water Prize.
• Russia honours Mikhail Kalashnikov, father of the world´s most famous gun AK-47, with
the country´s highest award, Hero of Russia.
• Mota Singh, Britain's first Asian judge was knighted. Christopher Lee a.k.a. Counts
Dracula and Dooku was knighted for his services to drama and to society.
• Lata Mangeshkar was presented France's highest civilian award Officer of the Legion of
• Bangladesh Prime Minister Sheikh Hasina is chosen for the 2009 Indira Gandhi Prize
for Peace, Disarmament and Development for her outstanding contribution to
promotion of democracy.
• V.K. Murthy first cinematographer to be chosen for the Dada Saheb Phalke Award.
• Satya Vrat Shastri, eminent Sanskrit poet, author of The Ramayana: A Linguistic
Study, is presented the 42nd Jnanpith Award. He is first Sanskrit scholar to get this award.
• J. S. Rajput -2004 Jan Amos Comenius Award by the United Nations Educational, Scientific
and Cultural Organisation (UNESCO)
• M.D. Madhusudhan has been awarded the 2009 Whitley Award in recognition of his work
to reduce human-wildlife conflict in the Western Ghats. Whitley award includes a £30,000
project grant from HSBC to carry forward outstanding science-based research and
conservation efforts.
• Two Indian non-governmental organisations, Ecosphere Spiti in Himachal Pradesh and
Barefoot College in Rajasthan, have been chosen for the 2009 Green Energy and Green
Livelihoods awards, for their work towards engaging local communities in sustainable
occupations. The NGOs will receive Rs. 20 lakh each. The awards have been instituted by
Sierra Club, a U.S.-based environmental organisation founded in 1892.
• Mallika Dutt- won the American Courage Award for her work in the U.S. and India.
• Kiran Mazumdar-Shaw, Chairman and Managing Director, Biocon was awarded the Nikkei
Asia Prize for 2009 for promoting regional growth in Asia. The Nikkei Asia Prize has been
instituted in 1996 by Nihon Keizai Shimbun (Nikkei), a Japanese business daily.
• Rajiv Gandhi Khel Ratna award (2008-09)-Vijender Singh, Sushil Kumar, M.C. Mary Kom
• Rajiv Gandhi Khel Ratna award for 2007-08- Mahendra Singh Dhoni
• Wisden names Virender Sehwag the 'Leading Cricketer in the World' for 2008 & 2009
• Lukás Dlouhý (Czech republic) & Leander Paes had won 2009 French Open & US Open
- Men's Doubles.
• Pankaj Advani -newly-crowned World professional billiards champion.
• Suranjoy Singh gave India its first Asian championship gold in 15 years in Boxing
Championship held in Zhuhai, China.

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• Spain completed a 5-0 Davis Cup final victory over Czech Republic in 2009.
• Squash team of Egypt won the `World junior girls' championship.
• Business News: (Treaties related with EU): (Date)- Paris Treaty- April 18, 1951; Rome
Treaty- March 25, 1957; Maastricht Treaty- February 7, 1992; Treaty of Lisbon-
December 13, 2007.
• Brazil has made a decision to impose a 2 per cent tax on all foreign exchange inflows.
• RBI and PTI - 2010 is Diamond Jubilee Year.
• Infosys Technologies Ltd - It is first private company to get protection from the
Central Industrial Security Force (CISF).
• Bharat Refractories has been amalgamated with Steel Authority of India.
• BSNL becomes the first company in the country to launch wireless broadband services.
• NHPC is constructing the Subansiri hydel project (Arunachal Pradesh) having India´s
largest and longest tunnel.
• Vedanta Group is the first Indian group that had obtained a primary listing on the London
Stock Exchange.
• Cairn India is a part of the British oil explorer Cairn Energy has started crude oil
production from its Mangla oil fields in Barmer, Rajasthan. Mangla oil fields is said to
be the largest onshore discovery in the country over two decades.
• Places in News: Washington, D.C, United States in 2008 hosted the first G-20 Leaders
Summit on Financial Markets and the World Economy.
• L'Aquila, Italy hosted the 35
G8 summit was organised between July 8-10, 2009.15

Summit of the Non-Aligned Movement: 11-16 July 2009, Sharm El Sheikh, Egypt.
• Moscow hosted First Global Ministerial Conference on Road Safety held between 19 - 20
November 2009.
• The 2009 Commonwealth Heads of Government Meeting (CHOGM) took place between
November 27 and 29 in Trinidad.
• UN Climate Change Conference: 7 - 18 December 2009, Copenhagen.

• The eighth annual Asia Security Summit was held in Singapore. It was held under the
auspices of the London-based International Institute for Strategic Studies.
• Sri Lanka and Belarus were granted dialogue partner status in the Shanghai Cooperation
Organisation (SCO) at the SCO's 2009 summit in Yekaterinburg. India, Iran, Mongolia and
Pakistan- current observers.
• On June 25, 2009 the committee of the UNESCO voted to remove the status of Dresden Elbe
Valley in Germany.
• Lunen, Germany-to become the first in the world to be powered by animal waste when it
launches a biogas network in 2010.
• The A 9 Highway is the only road link to Jaffna.
• Conventions): (Related to)- Vienna (1985) : Ozone Layer; Ramsar (1971): Wetlands;
Stockholm (2001): Persistent Organic Pollutants; Rotterdam (2004):Export of hazardous
• Cheetah is the only living member of the genus Acinonyx. Iran has maximum number of
• The city of Tokyo launched Asia's first scheme to trade carbon credits, aiming to lead
Japan in the battle against greenhouse gas emissions blamed for climate change.
• Rwanda gained admission in Commonwealth of Nations as its 54
member during 2009
Commonwealth Heads of Government Meeting (CHOGM).
• Saudi Arabia has inaugurated its first-ever co-educational university allowing girls to
attend classes without veil.
• The Zaydis, who are also called Houthis, are a Shia ethnic group that are fighting with the
government forces of Yemen in Saada Mountains.
• The government of UAE has recently made it mandatory for all government and private
schools to raise the country's flag and play the national anthem during daily morning
assembly or before the start of the school day.
• Nepal has celebrated its first Republic Day in May 2009.

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• Macedonia and Albania have been engaged in a dispute over the national identity of Mother
Teresa. Mother Teresa was born Agnes Gonxha Bojaxhiu in Skopje, Macedonia, to an ethnic
Albanian family.
• The Maldivian Cabinet signed a declaration appealing to global leaders to save their atoll
nation from being swamped by rising sea water after a underwater meeting in Girifushi
near the capital Male in Oct 200
• Nilgiri Mountains is chosen as the suitable site for the India-based Neutrino underground
• National Bureau of Forest Genetics is to be established in Dehra Dun under
the Indian Council for Forest Research and Education to help protect India´s
diminishing forest resources.
• The first fully automated weather stations to monitor the climate in the Himalayan
region become operational at Almora, Uttarakhand.
• The Indian government has decided to set up a National Institute of Himalayan
Glaciologists at Dehradun, Uttarakhand.
• National Institute of Himalayan Glaciology to be established in Dehra Dun.
• The National Institute of Marine Biotechnology will be set up near Chennai.
• NEPC India Limited is establishing a Special Economic Zone (SEZ) in Coimbatore for non-
conventional energy-based products.
• Institutes involved in the research on the impact of global warming on glaciers in the
Himalayan and Tibetan regions are- the Wadia Institute of Himalayan Geology, India;
the Cold and Arid Regions Environmental and Engineering Research, China
• Kerala has promised nearly 100 acres for setting up the Marine Police Academy near the
Ezhimala Naval Academy in Kannur.
• India repository of seeds at Chang-La, Leh aims to rival that at Svalbard in Norway,
which can hold up to 3 million seed varieties.
• Bandra-Worli sea bridge is eight-lane 5.6 km sea bridge and is the second sea bridge of
India. It is India's first cable-stayed sea bridge. It is named after Rajiv Gandhi.
• The first sea bridge of India is the two-lane 2.3 km Pamban bridge that connects
Rameswaram island with the mainland. (The Pamban bridge refers to both the road bridge and
the cantilever railway bridge, though primarily it means the latter).
• Jhabua, Madhya Pradesh has the highest density of tribal population.
• Rutland Island was once inhabited by the extinct Jangil tribe. Rutland Island belongs to
Andaman group & is located across the Macpherson Strait from South Andaman Island.
• Gujarat government opposed in the Supreme Court the National Board for Wildlife´s
proposal to shift Asiatic lions from the Gir forest to the Kuno Palpur reserve in
Madhya Pradesh.
• Dongria Kondh tribals in forests of Niyamgiri Hills in Orissa's Lanjigarh are
suffering due to pollution of Vansadhara river caused by Vedanta´s alumina
• Mumbai gets its brand new anti-terror outfit, Force One, with the Passing Out Parade of the
first batch of 216 commandos.
• Bhavnagar was the first princely state to merge with the democratic Indian Union in 1948.
• Tirumala laddus granted Geographical Indication certification.
• The 'Vazhakkulam pineapple' which has won the Geographic Indications (GI) status is
produced in Kerala.
• The first public audit of special economic zones (SEZs) in Maharashtra held in Raigad
• Padmaja Naidu Himalayan Zoological (PNHZ) Park in Darjeeling has recently received
three pairs of the Himalayan Tahr and two pairs of Blue sheep from a zoo in Japan.
• New Tiger Reserve: Madhya Pradesh: Ratapani Tiger Reserve; Maharashtra :Sahyadri
Tiger Reserve (Chandoli National Park); Orissa: Sunabeda Tiger Reserve; Uttar Pradesh :
Pilibhit Tiger Reserve
• The International Finance Corporation (IFC) has signed an agreement with the Kerala
State government for a study to develop infrastructure for a deep-water port at Vizhinjam in

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Current Affairs Roundup¨ in Subject Box.

• Delhi will host the first ever Indian Grand Prix in 2011.
• Buxa Tiger Rerserve (BTR) in north Bengal known for clouded leopard is contiguous to
the Manas National Park in Assam.
• Meghalaya State government has allowed the pre-developmental projects for uranium
mining at Wahkaji.
• Sanjay-Dubri Tiger Reserve- Madhya Pradesh
• The endangered Great Indian Bustard also known as Maldhok is found in Thar desert.
• Satjelia Island in Gosaba block was hit by cyclone Aila. Sunderbans hit by Aila.
• The Silent Valley is a small plateau located on the southwestern corner of the Nilgiri Hills. It is
a part of the Western Ghats hill chain in southern peninsular India. It is the point of origin of
the Kunthi river which joins the west-flowing Bharathapuzha. It also forms the core area of
the Nilgiri Biosphere Reserve.
• Institute of Genomics and Integrative
Biology (IIGB), New Delhi has succeeded
in completely sequencing the genome of an
individual. IIGB is a part of CSIR.
• India's first open jail for women was
inaugurated at the Yerawada Central
Prison in Pune.
• Ranthambore will host the World Tiger
Summit in 2010.
• `Mahal' - only language spoken in Minicoy
Island of Lakshadweep .
• Most of vulnerable languages are spoken in
hilly areas or Assam.
• Assam -first cleft-free State in India.
• Wind Energy: Muppandal & Kayattar
(Tamil Nadu), Puri (Orissa), Satara (
Maharashtra), Lamba & Mandvi (Gujarat);
Tidal energy : Gulf of Khambhat, Gulf of
Kachhh & Sunderbans; Wave Energy: Vijhinjam near Thiruvananthapuram,(Kerala);
Ocean Thermal Energy: 100 MW plant proposed off the coast of Tamil Nadu;
Geothermal Energy: Manikaran (Kullu, Himachal Pradesh), Puga Valley, Ladakh,
Tatapani (Chhattisgarh), Biogas: (UP has highest potential, Maharashtra has highest
number of plants); Solar Cooking: Shridi, Tirupati.
Budget & Economy Highlights:
• Share of States in the divisible pool of Central taxes raised from 30.5% to 32 %
• Local bodies will get around 2.3% of the divisible pool of Central taxes.
• 13 Finance Commission recommended that the Centre should have no revenue deficits by
2013-14 and its fiscal deficit should be less than 3% of GDP. States would have to meet
the same targets in a staggered manner depending on their current deficit levels with the last
of them meeting a 2014-15 deadline.
• Fiscal deficit for 2010-11 at 5.5 per cent of the GDP.
• Minimum alternate tax (MAT) hiked from 15 per cent to 18 per cent.
• Excise duty increased to 10 per cent from 8 per cent
• Renting of immovable property is a taxable service, with retrospective effect from June 1,
• Government introduces nutrient-based fertilizer subsidy from April 1, 2010, thus
deciding to raise the retail price of urea by 10 per cent and allowing manufacturers
to fix the rates of DAP and MOP fertilizers.
• Steel Production- China(1), Japan(2), South Korea(3) and India(4)
• The RBI deferred the implementation of the Base Rate regime by three months to July 1,
2010 and also exempted three categories of loans (staff loans, loans against fixed
deposits and loans under the differential rate of interest scheme) from the new system.

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