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May 2011 5th Issue

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International Issues National Issues Economic Issues Bilateral Issues Awards Sports Persons Science & Technology

Monthly Current Affairs Bank Exams Zone Upsc Zone


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International Issues April 2011


Russia proposes global nuclear safety plan Russian President Dmitry Medvedev has proposed a plan to tighten the safety standards in nuclear power plants of the world and sent it to world leaders. It will be discussed by the Group of Eight at a summit in Deauville, France, on May 26 and 27.

4th SACOSAN begins in Colombo The 4th South Asian Conference on Sanitation (SACOSAN) of SAARC countries started in Colombo, Sri Lanka. The 4 days conference which will be held from 7th April was declared open by Sri Lankas Minister of Water Supply and Drainage Services Mr. Dinesh Gunawardene.

International award for Gopinath Muthukad Gopinath Muthukad has been selected by the International Magicians Society (IMS) of the US for the International Merlin Award. He is the second Indian magician, after P.C. Sorcar Jr. of West Bengal, to receive the award.

World Health Day observed on April 7th.

world's first Dual Core' processor smartphone, Optimus 2X LG said it plans to launch a range of phones in this particular segment this year. The company also announced the introduction of world's first Dual Core' processor smartphone, Optimus 2X, in India. Optimus 2X is the first phone to run on Nvidia's new Tegra 2 chipset, which promises excellent mobile experience.

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China hosted BRICS summit on 14th April BRICS, summit or the meeting of Brazil, Russia, India, China and South Africa, held in Sanya on south China's tropical island of Hainan Province on April 14. Summit of emerging economic powers focused on global developments, financing and cooperation the attending countries. Chinese President Hu Jintao chaired the meeting, with Brazilian President Dilma Rousseff, Russian President Dmitry Medvedev, Indian Prime Minister Manmohan Singh and South African President Jacob Zuma in attendance. South Africa is the newest member of BRICS, and is considered to be at the same stage of economic development as the group's other members.

IMF lowers India's growth forecast to 8.2 % for 2011 International Monetary Fund (IMF) has lowered India's economic growth rate forecast to 8.2 per cent for 2011 and warned that boom like conditions could lead to over-heating of the economy. The multilateral lending agency had earlier projected the country's economy to grow by 8.4 per cent in 2011.

Jonathan wins Nigeria's presidential elections President Goodluck Jonathan has won Nigeria's presidential election by securing 60.02 percent of the vote. He will be sworn-in on 29th May to serve a four-year tenure after which he is free to go for a second term.

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National Issues April 2011


New IDSA team elected Amway India vice-president (legal and corporate affairs) Yoginder Singh has been reelected chairman of the Indian Direct Selling Association (IDSA) for 2011-12.

Nod for e-district project The Union Cabinet's Committee on Infrastructure approved the rollout of the e-district mission mode project in all 640 districts of the country, including the 41 districts where pilot projects of the scheme have been initiated. The project is part of the national e-governance plan approved by the Centre in 2006 to make all government services accessible to the common man in his locality, through common service delivery outlets, at affordable costs and in the most efficient, transparent and reliable manner. The project is estimated to cost Rs.1,663 crore, of which the government's share is put at Rs. 1,233 crore. The States will bear Rs. 430 crore.

Bioremediation technology project Union Minister for Environment and Forests Jairam Ramesh has launched a bioremediation technology project to curb pollution caused by sewerage and industrial effluents in the Buddah Nallah of Ludhiana in Punjab. The project is estimated to cost Rs. 16 crore in the initial phase and it will be borne by The National River Conservation Directorate of the Union government. It is expected to take one year for completion.

New lighting project launched in Gurgaon The All India Citizens Alliance for Progress & Development (AICAPD) launched a new lighting project titled Innovation Unique Jhuggi Lighting Project (Ujala).

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According to AICAPD, the project is aimed at benefitting the children of migrant labourers who live in temporary hutments which lack basic amenities including clean water, hygienic surroundings and light at night while their parents go for work.

Launch of PSLV C-16 successful The seventeenth consecutive successful flight of the Polar Satellite Launch Vehicle PSLV C-16 has placed Indias latest remote sensing satellite Resourcesat-2, in a Polar Sun Synchronous orbit. In its standard configuration, the PSLV stands 44.4 meters tall and weighs 295 tons. The PSLV C-16 carries Advanced Mission Computers and Advanced Telemetry Systems. The Resourcesat -2,is Indias latest remote sensing satellite weighs 1206kg at lift-off. It has three cameras for high, medium and low resolution.

Gujarat releases Braille version of RTI A Braille version of the Right to Information Act and its rules was released by the Gujarat Information Commission for the benefit of the visually challenged.

$150-m World Bank loan for India service system The World Bank has approved $150 million loan for India to accelerate implementation of its National e-Governance Plan (NeGP), which is aimed at transforming the service delivery system across the country.

GAIL launches integrated gas management system Gas utility GAIL India said it has launched Asia's first integrated gas management system to track all information on transmission and distribution of natural gas in the country. The SAP (application)-based Gas Management System, third of its kind in the world after Petrobras in Brazil and Pemex in Mexico, was launched at GAIL's corporate office in New Delhi by Minister of State for Petroleum and Natural Gas R P N Singh

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Scheme to promote project exports launched Union Commerce and Industry Minister Anand Sharma launched a long-term concessional credit scheme to help build export infrastructure in developing nations including Africa, the Gulf and neighbouring countries like Bangladesh, Nepal and Sri Lanka. The Buyer's Credit Under the NEIA', a new product that will enable Indian companies to be in a competitive position vis-a-vis peers from other nations in project bids.

Indian Small Wind Association formed To promote the small wind and solar compliant systems and to represent wind and windsolar hybrid manufacturers, system integrators and service providers, Indian Small Wind Association (INSWA) was officially formed

NABARD projects Rs. 41,085-crore credit potential for Karnataka The National Bank for Agriculture and Rural Development (NABARD) has projected a credit potential of Rs. 41,085 crore for the farm and non-farm activities in the State in 2011-12. Focus on projects to be sanctioned under (RIDF) Rural Infrastructure Development Fund. 76 new villages in the State included under (VDP) Village Development Programme

Dhoni to join Territorial Army Indian cricket captain Mahendra Singh Dhoni would soon become the latest high profile celebrity to get an honorary commission in the Territorial Army.

A dosa for the Guinness book Hoteliers here created a new Guinness record , dishing out a 38.2-foot-long dosa, the longest ever made.

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The feat was performed in the presence of Guinness Book of World Records Adjudicator Elizabeth Smith on the sprawling ground of the Siddhartha College of Arts and Science College as part of the golden jubilee celebrations of the Vijayawada Hotel Owners' Association.

ResourceSat-2 launch scheduled for April 20 The launch of remote-sensing satellite the ResourceSat-2 has been tentatively scheduled for 10.12 a.m., April 20, the Indian Space Research Organisation (ISRO) said. ResourceSat-2 has been designed for study, management of natural resources YouthSat is a joint Indo-Russian satellite for stellar, atmospheric studies

Government to issue biometric PAN cards The government has decided to issue biometric PAN cards to taxpayers across the country to weed out the problem of duplicate and fake ones.

Indian wins Indu Sharma Katha Samman Indian novelist Vikas Kumar Jha has been chosen for the 2011 International Indu Sharma Katha Samman, for his novel McCluskieganj ' . The award will be presented to Jha at a function in the House of Commons in London on June 27.

Mini Ratna status for Pawan Hans Pawan Hans Helicopters Limited was conferred the Mini Ratna Category-I status by President Pratibha Patil. It has been providing services to the paramilitary forces and support services for oil exploration.

India has highest number of stillbirths: Lancet report India has the dubious distinction of having the highest number of stillbirths in the world.

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This finding comes after the country recorded the worst female child sex ratio ever (Census 2011). India figures at the top of 10 countries that have the highest number of stillbirths, according to the Stillbirth series published in the British medical journal, The Lancet.

India in Venice Biennale for the first time in 116 years This year finally, India will have its own national pavilion at the prestigious Biennale to be inaugurated on June 3, 2011, confirms a high-ranking official at the Lalit Kala Akademi. India will be one of the 94 countries in this world famous art event that saw its inception in 1895. India will find space at the centre of the venue called Arsenal Area, which enjoys the highest number of visitors.

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Bilateral Issues April 2011


India to sign pact with Kazakh oil field Prime Minister Manmohan Singh will reach Astana, the Capital of Kazakhstan on April 15, to sign an agreement, which will give India 25 per cent stake in the Satpayev oil field on the Caspian Sea. The deal, being negotiated by ONGC Videsh Ltd. (OVL), is expected to cost around $400 million (about Rs.1,800 crore). The deal will be signed during Dr. Singh's three-day visit for a bilateral summit between India and Kazakhstan.

India, Kazakhstan sign pact on nuclear cooperation Prime Minister Manmohan. Singh and Kazakhstan President Nazarbayev agree on a 3year Joint Action Plan and signed pact on nuclear cooperation

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Awards April 2011


Green Leaf Award The Mangalore City Corporation recently won the Green Leaf Award held at the Centre for Economics & Social studies on April 23, Hyderabad, organised by NGO Sukuki Exanora for Best Sanitary Landfills Category.

Phalke Award for K. Balachander Director K. Balachander, one of the influential filmmakers and trendsetters in Indian cinema, will receive the Dadasaheb Phalke Award for the year 2010

KISS award for UK legal luminary KISS Humanitarian Award 2011 will be conferred on legal luminary Nicholas Addison Phillips, President of the Supreme Court of the United Kingdom.

NHPC awarded Gentle Giants Award NHPC, the country's premier hydro-power company, has been conferred the Gentle Giants Award under the Non-Manufacturing Mini Ratna category by Dalal Street Investment Journal. NHPC Chairman and Managing Director A.B.L. Srivastava received the award from Union Power Minister Sushil Kumar Shinde at the PSU Awards-2011 ceremony

South Korean award for Binayak Sen Rights activist Binayak Sen, who was freed on bail by the Supreme Court in a case of sedition, has been chosen for the South Korean Gwangju Award for human rights for 2011.

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HMRI bags NASSCOM award The Health Management and Research Institute (HMRI) has bagged National Association of Software and Services Companies (NASSCOM) and KPMG Healthcare IT Awards 2011 under the best technology solution for healthcare inclusion category for its telemedicine project.

VA Tech Wabag bags award VA Tech Wabag, water and wastewater management solutions provider, has received GWI Global Water Award, recognising the significant contribution made in the international water arena. The award was presented by Kofi Annan, former Secretary General of the United Nations, at function in Berlin on April 18

Award for forest conservation announced The Rajasthan Government has selected the Forest Protection and Management Committee (Van Suraksha Evum Prabandhan Samiti) of Balicha range in Pratagarh district for the conservation award, Amrita Devi Vishnoi Smriti Puraskar, for 2010. The annual award, given to non governmental agencies, societies and groups engaged in exemplary acts of forest conservation and wildlife protection in the State, carries a cash component of Rs.50,000.

International award for Gopinath Muthukad Gopinath Muthukad has been selected by the International Magicians Society (IMS) of the US for the International Merlin Award. He is the second Indian magician, after P.C. Sorcar Jr. of West Bengal, to receive the award.

Aryabhata International Award Karnataka Bank MD P. Jayarama Bhat was conferred with the Aryabhata International Award instituted by Aryabhata Cultural Association, Bangalore by Dr. V.S. Acharya, Karnataka's Minister for Higher Education.

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Bajaj Allianz bags award Bajaj Allianz has bagged awards in multiple categories of recently announced Bloomberg UTV Financial Leadership Awards 2011. Bajaj Allianz General Insurance has been awarded General insurer of the year-private sector', while Bajaj Allianz Life Insurance, along with Bajaj Allianz General Insurance, was recognised for Best contribution in investor education and category enhancement of the year' in insurance.

Saraswati Samman for Kannada writer, S. L. Bhyrappa Kannada writer S. L. Bhyrappa chosen for the prestigious Saraswati Samman for his novel Mandra. The award, constituted by the K. K. Birla Foundation, consists of Rs.7.50 lakh, a citation and a plaque. The jury which selected Bhyrappa was headed by former Chief Justice of India G. B. Patnaik.

Award for BMTC Bangalore Metropolitan Transport Corporation (BMTC) has won the best large public transport fleet operator Apollo-commercial vehicle magazine organisation award 2011. The award was presented to BMTC for its passenger-friendly services and financial stability.

WikiLeaks coverage wins Guardian Newspaper of the Year'' award The Guardian's coverage of the secret U.S. diplomatic cables released by WikiLeaks has won it recognition as Britain's Newspaper of the Year'' at the prestigious 2011 Press Awards

NMDC gets SCOPE award The National Mineral Development Corporation (NMDC) has won a commendation certificate of SCOPE (Standing Conference of Public Enterprises) meritorious award for

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corporate social responsibility and responsiveness for 2009-10. G.B. Joshi, Director (Personnel), received the certificate from President Pratibha Patil in Delhi.

Gebran Tueni Prize for Moroccan journalist Aboubakr Jama, co-founder and former managing director of the weekly newspaper Le Journal Hebdomadaire, was presented the 2010 Gebran Tueni Award in Beirut on April 12.

Mysore division gets efficiency award The Mysore division of the South Western Railway (SWR) bagged the Overall Efficiency Shield for the year 2010-11, by registering best performances in most of the departments.

India's Sunitha Krishnan receives Vital Voices award Sunitha Krishnan, an anti-human trafficking pioneer and co-founder of the NGO Prajwala, was honoured with the Human Rights award of the prestigious Vital Voices Global Leadership Award.

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Persons April 2011


New chief of Naval Dockyard Rear Admiral K.R. Nair, took over as Admiral Superintendent of Naval Dockyard (Visakhapatnam) from Rear Admiral Vijay Kumar Namballa.

Gnanavelu passes away T.V. Gnanavelu, a long time Secretary of the Tamil Nadu Aquatics Association and a former Vice-President of the Swimming Federation of India, passed away. He was 74.

Duncan Fletcher, coach of the Indian cricket team The former England coach, Duncan Fletcher, has been appointed coach of the Indian cricket team for a period of two years. He takes over from the highly successful Gary Kirsten.

Michel Martelly, declared winner of Haiti's presidential election Popular singer-turned-politician presidential election. Michel Martelly was declared winner of Haiti's

Mr. Martelly took 67.57 per cent of the vote in the March 20 run-off, confirming preliminary results in which he trounced his rival, the former First Lady, Mirlande Manigat.

Sathya Sai Baba passes away Iconic spiritual leader Sri Sathya Sai Baba passed away at Puttaparthi in Anantapur district of Andhra Pradesh, leaving behind millions of mourning devotees in India and abroad, and a sprawling system of educational, medical and philanthropic services that has huge resources at its command. He was 85.

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Nawang Gombu passes away Nawang Gombu, the first man to scale Mt. Everest twice, died at his home in Darjeeling after a brief illness. He was 79.

Leela Samson is New censor board chief Bharatanatyam dancer Leela Samson was chosen to head the Central Board of Film Certification.

Satish Chandra takes additional charge of NFL Chairman and Managing Director Satish Chandra has taken additional charge as Chairman and Managing Director (CMD) of National Fertilizers Limited (NFL). Besides being on the NFL Board since October 2008, he is holding the charge of CMD of Madras Fertilizers.

Sukhadeo Thorat is new ICSSR chairperson The Indian Council of Social Science Research (ICSSR) has nominated Sukhadeo Thorat as its chairperson for three years. The ICSSR is fully funded by the Human Resource Development Ministry.

New BAI chairman R.J. Srinivas, President, BBMP Contractors Association, has been elected Chairman, Builders' Association of India, Karnataka (Bangalore) Centre, for the year 2011-12.

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Bhaskaran, first SFI president, dead C. Bhaskaran, first all-India president of the Students Federation of India (SFI) and editor of the Chintha Publishers of the CPI(M) in Kerala, died. He was 65.

Muthuraman is new CII President Tata Steel Vice-Chairman B. Muthuraman has been elected new President of the Confederation of Indian Industry (CII) for 2011-12. The Godrej Group Chairman, Adi Godrej, is the President-designate. Mr. Muthuraman succeeds Hari Bhartia of Jubilant Organosys.

Legendary archaeologist Lewis Binford passes away Lewis Binford, founder of the New Archaeology movement and one of the seniormost figures in world archaeology, has passed away at the age of 80.

Vice-Admiral Joshi to head Western Naval Command Vice-Admiral D.K. Joshi will be the new Chief of the Western Naval Command. He will take charge from Vice-Admiral Sanjeev Bhasin, who attains superannuation on April 30.

Bhawani Singh, last Maharaja of Jaipur, dead The last titular Maharaja of Jaipur, Sawai Bhawani Singh, died after prolonged illness.He was 80.

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Economic Issues April 2011


Rajendra Pawar is new Nasscom Chairman The National Association of Software and Services Companies (Nasscom) announced Rajendra S. Pawar as the new Chairman of its Executive Council for 2011-12. He succeeds Harsh Manglik. Mr. Pawar has been a member of the Nasscom's Executive Council and is now the Chairman and Co-founder of NIIT Technologies. Nasscom also announced the appointment of N. Chandrasekaran, Tata Consultancy Services CEO and Managing Director, as Vice-Chairman of the Executive Council.

OIL signs MoU with TERI Oil India Limited (OIL) has signed a memorandum of understanding (MoU) with The Energy and Resources Institute (TERI) for research and collaboration in petroleum biotechnology and new and renewable energy sources.

Diamond Retail Benchmark launched The All India Gems and Jewellery Trade Federation (GJF) announced the launch of the Diamond Retail Benchmark (DRB), a price chart for retail buyers of diamonds. The new index, developed by IDEX Online, an Israeli company, would ensure greater transparency in the pricing of cut diamonds in the country, depending on the quality and various other parameters. IDEX Online Managing Director Yaron Barzilay said the new index would ensure that sellers did not overcharge diamond customers.

Haats at India-Bangladesh border to open in June Union Commerce and Industry Minister Anand Sharma has said that the IndiaBangladesh border haats (markets) will be inaugurated in June this year that would boost bilateral trade.

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$3.5 b private sector investment is in the pipeline. Countervailing duties on jute exports from Bangladesh lifted

ADB to provide 150 million US dollars to India The Asian Development Bank (ADB) will provide India, 150 million US dollars in credit guarantees to increase solar power generation in the country. It will help to mobilise long term funding for solar energy development and support India's efforts to push its programme to diversify energy mix.

Wipro Technologies ranked 2nd globally by US Diversity Council Wipro Technologies, the global IT, Consulting and Outsourcing business of Wipro Limited, announced it has been ranked second in the list of Top 25 US diversity councils, by The Association of Diversity Councils.

BHEL records 40 % rise in net profit at Rs.6,021 crore Bharat Heavy Electrical Limited (BHEL) announced a record 40 per cent rise in net profit at Rs.6,021 crore in 2010-11 against Rs. 4,311 crore.

Venus Remedies bags TQM award Venus Remedies, a leading research-based pharmaceutical company, bagged an international award QC-100 TQM (total quality management) in gold category in recognition of its commitment to quality, system efficiency, leadership, technology and innovation. The awards were given by Business Initiative Directions (BID) International Quality Convention 2011 held in Geneva.

Prime Minister of Thailand Abhisit Vejjajiva said bilateral trade between the two nations was likely to touch $10 billion by 2012.

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Global trade to grow by 6.5 % in 2011 Global trade is projected to grow by a modest 6.5 per cent this year as uncertainties continue to persist in major economies like Japan

IMF lowers India's growth forecast to 8.2 % for 2011 International Monetary Fund (IMF) has lowered India's economic growth rate forecast to 8.2 per cent for 2011 and warned that boom like conditions could lead to over-heating of the economy. The multilateral lending agency had earlier projected the country's economy to grow by 8.4 per cent in 2011.

$150-m World Bank loan for India service system The World Bank has approved $150 million loan for India to accelerate implementation of its National e-Governance Plan (NeGP), which is aimed at transforming the service delivery system across the country.

NABARD projects Rs. 41,085-crore credit potential for Karnataka The National Bank for Agriculture and Rural Development (NABARD) has projected a credit potential of Rs. 41,085 crore for the farm and non-farm activities in the State in 2011-12. Focus on projects to be sanctioned under (RIDF) Rural Infrastructure Development Fund. 76 new villages in the State included under (VDP) Village Development Programme

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Sports April 2011


Grandmaster Abhijeet Gupta defeats Parimarjan World Junior Champion and Grandmaster Abhijeet Gupta defeated BPCL team mate Parimarjan at Dubai. Abhijeet finished the tournament on 7.5 points out of a possible nine.

India own the ICC cricket World Cup 2011 India own the ICC cricket World Cup 2011 against Srilanka. India won by 6 wickets. ODI held at Wankhede Stadium, Mumbai, India.

Paes, Bhupathi clinch Miami Open Men's Doubles title Leander Paes and Mahesh Bhupathi have clinched the Miami Open Men's Doubles title in the United States. With the win, the duo also became number one in the ATP World Tour Doubles Team Rankings. Third seeded Bhupathi and Paes rallied to beat second seeded Belarusian-Canadian pair of Max Mirnyi and Daniel Nestor in three sets 6-7, 6-2, 10-5.

Novak Djokovic own the ATP Miami Masters crown Novak Djokovic defeated World No. 1 Rafael Nadal 4-6, 6-3, 7-6(4) to win the ATP Miami Masters crown and remain unbeaten in 2011.

Sania Mirza- Vesnina win second WTA title Sania Mirza and her Russian partner Elena Vesnina clinched their second WTA title together, lifting the Family Circle Cup doubles trophy with a straight-set triumph over Americans Bethanie Mattek-Sands and Meghann Shaughnessy in Charleston.

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The unseeded Indo-Russian pair beat the fourth seeds 6-4 6-4 in what was a repeat of the Indian Wells final three weeks ago in which Sania and Vesnina had come out victors.

Sasikiran beats Feldman in Dubai chess opener Top seeded Grandmaster K Sasikiran warded off some initial resistance from Australian Vladimir Feldman to open with a comfortable win in the 13th Dubai International Open Chess Tournament in Dubai.

Watsons record 15 sixes leads Australia to 9 wkt win over Bangladesh Shane Watson scored 185 runs from 96 balls, including a record 15 sixes, while leading Australia to a nine-wicket victory over Bangladesh in their second one-day cricket International in Mirpur.

Schwartzel clinches U.S. Masters South African Charl Schwartzel birdied the last four holes to win the 75th U.S. Masters by two strokes over Australians Adam Scott and Jason Day. Phil Mickelson presents Charl Schwartzel the coveted Green Jacket at the U.S. Masters.

Alok Kumar wins Asian billiards title Alok Kumar outwitted former world champion Praput Chaithanasukan of Thailand 6-0 to clinch the Asian billiards championship title at the Olympic Stadium in Kish Island, Iran.

Tendulkar named Wisden's leading cricketer for 2010 Wisden, regarded as the Bible of cricket, has named Indian batting maestro Sachin Tendulkar as the leading cricketer in the world for the year 2010.

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Science & Technology April 2011


ISRO to build orbiter for NASA The National Aeronautics and Space Administration (NASA) has asked the Indian Space Research Organisation (ISRO) to build an orbiter that will provide the communication between the soil samples collected from the far side of the moon and the earth, according to ISRO Chairman K. Radhakrishnan. This joint venture between the ISRO and the Jet Propulsion Laboratory in Pasadena, California, would be part of the Moonrise missions planned by the NASA.

50th Anniversary of Gagarin Spaceflight Celebrations are being held to mark the 50th anniversary of the first human spaceflight - a 108-minute orbit of earth by Soviet cosmonaut Yuri Gagarin.

NSTL's ship testing facility to become operational in mid-2015 The Sea-keeping and Manoeuvring Basin (SMB) project of Visakhapatnam-based Naval Science and Technological Laboratory (NSTL), the Naval R&D laboratory of DRDO, will become operational in mid-2015 at a cost of Rs 170 crore.

IAF fighters to have on board oxygen generation system Indian Air Force (IAF) fighters would soon be equipped with special gadgets for production of oxygen while in the air that will enable them to be airborne for longer period and carry extra payload, marking India's entry into an elite club of forces. Developed by Defence Research and Development Organisation (DRDO), the On Board Oxygen Generation System (OBOGS) produces oxygen inside the aircraft, allowing the pilots to fly without the help of heavy oxygen cylinders they carry for high altitudes and long duration sorties.

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World's first Dual Core' processor smartphone, Optimus 2X LG said it plans to launch a range of phones in this particular segment this year. The company also announced the introduction of world's first Dual Core' processor smartphone, Optimus 2X, in India. Optimus 2X is the first phone to run on Nvidia's new Tegra 2 chipset, which promises excellent mobile experience.

Sukhadeo Thorat is new ICSSR chairperson The Indian Council of Social Science Research (ICSSR) has nominated Sukhadeo Thorat as its chairperson for three years. The ICSSR is fully funded by the Human Resource Development Ministry.

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