May, 2012

Tribal schools haunts district education authorities

Namakkal district may take pride in the number of state ranks its private school students have secured in the plus two examinations, but containing poor performance of Govt. Tribal Schools (GTR) haunts district education authorities. Of the four GTR schools in the tribal habitation in the Kolli Hills, the one at Sengrani reported the worst performance with all eight students who took the examination failing. The Valvil Ori GTR at Valavanthindu produced a pass percentage of 36 per cent will only 18 of the 50 students clearing the exams.

Sultan Azlan Shah Cup Hockey

India beat arch-rivals Pakistan in an important match of the Sultan Azlan Shah Cup hockey tournament in Ipoh, Malaysia. 

Egypt`s decades old emergency comes to an end

Egypt`s decades-old state of emergency comes to an end as its last renewal expires. It is worth mentioning here that until now the nation was under a state of emergency continuously since the 1981 assassination of the then – President Anwar Sadat, allowing authorities to detain people without charge and try them in emergency security courts. 

India`s 25th Chief of the Army Staff

Gen. Bikram Singh takes over as India`s 25th Chief of the Army Staff. He succeeds Gen. V.K. Singh. Gen. Singh is the second Sikh to command the 1.3-million-strong Indian Army. 

Centre reveal GDP growth in the fourth quarter

Figures made available by the Centre reveal that India`s GDP growth in the fourth quarter (January-March) of 2011-12 slipped to a nine-year low of 5.3 percent. This drags the growth for entire 2011-12 down to 6.5 percent. 

Centre approves the NPT 2012

The Centre approves the National Telecom Policy (NPT) 2012. The policy seeks to abolish roaming charges and to allow national number portability. 

Property taxes at bank counters

Nearly ten lakh Chennaiites will be able to pay their property taxes through bank counters soon. The Chennai Corporation will sign a Memorandum of Agreement (MoA) with seven banks this week to enable walk-in payment of the tax. The banks included in the first phase are Indian overseas Bank, Canara Bank, ICICI, IDBI, HDFC, City Union Bank and Karur Vysya Bank. Hundreds of counters in there seven banks may soon start accepting money, cheques or demand drafts for property tax payment.

Kanchi mutt award

Music has no barriers. In an era when western music has a tremendous following a third year B.E. student Yasin Begum of Mayiladuthurai has mastered Carnatic music The Young Carnatic Musician Award instituted by Bharathi Yuva Kendra, Madurai, was presented to her by Kanchi Kamakoti Peetadhipathi, Sri Jayendra Saraswati Swamigal, at Sankara Mutt. Yasin said that the inspiration to learn Carnatic music came from her father, M. Kamal Basha, popularly known as Gujinis` in the local Carnatic music circle.

Viswanathan`s fifth world crown

World champion Viswanathan Anand of India retains his world chess crown, defeating Israeli contender Boris Gelfand in the title match in Moscow. With regular play ending in a 6-6 tie, Anand wins the rapid tie-breakers by a 2-5_1.5 margin. This is his fifth world crown.

Britain`s Supreme Court dismisses Assange`s appeal

Britains Supreme Court dismisses WikiLeaks founder Mr. Julian Assanges appeal against extradiction to Sweden to face allegations of sexual assault.

Myanmar`s democracy icon Ms. Aung San Suu Kyi`s first foreign trip

Myanmars democracy icon Ms. Aung San Suu Kyi begins her much-awaited Thailand trip, which is her first foreign tour in 24 years. Mr. Suu Kyis foray beyond Myanmar`s borders is a significant show of confidence in the reforms that have swept her homeland since a near 50-year military dictatorship was replaced with a quasi-civilian regime in 2011.

Power generation resumes at Mettur Thermal Station

Chief Minister Jayalalithaa said while one unit of 210 MW began generation, other three units of the same capacity would commence production on May 31, restoring the total generation to 840 MW. She said the fire had destroyed the conveyor belt and its accessaries to a length of 180 metres, paralysing the plant. Though she had told the Assembly early this month that the restoration work would take a month, some newspapers had said that it would take at least two months. “I have directed the officials to carryout the repairs or a war footing”.

Officials positive on Jayamkondan Project revival

Even though Jayamkondan lignite based mine-cum-thermal power project is a non-starter, officials at the Neyveli Lignite Corporation (NLC) have been expressing hopes about its revival. R. Kandasamy, Director (Planning and Projects) of the NLC told “we have been requesting the state govt. to help us to revive the project that has been hanging fire for decades for several reasons. Currently, we are facing hurdless in the form of land acquisition. We need about 12,000 hectares, of which 3,000 hectares is occupied by 40,000 people of 12,000 families from 22 villages.

NLC to add 1000 MW to regional grid this year

The Neyveli Lignite Corporation (NLC) will add 1,000 MW of power to the regional grid during the current financial year, said its Chairman and Managing Director A.R. Ansari. He said that the Corporation was on the verge of commissoning unit one of Thermal Power Station-II of 250 MW plant at Neyveli, followed by the second unit in December. The first unit of 500 MW plant of Tuticorin a joint venture of NLC and Tamil Nadu Generation and Distribution Corporation would be commissioned during 2012-13 and the second unit by 2013-14. Mr. Ansari said that the plan of the NLC was to add 15,000 MW of power by 2020 at an investment of around  90,000 crore, of which 30 per cent would come a equity from NLC. About 80 per cent of the projects were coal based and NLC was scouting for coal mines in Australia.

Lamp which is powered by human blood

An American designer named Mike Thompson unveils a lamp which is powered by human blood. To set the bulb aglow, one has to break the top off, use the jagged glass to cut oneself, and pour his/her blood in where it reacts with the chemicals inside.

Ondaatje Prize for Indian Writer

Mr. Rahul Bhattacharya of Delhi becomes the first Indian writer to win the prestigious Ondaatje Prize for his book. The Sly Company Of People Who Care. The £10,000 award is given by the Royal Society of Literature annually.

63rd National Junior Basketball championship

Chhattisgarh clinch both the boysand girls titles at the 63rd National Junior basketball championship in Puducherry. In the boysfinal, Chhattisgarh beat Punjab, while in the girls final, they beat Maharashtra.

Caretaker agreement with Nepal President and P.M.

In a move that may have long-term political implications, Nepals President Dr. Ram Baran Yadav terms the nations current government, led by Prime Minister Mr. Baburam Bhattarai, as a caretaker arrangement. Dr. Yadav also calls for a political consensus among the parties.

PM wraps up his Myanmar visit

Prime Minister Dr. Manmohan Singh wraps up his Myanmar visit. During the visit, an agreement for a $500-million line of credit to Myanmar is signed. Dr. Singh also meets Myanmar`s celebrated democracy icon Ms. Aung San Suu Kyi, and extends to her an invitation to visit India.

6th NTR National Literary Award

The 6th NTR National Literary Award is presented to noted Tamil writer Mr. Ashokamitran, known for his novelThanneer and various other works.

66th Santosh Trophy National football championship

Services win the 66th Santosh Trophy National football championship, beating Tamil Nadu in the final in Cuttack, Odisha.

South Sudan and Sudan proposed peace talk

South Sudan alleges that Sudan, its former parent country, has bombarded its territory on the eve of a series of proposed peace talks, the new development casts a shadow over recent reconciliation efforts.

HRD Minister announces single entrance test for ITI and others

Human Resource Development Minister Mr. Kapil Sibal announces that there will be a single entrance test for Indian Institutes of Technology (IITs) and National Institutes of Technology (NITs) and other Centrally-funded technical institutes. The test will be held in two parts on the same day _ JEE main and JEE advanced. The examination will also consider the marks obtained in the Class XII Board examinations.

Small icy objects past Neptune

Astronomers at Brazil`s National Laboratory claim to have found evidence which suggests a planet four times the size of the Earth skirting the edges of the solar system beyond Pluto. The planet, which is too distant to be easily spotted by Earth-based telescopes, could be gravitationally tugging on small icy objects past Neptune.

Cannes Film Festival

Austrian film director and screen writer Mr. Michael Hanekes film </span><i style="color: #282828;">Amour </i><span style="color: #282828;">wins the prestigious Palme dOr for the best movie at the Cannes Film Festival in Cannes, France. Earlier, his movie The White Ribbon had also won the same award in 2009.

Monaco Grand Prix Formula One Championship

Australian racer Mark Webber of the Red Bull team wins the Monaco Grand Prix Formula One Championship in Monte Carlo, Monaco.

IPL Champion _ KKR

Kolkata Knight Riders emerge champions at the Indian Premier League (IPL)-5, beating Chennai Super Kings by five wickets in the final in Chennai. Chris Gayle of Royal Challengers Bangalore (733 runs) wins the Orange Cap for most runs; Morne Morkel of Delhi Daredevils (25 wickets) wins the Purple Cap for most wickets. Sunil Narine of Kolkata Knight Riders is adjudged the Golden Player.

India and Pakistan agree to liberal visa regime

In a significant move that could pave the way to putting in place a liberal visa regime, India and Pakistan agree to do way with the need of a visa to cross the border within a radius of 400 metres at the Attari-Wagah point for Customs and related border officials.

Wind energy generation improves

Wind energy generation has been increasing in the state during the last few days resulting in higher penetration to the grid. K. Kasthurirangan, Chairman of the Indian Wind Power Association told, that for almost 24 hours since 24th May. Wind energy, penetration to the states grid was more than 30 per cent. Last year, this went upto 30 per cent. Of the installed wind energy capacity of nearly 7,000 MW in the state, the generation was 3,248 MW and 3,179. Of the total consumption of 227 million units, 75 million units were from wind energy.

Modernised bus shelters to get longer

Residents of areas around Rajiv Gandhi Salai, East Coast Road, Alandur and Ambattur will have to wait for some more time for modernised stainless steel bus shelters, as not enough bidders participated in the retender, the process for which was completed this week. Even though the next meeting of the Corporation Council is likely to approve the installation of around 750 bus shelters in area such as Royapuram, Purasawakkam, Kodambakkam and Adyar. Corporation officials said that they will continue to call for retender for the works in the areas yet to be covered.

Asian Nations chess cup

Indian men win the Silver at the Asian Nation Nations chess cup in Zhaozhuang, China; the Gold medal is won by China-1.

Iran downplays as a “technical issue”

Iran downplays as a “technical issue” a report by the UN atomic watchdog revealing that uranium traces of a higher grade than any found before had been detected in one of the country`s reactors.

New chapter in the anti-graft struggle

Opening a new chapter in the anti-graft struggle, Team Anna seeks an independent Special Investigation Team (SIT) to probe alleged charges of corruption against Prime Minister Dr. Manmohan Singh and 14 ministers in his Cabinet.

Large workforce needed to meet the target

The Railways needs a Large workforce to meet the target laying 2,500 k.m. of new lines every year under Vision 2020 Which will provide training in rail construction to engineers and technicians as against 2,500 km. only 700 km. of lines were being added annually. This was due to paucity of funds. The Railway presently had a network of 64,400 km. The addition was necessary to meet future growth Mr. Mishra said that with more private players engaged in rail construction in the country, centres like that of L & T could play a vital role in training.

Prison Bazaar get nod, jails to become factories

Central prison in Tamil Nadu are set to become factories with the state govt. clearing a proposal to establish a Prison Bazaar. According to prison sources, a qualified trainers have been identified to expose the inmates to the use of modern technology in the manufacturing industry. While competing in the market, the Freedom brand is expected to have an edge in terms of prising even as prison authorities maintain there will be no compromise on quality. The prison industry extends to nine central prisons, three special prisons for women and nine district jails across the state where approximately 11,000 inmates are lodged.

South Sudan 209th member of the FIFA

South Sudan becomes the 209th member of the FIFA, football`s global governing body.

 

Space X`s Dragon cargo capsule

American company Space X`s Dragon cargo capsule becomes the first commercial aircraft to dock at the International Space Station.

Agreement with Pakistan on visa

India and Pakistan fail to sign the long-awaited agreement on a liberalised visa regime during their Home Secretary-level talks in Islamabad, with Pakistan saying that it wants the pact to be signed at the political level.

Employment scheme targets dropouts

In a bid to bring down unemployment and provide a means of livelihood to school dropouts, the govt. has introduced a new scheme that will impart technical skills to unemployed people. As part of the initiative, 5,000 beneficiaries will be identified in 16 municipalities in Tiruvallur, Kancheepuram and Cuddalore for the Employment Oriental Technical Training scheme, jointly implemented by the Central and State govt. Man and Women in the age of 18 to 45 from families below the poverty line are eligible to apply for the free training, said Mr. Karikalan. Applicant must have passed class V.

New Stands at Chepauk Stadium

The state govt. has decided to accord approval to the recommendation of the multi-storeyed building (MSB) panel for giving planning permission to the new stands in the M.A. Chidambaram Stadium, Chepauk. The MSB panel had recommended the issue of planning permission to Tamil Nadu Cricket Association and Madras Cricket Club for the proposed construction of stands I, J and K stands and multi level car parking facility in the existing stadium at No. 5, Victoria Hostel Road, Chepauk. The govt. has also relaxed the norms pertaining to the distance between blocks, set back requirement and corridor width in exercise of decretionary powers.

Two hydropower projects in Karnataka and Kerala

The Western Ghats Ecology Expert Panel suggests setting up a stationary authority to protect the Ghats. It also recommends the scrapping of two controversial hydropower projects in Karnatka and Kerala.

Kalvarayan Hills residents reaping full benefits of state schemes

People living on the Kalvarayan Hills are getting full benefit of the Welfare Schemes launched by the State govt, according to C.Ve. Shanmugam, Commercial Taxes Minister. He said the govt. generally earmarked 30 per cent of green houses and free goats/sheep and milch animals to hills tribes. Infrastructure facilities and basic amenities on the hills had been significantly improved in the past one year. For instance, the road from Kallakurichi and Kalvarayan Hills had been recently retopped. He noted that Chief Minister had sanctioned 1.75 crore for the construction of the Pachayat Uniot Office and 66 lakh for construction of toilets for schools located on the hills.

Small town, big scores, wide grins

Students from Namakkal stale the show in the state board class XII examinations cornering all three top ranks in the state, in the category of students who studied Tamil as their first language. According to the higher secondary results declared, students in Tamil Nadu have secured a pass percentage of 86.7, a marginal 0.8 percentage point increase compared to last year. This is also the highest pass percentage that the state has secured in the past decade. Girls secured a pass percentage of 89.7 outdoing boys who recorded 83.2 percent, as has been the case for many years now. Shining the spotlight on Namakkal were six students who bagged the top three ranks. S. Sushmitha of SKV Matriculation Higher Secondary Schools, Kandampalayam, Namakkal, emerged the first rank holder with a total of 1,189. The second rank was shared by three students who scored a total of 1,188. The third rank went P. Maheswari of Vidhya Girls Higher Secondary School, Tiruchengode and B. Prabha Sankari of SKV Higher Secondary School, with each scoring a total of 1,187.

Rajiv case convict is exam topper among prisoners

A.G. Perarivalan, a convict on death row in the Rajiv Gandhi assassination case and lodged in the Vellore Central Prison, has scored 1,096 out of 1,200 marks in the Plus-two examination and topped the list for Prisoners who took the examination. Perarivalan wanted to clear Plus two because it is a peraquisite to register for Ph.D. He and Murugan got hall ticket to write plus-two exam in the Puzhal Central Prison last year. But the Prison authorities refused to transport than from Vellore to Chennai for security reasons” told Perarivalan`s mother.

European scientists made a robotic fish

Reports reveal that European scientists have made a robotic fish to improve pollution monitoring in seas and oceans. It has already been tested in the sea. The new technology reduces the time required for detecting a pollutant from weeks to seconds. The 1.5-metre-long robotic fish is likely to be used by the port authorities, water companies, aquariums and anyone who wants to monitor water quality.

Russia successfully test-fired inter-continental ballistic missile

Russia announces that it has successfully developed and test-fired a new inter-continental ballistic missile capable of piercing defence systems being developed by the US.

TAPI pipeline is signed by India and its three partners

The pact for the Turkmenistan-Afghanistan-Pakistan-India (TAPI) pipeline is signed by India and its three partners in Avaza, Turkmenistan. The pipeline will cover a distance of 1,680 km.

Steepest ever hike in Petrol price

The Centre announces the steepest-ever hike in petrol prices in the country. Petrol price in Delhi is hiked by 7.54 a litre to 73.18. Among other regions, Chennai sees a hike of  7.98, Mumbai 7.91 and Kolkata 7.85. The privious steepers hike in petrol price was 5, which had been implemented with effect from May 15, 2011.

Dalits, major beneficiaries of free goats/sheep scheme

The implementation of schemes involving the distribution of schemes involving the distribution of goats/sheep and milch cows has thrown up several interesting social indicators to the pleasant surprise of authorities. One of the flagship schemes of the present govt. is to provide goats/sheep and milch cows free to the rural poor. While the distribution of goats/sheep is being done in all districts barring Chennai, the scheme for the cows is implemented in 21 milk deficient districts. Last year, one lakh women beneficiaries were covered under the goats/sheep scheme. During 2012-13, the respective figures are 1.5 lakh and 12,000. Against the norm that 30 per cent of beneficiaries should belong to Scheduled Castes/Scheduled Tribes, the coverage has been around 41 per cent. Against the total target of one lakh beneficiaries for goats/sheep during 2011-12, 41,902 beneficiaries were SC/ST, of whom SCs accounted for 39,841.

Israeli scientists finds the optical instrument

Scientists at the Israeli Institute of Technology unveil a device which can reveal vital blood information in real time. This it does by simply shining a light through the skin. The optical instrument is no bigger than a breadbox. It is able to provide high-resolution images of blood coursing through our veins without the need for harsh fluorescent dyes.

US outfit to launch own craft

Opening a new era in private space flight, the US company Space X becomes the first commercial outfit to launch its own craft, named Dragon, towards the International Space Station (ISS).

Protection of Children from Sexual Offences Bill 2011

The Lok Sabha passes the Protection of Children from Sexual Offences Bill, 2011. The Bill, already passed by the Rajya Sabha, will protect children below 18 years from sexual abuse. It will provide for strict punishment extending upto life term for offenders.

CBI backing through enactment of a law

A parliamentary committee recommends giving the Central Bureau of Investigation (CBI) effective statutory backing through enactment of a law similar to the National Investigation Agency (NIA) Act so that the agency can probe corruption cases throughout the country without taking the consent of the States.

Demanding identify based federalism agreement

Nepal finds itself hurtling towards a political crisis as the Nepal Federation of Indigenous Nationalities, an umbrella body of ethnic communities, kick-starts a nationwide shutdown demanding identify-based federalism, opposing the agreement signed by the three main national parties on issues related to the Constitution.

New technique for remove ink from printed paper

Scientists at Cambridge University, Britain, announce that they have developed a new technique which can remove ink from printed papers. The new technique uses short pulses of laser light to delete words and images printed on paper. The laser vaporises the toner ink without damaging the paper. This invention opens up the prospect of future computer printers and photocopiers having an “unprint” function to allow paper to be reused.

Banga Bibhushan award

Eminent actress Suchitra Sen is honoured with West Bengal`s highest award Banga Bibhushan.

Rome International tennis championship

Russias Maria Sharapova wins the womens singles title at the Rome International tennis championship in Rome, Italy, beating Chinas Li Na in the final.</span><br style="color: #282828;" /><span style="color: #282828;">Spains Rafael Nadal clinches the men`s singles title at the Rome International tennis championship, beating Serbian World No. 1 Novak Djokovic in the final in Rome, Italy.

NATO member countries hold the Chicago Conference

NATO member countries hold the Chicago Conference. It is decided that the NATO countries would remain engaged with Afghanistan even after 2014, when the international coalition forces leave the war-torn nation.

Tallest metro pillar in the country

Rapid Metrorail of Gurgaon, Haryana, completes the construction of the tallest metro pillar in the country. The pillar has a height of 24 metres.

Medicinal garden set up near Kancheepuram

The Archaeological Survey of India (ASI), Chennai Circle, has set up a medicinal plant garden at Sri Venkatesaperumal temple in Tirumukkudal near Kancheepuram, to Commemorate 150 years of ASI. Saplings of 20 medicinal plants were planted in the garden which was inauguarated by the Superintending Archaeologist, Chennai Circle, Sathyabama Badrinath recently. The saplings were brought from Thandarai and Narasipattinam reserve forest area located near Chengalpattu.

2012 Champions League football title

English giants Chelsea win the 2012 Champions League football title, beating German contenders Bayern Munich in the final in Munich, Germany.

Shanghai Diamond League meet

Chinese hurdler Liu Xiang wins the mens 100m hurdles title at the Shanghai Diamond League meet in Shanghai, China; Veronica Campbell-Brown of Jamaica wins the womens 100m Gold.

G8 Destabilising the global economy

The Group of Eight (G8) leaders hold a summit in Camp David, USA. They discuss ways to prevent the worsening eurozone crisis from destabilising the global economy. The leaders pledge to work on a package that balances growth with debt reduction.

78 Left wing extremist-affected districts by road link

The Union Cabinet clears a 8,500-crore package for connecting 6,000 habitations in 78 Left wing extremist-affected districts by road link.

White babies became a minority in USA.

Data released by the US Census Bureau reveals that for the first time ever, white babies have become a minority in USA. It suggests that the whites may become a minority in America a few years before 2040, the originally projected year for the same.

New consumer price index (CPI)

New consumer price index (CPI) data reveals that retail inflation breached the double-digit mark at 10.32 percent in April 2012, primarily owing to a surge in prices of vegetables, milk, edible oils and protein-based items.

IAAF World Challenge meet

American sprinters Justin Gatlin and Carmelita Jeter wins the mens and womens 100m titles, respectively, at the IAAF World Challenge meet in Daegu, South Korea.

More Welfare measures for Sri Lankan refugees

The State govt. announced some more Welfare measures for Sri Lankan Tamil refugees living in camps. It increased financial assistance in the event of unnatural death of refugees from  15,000 to 25,000. Funeral expenses were increased from 2,500 to 5,000. Making another announcements, Finance Minister, Who deputised for Chief Minister Jayalalithaa said that a 10 per cent increase in the basic pay of contract employees of the Tamil Nadu Ex-Servicemen`s Corporation would be affected, benefiting about 6,800 employees. The monthly grant of  1,000 for the second world war veterans would be increased to 2,000, while the monthly assistance of  800 for widows of such veterons would upto 1,500.

Committee formed to recruit forest personnel

A committee has been formed to recruit forest personnel as and when vacancies arise for the posts of forester, forest guard and forest watcher, Chief Minister announced in the Assembly. She said that it was essential to fill vacant posts at the field level in the Forest Department. Similar to the recruitment procedures followed by the Tamil Nadu Uniformed Services Recruitment Board to select personnel for police service, the Tamil Nadu Forest Uniformed Services Recruitment Committee would recruit forest personnel at the State level.

Welfare Scheme for more drivers

To lake welfare schemes to more drivers in the unorganised sector Chief Minister Changed the name of the Tamil Nadu Autorickshaw and Taxi drivers Welfare Board as Tamil Nadu unogranised Drivers Welfare Board. In a suo motu statement in the Assembly. She said there were about 10 lakh drivers in the unorganised sector according to estimates but at present only 1.39 lakh were members in the present board. The name has been changed and an awareness drive will be conducted to enrol more members, she said.

Countdown begins for Teacher Eligibility Test

The countdown has begun for the first Teacher Eligibility Test to be conducted by the Teacher Recruitment Board (TRB) on June 3. From model question papers uploaded by the TRB on its website and model papers brought out by private publishers, to coaching institute offering candidates seem to be availing of all the help that is possible to crack TET. The test is mandatory for secondary grade teachers and graduate assistants appointed for govt. aided and unaided institutions on and after August 23,2010, as mandated by the Right to Education (RTE) Act.

Raja gets bail, walks out of Tihar jail

After spending nearly 15 months in the Tihar jail, New Delhi, the former Telecom Minister, A. Raja facing trial in the 2G Spectrum allocation case, was granted bail by a special CBI court. Mr. Raja was arrested by the CBI on Feb. 2, 2011 and he was in its custody till February 17. After that he has been in judicial custody. Mr. Raja, who is main accused in the case, is the last of the 12 accused to get bail. This was the first time since his arrest that be moved a bail application. Special CBI judge O.P. Saini said, “Almost the entire evidence in the case is documenting in nature and the same is in the custody of the court. In the end, considering the progress of the trial, the period of custody of the accused and the fact that all the other accused have been released on bail, I am of the opinion that further detention of the occused would not serve any purpose.”

Shooting World Cup

Niccolo Campriani of Italy and Katrina Emmons of Czech Republic win the mens and womens air rifle titles at the Shooting World Cup in Milan, Italy.

Swap facility for SAARC member-nations

In a bid to shore up regional co-operation in economic and financial spheres, the RBI decides to set up a $2-billion swap facility for SAARC member-nations. This facility will be available in both Indian rupee and foreign currency.

Fourth tiger reserve in State

Sathyamangalam will be the State`s fourth tiger reserve with the govt. promising to create a new reserve for the big cats spread over 1.40 lakh hectares from the present sanctuary limits. The govt. notified 1,41,161 hectares of reserve forests in Sathyamangalam as a wildlife sanctuary in August 2011. To protect the sanctuary and the tiger habitat, it decided to create the fourth tiger reserves in Mudumalai, Anaimudi and Kalakad – Mundanthurai. The tiger count in the state at present is 163 and the number is steedily going up in the Sathyamangalam reserve forests.

Arasu cable to go digital in the city

Setting a subscriber base target of one crore this year, Arasu Cable Corporation is all set to go digital in the city. “The subscriber base of the govt-owned cable corporation has increased to 49.53 lakh as on April 30, 2012 from 4.94 lakh in Sept. 2, 2011. The operator hose is 21,123 now”. Action is being taken to increase the subscriber base to one crore. The Corporation is taking steps to start its services in the Chennai metropolitan area in digital mode soon.

Five MoUs attract 5,700 cr. investment

The State govt. signed five memorandum of understanding (MoUs) on a single day attracting investments amounting to 5,700 crore for projects that are expected to create 9,530 job opportunities in the manufacturing sector. Announcing this, Chief Minister Jayalalithaa told the Assembly that her govt. had signed MoUs with Dainnler India Commercial Vehicles Private Ltd., India Yamaha Motor Ltd., Ashok Leyland – Nissan Motor Company Ltd., Eicher Motors Ltd. and Phillips Carbon Black Ltd.

7th President of France

Mr. Francois Hollande is officially inaugurated as the 7th President of France`s Fifth Republic.

PM accelerating investment in the infrastructure

Worried over the countrys declining growth rate, supply constraints and weakening investor confidence, the Prime Ministers Office (PMO) proposes the setting up of a special purpose vehicle (SPV) for accelerating investment in the infrastructure, mineral resources, and oil and natural gas exploration sectors.

Exports from Tamil Nadu cross $33.50 billion

Exports from Tamil Nadu during 2011-12, crossed $33.50 billion, 26 per cent higher than the previous years export, according to the Federation of Indian Export Organisation (FIEO). The States share in 2011-12 was 11 per cent of the country`s exports. The growth rate registered by the state is higher than the national growth rate of 21 per cent, according to M. Rafeeque Ahmed, President of the FIEO. It is also stated that as per the Vision 2023 document, investment to the tune of  4.5 lakh crore was envisaged in the energy sector.

Templeton Prize

The Dalai Lama is conferred the prestigious Templeton Prize in London, in recognition of his contribution to “affirming lifes spiritual dimensions". The award, given by the Templeton Foundation, carries £ 1.1 million in cash. It is the worlds largest annual monetary award given to an individual and honours a living person who has made exceptional contribution to humanity.

Asian junior hockey championship

Malaysia win the Asian junior hockey championship, beating Pakistan 2-1 in the final in Malacca, Malaysia.

US over the stalling of NATO supply lines

Corneted by the US over the stalling of NATO supply lines, Pakistan announces that it is “ready to move on” and “continue to be a facilitator” in the global war on terror.

Downgrades three top private Indian banks

Rating agency Moody`s downgrades three top private Indian banks _ ICICI Bank, HDFC Bank and Axis Bank _ and the Life Insurance Corporation of India (LIC).

Chennai based Perfint gets biotech award

Chennai-based health equipment company Perfint Healthcare Corporation has won the Department of Biotechnology`s Biotech Product and Process Development and Commercialisation award for this year. A citation noted that the company was a world leader in planning and targeting solutions for image-guided international procedures with emphasis on oncology and pain care.

District industries centres to be modernised

The district industries centres in the State will be modernised at a cost of  50 crore to prepare the micro, small and medium enterprises (MSME) to face the challenges from globalisation and liberalisation, Chief Minister said. Besides modernising the buildings of the district industries centres, new buildings would be constructed for the centres that were functioning from rented buildings. These centres will be provided with computers and other communication equipments. The employees of these centres will be given training to improve their skills, she said.

Chief Minister announced 500 MW gas-based project

Chief Minister unveiled a slew of schemes to boost the states industrial growth, including a 500 MW power project making use of the gas from the Kochi-Bangalore re-gassified LNG (Liquified Natural Gas) Pipeline in the first phase “The project cost is 2000 crore”, Chief Minister said while making suo motu statement in the Assembly. Also she said the Tamil Nadu Industrial Development Corporation (TIDCO) would set up a joint venture company for the purpose. The project would be expanded in five years and around 10,000 crore would be invested. “GAIL will supply gas for industries and domestic consumption through this pipeline. This project will be implemented at cost of  1000 crore.

US scientists _ mosquito repellant cloths

Scientists at the US Department of Energys Lawrence Berkley National Laboratory announce that they have developed a paper-thin generator that harnesses the mechanical energy of ones footsteps. These “living generators” use viruses to convert the soles of one`s shoes into electricity.

Europe protests anti-capitalist

Protests are staged across Europe as anti-capitalist “Occupy” campaigners take to the streets amid growing anger over their governments` market-driven policies that have resulted in millions of job losses and plunged the continent into its worst post-war economic crisis.

TRAI appointed Chairman

Commerce Secretary Mr. Rahul Khullar is appointed Chairman of the Telecom Regulatory Authority of India.

`Benchmark` plates to ensure Metro Rail track alignment

With the Metro Rail work picking up pace, officials of Grammon India, who are among the firms selected for setting up underground stations, have surving into action. On May 11th they installed Benchmark plates to ensure proper alignment of rail tracks. These plates will be in place at various points in the vicinity of the track until the completion of the work and will be used as standard reference points. The plates also called as MS plates are implemented on pillars on the ground level and roof tops.

Indian athletes bag three gold medals

Indian athletes bag three Gold medals at the Asian Grand Prix in Chonburi, Thailand; the Gold winners are: R. Maheswary (mens triple jump), P. Kunhumohammed (mens 400 m) and M.R. Poovamma (women`s 400 m).

UN adopts global guidelines

In a move hailed by rights groups as a step against exploitative “land grabbing”, the UN adopts global guidelines to defend the land rights of poor farmers and recognise informal indigenous claims.

Maldives President visits India

Visiting Maldives President Mr. Mohammed Waheed calls on Prime Minister Dr. Manmohan Singh in New Delhi. Dr. Singh assures Mr. Waheed of continued “strong Indian support” for the development of Maldives.

State to pay tuition, special fees of BC, MBC, DC students

The entire tuition fees and special fees of students belonging to the Backward Classes (BC), Most Backward Classes (MBC), and Denotified Communities (DC) would be borne by the State Government. The govt. was footing the entire examination fees of there students, but their tuition fees and special fees were not fully reimbursed by the govt. Hereafter, as was done in the case of Adi Dravida students, as many as 75,000 BC, MBC and DC students would get their tuition fees and special fees paid by the govt. itself. Besides students belonging to BC, MBC, Denotified and Minority Communities who are among the top 1,000 in the 12th Standard Public Examination, would get an incentive of   3,000 each per annum till they completed their graduation.

Further cut in tariff for powerloom weavers

Chief Minister Jayalalithaa announced further reduction in the power tariff for power loom weavers which, she said, would cost the govt. an additional  59.69 crore. She said the existing scheme of free power supply to weavers who consumed upto 500 units in two months would continue and it would benefit 69,476 weavers. Weavers who consume between 501 and 1000 units need to pay only 2 per unit instead of  4. This concession is in addition to the one rupee per unit subsidy already being enjoyed by them. The weavers whose consumption was between 1001 and 1500 units needed to pay 3 insteed of  4

State Resource Centre for the disabled to come up in Chennai

The govt. will set up a State Resource Centre in Chennai, the first of its kind in the country, for the benefit of parents of the differently-abled to help them understand the requirements of their Children, Chief Minister Jayalalithaa said. Through the centre, differently abled and their parents can make use of the services of doctors life skill trainers, speech theropists and experts dealing with other disabilities attached to the departments of health and welfare of the differently abled, Chief Minister Jayalalithaa said. There will be a separate unit in the centre, providing implementation on various disabilities, treatment and counselling available and about centres in other places dealing with the disabled. A booklet on various centre in India will also be published and it would be of great help to the parents Chief Minister said.

Chetput lake may become tourist attractive

In an effort to rejuvenate the Chetpet lake with a water spread of nine acres, the Fisheries Department is considering to develop the spot into a tourist attraction. As part of the proposal, it will remove water hyacinth plants, desilt the lake and perhaps develop space for visitors to sit and watch. The lake, which is in the heart of the city opposite the Ega theatre complex, has a beautiful island in the middle with a tree. Residents of Chetpet recalled that tell the 1940s members of an angles club used to utilise the lake. The would fish from the island in the middle.

Longer wait for CDH modernisation

The Chennai Corporation council gave yet another extension of deadline for completion of the modern 1.1 lakhs sq.ft. hospital that is being constructed on a 8.5 acre plot on the premises of CDH on Tiruvottiyur High Road. Even though the council approved the extension of the deadline for completion from Nov. 15, 2011 to March 14, 2012, work on the site is yet to be completed the three modern blocks with 120 beds each, the civic body is planning to complete only two blocks in the first phase. The third block will take additional time to be completed. Now, the existing hospital has only around 200 beds in old buildings that there are insufficient for a large city facing consistent challenges to public health. The modern facility coming up at a cost of  13.53 crore will be a boon to a large number of patients not only in Chennai but also neighbouring districts. Patients from other states such as Andhra Pradesh are also making use of the hospital.

Chennai to host Asian athletics meet next year

Chennai will host the Asian Athletics Championship in August 2013, Chief Minister said and announced a 40 crore package to renovate the Jawaharlal Nehru Stadium, Chennai and relay its track and upgrade facilities to bring them on a par with international standards Chief Minister said the Asian Athletics Association had agreed to conduct the meet in India and the Athletics Federation of India hold the event in Chennai with the support of the State govt.