December, 2014

India’s first woman DGCA

Ms. M. Sathiyavathy was appointed as the first woman Director-General of Civil Aviation of India on Dec. 31, 2014. Currently, Ms. Sathiyavathy in Additional Secretary and Financial Advisor in the Civil Aviation Ministry. A 1982-batch Indian Administrative Service (IAS) officer of the Union Territories cadre, she was earlier chief secretary in the Puducherry government.

First Vice-Chairman of NITI Aayog appointed

Prime Minister Mr. Narendra Modi appointed noted Indian-American economist Mr. Arvind Panagariya as the Vice-Chairman of the newly formed National Institution for Transforming India (NITI) Aayog on Jan. 5, 2015. Mr. Bibek Debroy, another economist, and former DRDO chief Mr. V.K. Saraswat were appointed as full-time members. Union Ministers Mr. Rajnath Singh, Mr. Arun Jaitley, Mr. Suresh Prabhu and Mr. Radha Mohan Singh were appointed as Ex-Officio members while Mr. Nitin Gadkari, Ms. Smriti Zubin Irani and Mr. Thawar Chand Gehlot will be Special Invitees.

Beji Caid takes over as Tunisian President

Mohamed Beji Caid Essebsi was sworn in as the President of Tunisia on Dec. 31, 2014. He became the first freely elected leader of Tunisia since it gained independence from France in 1956.

Chennai on Resilient Cities List

The Chennai Corporation has come up with a revised plan to keep the Marina beach clean by engaging 120 sanitary workers to exclusively maintain the 4-7 km stretch from Napier’s Bridge to Light House. “Poor maintenance has dragged the Chennai Corporation into litigation with the National Green Tribunal besides prompting newspapers to publish critical reports,” the resolution read. The Corporation also announced that Chennai has been selected for the 100 Resillent Cities (100 RC) Centennial Challenge, a $100 million initiative to build urban resilience in world cities promoted by the Rockefeller Foundation (RF). With promised supply of ‘significant resources’ to the civic body, RF would share its expertise and help leverage funds from private sectors predominantly. As a member of the 100 RC Network, is would gain knowledge of successful resillience models implemented world over.

Give to State Unallocated KKNPP Power

In line with the allocation of 100 MW out of 150 MW of unallocated power from the first unit of the Kudankulam Atomic Power Plant (KKNPP) to Tamil Nadu on September 27, 2012, Chief Minister O. Panneerselvam on 29th Dec. urged Prime Minister Narendra Modi to ensure that Tamil Nadu is granted 100 MW of unallocated power generated from unit II of KKNPP. The Chief Minister pointed out that Tamil Nadu had provided all necessary inputs like land, water etc. for the expenditious and successful completion of the project even as neighbouring states were not forth coming to take the initiative.

Minor Reshuffle of Governors

In a minor reshuffle of Governors announced by the Rashtrapati Bhavan on December 30, 2014, Mr. Aziz Qureshi, Governor of Uttarakhand, was transferred and appointed as Governor of Mizoram for the remainder of his term. Meghalaya Governor, Mr. Krishan Kant Paul was appointed as the new Governor of Uttarakhand; he will also continue to hold the additional charge of Manipur till further orders. Mr. Keshari Nath Tripathi, Governor of West Bengal, will discharge the functions of the Governor of Meghalaya, in addition to this own duties.

Kohli will lead India in the Test Cricket Matches

Mahendra Singh Dhoni retires from Test Cricket after the third Test between India and Australia concluded in a draw at the Melbourne Cricket Ground in Australia. Virat Kohli will lead India in the final Test in Sydney.

Dhoni announces his retirement from Test Cricket

India’s World Cup-winning captain Mahendra Singh Dhoni announced his retirment on Dec. 30, 2014 from Test cricket shortly after the third Test between India and Australia ended in a draw at the Melbourne Cricket Ground in Australia. Dhoni, who is one of the world’s highest-earning sportsmen, has chosen “to retire from Test cricket with immediate effect in order to concentrate on the 50-over and Twenty-20 formats of the game”, a statement from the Board of Control for Cricket in India said.
Dhoni : Test debut (cap 251) 2 Dec. 2005 v Sri Lanka; Last Test 26 Dec. 2014 v Australia.

Next-generation ‘thinking’

Indian-origin researchers develop a next-generation ‘thinking’ robotic sea turtle capable of performing complicated tasks such as surveillance and energy harvesting.

Online Regn to give Boost to Make-in-India

All legal hurdles would be removed for ensuring growth of industries under the ‘Make In India’ campaign, Union Minister of State for Commerce and Industry Nirmal Sitharaman said on 27th Dec. “The Central government’s ‘Make In India’ concept is to change of mindset of the industry. Entrepreneurs are lacking confidence and they should have the ‘killer instinct’ for achieving success,” she said addressing the third edition of ‘Resilient Tirupur’ organised by the Confederation of Indian Industry (CII). She said industrialists have not so far questioned the irrelevant rules and regulations, which are posing a threat to them. “We are keen on removing those legal obstacles soon,” she said.

Incubation centre coming to city

Chennai city is all set to get a brand new incubatioin centre in 2015, which would help develop entrepreneurship and self employment among the youth, said Kalraj Mishra, Union Minister of Micro, Small and Medium Enterprises (MSMEs).

Indonesia AirAsia Flight with 162 people on board

Indonesia Air Asia Flight QZ8501, with 162 people on board, mostly Indonesian, goes missing after pilots asked to change course to avoid had weather during a flight from Indonesia’s Surabaya city to Singapore. After three days of frantic search, debris of the missing AirAsia aircraft carrying 162 people is found in the Java Sea off Indonesia.

Jharkhand CM Raghubar Das

BJP-led coalition wins Assembly polls in Jharkhand, Mr. Raghubar Das takes over as the State’s first non-tribal Chief Minister.

After service, social worker gifts house to govt.

Service to man is service to God. This could not have been truer if we were to go by the example of 82-year-old Datchayani. Widowed at the age of 15, the fragile-looking octogenarian of Timiri, has come a king way, which has not been easy. Since the fear of a solitary life gripped her early, she adopted her elder sister’s daughter, but the joy of bringing up and mentoring a child was shortlived as the girl grew up and entered wedlock, leaving Datchayani once again lonely. In the twilight of a life lived well, she said she has offered to donate her house, where she has been residing, to the Social Welfare Department (SWD) and submitted the documents of the property to Collector Nanthagopal.

Discovery of Harappan Houses in U.P.

The Archaeological Survey of India (ASI) discovers a 4,000-year-old Harappan House in Chandyan village in Baghpat district of Uttar Pradesh. The discovery is important since, according to the archaeologists, this is the first time that evidence of habitation pertaining to that period has been found in the Upper Doab region between Ganga and Yamuna.

Dhoni breaks the World Record in stumpings

Indian captain Mahendra Singh Dhoni breaks the World Record for the most number of stumpings in international cricket, after he effected his 134th dismissal on day two of the third cricket Test against Australia in Melbourne.

India Cements Board clears ` 500 cr. fund raising proposal

India Cements Ltd. (ICL) is cautiously optimistic about its performance for the next year following a ‘difficult and tough year’ that the company has faced. The company has also received the shareholders approval for raising ` 500 crore through qualified institutional placements (QIP) or foreign currency convertible bonds (FCCB) to meet its capital expenditure needs. According to the company’s Managing Director and Vice-Chairman N. Srinivasan, who addressed the concerns of shareholders on the company’s performance, next year is expected to prove better than the previous one.

Dec. 25 Good Governance Day

The Union Government celebrates Dec. 25, as the Good Governance Day in a tribute to former Prime Minister Mr. Atal Bihari Vajpayee on his 90th Birthday.

New Slaughter House to function within 30 days

The shifting of operatioins in the existing slaughter house to the new modern abattoir in Perambur will be done within 30 days, the Madras High Court was asusred on 23rd on Dec. When the PIL from K Gafoor Basha of Seven Wells came up before the first bench of Chief Justice S.K. Kaul and Justice M. Sathyanarayanan, Additional Advocate-General prayed for grant of 30 days time to shift the existing one to the new slaughter house, situated within the same premises on Dr. Ambedkar Colony Road in Puliyanthope.

Dr. K. Radhakrishnan chosen for prestigious for journal nature

ISRO Chairman, Dr. K. Radhakrishnan is chosen by the prestigious journal Nature as one of the top ten scientists of 2014. The successful launch of India’s Mars Orbiter Mission, GSLV Mark III and successful re-entry of the unmanned crew module were some of the landmark achievements under his chairmanship.

Bharat Ratna Award

The Government announces to confer India’s highest civilian honour – Bharat Ratna – on former Prime Minister Mr. Atal Bihari Vajpayee and freedom fighter Madan Mohan Malaviya.

Yash Chopra Memorial Award

Bollywood iconic star Amitabh Bachchan is honoured with the Yash Chopra Memorial Award. He is the second recipient of the award after melody queen Lata Mangeshkar in 2013.

Pakistan and Russia sign an energy deal

Signalling an improvement in their relations, for the first time, Pakistan and Russia sign an energy deal worth $1.7 billion to lay a gas pipleine from Karachi to Lahore.

Assembly polls in J & K and Jharkhand

In the Assembly polls in two States, the People’s Democratic Party (PDP), with 28 seats, emerges as the single largest party in Jammu and Kashmir, while the Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) secures 25 seats. In Jharkhand BJP, along with its ally, the All Jharkhand Students’ Union (AJSU), secures majority and is all set to from government.

SASTRA Prize for Oxford Scholar

The 2014 SASTRA-Ramanujan Prize was awarded to James Maynard of Oxford University, England, and the University of Montreal, Canada, at a function held in Sastra Ramanujan Centre, Kumbakonam on 21st Dec. Mangalam Srinivasan, Special Advisor, Kennedy school of Government in Harvard University and fellow of Certified Trust and Financial Advisor (CFTA), Harvard University, presented the prestigious award to the 27-year-old Maynard.

Poomani wins top honour for Subaltern Saga Agnaadi

Eminent novelist Poomani, 67, has won the Sahitya Akademi Award for Tamil Literature, 2014, for his fictional, historical novel Agnaadi, a fascinating narration, yet a painful storey of the infamous 1899 Sivakasi riots – when the Nadar community fought the opporession by dominant communities and demanded entry into a Hindu temple. Poomani has narrated the history of subaltern people living in Karisal Bhoomi (black soil) in the interior part of southern Tamil Nadu in his literary works. “Caste and religious politics pursued for ages by Indian society have not yet been eliminated. Rather, they are operating powerfully in the 21st century but covertly under the vocabularies of democracy and secularism,” he said.

Verma sworn in as US Ambassador to India

Mr. Richard Rahul Verma was sworn in as the US Ambassador to India on Dec. 20, 2014. 46-year-old Mr. Verma, the first-ever Indian-American to be the top US diplomat in New Delhi, is a lawyer by profession, with extensive experience in national security and nonproliferation issues.

P. Mishra appointed as DG of CRPF

Senior IPS officer Mr. Prakash Mishra on Dec. 22, 2014 took over at the new chief of India’s largest paramilitary and lead anti-Naxal operations force CRPF. Mr. Mishra, an ex-Odisha police DGP and 1977-batch IPS officer will serve the office tille Feb. 2016.

First International Space Station

In a first, International Space Station crew craft a new tool, a ratchet, in space using their specially designed zero gravity 3D printer and a design emailed from the ground.

Kabaddi World Cup 2014

India defeat Pakistan and New Zealand, respectively to win Men’s and Women’s title of Kabaddi World Cup 2014 in Jalandhar, Punjab.

Kolkata wins ISL beating Kerala

Atletico de Kolkata win the inaugural edition of Indian Super League in Navi Mumbai, Maharashtra after Mohammaed Rafique’s most important goal help beat Kerala Blasters.

Obama warns North Korea

US President Mr. Barack Obama warns North Korea that it would face relation for cripping cyber attack on Sony Pictures.

NASA’s Kepler spacecraft

NASA’s Kepler spacecraft, on a new mission, makes its first discovery of an exoplanet-a super-Earth 180 light years from Earth, towards the constellation Pisces.

International Terrorist

Cowing under international pressure Pakistan books key handler of the 26/11 attacks, Zaki-ur Rehman Lakhvi, afresh. Lakhvi, who is declared an international terrorist by the UN, was granted bail a day earlier by a Pakistani anti-terror court.

First Indian-origin US Surgeon-General

Mr. Vivek Hallegere Murthy (37) took over as the 19th Surgeon-General of the United States on Dec. 18, 2014. Mr. Murthy is the youngest person and the first person of Indian origin to hold the post.

US department of defence successfully tests

The US department of defence successfully tests a bullet – Exacto-that can change direction after it has been fired, apparently using fins built into the shell to direct it in the air and account for wind and targets moving.

Miss World 2014

South Africa Rolene Strauss is crowned Miss World 2014 in London, UK. Miss Hungary was the runner-up and Miss US secured the third spot, while India’s Koyal Rana finished in top 10.

GSLV Mk-III

GSLV Mk-III
Dec. 18, 2014 : India’s unstoppable quest for supremacy in Space resulted in yet another important feat on Dec. 18, 2014 by successful conduct of the first experimental flight of the country’s next-generation launch vehicle GSLV Mk-III from Satish DhawanSpace Centre SHAR, Sriharikota. Also known as LVM3-X/CARE, this suborbital experimental mission was intended to test the vehicle performance during the critical atmospheric phase of its flight and thus carried a passive cryogenic upper stage. ISRO’s most powerful and heaviest launch vehicle, GSLV-Mk-III was launched at 9.30 a.m. 1st, and about five and a half minutes later, carried its payload – the 3,775 kg Crew Module Atmosphere Re-entry Experiment (CARE) – to the intended height of 126 km. Following this, CARE separated from the upper stage of the launch vehicle and re-entered the atmosphere and safely landed over the Bay of Bengal with the help of its parachutes, about 21 minutes after the lift-off. Two massive S-200 solid strap-on boosters, each carrying 207 tons of solid propellants, ignited at vehicle lift-off and after functioning normally, separated 153.5 seconds later. L110 liquid stage ignited 120 seconds after lift-off, while S200s were still functioning, and carried forward for the next 204.6 seconds.
• GSLV Mk-III is ISRO’s heaviest launch vehicle yet • Over 3 tonne payload was carried by the module, which separated at 126 km altitude, and plunged into sea • The crew module withstood 1,600 degrees Celsius temperature at re-entry into atmosphere • Re-entry is a key manoeuvre in India’s preparation for future manned missions • The mission budget was ` 155 crore; ` 15 crore of crew module.

NASA’s Mars Curiosity rover finds methane

In its quest to find evidence of extra-terrestrial life, NASA’s Mars Curiosity rover finds methane, the gas that on Earth is strongly tied to life, in Martian atmosphere. The rover also finds organic chemicals in the red planet’s soil. The rover, which has travelled around 5 miles since landing on Mars, has been exploring an area known as Mount Sharp.

US and Cuba make a historic breakthrough in their Cold War

The United States and Cuba make a historic breakthrough in their Cold War stand-off, moving to revive diplomatic ties and launch measures to case a five-decade US trade embargo.

ADB says that India is on trck to achieve 5.5%

The Asian Development Bank (ADB) says that India is on track to achieve projected 5.5 percent economic growth rate in 2014-15 as declining oil prices present a golden opportunity for many beneficial reforms.

Jugnauth back as Mauritius Prime Minister

Veteran politician, Mr. Anerood Jugnauth (84), took over as Mauritius Prime Minister on Dec. 17, 2014 after a landslide victory. Mr. Juganauth, former President and Prime Minister, won 47 out of 62 seats.

Golfer of the year 2014

Rory Mcllroy of Ireland is named the 2014 Race to Dubai European Tour Golfer of the Year. This is for the second time that he has won this award.

132 School Children killed

About 132 children of the Army Public School in Peshawar, Pakistan are massacred in cold blood in a hornific militant attack. Taking the responsibility, Thrik-i-Taliban cites anti-terrorism operations by the Pakistan Army the reason behind the attack.

India bans IS

India bans Islamic State (IS) under the Unlawful Activities (prevention) Act.

Viswanathan Anand win London Classic Title

Five-time world champion Viswanathan Anand of India wins his maiden London Classic title after defeating British Grandmaster Michael Adams in the fifth and final round.

Iranian gunman’s resque operation

Two hostages and gunman are killed in the rescue operation in Sydney, Australia. In a siege lasting 17 hours, an Iranian gunman identified as Sheikh Haron had held hostage a number of people in Lindt Chocolat Cafe in Sydney’s Martin Place.

Wholesale inflation growth

Declining for the fifth straight month, the pace of wholesale inflation drops to a six-year low of zero percent in November 2014, raising hopes of a revival in investments and growth. Also, exports growth turns positive again at 7.25% for the period, raising the hope that the $340 billion target for the current fiscal will be met.

Champions Trophy crown

Olympic champion Germany defeat Pakistan 2-0 in the final and lift the Champions Trophy at the Kalinga Stadium in Bhubaneshwar, Odisha. This is their tenth Champions Trophy crown.

World sets the stage for a new climate treaty

A day behind schedule, the world sets the stage for a new climate treaty by agreeing to the Lima Call for Climate Action, which was slammed by NGOs and people’s movements.

Abe re-elected as Japan premier

Japanese Prime Minister Mr. Shinzo Abe won a comfortable re-election for another four-year term on Dec. 14, 2014 in a snap poll that he had billed as a referendum on his economic policies.

Drink Driving to be taken as PIL

The First Bench of Madras High Court has treated a portion of the order of a single judge on drunken driving as a separate PIL and decided a hear it itself. The order relates to the 16-point queries raised by the judge with regard to enforcement of prohibition while hearing an appeal for enhanced compensation filed by relatives of two road accident victims. The accident claims appeal, however, will be heard by the single judge as usual, the Bench said.

Pawan Chamling became the longest-serving CM

Sikkim Chief Minister Mr. Pawan Chamling became the longest-serving Chief Minister in India. He completed his 20 years in office on Dec. 12, 2014. He has been Chief Minister of Sikkim since Dec. 12, 1994. Earlier, the longest serving CM was West Bengal’s ex-CM Jyoti Basu (23 years – From 21 June 1977, to 6 November 2000).

Coal Mines Bill

The Lok Sabha passes the Coal Mines (Special Provisions) Bill, 2014.

Fidel Castro is awarded China’s version of the Nobel Peace Prize

Cuban leader Mr. Fidel Castro is awarded China’s version of the Nobel Peace Prize, the Confucius Peace Prize, recognising the revolutionary’s important contribution to the world peace.

June 21 as International Day of Yoga – UN

At India’s initiative, the United Nations General Assembly declares June 21 as ‘International Day of Yoga’, recognising Yoga’s holistic approach to health and well-being.

7 pacts are signed between India and Russia

Seven pacts are signed after Mr. Narendra Modi and Mr. Vladimir Putin’s talks in New Delhi. Russia accepts India’s offer to make light-utility helicopters jointly.

New Chief of SPG

Mr. Vivek Srivastav was appointed as the new Inspector General of the Special Protection Group (SPG) on Dec. 10, 2014. A 1989-batch Indian Police Service officer of the Gujarat cadre, Mr. Srivastav will be in charge of the agency responsible for Prime Minister’s security.

Kailash, Malala were jointly awarded Nobel Peace Prize 2014

Mr. Kailash Satyarthi of India and Ms. Malala Yousafzai of Pakistan were jointly awarded Nobel Peace Prize 2014 for their struggle against the suppression of children and young people and for the right of all children to education.
Kailash Satyarthi : Child rights activist Mr. Kailash Satyarthi of India, along with Ms. Malala Yousafzai of Pakistan, received the Nobel Peace Prize 2014 on Dec. 10, 2014 in Oslo, Norway. Mr. Satyarthi ended his Nobel acceptance speech with “Let us march!” Summing up the importance of the award, he said, “This is very important for millions and millions of children who are denied their childhood, who are denied their education:. Mr.Satyarthi’s organisation Bachpan Bachao Andolan prides itself on liberating more than 80,000 children from bonded labour in factories and workshops across India and has networks of activists in more than 100 countries.

Union Govt. decides to decriminalise ‘attempt to sucide’

The Union Government decides to decriminalise ‘attempt to suicide’ by scrapping it from the Indian Penal Code. Section 309 of the IPC, 1860, prescribes one-year imprisonment and a fine if a person is found guilty of attempting to commit suicide.

15th Annual India-Russia Summit

Russian President Mr. Vladimir Putin arrives in New Delhi to attend the 15th Annual India-Russia Summit. Mr. Putin and Prime Minister Mr. Narendra Modi will make a rare joint appearance at the World Diamond Congress in New Delhi. In addition, the two countries are expected to sign 15 agreements in various fields, including new nuclear power project units in Kudankulam.

Angela Merkel was re-elected

German Chancellor Ms. Angela Merkel was re-elected unopposed as head of Conservative Christian Democrats party on Dec. 9, 2014. She was elected as the head of the party for the eighth time by winning 96.7 percent of delegates’ votes. She has been the leader of the Christian Democratic Union (CDU) since 2000 and the Chancellor of Germany since 2005. She is the first woman to hold either office.

US and NATO close their combat command in Afghanistan

The US and NATO close their combat command in Afghanistan, more than 13 years after invading the country in the wake of Sep. 11 terror attacks to target al-Qaeda and Osama bin Laden.

MoU is sgined between AP and Singapore

An MoU is signed between Andhra Pradesh and Singapore to built capital city.

TN Settles 14.93L pending cases at mega Lok Adalat

Tamil Nadu has settled over 14.93 lakh pending cases and distributed a record compensation of Rs. 1390.77 crore at the mega National Lok Adalat held across the state on Dec. 6, according to executive chairman of TN Legal Services Authority Justice S.K. Agnihotri. The cases include prelitigation cases, pending cases, revenue cases, cases pertaining to consumer courts, Debt Recovery Tribunal, Debt Recovery Appellate Tribunal as Well as pension cases, he said during a brief interaction with reporters. In the Madurai Bench, a total of 112 cases were settled and ` 6.31 crore compensation was distributed. In the Madras High Court, a total of 250 cases were settled and ` 14.10 crore was distributed as compensation.

GSAT-16

Communication satellite GSAT-16 with 48 transponders, the largest ever carried by a communication spacecraft built by Indian Space Research Organisation (ISRO), is injected into the intended Geosynchronous Transfer Orbit (GTO) from Kourou in French Guiana.

China starts a major water supply projects

China starts a major water supply project in Sri Lanka, using “soft water” to deepen its relationship with Colombo.

World’s largest human formation of a national flag

30,000 Chennaiites register a Guinness World Record after they come together at the YMCA grounds in Chennai, Tamil Nadu to create the world’s largest human formation of a national flag, surpassing Pakistan in this feat.

World Tamil Meet Wants Big Show by TN at Kuala Lumpur

The International Movement for Tamil Culture (IMTC), Indian chapter, has launched a driver to mobilise participants for the Ninth World Tamil Conference, which is scheduled to be held in Kuala Lumpur between January 29 and Feb. 1, 2015, two decades after its previous edition held in Thanjavur. Organised by the International Academy of Tamil Research (IATR) at the University of Malaya, the conference will be primarily a seminar on Tamil studies. Unlike the earlier conferences held in Tamil Nadu – Thanjavur (1995), Madurai (1981) and Chennai (1968) – or the Classical Tamil Conference at Coimbatore in 2010, the meet will have only academic sessions.

State Ranks second in Industrial Growth

Strongly denying that manufacturers were leaving Tamil Nadu and moving to other States, Tamil Nadu Industries Minister P. Thangamani on Dec. 5 said the State ranked second in GDP output after Maharashtra and that its growth rate of 7.94 per cent this year was more than the national growth rate of 4.94 per cent. The number of factories in 2013 was 40,354, while in 2014 it was 42,000, which showed that the number of factories was increasing. In the year 2011, under DMK rule, the number of employed persons was 84,21,000 but this had risen to 1.6 crore in the last three years under the AIADMK regime, proving that job opportunities were rising.

Permanent military base in Bahrain

Britain will broaden its military footprint in West Asia with the establishment of a permanent military base at the Mina Salman Port in Bahrain.

High Court Judges Seek Posthumous Bharat Ratna

While paying homage to eminent jurist and former Supreme Court Justice V.R. Krishna Iyer, the judges of Madras High Court said that his loss was irreparable not only to the legal fraternity but also to human rights activists. Justice V. Ramasubramanian said that a leading light of the judicial world was lost with the demise of Justice Krishna Iyer. Justice Iyer was one who made literature out of law and law out of social justice. Despite retiring 35 years ago, he kept a vigil on the performance of the judiciary and never hesitated to voice his concerns whenever it was required.

Modi is named ‘Asian of the Year’

Prime Minister Mr. Narendra Modi is named ‘Asian of the Year’ by Singapore Press Holdings Limited for being focused on India’s development and getting the world “excited” about the prospects of the country again.

TNSC Bank wins National Award

Tamil Nadu Cooperative Minister K. Raju on Dec. 3 received the National Award for the best State Chanelising Agency on behalf of Tamil Nadu State Co-operative Bank for providing loans to the differently-abled. The Minister received the award at a grand function held at New Delhi. The TNSC Bank is one of the channelising agencies of the National Handicapped Finance and Development Corporation. Union Ministry of Social Justice and Empowerment has chosen the TNSC Bank for this award.

K. Gnanadesikan Appointed New Chief Secretary

K. Gnanadesikan, a 1982 batch IAS officer who had hel many key positions in various departments, assumed charge as the 43rd Chief Secretary of Tamil Nadu on 2nd Dec. He replaces Mohan Verghese Chunkath, appointed Director of Anna Institute of Management, and Director General of Training. This comes within a week after he was elevated to the Chief Secretary grade along with six other IAS officers. He is the fourth Chief Secretary since May 2011. Gnanadesikan will also hold full additional charge as Vigilance Commissioner and Commissioner for Administrative Reforms.

India-Hawaii sign

Union Science and Technology Minister Dr. Harsha Vardhan signs a multilateral agreement admitting India’s participation in the development of the Thirty-Metre Telescope (TMT) in Hawaii.

MRF Becomes Global Partner for World Cup

Leading tyre manufacturer MRF Ltd. on 1st Dec. formally signed the agreement with ICC to be a global partner for the ICC World Cup 2015. KM Mammen, chairman and MD of MRF, inked the agreement with ICC chairman N Srinivasan in Chennai. The function began with a two-minute silence as a mark of respect for Australian cricketer Philip Hughes, before the World Cup trophy was unveiled. A month ago, when BCCI interim president Shivlal Yadav inked a deal with MRF whereby Indian pacers could train at the MRF Pace Foundation under Glenn McGrath, the MRF top brass had expressed their desire to be associated with the game in more ways. “The World Cup is a big stage and MRF would get good mileage by being associated with it,” said MRF director Rahul Mammen.

New CBI Director

CBI special director Mr. Anil Kumar Sinha was appointed the new CBI Director on December 2, 2014, the first agency director to be appointed with bipartisan support. The 1979-batch Bihar-cadre IPS officer, Mr. Anil Kumar, who succeeded Mr. Ranjeet Sinha, will have two-year tenure.

China and Maldives sign

China and Maldives sign an accord to conduct preliminary study on constructing a bridge that would connect capital Male with the city’s international airport. Maldives is a major element of Beijing-sponsored Maritime Silk Road project.

Successfully test in Agni-IV

India successfully tests the surface-to-surface nuclear-capable. Agni-IV ballistic missile from the Wheeler Island off Odisha coast on Dec. 2, 2014.

Saakshar Bharat gets Good Marks in TN

As the issue of children’s education holds centrestage, a much-lower profile government programme is quietly making an impact on addressing the issue of adult illiteracy, a trouble spot that comes with its own set of challenges. The Saakshar Bharat scheme, kick-started by the State Literacy Mission in 2009 to improve the literacy rate of the districts where female literacy is less than 50 pc, has managed to impart basic education to as much as four-fifths of the identified population, say officials in charge of the programme.

Chairman of Wipro Azim Premji is awarded Swiz Ambassador’s Award

Chairman of Wipor, Mr. Azim Premji is awarded Swiss Ambassador’s Award in Mumbai, Maharashtra for inspirational and socially responsible leadership.

UNFCCC seal a deal in Paris

The world’s nations gather in Peruvian capital Lima in a renewed push for a deal to roll back carbon emissions threatening future generations. The 12-day talks under the UN Framework Convention on Climate Change (UNFCCC) take place amid grim scientific warnings and to make a way to seal a deal in Paris in Dec. 2015.