1. World Press Freedom Day celebrated today
i. The World Press Freedom Day (3rd May) was observed across the world with the theme Access to Information and Fundamental Freedoms - This Is Your Right!
ii. The day proclaimed by the United Nations in 1993, is celebrated on May 3 every year.
iii. The main aim of day is to draw focus on the freedom of information, protecting journalism from censorship, and ensuring safety for journalists.
2. Parliament passes Mines and Minerals Amendment Bill, 2016
i. Parliament has passed Mines and Minerals (Development and Regulation) Amendment Bill, 2016.
ii. The bill will allow transfer of captive mines from one allotted to another without auction.
iii. The Bill also allow for merger and acquisition of companies with captive mining leases.
3. Govt launches MICE initiative for up gradation of tourism sector
i. Union government has launched an initiative named MICE which is based on meetings, incentives, conferences and exhibitions for the up gradation of tourism sector in India.
ii. As per this initiative, Tourism Ministry allocated funds to the States and Union Territories’ administrations to develop tourism-related infrastructure.
iii. Earlier Tourism Ministry has launched 'Swadesh Darshan' scheme to develop time-bound tourist circuits in the country.
4. Indian Railways sign MoU with Haryana and Punjab to plant trees alongside railway track
i. The Union Ministry of Railways and Forest Department of Haryana & Punjab have inked Memorandum of Understanding (MoU) for plantation of trees alongside Railway Track on Railway Land Boundary.
ii. The MoU paves way for planting around 5 lakh trees alongside Railway Track on Railway Land Boundary prior to Monsoon Season.
iii. With this Indian Railways can contribute substantially towards the Green India Mission.
5. Andhra Pradesh Chief Minister launched Chandranna Bima Yojana
i. Andhra Pradesh Chief Minister N. Chandrababu Naidu has inaugurated an insurance scheme 'Chandranna Bima Yojana' for the working class people.
ii. The total investment is around rs. 132 Crore for the implementation of this scheme.
iii. Under the scheme, 5 Crore workers would be covered under the scheme, 5 Lakh would be paid if the Insurer worker met with an accidental fatal and 5 Lakh for Permanent disability and Rs. 3 Lakh for Partial disability.
6. ADMM Plus Exercise on Maritime Security and Counter Terrorism begins in Brunei
i. The ADMM-Plus (ASEAN Defence Ministers’ Meeting Plus) Exercise on Maritime Security and Counter Terrorism (Ex MS & CT) has started in Brunei.
ii. The nine day exercise seeks to strengthen the strong bilateral ties and extensive maritime interactions between India and ASEAN countries.
iii. ADMM Plus Ex MS & CT is a multinational naval exercise conducted under the aegis of ADMM Plus consortium. It aims at enhancing mutual understanding with respect to maritime security issues and streamlining drills on counter-terrorism operations at sea.
7. Google acquires start-up by Indian-origin businessman
i. An American multinational technology company, Google has acquired a business technology start-up 'Synergyse' founded by an Indian-origin entrepreneur as part of its plans to scale training offerings for Google Apps to its customers and customers' users.
ii. The Toronto-based Synergyse is founded by Varun Malhotra in the year 2013. It aims to teach users how to use Google Apps.
iii. Synergyse will help users get up to speed quickly including when new features are rolled out. Till now Google did not disclose the financial details of the deal.
8. BHEL commissions 600 MW thermal power plant in MP
i. State-run Bharat Heavy Electricals Ltd (BHEL) has announced the commissioning of a 600 MW coal-based thermal power plant in Madhya Pradesh.
ii. The unit has been commissioned at the 1x600 MW Jhabua Thermal Power Project (TPP) located in Seoni district in Madhya Pradesh.
iii. The project has been developed by Jhabua Power Ltd (JPL), a subsidiary of Avantha Power & Infrastructure Ltd (APIL). This is the second project of APIL commissioned by BHEL after the 1x600 MW Avantha Bhandar TPP at Raigarh in Chhattisgarh.
9. Indian American Sikh woman elected to key Republican position
i. An Indian American Sikh woman from California, Harmeet Kaur Dhillon has been elected to an important position in the Republican party at the US national level.
ii. She was born in Chandigarh, India but raised in rural North Carolina after her Sikh parents moved to the US.
iii. She was elected as the newest national committee woman of the Republican National Committee. She was the first woman elected to this position of vice chair of the California Republican Party.
10. Three Indian Scientists elected as Fellows of The Royal Society
i. Three eminent Indian Born scientists listed in the fifty scientists elected as Fellows of the Royal Society, a premier scientific academy of the U.K and the Commonwealth.
ii. Their names had appeared on the list of 50 new fellows and 10 new Foreign Members announced by the Royal Society.
iii. They are- Physicist Sriram Ramaswamy, Director of TIFR Centre for Interdisciplinary Sciences, Hyderabad, 2nd - Biochemist Ramanujan Hegde, MRC Laboratory of Microbiology, U.K. and 3rd - Applied mathematician Lakshminarayanan Mahadevan, Harvard University.
11. Kishore Biyani appointed MD of Bharti Retail
i. Future Group’s Chief Executive Kishore Biyani has been appointed managing director of Bharti Retail as part of the reconstitution of the board following their merger pact announced last year.
ii. Rakesh Biyani, who is also a director at Future Group, has also been appointed as Joint Managing Director of Bharti Retail, which will be later renamed as Future Retail Ltd and listed on stock exchanges.
12. Rohit Sharma Signs as Brand Ambassador for Hublot Watches
i. Rohit Sharma became the Brand Ambassador of world famous Swiss luxury watch maker Hublot. The Mumbai batsman is the second cricketer who have been assigned for the role.
ii. Earlier renowned cricketer after former Australian captain Michael Clarke have been associated with the brand.
iii. The Swiss Watch company observed a lot of common between the Brand and Rohit Sharma as he combines traditional batting technique with entertainment.
13. Sachin Tendulkar to be India's goodwill ambassador at Rio Olympics
i. Cricket legend Sachin Tendulkar has agreed to become India's Olympic goodwill ambassador, alongwith actor Salman Khan and Shooter Abhinav Bindra.
ii. AR Rahman was also approached by Indian Olympic Association to become goodwill ambassadors of Indian contingent for 2016 Rio Olympics.
iii. This comes after superstar Salman Khan's appointment as goodwill ambassador created furore, with top athletes like Milkha Singh and Yogeshwar Dutt criticizing the move.
14. Virat Kohli nominated for Khel Ratna and Ajinkya Rahane for Arjuna Award
i. BCCI has nominated Indian Test captain Virat Kohli for the prestigious Rajiv Gandhi Khel Ratna Award and his teammate Ajinkya Rahane for Arjuna Award. These nominations by BCCI have come after a gap of four years.
ii. Other sports bodies and associations are also in the process of sending their nominations. Sports persons nominated for the Khel Ratna Award so far are Incheon Asian Games gold medallist shooter Jitu Rai, squash star Dipika Pallikal, athlete Tintu Luka and ace golfer Anirban Lahiri. For Arjuna Awards, Athletes Lalita Babar and OP Jaisha, shooters PN Prakash and Apurvi Chandela, and archer Laxmirani Majhi have been nominated.
iii. The Khel Ratna award carries a cash prize of Rs 7.5 lakh along with a citation while the Arjuna Award will carries a cash prize of Rs 5 lakh and a citation.
15. Leicester City's Jamie Vardy named FWA Footballer of the Year 2016
i. Leicester City striker forward Jamie Vardy was named 2015-16 Footballer of the Year by the Football Writers Association (FWA).
ii. He will be honoured with the prestigious FWA accolade, which has been running since 1948, at a gala dinner in London on 12 May 2016.
iii. With this he joined the likes of Bobby Moore, George Best, Eric Cantona, Thierry Henry and Cristiano Ronaldo among its past winners. Vardy, who topped the vote among FWA members, scored 22 goals in 34 Premier League appearances this season.