- U.S. Secretary of State John Kerry arrived in Sri Lanka today to offer support for newly elected President Maithripala Sirisena after years of tensions with the former government of President Mahinda Rajapaksa over human rights.
- It is the first time in a decade that a U.S. secretary of state has visited Sri Lanka.
- Union Minister Jitendra Singh on Saturday condemned the waving of Pakistani flags at Hardline Hurriyat leader Syed Ali Shah Geelani’s rally and said he was confident that the Mufti Mohammad Sayeed government would rise to the occasion and take steps to ensure such incidents do not recur.
- 94th birth anniversary of Indian filmmaker Satyajit Ray is being observed today.
- The Centre will invest a whopping 20 thousand crore rupees in the road sector for the North East this year.
- Minister for Road Transport, Highways and Shipping Nitin Gadkari said that the government is committed to develop the infra sector of the region.
- He said, his ministry has set a target of constructing 30 kilometer roads every day across the country within 2 years from 12 kilometers at present.
- The government has removed a duty free import scheme for raw sugar, a move aimed at curbing supplies from overseas.
- “Import of raw sugar under Duty Free Import Authorisation (DFIA) scheme is withdrawn with immediate effect,” Directorate General of Foreign Trade said in a notification.
- The scheme has been withdrawn also to prevent leakages in domestic markets.
- Note : Under the scheme, refiners were allowed to import raw sugar, which had to be processed and then exported.
- New Delhi's Indira Gandhi International Airport (IGIA) has been adjudged the world’s best airport for the year 2014, under the category of handling 25 to 40 million passengers per annum.
- Airports Council International (ACI) presented the Airport Service Quality (ASQ) award to IGIA at a ceremony of the ACI Asia-Pacific/World Annual General Assembly in Jordan.
- The Delhi airport scored 4.90 on a scale of 5 points measured by 300 members of the ACI ASQ benchmarking programme.
- Note : IGIA bettered its ranking from second position for the years 2011, 2012 and 2013 to emerge on top in 2014.
- In Andhra Pradesh and Telangana States, a new five-lakh rupees Accident Insurance Scheme for transport drivers has been introduced.
- The scheme came into force yesterday coinciding with the May Day.
- About 11 lakh transport drivers and journalists in the two Telugu speaking states will be benefited under the programme.
- About 16 thousand Home Guards in Telangana will also be benefited by the scheme.
- Note : The two states will enter into a Memorandum of Understanding with an insurer to bear the additional amount of three lakh rupees insurance cover, over and above the two lakh rupees cover that the Central Government provide through the Pradhan Mantri Suraksha Bima Yojana.
- Chief Minister of Andhra Pradesh : Chandra Babu Naidu
- Chief Minister of Telangana : Chandra Sekhar Rao
- Senior IPS officer Surender Singh has been appointed as the new chief of central paramilitary force CISF.
- Singh, a 1980-batch police officer of West Bengal cadre, is at present serving as a Special Director in the Intelligence Bureau (IB) and will take over the new charge as incumbent Director General Arvind Ranjan.
Awards & Honors
- The Order Of The Rising Sun, Gold and Silver Star, Japan's highest civillian award was conferred on eminent scientist CNR Rao for his outstanding contributions to Science and Indo-Japan Science cooperation.
- The emperor of Japan conferred the award upon the Bharat Ratna awardee.
- Mr Rao has received the highest civilian award from several nations and is an elected member of almost all scientific academies across the globe.
- He had also worked as the Chief Science Advisor to Prime Ministers of India.
- The renowned scientist, has published more than 1600 research papers and authored about 50 books.
- Dr Prannoy Roy, Executive Co-Chairman of NDTV Group, has been awarded the 2015 RedInk Award for Lifetime Achievement for Excellence in Journalism for his consistent and pioneering contribution to news television in India.
- PresidentMukherjee will present 62nd National Film Awards including Dada Saheb Phalke Award tomorrow.
- Senior DRDO scientist G Satheesh Reddy, who played a critical role in the Agni 5 programme, has been conferred the prestigious Fellowship of the Royal Institute of Navigation, a first for an Indian.
- Reddy, Director, Research Centre Imarat of DRDO, has been recognised for his work in the field of inertial and satellite-based navigation and avionics technologies.
- Spain’s Prime Minister Mariano Rajoy awarded the Gold Medal for Merit to tennis star Rafael Nadal.
- Nadal was one of the winners of this award, decided last June 13, but he could not pick it up at the ceremony in November because he was still recovering from his recent appendectomy operation.
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