1. Union Minister of Consumer Affairs, Food and Public Distribution Ram Vilas Paswan launched the Surakshit Khadya Abhiyan, a countrywide campaign, to create mass awareness and capacity building for safe and hygienic food.
2. SC rejected curative petition of Mumbai serial bomb blasts convict Yakub Memon.
Curative Petition is last legal recourse for a convict seeking reconsideration of punishment which is usually decided by judges in chamber.
3. SC rejected Union Government’s review plea seeking OBC status for Jats.
4. Union Government extended Interest Subvention Scheme (ISS) to Public Sector Banks (PSBs), private sector commercial banks, rural regional banks (RRBs), cooperative banks and NABARD.
It was extended to ensure availability of crop loans of up to 3 lakh rupees to farmers at 7 percent per annum.
5. After failing to get Centre’s approval, the Madhya Pradesh Assembly on Wednesday passed a bill to amend 15 labour laws.
With this, Madhya Pradesh has become the second state to pass its own labour law amendments in the Assembly after Rajasthan under the National Democratic Alliance (NDA) government.
Companies in the state employing up to 300 people (up from 100 in the present provision) will be allowed to retrench workers or shut the establishment without government approval.
Workers in Madhya Pradesh will get the benefit of earned leave after 6 months of service and in the same calendar year.
This will apply to a factory with at least 10 workers if it has no power connection or at least 20 with one. At present, employees who have worked for at least 8 months are entitled to annual leave, being able to avail of these in the next calendar year.
The process of registration or grant of licences for establishments will also be expedited under the Contract Labour Act, Inter State Migrant Workers Act, Motor Transport Workers Act and Building & Other Construction Workers Act.
Builders in the state will have to pay a considerably reduced cess for their construction work.
1. The New Development Bank (NDB) created by Brazil, Russia, India, China and South Africa (BRICS) nations formally started its operations from its headquarters in Shanghai, China.
2. The Japanese Cabinet approved the Defense White Paper for the year 2015. In the White Paper 2015, the cabinet described the security situation surrounding Japan as increasingly tough.
The defense white paper for 2015 examines a range of global threats.
1. BCCI announced that finals of the 2016 World Twenty20 cricket tournament will be held at iconic Eden Gardens ground in Kolkata. The World Twenty20 will be hosted by India from the 11 March to 3 April 2016.
Awards & Recognition:
1. Noted Canadian author Naomi Klein has won the 36th edition of American Book Award 2015.
She has won this award for her environmental work This Changes Everything: Capitalism vs. the Climate published in 2014.
1. India and Singapore signed Technical Agreement (TA) on sharing white-shipping information to enhance maritime cooperation between the two navies.
1. R K Pachauri, accused of sexual harassment by an employee working under him in Teri, has taken back charge as director-general of the environmental NGO, even as the police investigation in the matter continue and cases are being tried in the court.
2. Former McKinsey director Ananth Narayanan was appointed as the Chief Executive Officer (CEO) of the Flipkart-owned fashion store Myntra.
3. Hisao Tanaka resigned as Chief Executive Officer (CEO) and President of Toshiba. He will be succeeded by Masashi Muromachi, who is presently the Chairman of Toshiba.
4. White House economic adviser Maurice Obstfeld was appointed as Chief Economist of the International Monetary Fund (IMF).
Mergers & Acquisition:
1. Passengers used to stale fare on Indian trains may finally get some relief as some of the top fast-food chains in the country are boarding the band wagon. After pizza maker Domino’s, American chicken restaurant chain Kentucky Fried Chicken (KFC), has tied up with the Indian Railway Catering and Tourism Corporation (IRCTC) to serve consumers on trains.
Science & Technology:
1. A new species of cyprinid freshwater fish named Puntius Dolichopterus has been discovered in Kerala’s Kayamkulam city.
It was discovered by Mathews Plamoottil, head of the department of zoology in Baby John Memorial Government College of Kollam district.
2. ISRO has successfully test-fired Geosynchronous Satellite Launch Vehicle (GSLV) Mark III project’s high-thrust cryogenic rocket engine.
It is India’s first indigenously designed and developed high-thrust cryogenic rocket engine capable of generating a nominal thrust of 19 tones.
1. Tom Moore, the cartoonist who brought to life the escapades of Riverdale residents in Archie comics has passed away. He was 86.
2. Famous Hollywood actor Olaf Pooley passed away due to congestive heart failure. He was 101.