Current Affairs India - 23 March 2015

1. Martyr's Day was observed today (23rd March) across the country today to honour the sacrifice of Bhagat Singh, Rajguru and Sukhdev who were hanged to death on this very day in 1931. Prime Minister Narendra Modi visited Hussainiwala to pay his respects to freedom fighters Bhagat Singh, Rajguru and Sukhdev. They were cremated in Hussainiwala by the British after their hanging in Lahore on March 23, 1931.

2. The Union Cabinet, chaired by Prime Minister Narendra Modi, has approved the Pradhan Mantri Kaushal Vikas Yojana (PMKVY) to provide necessary skills training to youth across the country. The PMKVY Scheme will be implemented by the Union Ministry of Skill Development and Entrepreneurship through the National Skill Development Corporation (NSDC).

3. The Andhra Pradesh Government may announce the new capital city planned near Vijayawada-Guntur region as Amaravathi, based on the historical Buddhist site along Krishna river. The N Chandrababu Naidu Government has initiated the land pooling process for the new capital city which will be built in association with Singapore Government.

4. India has replaced US to become the third-largest steel producer in the world. India produced 14.56 million tonnes (MT) in first two months of the current year. Indian is now behind China and Japan in terms of steel production. Before that, India has been holding fourth place after USA for nearly five years.

5. Prime Minister Narendra Modi has been appointed as the new chancellor of Visva Bharati University of Shantiniketan for the next three years. He replaces former Prime Minister Manmohan Singh who stepped down recently. Visva-Bharati, set up by Rabindranath Tagore, was declared a central university and an institution of national importance by an Act of Parliament in 1951.

6. The government of India has appointed Bollywood megastar Amitabh Bachchan as the brand ambassador for its drive against hepatitis B. Amitabh Bachchan was a brand ambassador for the Polio Eradication Campaign since 2005 after the number of cases peaked in the nation in year 2002.

According to latest World Health Organisation (WHO) data, hepatitis B is responsible for 1.4 million deaths every year globally, as compared to 1.5 million deaths from AIDS and 1.2 million each from malaria and tuberculosis.

7. Environmental activist Rajendra Singh has been awarded with the prestigious Stockholm Water Prize this year for his innovative water restoration efforts and courage to empower communities in Indian villages. He will be presented with this award on 26th August 2015 by Sweden's King Carl XVI Gustaf. This award carries USD 150,000 cash prize and a specially designed sculpture.

8. Actor Shashi Kapoor has been awarded with this year's Dadasaheb Phalke Award just after his 77th birthday, India's highest honour in cinema. With this, he has become the third person in the Kapoor family to receive the Dadasaheb Phalke Award, after his father Prithviraj and elder brother Raj.

9. Suresh Krishna has been appointed Chairman of TV Sundram Iyengar & Sons Ltd, the holding company of the TVS group. He is the grandson of TV Sundaram Iyengar, the founder of the group and is the eldest member in his generation. The last chairman of TVS & Sons was R Ramachandran who passed away in December 2004.

10. Sania Mirza and her partner Martina Hingis won the the BNP Paribas Open Tennis trophy after defeating Ekaterina Makarova and Elena Vesnina by 6-3, 6-4 in the final match of the Women-s doubles title in Indian Wells, USA. Top seeds Sania and Hingis made a great start and achieved this win very easily.

With this win, Sania Mirza has been ranked at Number three position in the doubles Tennis ranking with 6885 points. She followed Italians Roberta Vinci and Sara Errani, who share the top spot with 7640 points each.