Current Affairs India - 28 April 2014

1. The 28-member European Union has temporarily banned the import of Alphonso mangoes, the king of fruits, and four vegetables (eggplant, the taro plant, bitter gourd and snake gourd) from India from 1st May onwards which brought protests from the Indian community, lawmakers and traders. The recent decision by the grouping-s Standing Committee on Plant Health came after 207 consignments of fruits and vegetables from India imported into the EU in 2013 were found to be contaminated by pests such as fruit flies and other quarantine pests.

The UK itself imports nearly 16 million mangoes from India and the market for the fruit is worth nearly 6 million pounds a year. This ban will have significant impact on farmers and exporters as they claimed that they will lose hundreds of thousands of pounds due to the ban. A revision of the ban will take place before December 31, 2015.

2. Infosys Executive Chairman NR Narayana Murthy was honored with with the 2014 -Canada India Foundation Chanchalani Global Indian Award- in Toronto yesterday for his remarkable vision and leadership in the IT sector. The award, which carries a trophy and a cash prize worth $50,000, was presented to Murthy by Canadian Finance Minister Joe Oliver at the Canada India Foundation (CIF) annual award gala dinner.

3. Mahindra Group Chairman Anand Mahindra has been appointed on the Board of US-India Business Council (USIBC). As a member of the board, Mahindra will help promote the policy advocacy priorities of USIBC and advice members and senior USIBC staff on a wide range of topics.

The appointment was announced following the USIBC-s annual spring meeting. He joins a prestigious list of Chief Executive Officers and executives such as Ellen Lord, President & CEO, Textron Systems and Banmali Agrawala, President & CEO, South Asia, General Electric. Formed in 1975 at the request of the U.S. and Indian governments, USIBC is a premier business advocacy organisation advancing commercial ties between the two countries.

4. Six environmental advocates from India, Peru, Russia and three other countries have won this year-s Goldman Prize, which is awarded for grass-roots activism. India-s Ramesh Agrawal received the prize for helping villagers fight coal mining in Chhattisgarh and succeeded in shutting down one of the largest planned coal mines in the area. He will receive USD 175,000 as cash prize.

5. Famous Hollywood actor John Travolta was awarded with the Most Popular All Time International Star in India at the International Indian Film Academy (IIFA) awards held in Tampa Bay, Florida last week. He acted in several blockbusters films such as Saturday Night Fever, Pulp Fiction, Grease, Swordfish, Face Off, Broken Arrow and Ladder49. IIFA awards were first held in London in 2000. The awards are presented annually by the International Indian Film Academy to both artistic and technical excellence of professionals in Bollywood.

Farhan Akhtar-s 'Bhaag Milkha Bhaag', a biopic on legendary athlete Milkha Singh, won five major awards including best actor, best director for Rakeysh Omprakash Mehra and best picture at the 15th International Indian Film Academy (IIFA) awards.

6. Indian Golfer Anirban Lahiri won his fourth Asian Tour title and the first outside India at the CIMB Indonesian Masters golf on 27th April. He fought back from a double bogey on 13th as he leapfrogged from second place to go past clubhouse leader Baek Seuk-Hyun of Korea (65), who finished at 16-under.

He is currently the top Indian in the world rankings and will also move to the top of the Asian Tour Order of Merit.