1) National Girl Child Day observed: National Girl Child Day was observed across the nation on 24 Jan 2014. This day is observed every year to raise awareness and consciousness towards the girl child. Union Government has been observing January 24 as National Girl Child Day from 2008. National Girl Child Day commemorates the day when Indira Gandhi was sworn in as the first woman prime minister of the country on January 24, 1966. The Ministry of Women and Child Development comes up with various events that focus towards reducing child sex ratio in the country, and to ensure that every girl child is given an equal opportunity.
2) India, China launched Year of Friendly Exchanges: India and China on Friday launched the Year of Friendly Exchanges at a colourful Republic Day reception in New Delhi attended by Vice President Li Yuanchao, who said Beijing is committed to taking the strategic partnership to new heights.
3) SBI launched Youtube channel; Twitter handle next: Nation's largest lender State Bank of India on Friday strengthened its social media presence with the launch of its channel on popular video sharing website Youtube and said it will also be launching its handle on the micro-blogging site Twitter soon.
4) National Bravery Awards Presented: Lauding young bravehearts as the ‘nation’s pride’ and their courageous acts as an ‘inspiration’ to all, Prime Minister Manmohan Singh on Friday presented the National Bravery Awards to 25 children ahead of Republic Day.
5) Rajasthan, Tripura, Karnataka, Delhi bag EC award for best electoral practices: The four states of Rajasthan, Tripura, Karnataka and Delhi have been selected by the Election Commission for an award of excellence for having the best electoral practices and introducing innovative measures which saw them achieve high turnouts in Assembly polls last year.
6) French First Lady to visit India: French First Lady Valerie Trierweiler will make her first public appearance since it emerged President Francois Hollande was cheating on her with an actress, with a trip to India next week for charity work. She will visit Mumbai for two days from Monday on a trip organised by French relief organisation Action Against Hunger (ACF) which had been planned long in advance.
7) Woman officer gets CRPF honour: Savita Kumari of the Central Reserve Police Force was presented a `Sword of Honour` at a passing out parade after being selected the best all-round trainee.
8) 16 nations to participate in Indian Navy's MILAN 2014: A total of 16 navies from the Indian Ocean Region are participating in 'MILAN 2014', the biennial international naval exercise conducted by the Indian Navy in Andaman and Nicobar Islands between February 5 and 9. Australia, Bangladesh, Cambodia, Indonesia, Kenya, Malaysia, Maldives, Mauritius, Myanmar, New Zealand, Philippines, Singapore, Sri Lanka, Tanzania and Thailand have confirmed their participation, a Navy spokesman said.
9) Congress released poll ad, BJP says it has 'copied' Narendra Modi: Congress on Friday released its first advertisement for the Lok Sabha polls, but main Opposition BJP targeted it saying the party has "copied" Narendra Modi's ad blitz at a BJP convention in 2011. Rahul Gandhi is at the centrestage of the campaign 'Mein Nahi, Hum' (Not I, we) which appeared in newspapers on Friday. Dismissing BJP's charges of plagiarism, Congress spokesperson Shobha Oza insisted that no one has sole proprietary right on words and ideas.
10) Catherine Samba-Panza becomes the first woman president of war-torn Central African Republic. She is the third interim president this country has seen this month after Alexandre-Ferdinand Nguendet (which she replaces) and Michel Djotodia.
11) Kiran Mazumdar Shaw won 2014 Othmer Gold Medal: Kiran Mazumdar-Shaw of the country’s largest biotech research firm, Biocon Ltd, has been named winner of the 2014 Othmer Gold Medal, a top award of the US-based Chemical Heritage Foundation. Shaw is also known as India’s biotech queen for her pioneering work in biotech research. She will be conferred the prestigious award in March at Philadelphia, where the Foundation is based, a Biocon spokesperson told.
12) DMK strips Alagiri of all party posts: Dravida Munnettra Kazhagam (DMK) has temporarily suspended its south zone organising secretary, MK Alagiri, who is also a son of party chief M Karunanidhi, from all party posts. A statement from the party called it a “disciplinary action” against the 62-year-old former Union minister for indulging in “unnecessary arguments” and working against party interests.
13) Tirath launched Multi-Sectoral Nutrition Programme on National Girl Child Day: Women and Child Development Minister Krishna Tirath launched a Multi Sectoral Nutrition Programme (MSNP) and National Resource Platform (NRP) on the occasion of National Girl Child Day. .
14) India Posts to start rolling out ATMs from February: In anticipation of getting a banking licence from the Reserve Bank of India, the Department of Posts will roll out its own ATMs, with the first of them set to be functional on February 5 across three cities. The currency dispensers are being launched for the Department’s more than 26 crore savings bank account holders.
15) Rafael Nadal beats Roger Federer to set up final with Stanislas Wawrinka: World No 1 Rafael Nadal proves too strong for his great rival Roger Federer, finishing a comfortable 7-6 (7/4), 6-3, 6-3 winner. Nadal will now play final with with Stanislas Wawrinka.
16) Errani-Vinci retain women's doubles title in Australian Open: Top seeds Sara Errani and Roberta Vinci of Italy produced a great escape on Friday as they beat Russia's Ekaterina Makarova and Elena Vesnina 6-4 3-6 7-5 to retain the Australian Open women's doubles title.
17) Sania in mixed doubles final of Australian Open: Sania Mirza and her Romanian team-mate Horia Tecau advanced into the mixed-doubles finals in the Australian Open tournament.