1) Govt Hiked Subsidised LPG Cylinder Quota to 12 per Year & Aadhaar Link Put on Hold : Bowing to party pressure, the government on Thursday raised the quota of subsidised LPG to 12 cylinders per household in a year from nine at present and also put on hold paying users the subsidy into bank accounts using Aadhaar platform. Announcing the decision taken by the Cabinet Committee on Political Affairs, Oil Minister M Veerappa Moily said raising the LPG quota will cost Rs 5,000 crore in additional subsidy annually. Moily also said the direct benefit transfer for LPG (DBTL) scheme, where consumers in as many as get 289 districts in 18 states got the subsidy amount in their bank accounts so that they could buy cooking gas at market rate, has been put on hold.
2) Nation paid homage to Mahatma Gandhi on his 66th death anniversary: The nation on Thursday paid homage to Father of the Nation, Mahatma Gandhi, on his 66th death anniversary. Prominent leaders from various political parties and other dignitaries paid floral tributes at his Samadhi at Rajghat in the national capital. A series of functions were organized throughout the country to mark the occasion. India observes Gandhi's death anniversary as Martyrs' Day in the memory of its freedom fighters.
3) New PAN allotment norms put on hold; old procedure to continue: New norms for issuing of PAN (Permanent Account Number) cards have been put on hold by the Finance Ministry. They would have come into force from February 3 and required verification of original documents of applicants. Currently, a PAN applicant has to just submit photo copies of documents required. The originals are not checked. The statement, however, did not give reasons for keeping the proposed norms on hold.
4) Fixed 2-year tenure for IAS, IPS, IFoS officers: Officers of the three premier services - IAS, IPS and IFoS - will now spend a minimum of two years at each posting and any exception in the form of transfers or new appointments will only be done upon the recommendation of a civil services board, according to new rules aimed at checking political interference.
5) Google to sell Motorola phone business to Lenovo for $2.9 billion: Google is selling Motorola's smartphone business to Lenovo for $2.9 billion, a price that makes Google's biggest acquisition look like its most expensive mistake. The deal announced on Wednesday will rid Google Inc. of a financial headache that has plagued the internet company since buying Motorola Mobility for $12.4 billion in 2012. Motorola has lost nearly $2 billion since Google took over, while trimming its workforce from 20,000 to 3,800.
6) Andhra Pradesh Legislature rejected Telangana Bill: Both Houses of the Andhra Pradesh Legislature rejected the AP Reorganisation Bill, 2013 by a controversial voice vote on Thursday. All eyes will now be on the President and how the Union Government goes about getting Parliamentary consent.
7) India’s first monorail to run from Sunday: Come Sunday and India’s first monorail will be thrown open to the public, eight years after it was first proposed. With the Maharashtra government now keen on unveiling key projects before the upcoming Lok Sabha elections, the monorail will be inaugurated by Chief Minister Prithviraj Chavan on Saturday. With this, India will join countries like the U.S., Germany, China, Japan, Australia and Malaysia that run monorails.
8) Arvind Kejriwal-led AAP decides to contest over 350 Lok Sabha seats: The Aam Aadmi Party announced it would contest more than 350 Lok Sabha seats and vowed to take on tainted candidates and political leaders.
9) Kiwi Kathy Cross is first woman in ICC umpire's panel: New Zealand's Kathy Cross on Thursday became the first woman to be inducted in an ICC umpires' panel when she was named as an Associate and Affiliate International official following the annual review and selection process.
10) Anand Kumar, the founder of Super30 got Ramanujan Mathematics award: Anand Kumar, a mathematician and founder of Super30 classes was conferred with the 2014 Ramanujan Mathematics Award in Rajkot on 27 January 2014.