1) Telangana bill passed in Lok Sabha: The contentious bill that will split Andhra Pradesh and allow the creation of Telangana, India’s 29th state, made it through the Lok Sabha Tuesday despite opposition, tumultuous scenes and a controversial “blackout” of the live TV broadcast of the proceedings. The house passed the Andhra Pradesh Re-organisation Bill, 2014, by voice vote even as those opposed to it demanded a division vote and termed the process a “sham” and a “black day for democracy”. Once approved by both houses of the Parliament, the bill will be sent to President for his assent.
2) Supreme Court commutes death penalty of Rajiv Gandhi's killers to life term: Supreme Court on Tuesday commuted the death penalty of Rajiv Gandhi's killers to life term, citing the 11-year delay in deciding their mercy pleas. With this, the three convicts on death row in the Rajiv Gandhi assassination case — Santhan, Murugan and Perarivalan — have been spared the gallows. A bench headed by Chief Justice P Sathasivam rejected the Centre's submission that there was no unreasonable delay in deciding their mercy plea and the condemned prisoners did not go through agonizing experience as they were enjoying life behind the bars. Rajiv Gandhi was killed in May 1991. His assassins were convicted by a TADA court in January 1998 and were awarded death sentence, which was confirmed by the apex court May 11, 1999.
3) National Tourism Award 2012-13 presented: Madhya Pradesh and Andhra Pradesh jointly bagged the National Tourism Award for Best State/UT in the 'Comprehensive Development of Tourism' category. Kerala and Gujarat secured the 2nd and 3rd prize respectively. Sikkim clinches the best state award for implementing Rural Tourism Project. MoS for HRD Shashi Tharoor presented the awards at a function held at Vigyan Bhavan in New Delhi on Tuesday.
4) Killa, a Marathi film bagged Crystal Bear award at 64th Berlin International Film Festival: Killa, a Marathi film on 17 February 2014 won the Crystal Bear (Glasernen Bar) for the best film award by the Children’s jury in Generation Kplus section at the 64th Berlin International Film Festival. The film has been directed by Avinash Arun.
5) China overtakes India as top gold consumer: China overtook India as the world’s largest consumer market for gold with a jump of 32 per cent last year, the World Gold Council said on Tuesday. Chinese consumers bought 1,066 tonnes of gold products in 2013, while their Indian counterparts bought 975 tonnes, up 13 per cent from 2012, the London-based council reported.
6) HAL to spearhead effort to set up aerospace university: Hindustan Aeronautics Ltd. has announced that it has set the ball rolling for the country’s first full-fledged aerospace university. HAL would spearhead the effort to meet the long-felt and future needs of the growing aeronautical sector, a company release said on Tuesday.
7) Eminent Carnatic vocalist R K Srikantan passed away: Eminent Carnatic vocalist R K Srikantan passed away in a private hospital in Seshadripuram on Monday night at the age of 94. Winner of the Padma Bhushan, Srikantan was on September 3, 2013, presented Chembai Swamy Puraskaram by K J Yesudas at his Seshadripuram home.
8) New Zealand won test series against India after second test ends in draw: New Zealand won the two match Test Series against India 1-0, with the Wellington Test ending in a draw. Resuming the final day today at the overnight score of 571 for 6, the hosts declared their second innings at 680 for 8, giving India an improbable 435 runs to chase in little over two sessions of play.