1) Earth Hour 2014 observed: Millions across the world turned off lights: People across the globe observed Earth Hour 2014 on Saturday after turning-off non-essential lights in their communities, households and businesses and joined millions others across the world. Earth Hour is organized by the World Wildlife Fund each year since 2007 and requests people to conserve energy and trim down its wastage. Since the first time the event has spread across 7,001 cities and towns in 152 countries. It was observed from 8:30 p.m. to 9:30 p.m. on Saturday.
2) Jaswant Singh expelled from BJP for six years: The BJP on Saturday announced the expulsion of senior leader Jaswant Singh and Subhash Mahariya for six years. The decision comes in the wake of Mr. Singh’s decision to contest as an Independent from Barmer and Mr. Mahariya’s announcement to do the same from Sikar in Rajasthan. This is the second time the party has taken such action Mr. Singh. He was earlier expelled in 2009 for praising Mohammad Ali Jinnah, Pakistan’s founding father.
3) Anurag Kumar is IISc. new director: The council of the Indian Institute of Science (IISc.) on Saturday selected, as its 20th director, Anurag Kumar, who is now the Chairman of the Electrical Sciences Division at the institute. IISc.’s present director, P. Balaram, retires on July 31 after an eight-year tenure.
4) Imran Masood arrested for hate speech: Congress Lok Sabha candidate Imran Masood was on Saturday arrested for his hate speech in which he allegedly threatened to “chop” Narendra Modi “into pieces”, remarks that had sparked an outrage.
5) Saudi King appointed half-brother Moqren as next heir to throne: Abdullah, the king of Saudi Arabia on 27 March 2014 appointed his half-brother Moqren (69) as the next heir to the throne. This step has paved a way for Moqren to become a future king of the world’s largest exporter of crude oil.
6) Heena Sidhu wins silver in ISSF World Cup: World number two air pistol shooter Heena Sidhu continued her impressive form as she clinched a silver medal at the ISSF World Cup in Fort Benning, USA, the feat taking her closer to the numero uno spot in her event. She now has the maximum medals in a World Cup by any Indian pistol shooter.
7) World Cup T20- South Africa enters semifinal: South Africa sailed into the World Twenty20 semifinals with a three-run victory over former champion England in their super-10 group-1 match in Chittagong on Saturday. England slumped out of contention for a place in the last four after falling short of a 197-run target in the face of some impressive bowling by Wayne Parnell (three for 31) and leg-spinner Imran Tahir (two for 27).
8) President re-promulgates SEBI Ordinance: President Pranab Mukherjee, on Saturday, cleared the re-promulgation of the SEBI (Securities and Exchange Board of India) Ordinance that had lapsed on January 15, since Parliament could not pass the Securities Laws (Amendment) Bill, 2013, in the winter session. The Ordinance empowers the SEBI Chairman to order searches and seizures and crack downs on Ponzi schemes. The Securities Laws (Amendment) Bill, 2013, seeks to empower SEBI to regulate all money pooling scheme worth Rs.100 crore or more, and also attach assets in cases of non-compliance.
9) Anand wins Candidates, sets up World Championship rematch with Carlsen: Five-times world champion Viswanathan Anand proved all his critics wrong and won the Candidates Chess tournament after settling for a draw with Sergey Karjakin of Russia in the 13th and penultimate round. The tournament victory gives Anand winner`s cheque of 135000 Euros (a little over Rs 1 crore) and the right to a match against Magnus Carlsen of Norway who dethroned the Indian champion at Chennai in November last. This rematch will take place sometime in the last quarter of this year.