1) Supreme Court sets up 'Social Justice Bench' to deal with social issues: The Supreme Court on 3 December 2014 set up a special 'Social Justice Bench' to exclusively hear cases concerning social issues particularly those related to women, children and underprivileged saying that specialized approach is needed for dealing with these matters. Emphasizing that judiciary needs to be proactive to ensure early disposal of such cases and to bring fruits of the rights provided under the Constitution to people, the apex court set up the bench which will assemble every Friday at 2pm from December 12.
2) India's rating on global corruption index improves: India has marginally improved its ranking on the global Corruption Perception Index this year, on the back of prosecuations of high-level officials and hope that the new leadership will reduce corruption, Transparency International said. India’s two-point improvement (on a total possible score of 100) did not count as a “significant change” unlike that in countries like Egypt, Jordan and Afghanistan. With a score of 36, India now ranks 85 among 178 countries, with countries like Sri Lanka, Thailand and Burkina Faso for company. Denmark ranks first, as it did in 2013, while Somalia and North Korea share the bottom spot. India is ranked better than all its South Asian neighbours except Bhutan.
3) SC rejected Kerala plea to review Mullaperiyar verdict: In a major setback to Kerala, the Supreme Court has reaffirmed the May 7, 2014 verdict allowing Tamil Nadu to raise the water level in the Mullaperiyar dam from 136 ft to 142 ft. The court had in May quashed a law enacted by the State to prevent Tamil Nadu from raising the water level.
4) Union Minister Niranjan Jyoti expressed regret over controversial remarks: Minister of state for food processing industries Niranjan Jyoti on 3 Dec 2014 expressed regret in Rajya Sabha and apologised for her controversial remarks. Parliament witnessed uproar over alleged controversial remarks made by her, with opposition forcing brief adjournments of both the Houses. The opposition parties raised the issue and demanded the sacking of Niranjan Jyoti. Union Minister Sadhvi Niranjan Jyoti had created controversy on Monday by allegedly making communal remarks and using an expletive in an election rally in Delhi.
5) RBI doubled Pre-Paid Card limit to Rs. 1 Lakh: In a bid to boost the growth of the industry, the Reserve Bank of India (RBI) has relaxed the norms for prepaid instruments (PPIs). A few days after issuing the final guidelines for niche banks, RBI has now allowed PPIs to issue cards with balance of up to Rs 1 lakh. Earlier, the limit was Rs 50,000.
6) Indian systems for world’s largest telescope: Union Science and Technology Minister Harsh Vardhan on Tuesday signed a multilateral agreement admitting India’s participation in the development of the Thirty-Metre Telescope (TMT) in Hawaii.
7) Birth anniversary of Rajendra Prasad celebrated: Prime Minister Narendra Modi on 3 December 2014 paid his tributes to Dr Rajendra Prasad, the first President of the Republic of India, on his 130th birth anniversary. "Tributes to Dr. Rajendra Prasad on his birth anniversary. We remember his monumental contribution in the making of our Nation," tweeted PM Modi. "Rajen Babu remained devoted to serving the poorest of the poor. His service and impeccable values remain an inspiration for generations," he added.
8) International Day of People with Disability observed: International Day of People with Disability was observed across the world on 3 December 2014. This is the 22nd anniversary of International Day of People with Disability. The theme of the year is "Sustainable development: The promise of technology". This day is observed annually to focus on the issues that affect people with disabilities worldwide.
9) Indian umpire S Ravi included in 25-member list for ICC World Cup: Indian umpire S Ravi was on Wednesday named in a 25-member list of match officials for next year's ICC ODI World Cup in Australia and New Zealand. "The team includes five officials from the Emirates Elite Panel of ICC Match Referees, 12 umpires from the Emirates Elite Panel of ICC Umpires and eight umpires from the Emirates International Panel of ICC Umpires," the ICC said in a statement. The match referees are David Boon, Chris Broad, Jeff Crowe, Ranjan Madugalle and Roshan Mahanama. The elite panel umpires in the list are Aleem Dar, Billy Bowden, Bruce Oxenford, Ian Gould, Kumar Dharmasena, Marais Erasmus, Nigel Llong, Paul Reiffel, Richard Illingworth, Richard Kettleborough, Rod Tucker and Steve Davis.