1) Sachin Tendulkar named ambassador for 2015 ICC World Cup: Indian cricket icon Sachin Tendulkar, who is the all-time leading run-getter in World Cup history, was named the event's ambassador for the second successive edition. "The International Cricket Council today announced Sachin Tendulkar as the World Cup 2015 Ambassador. It will be the second successive time that the India maestro will be the Ambassador of ICC's pinnacle tournament, after he fulfilled the role in the previous event in 2011," the ICC said in a statement in Dubai on 22 December 2014. In his role as ambassador, Tendulkar will promote and support a variety of ICC initiatives to enhance the profile of the tournament, which is the third biggest sporting event in the world and will take place in Australia and New Zealand from 14th February to 29th March.
2) Gujarat to host Pravasi Bharatiya Divas 2015: The 13th edition of the Pravasi Bharatiya Divas (PBD), an event which celebrates the achievements of Indians living abroad, will be held in Gujarat from January 7-9. Briefing the media about the upcoming event on 22 December 2014, External Affairs Minister Sushma Swaraj said that Gujarat has been chosen as the partner State as 2015 happens to be the 100th year of Mahatma Gandhi’s return to India from South Africa. To reflect this, the event will showcase his work and achievements. The event will be inaugurated by Prime Minister Narendra Modi on January 8, and President Pranab Mukherjee will honour prominent Pravasis on January 9.
3) Beji Caid Essebsi elected as the President of Tunisia: Veteran politician Beji Caid Essebsi declared victory in Sunday's presidential run-off vote, seen as the last step in Tunisia's shift to full democracy four years after an uprising ousted autocrat Zine El-Abidine Ben Ali. The country took about 4 years to make the free and fair democratic transition after the chaotic uprising of 2011 which toppled dictator Zine El Abidine Ben Ali. The 88-year old leader heads the secular Nidaa Tounes (Call for Tunisia) party. He clinched the election by defeating incumbent Prime Minister Moncef Marzouki in the Presidential run-off vote.
4) India to reach replacement levels of fertility by 2020: Fertility is falling faster than expected in India, and the country is on track to reach replacement levels of fertility as soon as 2020, new official data shows. The 2013 data for the Sample Registration Survey (SRS), conducted by the Registrar General of India, the country’s official source of birth and death data, was released on 22 December 2014. The SRS shows that the Total Fertility Rate – the average number of children that will be born to a woman during her lifetime – in eight States has fallen below two children per woman, new official data shows.
5) Suresh Prabhu-led panel submitted advisory Group reports to Piyush Goyal: Union Railway Minister Suresh Prabhu on 22 December 2014 submitted the reports of the Advisory Group for Integrated Development of Power, Coal, and Renewable Energy to Minister of State (Independent Charge) for Power, Coal, and Renewable Energy Piyush Goyal. The report covers the contemporary issues and challenges in respect of the the latter's ministries. In the report, suggestions have been made for the enhancement of coal production in the short, medium and long terms.
6) Naval light combat aircraft successfully tested: The first naval prototype of the Light Combat Aircraft (LCA), designed to operate from the decks of aircraft carriers, was successfully tested at a facility in Goa, the defence ministry said. The LCA (Navy) Prototype 1 - or NP1 - the first indigenously designed and developed fourth-plus generation combat aircraft, was tested at the Ski-Jump facility of the Shore Based Test Facility at INS Hansa in Goa on 20 Dec 2014.
7) Arjun Atwal won inaugural Dubai Open Golf: Veteran Indian golfer Arjun Atwal on 21 December 2014 ended a frustrating four-year title drought by winning the inaugural Dubai Open by one stroke after South Korean teenager Wang Jeung-hun bogeyed the final hole at the par-72 Els Club Dubai.
8) National Mathematics Day celebrated: India on 22 December 2014 celebrated National Mathematics Day. The day is observed to commemorate the birth anniversary of great Indian Mathematician Srinivasa Ramanujan. The declaration to observe 22 December as National Mathematics Day was made by former Prime Minister Dr. Manmohan Singh on 26 February 2012 at Madras University on the occasion of 125th birth anniversary of Ramanujan.
9) India's Shiva Keshavan wins silver at Asian Luge Championship: India’s Shiva Keshavan added another international medal to his kitty by winning a silver at the 17th Asian Luge Championships in Nagano, Japan. Keshavan, who has participated in five Winter Olympics, clocked 49.934 seconds to cover the 1326 metre long ice track in the men’s luge competition at the Spiral Olympic Sliding Centre in Nagano. Hidenari Kanayama of Japan won gold in 49.791 seconds while Kim of Korea bagged the bronze with a timing of 50.178.
10) Klaus Iohannis sworn in as Romania’s new president: Liberal Klaus Iohannis, former mayor of Sibiu, has been sworn in as Romania's new president in an elaborate ceremony on 21 December 2014. The new head of state pledged to use his time in office to fight corruption and strengthen the country's institutions.