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Current Affairs: 26th February 2015

Category : All, Current Affairs · by Feb 27th, 2015

1- China’s President Xi Jinping unveils new ‘four comprehensives’ political theory

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China’s President Xi Jinping

China’s President Xi Jinping has unveiled a new political theory, grouped into four slogans also known as the four comprehensives. His new political theory was declared ahead of the upcoming meeting of the Committee of the People’s Political Consultative Conference, which is going to discuss national policies. Xi Jinping’s new political theory is summed up into following four Comprehensives: Comprehensively build a moderately prosperous society. Comprehensively deepen reform. Comprehensively govern the nation according to law. Comprehensively strictly govern the Party. In the above 4 comprehensives, the first three are familiar to slogans of previous Chinese leaders, but the fourth comprehensive is a specific reference to the current anti-corruption campaign being prosecuted by Xi Jinping. Previously also, similar slogans were put forward by his predecessors, including Hu Jintao’s Three Supremes and Jiang Zemin’s Three Represents. Since 1950s several communist leaders had given number of similar kind of slogans. The Cultural Revolution begun by Mao Zedong also included phrases such as smash the four olds.

 2- Six Indian women among Forbes’ 50 ‘Power Businesswomen’ 2015

Six Indian women entrepreneurs and businesswomen have been named by Forbes magazine as among the 50 ‘Power Businesswomen’ from Asia. Indians included in the list are Arundhati Bhattacharya- Chairperson of State Bank of India (SBI).  Forbes list referred her as the first lady of Indian banking and as chair of the Indian behemoth with 225 million customers. Chanda Kochchar- MD & CEO of ICICI Bank. Forbes list referred her as India’s second-most-powerful banker after Bhattacharya. Akhila Srinivasan-  MD of Shriram Capital. Kiran Mazumdar Shaw- Chairman & MD of Biocon. Shikha Sharma- CEO of Axis Bank. Usha Sangwan- MD of Life Insurance Corporation of India (LIC).

About Forbes 50 Power Businesswomen list

The Asia’s 50 Power Businesswomen list showcases accomplishments of the region’s female entrepreneurs and executives for particular year. The list includes women CEOs and founders, who are active in the upper echelons of the business world in Asia. These women wield significant business power and have access to robust financial resources.

3- World’s first 3D-printed jet engine developed in Australia

Researchers from Australia’s Monash University have created world’s first 3 Dimensional (3D) printed jet engine. The first of kind 3D printed engine was developed by team of researchers from Monash Centre for Additive Manufacturing in partnership with spin-out company Amaero Engineering. Process of Production The jet engine was created using innovative additive manufacturing technique. Firstly, the scanned computer models of engines were created by the researchers. Then the 3D printing machine incorporated with high-powered laser fused the nickel, titanium or aluminium into the shape of engine parts.

Significance of this development

It opens the door for engineers to make and test parts of jet engines in days instead of months. It will also help engineers to manufacture cheaper, lighter and more fuel-efficient jet engines.

About 3D printing technology

3D printing is a process of making three dimensional solid objects from a digital file with extreme precision. This technology is also termed additive manufacturing as the 3D printed object is created us additive processes. In an additive process an object is created by laying down successive layers of manufacturing material on each other until the entire object is created. This technology has limitless possibilities and can create almost anything with just raw material and a computer generated model.

4- Highlights from Railway Budget 2015-16

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Union Railway Minister Suresh Prabhu

Union Railway Minister Suresh Prabhu on 26 February 2015 presented the Railway Budget 2015-16 in the Parliament. Below are the highlights of this Budget: Railway Fares No new hike in passenger fares While, the Freight fares have been raised incase of urea by 10%, iron and steel by 0.8%, kerosene and cooking gas by 0.8%, coal by 6.3% and cement by 2.7%. Railway Finances Plan Budget is gone up by 52 percent Rs. 100011 crore for financial year 2015-16 compared to Rs. 65789 crore in FY 2014-15. For next five year envisaged investment for railways is Rs. 8.5 lakh crore rupees. Funds for railways will be raised from pension, institutional and multilateral agencies. In order to improve passenger amenities, MPs requested to use part of their MPLAD funds. Railways to set up an infrastructure fund and holding company to raise long-term debt. Passengers Amenities 120 days in advance ticket booking facility for passengers instead of earlier 60 days. Railways is aiming to move towards paperless ticketing. Operation 5 minutes- Passengers can buy railway tickets within five minutes unde. SMS updates to inform passengers about any change in schedule of trains. Open wi-fi facility at 400 railway stations. Mobile charging units will be installed. For women safety CCTVs to be installed in selected trains and suburban trains. Food ordering facility food while booking tickets through IRCTC website. Water-vending machines to be set up at stations. 138 will be a nationwide 24×7 helpline number for railway-related queries. While, 182 will be a toll-free number for security-related issues. On-board entertainment in Shatabdi Express. Infrastructure Track capacity will be increased by 10% to 1.38 lakh km. Speed of passenger trains on 9 corridors will increased to 160-200 km/h from 110-130 km/h. Wagon-making scheme will be reviewed in order ease private investment By inviting open bids, station redevelopment policy will be revamped. 10 satellite railway terminals will be developed in major cities in 2015-15. PPP cell of Indian Railways will be revamped. Feasibility report of high-speed train between Mumbai and Ahmedabad expected by mid-2015. Connectivity to North-East India will be improved. In J&K rail connectivity will be on focus. Tourism Railways will promote Gandhi circuit in order to mark centenary year of Mahatma Gandhi’s return from South Africa. Special travel scheme Kisan Yatra for farmers for farming and marketing technique centres. Under Incredible India, Incredible Rail will be launched.

5- Russia and Cyprus sign military deal on port access in Mediterranean Sea

Cyprus has signed an agreement with Russia to give Russian navy ships access to Cypriot ports in the Mediterranean Sea. The agreement in this regard was signed by Russian President Vladimir Putin and his Cyprus counterpart President Nicos Anastasiades in Moscow. Military deal between both nations comes at the time when the tensions between Russia and Western countries over the Ukrainian conflict have worsened.

Key facts about agreement

Russia will use these ports in Cyprus to dock its naval ships for the purpose of counter-terrorism and anti-piracy operations. Russia is also looking to use an air base in Cyprus for humanitarian relief missions in this region. It is also considered that by building up base in Cyprus, will replace its search for base in Mediterranean since it has lost its previous base in on Syria in the Syrian crisis.

6- Apple Inc fined $553 million for patent infringement

khichdi, blog,current affairs, general,knowledge, ias, ips, civil, services, CSAT,pre, ies, general studies, GS, mains, competitive, entrance, bank, PO, IBPS, apple, us, piracyUS Tech giant Apple Inc has been fined $553 million for three patent infringements owned by patent licensing firm Smartflash LLC. This verdict was given by federal Jury in US District Court for the Eastern District of Texas. The Jury in its verdict found out that Apple Inc’s iTunes software has infringed three patents owned by Smartflash LLC. The federal jury in its verdict also held that Apple had not only used Smartflash’s patents without permission, but also used them willfully. Background In May 2013, Smartflash LLC had sued Apple Inc, alleging that iTunes software has violated its 3 patents related to accessing and storing downloaded songs, videos and games. In this regard, Smartflash LLC had asked $852 million in damages from Apple.

7- Jamaica passes law to decriminalises marijuana for personal use

Jamaica’s Parliament on 25 February 2015 has passed a law to decriminalise the possession of small amounts of marijuana up to 57 grams for personal use. The newly passed law allows licensing authority to oversee the medical and scientific uses of the Marijuana plant in the country. Jamaica’s decision to legalise marijuana comes in line with global trend which include several Latin American countries and US states that have decriminalised marijuana possession. Marijuana is widely grown in Jamaica and has cultural roots there. It is also the biggest exporter of marijuana to the United States among Caribbean countries.

Global trend of decriminalisation of marijuana

In 2014, Uruguay was the first country in the world to approve the growth, sale and distribution of marijuana. In United States, states like Alaska, Colorado, and Washington have legalises the sale and possession of marijuana for both medical and non-medical use. Mexico, Colombia and Argentina also have decriminalised the possession of small amounts of marijuana. About Marijuana Marijuana is a greenish-gray mixture of the dried, shredded leaves, stems, seeds and flowers of Cannabis sativa – the hemp plant. Most people smoke marijuana, though it can also be used in other forms such as edibles, powders and oils. Medicinal values of marijuana is used as a drug for controlling pain for medical issues, like cancer, nervous system diseases, glaucoma, migraines, etc. It also can be used to treat nausea and improve appetites for people with HIV or other chronic illnesses.

8- Veteran cinematographer Aloysius Vincent passes away

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Aloysius Vincent

Veteran cinematographer and multilingual director Aloysius Vincent passed away on 25 February 2015 in Chennai, Tamil Nadu. He was 86. He is survived by his two cinematographer sons Jayanan Vincent and Ajayan Vincent and wife and daughter.

About Aloysius Vincent

A. Vincent was born on 14 June 1928 in in Calicut (now known as Kozhikode) in Kerala. In 1953, he started his career as a guest cinematographer Telugu film Chandi Rani. Since then he has worked as cinematographer in more than 150 films. His last film as cinematographer is Telugu film Annamayya (1997). He also had dominated the Tamil film world as cinematographer and later become renowned in Telugu and Hindi films. A. Vincent is also multilingual director. Since mid-1960s he had directed around 30 movies in Malayalam, Tamil, Telugu and Hindi. Some of his famous directed films were Bhargavi Nilayam (1964), Murrapennu (1965), Nagarame Nanni (1967) and Asuravithua (1968). Vincent was also credited for introducing the zoom shot in Indian cinema in 1958 Tamil film Uthama Puthiran. Awards: In 2003, Indian Society of Cinematographers (ISC) awarded him an honorary membership. He also has won Filmfare Best Cinematographer Award for Prem Nagar (1974).

9- Union Cabinet gives nod for 15000 MW grid-connected solar projects

Union Cabinet on 25 February 2015 approved the implementation of the scheme for setting up of 15,000 Mega Watt (MW) Grid-connected Solar Photo Voltaic Power projects under the National Solar Mission. This decision was taken at Union Cabinet meeting chaired by Prime Minister Narendra Modi. Facts about approved Scheme It will be implemented under the National Solar Mission through state-run National Thermal Power Corporation (NTPC) Limited and its subsidiary NTPC Vidyut Vyapar Nigam (NVVN) Limited. This project will also accelerate the process of achieving grid tariff parity for solar power and help to reduce consumption of conventional fuel such as kerosene and diesel. Bundled power produced from these projects will allotted to various states that will provide land for setting up projects. In case of projects development both private and government companies can take part in it. But they will be allocated projects through international competitive bidding.

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