Latest Current Affairs – April 14 & 15 2018
1. Railways to launch ‘MADAD’ app for lodging complaints
The Indian Railways is planning to launch a dedicated mobile application this month for lodging grievances called ‘MADAD’ (Mobile Application for Desired Assistance During travel). The complaint registered through the app will reach relevant officials of the concerned divisions directly. Passengers can also track the status of the complaints and will be notified of any action taken in the case.
2. Daniel Ricciardo wins Chinese GP
Red Bull Formula 1 driver Daniel Ricciardo celebrated his sixth career victory by drinking champagne from his shoe after winning the Chinese Grand Prix. Defending champion Lewis Hamilton finished fourth while Ferrari’s Sebastian Vettel was placed eighth. Mercedes’ Valtteri Bottas secured the second place with compatriot Ferrari driver Kimi Raikkonen ended the race at third place.
3. SpaceX to launch NASA’s space telescope for planet search
Elon Musk-led SpaceX is set to launch NASA’s space telescope called TESS (Transiting Exoplanet Survey Satellite) to search for other planets orbiting distant stars. NASA’s TESS will monitor 200,000 of the nearest stars using the same method that enabled Kepler’s spacecraft to spot 2,600 confirmed exoplanets. It is scheduled to launch on April 16 aboard a SpaceX Falcon 9 rocket.
4. UN rejects Russian attempt to condemn US aggression in Syria
The UN Security Council has rejected a Russian resolution to condemn “aggression” by the US, the UK and France against Syria. Russia had also demanded an immediate halt to any further use of force by the three Western allies. The three countries carried out missile strikes on Syria over a suspected chemical attack that killed at least 70 people.
5. Oscar-winning director Miloš Forman passes away at 86
Miloš Forman, known for directing the Oscar-winning film ‘One Flew Over the Cuckoo’s Nest’ passed away aged 86 after a short illness. “His departure was calm and he was surrounded the whole time by his family and his closest friends,” said his wife Martina. Forman also won the Best Director Oscar for his film ‘Amadeus’ in 1985.
6. PM launches national healthcare programme Ayushman Bharat
On the occasion of Ambedkar Jayanti, PM Narendra Modi launched the first phase of the government’s ambitious Ayushman Bharat healthcare programme by inaugurating its first wellness centre in Chhattisgarh’s Bijapur. The programme is aimed at creating a network of 1.5 lakh health and wellness centres at an estimated cost of ₹1200 crore.
7. HyperloopTT begins building its 1st test track in France
High-speed transportation system developer Hyperloop Transportation Technologies (HyerloopTT) has started the construction of what it claims is the world’s first full-scale passenger and freight system in France. The company said that the first set of tubes designed to move both people and freight has arrived. The first phase includes a closed 320-metre system that will be operational this year.
8. Commonwealth Games: India retains its third position with 26 gold medals
India held on to the third position in the overall medal tally with 66 medals — 26 gold, 20 silver and 20 bronze medals.
- Manika Batra created history by becoming the first Indian woman table tennis player to win a singles gold while Sharath Kamal and G Sathiyan settled for a silver in the men’s doubles event.
- In Athletics, 20-year old Neeraj Chopra on Saturday became the first Indian javelin thrower to claim a gold medal pulling off a season’s best effort of 86.47 meters in the final.
- In Boxing events, five-time world champion and Olympic Bronze-medallist MC Mary Kom began the day by winning a gold medal defeating Northern Ireland’s Kristina O’Hara 5-0 in the 48-kg final.
- Mary Kom also became first Indian woman boxer to win a Commonwealth Gold. Gaurav Solanki picked up the Gold in 52 kg. Amit Panghal (49kg) and Manish Kaushik (60kg) settled for Silver medals .In shooting, Sanjeev Rajput won the gold medal in the men’s 50 metre rifle 3 positions event.
- The day’s other gold came through Somveer when he won the men’s Freestyle wrestling event in 86 kg division. Vinesh Phogat added another Gold in Wrestling by winning the women’s 50 kg freestyle event.
9. UN launches road safety trust fund
Citing tragic road accidents in India and Canada, UN Deputy Secretary-General Amina Mohammed termed traffic deaths an urgent global concern as the world body launched a trust fund aimed at spurring action to help save lives in road accidents.
During the General Assembly debate on road safety, Mohammed said traffic accidents are the number one cause of death of young people and are responsible for keeping millions of people in poverty each year. “Road traffic deaths and injuries have become a serious and urgent global concern. Around 1.3 million drivers, passengers and pedestrians die each year, and up to 50 million are injured on the world’s roads,” she said.
10. India to host second edition of IMC in October 2018
The second edition of India Mobile Congress (IMC) is scheduled to be held from October 25-27, 2018 in New Delhi. The decision was taken after the successful debut of the first edition in 2017. The 2018 edition of IMC will witness participation from ASEAN and BIMSTEC members as well.
Overall, more than 200,000 professionals from various sectors of the telecom industry including 5G, start-up ecosystem, Internet of Things (IoT), Big Data, Artificial Intelligence (AI), Smart Cities and allied industry sectors are expected to attend the event.
The first edition of IMC, which was held in September 2017, was attended by around 2,000 delegates, 32,000 visitors, 152 speakers, 100 exhibitors and 100 start-ups.
11. NASA set to launch Transiting Exoplanet Survey Satellite to search exoplanets
The National Aeronautics and Space Administration (NASA) is set to launch its Transiting Exoplanet Survey Satellite (TESS) to detect planets outside the solar system.
The satellite will be launched on a SpaceX Falcon 9 rocket from Cape Canaveral Air Force Station, Florida on April 16, 2018. TESS will settle into a 13.7-day orbit around Earth with the help of a gravitational assist from the Moon.
TESS is fixed with four wide-field cameras for a field-of-view that covers 85 percent of the entire sky. Once put in orbit, Tess will spend around two years, surveying some 200000 of the brightest stars near the Sun in search of planets.
The Transiting Exoplanet Survey Satellite (TESS) is a NASA Astrophysics Explorer mission operated by Massachusetts Institute of Technology (MIT) and managed by NASA’s Goddard Space Flight Centre in Greenbelt, Maryland.
12. Germany top FIFA rankings, Brazil second
The FIFA/Coca-Cola World Ranking of April 2018 ranked current world champions, Germany at the top despite one draw and defeat in March.
In the international friendly matches that were played last month, Germany had lost 1-0 to Brazil and drew 0-0 with Spain. The nation with 1533 points still has quite a lead over Brazil, which is ranked at the second position with 1384 points.
While Belgium moved up two places to the third rank, Portugal and Argentina each dropped a place to be ranked fourth and fifth respectively. The rankings list featured Germany, Brazil, Belgium, Portugal, Argentina, Switzerland, France, Spain, Chile and Poland in the top ten.
13. Haryana Cabinet approves new rehabilitation policy for slum dwellers
The state cabinet of Haryana has approved the Slum-In-Situ Rehabilitation Policy to provide housing facility to the slum dwellers in the state without making them relocate to other areas. The cabinet was chaired by the state’s Chief Minister Manohar Lal Khattar.
Under the new policy, a total of Rs 1.67 lakh per dwelling unit will be provided to the developer for the construction of the houses. The expenditure for building the housing facility for the slum dwellers will be borne by the Centre and the state government.
While the Union government will provide financial assistance worth Rs one lakh per dwelling unit, the state government will provide assistance worth Rs 67,000 per dwelling unit.
14. Union Government to constitute Task Force for fast-tracking Unmanned Aerial Vehicle Technology
The Union Government on April 12, 2018 announced to constitute a Task Force under the Chairmanship of Jayant Sinha, Minister of State for Civil Aviation, for fast-tracking the roll-out of Unmanned Aerial Vehicle (UAV) technology.
The Task Force will build up a strategy to accelerate the development of Unmanned Aerial Vehicle Technology with implementable recommendations for Central Government, State Governments, industries and research institutions.
The Headquarters of the Task Force will be at Union Ministry of Civil Aviation, New Delhi.