Tuesday, March 18, 2014

Current Affairs 15 March 2014

App for women's protection launched by BJP

  • In poll season, the Bharatiya Janata Party is trying to impress women with the launch of a safety mobile application. Named 'Raksha' (security), the application allows women to sound an alarm in case of an emergency.
  • The application is conceptualised by party spokesperson Meenakshi Lekhi .
  • It will create a group of trusted people who can be alerted, offer a map view for easy navigation and has a loud buzzer too.
  • Even if the Rakhsa application is switched off and isn't running, pressing the volume key for just three seconds alerts the specific contacts who are chosen beforehand.

Holi at Meera Sahabhagini Ashram

  • About 1000 widows, shunning the shackles of social stigma, played Holi with colours and gulal at Meera Sahabhagini Ashram just a day before Holi.
  • It was for the first time that the widows gathered in such a large number to play Holi with gulal and water color at the 200-year-old Ashram. They poured colour on each other in the presence of a large number of tourists and followers of Lord Krishna in the pilgrim town of Vrindavan.
  • Countering the age-old social evil of widowhood, several widows have taken shelter in this holy city. It was a remarkable sight when the widows, mostly in the 70s and 80s, stooping low with age, danced and splashed more than 500 kg of gulal and gallons of water colours on each other.

Initiative by France to ease air pollution

  • Recently, France has proposed free transport over the weekend after poor air quality and pollution hit a record level in the country’s northern region, particularly in Paris and its suburbs.
  • The increase in pollution level was caused by above average temperatures heating up traffic and industrial pollutants and the hot air re-circulating slowly across densely populated north France and the capital.
  • In Paris, officials encourage residents and visitors to use Velib and Autolib, public sharing services of bicycle and electric cars.
  • Furthermore, the government recommended to reduce driving speeds, avoid intense physical activity and outdoor walks with children under 6 years of age, and a prohibition against lighting fires outside

World's first solar-powered toilet

  • A revolutionary waterless toilet powered by the sun, developed to help some of the 2.5 billion people lacking safe and sustainable sanitation around the world, will be unveiled in India this month.
  • Designed and built using a $7,77,000 grant from the Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation, the self-contained, waterless toilet with its innovative technology converts human waste to biochar, a highly porous charcoal.
  • It aims to provide an eco-friendly solution to help some of the 2.5 billion people around the world lacking safe and sustainable sanitation.

Below 5 per cent inflation

  • Inflation slipped to a nine-month low of 4.68 per cent on the back of easing prices of onion and potatoes and giving comfort levels for a possible rate cut by the Reserve Bank of India (RBI) in the monetary policy review on April 1.
  • Inflation based on the Wholesale Price Index (WPI) came down to 4.68 per cent in February from 7.28 per cent a year ago. It was 5.05 per cent in January 2014.
  • Food inflation, which has been a major cause of concern for the government, dropped to 8.12 per cent in February, compared to 8.8 per cent in January as the rate of price rise slowed in almost all items, except fruits, rice and milk.
  • Inflation, which is on decline since December, was 5.05 per cent in January. Prior to February, the lowest WPI was recorded in May, 2013, at 4.58 per cent. In June, it had inched up again to 5.16 per cent.

The largest yellow star discovered

  • An international team of astronomers has spotted the largest yellow star ever discovered, ranking among the ten largest stars found so far.
  • "Surprisingly large" was the term Olivier Chesneau and his international team used to describe HR 5171 A, a hypergiant star more than 1300 times the diameter of the Sun.
  • Using the European Southern Observatory's Very Large Telescope Interferometer, the astronomers determined that the yellow star is about a million times brighter than the Sun and 50% larger than the famous red supergiant, Betelguese.
  • This makes HR 5171 A the largest yellow star ever found, and one of the ten largest stars.

Swiss Grand Prix Gold

  • Producing yet another emphatic performance, Indian giant slayer P V Sindhu stunned the recently-crowned All England champion Shixian Wang to breeze into the semifinals even as it was end of road for Saina Nehwal at the $125,000 Swiss Grand Prix Gold .
  • In the men's singles, Parupalli Kashyap also booked a semifinal berth with a hard-fought victory over sixth seed Tien Chen Chou of Chinese Taipei.
  • Seventh seed Sindhu played a dominating game to assert her supremacy .
  • World number 9 Sindhu showed once again why she is considered to be India's next big badminton sensation as she produced a beautifully controlled and carefully-paced game to keep Shixian at bay throughout the quarterfinal match.

Rajasthan Royals ,Deakin University as partners

  • Australia’s Deakin University will be Rajasthan Royals’ official sports education partner during the upcoming Indian Premier League 2014.
  • The IPL T20 team and Deakin have entered a partnership under which the two organisations will work on promoting sports education in India.
  • Deakin University will initiate research in sports management and sports science. 

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