Cartosat-2 launch tomorrow: Countdown for Isro’s ‘eye in the sky’ begins

When Indian Army soldiers conducted surgical strikes, they had help from an ‘eye in the sky’

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The 28-hour countdown operation of the PSLV-C38/Cartosat-2 series satellite mission started on Thursday at 05:29 hours IST.

This comes after the Mission Readiness Review Committee and Launch Authorisation Board cleared the countdown on Wednesday.

Current Affairs : The Indian Space Research Organisation (Isro) is gearing up to launch its Cartosat-2 series satellite for earth observation along with 30 co-passenger satellites.

Isro’s workhorse, the Polar Satellite Launch Vehicle (PSLV), in its 40th flight (PSLV-C38), will carry these satellites into orbit. The rocket is scheduled to take off from the Sriharikota space port near Chennai at 9.29 am on Friday.

The rocket will carry the 712 Kg Cartosat-2 series satellite and 30 co-passenger satellites, together weighing about 243 Kg at lift-off, into a 505 Km polar Sun Synchronous Orbit.

Also Read : Isro to launch Cartosat-2 along with 30 smaller satellites on Friday

The PSLV-C38 will be launched from the first launch pad of the Satish Dhawan Space Centre, Sriharikota. This will be the seventeenth flight of the PSLV in its ‘XL’ configuration (with the use of solid strap-on motors).

The primary Cartosat-2 series satellite is a remote sensing satellite. The imagery sent by the satellite will be useful for cartographic applications, urban and rural applications, coastal land use and regulation, utility management like road network monitoring, water distribution, creation of land use maps, change detection to bring out geographical and man-made features, and various other land information systems, as well as for geographical information system (GIS) applications.

The co-passenger satellites comprise 30 nano satellites from India and 14 other countries — Austria, Belgium, Chile, Czech Republic, Finland, France, Germany, Italy, Japan, Latvia, Lithuania, Slovakia, United Kingdom, and the United States of America. The total weight of all the satellites carried onboard PSLV-C38 is about 955 Kg.

The 30 international customer nano satellites are being launched as part of commercial arrangements with Antrix Corporation Limited (Antrix), Isro’s commercial arm.

What does the Cartosat satellite do?

Full text of Kumble’s resignation letter as he quits as India head coach

Kumble stayed back in England instead of travelling with the team for their next assignment

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Current Affairs : Legendary leg-spinner Anil Kumble has decided against continuing as the head coach of the Indian cricket team, it was announced on Tuesday.

According to reports, Kumble, whose one-year tenure was scheduled to end at the conclusion of the ICC Champions Trophy in England and Wales, stayed back in England instead of travelling with the team for their next assignment in the West Indies.

Anil Kumble

Here is the full text of his resignation letter:

Also Read:

India after Kumble: 5 contenders who have applied to be next head coach

Coach vs Captain: Partnership with Kohli had become untenable, says Kumble

Anil Kumble decides to step down as Team India head coach

Why NDA chose Bihar Governor Kovind, a Dalit leader, as President nominee

Kovind’s name was a surprise to those who wanted somebody with a Hindutva image to be the candidate

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Politics News : Bihar Governor Ram Nath Kovind, a Dalit leader of the Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP), will be the presidential candidate of the National Democratic Alliance (NDA), and in all likelihood the next President of India.

The BJP Parliamentary Board decided Kovind’s candidature at its meeting on Monday. Kovind is widely respected among political circles for his integrity and people remember his family to have led an abstemious lifestyle during his political career, including when he was a Rajya Sabha member from 1994 to 2006.

The BJP-led NDA has 48.6 per cent votes in the electoral college and has been promised support from regional parties like the Telangana Rashtra Samiti, YSR Congress Party, and All India Anna Dravida Munnetra Kazhagam.

Also Read : Why NDA chose Bihar Governor Kovind, a Dalit leader, as President nominee

BJP chief Amit Shah said his party has informed Opposition parties, including the Congress, about its decision. He said that Prime Minister Narendra Modi has spoken with Congress president Sonia Gandhi and former prime minister Manmohan Singh regarding the matter too. Shah expressed hope that other parties will support the NDA candidate. Kovind’s name was a surprise to most, including those within the BJP and the Rashtriya Swayamsevak Sangh (RSS) who had been insisting that somebody with a Hindutva image be the NDA candidate. In the choice of Kovind, Modi and Shah seem to have outmanoeuvred not just the Opposition but also convinced the RSS leadership.

Given the political symbolism, several in the Opposition might find it difficult to oppose Kovind’s candidature. While the Left parties are set to field their own candidate as they consider this an ideological fight with the Sangh Parivar, many others like the Janata Dal (United) and Bahujan Samaj Party might not find it politically sagacious to oppose Kovind. Both parties have a significant Dalit support base. Other parties were yet to make their position public at the time of filing of this report. It would be very difficult even for the Congress to oppose his candidature.

The BJP’s choice of Kovind comes at a time when Dalit groups have protested in Uttar Pradesh against the Yogi Adityanath government and raised their voice about the increasing atrocities against Dalits by upper castes and cow vigilantes. Selecting Kovind should help the BJP’s efforts at consolidating its Dalit support base in the run up to the 2019 Lok Sabha polls. Kovind would become the second Dalit President of India, after KR Narayanan who served as the President from 1997 to 2002.

Shah said that Kovind will file his nomination on June 23. Kovind is a two-term Rajya Sabha member. His terms were from 1994 to 2000 and 2000 to 2006. Kovind is a lawyer by profession and he hails from the Kanpur rural district. “He is from the Dalit community and from humble beginnings he has struggled to reach a high office,” Shah said. He said the NDA is yet to decide upon its vice-presidential candidate.

Who is Ram Nath Kovind

ICC Champions Trophy: Pakistan army mocks India after victory

Pakistan won the Champions Trophy cricket final on Sunday by defeating India by 180 runs

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Current Affairs : Pakistan Army has mocked India after the country’s resounding victory in the Champions Trophy cricket final, sharing photos of celebrations in restive Balochistan with a caption “To whom it may concern’. Lay off”.

After posting photos of Army chief General Qamar Javed Bajwa with victory sign and soldiers dancing over Pakistani triumph over India at the Oval, military spokesman Major General Asif Ghafoor shared pictures from Balochistan where people were celebrating the victory.

“And this is Our Balochistan. ‘To whom it may concern’. Lay off,” he wrote along with photos.

The pictures were apparently in response to Prime Minister Narendra Modi’s Independence Day speech last year in which he had raised the issue Pakistan’s atrocities on people of Baluchistan and Pakistan-occupied Kashmir.

Ghafoor also posted a video showing people in Srinagar purportedly celebrating Pakistan’s victory over India.

“And this is………Srinagar!!” he wrote.

In another tweet, he said, “Valiant soldiers of Pakistan congrat Team Pak & Nation. United we shall defend Pak against all threats our enemies hatch.”

Pakistan won the Champions Trophy cricket final on Sunday by defeating India by 180 runs.

Where is no sex in booklet? AYUSH min slams reports on ‘lust guidelines’ for pregnancy

AYUSH said media paid selective attention to the suggestions on page 14 of the booklet

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Current Affairs : The Ministry of AYUSH on Wednesday termed the reports incorrect that said that an AYUSH booklet stated that pregnant women should control lust, hang “beautiful” pictures on the wall and shun non-vegetarian food to deliver a healthy baby.

In a statement, the AYUSH said, “Some reports have appeared in the print and electronic media since June 13, 2017 concerning the publication ‘Mother and Child Care’ of Central Council for Research in Yoga and Naturopathy (CCRYN), an autonomous body under the Ministry of AYUSH. Unfortunately, many of these reports are seen to be inaccurate, and some are even seen to misrepresent facts.”

The Ministry said that nowhere in the booklet ‘no sex’ has been mentioned.

“Some news reports carry an assertion that the booklet puts forward the ‘prescription’ that ‘pregnant women in India’ should ‘say no to sex after conception’. This is far from the truth. In fact, the words ‘no sex’ do not feature at all in the booklet,” it added.

The AYUSH Ministry statement said that the media paid selective attention to the suggestions on page 14 of the booklet.

“The suggestion on page 14 of the booklet regarding avoiding certain types of food like tea, coffee, white flour products, fried and oily items and non-veg during pregnancy, is seen to have received selective attention. The suggestion that non-vegetarian food may be avoided (as Yoga & Naturopathy don’t advocate non-vegetarian food in its practice) has been singled out for high-lighting in some reports, omitting the mention of white flour products, fried and oily items etc,” it added.

The Ministry also termed the media claims ‘incorrect’ that the report that it was released by the Minister of State (IC) for AYUSH in the recent past.

“This publication has been in distribution through the units of the erstwhile Department of AYUSH and CCRYN since 2013. The report that it was released by the Minister of State (Independent Charge) for AYUSH in the recent past is incorrect,” said the AYUSH in a statement. ReadMore

Intense hate campaign against me by media knows no bounds: Vijay Mallya

Former Indian politician and billionaire businessman Vijay Mallya, centre, arrives for his extradition hearing arrives at Westminster Magistrates Court in London.

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After mocking India saying “keep dreaming about a billion pounds”, fugitive loan defaulter Vijay Mallya took on the media for running an “intense hate campaign” against him.

“Intense hate campaign by Indian media against me knows no bounds. The GOI (Government of India) has filed a case which is before a UK court. Wait for verdict,” he tweeted.

The Twitter post came after a London court pushed back the date of a hearing to decide whether he should be extradited to India.

Intense hate campaign by Indian media against me knows no bounds. The GOI has filed a case which is before a U.K. court. Wait for verdict.

— Vijay Mallya (@TheVijayMallya) June 14, 2017

Current Affairs : Mallya has had run-ins with the media previously as well. After his brazen appearance at a Champions Trophy cricket match, he had on June 4 tweeted: “Wide sensational media coverage on my attendance at the India vs Pakistan match at Edgbaston. I intend to attend all games to cheer the Indian team.”

On Tuesday, the 61-year-old liquor baron had claimed he has “enough evidence” to plead his case in the Rs 9,000 crore loan default case and taunted India saying, “you can keep dreaming about a billion pounds”.

“I deny all allegations that have been made and I will continue to deny them,” he said after appearing before the Westminster Magistrates’ Court for the hearing of an extradition case against him.

Chief Magistrate Emma Louise Arbuthnot granted him bail until December 4. The next hearing has been set for July 6.

He denied media reports that he was booed by Indian cricket fans when he arrived to watch the India vs South Africa cricket match at The Oval on Sunday, saying only a “couple of drunk” people had chanted “chor, chor” (thief, thief) but there were several others who came up to him and wished him well.

India crush SA; to face Bangladesh in Champions Trophy semi-final

Man of the Match Jasprit Bumrah (2/28 in 8 overs) was on target with his blockhole deliveries

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Defending champions India VS South Africa in all departments of the game to enter the semi-finals of the ICC Champions Trophy with a comprehensive eight-wicket victory in London on Sunday.

India will meet Bangladesh in the semi-finals in Birmingham on Thursday.

The Proteas lived up to their ‘Perennial Chokers’ tag in a virtual quarter-final clash that turned out to be a thoroughly one-sided encounter.

Shikhar Dhawan (78 off 83 balls) and skipper Virat Kohli (76 off 101 balls) made it look like a walk in the park as India chased down a target of 192 in only 38 overs.

Current Affairs : It was Dhawan’s third 50-plus score in the competition, while skipper Kohli made amends for a rare failure against Sri Lanka in style, notching up his 41st ODI half-century.

On a day when it mattered the most, India brought their A-game to the fore while AB de Villiers’ men wilted under pressure, as it has been with them in high-stakes games.

The Indian bowling was disciplined, the fielding exceptional with three run-outs, and then there was a professional batting performance.

If it’s the Champions Trophy 2017 , Dhawan can hardly put a foot wrong as he hit 12 fours and a flicked six off Morne Morkel over deep square leg.

If Dhawan muscled the ball through the off-side cordon, Kohli caressed it with care, hitting seven fours and a six as the duo added 128 runs for the second wicket.

A rhythm player to the core, Dhawan has made the best use of the second lease of life that he has got in this Champions Trophy. The ferocity with which he drove was a treat to watch. A lot of his shots were in the arc between cover and mid-off. When Imran Tahir bowled short, he pulled him with disdain.

Skipper Kohli also made merry with no pressure. He saw off Morkel’s first spell before teeing off with a cover driven six off rookie pacer Andile Phehlykwayo.

He later used the extra pace of Morkel to hit him down the ground, whip him through mid-wicket and slash the pacer over the off-side cordon.

By the time India’s total touched 100, the match was as good as over. It was Yuvraj Singh, who finished the match with a pulled six off JP Duminy. ReadMore >>>