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Showing posts from January 7, 2017

India will outpace China in growth, despite demonetisation: Singapore academic (hindu,)

The slowdown, albeit temporary, will not alter country’s long-term economic tempo, says Indian-origin Kishore Mahbubani.

Indian economy will grow faster than China despite the temporary slowdown created by demonetisation, an Indian—origin academic and former Singaporean diplomat said at a conference of leading world universities here today.

“Even if the demonetisation created a slowdown, it is not going to change the long-term momentum of where India is going with its economic growth,” said Kishore Mahbubani, Dean of the Lee Kuan Yew School of Public Policy at the National University of Singapore.

‘Will be good in the long-term’

Concluding a three-day conference attended by educators from leading universities from across the world that make up the Association of Professional Schools of International Affairs, Mr. Mahbubani said demonetisation was good for Indian economy in the long-term.

“I think demonetisation is a good thing for a lot of [black] money has come back into the economy.…

Jeanette Epps set to become first African-American astronaut to fly to ISS (the hindu)

NASA astronaut Jeanette Epps is set to become the first African-American crew member aboard the International Space Station (ISS) when she flies to the orbital post in May next year, the U.S. space agency said on Thursday.

NASA assigned veteran Andrew Feustel and Epps to missions aboard the ISS in 2018.

Feustel will launch in March 2018 for his first long-duration mission, serving as a flight engineer on Expedition 55 and later as commander of Expedition 56.

Epps will join Feustel as a flight engineer on Expedition 56 and remain on board for Expedition 57.

“Each space station crew brings something different to the table, and Drew and Jeanette both have a lot to offer. The space station will benefit from having them on board,” said Chris Cassidy, chief of the Astronaut Office at NASA’s Johnson Space Centre in Houston.

Epps earned a bachelor’s degree in physics in 1992 at LeMoyne College in her hometown of Syracuse, New York.

She went on to complete a master’s of science in 1994 and a …

Earth-like snow, ice features found on Pluto (hindu,)

“Penitentes” — formed by erosion — are bowl-shaped depressions with spires around the edge and indicate presence of an atmosphere.

Scientists have found evidence of Earth-like snow and ice features on Pluto, using a model similar to what meteorologists use to forecast weather on our planet and a computer simulation of the physics of evaporating ices.

“Penitentes” which are formed by erosion, are bowl-shaped depressions with spires around the edge, and are several metres high.

The groundbreaking research, done in collaboration with researchers at NASA and Johns Hopkins University, indicates that these icy features may exist on other planets where environmental conditions are similar.

“The identification of the ridges of Tartarus Dorsa as Penitentes suggests that the presence of an atmosphere is necessary for the formation of penitentes, which would explain why they have not previously been seen on other airless icy satellites or dwarf planets,” said Professor John Moores, from York Un…

Dhoni: A remarkable captain (Hindu.)

Mahendra Singh Dhoni is regarded as one of the country’s most dashing cricketers, but his flamboyance is founded, almost ironically, on an inexplicably cool and calculated head. There are no means of divining why he chose to relinquish India’s limited-overs captaincy when he did; his natural reserve ensures that his cards are almost always played close to his chest. In the context of where Indian cricket is at this juncture, it appears like an exceptionally clear-sighted decision, brave and selfless in equal measure. He has effectively said he will earn a place as a wicketkeeper-batsman. He has given the team management time to build to the next World Cup, in 2019; if he is not a part of that vision, he will not hold down a spot merely by virtue of being skipper. Given Dhoni’s standing, he is probably the only one who could have made that call. It is unlikely that any selection panel will have summoned the courage to drop him. While his glove-work has not dipped significantly — he re…

Clamping down on ordinance raj (Hindu)

Both superior courts and constitutional functionaries have routinely deprecated the propensity of governments to take the ordinance route for mere political expediency. The temptation to use the power vested in the President and the Governors under Articles 123 and 213 of the Constitution is generally a result of one of the following three reasons: reluctance to face the legislature on particular issues, fear of defeat in the Upper House where the government may lack the required numbers, and the need to overcome an impasse in the legislature caused by repeated and wilful disruption by a vociferous section of the Opposition. The verdict of a seven-member Bench of the Supreme Court breaks new ground in highlighting the constitutional limitations on the cavalier resort to ordinances. The Supreme Court had already declared in 1986, in D.C. Wadhwa, that repeated re-promulgation of ordinances was unconstitutional. Now, in Krishna Kumar Singh v. State of Bihar, it goes deeper and concludes…