The Daily Brief – 19th February, 2017

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Image result for barren island volcano

  • India’s only active volcano — the Barren Island volcano — in the Andaman and Nicobar Islands is spewing lava and ash but scientists say that so far it is too small to significantly affect weather patterns. A team of scientists led by Dr. Abhay V. Mudholkar and Dr. B Nagender Nath, from CSIR-National Institute of Oceanography (CSIR-NIO), Goa, reported its observations of smoke plumes and streaming lava. The Barren Island volcano, located 140 km northeast of Port Blair, had been dormant for more than 150 years until 1991, when the eruption significantly altered local weather.
  • Chief Minister Mehbooba Mufti declared 2017 as the ‘Year of Apple’ in a major bid to promote the famed Kashmiri apples in domestic and foreign markets. The Chief Minister launched the High Density Apple Plantation Scheme in Srinagar. These high-density plants will be routed through J&K Bank along with the subsidy.
  • The Indian women’s team won a silver at the Asian Rugby Sevens Trophy at Vientiane, Laos. The team participated under the aegis of the Indian Rugby Football Union (IRFU), the governing body for the sport in India and supported by Societe Generale, the financial partner of Rugby India.
  • R.P. Shah, one of the three General Managers of BCCI, resigned from his post, citing age. Shah was considered to be one of the big decision makers in board’s commercial interest.
  • The Hindu Marriage Bill 2017, which is the first elaborate personal law for the minority community in Pakistan, was adopted by the Senate. The bill had already been approved by the lower house or the National Assembly on September 26, 2015, and it now just needs signature of the President, a mere formality, to become a law. The bill relates to marriage, registration of marriage, separation and remarriage, with the minimum age of marriage set at 18 years.
  • In a Mexican cave system, scientists have discovered life trapped in crystals that could be 50,000 years old. The bizarre and ancient microbes were found dormant in caves in Naica, Mexico, and were able to exist by living on minerals such as iron and manganese.
  • Astronauts aboard the International Space Station (ISS) have harvested the first crop of Chinese cabbage after spending nearly a month tending to the leafy greens, according to the NASA. While the space station crew will get to eat some of the Tokyo Bekana Chinese cabbage harvested by astronaut Peggy Whitson, the rest is being saved for scientific study back at NASA’s Kennedy Space Centre. This is the fifth crop grown aboard the station, and the first Chinese cabbage. The crop was chosen after evaluating several leafy vegetables on a number of criteria, such as how well they grow and their nutritional value.

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