Current Affairs of 18 January 2015

1.South African cricketer AB de Villiers hits fastest century in ODIs
South Africa’s AB de Villiers hit the fastest century in one—day internationals today against the West Indies in Johannesburg. The 30—year—old South African captain needed just 31 balls to reach 100 —— five balls fewer than Corey Anderson’s hundred for New Zealand against the West Indies in 2013/14.
De Villers helped South Africa —— 1—0 up in the series —— score an imposing 439 for two after being sent in to bat. That was the second highest total in one—day internationals and the highest between two Test nations. De Villiers made 149 off 44 balls. His innings included 16 sixes, which equalled the record set by Rohit Sharma on the way to a score of 209 for India against Australia in Bangalore in 2013/14.
It was an astonishing display of power hitting mixed with finesse. Hashim Amla (153 not out) and Rilee Rossouw (128) put on 247 for the first wicket — a record partnership for any wicket for South Africa.
Rossouw was dismissed off the third ball of the 39th over.

2.5th General Assembly of IRENA begins in Abu Dhabi
The 5th General Assembly of the International Renewable Energy Agency (IRENA) has began in Abu Dhabi.Government leaders from more than 150 countries including India and representatives from more than 110 international organizations are taking part in this two day meet. 5th meet of IRENA seeks to address global issues like enhancing the share of renewable energy in the overall energy mix and to tackle global challenges like climate change, energy access and energy security. About International Renewable Energy Agency (IRENA) It is an intergovernmental organization to promote adoption and sustainable use of renewable energy. It is the global hub for renewable energy cooperation and information exchange within its member nations. It was founded in 2009 and its statute entered into force on 8 July 2010. Headquarters: Abu Dhabi.Members: In total it has 138 Members. India is one of the 33 Permanent members of IRENA.

3 IAF gets first indigenously-built Light Combat Aircraft Tejas
First indigenously-built Light Combat Aircraft (LCA) Tejas was handed over to the Indian Air Force (IAF) by Defence Minister Manohar Parrikar at ceremony held at Bengaluru, Karanataka. It was handed over after it was granted Initial Operational Clearance (IOC)-II, which signifies that aircraft is airworthy to fly in different conditions. About Light Combat Aircraft (LCA) Tejas Tejas is outcome of India’s LCA programme, which began in the 1983 to replace country’s aging MiG-21 fighters. It is a lightweight multi-role jet fighter indigenously-built by state-owned Hindustan Aeronautics Limited (HAL).It is a tailless and having compound delta wing design. It is powered by a single engine. It is mounted with inbuilt MultiMode Radar (MMR), Radar Warning Receiver (RWR) systems. As part of LCA programme, 20 aircraft will be built by 2017-2018, to make the first squadron of the aircraft.IOC-I was granted to the aircraft in January 2011 after it was built by HAL. While, IOC- II was granted in September 2014, after the aircraft successfully completed its maiden flight. It is yet to receive the Final Operational Clearance (FOC) and excepted to receive it by the year-end which includes testing mid-air refuelling and its long-range missiles capabilities.

4.AP govt inks pact with ICRISAT to boost sustainable farming
The Andhra Pradesh government has signed a pact with the International Crop Research Institute for the Semi-Arid Tropics (ICRISAT) to provide assistance in making agriculture sustainable and profitable. “The agreement with ICRISAT is part of the State Government’s plans to increase productivity of agriculture and allied sectors,” the state government said. The Memorandum of Agreement was signed yesterday in the presence of Chief Minister N Chandrababu Naidu by Special Chief Secretary (Planning) S P Tucker and ICRISAT Director-General David Bergvinson. Through the agreement, the best technological tools and scientific practices from across the world will be incorporated into primary sector activities, said a State Government release quoting the Chief Minister. As part of the agreement, the ICRISAT would prepare a “strategy paper” for primary sector mission, hold research and development and establish “sites of learning” in districts.

5. Egypt’s best-known actresses Faten Hamama passes away
One of Egypt’s best known actresses Faten Hamama has passed away. She was 83. She was known as the Lady of the Arabic Screen and was a star of the golden age of Egyptian cinema. About Faten Hamama She was born in 1931. She had started her film career in 1939, when she was only 7 years old in Youm Saeed (Happy Day), alongside legendary singer Mohamed Abdel Wehab. She was an Arab film icon who had appeared in almost 100 films.

6. President launches pulse polio immunization programme
President Pranab Mukherjee has launched the Pulse Polio Immunization(PPI) Programme by administering polio drops to children at the Rashtrapati Bhavan. It was launched by President ahead of the National Immunization Day which is observed on 18 January. PPI Programme is a Government drive to sustain polio eradication from the country. As part of it children less than 5 years of age are given polio vaccine drops. Background Since 1995, India has been implementing the Pulse Polio Immunization Programme. On 27 March 2014, India and 7 other Asian countries were declared polio-free by the World Health Organisation (WHO). 7 other Asian countries are: Bangladesh, Bhutan, North Korea, Thailand, Indonesia, the Maldives and Myanmar. It should be noted that WHO declares any country polio free if no case is reported for three consecutive years.

7. New app lets you help the blind see
A new app helps you ‘lend’ your eyes to a visually impaired person and answer their questions over video chat to help them navigate or read a sign. The app Be My Eyes, developed by a Danish non-profit, connects blind and sighted people through their iPhones and iPads. A visually impaired person can sign up for the service and reach out to sighted users through a live video connection on the app.Once connected, blind users can ask sighted users questions over video chat. A sighted user will get a request on their phone as a push notification with a ringing sound, according to ‘The Huffington Post’. If the user is unable to answer it, the request will go to someone else. There are currently more than 17,800 sighted people and 1,500 blind people using the app, according to the Be My Eyes website. More than 2,900 pairs of blind and sighted people have been connected so far.

8 Indo-US clean energy plans run into Make in India policy
A cooperation agreement between India and the U.S. on ‘clean’ or renewable energy, set to be one of the highlights of President Obama’s visit to India, has run into U.S. concerns over the government’s ‘Make in India’ plan. According to officials, during his visit to the Vibrant Gujarat, U.S. Secretary of State John Kerry brought up worries over the government’s push for the use of indigenously made technology, calling it the new “make in India law”.

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