ISRO launches 31 satellites along with Cartosat-2
The Indian Space Research Organisation (ISRO) on 12 January 2018 launched 31 satellites along with Cartosat-2 satellite on its 44.4-metre tall Polar Satellite Launch Vehicle (PSLV-C40) rocket. The polar rocket was launched from Sriharikota, Andhra Pradesh.
The 320-tonne rocket placed the satellites one-by-one and deployed them into the earth's lower orbit. The entire lift-off process along with the process of placing the satellites in two orbits will take the satellite 2 hours and 21 minutes. It will be the longest flight time of the PSLV C40.
Among 31 satellites, three satellites belong to India and 28 are of six other countries. The Indian satellites are 710 kg Cartosat-2 series, a 100 kg micro satellite and a 5 kg nano satellite. The 28 other satellites are from Canada, Finland, France, South Korea, the United Kingdom and the United States.
Election Commission constitutes Umesh Sinha Committee to suggest changes RP Act, 1951
The Election Commission of India on 11 January 2018 constituted a 14 member committee to suggest changes to Section 126 of the Representation of the People Act, 1951 (RP Act) in view of social media expansion.
The Committee will be chaired by Senior Deputy Election Commissioner Umesh Sinha.
The Committee will study the impact of new media and social media during the “silence period”, the 48 hours period prior to elections and its implication in view of Section 126 of the RP Act.
Railway Ministry launches SFOORTI Application
With an aim to optimize freight operations, Ministry of Railways on 11 January 2018 launched the Smart Freight Operation Optimisation & Real Time Information (SFOORTI) App for Freight Managers.
The SFOORTI App provides features for monitoring and managing freight business using Geographic Information System (GIS) Views and Dashboard.
With this application, movement of freight trains on Geographic Information System (GIS) view can be tracked. This app provides a Bird’s eye view of all Freight Assets in a single window and provides end to end Rake movement on Geospatial view.
Indu Malhotra, first woman lawyer to be directly promoted as Supreme Court judge
The senior advocate Indu Malhotra has been recommended as a judge of the Supreme Court by the collegium of Supreme Court. Indu Malhotra would become the first woman lawyer to be directly appointed as a judge of the highest court.
Along with Indu Malhotra, Justice K M Joseph has also been cleared for elevation to the apex court. Justice K M Joseph is presently chief justice of Uttarakhand High Court.
In 2004, Justice Joseph was appointed as Permanent Judge in the Kerala High Court and later transferred to Uttarakhand High Court as a Chief Justice in 2014.
Supreme Court administration sometimes not in order: Justice J Chelameswar
Justice J Chelameswar, the second senior most judge in the Supreme Court, on 12 January 2018 said the administration of the apex court is "sometimes not in order" and many "less than desirable things" have taken place.
In an unprecedented move, Justice Chelameswar and three other senior judges held a press conference on various issues relating to the apex court judiciary. Besides Justice Chelameswar, the other judges were Justices Ranjan Gogoi, M B Lokur and Kurian Joseph.
The press conference was called at Justice Chelameswar's Tughlaq Road residence in New Delhi.