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Photo source : indian express

By Shriya Katoch

The Line of Control (LOC) separating India and Pakistan has been dubbed as the most dangerous border in the world.The India – Pakistan conflict has been an old one. It has earned this title because of escalating tensions between India and Pakistan, which have been fueled by Pakistan by their acts of sneaking in trained insurgents in India to destabilise the region.

The only reason these two countries are not in the middle of a gory war is because of a concept known as M.A.D, which stands for mutually assured destruction . This acronym came into play during the cold war. Infact the main reason the cold war ended in 1991 was because of M.A.D.

What M.A.D means is that basically if one country attacks the other then the other country will retaliate and since we live in a nuclear age this would amount to complete annihilation. MAD which emerged as a deterrent in the cold war is playing the same role in the India- Pakistan conflict .

The conflict has been present for decades with Kashmir emerging as the flashpoint of the conflict. The reason why Kashmir plays such an integral role is because Pakistan claims control over Kashmir on a majoritarian philosophy that most of the region is Muslim populated , though legally Kashmir belongs to India.

Due to this majoritarian philosophy the Pakistani government and ISI have been training and sending in insurgents in India almost on a daily basis .

A result of this insurgency was the 2008 Mumbai attacks. This attack claimed the lives of 106 people and held the city hostage for 60 hours. The Indians refer to it as their 9/11. The aftermath of this attack resulted in massive public uproar with people on streets. But even in such a high pressure situation the Indian government did not attack Pakistan which was truly commendable. After the 9/11 in USA the government went on war with both Iraq and Afghanistan leading to disastrous consequences .

The continual badgering from Pakistan can lead to a doomsday scenario. Amidst all this USA has been publicly funding Pakistan for years despite knowing that they are the base for the growth of numerous terror organizations.

Infact in the words of Pakistani General ,once head of the ISI, Hamid Gul ” Osama bin laden was a genial man, intelligence oozed out of his eyes . flashing black eyes you know ”

This man was the general of the Pakistani army and head of the isi once known as the most powerful man in Pakistan. After all this USA still funds Pakistan.

Kashmir is quite literally in the middle of the storm . The reason why Kashmir is such an important region is because firstly due to its proximity to Pakistan. Secondly its terrain is hard to monitor and thirdly because of the insurgency carried out by Pakistan .

To put it in plain words enmity between Pakistan and India is irreducible unless Pakistan undergoes a complete makeover and stops being so hellbent on attacking India and disrupting peace, because if pushed over the edge , India will definitely be pushed into a war.

This war will be catastrophic not just for the subcontinent because leading atomic experts have stated that if more than 100 warheads are denoted in a region it will lead to the destruction of the world .

Shriya Katoch multitasks as an Engineering student,an avid reader,a guitar player and a death note fan. Twitter: @katochshriya538



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If humanity is hurt, God is hurt.

Religion without compassion might give way to hatred. Compassion with a "self-interest" motive is completely irreligious. But of late, some of the religions have departed from those basic human values. Love and compassion are for only those who follow their "specific" faith. Very sadly, the religions are up as trading commodities in the world of proselytization. Better preachers attract more followers. Of course, no issue if they are not vying for their religious "supremacy". But the ground reality is utterly different. The claim for exclusive supremacy has become the first commandment --- a real bone of contention among the existing religions. In the name of religion, we have polluted our minds. we have corrupted our souls. We have also gone so much astray that God must have now shut his gateway to heaven!

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Taking out time for family has become very difficult as people are pretty busy in daily life and find very little time to spend with their loved ones. Planning a family vacation is an excellent way through which the whole family can step away from their daily life and have fun. You can find many destinations for a family vacation, but there is no place that can beat Aruba.

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Photo by Flickr

Milky Way galaxy as seen from Chitkul Valley

NASA's Chandra X-ray Observatory has for the first time spotted signs of a planet transiting a star outside of the Milky Way galaxy, opening up a new avenue to search for exoplanets at greater distances than ever before.

The possible exoplanet -- or planets outside of our Solar System -- candidate is located in the spiral galaxy Messier 51 (M51), also called the Whirlpool Galaxy because of its distinctive profile, NASA said in a statement.

Astronomers have, so far, found all other known exoplanets and exoplanet candidates in the Milky Way galaxy, almost all of them less than about 3,000 light-years from Earth.

An exoplanet in M51 would be about 28 million light-years away, meaning it would be thousands of times farther away than those in the Milky Way, NASA said.

"We are trying to open up a whole new arena for finding other worlds by searching for planet candidates at X-ray wavelengths, a strategy that makes it possible to discover them in other galaxies," said Rosanne Di Stefano of the Center for Astrophysics at Harvard and Smithsonian (CfA) in Cambridge, Massachusetts, who led the study.

The findings are published in the journal Nature Astronomy.

The exoplanet candidate was spotted in a binary system called M51-ULS-1, located in M51. This binary system contains a black hole or neutron star orbiting a companion star with a mass about 20 times that of the Sun. The X-ray transit they found using Chandra data lasted about three hours, during which the X-ray emission decreased to zero.

Based on this and other information, the team estimates the exoplanet candidate in M51-ULS-1 would be roughly the size of Saturn and orbit the neutron star or black hole at about twice the distance of Saturn from the Sun.

The team looked for X-ray transits in three galaxies beyond the Milky Way galaxy, using both Chandra and the European Space Agency's XMM-Newton. Their search covered 55 systems in M51, 64 systems in Messier 101 (the "Pinwheel" galaxy), and 119 systems in Messier 104 (the "Sombrero" galaxy).

However, more data would be needed to verify the interpretation as an extragalactic exoplanet. One challenge is that the planet candidate's large orbit means it would not cross in front of its binary partner again for about 70 years, thwarting any attempts for a confirming observation for decades, NASA said.

Named in honor of the late Indian-American Nobel laureate, Subrahmanyan Chandrasekhar, the Chandra X-ray Observatory is the world's most powerful X-ray telescope. It has eight times greater resolution and is able to detect sources more than 20-times fainter than any previous X-ray telescope.

Known to the world as Chandra (which means "moon" or "luminous" in Sanskrit), Chandrasekhar was widely regarded as one of the foremost astrophysicists of the twentieth century. (IANS/JB)

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