Tuesday August 20, 2019
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Kerala polls: Expats in UAE campaigning for candidates

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Abu Dhabi: The poll fever in Kerala appears to have gripped the expatriates from the southern Indian state in the United Arab Emirates (UAE), as they are campaigning for candidates through social media.

Nearly 1,000 village panchayats, municipalities and corporations in Kerala will be going to polls on November 2 and 5.

Non-Resident Indians in the UAE are using sites like Facebook and Twitter as well as mobile apps like WhatsApp and Instagram to seek votes for their favorite candidates in the fray, Emirates 24|7 News reported on Friday.

Dubai resident Mohammed Ali Firoz is campaigning for his mother who is contesting from Trichur. He is appealing for votes from his friends and well-wishers living in Kerala.

“In the forthcoming polls, my dear mother is contesting and I seek all your support and blessings,” Firoz posted on his Facebook page.

Some expatriates will also be visiting the constituencies to garner votes for their favourite candidates and parties.

Kerala Muslim Cultural Centre (KMCC) in Delhi is making arrangements to bring about 200 expatriates to Kerala’s Malappuram city on October 29.

“This is an important election for expatriates and their families back home. We appeal to expatriates to use their voting rights to preserve secularism and religious harmony back home,” Ibrahim Mulchandi, general secretary of KMCC, said.

On November 2, the polls would be held in the districts of Thiruvananthapuram, Kollam, Idukki, Kozhikode, Kannur, Wayanad and Kasargode while on November 5, the election would be held in Kottayam, Pathanamthitta, Alappuzha, Ernakulam, Thrissur, Palakkad and Malappuram districts.

The polls would be for 21,871 seats in 941 village, 152 blocks and 14 district panchayats besides 86 municipalities and six corporations. The last date for nominations’ withdrawal would be October 17.

Over 2.50 crore voters would exercise their franchise at 35,000 polling booths.

(IANS)

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India’s Chandrayaan-2 on Course to Moon

The Indian space agency said the major activities include Earth-bound manoeuvres, the trans-lunar insertion, lunar-bound manoeuvres, Vikram’s separation from Chandrayaan-2 and touch down on the Moon’s South Pole

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India, Spacecraft, Moon
A spectator holds an Indian flag after a mission of Indian Space Research Organization's Chandrayaan-2, with the Geosynchronous Satellite Launch Vehicle on board was called back because of a technical snag in Sriharikota, India, July 15, 2019. VOA

The Indian space agency on Tuesday completed successfully the crucial orbit manoeuvre and put the Chandrayaan-2 spacecraft into the lunar orbit.

According to Indian Space Research Organisation (ISRO), the Lunar Orbit Insertion (LOI) was completed successfully at 9.02 a.m. as planned using the onboard propulsion system. All the systems of Chandrayaan-2 are healthy.

“The duration of manoeuvre was 1,738 seconds. With this, Chandrayaan-2 was successfully inserted into a lunar orbit. The orbit achieved is 114km X 18,072km,” the ISRO said.

Following this, a series of orbit manoeuvres will be performed on Chandrayaan-2 spacecraft to enable it to enter its final orbit passing over the lunar poles at a distance of about 100 km from the Moon’s surface.

Subsequently, the lander — Vikram — will separate from the Orbiter and enter into a 100km X 30km orbit around the Moon.

“Then, it will perform a series of complex braking manoeuvres to soft land in the South Polar region of the Moon on September 7, 2019,” ISRO said.

NASA
Earth’s view from moon’s surface. Pixabay

The health of the spacecraft is being continuously monitored from the Mission Operations Complex (MOX) at ISRO Telemetry, Tracking and Command Network (ISTRAC) in Bengaluru with support from Indian Deep Space Network (IDSN) antennas at Bylalu, near the Karnataka capital.

The next Lunar bound orbit manoeuvre is scheduled on Wednesday between 12.30-1.30 p.m.

On July 22, the Chandrayaan-2 was injected into an elliptical orbit of 170X45,475 km by India’s heavy lift rocket Geosynchronous Satellite Launch Vehicle-Mark III (GSLV Mk III) in a text book style.

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The spacecraft comprises three segments – the Orbiter (weighing 2,379 kg, eight payloads), the lander ‘Vikram’ (1,471 kg, four payloads) and rover ‘Pragyan’ (27 kg, two payloads).

The Indian space agency said the major activities include Earth-bound manoeuvres, the trans-lunar insertion, lunar-bound manoeuvres, Vikram’s separation from Chandrayaan-2 and touch down on the Moon’s South Pole. (IANS)