World
AirAsia plane crash caused by faulty component, crew action
A faulty component and the way the pilots responded to a technical malfunction caused AirAsia Flight QZ8501 to plunge into the Java Sea in December 2014, killing all 162 people on board, Indonesian officials said on Tuesday.
 
The ill-fated plane was en route to Singapore from the Indonesian city of Surabaya on December 28, 2014, when it crashed into the Java Sea, CNN reported.
 
The plane's flight control computer had a cracked solder joint that kept malfunctioning, Indonesia's National Transport Safety Committee (NTSC) said in a report. 
 
Aircraft maintenance records found it had malfunctioned 23 times in the year before the crash, and the interval of those became shorter in the three months prior to the crash.
 
"Subsequent flight crew action resulted in inability to control the aircraft causing the aircraft to depart from the normal flight envelope and enter a prolonged stall condition that was beyond the capability of the flight crew to recover," the report said.
 
The investigation, a joint effort involving Australian, French, Singaporean and Malaysian authorities, points to weaknesses in pilot training, which heavily emphasises on take off and landing, an aviation expert said.
 
Preliminary findings from the NTSC earlier this year said roughly 35 minutes into the two hour flight, the pilot asked air traffic control for permission to climb to avoid stormy weather.
 
The plane went from cruising at 32,000 feet, ascending steeply to 37,400 in about 30 seconds -- something commercial planes are not designed to do. It may have been climbing at a rate twice as fast as it could and should.
 
Minutes later, the plane disappeared from radar.
 
Although the area was experiencing turbulent weather patterns, seven other planes flying nearby landed safely.
 
Malaysia-based AirAsia did not have the clearance to fly the route on that particular day.
 
Disclaimer: Information, facts or opinions expressed in this news article are presented as sourced from IANS and do not reflect views of Moneylife and hence Moneylife is not responsible or liable for the same. As a source and news provider, IANS is responsible for accuracy, completeness, suitability and validity of any information in this article.

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Man tweets about ailing father to railways, Prabhu helps
A man who tweeted to Railway Minister Suresh Prabhu seeking help to deboard his father, suffering from paralysis, was pleasantly surprised to find assistance waiting for him on his arrival at a Rajasthan station.
 
Pankaj Jain, a businessman born in Rajasthan but now settled in Karnataka, wanted to deboard the Yeshwantpura-Bikaner Express train at the Merta Road railway station. But he faced a problem as the train halted for a mere five minutes there.
 
"I was concerned about how I will manage to get my father and luggage down from my coach in five minutes. My mother and sister were also travelling with me. One of my friends suggested that I should tweet to the Indian Railways," Jain told IANS on Monday.
 
On Saturday, he tweeted to the Indian Railways and also tagged Prabhu.
 
"Within a few minutes, I got a reply from the railways. I was asked to send my coach and PNR number. Soon, I got a reply which said I won't face any problems," Jain said.
 
To his utter surprise, a railway official told him that help for him has been organised at the Merta Road station.
 
"I could not believe it. The station master, a porter and other staff waited for us at the station with a wheelchair," he said, adding the train halted for nearly 10 minutes there.
 
"It was a total surprise for me that a tweet requesting help for my ailing father would result in fast and helpful service at the station in Rajasthan," an elated Jain added.
 
Disclaimer: Information, facts or opinions expressed in this news article are presented as sourced from IANS and do not reflect views of Moneylife and hence Moneylife is not responsible or liable for the same. As a source and news provider, IANS is responsible for accuracy, completeness, suitability and validity of any information in this article.

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India calls for Security Council action against terrorist outfits
India has called upon the UN Security Council to act decisively against the widening arc of terrorism that has struck Paris, Beirut and Syria while the links between the Islamic State and extremists in Afghanistan and elsewhere are tightening.
 
"We urge the Security Council to act against this threat to international peace and security with a sense of urgency and within a defined time-frame," India's Permanent Representative Asoke Kumar Mukerji told the UN General Assembly Monday during a debate on the situation in Afghanistan.
 
"The first step the Council should undertake is to strengthen the Council's Sanctions Regime structure, in order to effectively impose and implement the restrictions placed on the listed terrorist organisations, so as to deny them sanctuaries and safe haven," he said.
 
The Security Council's failure to act against Pakistan for providing a sanctuary for anti-India terrorists and for releasing on bail Lashkar-e-Taiba's 2008 Mumbai attack mastermind Zaki-ur-Rehman Lakhvi has been a sore point for India.
 
The growing violence in Afghanistan between the Taliban and the Islamic State along with its affiliates was an "alarming" development, he said, citing Secretary General Ban Ki-moon's report on the situation in that nation.
 
In particular he drew attention to Ban's report that most of the Islamic State-affiliated fighters in Afghanistan are made up mostly of "disaffected former members of the Afghan Taliban, Tehrik-e-Taliban Pakistan, or groups previously associated with Al-Qaeda."
 
In view of these developments and the rising tide of terrorist violence around the world, the international community should rethink the time table for troop withdrawal from Afghanistan, Mukerji said.
 
In a reversal of policy, President Barack Obama announced in October that the United States will keep its troop strength at 9,800 through next year, but will reduce it to about 5,500 by the time he leaves office in January 2017.
 
Calling India "Afghanistan's first strategic partner", Mukerji spoke of the close bilateral ties between the two nations and expressed regret over restrictions on transit.
 
"Afghanistan will be able to achieve its optimal economic potential only if it is allowed freedom of transit to major markets in South Asia," he said. Without naming Pakistan, he added, "We regret that this freedom continues to be denied to Afghanistan." Islamabad has blocked direct access to India for trucks bringing Afghanistan's exports.
 
"India has opened its markets to all Afghan exports, and is willing to receive Afghan trucks on its territory," Mukerji said. "India remains committed to greater regional integration, and is open to join and support all such regional initiatives, including the expansion of the Afghan Pakistan Trade and Transit Agreement."
 
Disclaimer: Information, facts or opinions expressed in this news article are presented as sourced from IANS and do not reflect views of Moneylife and hence Moneylife is not responsible or liable for the same. As a source and news provider, IANS is responsible for accuracy, completeness, suitability and validity of any information in this article.

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