Current Affairs, News & Facts of 13 Feb 2015

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  • Danish photographer Mads Nissen wins World Press Photo of the year 2014 for his image depicting gay couple during an intimate moment in St Petersburg, Russia. 
    • The annual prize, into its 58th edition, carries a cash prize of 10,000 euros.
    • The photo also won first prize in the Contemporary Issues category.
    • Conservative Russia treats the LGBT people (lesbian, gay, bisexual or transgender) unfairly and this Sexual minorities often has to suffer legal and social discrimination, harassment, and even violent hate-crime attacks from religious and nationalistic groups.
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  • West toils hard with Russia to reach another ceasefire in Ukraine; ensues fragile peace beginning February 15
    • The leaders of Russia, Ukraine, Germany and France reached the ceasefire after a marathon negotiation in Belarus.
    • The major takeaway of the peace deal includes weapon withdrawals and prisoner exchanges, but a lot of key issues remain unsettled.
    • Ukraine gets to regain the control of breakaway eastern regions and its border with Russia, While Russia reclaims the power to keep Ukraine from ever becoming part of NATO.
    • Sagging Russian economy due to Western sanctions has played a key role in getting Russia to agree to the peace agreement.
    • However, There's many a slip between cup and the lip here, as any untoward incident from either side can sabotage the breakthrough.
    • Thousands of people have died in almost a year of fighting in the region.
    • The peace accord is very similar to the ceasefire agreed last September, which came apart within few days.
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  • Gurpreet Singh, Indian American researcher at Kansas State University (KSU), bags $500,000 National Science Foundation CAREER award for his research on nanosheets. - read more cat
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  • National Legal Services Authority (Nalsa) to organize Lok Adalats through out the country Once in every Month to help clear the judiciary bottleneck. 
    • The series, to handle different subjects every month, will kickstart with clearing cheque bounce and other bank recovery matters on February 14.
    • The aim is to reduce pendency as well as prevent additional litigation flooding the courts, where settlements are possible.
    • These Lok Adalats will be held across the country in the Supreme Court, the High Courts, District Courts and the Taluk level Courts.
    • Once so disposed of by settlement, there will be no further appeal in these cases.
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  • Centre has decided to scrap 125 Toll Plazas in the country to ensure smooth and hassle free ride for the public. - read more cat
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  • Microsoft acquires popular calendar apps maker 'Sunrise' for $100 million.
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2nd Aug

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