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Insights Daily Current Events, 17 August 2015

Insights Daily Current Events, 17 August 2015


‘Tiny bit’ found in India too

Entomologists have found the world’s smallest flying insect, a fairyfly that goes by the name Kikiki huna, in Tamil Nadu.

  • With this, India has joined the club of countries that are home to this unique insect.

kikiki huna


  • The insect measures aboout 0.16 mm.
  • It is a multicellular organism that is smaller than single-celled organisms.
  • The insect’s functions are yet to be determined.
  • Kikiki was first discovered in Trinidad around 20 years ago and later in Hawaii. It has also been found in Australia and Argentina.
  • It derives its name from Hawaiian which means ‘tiny bit’.
  • Like all fairyflies, Kikiki huna lays its eggs in the eggs of other insects. The entire life stage is passed in the single egg, from which it emerges as an adult.

Sources: The Hindu.

Will complete Polavaram by 2018, says Naidu

Chief Minister of Andhra Pradesh N. Chandrabbau Naidu recently announced that the government was keen on completing the Polavaram project before 2018 and focus would be on completion of all pending irrigation projects in a phased manner.

  • The multi-purpose Indira Sagar (Polavaram) project has been rechristened in June as Polavaram irrigation project.

polavaram dam map site

About the project:

  • Polavaram Project is a multi-purpose irrigation project which has been accorded national project status by the central government.
  • This dam across the Godavari River is under construction located in West Godavari District and East Godavari District in Andhra Pradesh state and its reservoir spreads in parts of Chhattisgarh and Orissa States also.
  • The project is multipurpose major terminal reservoir project on river Godavari for development of Irrigation, Hydropower and drinking water facilities to East Godavari, Vishakhapatnam, West Godavari and Krishna districts of Andhra Pradesh.
  • The project is likely to displace over 1.88 lakh people across 222 villages and so far, 1,730 persons in six villages have been rehabilitated by the government.

Sources: The Hindu.

Kalam award for ISRO scientist

Chief Minister of Tamil Nadu Jayalalithaa, recently presented the first APJ Abdul Kalam award to Indian Space Research Organisation (ISRO) scientist N. Valarmathi, who led the team that successfully launched Radar Imaging Satellite RISAT-1 in 2012.

  • The award was announced by Ms. Jayalalithaa in memory of former President A.P.J. Abdul Kalam.
  • The award carries a certificate, a cheque for Rs. 5 lakh and an eight-gram gold coin.

Radar Imaging Satellite 1, or RISAT-1, is an Indian remote sensing satellite which was built and is operated by the Indian Space Research Organisation (ISRO). A technologically superior imaging satellite, RISAT-1 had instruments such as the Synthetic Aperture Radar that could look through clouds and take images even during the night. It provides all-weather surveillance using synthetic aperture radars (SAR).

Sources: The Hindu, Wiki.

Tiruchi airport gets e-tourist visa system

The Tiruchi International Airport has become one of the gateways for foreign tourists entering the country with e-tourist visas, an online visa issue system introduced by the Union government.

  • Tiruchi is now one of the 16 designated airports in the country, which have been approved as entry points for foreigners arriving in the country with e-tourist visas.
  • Tourists from 113 countries, including Australia, Brazil, Canada, France, Georgia, Germany, Indonesia, Israel, Japan, Mauritius, Mexico, New Zealand, Philippines, Russia, Singapore, Sri Lanka, Thailand, Malaysia, Spain, Portugal, Seychelles, The Netherlands, Sweden and United Kingdom, could use the e-tourist visa facility.
  • The Airports Authority of India, the Bureau of Immigration and the National Informatics Centre have created the necessary infrastructure at the Tiruchi airport for the introduction of the system. Dedicated counters and equipment, including passport readers, bio-metric capture machines, web cameras and computers have been installed for the purpose.

About the e –tourist visa scheme:

  • India had last year launched e-tourist visa facility (which was earlier called ‘tourist visa on arrival enabled by electronic travel authorisation’).
  • Under the e-visa scheme, an applicant receives an email authorising him or her to travel to India after it is approved and he or she can travel with a print-out of this authorisation. On arrival, the visitor has to present the authorisation to the immigration authorities who would then stamp the entry into the country.
  • The number of foreign tourists availing themselves of the e-tourist visa facility has increased by over 700% in May, 2015 as compared to the same period last year.
  • The visas would have a validity of 30 days from the date of arrival. Biometric details of the applicant will be mandatorily captured on arrival in India. The facility can be availed for a maximum of two visits to the country in a calendar year.

Who is not eligible?

  • Not available to Diplomatic/Official Passport Holders.
  • Not available to individuals endorsed on Parent’s/Spouse’s Passport i.e. each individual should have a separate passport.
  • Not available to International Travel Document Holders.

Sources: The Hindu, PIB.

New global diamond standard hailed

A new set of international guidelines aimed at increasing the confidence of consumers when purchasing diamonds has been welcomed by a number of Indian diamond and jewellery industry organizations.

  • Diamond organizations in India have praised the release of ISO International Standard 18323: Jewellery – Consumer confidence in the diamond industry.


  • These guidelines provide a series of definitions, which aim to provide further clarity for traders and maintain consumer confidence in the diamond industry as a whole. There are also guidelines on the nomenclature that should be used by those involved in the buying and selling of diamonds.
  • The ISO ruling defines a diamond as something that was ‘crated by nature.’.
  • The ISO standard sets out descriptions for synthetic diamonds plainly and precisely which is a critical issue for the diamonds business. It also bars the usage of deceptive terms such as ‘cultured’ and ‘cultivated’, ‘real’, ‘precious’ and ‘gem’ to describe any synthetic diamond.
  • It also states, brand names and manufacturers’ names combined with the word ‘diamond’ are insufficient means of disclosure when applied to synthetic diamonds.

Sources: The Hindu.

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