Event Diary: 28th January, 2012
NASA’s Kepler discovered 11 new solar systems
NASA’s satellite Kepler, which was launched in March 2009, has recently discovered 26 new planets spread around 11 solar systems. Kepler has so far discovered more than 60 planets in just 2 years, before this mission, some 500 exoplanets were known, but now there are around 2,300 planet candidates discovered in addition to the above mentioned planets.
Kepler is monitoring more than 150,000 stars in the constellations Cygnus and Lyra.
Turf war between UIDAI and NPR ended
The Unique Identification Authority of India(UIDAI) which functions under the Planning Commission, has got its mandate extended to collect the biometric data of around 40 crore people in 16 states under its Aadhar scheme. It has also been alloted an additional 5,791 crore for the purpose.
While the National Population Register(NPR) which functions under the Home Ministry has been asked to use the biometric data provided by the UIDAI. NPR will continue to collect its data in other states as earlier through the Registrar-General of India.
UIDAI is a voluntary scheme for citizens while the NPR is mandatory, if a resident is already enrolled with UIDAI, then he can only give his Aadhaar number to the NPR. If there is any discrepancies among both the data, then NPR information would prevail.
Workers go on rampage in Yaman
Yaman is a small enclave near Puducherry in Andhra Pradesh, where workers of Regency Ceramics (the biggest industry in Yanam, situated 30km from Kakinada) went on rampage after their union leader M.S.Murali Mohan was killed in police action outside the factory. The workers killed K.C.Chandrasekhar, President of the factory and also set ablaze as many as 50 lorries and 10 buses. It is a consequence of the trouble being brewed in the factory since January, 2012 when more than 800 contract workers started protesting for increase in their wages and regularization of their work.
Olympics panel has no plans to drop Dow
Even after the resignation of Meredith Alexander as member of the commission for a sustainable London 2012 over the Bhopal Gas leak issue, the organizers of the London 2012 Olympics have made it clear that they have no plans of dropping Dow Chemicals as its sponsor.
India ranks 1st in maximum toxic air survey
According to a recent survey conducted by the Yale Center of Environmental Law and Policy and Columbia’s Center for International Earth Science Information Network, India holds the very last rank among 132 nations in terms of air quality with regard to its effect on human health.
The two universities have been their Environment Performance Index ranking every 2 years since 2006.
India scored only 3.73 on a scale of 100. This ranking is a part of a wider study to index the nations of the world based on their overall environmental performance, which takes 22 indicators in account.
Bottom 5 rankings:
Nepal, Pakistan, China, Bangladesh (score: 13.66), India. (South Asian regions)
This study shows Iraq, Turkmenistan and Uzbekistan also as environmental laggards, while the European nations of Switzerland, Norway and Latvia capture the top spots.
This index report was presented at the World Economic Forum currently taking place in Davos.