Short Eats: May 25

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May 25 – Short Eats – a roundup of small tasty bites of Indian news straight from the nation’s dailies.

Banana Fiber a New Textile Commodity
Weavers near Chennai have developed a new product made from Banana fiber, in association with the National Research Centre for Banana. The new textile is said to be suitable for wear, is absorbent and said to be cool to wear. They remain odorless, resist shrinkage and fading and are inexpensive. The best fabric is said to be a mix of 60 percent cotton and 40 percent banana.

Annual Monsoon Arrives on Kerala Coast
The annual India monsoon has just arrived on the coast of Kerala on Saturday, three days earlier than expected. Five centimeters of rain fell in 24 hours. The monsoon moves slowly east, with Chennai on the southeast coast being the last to receive rainfall about a month after the west coast.

Mumbai Monsoon and Flood Alerts
Mumbai will experience high tides during the new moon on May 26, June 25, July 24 and August 21 and if heavy monsoonal rain occurs on these days, flooding of up to 25 feet of water could occur, not receding until the next high tide. Travelers to Mumbai are advised to try and avoid meetings around these dates.

Indian Monkeys Known to Diet If Fat
Monkeys have been proven to diet if fat, recent research has proven. If having piled on the kilos, a diet of figs and an avoidance of protein-rich foods such as insects is undertaken. An apparent ability to self regulate daily protein intake has been observed in Darwinian suggestions that both humans and monkeys share this trait with a common ancestor.

WSJ Printing in Mumbai and Delhi
The Wall Street Journal has commenced printing Indian editions in Mumbai and Delhi in an agreement with the Indian Express Group.

World Bank Funding Slum Electricity Provision
Electricity in Indian slums, much of which is stolen from the national grid by illegally tapping overhead lines or railway tracks, is to receive funding from the World Bank to legitimize and improve supply. RInfra, a state electricity supplier, is working with the bank to upgrade facilities, install meters and regulate power strength as they seek to break the traditional slumlords hold on power distribution in affected areas.

Female MP’s Pass 10% for the First Time
India’s recent elections returned a record 10 percent of female MP’s, with 61 women elected. Legislation to empower women in rural areas has been mooted for some time and it is expected these MP’s will rally together to increase the chances of enhancing women’s rights in the country.

Baby Boy with Heart Born Outside of Body in Gujarat Operated On
An infant born with Ectopia Cordis Totalis, a condition in which the heart develops externally from the body has been operated on with the organ replaced back inside an expanding chest cavity. Doctors are waiting to see if the body will accept the organ, which at present appears to be beating normally.

1873 Letter Mailed from Boston to Calcutta Expected to Fetch US$1 million
A letter mailed by an ice exporter in Boston to his office in Calcutta, including the first US bi-color stamps (featuring Abraham Lincoln) is expected to fetch US$1 million at auction in New York next month. Ice was amongst the United States’ first exports to India, with Ice Houses established in Calcutta, Bombay and Madras in the 19th century. Ice House Street in Central, Hong Kong is also named after a storage facility set up by the same Boston merchant.

Sensex has Best Week in 17 Years as Markets Rebound
Mumbai’s benchmark Sensex index had its best week in 17 years as investors piled into Indian stocks, with a 14 percent gain in the past week. The run also extended Sensex’s bull run to a straight eleventh consecutive weekly gain, while the Rupee also continued its gains and is now at 47 to the US dollar.

India Recruitment Booming
Global Recruitment firm Antal International have just issued a report stating that 47 percent of Indian businesses said they are currently hiring at managerial level, and 48 percent expect to hire additional mangers during the next quarter.