T.C. Narendran, internationally known insect taxonomist and recipient of the E.K. Janaki Ammal National Award of the Ministry of Environment and Forests, died of a heart attack here on Tuesday. He was 69.
An Emeritus Professor, he is survived by wife and two children. He was currently working as coordinator of the All India Coordinated Project on Taxonomy and Capacity Building (hymenoptera) at the Zoological Survey of India here after retiring as Professor from the Department of Zoology of the University of Calicut.
His research contributions to the science of taxonomy have been substantial in realising the fauna diversity of the parasitic hymenoptera not only of the Indian region but also of other places outside the country.
He was instrumental in stimulating interest in study of, and research in, taxonomy and pursued research at prestigious research stations such as the Natural History Museum, London; and the Smithsonian Institution, Washington, U.S. He discovered and described 1,043 new species of insects, which represent nearly 1.7 per cent of the insect diversity known from India, and published 380 research papers.
Besides E.K. Janaki Ammal National Award, Prof. Narendra was recipient of the Swadeshi Shastrapuraskaram in 2008, UGC postgraduate fellowship for research at Budapest, Hungary, in 1994; Ernst Mayr grant of Harvard University; and Royal Society, London, grant for research at Natural History Museum, London. A life fellow of the Indian Academy of Entomology, Chennai, Prof. Narendran’s peers have honoured him by naming 25 taxa after him.