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DU panel to probe disposal of Cobalt-60 from campus

Delhi University has constituted a committee headed by a retired professor to probe the disposal of radioactive material Cobalt-60 from its campus, with a report expected in a month`s time.



New Delhi: Delhi University has constituted a
committee headed by a retired professor to probe the disposal
of radioactive material Cobalt-60 from its campus, with a
report expected in a month`s time.

The three-member committee will "inquire into the
disposal of gamma cell model 220, AECL from the Department of
Chemistry," the University said in a statement today.

The committee is headed by S C Pancholi, retired
professor from Department of Physics and Astrophysics, of DU
and has as its members scientists from the Institute of
Nuclear Medicine and Allied Science (INMAS) and Bhabha Atomic
Research Centre (BARC).

Subhash Khushu, Divisional of Radiological Imaging and
Biomedical Engineering, INMAS, and N C Goomer, Head, Regional
Centre for Radiopharmaceuticals, BARC, are also on the panel
which will investigate the fiasco that has claimed one life
and injured six others in New Delhi.

Vice-Chancellor Deepak Pental had earlier proposed the
name of Dr Dwarkanath as a member of the panel, but he was
replaced by Khushu after protests and allegations that he was
close to V S Parmar, the Head of Chemistry Department.

The committee is expected to submit its report or
recommendations within one month, the statement said.

The Delhi University Teachers Association, meanwhile,
continued to protest the appointment of any committee by the
Vice Chancellor, arguing that it would be an "eyewash".

DUTA members held a demonstration at the campus today
demanding removal of the VC, and a visitorial inquiry into the
episode. They also alleged the head of the appointed committee
"was close" to the Vice-Chancellor.

"We will not accept any committee established by the VC.
For any fair probe, he should be removed," said Aditya Misra,
President, DUTA.

In a related development, the administration has notified
suspension of all activity involving use of radiation sources
in the University and has furnished the details of activities
related to radioactive sources and radioisotopes in various
departments to the Atomic Energy Regulatory Board.

"The University has also requested AERB to get the safety
status of all the departments checked and inform the
University in any action is required," it said.

The VC earlier accepted "moral responsibility" and
apologised for the incident but a section of University
teachers and students have said this was not enough.

PTI

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