Greenpeace again to survey Mayapuri scrap market

May 18th, 2010 - 6:29 pm ICT by IANS  

New Delhi, May 18 (IANS) Environmental NGO Greenpeace said it will once again conduct a survey in Delhi’s Mayapuri scrap yard Wednesday after its team found radiation levels in the area very high last week.
“Over the last few days, a team from the Atomic Energy Regulatory Board (AERB), the National Disaster Response Force of the National Disaster Management Authority (NDMA), the Bhabha Atomic Research Centre (BARC) and the Narora Atomic Power Station has been decontaminating the Mayapuri area,” a Greenpeace statement said.

“Bringing radiation levels to normal background levels involves detailed handling, checks and re-checks. We will check the Mayapuri scrap market area again on Wednesday and then discuss the way forward,” it added.

On Friday, Greenpeace in its investigation in the area found that it was “not a safe zone for human beings”.

“The investigation identified hotspots with more than 5,000 times natural background radiation,” Jan Vande Putte, a radiation expert from Greenpeace, said.

The Greenpeace team observed that it was a matter of concern that the six identified hotspots remained despite AERB having declared the area safe.

After the investigation, a team of experts from the AERB and the BARC visited Mayapuri for the decontamination process.

Police said the source of the radiation leak last month was a radioactive gamma cell containing Cobalt-60, auctioned as scrap by Delhi University’s chemistry department two months ago.

One victim died while six people exposed to the radioactive Cobalt-60 are still undergoing anti-radiation treatment in a hospital.

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