‘Cobalt-60 could have come from outside India’ | delhi | Hindustan Times
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‘Cobalt-60 could have come from outside India’

delhi Updated: Apr 13, 2010 23:14 IST
Avishek G Dastidar

Investigators and scientists who have been trying to track down the source of Cobalt 60 the radioactive material that was found at a scrap shop in Mayapuri, are almost certain that the origin of the material was outside India—either China or some other developed country.

India does not manufacture the kind of Cobalt material they found—cobalt wires—at scrap dealer Deepak Jain’s shop on Friday.

Sources said that has made the investigators believe that the machine must have been imported.

“The machine could have been manufactured in some developed country and have come to any developing country from where it traveled to India as scrap,” said an official.

Another deduction so far has been the ruling out of the possibility of pilferage from any hospital, they said.

“Medical instruments use cobalt plates. Only industrial instruments use cobalt wires and cobalt pencils. The material we have seized could not have been from any hospital,” said a source.

Currently, scientists at the Nuclear Power Corporation of India Limited (NPCIL) at Narora are poring over the seized material and are analysing it.

They are applying the various permutations and combinations to deduce the mystery.

Meanwhile, the Bhabha Atomic Research Centre (BARC) has issued a warning to anyone who visited Deepak Jain’s shop in the past 20 days to come forward and get themselves tested for radiation poisoning.

“Even if someone visited Deepak Jain’s shop just for a few minutes, he or she should come forward and get themselves tested because we suspect there could be more people exposed to the radiation,” said Sapnesh Kumar Malhotra, spokesman for the BARC.