In a move that could jeopardise the careers of hundreds of science students in Delhi University (DU), the Atomic Energy Regulatory Board (AERB) has withdrawn permission to the university to use any radioactive source in its labs, as it failed to submit its reply on the radiation exposure incident at Mayapuri scrap yard within the stipulated period.
This is for the first time such an action has been taken against any educational institution in the country, the Board said.
AERB Chairman S.S. Bajaj said, “DU sought more time but it was decided decided not to extend the time period. It was important some punitive action was taken against the varsity.”
DU Vice Chancellor Deepak Pental said, “It is a matter of concern since a large number of students will get affected. Once I go through the letters, we’ll write to AERB stating our concerns about the careers of the students.”
Exposure to radioactive material Cobalt-60 in the scrap market in Mayapuri, which was sold off by DU’s Chemistry department, had led to the death of one person and injuries to 10 others in Delhi this April. Following the incident, AERB had suspended the use of radioactive source in the university labs and asked it to submit a reply to the Board on the incident. On Wednesday, HT had reported how the Delhi Police had to suspend their investigation due to non-submission of report by the three-member fact-finding committee constituted by the varsity.