Radiation 60 times high from normal in Kerala; far above normal in U’khand, Odisha

Saturday, Oct 18, 2014,19:55 IST By metrovaartha A A A

A team of scientists studying radiation presence in India, has found that several parts of Uttarakhand, Odisha and Kerala have more than normal presence of radiation.
Normally the natural radiation level is 50 nanogray (nGy) per hour but in Kerala it was found maximum at 3000 nGy per hour while in Odisha it was maximum 1600 nGy per hour. In Uttarakhand, it was maximum 400 nanogray per hour.
The team, working under HNB University’s Shri Ram Tirth (SRT) campus Director Prof R C Ramola, is part of the joint initiative of India, China, Japan, Thailand and South Korea to preapare the first-ever radiation presence data of Asian nations.
Such data is available for countries in European and American continents only so far.
The SRT team found above normal presence of radiation in Odisha’s Chhattarpur region, Kerala’s Western coast and Uttarakhand’s Uttarkashi, Budha Kedar and Guptkashi region,
In Odisha and Kerala, high quantity of Thorium was found in Monazite sand while in Uttarakhand, the Granite rocks had more radiation due to presence of Uranium.
The increased radiation could cause various types of cancer, brain tumours, cataract and skin diseases, according to Prof Ramola.
So far, despite their large population, the Asian countries did not have a radiation presence data due to which the guidelines issued for radiation safety and related issues were based on nations in continents of America and Europe.
But now the radiation data of India and other Asian nations have been prepared and submitted to the UN scientific committee on effects of radiation, Prof Ramola said.
Prof Ramola, along with two other scientists of SRT campus, Mukesh Bijalwan and Manju Lata Yadav, recently participated in the international conference on environmental radiation protection held at Japan’s Hirosaki city and shared their findings with other experts.
Now, under the Nuclear Power Department, a team from Garhwal university’s SRT campus would soon launch a survey to measure the uranium presence in the natural water sources of Uttarakhand. It was hoped that it could lead the scientists to uranium reserves as well, Prof Ramola said.