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Mayapuri residents tested for radiation
New Delhi, April 16 (IANS)
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Published on 16 Apr. 2010 11:19 PM IST
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Thirteen people underwent medical examinations at the Institute of Nuclear Medicine and Allied Sciences (INMAS) in New Delhi Friday to check whether they have been exposed to harmful radiations, an INMAS official told IANS.
The check-ups were conducted on the residents of the west Delhi locality of Mayapuri where cobalt-60 radiation exposure cases were first reported April 8. Policemen who were working on the case also were tested.
“Blood count of the person is important in such cases. The blood samples have been taken and results are yet to come. More residents from around the scrap market would be monitored tomorrow,” the official said.
Deputy Commissioner of Police (West Delhi) Sharad Aggarwal told IANS that the policemen working on the case were asked to go for the check-up “as a precautionary measure on the advice of doctors since they also might have exposed themselves to the radiations.”
Eight people have so far been admitted to hospitals of the city for treatment of the radiation.
Deepak Jain, a scrap metal dealer from Mayapuri, was the first victim. He turned black after he touched the radioactive source. He had a considerably suppressed bone marrow and is hospitalised at the Indraprastha Apollo hospital.
Five of the six patients of radiation exposure admitted to the All India Institute of Medical Sciences (AIIMS) are showing signs of improvement, the hospital authorities said. One patient continues to have low blood cell count and is being closely monitored by a team of doctors.
Delhi Police to buy radiation meters
After having been caught unprepared during the radioactive Cobalt 60 exposure in the capital that affected seven people, the Delhi Police is now procuring sophisticated devices to monitor radiation.
“We are procuring four radiation meters that can detect radioactive material. A tender has been issued in this regard,” Delhi Police spokesman Rajan Bhagat said Friday.
The tender was issued to manufacturers and authorised distributors in both public and private sector.
Foreign companies can participate through their India-based agents.
“The equipment is to be purchased within 60 days from the date of contract,” according to the tender.
The first radioactive exposure took place in Mayapuri in West Delhi April 8 and five people suffered burn-like injuries after coming in contact with the radioactive material in the scrap market.
Scientists from the Bhabha Atomic Research Centre, Mumbai, rushed to the capital the same day to probe the incident. Experts suspected that the radioactive substance was Cobalt-60.
Scrap metal dealer Deepak Jain, the first victim of the radiation exposure whose body turned black after he touched the radioactive source, had a considerably suppressed bone marrow and is hospitalised in Indraprastha Apollo hospital.
Five other victims -- Gaurav, Rajendra Prasad, Ramjee Yadav, Ram Kalap and Himanshu Jain -- were admitted to AIIMS.
Around half a kilometre of the area was sealed by the police as a precautionary measure, and later the substance was isolated and the area cordoned off.
Nearly a week after the first source of radiation, another Cobalt 60 source was found in the same scrap market April 13. The source which was 400 metres from the initial radiation exposure was located and isolated.
A seventh victim, Babulal, exposed to radiation, was hospitalised in AIIMS.
According to the latest report by AIIMS, out of the six patients, five were stable and their blood counts were normal. They were showing signs of improvement.
But one patient continues to have low blood cell counts. He developed mild fever and is being monitored closely by a team of doctors.

 
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