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We will ensure that there are no loopholes in the coastal security system: Rajnath

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Panaji: The National Democratic Alliance (NDA) government wants to ensure a foolproof coastal security system for the country, union Home Minister Rajnath Singh said here on Monday.

STATEN ISLAND, New York (Aug. 14, 2003)--Seaman Operations Specialist Jason Dailey, sector operator at the Vessel Traffic Center at Coast Guard Activities New York, Staten Island, N.Y. monitors  vessel traffic in the New York Harbor before the blackout darkened the northeast Aug. 14, 2003.  Unlike the many city traffic signals that went out, the VTC had back-up generators and battery power that helped harbor traffic continue to flow freely through the duration of the blackout.  USCG photo PA2 Mike Hvozda

The minister said that senior members of parliament, who are on the parliamentary consultative committee attached to the home ministry, had given suggestions on the issue and his ministry will give these serious thought and take a call on the same.

Rajnath Singh was talking to reporters here after chairing a meeting of the parliamentary consultative committee attached to the union home ministry to discuss coastal security.

Minister of State for Home Kiren Rijuju was also present on the occasion.

“Today (Monday), we had a meeting of the parliamentary committee on coastal-related issues. Our government wants a foolproof coastal security system,” the home minister said.

“Our senior members of parliament gave suggestions and our home ministry will take a call on them after giving it a serious thought,” Rajnath Singh added.

He pointed out that to strengthen the coastal security, one must first consider the country’s coastline as “vulnerable and then work towards plugging the gaps”.

“We should consider that all of our coastline is vulnerable. It is not, but we should consider it that way,” Rajnath Singh said.

“We have ensured coastal security to a large extent, but we want to ensure no loopholes anywhere. Whatever loopholes are there, we will decide on plugging them,” he added.

The Indian mainland has a coastline of approximately 5,700 km. If one considers the coastline of island territories, the Indian coastline adds up to around 7,500 km.

The committee also discussed issues related to maritime security, including the security apparatus on the coast, offshore and high seas.

Rajnath Singh also said that the national committee on strengthening maritime and coastal security will review timely implementation of various proposals and key issues/ matters pertaining to maritime and coastal security.

He also underscored the need for effective coordination among central ministries and agencies and state governments and union territories having a coastline.

Apart from the two central ministers, the meeting was also attended by Nationalist Congress Party chief Sharad Pawar, union home secretary L.C. Goyal and other senior officials of the MHA and Indian Coast Guard.

(IANS)

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Diesel Exhaust Converted Into Ink by Indian Innovators To Battle Air Pollution

Supervised by young engineers, workers at the start-up company Chakr Innovation in New Delhi cut and weld sheets of metal to make devices that will capture black plumes of smoke from diesel generators and convert it into ink.

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representational image. VOA

Supervised by young engineers, workers at the start-up company Chakr Innovation in New Delhi cut and weld sheets of metal to make devices that will capture black plumes of smoke from diesel generators and convert it into ink.

In a cabin, young engineers pore over drawings and hunch over computers as they explore more applications of the technology that they hope will aid progress in cleaning up the Indian capital’s toxic air – among the world’s dirtiest.

While the millions of cars that ply Delhi’s streets are usually blamed for the city’s deadly air pollution, another big culprit is the massive diesel generators used by industries and buildings to light up homes and offices during outages when power from the grid switches off – a frequent occurrence in summer. Installed in backyards and basements, they stay away from the public eye.

“Although vehicular emissions are the show stoppers, they are the ones which get the media attention, the silent polluters are the diesel generators,” says Arpit Dhupar, one of the three engineers who co-founded the start up.

The idea that this polluting smoke needs attention struck Dhupar three years ago as he sipped a glass of sugarcane juice at a roadside vendor and saw a wall blackened with the fumes of a diesel generator he was using.

It jolted him into joining with two others who co-founded the start-up to find a solution. Dhupar had experienced first hand the deadly impact of this pollution as he developed respiratory problems growing up in Delhi.

An Indian girls holds a banner during a protest against air pollution in New Delhi, India, Nov. 6, 2016.
An Indian girls holds a banner during a protest against air pollution in New Delhi, India, Nov. 6, 2016.

A new business

As the city’s dirty air becomes a serious health hazard for many citizens, it has turned into both a calling and a business opportunity for entrepreneurs looking at ways to improve air quality.

According to estimates, vehicles contribute 22 percent of the deadly PM 2.5 emissions in Delhi, while the share of diesel generators is about 15 percent. These emissions settle deep into the lungs, causing a host of respiratory problems.

After over two years of research and development, Chakr has begun selling devices to tap the diesel exhaust. They have been installed in 50 places, include public sector and private companies.

The technology involves cooling the exhaust in a “heat exchanger” where the tiny soot particles come together. These are then funneled into another chamber that captures 70 to 90 percent of the particulate matter. The carbon is isolated and converted into ink.

Among their first clients was one of the city’s top law firms, Jyoti Sagar Associates, which is housed in a building in Delhi’s business hub Gurgaon.

Making a contribution to minimizing the carbon footprint is a subject that is close to Sagar’s heart – his 32-year-old daughter has long suffered from the harmful effects of Delhi’s toxic air.

Motorists drive surrounded by smog, in New Delhi, India, Nov. 8, 2017.
Motorists drive surrounded by smog, in New Delhi, India, Nov. 8, 2017.

“This appealed to us straightaway, the technology is very impactful but is beautifully simple,” says Sagar. Since it could be retrofitted, it did not disrupt the day-to-day activities at the buzzing office. “Let’s be responsible. Let’s at least not leave behind a larger footprint of carbon. And if we can afford to control it, why not, it’s good for all,” he says.

At Chakr Innovation, cups, diaries and paper bags printed with the ink made from the exhaust serve as constant reminders of the amount of carbon emissions that would have escaped into the atmosphere.

There has been a lot of focus on improving Delhi’s air by reducing vehicular pollution and making more stringent norms for manufacturers, but the same has not happened for diesel generators. Although there are efforts to penalize businesses that dirty the atmosphere, this often prompts them to find ways to get around the norms.

Also Read: Exposure to Traffic-Related Pollution Poses Threat of Asthma in Kids

Tushar Mathur who joined the start up after working for ten years in the corporate sector feels converting smoke into ink is a viable solution. “Here is a technology which is completely sustainable, a win-win between businesses and environment,” says Mathur. (VOA)