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Chennai: Construction of four India designed 700 MW pressurized heavy water reactors (PHWR) are progressing at a quick pace and the first one is expected to go on stream end 2016 or early 2017, said senior officials of Nuclear Power Corporation of India Ltd (NPCIL).
The NPCIL is building two 700 MW atomic power plants each at Kakrapar Atomic Power Station (KAPS) in Gujarat and Rajasthan Atomic Power Station (RAPS).
For NPCIL that has been building 220 MW and 540 MW pressurised heavy water reactors (PHWRs), it is a major jump to go in for 700 MW PHWRs.
“It is the first of its kind reactor in the country,” Lokesh Kumar, project director for the third and fourth units at KAPS told IANS over phone from Kakrapar in Gujarat on Monday.
The Atomic Energy Regulatory Board (AERB), the sectoral regulator, is carefully poring over the reports submitted by the units before according its sanction.
NPCIL has two units of 220 MW each at KAPS which are operating successfully.
It is the third unit at KAPS with a capacity of 700 MW that is expected to go operational first out of the four under construction.
“We are the torch bearers for this kind of reactor in the country now. Once the first unit goes on stream, it will be easy for other three,” Kumar said.
Queried about the project status, he said: “We are in a crucial stage. The construction work is at its peak. We have energised the start-up transformer. The power system is ready for the unit that would go on stream.”
According to him, work on commissioning of the other systems have begun while the civil construction work is nearing completion.
“This week we will start the installation of the reactor coolant channel. The coolant channel installation work will be over in two months time. Nuclear piping work has begun in the two units,” Kumar said.
He said stator installation work on the turbine will begin this week.
“We plan to start unit 3 by the end of 2016 or early 2017. Then commissioning of unit 4 would happen,” Kumar said.
Concrete was first poured in November 2010 for the 3rd unit at KAPS and in March 2011 for the fourth unit.
Though the first unit was expected to go on stream in 2015, owing to erratic supply of components the progress of work got delayed, Kumar said.
As to the percentage of physical progress, Kumar said the third unit is 75 percent complete and the fourth unit is 65 percent.
“The overall project cost for the two units is around Rs.11,459 crore. The project would be completed within the budget. There will be no cost escalation,” he added.
At RAPS where the other two 700 MW reactors are built at an outlay of Rs.12,300 crore, the preparatory work to install the coolant channels are on for the seventh unit under construction.
“Welding of end shield and calandria is over. Preparation work for core components – coolant channels – has started. It will take six months to complete,” B.C. Pathak, project director for 7th and 8th units at RAPS, told IANS.
He said the seventh unit was expected to go on stream sometime in 2017-18 and almost 57 percent of the physical work had been completed.
The NPCIL already has six units at RAPS, with a total capacity of 1,180 MW (4×220 MW and one each of 100 MW and 200 MW).
Ruling out any cost escalation, Pathak added: “We expect to complete the project within the budget. The softening of steel prices has resulted in lower escalation in costs.”
As for the eighth unit, the overall physical progress was around 40 percent.
“All the tenders have been finalised and contracts issued. There is no major tender that needs to be processed,” he added.
The senior NPCIL official said both the upcoming units will share many common facilities like the switchyard, control building and others.
The other first of its kind reactor in India located at Kudankulam in Tamil Nadu is expected to restart power generation on October 30.
The unit has been jumping restart deadlines.
The first 1,000 MW unit at Kudankulam Nuclear Power Project (KNPP) was shut down this June for annual maintenance.
The unit was connected to the southern grid in December 2014. The unit was operating at 60 percent capacity for some time before it was shut down for annual maintenance.
At the time of its shut down in June, NPCIL said the unit will restart after 60 days post annual maintenance and refuelling.
The NPCIL is setting up two units at KNPP with Russian equipment. The second unit on which work has been completed to the extent of 98.50 percent is expected to start the fission process in December 2015.
(Venkatachari Jagannathan, IANS)
The UK government on Thursday announced that it will move India from the red to the amber list on Sunday, in the country's latest update to the 'Red-Amber-Green' traffic light ratings for arrivals into England amid the Covid-19 pandemic.
This means the visit visas for the UK from India are open, in addition to other long-term visas that have remained open. But travellers from India arriving in England can complete a 10-day quarantine at home or in the place they are staying (not mandatorily quarantine in a managed hotel).
The UK government also announced that arrivals from France to England will no longer need to quarantine if they are fully vaccinated. The step aligns France with the rest of the amber list now that the proportion of beta variant cases has fallen, where those who are fully vaccinated with a vaccine authorised and administered in the UK, the US or Europe do not need to quarantine when arriving in England.
This move also simplifies the system to three categories, as well as the green watch list to give travellers notice where green status is at risk.
To continue cautiously reopening international travel, Austria, Germany, Slovenia, Slovakia, Latvia, Romania and Norway will be added to the government's green list, having demonstrated they posed a low risk to UK public health.
Besides India, Bahrain, Qatar and the UAE will also be moved from the red to the amber list, as the situation in these countries has improved.
The data for all countries will be kept under review and the government will not hesitate to take action where a country's epidemiological picture changes, a statement by the UK government said.
Following an assessment of the latest data, Georgia, La Reunion, Mayotte and Mexico will be added to the red list as they present a high public health risk to the UK from known variants of concern, known high-risk variants under investigation or as a result of very high in-country or territory prevalence of Covid-19.
Arrivals from Spain and all its islands are advised to use a PCR test as their pre-departure test wherever possible, as a precaution against the increased prevalence of the virus and variants in the country.
Transport Secretary Grant Shapps said: "We are committed to opening up international travel safely, taking advantage of the gains we've made through our successful vaccination programme, helping connect families, friends and businesses around the world.
"While we must continue to be cautious, today's changes reopen a range of different holiday destinations across the globe, which is good news for both the sector and travelling public."
Since February, anyone who arrives in the UK from a red list country has been required by law to book a stay in a managed quarantine facility for 10 days.
In order to ensure taxpayers are not subsidising the costs of staying in these facilities, which have gone up, the cost will increase from August 12. Alternative payment arrangements remain available to those who genuinely cannot afford to pay and rates remain the same for children up to 12.(IANS/HP)
A Hindu temple in Pakistan's Punjab province was reportedly vandalized by hundreds of people after a nine-year-old Hindu boy, who allegedly urinated at a local seminary, received bail, a media report said on Thursday.
According to the Dawn news report, the incident took place on Wednesday in Bhong town, about 60 km from Rahim Yar Khan city.
Besides the vandalization, the mob also blocked the Sukkur-Multan Motorway (M-5), the report added.
Citing sources, Dawn news said that a case was registered against the minor on July 24 based on a complaint filed by a cleric, Hafiz Muhammad Ibrahim, of the Darul Uloom Arabia Taleemul Quran.
The sources said that "some Hindu elders did tender an apology to the seminary administration saying the accused was a minor and mentally challenged".
But, when a lower court granted him bail a few days ago, some people incited the public in the town on Wednesday and got all shops there closed in protest, the report quoted the sources as further saying.
A video clip showing people wielding clubs and rods storming the temple and smashing its glass doors, windows, lights, and damaging the ceiling fans went viral on social media.
In response, one Twitter user said: "Ganesh Temple, village Bhong in Rahim Yar Khan, Punjab has been ravaged. Another day, another attack on Hindus in Pakistan."
Another said: "Yesterday, the mob ran amok at Temple over minor boy issue who allegedly urinated, the boy said to be mentally handicapped. Hindu community made an apology for the boy — a case registered against the nine-year-old boy. Those vandalized temples, no FIR registered against them."
District police spokesman Ahmed Nawaz Cheema said Rangers had been deployed in the troubled area and the situation was under control.
A small town close to the River Indus and Sindh-Punjab border, Bhong houses a number of gold traders who originally hail from Ghotki and Dehrki (Sindh), according to the Dawn news report.
A ruling PTI member representing the minority said he had been in touch with the local Hindu community and influential Rais family of Bhong since the issue surfaced.
OṀ KALMASHARAHITABHŨMYAI NAMAH:
OṀ (AUM) -KAL-MA-SHA-RA-HI-TA-BHOO-MYAI— NA-MA-HA
ॐ कल्मषरहितभूम्यै नमः
(Kalmasham: Tainted, blemish, dirty, sinful, wicked, foul, dosha, opprobrium, stigma; Rahita: Absent, devoid of)
Kalmasham is the opposite of purity; it means impure, contaminated and defective. The word is used in several senses such as: defective, fault, sin, dosham, tainted, vice, crime, disrespect, abuse, evil and contamination. However, it is also used in a technical sense in certain fields of knowledge. In Vedic literature we see words like pavitram, and pavitrata in the opposite sense of kalmasham. We, as Hindus, see everything as pure and equitable with God in an implied meaning that every atom at the microscopic level is part of the Supreme Power (Bhagavān). Having this knowledge and understanding, Hindus see the presence of God in living as well as non-living objects and have a pavitra meaning- kalmasharahita bandham.
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In Vedas and Purāṇās, Lord Shri Ramachandra Murty is portrayed without any defects and His marriage with Sīta was described as kalmasharahitam. He was glorified as the one who strictly observed the 'ekapatnī vratam' meaning-'one wife as a life partner'. Even when Sīta was abducted by the demon- Rāvaṇa and he kept her in his palace for a year, Rama did not look at another woman. The same credit goes to His consort and wife Sīta, who came out of Agni (pyre of fire) as a shining diamond proving her chastity and kalmasharahitam to the world. Our sacred literature is full of these incidents. Our dharmaśhāstrās explain that what is kalmasham is that which brings defection to one's purity. They advise purity in our thought, speech and actions.
God Ram and Goddess SitaGetty Pictures
There are many relationships we have as an individual. Some are pure and kalmasharahitam, as opposed to other relationships, like extramarital affairs. The relationship between husband and wife; brother and sister; father and daughter; parents and children; between siblings; teacher and student; among friends; and last but not least, between a devotee and his desired, beloved and personal god are considered kalmasharahitam.
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As a country, we have never waged war against another country with the intention of occupancy and robbing their wealth, or to convert them to our religion. We do not have that kalmasham on our hands or in our hearts.
Our land is 'Kalmasharahita Bhūmi'.