Swachh Bharat: Need to take science along with us, says expert

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Hyderabad, Mar 8: The 'Swachh Bharat' campaign of the Centre needs to take science along as an important component for the ambitious nationwide cleanliness drive to achieve better results, a senior scientist has said.

"I don't know whether it is (science being an important aspect of 'Swachh Bharat') right now. I am not in the programme. But, I think, if we want to fulfil the dream of 'Swachh Bharat', we need to take science along with us. You cannot do without it...," CSIR's Hyderabad-based Centre for Cellular and Molecular Biology (CCMB) Director Amitabha Chattopadhyay told PTI.

Swachh Bharat Abhiyaan

Noting that physical cleaning cannot be carried out all over the country by employing as many cleaners, he said appropriate technologies should be developed for the purpose.

Citing an example, he said oil-eating bacteria is available in the event of oil spills in the sea. He recalled that CCMB scientists had worked on growing bugs in degrading waste at low temperature conditions in the Siachen glacier.

"There is a bacteria that eats oil. You know these oil spills happen in sea. Scientists of Indian origin produced bacteria, which eat up these oil spills. "CCMB worked for Siachen glacier, unfortunately some soldiers recently passed away.

There is a lot of waste that is not degraded because of (low) temperatures. All these bugs work at these temperatures. Some of our scientists have worked very hard to make sure that there are bugs that work at cold temperatures," he said.

"So, we need to innovate. You cannot clean your country just by (physical) cleaning. So, that's where science comes in, (to provide) out-of-box solutions," Chattopadhyay said.

Asked if such solutions can be found for cleaning public places like roads, he said, "May be, metabolic engineering, a new bacteria that can eat up dirt. May be (on a public road), it is not done yet. It is not very high tech science. It can be done. Indian scientists have that kind of potential."


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