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Stockholm beckons ecology professor

- Scientist to teach at prestigious university

Ashok Ghosh, head, water and environment department, AN College, has got an opportunity to teach at KTH Royal Institute of Technology, Stockholm, for two months.

The institute is one of the oldest technical universities in Sweden. Ghosh (63) would be the visiting professor at the prestigious varsity.

He would leave for the university on August 29 and return on October 1. His second month-long stint would be in February next year.

Ghosh said he got the opportunity to visit the university under the India4EUII programme, a joint collaboration of the Indian government and the European Commission. In 2010, Ghosh had visited the Karlsruhe University of Applied Sciences (Germany).

“Getting a chance to visit KTH Royal Institute of Technology is a big achievement as it is one of the most prestigious universities in Europe. Many professors there have done successful research work on arsenic contamination in groundwater,” said Ghosh.

He added: “Their researchers have recently carried out a successful project called Sasmit in Bangladesh, where the arsenic contamination in groundwater is very high. Under this project, the professors found out sustainable arsenic mitigation technique in Bangladesh. I also executed a similar kind of project at Maner in 2011. The solar power-based arsenic mitigation plant has been successfully installed at a small hamlet called Ramnagar near Maner, where the presence of arsenic was reported up to 452 parts per billion (ppb) against the permissible level of 10ppb.”

Ghosh, who has been made chairman of the State Level Expert Appraisal Committee (SEAC), a technical committee of the State Environment Impact Assessment Authority (SEIAA), said: “The project — Safe arsenic free drinking water through double reverse osmotic technique — was an attempt to ensure that inhabitants in rural Bihar would avail arsenic-free drinking water. The technique can remove 99.5 per cent of bacteria and arsenic. The project was a joint effort of students from Karlsruhe University of Applied Sciences and the department of environment and water management, AN College. ”

He said he would try to start research in collaboration with professors of KTH Royal Institute of Technology on arsenic contamination in groundwater in the state.