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‘It may take months for JNCASR to function normally’

Lab equipment at Jawaharlal Nehru Centre for Advanced Scientific Research yet to be switched on as water has not receded

The damage caused by rainwater flooding the premises of the Jawaharlal Nehru Centre for Advanced Scientific Research (JNCASR) in Jakkur is yet to be estimated. Several buildings, including laboratories and library were inundated.

On Tuesday, Chief Minister Basavaraj Bommai, accompanied by Yelahanka MLA and senior civic officials, visited the centre and met with Bharat Ratna awardee, C.N.R. Rao, who is honorary president of JNCASR.

Admitting that the centre was also once part of Jakkur lake, he took stock of the damage which includes equipment and vital research samples.

“Necessary action will be taken to prevent water from entering the institution. A master plan would be drawn up to prevent flooding. The Centre will also be involved in drafting it,” said Mr. Bommai.

Damage not assessed

The exact extent of damage has not been assessed as rainwater had not receded and affected laboratory equipment has yet to be switched on, said K.R. Srinivas, Dean (Research and Development), JNCASR.

“There are three kinds of loss – of equipment, some of which are worth crores, of samples, and of time for students who are in different stages of their course,” he said, and added that some of the samples were salvaged and shipped to neighbouring research institutions.

Damage to the expensive equipment can be assessed by the engineers only after the water recedes. “Some may be serviced. But we are not sure if some have been damaged beyond repair,” he said. Prof. Srinivas said it was only on Tuesday afternoon that the email server was turned on again.

“It may take months for the multi-disciplinary centre to resume regular operations. For instance, the biology laboratories will have to be cleaned, fumigated and sanitised to ensure there is no contamination. This will also have a bearing on projects and thesis deadlines,” he said

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