I have heard that in some parts of India milk is made using shampoo and sold in open markets. I would like to know about this?
Adulteration of milk with a chemically synthesised milky liquid (synthetic milk) is a big concern today. Synthetic milk is prepared by emulsifying vegetable oils with appropriate amount of detergents, urea, caustic soda, sugar, salt etc. are dissolved in water and blended with the detergent emulsified oil. This mixture is then mixed with natural milk in varying proportions.
The dairy industry employs various checks, but a dulterers manage to get away because synthetic milk is an excellent imitation of natural milk. Milk fat is mimic- ked by vegetable oil, the nitrogen component in milk protein is mimicked by urea and the white colour is got by shampoo. Detergents are added to make it frothy. Synthetic milk consumption leads to kidney failure and liver damage.
Local milk vendors in Uttar Pradesh mix 'Reetha' (a herb used to shampoo hair) with refined oils like Chambal, Helicopter and Dhara and then add it to a mixture of water, sugar, salt and urea. Sunsilk shampoo, caustic soda, starch and paper pulp is another lethal concoction.
I want to know how safe is free flowing refined iodised salt. I have heard that cynates and silicates are added as anti-caking agents to make it free flowing. Also, is excess of iodine in salt harmful for the human body?
Salt is prone to caking, due to its hygroscopicity. Above 75% relative humidity, it absorbs water, forming brine on the surface of the crystals. Below this, it will lose water, causing the brine to evaporate, leaving strong bridges of salt between crystals. This leads to lumps and within a short time to solidification. While absorbent agents such as silicon dioxide, some carbonates and phosphates can be used, the quantity needed and the low solubility of such materials makes them undesirable for many applications.
Should salt bridges form, these are very fragile and easily broken when disturbed. Because the action is very specific, only very small quantities are needed, amounting to little more than a mono-molecular layer on individual salt crystals. Anti-caking agents have set standards under the food grade salt.
In India the Prevention of Food Adulteration Act (PFA) has set the guidelines for food grade salt product respect of edible common salt, iodised salt and iron fortified salt, anti-caking agents have been permitted in quantities not exceeding 2 per cent either singly or in combination. The anti-caking agents usually used by the salt industries are silicates. These are health hazards if above the prescribed limits, but fine if below that.
I just wanted to know if there have been any campaigns on garbage segregation in Delhi by the Government, NGOs or other groups.
Yes. Vatavaran has transformed Jawahar Lal Nehru University into an almost zero waste zone by segregating waste and sending it for recycling and composting. Chintan is working with NDMC in Nizamuddin, Connaught Place and Dilli Haat, where they take the help of rag pickers. Toxics Link has done extensive research on waste management and segregation and reproduced it in books.
The Delhi Government has also started a waste segregation campaign for households as part of the Bhagidari scheme. Come 2004, and it will be mandatory to segregate your waste in your homes into the dry bin and the wet bin or face a fine! For more information contact:
(Dr Iqbal Malik) 540, Hawa Singh Block, Asian Games
Village, New Delhi 110049
Chintan (Bharti Chaturvedi) 17,
Jungpura Mkt, New Delhi-110013
Toxics Link, H-2, Jungpura Extension,
New Delhi 110014
I am writing a classroom resource guide on water and would like to include your publication and website. I would also love for the Earth Child Institute to become an educational partner. Bravo for your wonderful work!!!
Donna L Goodman
Earth Child Institute
We have been running more than 50 Nature clubs in high school in Nepal for many years and we hope to increase their number in the future. We also run different eco-activities for communities too. We cover topics like pollution, solid waste management, biodiversity conservation, ecotourism, natural and cultural heritage conservation.
The monsoons bring with them joy and happiness. Rains are a time to celebrate and they put everyone in a fes- tive mood. It is a time when farmers’ prayers are answered. But I still cannot understand why people ask questions like: “Why did it have to rain so much?” or “Oh God! I hate these rains”. These are the very people who were asking for rains when it’s hot.
We should consider the rains as a gift of god and not crib. Rains help us, give us plenty of water and increase the water table. My message to everyone is: Enjoy monsoons and nature, just don’t spoil the fun.
Class 7 Modern School Barakhamba,
I went through your website and I really learnt a lot, especially on issues concerning poverty. I read the Gobar Times issue on Grass (dated June 30), which was an eye opener. Especially on how we as humans depend on grasses for survival, and without being conscious of it! Also of interest was the article on nomads. Here in Nigeria, the nomads have been accused of facilitating desert encroachment and have actively been criticized by the government and various groups.
From what I have read and chips, we usually throw the wrappers on the ground or road. Why can’t we just go and throw it in the dustbin? Why do we have to make the rag pickers pick it up? We can also try to clean our country for a better world. But personally I feel that rag pickers should not pick up trash and they should go to school like us. Viveka Who made that mess? Who made a mess of the planet? And what's that bad smell in the breeze?
Who punched a hole in the ozone so far, I can now deduce that a well organized plan is necessary from both the government and the people in order to provide an alternative means of grazing for the nomads and also at the same time prevent problems like desertification.
However it is a well-known fact that our governments in Africa are fond of dishing out bogus policies and laws, which are never implemented, so there seems to be no solution in sight for us. I am also interested in women empowerment. I would like to know if you have publications related to these issues.
GT replies: Thank your for your interest in Gobar Times. Please log on to http://csestore.cse.org.in/ for our complete list of books.
We received a bag full of mail from the Shri Ram School in Vasant Vihar, New Delhi. We are sharing some of their thoughts with you:
I earned Rs 15 by selling old newspapers and cardboards to the kabadiwallah. I made separate bags for the different types of waste. The kabadiwallah didn’t take plastic bottles since they can’t be recycled. So we have now put a water purifier (reverse osmosis system) in our kitchen and have stopped buying bottled water. I also gave away my old clothes, so they are being reused by others. Bhavya Bishnoi
We should try and help rag pickers by separating our trash. We have to remember that when we buy sweets and chips, we usually throw the wrappers on the ground or road. Why can’t we just go and throw it in the dustbin? Why do we have to make the rag pickers pick it up? We can also try to clean our country for a better world. But personally I feel that rag pickers should not pick up trash and they should go to school like us. Viveka
Who made that mess?
Who punched a hole in the ozone And who took an axe to my trees?
Who tossed that junk in the river
Who's going to tidy up later