Friday, March 30, 2001, Chandigarh, India


M A I N   N E W S

GSLV remains undamaged

Chennai, March 29
GSLV-D1, the Geosynchronous Satellite Launch Vehicle which failed to lift off yesterday, remained undamaged and was safe and fit to be flown again after carrying out the necessary rectifications.

Even as senior scientists in Sriharikota Range (SHAR) began analysing voluminous data to ascertain what went wrong and why one of the four strap-on engines could not develop the required thrust along with other three engines which led to the abortion of the mission, engineers drained out the liquid fuel stored in the second and third cryogenic stages of the vehicle.

Soon after the Indian Space Research Organisation (ISRO) chief, Dr K. Kasturirangan, had announced last evening, the “cancellation of the mission for the time being”, the engineers, who had been working round-the-clock for the past 60 hours, swung into action and drained the liquid fuel last night itself, SHAR sources said.

The second stage was loaded with 37.5 tonnes of unsymmetrical di-methyl hydrazine (UDMH) and the third cryo stage with liquid hydrogen and liquid oxygen. The drained fuel was taken back to the storage facilities near the launch pad, the sources said.

Besides damaging the tanks, the fuel, if allowed to remain in the tanks, would “eat away the engines”, especially in the cryo stage, the sources added.

Meanwhile, the giant 49 metre tall, 409 tonne vehicle, which stayed on the launch pedestal with its umbilicals connected to the umbilical mast, has been moved back to the mobile service tower (MST).

Enquiries with scientists in SHAR revealed that the vehicle would not be disintegrated and only the faulty strap-on engine would be replaced to make it ready for the next launch. Dismissing as incorrect, reports that one of the strap-on engines caught fire leading to the abortion of the mission, the scientists said it was only the insulations that caught fire when some puff fell on it.

The in-built safety mechanism was so perfect that even if one of the engines did not develop the required thrust, the rocket releasing mechanism would not work and that was why the vehicle did not take off, they said. UNIBack



Punjab population is 2.42 cr
Sex ratio lowest in Ludhiana
Tribune News Service

Chandigarh, March 29
The population of Punjab is 2,42,89,296, as per provisional figures of Census-2001, released here today. It was 2,02,81,969 in 1991.

The Chief Secretary, Mr N. K. Arora, who released the provisional population totals presented to him by the Director, Census, Mr Inderjit Singh, said the figures were as on March 1, 00.00 hours, the reference date for the Census.

Out of the total population (2,42,89,296) 1,29,63,362 were males and 1,13,25,934 females. Punjab’s population constitutes 2.37 per cent of the total population of the country.

During the last 10 years, the population in Punjab has gone up by 40.07 lakh, registering a decadal growth rate of 19.76 per cent.

The sex ratio has, however, declined from 882 in 1991 to 874 at present (2001). The density of population is up from 403 in 1991 to 482 now.

The literacy rate is 69.95 per cent.

The highlights of the provisional totals are as follows:

— The growth rate of population has decreased from 20.81 per cent in 1981-91 to 19.76 per cent in 1991-01.

— During the first 50 years of the 20th century (1901-51) there was an addition of only 16.16 lakh, while in the remaining 50 years, 1951-01 the addition was 11.29 lakh in the Punjab population; more than 9 times.

— Punjab, occupying only 1.5 per cent of the geographical area of India has a share of 2.37 per cent in the country’s population. Uttar Pradesh is the most populous and Sikkim, the least. Among all states, union territories, Lakshadweep is the lowest in terms of population size. Punjab ranks 15th in terms of population in the country.

— Amritsar with 30.74 lakh tops as the most populous district, followed closely by Ludhiana (30.30 lakh). Together the two districts contain one-fourth (25.14 per cent) of the state’s population. In contrast, Fatehgarh Sahib is the smallest district with a population of 5.40 lakh only.

— Ludhiana has recorded the highest growth rate, 24.79 per cent, while, Nawanshahr recorded the lowest, 10.43 per cent and

— Punjab has one of the lowest sex ratios (number of females per 1,000 males) in the country. The ratio was continuously rising from 1911 to 1999. But after 80 years, it showed a decline from 882 in 1991 to 874 in 01.The national level sex ratio is 933.

— Punjab ranks 29th in sex ratio. Within the state, Hoshiarpur has highest sex ratio, 935, followed by Nawanshahr, 913.The lowest is in Ludhiana, 824.

— Punjab’s literacy rate is slightly higher — 69.95 per cent — than the national average of 65.38 per cent. Punjab is number 16 in literacy. Literacy has shown an increase by 11.44 per cent in the past 10 years. The female literacy during this decade has shown an increase of 13.14 per cent, while, male literacy has shown an increase of 9.97 per cent only.

— Hoshiarpur is the most literate district, 81.40 per cent, Mansa is at the bottom with a literacy percentage of 52.50.

— In terms of number of persons per Punjab ranks 10th with a density of 482. Ludhiana with a density of 824 is the most dense, while, Muktsar with a density of 297 is the least dense district.

Today Punjab, as compared to 1991 figures, has four divisions against three then, 17 districts against 12, 72 tehsils against 46, 157 towns against 120 and 12,729 villages against 12,795 in 1991.Back

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