New Delhi Jan 16 (Agencies): University Grants Commission (UGC) has come out with guidelines to varsities on use and safe disposal of radioactive elements, nearly eight months after origin of Cobalt-60, which lead to the death of a man here, was traced to Delhi University's chemistry department.

 "UGC have been asked various universities and colleges to follow the set guidelines on usage of radioactive elements without fail," UGC Chief A N CAG said.

Under these guidelines, universities and colleges have been asked to seek permission from Atomic Energy Regulatory Board (AERB) on purchase of radioactive substance, details on its use, formation and solutions in case of an emergency among others.

Cobalt-60, a radioactive isotope of cobalt, lead to the death of a scrap shop worker in west Delhi Mayapuri last year following which the UGC had issued fresh guidelines in connection with the usage of radioactive elements.

The element was lying unused for 25 years in the department.

Under these guidelines, the varsities have to obtain No Objection certificate from AERB, which can also monitor the colleges from where they have gathered the material.

They are also directed to maintain proper disposal mechanism for liquid radioactive substance.

These educational institutions also require AERB's approval for the use of X-ray machines, the UGC official said.