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‘Bamboo potential untapped'

Staff Reporter
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Seminar-cum-exhibition held on 'poor man's timber'

Green gold:Kamesh Salam, Director, Cane and Bamboo Technology Centre, Guwahati (right); Susanth C.S., Head, Centre for Bamboo Initiatives (second from right); and Neelam Manjunath, Managing Trustee, Centre for Green Building Materials & Technology, examining bamboo products displayed at the exhibition on Saturday.— Photo: K. GOPINATHAN
Green gold:Kamesh Salam, Director, Cane and Bamboo Technology Centre, Guwahati (right); Susanth C.S., Head, Centre for Bamboo Initiatives (second from right); and Neelam Manjunath, Managing Trustee, Centre for Green Building Materials & Technology, examining bamboo products displayed at the exhibition on Saturday.— Photo: K. GOPINATHAN

Popularly known in the past as the ‘poor man's timber', the true potential of bamboo remains untapped. It is one of the most green and versatile raw materials available today, and is regarded as ‘green gold' owing to its multi-functionality, ranging from construction, medicine to handicraft, said Kamesh Salam, Director of the Cane and Bamboo Technology Centre, Guwahati.

He was speaking at an exhibition-cum-seminar, ‘Bamboo for integrated development', jointly organised by the Centre for Green Building Material and Technology (CGBMT) and the Karnataka State Council for Science and Technology on the Indian Institute of Science campus on Saturday. It focussed on the promotion of bamboo and bamboo products.

Second position

India was the second richest nation in the world in terms of bamboo growth, Salam, keynote speaker and chief guest at the event, said. “Bamboo, in addition to being an annual crop, is also labour intensive and hence will provide a regular income to farmers,” he said.

Mr. Salam also announced the commencement of the institute's three-month certificate course, ‘Bamboo Application Technology'. The aim of the course will be to generate environment friendly and sustainable development and enhance the usage of bamboo as a building material. A maximum of 20 people will be admitted per academic year and applicants must be 16 years and above.

Neelam Manjunath, the founder of CGBMT and architect, spoke of the use of bamboo in construction and structural design. On display in the exhibition were models of Ms. Manjunath's bamboo-based buildings.

Other speakers from Indian Plywood Industries Research and Training Institute, National Institute of Design and Mansaram Architects highlighted the importance of research and development in this field.

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