The National Green Tribunal have taken a strong note of the gas leak in Visakhapatnam, Andhra Pradesh . After hearing on the issue it has slapped an interim penalty of Rs 50 crore on LG Polymers India and sought response from the Centre and others in the gas leak incident , saying “there appears to be a failure to comply with the said Rules and other statutory provisions”.
A Styrene gas leaked at a chemical factory in Visakhapatnam, killing at least eleven people, including a minor. Another 1,000 people reported sick after the gas spread in five villages within a three-km radius of the plant.
People woke up breathless and feeling a burning sensation in their eyes as the emission spread to the adjoining villages at around 3.30 am. Some fell unconscious while fleeing, according to eyewitness accounts.
A bench, headed by NGT Chairperson Justice Adarsh Kumar Goel, set up a 5-member Committee to probe leak incident and submit a report before May 18.
“Having regard to the prima facie material regarding the extent of damage to life, public health and environment, we direct LG Polymers India Pvt Ltd to forthwith deposit an initial amount of Rs 50 crore, with the District Magistrate, Vishakhapatnam, which will abide by further orders of this tribunal. The amount is being fixed having regard to the financial worth of the company and the extent of the damage caused,” the bench said.
The NGT also issued notices to the Ministry of Environment and Forests, L G Polymers India, Andhra Pradesh State Pollution Control Board, Central Pollution Control Board, Vishakhapatnam District Magistrate and sought their response before May 18, the next date of hearing.