Mumbai:In a first of its kind, the Palghar District Collector Dr Prashant Narnaware has registered a FIR with the Boisar MIDC police against the Fire Brigade department of the Bhabha Atomic Research Centre (BARC) Tarapur for ignoring his call to rush the firepersonnel to quell the raging blasts in a pharma unit in Boisar MIDC on Thursday night. Three workers died and 15 injured due to the resounding 40 continuous blasts in the unit, causing damages to atleast 6 nearby chemical units in the chemical zone of the Boisar MIDC.
Said Dr Narnaware, as the chief of the District Disaster Management (DDM), I had called the BARC Fire Brigade and the Tarapur Atomic Power Station (TAPS) Fire Brigade to rush their state-of-the-art foam tenders to the site. But one Borkar of the BARC Fire Brigade told me that he had to seek permission from his superiors to rush the tenders, while the TAPS did not bother to send the fire tender, said the official. This is a violation under Section 56 and 57 of the Disaster Management Act,2005 as per law, I can order the nearest agency to help us in case of a calamity, and the agency have to comply with the order,as per law,said Dr Narnaware. It is to be noted that the Thursday blasts was no ordinary fire, but a huge chemical fire, and only water could not douse the flames, as in such cases, foam tenders are required,and such machines are with the TAPS and BARC said the official,so I told them to send the tenders, but no one responded. The MIDC Fire Brigade had just two foam tenders, which was not enough,and we had to call tenders from Vasai, Thane, Bhiwandi, Reliance Thermal,Dahanu, Palghar civic tenders to douse the flames,and had the BARC and TAPS sent their tenders on time, some damages or lives could have been saved,said Dr Narnaware and termed the incident as inhumane. The Boisar MIDC police have confirrmed about the FIR and said it is a nonbailable offence.
I had to send some officers from the Boisar MIDC police to BARC to fetch one Borkar who is in charge of the BARC Fire Brigade as this is gross negligence,said Dr Narnaware. However,on seeing the police, the TAPS fire tender was rushed to the spot, when the fire was nearly doused,and we needed them,when the fire was raging, he said.
There was no response from Dashrath Dogra, Media Officer, BARC when a SMS to his mobile went unanswered neither also calls made to his office was unanswered.
Meantime, a showcause notice has been issued to H Dhawad, Joint Director (Safety), Director of Industrial Safety and Health (DISH), Vasai for lapses in the blasts. We have asked him to reply to our notice within five days and after the reply is received, we will further action and if we are not satisfied with the reply, a FIR will also likely to be registered against DISH, said Dr Narnaware. Vikas Gajre, Sub Divsional Magistrate, Palghar is looking into the matter,said the official. In fact, we had conducted a meeting post a huge fire in Wada taluka,where officials from MIDC, MPCB, DISH and others were present and them to check for any loopholes in the chemical units, as there are 1,100 hazardous chemical units in Boisar MIDC alone,he said. But it seems none of the agencies bothered to check or conduct audit of the chemical units,and the Thursday night incident is a recent example, he said.
Meantime, the toll in the fire blasts stood at 3 dead, and 15 workers are still admitted in three private hospitals in Boisar while one worker, Nackched Singh is in a coma and admitted in a Mira Road hospital,said police.
Meantime, API Kishore Shinde of Boisar MIDC police station said a case of
accidental death have been registered with us and are awaiting the post mortem report of the three victims. We will take the statements of the injured after they are discharged from the hospital,he said. We are also awaiting the report from DISH, Vasai and later a FIR will be registered once we receive the report, said API Shinde.