Sunday, 09 December, 2018

Rahul Gandhi demands judicial probe into NTPC blast, meets victims

Death toll in NTPC-Unchahar plant explosion rises to 32 NTPC boiler blast death toll rises to 32
Kenny Thornton | 05 November, 2017, 10:40

Power Minister R K Singh on Thursday announced additional compensation of Rs 20 Lakh ex-gratia payment for the families of those killed in the Wednesday's explosion at NTPC's power plant in Uttar Pradesh's Rae Bareli district.

"Death toll 32 so far".

NTPC Chairman Gurdeep Singh, addressing reporters today, said they'll shift 12 more people to Safdarjung hospital in New Delhi and will ensure they can provide best possible treatment to them.

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The Uttar Pradesh police had on Thursday set-up green corridor till airport to bring three persons injured in the NTPC accident to Delhi's AIIMS via special aircraft.

Congress Vice President Rahul Gandhi halted his Gujarat Assembly Election Campaign and rushed to Raebareli, the Lok Sabha constituency of his mother and party President Sonia Gandhi.

Fraud probe to delay Liberia election run-off - election commission
However, most observers agree the scheduled date of November 7 now looks near-impossible. Johnson Sirleaf denied the meetings were inappropriate.

The plant in Rae Bareli district is around 110km from Lucknow. After the hospital visit, he is heading to the NTPC explosion site where other senior Congress leaders including Ghulam Nabi Azad, Raj Babbar, Sanjay Singh and Pramod Tewari will be joining him.

Later, the Amethi member of parliament also visited private hospitals, SIMHANS and Nirmal, and enquired about condition of blast victims admitted there.

"People are saying that it (the plant unit) was run early (before schedule)".

"The accident showed serious lapse in working of the unit and to know the reason behind it a judicial probe was needed", Gandhi said during a brief interaction with media at the hospital. The toll could rise as the injured originally numbered 100.

Expressing concern, the commission in a statement said that a "high-level probe into the matter is immediately required to ascertain the negligence and errors, if any, behind the incident, which involves the right to life". "Had the NTPC Power Plant also been saffron, the tragedy may not have been have happened", Anwar said.

Hours after the incident, Uttar Pradesh Chief Minister Yogi Adityanath announced an ex-gratia of Rs 2 lakh for the kin of deceased, Rs 50,000 for critically injured and Rs 25,000 for those with minor injuries. A detailed report is expected from the government within six weeks, the rights panel said.

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