16 Die 17 hurt in Fire at GAIL Pipeline
GAIL (India) Limited deeply mourns the tragic loss of life and property in the unfortunate incident along the natural gas pipeline of the company at Tatipaka in East Godavari district of Andhra Pradesh yesterday. The company is working closely with district authorities to provide immediate relief and rehabilitation to the affected people.
Sixteen people died in the incident and 17 others, who were injured, are being treated in four hospitals in the vicinity.In addition to the compensation from Prime Minister and Chief Minister’s Relief Funds, GAIL will pay a compensation of Rs 20 lakhs to the next of kin of each of the deceased, as announced by Hon’ble Union Minister of State for Petroleum and Natural Gas (Independent Charge) Shri Dharmendra Pradhan.
Besides, in the case of those permanently disabled, Rs 5 lakhs for each affected person shall be put in a fixed deposit to enable subsistence benefits through Monthly Income Schemes. Further, Rs 50,000 will be paid to those injured in the mishap. In a meeting of Director (Projects) with the District Collector on June 28, 2014, it was decided that the compensation shall be deposited with the District Authorities for immediate disbursement in the case of the deceased.
GAIL will also bear the medical expenses of all the injured persons and best possible medical care will be provided to them. GAIL Helpdesks have been set up at Apollo Hospital & Trust at Kakinada, KIMS Hospital at Amlapuram and Balbolini Hospital at Rajahmundry, where the injured are being treated. All facilitation is being rendered to the family members of the injured persons at these hospitals.
Food and temporary shelter have already been arranged for the affected persons and a detailed Plan of Action is being drawn up for their rehabilitation.
The loss of property as well as crops is being assessed in consultation with the district authorities and GAIL will be extending compensation for the same.
GAIL has committed to undertake a series of welfare-measures as part of its Corporate Social Responsibility initiatives which include construction of permanent houses for the affected families and setting up a skill up gradation centre for local residents. The company will also be creating a corpus fund under its CSR umbrella specifically for welfare activities in Nagaram village.
Further, in addition to the external investigations that are underway to ascertain the cause of the incident, a decision has been taken to conduct internal investigations. A committee headed by Executive Director (O&M) shall submit its report within 48 hours. The Internal Audit Group shall undertake audits to thoroughly check the various pipeline systems and submit detailed report within a fortnight.
These decisions were taken at a meeting chaired by GAIL Chairman and Managing Director Shri. B C Tripathi, upon his return from his visit to the site of the incident. It was also decided to engage an international consultant of repute to conduct an intensive third-party audit of its pipeline safety systems and other hydrocarbon installations as a precautionary measure.