At least 22 people were killed and more than 70 were injured when a boiler exploded in NTPC’s Unchahar plant in Rae Bareli district of Uttar Pradesh on Wednesday afternoon. Sadly, the number of dead people may increase as many are still believed to be trapped inside the unit. The incident involved the 500 MW boiler of Unchahar project’s brand new Unit 6, which was authorized just six months ago.
“At around 1530 hrs on 01.11.2017, there was sudden abnormal sound at 20 mt. elevation and there was opening in the corner no. 2 from which hot flue gases and steam escaped affecting the people working around the area. In the mishap, 8 people succumbed to the injuries. About 10 persons with serious injuries have been referred to nearby hospitals and to Lucknow to provide immediate treatment,” said the statement issued by NTPC. The plant, on the other hand, has been shut down for now. For the rescue operation, a National Disaster Rescue Force (NDRF) team has also been sent. Talking about the treatment of the injured, they’re being treated at two hospitals including one within the NTPC campus. Victims of worst burn injuries are being sent to hospitals in Lucknow, which is around 110 km away.
The Prime Minister Narendra Modi tweeted and ensured that the officials are giving their best to restore normalcy. “Deeply pained by the accident at the NTPC plant in Rae Bareli. My thoughts are with the bereaved families. May the injured recover quickly. The situation is being closely monitored and officials are ensuring normalcy is restored,” PM Modi tweeted. The Uttar Pradesh Chief Minister Yogi Adityanath, who is in Mauritius on a three-day official visit, directed 2 lakh for the families of the dead and 50,000 for the seriously wounded. Busy in campaigning for Gujarat for next month’s elections, the Congress Vice President Rahul Gandhi said that he will visit Rae Bareli today, which is also his mother and Congress President Sonia Gandhi’s constituency. “Due to the unfortunate NTPC accident, I will visit Rae Bareli tomorrow (Thursday) morning. Will join Gujarat Navsarjan Yatra in the afternoon,” Gandhi tweeted.
Anand Kumar, one of the senior most police officers in the state, said that “As of now, the immediate priority for us is to rush those injured to the best possible treatment and that is being done. All possible resources are being mobilized”.