A massive fire erupted at a natural-gas producing well of Oil India Limited (OIL) in upper Assam’s Tinsukia district which leaked gas for the last 14 days. The fire began this afternoon and may spread to adjoining areas.
Assam Chief Minister Sarbananda Sonowal discussed the matter with Union Petroleum Minister Dharmendra Pradhan after the fire started. Since the gas leaked, the National Disaster Response Force (NDRF) has been deployed in the area. According to sources, “well killing” experts from Singapore also reached to join the operations this morning.
‘On May 27, the oil well at Baghjan Tinsukia had a blowout after leaking gas for the past 14 days. Located 500 kilometers from Guwahati, the gas leak caused grave damage to the wetlands and biodiversity.
The incident occurred at well number five of the plant and no immediate casualties were reported. Dark clouds of smoke were captured coming out from the plant and engulfing the premises. The incident triggered panic among the residents of the Baghjan village. The government has already evacuated at least 6,000 people and taken to relief camps. Oil India Limited has also announced financial relief of Rs 30,000 to each of the affected families.
Paddy fields, ponds and wetlands in the adjoining villages have also been contaminated and the situation is getting worse day-by-day. Several tea growers in the area complained about layers of gas condensates in their tea gardens. Heart rendering images were captured by locals showing gas condensate depositing in the Maguri Beel wetland, carcasses of endangered Gangetic dolphins and other aquatic life floating in the Dibru-Saikhowa National Park, barely three kilometres from the oil field.