Bhilai, Chhattisgarh, Oct 9: A blast in the gas pipeline near the coke oven of Bhilai steel plant here on Tuesday noon left at least 12 workers dead, authoritative sources said.
Ten other employees sustained severe burns in the blast which occurred due to pilferage. The leakage started in the gas pipeline which supplies gas to the coke oven of the plant and by the time the news could be communicated to the authorities concerned, the explosion took place and the area caught fire, according to sources in the industrial plant.
Twelve workers were charred to death while ten were severely injured.Those intensely burnt were admitted to the Plant's Sector 9 situated main hospital. Many of them are reported to be in critical condition. Steel Authority of India plant management and police authorities have not officially confirmed the actual death figures.
The senior management and district administration along with higher police authorities are at the accident site. Much of the gas pilferage and inferno due to it had been controlled with the help of chemicals and fire extinguishers.
Employees working at the unit and some leaders expressed apprehension that since a large number of workers were working inside at the time of the blast and some were deep inside, the death toll could rise.
The kin of the deceased agitated at the blast. People gathered outside the steel plant and the hospital. Central security forces and police were deployed in strength to monitor them. UNI