Spewing gas continuously for the last 14 days, the damaged Baghjan oil well suddenly blasted and was engulfed in massive fire that destroyed several species of animals and displaced atleast 25000 people in Assam‘s Tinsukia. Earlier, the chances of an immediate fire had decreased due to incessant rain yet it destroyed the aquatic life in the area. Also Read - After Mumbai Police Makes Monica-Chandler Wear Masks, Assam Police Does Same With Pooja Hegde-Prabhas on Poster of Radhe Shyam
Ironically, ahead of World Environment Day, the Union Ministry for Environment, Forest and Climate Change (MoEFCC) had permitted oil drilling for hydrocarbons “at a distance as close as 500 meters” in a national park in Assam which left the netizens furious. Raising the ecological threat that Oil India Limited’s (OIL) bid to drill posed went unheard and soon the blast took place as the “very rich biodiversity and very valuable water system in the world faces the risk of irreversible pollution” now. Also Read - US Presidential Election 2020: Facebook Planning to Ban Political Ads Before November's Polls
Taking to their respective social media handles, the netizens lashed OIL, MoEFCC and Government of Assam for the “Chernobyl” like disaster. While one user on Twitter wrote, “Assam’s baghjan oil field had a massive explosion today because of a continued gas leak. The fire is spreading but no coverage of this news in national media!! If it was not in NE, everyone would have trended hts of #PrayForBaghjan Our resources are national, our problems are not (sic)” another lashed on Facebook, “The Oil belongs to the Nation! The Perils belong to the People! #SOSBaghjan P.S. Let this be a reminder; it’s been more than 14days for the first oil spillage but here we are ; Unheard. Unseen. Uncared. The land will burn. The people will get displaced. Life will go on. DHANDA will go on (sic).” Also Read - 'Not Right to Question Police': Ex-Ally Shiv Sena Backs BJP Over Vikas Dubey Encounter
Check out netizens’ reaction on the news here:
Even though the fire has been contained in a 1.5-km radius around the site but the blowout is reportedly continuing to leak gas in the same magnitude due to the lack of safety measures on behalf of the drilling company. Being 1.108 kms from Dibru-Saikhowa National Park and within 1 km from the famous Maguri-Matapung Wetland, the blast dislocated several indegenious people while killing rare gangetic dophins, innumerable fishes and other animals.
The two firefighters had gone missing after the well caught fire on Tuesday and their bodies were recovered by an NDRF team this morning, Oil India Spokesperson Tridiv Hazarika told PTI. Oil India Limited has said that it could take as long as four weeks to put out the blaze.