Compensation will come from insurance companies, says IOC Kerala chief at a stormy session of an LPG clinic

Indian Oil Corporation (IOC) , the largest LPG supplier in Kerala, has promised to help expedite compensation in connection with blasts of cooking gas cylinder that caused damage to property early this year.

Head of IOC’s LPG operations in Kerala A. Pandian said here that the oil company would take up the issue of compensation for the families though the company was not directly paying it.

The compensation will come from the insurance company the particular distributor has insured his operations with, said Mr. Pandian.

Speaking to reporters at the end of an LPG Clinic at Njarakkal, which turned stormy with people attending the session asking questions about what they claimed was IOC’s inaction with regard to the cases of cylinder blasts.

Tempers frayed and the Sub-Inspector of Police, Njarakkal, M. N. Balachandran walked out of the session because he said the IOC officials were not giving a clear answer on the issue at hand and that the company had not fixed responsibility for the incidents.

Cooperation

However, Mr. Pandian, fielding questions from the leaders of the communities and residential associations, said that safe use of LPG involved cooperation from all parties.

He said that LPG cylinders undergo tests through random samples and pointed out that everyone, including the customer needed to know how to handle the cylinders safely.

Cylinders dumped

He quoted a case in Palakkad, where loading and unloading workers were throwing down LPG cylinder from lorries to make the unloading easier.

This is clearly a case in which the workers handling the cylinders have to work conscientiously, he said.

He said that IOC would not run away from its responsibility and would continue to serve the people of Kerala with the service improving everyday.

Vice-president of Nayarambalam panchayat M. R. Vishwanathan demanded to know why a victim of LPG cylinder blast had not received the compensation even nine months after the incident.

Geeta Ajit, president of Murikkinpadam Residents' Association raised the question of why the IOC had not replaced the cylinder that burst at one of the homes in Murikkinpadam.

The IOC officials promised that the cylinder and the regulator would be replaced on Tuesday itself without any cost to the consumer.

Voluminous

IOC reaches around 70,000 cylinders everyday in Kerala making its operations voluminous. However, Mr. Pandian said that this was not to hide behind numbers but to explicate the enormous amount of care taken to ensure safety of the people.

The IOC official pointed out that in some cases people tended to use different types of fuels in the same room, which was a dangerous practice.

In other cases, the customers did not ask the delivery boy to demonstrate that the LPG cylinders are without defects.

Mr. Pandian said that inquiries were being conducted into the two recent cases of LPG cylinder blasts and that the findings would help avoid such incidents in the future.

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