Andhra Pradesh

Groundwater contaminated at Venkatapuram: residents

Residents of Venkatapuram showing the polluted groundwater, in Visakhapatnam on Sunday.

Residents of Venkatapuram showing the polluted groundwater, in Visakhapatnam on Sunday.   | Photo Credit: C.V. Subrahmanyam

They seek CBI probe into styrene monomer vapour leak

The groundwater at Venkatapuram village, after styrene monomer vapour leaked from the LG Polymers plant on May 7, has become highly contaminated even at a depth of 500 metres, according to Ch. Kiran Kumar, treasurer, LG Polymers Gas Victims Welfare Association.

Mr. Kiran Kumar and association representatives K. Satya Rao and G. Chandrasekhar brought a bottle of groundwater from the village and showed it to BJP leaders MLC P.V.N. Madhav and former MLA P. Vishnu Kumar Raju, at a programme here on Sunday.

Mr. Kiran Kumar said that the residents of Venkatapuram were not aware of the presence of hazardous chemicals at the LG Polymers plant in their village, till the fateful day.

“We built our house in 2008 after getting approval of the Greater Visakhapatnam Municipal Corporation (GVMC). Visakhapatnam West MLA P.G.V.R. Naidu, who has been living in that area, since his childhood, was not aware of the presence of hazardous chemicals,” he said.

The company management had never created any awareness programmes in the local area to educate the public on the precautions to be taken in case of an emergency and no mock drills were conducted. The alarm and siren were not sounded on the day of the mishap. This speaks volumes of the callousness of the management, he said.

The victims demanded a CBI probe into the styrene vapour leak, shifting of the factory from residential localities and payment of ₹5 crore to the kin of the deceased and ₹1 crore to the residents towards diminution in property value and ₹50 lakh to each surviving victim, who had undergone mental turmoil during the 48 hours after the leak. Mr. Madhav said that the Centre would not allow hazardous industries in residential areas. He said that there were indications that the company would be shifted to an industrial area.

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Printable version | Jul 11, 2020 3:20:15 AM | https://www.thehindu.com/news/national/andhra-pradesh/groundwater-contaminated-at-venkatapuram-residents/article31828953.ece

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