JEYPORE: The three-day ordeal of people living in villages near Deoghat in the district ended on Wednesday with the officials of district administration and Indian Oil Corporation Limited shifting the gas tanker from the area to Semiliguda.
On Monday, a tanker, carrying 17 tonne of LPG, overturned and fell into a nullah near Deoghat around 2 pm. The administration and police officials swung into action and banned use of inflammable substances in the villages and snapped power supply and mobile network to the area.
After efforts to evacuate gas from the tanker failed on Monday, IOCL officials from Visakhapatnam reached here on Tuesday and made efforts to transfer gas to another tanker. But this too did not work out and they had to release the gas into the air. As an extra caution, the villagers were alerted and asked not to use fire. The process took more than six hours and traffic was disrupted during the entire operation. The administration also had to stop the villagers from cremating the body of one Moina Jani of Gadvamandi village as a precaution. The body was buried later in the night.
On Wednesday too, traffic was disrupted for six hours as vehicles were stopped on either side of NH 26 from Visakhapatnam to Raipur to facilitate shifting of the tanker. Sources said the officials engaged heavy machines to shift the tanker to Semiliguda, where it will be cleaned.
The ban on use of inflammable substances disrupted normal life in the villages where the residents had to depend on dry food. The villagers of Gajalabadi under Bariniput panchayat in Jeypore block have complained that no arrangement has been made to provide them food as they have not been able to cook in their homes.
The 40-odd tribal families, who managed the first day with dry rice and stocked food, were seen scouting for food for their hungry family members on Tuesday and Wednesday. “We are hungry as we did not have a proper meal for the last three days and our children are suffering the most,” said Raghunath Kirisani. “We have already apprised the District Collector about our plight and are awaiting food packets,” added Damburu, another villager.
On Wednesday, some villagers moved out of their habitation to purchase food from Barniput and Jeypore, but many still languish without foodThe affected villagers have demanded immediate supply of cooked food by the administration to about 200 tribals.
Jeypore MLA Tara Prasad Bahinipati demanded that the district administration should provide immediate relief and compensation to the affected villagers.