KOLLAM: The Factories and Boilers Department has given permission to start operating the plants at the Kerala Minerals and Metals Ltd in Chavara as part of the probe to find out the gas leakage.
The plants requires at least 20-30 hours for the chemical reactions and gas emissions. “The plant would be made operational to check the leakage. Once the preparations are done, the inspection will begin,’’ said Labour Minister Shibu Baby John at Chavara. The special investigation team probing into the gas leak incident questioned the engineers operating the plants where the gas leaked on Wednesday.
The expert committee led by ADGP A Hemachandran is also looking into the ‘’human error’’ in managing the leak of gas from the valves of the plants inside the factory. Other angles being probed include chances of ‘sabotage’ by external forces and ‘laxity’ on the side of employees.
The team visited the school premises to find out the presence of carbon monoxide and sulphur dioxide fumes in the air.
A special medical team which had visited the site to assess the medical conditions of the children admitted to the hospitals, submitted the report before the Thiruvananthapuram Medical College Principal.
A high-level meeting will be held on August 12 at the chamber of Industries Minister to discuss the reports submitted by the expert committees on the incident.
Meanwhile, N K Premachandran MP said that the sabotage angle cannot be ruled out considering the targeted impact of the leak affecting a few children and the ‘rescue measures’.
‘’This should be seen from the context of vested interests working against the company. The Industries Department should take more care about the company,’’ said Premachandran.
Call for CBI Probe
Meanwhile, talking to reporters in Delhi, Opposition leader V S Achuthanandan said that an inquiry by the CBI can be considered as there was suspicion of a ‘sabotage’ angle to the incident. As many as 119 students of schools in the vicinity of the KMML were hospitalised following a gas leak on two consecutive days since Wednesday.