IOC fire causing health concerns

Rajasthan government to set up panel for speedy disposal of insurance claims



The Rajasthan government is now facing the wrath of businessmen worst affected by the devastating fire, that has so far, claimed 12 lives and injured nearly 150.

Of the 10 identified, seven were IOC employees and three were from Genus Electronics. The district administration has allowed shops and offices in an area of a kilometre from the inferno site.
District collector Kuldeep Ranka said the fire still continues to rage in four tanks.

The suspended transport on Jaipur-Tonk highway could not be resumed after two more blasts on Sunday night in two barrels of lubricants.

While the Central committee headed by former IOC chief, M B Lal, started its probe on Monday, the state government has decided to set-up a high level committee headed by industry commissioner for a speedy disposal of insurance claims of the affected industrial units in the Sitapura industrial area.
The members of Sitapura Industrial Association have also asked the government to provide adequate compensation to the affected entrepreneurs.

With the remaining two oil tanks still billowing poisonous black smoke, residents from the nearby villages and colonies are reaching hospitals with complaints of sore throat, irritation in eyes and heaviness in chest.

State Health Minister Immauddin Ahmad said four medical teams were operating in the affected areas to offer quick assistance.  The teams have examined over 800 people in Jaipur while eye specialists have been asked to offer their services through mobile vans in nearby villages like Shivdaspura and Chaksu, he said.  The state government has decided to defer collection of VAT till March 2010 for Sitapura industrial units while waving service tax and fire service tax for a year. The Rajasthan Financial Corporation will also give top up loan of Rs 10 lakh to entrepreneurs while allowing them extended period to repay their loans.

Meeting today

Chief Minister Ashok Gehlot who held a high-level meeting with IOC officials to review the situation on Monday said that Union Petroleum Minister Murli Deora has convened a meeting in New Delhi on Tuesday to discuss compensation and rehab package to the victims and industrial units.
Rajasthan Industries Minister Rajendra Pareek, RIICO Chairman Sunil Arora and Principal Secretary C S  Rajan will participate in the meeting.

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