The residents of Gajuwaka area in Visakhapatnam of Andhra Pradesh staged a protest outside a fertiliser factory near their colonies, alleging poisonous gas leak from the factory on Monday night. The officials of the Coromandel Fertilisers Limited rushed to the site to check the gas leakage. The industrial plant officials, however, said that there was no such incident of gas leak from the factory.
Four people reportedly fell sick following the alleged gas leak. They allegedly complained of burning eyes and breathlessness. The residents, who were in a state of panic, informed the Malkapuram police. A police official told The Hindu that the factory had released some waste gas and that it is a normal practice by the industries in the area. The official also said that the residents would have felt the impact due to the weather conditions.
The residents of Pilakavanipalem and Kunchumamba colonies in Gajuwaka area accosted the company authorities when they visited the area following the complaints of the gas leakage. They protested near the site, alleging that the company was negligent in handling its operations. They also said that such practice of releasing harmful gases could harm their life. "We were unable to stay here as we could not bear the effect of the gases," a young girl told local media.
Earlier in May this year, at least 12 people were killed and around 585 people fell sick following a styrene vapour leak from LG Polymers in Vishakapatnam.
Following the incident, a committee appointed by the state government said that the gas leak was the result of the negligence of the company. The National Green Tribunal (NGT) stated that the company has "absolute liability" in loss of life.
A case was registered against the management of the company and 11 others were arrested and released later on bail.