How a 14-Day Gas Leak Wreaked Ecological Havoc in Assam’s Baghjan

What events led to the fire in the Oil India Limited-operated Baghjan gas field? Tune in to The Big Story!

Published11 Jun 2020, 03:54 PM IST
Podcast
1 min read

Less than a month after an industrial disaster cost 12 lives in Visakhapatnam, yet another toxic gas leak this time in Assam triggered a massive fire and extensive ecological damage.

After 14 days of continuous gas leak in an oil well, the Baghjan oil field in Upper Assam’s Tinsukia district burst into flames on 9 June with the fire going so high that the thick cloud of smoke could be spotted from a distance of 30 km from the site.

A day later, on 11 June, bodies of two firefighters who died fighting the massive blaze were recovered from a pond that they had jumped into as the fire engulfed the oil field. Thousands of locals had to be evacuated to relief centres, at least 30 houses that were close to the oil field were gutted in the fire and this incident also cost an enormous loss to the biodiversity of the area.

But what events led to such a disaster in the Oil India Limited-operated Baghjan gas field? Why did the gas leak go on for two weeks? What is being done to control the disaster? And what kind of ecological damage are we looking at? Tune in to The Big Story!

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