'State-of-the-art' Gujarat incinerator chosen for disposal of Bhopal's waste goes up in flames

“The protests are more emotional than technical.” So said Ashok Panjwani, director of Bharuch Enviro Infrastructure Limited (BEIL), when the German remediation company GTZ questioned the ability of BEIL to safely handle the 345 tonnes of toxic waste from Bhopal slated to be incinerated there.
S P Gautam, chairman of notorious public body the Madhya Pradesh Pollution Control Board (MPPCB), later took up the attack on the rationality of survivors’ organisations: “The incinerator is of international standards and one of the best in the country, regardless of what NGO’s say”.
Months later still, the Gujarat government itself placed doubts on BEIL’s competence when, contrary to claims by the Madhya Pradesh authorities, it denied permission for the wastes to be sent to BEIL in Ankleshwar.
On April 4th, the question was settled once and for all. Materials recklessly stored for incineration at BEIL caught light resulting in, technically speaking, a massive toxic inferno.
Now, at last, MP authorities should recognise that the only possible destination for Dow’s toxic wastes is the home of the finest international disposal standards, namely, the seat of Dow’s business – the USA. Ed.

Devastating Indian Chemical Fire Under Control
Epoch Times, April 4th, 2008
After nine hours, firefighters finally brought a devastating fire under control in western India. The fire broke out at a chemical factory in India’s western Gujarat Province.
The fire was on the property of the Bharuch Enviro Infrastructure factory. The cause of the fire is still unknown.

BEIL: meeting their own ‘international standards’
Divisional Fire Officer R. M. Gamit told reporters, “The chemical waste from the factory was kept in a storage warehouse for disposal … We are still trying to ascertain the reasons behind the outbreak of the fire.”
Authorities put three villages in the vicinity on high alert. Disaster management officials have also installed devices in the surrounding area to measure damage to the environment. No casualties have been reported so far.
Divisional Fire Officer R. M. Gamit said the cause of the fire is not yet known. (NTDTV)”That fire is now under control,” said District Magistrate Anita Kanwar. “We had taken precautions regarding emissions from the fire in the surrounding villages. However, we did not need to evacuate any village. We had kept medical teams there on standby and they will continue to be there to keep the locals under observation.”

The huge fire at BEIL
Fire safety laws are lax in India. Many factories in congested urban areas allegedly handle hazardous material carelessly.

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