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BALCO Disaster probe time extended



Korba, April 24, 2011: Raman Singh government in Chhattisgarh has extended the time period of the judicial inquiry commission to submit its report on the Chimney disaster of the Anil Agrawal led BALCO at Korba for three more months.

The time period of the judicial inquiry has been extended by three more months and during that period the witnesses of the SEPCO and GDCL would be examined, officials said here today.

Chinese group Shandong Electric Power Construction Corporation (SEPCO) bagged the contract to construct a 275 metre long chimney of the 1200 Mega Watt Power plant of BALCO, the Indian subsidiary of the Vedanta at Korba.

However, SEPCO appointed Gannon Dunkerley and Company Limited (GDCL) to construct the chimney for Anil Agrawal led BALCO and during construction the partially built chimney collapsed on September 23, 2009 burying labourers under tonnes of concrete at Korba.

The state government officials claimed 40 labourers were killed in that incident.

After lot of criticism on the government action on the matter and alleged irregularities in the construction of the Chimney, the Chhattisgarh Government had constituted a judicial inquiry by a District judge rank officer Sandip Bakshi on April 2010 and it was asked to submit its report by July 2010.

Subsequently the time limit of the Commission was increased to October 2010. Seeing the pace of inquiry the time of the commission had been increased by six months to April 12, 2011 and now it had again been increased by three more months to July12, 2011.

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