The morning of 7th May was quite different from the days of the last few months when we were waking up with distressing increased data of COVID-19 cases with people suffering from hunger and extreme poverty. This morning we wake up with the flaming news of Vizag Gas leak tragedy that took place on Thursday dawn, killing 11 people. Entire twitter started trending with videos and news of people falling and crying on roads; children wandering unknowingly, people are getting unconscious anywhere, etc. At one side, there is a continuous hike in the number of corona cases, reporting highest surge and on another side, Vishakhapatnam is being clutched by the gas clouds.
A press briefing was done by NDRF, NDMA, and AIIMs assured that the overall condition in Vizag is under control. A sigh of relief was about to come in people when suddenly, two more same kinds of gas leakage news started brewing the air once again in the afternoon from Raigarh, Chhattisgarh and Tamil Nadu. As per reports, seven labourers while cleaning experienced a gas leakage at the Shakti Paper mill in Tetla village of Raigarh, Chhattisgarh. All of them were taken to a govt hospital nearby where 3 people are critical. Nearly at the same time, a boiler explosion took place at a public sector coal mining company in Cuddalore, Tamil Nadu, injuring seven people till now.
The consecutive similar incidents/tragedies where on one hand are storming the lives of people and on the other hand storming the scenario with a series of questions that are constantly infusing the intellectual minds. Are these tragedies just a coincidence or any hidden mystery is circulating? Although investigations have already started for Vizag tragedy but yet there are speculations steaming up. Chemical experts argued that styrene in liquid form is safe when kept below 20 degrees and the company stored it in liquid form in two tanks of 2,500 kl and 3,500 kl capacity. The leakage took place from 2,500 kl tank which stored 1,800 kl styrene in liquid form. Unless high-temperature conditions like fire or explosion, styrene cannot leak into the air. Then how could liquid styrene convert into gaseous substance without the presence of a high boiling point? Why these industries are not well-equipped to control such leakages, risking the lives so easily?
It is very much necessary for everyone to know the reality behind the tragedies that have mercilessly taken the lives of people who were already suffering the traumas and pains of the pandemic, lockdown, and many unseen challenges. One thing that keeps on brewing that whether these tragedies will ever solve or will remain unanswered like other past incidents.