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Vizag Gas Leak : Andhra Pradesh HC Passes Slew Of Directions To State Authorities In Suo Moto Case

LIVELAW NEWS NETWORK
8 May 2020 1:30 AM GMT
Vizag Gas Leak : Andhra Pradesh HC Passes Slew Of Directions To State Authorities In Suo Moto Case
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The High Court of Andhra Pradesh has taken suo moto cognizance of the leak of 'Styrene' gas in Vizag, which resulted in a number of casualties.The Court noted that Styrene is notified as a dangerous substance under the provisions of the Environmental Protection Act and as per the Chemical Accident (Emergency Planning, Preparedness, and Response) Rules of 1996, certain crisis response...

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The High Court of Andhra Pradesh has taken suo moto cognizance of the leak of 'Styrene' gas in Vizag, which resulted in  a number of casualties.

The Court noted that Styrene is notified as a dangerous substance under the provisions of the Environmental Protection Act and as per the Chemical Accident (Emergency Planning, Preparedness, and Response) Rules of 1996, certain crisis response steps need to be taken, such as formulation of Crisis alert system, central crisis group, state crisis group all the way down to local crisis group. 

"It is a matter of enquiry and assessment that the provisions of the said Rules have been observed or not", the Court observed.

The Court acknowledged the swift steps taken by the Central Government and observed that the State Government may request for more staff from the NDRF if such requirement is felt.

The Court has directed the State Government to issue an order directing all private hospitals in Visakhapatnam to open for needy persons.

A bench comprising Chief Justice Jitendra Kumar Maheshwari and Justice Lalitha Kanneganthi directed  the Government to take "immediate steps" to  bring down the effect of gas leak by sprinkling water or other substances which may curtail further damage by  requesting deployment of fire services from nearby areas. Simultaneously, repeated gas leakage should be checked.

The State Government has been directed to appoint a Committee of officers not below the rank of Principal Secretaries to monitor the activities and file compliance report within a week.

The entire action of the Disaster Management Authority is required to be supervised by the Chief Secretary.

The State Legal Services Authority has been directed to appoint an appropriate officer from the District Legal Services Authority, Visakhapatnam to supervise the activities and the District Judge , Visakhapatnam may coordinate with State Officials on the issue. 

The Court has appointed Senior Advocate YV Ravi Prasad as Amicus Curiae in the case.

Earlier, the National Human Rights Commission and the National Green Tribunal had taken cognizance of the disaster caused by the leakage of Styrene gas from 'M/s LG Polymer Industries Pvt Ltd' at RR Venkatapuram in Vizag district during the week hours of Thursday.

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