Court to hear plea against oil depot Jan 23

Last Updated: Thu, Jan 17, 2013 09:40 hrs

New Delhi, Jan 17 (IANS) The Delhi High Court will hear Jan 23 a plea from villagers opposing the building of a petroleum depot near their homes in west Delhi alleging it would expose them to risks.

Appearing before Chief Justice D. Murugesan and Justice V.K. Jain, advocate Indira Unninayar demanded that the matter be heard urgently as the people of Tikri Kalan village faced danger.

She said that after the Jan 5 fire at the Hazira plant of Indian Oil Corp in Gujarat, urgent steps needed to be taken immediately to shift the petroleum storage installation from the village.

The court had earlier issued notice to Hindustan Petroleum Corp and the National Disaster Management Authority.

The petition by Tikri Kalan villagers sought direction to government agencies not to allow the storage depot, alleging it would expose them to risks in case of fire, explosion or accident.

The villagers alleged that the petroleum company had ignored the safety norms.

According to them, the petroleum storage tanks of Hindustan Petroleum are located only 1,440 feet (440 metres) from their houses.

Accusing Hindustan Petroleum and the authorities of "merely paying lip service regarding safety", the petition said the oil company had ignored the safety steps proposed by the M.B. Lal Committee.

The Lal Committee was set up by the petroleum and natural gas ministry to probe a fire at Indian Oil's storage depot in Jaipur in October 2009.

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