16:10 GMT07 August 2020
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    New Delhi (Sputnik): An Oil India Limited gas well in the north-eastern Indian state of Assam was leaking for 14 days and caught fire on Tuesday, leading to the death of two people at the site. A large-scale evacuation was carried out in the nearby areas and relief camps were set up.

    Assam's chief Sarbananda Sonowal on Thursday ordered a probe into the massive fire that engulfed a natural gas-producing well of Oil India Limited (OIL) in the state's Tinsukia district.

    ​The investigation will look into alleged negligence on the part of company officials and the private well operator. The state has directed administrative officials to submit a report within 15 days.

    The chief minister's office told media that the probe will also help the government to determine how the tragedy unfolded and how similar accidents can be averted in future.

    While two firefighters lost their lives in the incident, the district administration evacuated nearly 7,000 people from the nearby areas of the gas well soon after the incident and 12 relief camps were set up.

    Two officials of the company have been suspended for negligence and a show-cause notice has been issued to outsourced private operator John Energy Limited, an Indian company.

    Meanwhile, a plea has also been filed in Guwahati High Court against OIL, John Energy, the Indian and the state governments for the loss of life and property due to the tragedy.

    Well Number 5 in the Baghjan area, which caught fire, is a purely gas-producing well that generates nearly 80,000 standard cubic metres of gas per day from a depth of 3,870 metres. It's one of the most productive gas reservoirs that OIL owns.



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    gas leak, State of Assam, India
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