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Eight feared dead in Jharkhand mine mishap
September 29, 2005 22:09 IST
Last Updated: September 29, 2005 23:21 IST
At least eight persons were feared dead in a coal mine disaster at Central Coalfields Limited's abandoned mine at Rajarappa on Thursday, as two bodies were found during rescue operation, official sources said.
The mishap took place when a large chunk of coal collapsed during illegal mining in the abandoned mine, B K Sinha, public relations officer of CCL said.
Deputy Commissioner Rahul Purwar told newsmen that, so far, two bodies were recovered, while some more persons were said to be trapped in CCL's Section One colliery at Rajarappa. Six bodies, he added, were believed to be taken away by the relatives of the victims.
Rescue operations by both CCL and the district authorities were going on to locate the trapped miners, which eyewitnesses claim could be in double digits.
According to reports, over the years many labourers had lost their lives after being engaged by local contractors to extract coal illegally from abandonded public sector mines.
Such incidents go unreported as the victims' relatives either take away the bodies or leave them inside for fear of legal action, according to police.
The Jharkhand administration has, several times, asked the collieries to fill their abandoned mines with sand to avert such accidents. CCL officials, however, claim that they always fill up the mines before abandoning them.
The deputy commissioner said that official mining was taking place just above the mishap site, rescue work was delayed. The coal workers union and Jharkhand unit head of AITUC, Ramendra Kumar demanded stern action against the guilty.