NTPC on Monday said it has fast tracked all modalities and procedures for distribution of compensation to the immediate families of those who lost their lives in the natural disaster that struck Tapovan project in Uttarakhand’s Chamoli District on February 7, even as rescue operation continued in full swing with high-end machinery.
While NTPC is extending a compensation of Rs 20 lakh to the immediate family of the contract labourers of the agency engaged in construction of the project, the Uttarakhand and Central governments have separately announced compensation package of Rs 4 lakh and Rs 2 lakh, respectively. Further, compensation against PF and Employees’ Compensation Act covered under statutory provisions of the workers in the range of Rs 5 lakh to Rs 15 lakh will also be made available.
A dedicated taskforce from NTPC has been working out the modalities including collating necessary information with regard to every missing worker and liaisoning with district administration in order to fast-track compensation distribution.
The rescue operation at NTPC’s Tapovan Vishnugad project continues in full swing, while extensive coordinated work is being carried out by multiple agencies to reach those trapped in the tunnel. Real time information is being shared with all agencies involved in the rescue operation to avoid any delays, the company said in a statement.
More than 325 personnel including engineers, officers, geologists, scientists, security officials from NTPC, THDC, CISF, UPNL and others are at the site and engaged in rescue operations. There is also continuous support from district administration, the ITBP, the BRO, the NDRF, the SDRF, the army, the state PWD, SJVN and RVNL, the statement added.
While dedicated teams from NTPC are managing the entire rescue operation behind the scene by assisting the rescue teams, the company airlifted machinery including high-end submersible slush removal pumps to increase the pace of operations. The diversion of river course from left bank to right bank and approach to de-silting basin from upstream is also being done. The diversion of river course is necessary to ensure that water from Dhauliganga doesn’t enter the tunnel.
So far, mucking in intake Adit Tunnel has reached 155 metres while a 300 mm diameter, 12 metre deep bore hole was drilled in Intake Adit to puncture silt Flushing Tunnel below Adit late on Sunday. The water level in the bore hole is under observations for further action.
NTPC said that the project stood like a rock and took much of the pact of the flash flood, thus helping save the nearby villages from the fury caused by unprecedented snowfall that triggered an avalanche in the valley. In addition, the NTPC engineering teams’ close coordination with rescue teams could help them comprehend the design of tunnels, thus helping them save 12 lives on Day One.
A public Information centre, lodging and boarding, food, and medical facilities are being provided by NTPC near the rescue site to kith and kin of those stuck inside the tunnel.