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State slumbers as oil spill bomb ticks away at Mormugao

State slumbers as oil spill bomb ticks away at Mormugao

18 May 2017 No comment 31 hits

Panaji: Lack of political will and disregard for the environmental fall out of an oil spillage are among the main reasons behind the state's half-hearted response to the partial sinking of the 60,000 deadweight tonne floating dry dock and passenger vessel MV Qing at Western India Shipyard Limited, said agencies overseeing the issue.

Mormugao Port Trust, Coast Guard and Goa State Pollution Control Board have responded to the partial sinking of the floating dry dock at Western India Shipyard, but aside from placing oil spill booms and several on-site inspections, no action has been taken.

Coast Guard officials pointed out that for a year, the cruise passenger vessel M V Qing had been lying grounded on the sea bed with tonnes of oil laced water flooding the inner holds of the vessel.

"There is a huge amount of seawater and oil in the ship. And the dry dock is not supposed to have fuel on board. If this happened 12 nautical miles off the coast, the Coast Guard would have immediately swung into action, but this is MPT's jurisdiction," a livid official said.

MPT on its part, had filed a complaint against Western India Shipyard and initiated legal proceedings against the promoters of the shipyard, which had turned bankrupt.

On its part, Goa Pollution Control Board inspected the floating dry dock to assess the damage and threat of an oil spill. "The state is in the process of issuing directions to MPT. The tank is full of oil and this has to be removed," a source said.

As a precautionary measure, oil booms have been placed around the floating dry dock and the oil dispersant unit has also been placed on standby near the dry dock.

Source: State slumbers as oil spill bomb ticks away at Mormugao

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