Balco chimney crash: Court rejects bail of Chinese engineersMarch 12th, 2010 - 12:11 am ICT by IANS
Raipur, March 11 (IANS) The Chhattisgarh High Court Thursday rejected the bail pleas of three Chinese engineers, arrested for their alleged role in the chimney crash last year at the Korba-based Bharat Aluminium Company Ltd (Balco) power plant that killed 40 workers.
A single bench of Justice Dhirenra Mishra rejected the bail applications of the engineers who were employed with the Shandong Electric Power Construction Corp (SEPCO). The court rejected the bail citing the “gravity of the offence and negligence committed by the SEPCO engineers”.
On Jan 11, project in-charge Wu Chunan and two other civil engineers were arrested in Korba town, about 240 km from state capital Raipur, and presented before a local court that sent them to judicial custody.
A district and sessions court at Korba town rejected their bail Jan 18 and then SEPCO employees moved the Chhattisgarh high court, based some 100 km from here.
Government officials say Vedanta Resources Plc-controlled Balco, in which the Indian government holds a 49 percent stake, had awarded SEPCO the contract of constructing two thermal power plants of 600 MW each at Korba.
Later, SEPCO outsourced the construction of a 257-metre chimney to Gannon Dunkerley and Company Limited (GDCL). The chimney had reached a height of 225 metres when it collapsed Sep 23 last year, killing at least 40 contracted workers.
The chimney collapse is described by the state government as the biggest industrial tragedy in Chhattisgarh. The government has already ordered a single-member judicial commission to probe the tragedy.
Tags: bail pleas, chimney, chinese engineers, chunan, civil engineers, construction corp, contracted workers, dunkerley, gannon, indian government, judicial commission, judicial custody, korba, local court, mishra, power construction, sessions court, shandong, thermal power plants, vedanta resources plc