Belavatha Mystery Fire: Hazardous soil to be removed from accident site

Mysuru: The Karnataka State Pollution Control Board (KSPCB) has decided to shift the hazardous material and soil that has been dumped on a private land at Shyadanahalli near Belavatha in the outskirts of the city.

It may be recalled that 14-year-old Harshal was killed and his friend Manoj sustained severe burns after they accidentally stepped on the hot soil in this area in April.

Tasked with ascertaining the cause of fire, the KSPCB has now decided to cleanse this area by clearing the hazardous soil. The process will involve excavation using heavy machinery where the land will be cleared of all  harmful chemicals.

Speaking to Star of Mysore this morning, Lingaraju, Senior Environment Officer, KSPCB Mysuru Division, said “Due to rain since last month, the temperature of the land and soil in the vicinity of the accident which was 110 degrees Centigrade has now come down drastically. We will excavate the land, clear hazardous chemicals and only after that we will declare the area safe.”  

Meanwhile, the 10-member Technical Committee constituted by the KSPCB to probe the fire incident, is yet to submit its report. The committee is chaired by B.S. Jai Prakash, Vice President, Academy of Certified Hazardous Material Manager, India Chapter, Bangalore Institute of Technology,Bengaluru.

Reacting to reports in a section of media that the committee has submitted the report and has indicated that indiscriminate dumping of toxic waste by industries was the reason for fire, Lingaraju said that the committee will visit the site on June 11 (Sunday).

“The committee members will be arriving in Mysuru tomorrow evening and will visit the place on Sunday. The report is likely to be presented to the KSPCB early next week,” he said.

Even Deputy Commissioner D. Randeep has clarified that the Karnataka State Pollution Control Board Technical Committee has not submitted any report to the District Administration as reported by a section of the media.