On May 7, several people were killed and many others affected after a major chemical gas leak at Visakhapatnam's LG Polymers industry in RR Venkatapuram village.
The styrene gas leak had killed at least eight people and thousands of others had fallen ill. People were rushed to King George Hospital after complaining of burning sensation in the eyes and breathing difficulties soon after the chemical leak occurred. Many were seen lying on the ground unconscious. Reportedly, the leak occurred at around 3 am.
On Sunday, the Andhra Pradesh High Court issued interim directions to completely seize the premises of LG Polymers. The High Court directed that none of the assets would be allowed to be shifted.
Established in 1961 as Hindustan Polymers to manufacture Polystyrene, the company was not functioning amid the lockdown. According to an earlier report by the New Indian Express, most of the pharma and related units were given permission as they fall under essential services category. NOCs were issued to 115 large industries. Only 20 industries such as LG Polymers, Asian Paints, Synergy Castings, Pidilite, were yet to resume operation.
Incidentally, the Vizag gas leak has also made people wary in other parts of the state. Last Sunday, residents of Krishna district's Jaggayyapet Mandal area protested outside a nearby chemical company named MS Greentech after experiencing a pungent smell in their surroundings.