Nagpur Solar Industries Blast Rocks Maha Assembly Session; Oppn Stages Walkout Demanding ₹50 L Aid To Kin Of Deceased Ones

Nagpur Solar Industries Blast Rocks Maha Assembly Session; Oppn Stages Walkout Demanding ₹50 L Aid To Kin Of Deceased Ones

The blast happened on Sunday morning and the dead included six women workers. What added to the goriness of the incident was that bodies of the nine victims were blown to smithereens.

Ramu BhagwatUpdated: Tuesday, December 19, 2023, 11:47 AM IST
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Nagpur Solar Industries Blast Rocks Maha Assembly Session; Oppn Stages Walkout Demanding ₹50 L Aid To Kin Of Deceased Ones | ANI

Nagpur: A powerful explosion resulting in the death of nine workers at a Solar Industries factory at Bazargaon near Nagpur provided enough ammunition to the combined opposition in both houses of the state legislature, which resumed proceedings on a cold Monday morning after an otherwise quiet weekend.

The blast happened on Sunday morning and the dead included six women workers. What added to the goriness of the incident was that bodies of the nine victims were blown to smithereens.

Here's Why Opposition Staged Walkout

In the state assembly the combined opposition staged a walkout demanding a compensation of at least Rs50 lakh each to the deceased and filing of an offence under Section 302 IPC against the owner-management for the death of the workers in the factory situated on Amravati road. Solar Industries is a leading private company in the defence sector. Besides supplying to Indian defence, it also exports products to several countries. Raising the issue, Leader of the Opposition Vijay Wadettiwar, group leader Nana Patole (both Congress) and Anil Deshmukh (NCP) who represents Katol constituency (in Nagpur District) in whose jurisdiction the factory falls, alleged that the private company had engaged workers on contract who were paid a meagre remuneration.

Looking at the seriousness of the blast and high casualties, the opposition demanded setting aside other business of the house and taking up the blast matter for debate on priority. They demanded a full fledged discussion and a detailed statement from the government with an assurance of adequate monetary compensation and pressing of homicide charges against the owner-management.

The House was informed that Chief Minister Eknath Shinde and both Deputy Chief Ministers, Devendra Fadnavis and Ajit Pawar, had visited the blast site. Wadettiwar and Anil Deshmukh had also visited; indeed Deshmukh was first to visit. Speaker Rahul Narvekar assured the house that he was instructing the government to make a detailed statement and a debate could take place, if needed, after the government statement. Not happy with his decision, the opposition staged a walkout.

Oppn Blames Govt And Solar Industries' Management

In the legislative council also the opposition attacked the government over the blast. Opposition legislators alleged that the workers were exploited by the Solar Industries as they were not paid wages as per state government rules.

NCP member Shashikant Shinde moved a point of information and shed light on the company's poor safety record. He pointed out that at least two previous incidents had taken place.

Expressing concern, he questioned the adequacy of the compensation provided by the company, which amounted to Rs20 lakh and an additional Rs5 lakh from the government. Shinde said that around 4.000 workers were employed on a daily wage basis amounting to a meagre Rs10,000 per month. He demanded permanent appointments for workers.

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