There has been no trace of the four officials who went missing on Monday following the pipeline burst
90 dedicated personnel have been pressed in to service to rescue the trapped staffers

There is no improvement of the situation at the flooded power plant in Assam’s Dima Hasao district where four officials remained missing since Monday morning.

The locals alleged lack of maintenance of the plant led to the tragedy on Monday.

NEEPCO general manager Debtosh Bhattacharjee on Wednesday said they have been able to lower the intake gate to substantial level leading to receding trend in the flooded project site.

“Once the water level goes down, we can start the rescue operation,” he said.

The locals, on the other hand, said that the NEEPCO authorities failed to lower the intake gate and that there is no receding trend in the water from the project site.

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A NEEPCO spokesman said that the pipe carrying water from the tunnel to the powerhouse burst around 4.30 am on October 7 and in the process, the isolating valve, meant to stop the water flow also got damaged, leading to the tragedy.

“The gate at the intake is being lowered by the emergency team of the NEEPCO,” she said.

“Simultaneously the dam level is lowered to mitigate the problem,” she further said adding that additional experts from NHPC and Bhakra have also been rushed to the spot.

“It is an unavoidable accident and the reasons are being investigated,” she added.

The Opposition Congress in Assam, however, blamed it to the Central government for not releasing the Rs. 200 crore approved in by the then Congress-led UPA government in 2014 for maintenance of the project.

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“Major repairing of the project was due in 2014. The pipeline expired its life span in 2014,” said senior Assam Pradesh Congress Committee spokesman Durga Das Boro.

“However, it could not be done as the BJP-led NDA government has not released the amount approved by the UPA government,” Boro added.

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