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

Eight days after a pipeline burst of North Eastern Electric Power Corporation (NEEPCO’s) Kopili hydro power station at Umrangshu in Assam’s Dima Hasao district, NEEPCO CMD VK Singh on Tuesday said that properties worth Rs 600 crore (approx) have been damaged in the tragedy.

Singh said 90 dedicated personnel have been pressed in to service to rescue the trapped staffers.

“We have pressed 90 dedicated personnel to rescue the trapped staffers. We have been using the sophisticated instruments in the rescue operation,” Singh told Northeast Now.

He said that loose earth in the basement of a two-storey pump house of the project is causing hindrance in the rescue operation.

“All possible efforts have been made to rescue the trapped workers,” added the NEEPCO chief.

The trapped people include three NEEPCO workers and one civilian labour.

He admitted that the coal mining in the adjacent area was the major reason for the ‘accident’.

“We have earlier intimated Centre as well as the Assam and the Meghalaya governments on Kopili’s water turning acidic owing to drainage from the nearby coal mining sites…,” said Singh.

Rampant coal mining was going on surrounding the area for last several years.

He further said that it was in 2006 that the water turning acidic was first detected and since then NEEPCO has been raising the issue in different authorities.

“Although certain steps has been initiated, but it was not sufficient,” said Singh.

At least four officials were feared dead after a water supply line of the Kopili hydro electric project burst on October 7.

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