Friday, July 17, 2009

Nalco implements anti-Naxal security measures

Statesman News Service

KORAPUT, 17 JULY: In the aftermath of the Naxal attack on 12 April, Nalco has further strengthened its security measures in the bauxite mining areas in the Panchpatmali Hills in Koraput districts. Security arrangements have also been augmented at most the vulnerable points, like the magazine house, where explosives are stored.

CISF personnel numbers in the bauxite mines have been increased from 89 to 197 jawans. Special emphasis has been laid on the fortification of the magazine area by providing a multi-layered protection system, using chain links, concertina, barbed wire, power fencing and brick walls.

As the construction of a permanent barrack, or any construction in the vicinity of the magazine house, is strictly prohibited, the CISF jawans have been provided with well furnished rest sheds, near the magazine house, which are equipped with lighting systems, wall mounted fans, exhaust fans, air coolers and vinyl flooring to improve the living conditions for jawans deputed to safeguard the explosives.
Besides this, two new well-furnished sheds with cushioned folding beds, fans, lights, and toilets have already been installed. These sheds are similar to the ones used by defence personnel. An uninterrupted power supply has also been provided to the sheds used by CISF jawans, and an aquaguard with a cooling system bas been installed to provide safe and clean drinking water. The above measures have been reviewed and found to be satisfactory by the CISF authorities, Nalco sources said. Permanent barracks in two blocks, with all the required facilities, exist, 700 metres from the magazine house. In addition to the above facilities, Nalco has also drastically reduced the storage of explosives at the magazine house. The stock of explosives is currently kept at the barest minimum of explosives necessary for about four to five days work. Nalco is now exploring the possibility of using “blast free” mining methods, where no explosives are used. With these measures, the Navratna PSU hopes to significantly improve the security systems, reduce the Naxal threat, and carry out its mining operations in a secure environmen

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