Four workers were killed and one seriously injured in a mine accident on 25 October 2018 at Western Coalfields Limited’s (WCL) Neharia underground mine in the Pench region, Chhindwara district of Madhya Pradesh.
A day before the accident a Load, Haul, Dump (LHD) machine got stuck in the underground mine due to blasts carried out without following safety regulations. The next day, on 25 October at around 10.15 am, an advance preparatory team entered the underground premises to recover the LHD machine. While recovering the machine, the mine roof collapsed. Four workers were killed in the accident while one LHD operator was seriously injured.
The deceased have been identified as Ravi Shankar (excavator carrier operator), Ramprakash (LHD operator), Rajesh (maintenance worker) and Rafique (side discharge loader operator).
S Q Zama, secretary general of IndustriALL affiliate the Indian National Mine Workers Federation (INMF) said:
The method of mining was not in conformity with the statutory safety regulations. Deployment of personnel for supervision was also inadequate. Violations of various safety regulations are severe in this accident. We demand immediate enquiry of WCL’s internal safety organization and investigation by the Directorate General of Mine Safety. Authorities must ensure that such accident should not happen in future.”
The union has also asked for the report of the magisterial enquiry ordered by the Chhindwara district collector. Statutory compensation has been provided to the victims’ family.