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Fire accident at Auctus Pharma in Vizag causes huge loss and creates panic among nearby residents

Our Bureau, Hyderabad
Wednesday, October 10, 2012, 15:45 Hrs  [IST]

In a major fire accident that gutted a drug manufacturing unit in Jawaharlal Nehru Pharma City (JNPC) at Paravada in Visakahpatnam is said to have caused a huge loss of Rs.1.5 crores to the firm.

According to officials, the fire accident took place at Auctus Pharma Limited (APL) at midnight. It is believed that the fire was sparked by a short-circuit in the electrical panel of the production block-II at the plant and soon it spread to the generator room where drums containing diesel caught fire and triggered a mild blast.

APL is a multinational company which manufactures active pharmaceutical ingredients and drug intermediaries for domestic and international firms. The unit at JNPC produces Cetirizine Di HCL, Losartan Poptassium and flucozanale.

According to officials, three tanks containing mother liquid and two other tanks caught fire and some of the liquids also spilled out of the premises on to the road. The fire was brought under control within two hours.

Officials said that no one was injured as the premises were empty at the time of accident. But people living nearby JPNC Pharmacity in Tadi village were panicked and left their houses and ran away fearing a major disaster.

To control the rising blaze the authorities rushed in 3 fire engines from National Thermal Power Corporation (NTPC) and from Ramky Pharma City to the spot and controlled the flames.

Sources said that it took more than two hours for the fire tenders to bring the flames under control and in stopping the blaze from spreading to the reactors and averting what could have been a major disaster. It is learnt that there are more than 40 highly sensitive reactors in APL’s Vizag unit at the Pharma City.

Following the incident villagers gathered at the JNPC gate and held demonstrations demanding relocation of the village and seeking permanent rehabilitation measures. It is believed that some five pharma units in the Pharma City were too close to the village emanating unbearable stinking smell and causing discomfort for the villagers.


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