Bhubaneswar, Sept 30 (LocalWire): The National Human Rights Commission has issued notices to the state government and the Union shipping ministry asking them to furnish reports on suspected oil spill from the Malaysian ship stranded off Chilika coast on 7 August.
The vessel was stocked with 7, 3,000 litres of diesel, 1000 litres of lubricant oil and 200 litres of hydraulic oil which was later withdrawn from the vessel.
Acting on the petition of Rights activist Akhand, the NHRC panel directed these authorities to file an action taken report within four weeks.
There is likelihood of oil spillage from the ship, which is a threat to the eco-sensitive coastal zone of Chilika lake and the Odisha coast.
The ship carrying cargo from Mongla Port, Malaysia had unloaded its shipment in Bangladesh and was on its way to Vishakhapatnam to pick up new cargo when its machines malfunctioned.
Caught in a storm in the Bay of Bengal the ship drifted towards Odisha before landing near the mouth of Chilika lake at Rajhans, a thin stretch of sand separating the Chilika lagoon. The place where it landed is about 1 km away from the Chilika mouth.
There were eight people in the ship including seven Malaysians and one Indian. ‘The Government has not taken prompt action to remove oil and the vessel. It takes one month to initiate the process of extracting oil from the cargo,’ alleged Akhand.
‘Harming the environment and sea have a huge impact on humans.
Here also human rights of the people are violated by the inaction of the authorities.
The fishermen living in and near the lake and near the sea coast were worried as the oil slick would badly effect their livelihood.’ argued the petitioner.
He also demanded an action against the owner of the cargo ship.
‘There should be an inquiry about how it moved towards Odisha coast and whether the ship has valid registration, fitness and legal permission for transportation,’ said Akhand.