Long-pending Ponda STP finally claims one life

* While one worker drowned, another was rescued.
* Kavlem- Ponda Locals demand a thorough inquiry into the matter

Goemkarponn desk

PONDA: In a tragic incident, the work on long pending Ponda 15 MLD Sewerage Treatment Plant work claimed one innocent life while cleaning a sewerage tank, and another worker was rescued.
According to Ponda Police, two workers were cleaning a 6-meter deep sewerage chamber located near Kapileshwarim–Kavlem underpass at around 6 pm when suddenly one worker Shubham Gopde (21), a resident of Maharashtra was, drowned in the chamber. In contrast, another worker Shabuddin (22) from Kolkata, was rescued and shifted to Sub-District Hospital.
The locals at Kavlem demanded a thorough probe by Ponda Police, including whether proper safety equipment and proper supervision were done while conducting the risky work.
PSI Rashmi Baidkar, who conducted the Panchanama, said they received a phone call from Ponda Hospital informing them that one patient was brought dead, following which Ponda PI and PSI rushed to the spot.
She said the deceased was working in a sewage sump and got drowned in sewage water while working inside the sump.
She said the generator engaged for pumping water from the chamber suddenly broke down, following which the natural water flow of springs inside the chamber increased due to which Shubam was drowned.
The workers working at the site said the Shubam fell into the chamber while entering the chamber.
Locals questioned whether any safety equipment was given to them and also asked whether the supervisor was present at the site when these two workers were working in a vast chamber.
The Ponda Locals said all sewerage chambers get filled with natural spring water within a short period as hills surround Ponda with rich water resources.
It may be recalled it’s now six-year the work on Ponda STP is progressing. Around 90 per cent of work is completed, and 10 per cent of employment at Daag and Kapileshwarim was delayed due to basalt rock formation.
The locals in Ponda and Kavlem demanded to complete the work at the earliest and even stop the ongoing work before 15 May, considering the arrival of monsoon, which could pose a risk to locals. The locals said they have been suffering for six years due to bad roads, which worsened due to sewerage works.
Meanwhile, the Kavlem- Kapileshwarim Locals said it’s the past six years, the chambers are dug, and roads are blocked, which are deteriorating in rains, so they demanded to complete the work at the earliest.

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