Four persons, including a pregnant woman, were killed and at least nine sustained severe burns when a fire broke out following a gas pipeline blast near Moran in Sivasagar district in Assam early on Monday.
Official sources said the gas pipeline, belonging to Assam Gas Company Ltd and passing through Singrijan tea estate, got ruptured and caught fire at 3.40 am, quickly engulfing at least eight hutments. “People were caught unaware as they were fast asleep when the fire broke out. They hardly got any time to escape,” said Sivasagar SP B Kuligam.
The deceased have been identified as Jyoti Sabar (35), Michael Topno (30), Bhasan Sarma (35) and his wife Paras Sarma (28).
Assam Gas Company Ltd, a state-owned company, buys natural gas from Oil India Ltd and distributes it to different industries. The 12-inch pipeline that triggered the mishap used to supply gas to several tea factories in the district.