After the Ahmedabad Fire and Emergency Services (AFES) received over 300 calls about a mysterious foul odour, especially during evening hours, in the western part of the city, the Gujarat Pollution Control Board (GPCB) on Monday said it could be linked to a recent fire incident involving six-seven containers at the Inland Container Depot (ICD) Khodiyar.
The odour hung over the neighbourhoods of Bopal, Nehrunagar, Satellite, Prahladnagar and Bodakdev mainly, and got stronger at night. According to Ahmedabad Municipal Commissioner Vijay Nehra, GPCB officials confirmed that it was due to a fire incident at the Khodiyar container depot.
“Two days ago, after receiving a complaint, officials of the fire department took rounds of the affected areas the whole night. When they failed to find the cause of the smell, they informed the Gujarat Pollution Control Board,” he said.
“There was a fire on Saturday (May 2) morning at ICD Khodiyar. The same night everyone was in a dilemma where the foul smell was emanating from. While our teams were monitoring the situation, we came came to know that the source of the smell was ICD Khodiyar,” said AV Shah, secretary, GPCB.
“There is no need to panic. There was no chemical, which would affect respiratory health. We expect the gases to disperse in a day or two,” he added. The containers belonging to the Container Corporation of India had Ammonium Sulphate, Vinyl Suphone Ester, Tobias Acid and Hydrogen peroxide. These were imported by five different firms.
The GPCB official said the air parcel containing the gases that mixed in the air during the fire incident caused the odour, “Due to high temperatures, the odour was not experienced during the day. However, when temperatures dropped in the evenings, the odour returned. The intensity of the odour has reduced now,” he added.
Rajesh Bhatt, Additional Chief Fire Officer of AFES, said, “As long as we do not identify the source, it is difficult to confirm anything.” The official said the foul smell experienced in many parts of the city had “no connection” with the fire incident at ICD.
“Since Saturday, we received more than 300 calls complaining about a possible gas leakage, came from areas like Ambawadi, Satellite, Gota. These calls were not just limited to western Ahmedabad, it also came from places like Khadia and Kankaria on Sunday,” Bhatt added.
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