Bokaro, Nov 29 (IANS) Four people who were trapped for nearly 90 hours in an illegal coal mine in Bokaro district of Jharkhand, came out alive miraculously on Monday morning.
Narrating the ordeal, they said they kept digging for hours to find a way out of the coal mine. They were carrying torches which came handy as there was complete darkness inside the coal mine, not even a shade of sunlight. They lit one torch at a time to keep the battery going for a longer period of time. After digging for several hours, they finally managed to find a way out.
All four of them said they drank dirty water in the mine to keep themselves alive.
They had entered the coal mine under Chandankiyari block of Bokaro district at around 9 a.m. on November 26 to extract coal illegally, but got trapped inside after the mine shaft collapsed suddenly.
Laxman Rajwar, Ravana Rajwar, Bharat Singh and Anadi Singh, all residents of Tilatand village of Chandankiyari, are those who came out alive after fighting a battle with death for 90 hours.
Hundreds from several villages in the area illegally extract coal from the coal block in Parvatpur which has been closed for years. This coal block belongs to BCCL, but due to various reasons, the company has stopped mining here for the past several years.
After these four people got trapped, villagers raised an alarm, and the local police and BCCL officials reached at the spot. The next day i.e. on November 27, Bokaro Deputy Commissioner Kuldeep Chaudhary and SP Chandan Jha ordered an inquiry into the matter.
The rescue team of BCCL was also called, but they refused to do anything in view of the dangerous condition of the mine. On the third day on Sunday, 28 November, a team from NDRF reached and started the rescue operation, but it failed.
On Monday, the NDRF decided to excavate and before they could do so, all the four came out of the mine on their own, sending a wave of happiness in the entire village. On receiving this news, Chandankiyari MLA and former minister Amar Kumar Bauri also reached at the spot. A medical team was called for the health check-ups of all four, but the locals opposed and the team had to return.
Their families feared that police action may be taken against the four for illegal mining.
They said they gave up all hopes of coming out alive, but when they really came out, the news spread like a wilfire on Monday morning, and a wave of happiness swirled in the area.