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Engineer burnt in power unit blast dies

Durgapur, Sept. 14: One of the seven persons injured in yesterday’s blast at a transformer in the state-run Bakreswar thermal power plant has died.

Engineer Dipak Lohar, 40, who worked for a private agency responsible for the plant’s upkeep, succumbed to 90 per cent burns this morning at Durgapur’s Mission Hospital, where he had been admitted along with two technicians and four engineers.

The four engineers are employees of West Bengal Power Development Corporation Ltd (WBPDCL), which runs the plant. But the technicians, like Dipak, work for the contractor, the Bakreswar-based Techs. All of them are stable.

Dipak’s father Shankar Lohar, 67, who spent all of last night at the hospital, broke down on seeing his son’s body.

“Dipak was the second of my three engineer sons and had been working at the plant since 1999. He was staying at Bakreswar with his wife and four-year-old daughter,” said Lohar.

Dipak’s widow Rinku had not been informed of his death till this evening. “I don’t know how to break the news to my daughter-in-law,” sobbed Lohar.

The retired mathematics teacher of a school run by the railways-owned Chittaranjan Locomotive Works sought a job for his daughter-in-law when WBPDCL chief Krishna Gupta visited the hospital today.

Gupta did not make any immediate promises. “The death is very unfortunate but Dipak Lohar was not a WBPDCL employee. We can’t promise any job or monetary help right now. We will discuss the matter with his family shortly,” Gupta said.

Leaders of the Citu and Trinamul-affiliated unions at the plant, who trooped to the hospital today, echoed Shankar’s job demand and sought a probe into the explosion. “We demand a job for at least one member of Dipak Lohar’s family,” said Subhas Chandra Pakhira, secretary of the Citu-affiliated union. Gupta said a probe had been ordered.

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