The Telegraph
Since 1st March, 1999
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Out of pits, charred & dead
- Job letters given to family members of mine victims

Dhanbad, Sept. 8: Rescue workers today fished out the charred bodies of 45 miners who died after Wednesday evening’s explosion in a mine run by Bharat Coking Coal Limited (BCCL).

A search was on for five more bodies at the 17th level of the mine in West Jharia. Fifty miners, and not 57, were inside the mine when the blast occurred.

Soon after the bodies were taken out, the BCCL management gave appointment letters to family members of the deceased, besides announcing compensation of Rs 3 lakh each.

Coal India Limited (CIL) chairman Shashi Kumar has set up a three-member panel comprising company director (personnel) Mohammad Salimuddin, director (technical) Laxman Jha and managing director of CMPDIL Subrata Choudhary, to inquire into the mishap.

The panel would submit its report within a fortnight, chairman-cum-managing director of BCCL Partho Bhattacharya told The Telegraph.

Official sources said 57 miners had turned up to work on the second shift, which started at 4 pm, but four of them did not enter the mine and left without informing anybody. Three other miners managed to escape.

CIL officials said there were two explosions in the space of five minutes, followed by a blaze in the depths of the mine.

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