Oil Depot imperilling Jammu city

Should a mishap of unmanageable proportion first take place to move the State Administration plunge into action after pressing panic buttons and do the second part of the action, otherwise avoidable one that of relief and compensation process which unfortunately follow after any untoward incident takes place? Preventive measures, if taken in time to avert and ward off unforeseen exigencies and mishaps, are the inalienable and mandatory prerequisites of an administration worth the name. The same, very sadly is found in deficiency in Jammu and Kashmir Government through its administrative system as can be realised in the case of non -shifting of the Oil Depot from the Railway Station area despite knowing the potential hazards with its close proximity to the residential colonies.
Gandhi Nagar area and other associated localities in Jammu like Trikuta Nagar, Preet Nagar, Shastri Nagar, Nanak Nagar , Channi Himmat etc are grossly endangered due to a “fireball” existing in the shape of Oil Depot of companies near Jammu Railway Station and the authorities concerned are apparently least concerned about this problem, let alone formulate an action plan and deliberate upon it to give it a shape in due course and curate the shifting process. We learn , as a natural corollary, from what happens around or in our neighbourhood or even very far from us which brings in its wake, death, destruction and assets loss and devise measures so that any of that does not visit and harm us with its fury.
Readers may recall the unfortunate incident that took place in the year 2003 when due to a terror act of detonating an IED device just close to the main gate of Oil Depot at Jammu Railway Station in which besides severely damaging the oil ferrying truck, seven persons were injured. Again, the incident at Jaipur Oil Depot that took place a few years ago is still fresh in memories as even after 10 days’ struggling efforts to bring it under control and douse the fire proved ineffective. Incidents like these being a reminder of the lurking dangers do not result in motivating the Government to shift these Depots to some safer place away from the core city of Jammu.
Not only lacs of litres of costlier petrol, diesel and kerosene stored in huge tanks of the Depot would get scattered and lost in value in minutes in case of a mishap but shall be causing devastation in low lying areas as these tanks raised on sloppy lands are only 300 metres away from the main Jammu Railway Station. Sensing this trouble nearly two decades back, the then State Government had selected a site near Vijaypur in Samba district but due to some objections raised by the Army authorities due to there being a firing range and the objections raised also by the local MLA, the proposal had to be shelved and confined to cold storage.
We are, however, given to understand that near Bajalta, nearly 1000 kanals of land has been identified for this purpose. However, the paper work is going on, formalities required for getting clearance from various administrative layers are as usual “under progress”, queries are raised and clarified but as of now, shifting process is yet to fructify which we hope, shall receive proper attention from the Government in keeping with gravity of the matter coupled with the safety and the security aspects of the people in consideration.