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Pakistan

Authorities launch probe into anchoring of ship with hazardous chemicals in Gadani

  • The Environment Protec­tion Agency has sealed the plot of Gadani shipbreaking yard, where the vessel was anchored for scrapping
  • Environment department official says if the mercury sludge is found in more than the authorized quantity then a case would be registered against the owner of the ship
Published May 27, 2021

(Karachi) The authorities have launched a probe after a ship containing hazardous chemicals anchored at the Gadani shipbreaking yard, local media reported.

Taking action on the presence of dangerous chemicals in the ship, the Environment Protec­tion Agency (EPA), Balochistan, has sealed the plot of Gadani shipbreaking yard, where the vessel was anchored for scrapping.

The EPA took samples of the material and sent them to different laboratories in Karachi for testing.

Meanwhile, the Lasbela deputy commissioner has ordered an investigation into the matter.

Commenting on the matter, Balochistan's Environment Depar­t­ment Deputy Direc­tor, Imran Saeed Kakar, said that the administration has sealed plot No-58 where the ship was brought for scrapping. He added that the owner of the ship has not been granted permission for scrapping.

He said the government will initiate legal proceedings and action after receiving reports of the samples from the laboratories. Kakar stated that if the mercury sludge is found in more than the authorized quantity then a case would be registered against the owner of the ship.

He pointed out that the plot would be sealed permanently and the owner would face legal action.

On May 26, a ship containing hazardous material, which was denied permission by India and Bangladesh to berth, was allowed to enter Pakistani waters despite a clear warning by Interpol.

The Interpol officials had asked the Federal Investigation Agency (FIA) to not allow the ship into the country as it contains 1,500 tonnes of mercury-mixed oil.

However, the ship was allowed to anchor at the Gadani shipbreaking yard for scrapping.

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