Environmental Disaster: Analysis of NGT’s Order In the Assam Oil Well Fire Incident

Must Read

What is the Real Estate (Regulation and Development) Act, 2016?

The Real Estate (Regulation and Development) Act, 2016 (“RERA”) is an Act of the Parliament. It seeks to protect...

Should the Exorbitant Amounts Charged for RT-PCR Tests be Refunded?

Introduction A plea has been filed in the Honourable Supreme Court of India seeking a refund of exorbitant amounts charged...

Should CCTV’s be Installed in the Police Station?

Introduction In a recent judgment, the bench led by Justice Nariman issued directions to both the state and Union Territory...

A Legal Analysis of the West Bengal Political Crisis on IPS Deputation

The Ministry of Home Affairs (MHA) has recently summoned three IPS officers of West Bengal (WB). The decision was...

Explained: Postal Ballot for NRIs

At the end of November 2020, Election Commission sent a proposal to the law ministry to amend the Representation...

Explained: Constitutional Provisions and Legislations With Regards to a Person with Disabilities

The world celebrates December 3 as International Day of Persons with Disabilities (IDPD). This day is also called World...

Follow us

On the morning of May 27th, 2020, an Oil Well Located in Eastern Assam’s Tinsukia District witnessed a snuff out. It was due to the uncontrollable leakage of crude oil or gas from production. It took place due to machine failure. Oil India Limited (OIL) or Oil’s Bagjan Oilfield controls the well. The gas has been flowing continuously for 13 days following attempts to pump in water.

Maguri-Motagung Wetland is adjoined to the wetland, and Sai Khawa National Park is nearby to the oil well. The oil well fire affected around 1610 families and has destroyed the ecology of the area. The people living in nearby villages are in the relief camps. Some people even reported that the incident of fire was like earthquake-tremors.

Filing of PIL

Bonani Kakkar, an environmentalist, filed the PIL along with an Assam based NGO Wild Life and Environment Conservation Organisation. They preferred the application alleging failure of the Respondent Authorities (Oil India Limited ) in preventing the blowout of Baghjan 5 under the Baghjan Oilfield of OIL in Tinsukia District, Assam resulted in a massive fire. It caused irreparable loss to the region’s entire biodiversity and loss of life and property.


The incident resulted in a massive fire causing irreparable loss. It caused to the entire biodiversity of the region and loss of lives and property. The oil well was located near the Eco-Sensitive Zone (ESZ) of the Dibru-Saikhowa National Park. The gas is a mix of propane, methane, propylene, and other gases. It flowed with the wind and spread into the Park. According to the Applicant, it records over 40 mammals, 500 species of birds, 104 fish species, 105 butterfly species, and 680 types of plants.

Gangetic river dolphins, the national aquatic animal of India, have reportedly died as a result of the gas blowout. Numerous other endangered flora and fauna species were destroyed. The blowout has left behind vast volumes of residue as gas condensate which is a mixture of chemical compounds. These compounds are toxic for land and vegetation and are a known carcinogen. The blowout is not only dangerous to people’s safety but also has a significant impact on their lives. It mainly affects the people whose occupation is agriculture, fishing, and animal rearing. It is claimed that two firefighters died during the rescue process.

Protests around the State 

Protests have been raging all over the State because of the incident. Not only has it destroyed the area of flora and fauna but also affected many people’s lives through the incident. They are living in rescue camps leaving their house behind. The release of gas enormously impacts their health and worsens their living conditions.

Judgment and The NGT Order 

On June 24th 2020, The National Green Tribunal directed Oil India Limited (OIL) to deposit 25 Crores compensation with the District Magistrate, Tinsukia District Assam for the massive explosion that took place on June 9th,2020. The order states:

“In view of the prima facie case made out against OIL on the extent of damage caused to the environment and biodiversity, we direct the OIL to deposit an initial amount of Rs 25 Crores with the District Magistrate, Tinsukia District, Assam and shall abide by further orders of the Tribunal.”

The Bench comprised Justice SP Wangdi and Siddhanta Das. It created an eight-member committee to look into the matter and submit the preliminary report to Registry within 30 days.

The Bench directed the committee to examine:

  • The cause of gas and oil leak;
  • The extent of damage to humans, ecology and health hazard, caused to the public;
  • Any contamination caused to water, air and soil of the area of the oil well and its vicinity;
  • The extent of contamination of the Dibru river water due to the oil spill, impact on agriculture, fisheries and domestic animals;
  • Whether any mitigation measure was taken by OIL to offset the incidents such as the one in question;
  • Persons responsible for fire incidents and failure to prevent the incident;
  • Assessment of compensation for the victims. Cost of restitution of the damage caused to property and the environment;
  • Preventive and remedial measures.

It ordered that the next hearing will be on July 29th, 2020.


The decision taken by NGT is supportable. However, it is well-known that the amount of damage could not be determined in monetary terms. The incident costed the lives of two firemen which is tragic. The Prime Minister of India assured the people that support, relief, and rehabilitation will be provided.

Libertatem.in is now on Telegram. Follow us for regular legal updates and judgements from the court. Follow us on Google News, InstagramLinkedInFacebook & Twitter. You can also subscribe for our Weekly Email Updates. You can also contribute stories like this and help us spread awareness for a better society. Submit Your Post Now.


Please enter your comment!
Please enter your name here

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.

Latest News

Police To Decide on the Entry of Farmers To Delhi on Republic Day Says Supreme Court

While the Supreme Court heard a plea seeking an injunction against the tractor rally that is scheduled for January 26th, it held that it is the decision of the Delhi Police officers to see whether the protesting farmers should get entry into Delhi on Republic Day.

[Sushant Singh Rajput Case]: Republic TV & Times Now Hindered Investigation Probe Says Bombay HC

In November last year, the Court had reserved its judgement on the PILs that came from 8 former police officers from Maharashtra, lawyers, activists and NGOs, seeking restraining orders against the media trial in the Sushant Singh Rajput case.

Women Advocates Move To Supreme Court Against the Delhi HC Orders on Resuming Physical Hearing

Another writ petition has been filed by women advocates in the Supreme Court against the decision of the Delhi HC of directing the expansion of physical hearing of cases within the National Capital Territory of Delhi without giving an option to litigants to be represented by their lawyers virtually.

Gujarat High Court Allows Report Filed by Official Liquidator for Dissolution of the Company

The present report had been filed by the Official Liquidator for the dissolution of M/s AtRo Limited under the provisions of Section 497 (6)...

[WhatsApp Privacy Policy Row] It’s a Private App, Don’t Use It; Says Delhi High Court

On Monday, while hearing a petition regarding the privacy policy of WhatsApp, the Delhi High Court said, “It is a private app. Don't join it. It is a voluntary thing, don't accept it. Use some other app.”

Madras High Court Asks the State To Reconsider Number of Seats Allotted for Bcm Category

Mr. Shakkiya filed a Writ Petition under Article 226 of the Indian Constitution to issue a Writ of Mandamus. The petition sought to direct...

Gujarat High Court Directs To Register Name of Petitioners in the Society Records as Owners of Property, as per Will

A single-judge bench of Gujarat High Court consisting of Honourable Justice Biren Vaishnav, because probate wasn’t necessary and that the petitioners were entitled to...

If No Complaint Is Filed, No Further Orders Are Required To Be Passed: Telangana High Court

Excerpt In Matlakunta Sundaramma vs The State Of Telangana, on January 8, 2021, the Telangana High Court decided that there is no requirement of passing...

Gujarat High Court Allows Report Filed by Official Liquidator for Dissolution of the Company

The present report had been filed by the Official Liquidator for the dissolution of M/s AtRo Limited under the provisions of Section 497 (6)...

Parents of Road Accident Victim Entitled To Compensation: Delhi High Court

Justice JR Midha said, “Even if parents are not dependent on their children at the time of an accident, they will certainly be dependent, both financially and emotionally, upon them at the later stage of their life, as the children were dependent upon their parents in their initial years.”

More Articles Like This

- Advertisement -