CBIC asks Customs officials to check warehouses for hazardous substances
−− The direction to officials for immediate action is made in light of an explosion in Beirut port caused by ammonium nitrate which went off on Tuesday, leaving more than 100 dead and thousands injured
Aug. 7, 2020
The Central Board of Indirect Taxes and Customs (CBIC) has asked Customs officials to comb through all warehouses to see if any explosive material is stored and to ensure that they meet all safety norms.
The direction to officials for immediate action is made in light of an explosion in Beirut port caused by ammonium nitrate which went off on Tuesday, leaving more than 100 dead and thousands injured.
CBIC directed officials to immediately verify and confirm within 48 hours that any hazardous and explosive material lying in warehouses and ports across the country meets all safety and fire standards and presents no danger to life and property, the indirect tax authority said in a tweet.
"This precautionary step has been taken in view of the recent incident of an explosion in a foreign country caused by such material," CBIC said without naming Lebanon.
The Beirut explosion also caused extensive damage to buildings in the port city. Ammonium nitrate, which has been associated with industrial accidents in the past, is mainly used as a fertilizer.
NDTV reported on Thursday that concerns have been raised about nearly 700 tonnes of the explosive chemical that has remained in storage for years on the outskirts of Tamil Nadu capital Chennai. The report said quoting officials that an e-auction to dispose of the chemical was “in advanced stages". The large consignment of the chemical was meant for a group in the fireworks capital of India – Sivakasi, the report said.
India is a major trader in petroleum, natural gas and pharmaceuticals.
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