45 abandoned borewells sealed in Punjab



Within hours of Punjab Chief Minister Amarinder Singh's orders for closure of all open borewells, 45 of them have been sealed in a bid to prevent recurrence of the tragic incident in which a two-year-old boy died after been trapped inside a borewell for 108 hours, officials said on Wednesday.

Deputy Commissioners have submitted reports on the status of the borewells in their respective districts to the Chief Minister, who had sought details on open borewells, with directions for their immediate closure.

The reports indicate that of the 45 borewells sealed so far, 26 were located in Fatehgarh Sahib district -- 13 each in Bassi Pathana and Khera blocks.

Another eight were closed in Mansa district, three each in Patiala and Kapurthala, two in Gurdaspur district and one each in Ropar and Hoshiarpur districts.

In Ropar, where 19 borewells were reported to be lying unattended, one has already been covered and the process to close the rest was on, an official statement said.

Ferozepur, Faridkot, Muktsar Sahib and Taran Taran districts were found free of any open borewells.

Taking serious note of the Sangrur incident in which the child, Fatehveer, had failed to survive his prolonged ordeal inside a borewell, the Chief Minister had, on Tuesday, asked the Disaster Management Group, headed by the Chief Secretary, to finalise a set of standard operating procedures to check and prevent such incidents in future.

Amarinder Singh had made it clear that he did not want any more lives to be lost in the state in future on account of open borewells. IANS