Blast in SAIL's Bhilai plant kills at least six: police official

NEW DELHI (Reuters) – A fire in a gas pipeline at a plant of Steel Authority of India Ltd’s in Chhattisgarh on Tuesday killed at least nine people, the company said. “Nine persons have lost their lives and 14 are undergoing medical treatment,” state-run SAIL, one of India’s biggest steel producers, said in a statement. The fire, which occurred during a scheduled maintenance job at its Bhilai plant, has now been controlled, SAIL said. There was no immediate comment from the company on whether production was affected. “It is very difficult to say how many more have died, as some bodies are charred,” a police official, who declined to be named because he was not authorised to speak to media, told Reuters. Shares of SAIL fell as much as 4.2 percent to a near one-year low on the news. Bhilai Steel Plant is India’s sole producer and supplier of rails for Indian Railways, and a major producer of a large variety of wide and heavy steel plates and structural steel, according to the company’s website. The plant has annual steel production capacity of 3.153 million tonnes, with products including wire rods, according to SAIL.

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