At least 10 workers are confirmed dead and over 40 of them trapped along with some machineries belonging to a private coal mining company Eastern Coalfields Limited (ECL) after a heap of mud caved-in at the entry point of Latmatia mines in Godda district of Jharkhand, a CISF official said on Friday.
According to police, the incident occurred during a shift change late on Thursday and rescue operation could not be started in the night due to darkness and fog.
"Rescue operation started from 6am on Friday morning. We are not sure as to how many workers and vehicles are trapped inside the mine. But, as per the information about 10-12 vehicles were operating inside the mine when the incident took place. Besides, there were some workers also. We are only focusing on saving the people trapped inside the mine,” Godda superintendent of police Hira Lal Chauhan said.
The locals said that there was crack in the heap of mud which collapsed and blocked the entry point of the mine.
Mining operations were taking place about 200 feet beneath the ground.
About 40 workers are suspected to be still trapped under the debris.
"Saddened by the loss of lives at a mine in Jharkhand. My prayers are with those trapped inside. Spoke to CM Raghubar Das on the situation," Modi said on twitter.
A National Disaster Rescue Force team from Patna has been rushed to the spot. The state government has been asked to provide chopper facilities to airlift those trapped inside the mine.