The shipping ministry has sought a detailed report on the leakage of chlorine gas from a cylinder inside the Mumbai Port Trust compound early Wednesday in which 59 people have been taken ill.
"There was leakage of chlorine gas from one of the cylinders kept at Hay Bunder area of Mumbai Port Trust. These cylinders have been kept in that area which is meant for storage of hazardous goods for the past few years," the ministry said in a statement, adding that it is "closely monitoring the situation".
At about 3.30 a.m. on Wednesday, leaking chlorine gas affected nearly 59 people of the nearby Lal Bahadur Shastri Nautical Institute and a police station in the Sewri area.
"All the 59 affected persons were evacuated and have been admitted to three Mumbai hospitals - Port Trust Hospital, JJ Hospital and KEM Hospital - where they are receiving medical attention," the statement said.
"Seven out of those admitted are in ICU but their condition is said to be stable. No death has been reported as per discussions with deputy chairman, Mumbai Port Trust," it said.
"As per the records of Mumbai Port Trust, these cylinders were empty. Mumbai Port Trust is checking its records to find out whether any action had been taken for disposal of the hazardous material in the past," the statement said.
"The situation is presently under control, and chairman, deputy chairman, traffic manager and other senior officials of Mumbai Port Trust are at the site, where relief and rescue works are being undertaken," it added.