National News

Toll Rises To 23 After Blast At Firecracker Factory In Punjab’s Batala

Gurdaspur: No less than 23 individuals have been killed and 27 injured after a large explosion on Wednesday at an unauthorised firecracker manufacturing manufacturing facility in a densely-populated residential space in Punjab’s Gurdaspur. A number of individuals have been feared trapped underneath the particles and rescue work continued until late within the evening.

The incident happened round four pm on the manufacturing facility positioned in a residential space in Gurdaspur’s Batala, Inspector Normal (Border Vary) SPS Parmar stated.

The affect of the explosion was such that the manufacturing facility was fully destroyed and close by buildings have been broken too. Window panes have been shattered and the roof of a few buildings got here down, information company PTI reported. An eyewitness informed PTI {that a} automobile landed in a drain as a result of affect of the explosion.

Locals stated the explosion was heard kilometres away.

“When I heard the loud blast, I fell down. When I gained consciousness, I found myself in hospital,” Batala resident Rajpal Khokkar stated.

One other man, Sukhdev Singh, informed PTI two others who have been with him to purchase crackers died within the blast.

Locals complained the firecracker unit was working illegally for a few years. It was manufacturing and storing crackers for a ‘nagar kirtan’ – a spiritual procession regarding the start anniversary celebrations of Sikhism’s founder Guru Nanak Dev – slated to succeed in the city late Wednesday night, information company IANS reported.

“The firecracker factory has been working in this locality for the many years. We have complained against the factory seven-eight times to the local administration, but no action has been taken against it,” an area resident informed the media.

He stated an identical blast occurred on this space in January 2017, leaving one individual lifeless and three injured.

Chief Minister Amarinder Singh stated rescue operations are underway with the District Collector and the Senior Superintendent of Police heading the aid efforts.

“Deeply anguished to learn of the loss of lives due to the blast in the firecracker factory in Batala. Rescue operations are underway with the DC & SSP heading the relief efforts,” he tweeted.

The chief minister additionally launched a magisterial inquiry into the explosion.

Gurdaspur MP Sunny Deol too expressed grief over the incident. “Saddened to hear about the news of blast in Batala factory. NDRF teams and local administration have been rushed for rescue operation,” Mr Deol stated in his tweet.

Groups of the Nationwide Catastrophe Response Drive or NDRF and the State Catastrophe Response Drive or SDRF are aiding rescue operations. Senior police and district administration are additionally current on the spot.

With inputs from PTI and IANS

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