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Tue, 21 Jan 2020

Northeast Today

43 Dead In Fire At Luggage Factory In Delhi, Arvind Kejriwal Visits Site

43 Dead In Fire At Luggage Factory In Delhi, Arvind Kejriwal Visits Site
December 08
12:19 2019

NET Bureau

Forty-three people were killed when a fire broke out at a luggage manufacturing factory in a crowded area in north Delhi. Most of the people who died were labourers who were sleeping at the factory in Anaj Mandi on Rani Jhansi Road when the fire broke out at 5 am.

The cause of the fire — which was reported at 5:22 am — is not known, officials said, adding that over 50 people were inside the factory operating from a residential area when the fire broke out. Thirty fire trucks are at the site and have taken the situation under control. The fire is suspected to have started at the workshop of the bag manufacturing factory.

Delhi Chief Minister Arvind Kejriwal rushed to the site after meeting the injured at the hospital. “It is a very sad incident. I have ordered a magisterial inquiry into it. Compensation of Rs 10 lakhs each will be given to families of those dead and Rs 1 lakh each to those injured. The expense of medical treatment of those injured to be borne by the government,” he said.

Revenue Minister Kailash Gahlot saud that he has directed the district magistrate (central) to conduct an inquiry and submit a report within seven days.

The factory was operating in an area, whose narrow and congested lanes are lined with many small manufacturing and storage units.

“Most who’ve died were sleeping when the fire broke out and died due to asphyxiation,” Sadar Bazar’s assistant commissioner of police was quoted as saying by news agency AFP.

Chaotic scenes were witnessed at the site of the fire incident with relatives and locals rushing to the area. “I got a call from his friend informing that he has been injured in the incident. I have no clue which hospital he has been taken to,” said Manoj, whose brother was working in a handbag manufacturing unit operating from the premises.

Many people trapped inside were rescued and rushed to RML Hospital, LNJP and Hindu Rao Hospital, fire officials said. Some of the people were brought dead to LNJP hospital. Doctors at the hospital confirmed smoke inhalation as the primary cause of the death. Some of the bodies were charred, sources reported.

The traffic police have asked people not to use Rani Jhansi flyover near New Delhi railway station as the road has been closed due to the incident.

Today’s incident is the worst fire tragedy seen by the city since a similar incident in Bawana last year in which 17 labourers were charred to death.

Many factories and small manufacturing units in big Indian cities are often located in old, cramped quarters of the cities, where the cost of land is relatively cheaper.

Such units often also serve as sleeping quarters for poor, mostly migrant labourers and workers, who manage to save money by sleeping overnight at their workplaces.

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