Injured recount blast horror at Amritsar hospital
Some of those injured in a firecracker factory explosion at Gurdaspur district’s Batala on Wednesday afternoon recounted the horror at Guru Nanak Dev Hospital (GNDH) where they were brought for treatment.
Seven of the injured were referred to GNDH by the Batala civil hospital as one of the factory owners, Amrit Singh, 32, was declared dead on arrival. The other six injured being treated at GNDH were identified as Joginderpal Singh (40), Sukhdev Singh (32), Vicky (38), Simran Kaur (20), Chandan (35) and Davinder Singh (30), residents of Batala town and its adjoining villages.
Simran Kaur said, “Our family lives right behind the cracker factory. At around 3pm, I heard a loud bang and it seemed there was an earthquake. I don’t know what happened after that. When I regained my consciousness, I was in hospital. I don’t know where my other family members are and what happened to them?”
Sukhdev Singh said, “I work as a mason. I along with some labourers was working near the factory when something hit my head. Then I heard a noise and then I fell unconscious. I don’t know what happened to those who were with me.”
“I was having tea near the factory when I heard a sound of bursting of crackers. I then came to know that the factory caught fire. When I reached the spot I found several people trapped under the debris. My friend Amrit, who was running the factory, was injured and we took him to hospital,” said Amrit’s friend Dawinder Singh, a Batala resident, who works in another cracker factory.
Hospital medical superintendent Dr Jagdev Singh Kullar said, “Chandan and Surinderpal have 70% and 80% burn injuries and their conduction is critical. The other four are stable.”
Dr Rakesh Sharma, who was leading the team of doctors, said, “GNDH is well equipped and we have sufficient units of blood of each group. A team of 50 doctors is treating the injured. The doctors are trained to handle the patients with burn injuries. The other staff and helpers will also work during night.”
Dr Kullar said, “Soon after the incident, I got a call from the officials of the district administration. I immediately cancelled the leaves of the doctors who were needed. The staff has been directed to remain present in the hospital in the night as more injured we are likely to be referred here.”