3 charred to death as Barnala foam factory godown goes up in flames
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3 charred to death as Barnala foam factory godown goes up in flames

According to the police, the victims were reportedly having their meal when the incident happened. Punjab CM Captain Amarinder Singh has sought a detailed report from the Barnala deputy commissioner into the incident and announced an ex gratia of Rs 1 lakh each to the next of the kin of the deceased.

india Updated: Dec 05, 2018 09:29 IST
HT Correspondent
HT Correspondent
Hindustan Times, Barnala
fire at barnala factory,barnala foam factory,punjab
Smoke billows from a foam factory in Barnala on Tuesday, December 4, 2018.(Sanjeev Kumar/HT Photo )

Three labourers were burnt alive in a fire triggered by an explosion inside a godown of a foam-manufacturing unit at Uggoke village of Punjab’s Barnala district on Tuesday. While two workers were injured, many others had a narrow escape as they managed to come out of the building in time.

The reason of the fire could not be ascertained. The factory owners have been booked.

Chief minister Captain Amarinder Singh has sought a detailed report from the Barnala deputy commissioner into the incident and announced an ex gratia of Rs 1 lakh each to the next of the kin of the deceased.

Thick, dark fumes were seen coming out from the godown even as firemen from Barnala, Bathinda, Sangrur and Mansa struggled to douse the flames. The mainshed of the godown collapsed in the explosion. Barnala senior superintendent of police Harjeet Singh said: “The deceased have been identified on the basis of the gate register that factory maintains. They are Jagjit Singh, 27, of Gill Kothe village, Sadhu Singh, 33, and Sikander Singh, 22, both residents of Cheema village.” All victims were reportedly having their meal when the incident occurred.

Fire officer Gurjeet Singh said: “The firm never applied for a fire safety certificate to us directly or through Punjab Pollution Control Board.”

Sehna station house officer Shamsher Singh said: “We have registered a case against factory owners Varinder Kumar, Jatin Singla, Vijay Bansal and Dimple Dhawan under sections 304 (punishment for culpable homicide not amounting to murder) and 285 (negligent conduct) of the Indian Penal Code on complaint of Baldev Singh.”

Police have not made any arrests so far. One of the firm’s partners, Jatin Singla, was rushed to the Dayanand Medical College and Hospital, Ludhiana, in state of shock. The factory, engaged in manufacturing foam sheets, was set up recently.

Deputy commissioner Dharam Pal Gupta said, “The SDM will prepare a report of the incident and I will forward it to our higher authorities.” The CM, meanwhile, has asked the DC to conduct a thorough probe to ascertain the fire cause and suggest remedial measures to prevent recurrence of such incidents in the future. The DC, along with the SSP and the SDM, also visited the site and met the victims’ families.

First Published: Dec 05, 2018 09:29 IST