3 kids die as mortar shell kept in store explodes in Arunachal Pradesh
The three children had gone to the store, to fetch some firewood.
Three children died after a live mortar shell, picked from an army firing range and stored in a house, exploded on Saturday, Arunachal Pradesh police said.
The incident happened in Chirang village in Anjaw district of Arunachal Pradesh. The village is near an Indian Army firing range.
According to Habung Hailyang, Superintendent of Police, Anjaw, the incident happened at 5.30 pm on Saturday at the residence of Shibsu Krong, a petty contractor.
Three children, including Krong’s two-year-old son, and two cousins aged eight and ten, who were living with the family, had gone to the store, to fetch some firewood.
“They seem to have accidentally picked up a mortar shell that had been stored there. The shell exploded, killing them on the spot,” said Hailyang. He said that the shell had probably been stored by the family for nearly a year and that they may not have known that it was a live shell.
Hailyang said that the villagers often go to the nearby firing range to pick up used shells which they sell either as scrap or melt to extract metals.
The police has registered a case of unnatural death and are investigating the incident.
Meanwhile, Arunachal Pradesh Chief Minister Pema Khandu expressed deep shock and grief over the incident and has announced a compensation of Rs 4 lakh to the next of kin from the Chief Minister’s Relief Fund.
According to a statement from the Chief Minister’s Office, Khandu cautioned the villagers asking them to avoid going to danger zones like the Army firing ranges even as he requested the Army to issue advisories to the locals.