Prime Minister Narendra Modi on Thursday has tweeted to extend his condolences to the families of the people who lost their lives in the the fire that took place at a firecracker factory in Punjab. The fire took place in a three-storied firecracker factory in Batala in Punjab's Gurdaspur.
According to Gurdaspur Sub-Divisional Magistrate, Deepak Bhatia, at least 23 people have died, and 27 others were injured and many were feared trapped inside the debris. Ambulance and fire tenders were rushed to the spot.
The tragedy at a firecracker factory in Punjab is heart-wrenching. Deeply anguished due to it. My condolences to the families of those who lost their lives. I hope the injured recover at the earliest. Agencies are working on rescue operations at the site of the tragedy: PM— PMO India (@PMOIndia) September 5, 2019
The firecracker factory blast was so strong that three to four nearby buildings also collapsed. The blast also smashed the windowpanes of buildings that were up to 1 km away. A car and a bike were also destroyed in the blast. Teams of the National Disaster Response Force (NDRF) and the State Disaster Response Force (SDRF) carried out the rescue operation.
Chief Minister of Punjab, Captain Amarinder Singh, expressed his grief at the incident and has ordered a magisterial inquiry into the matter. The Punjab Government also announced Rs 2 lakh for the deceased and Rs 50 thousand for the injured immediately.
President of India Ram Nath Kovind also expressed his condolences to all those who had lost their lives in the blast and wished the injured a speedy recovery.
Saddened to learn about the loss of lives due to an explosion at a firecracker factory in Batala, Punjab. Condolences to bereaved families impacted by this tragedy and wishing an early recovery to those injured #PresidentKovind— President of India (@rashtrapatibhvn) September 4, 2019
Gurdaspur MP Sunny Deol also expressed sadness over the incident and said that the NDRF teams and officials from the local administration were taking part in relief works.
Saddened to hear about the news of blast in Batala factory.NDRF teams and local administration has been rushed for rescue operation.— Sunny Deol (@iamsunnydeol) September 4, 2019
Ambulances, fire tenders rushed from Gurdaspur and Amritsar. Gurdaspur DC Vipul Ujwal had reached the spot along with SSP Upinderjit Singh Ghuman. More than 100 policemen were on the spot as well as many passersby initially hindering the rescue process.
The reason behind the explosion is yet to be ascertained.