New Delhi, Feb 12 (efe-epa).- At least 13 people were killed and 26 were injured on Friday in an explosion at a firecracker producing factory in the southern Indian state of Tamil Nadu, in the latest industrial disaster in the country.
“The explosion resulted in the death of 13 people and 26 others were injured,” P Perumal, the superintendent of police for the city of Virudhunagar – where the incident took place – told EFE.
He said that the incident occurred around 1.30 pm, adding that the initial probe suggested that workers at the factory were mixing various chemical components needed to produce firecrackers when the explosion took place.
Perumal said that the fire had been extinguished.
Indian Prime Minister Narendra Modi expressed his condolences to the victims’ families in a statement and announced monetary compensation for the people affected by the tragedy.
Fires, building collapses and other accidents are common in India owing to the often precarious condition of infrastructure and a lack of maintenance, factors that are aggravated by corruption and illegal practices within the construction sector.
In January, 24 people were killed after the collapse of a shelter at a municipal crematorium in north India during a funeral, after which hundreds of locals had protested against the poor quality of municipal construction.
During the same month, 10 newborns were killed in a fire at a hospital in western India, again resulting in criticism over the lack of security measures.
According to the latest official data available, in 2018 India witnessed 13,099 fire incidents in government buildings, schools, hostels and other places, killing 12,748 people while 777 were injured. EFE-EPA