At least two persons were killed and 14 others injured when massive fire, following by a deafening blast, engulfed a factory in Igatpuri in Maharashtra’s Nashik district on Sunday, officials said.
The explosion and fire, reportedly in a boiler, in the Jindal Polyfilms Company’s plant at Gonde village, was reported around 11.30 a.m., as people were waking up after the New Year celebrations.
Local eyewitnesses claimed that at least 250 workers were working in the premises but a majority of them managed to escape to safety.
Firefighting teams managed to rescue at least 14 injured and recovered the bodies of two workers.
The condition of at least four of the injured is described as critical, as per a medical officer.
Nashik Collector Gangatharan D. and Superintendent of Police, Rural, Sachin Patil reviewed the situation.
Aound a dozen fire tenders from Igatpuri and Nashik city reached the spot to battle the conflagration.
Huge clouds of grey and white smoke were visible from long distances and the huge explosion shook many residents on the New Year Day in at least two dozen villages.
Chief Minister Eknath Shinde and Rural Development Minister Dada Bhuse – who is the Guardian Minister of Nashik district reached the tragedy site.
Shinde announced a compensation of Rs 5 lakh each to the families of the two deceased and that the government will near the full treatment expenses of the injured.
“This is a very big tragedy… I have ordered a high-level investigation into the incident,” he said.
Later, the CM and Bhuse along with other officials visited the local hospital where the injured are admitted and spoke with them.
Union MoS for Health Dr. Bharat Pawar was monitoring the situation from New Delhi even as the blaze continued to rage in the factory complex.