Fire at factory in Delhi's Bawana: 17 feared dead; Arvind Kejriwal 'keeping close watch' on rescue operations

Seventeen people are feared dead in a blaze which broke out at firecracker factory in Delhi's Bawana area, according to several media reports.

Ten fire tenders have been pressed to the spot. Quoting a fire official, ANI reported that the fire has now been contained.

The Delhi Fire Service received a call about the fire at the factory around 6.20 pm.

CNN-News18 quoted chief fire officer Atul Garg as saying that five to six people are still inside the building. The police have so far confirmed nine deaths in the fire. The rescue operations are underway as more people are suspected to be trapped inside the factory.

According to an official, there is a rubber factory on the second storey above the firecracker factory.

North Delhi mayor Preety Agarwal rushed to the spot. "The factory falls in the Delhi State Industrial And Infrastructure Development Corporation (DSIIDC) area. Agarwal has rushed to the spot to take stock of the situation," a senior NDMc official said.

Meanwhile, Delhi chief minister Arvind Kejriwal posted a tweet saying that he was keeping a close watch on the rescue operations. The Delhi government has reportedly ordered an investigation into the blaze.

According to ANI, Union health minister JP Nadda has directed the health secretary to provide immediate assistance to victims and also requested the AIIMS trauma centre to be on alert.

In a tweet, Prime Minister Narendra Modi said that he was "deeply anguished" by the incident.

Congress leader Ashok Gehlot also offered his condolences.

On 16 January, a factory in Delhi's Udyog Nagar was gutted in a fire. According to Hindustan Times, the fire fighting operations went on for close to three hours. However, no casualties were reported.

Following the Kamala Mills tragedy in Mumbai — which claimed 14 lives on 29 December, 2017 —officials in Delhi had stepped up measures to ensure that fire and safety regulations are in place.

The New Delhi Municipal Council had also asked restaurants to abide by trade license conditions, fire safety norms and sitting capacity regulations or be ready to face cancellation of permits and sealing of premises.

With inputs from PTI

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Updated Date: Jan 20, 2018 22:39:06 IST