A 75-year-old farmer, Prem Chand, reportedly died in a fire caused by burning of paddy stubble, in Ambala district of Haryana on Friday.
In his complaint to the police, Prem Chand’s son Munish has blamed their neighbour Arun and his father Satpal.
According to Investigating Officer Harvilash Singh, paddy stubble was being burnt in a three-acre field belonging to Satpal and Prem Chand, when the fire spread to another neighbour’s sugarcane field.
“Munish told us that the accused called Prem Chand to extinguish the fire… He suffered serious burn injuries,” said Singh.
According to sources, Prem Chand was admitted to a government hospital in Naraingarh with 80 per cent burn injuries. He was later shifted to the Government Medical College and Hospital (GMCH) in Chandigarh, where he died on Friday evening.
Sources said the accused blamed Prem Chand for setting the paddy stubble on fire, but the latter’s family denied the charge.
An FIR was registered on Saturday, based on Munish’s complaint. Singh said they conducted raids on Sunday, but could not trace Satpal or Arun.
The burning of agricultural waste in open fields is banned under the provisions of the Air (Prevention & Control of Pollution) Act, 1981. Till last week, as many as 674 cases of stubble burning were detected, and Rs 7.35 lakh collected as penalty from farmers, in Haryana after a campaign was launched on September 22.