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Four persons were today arrested in connection with the mishap at an oil mill in Maharashtra’s Latur district even as the death toll climbed to nine with two more bodies being recovered from a tank in the factory. State Labour Minister Sambhaji Patil Nilangekar visited the mishap site last night. He said the mill would be sealed and they were trying to find out if a case under IPC section 302 (murder) could be filed in the incident.
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Four persons were arrested in connection with the incident, including Kirti Oil Mill’s owner Kirti Bhutada, Latur Police said.
Seven workers had died yesterday after inhaling poisonous gas while cleaning a tank at the mill in Latur.
Two more bodies were recovered from the tank late last night, a fire brigade official told PTI over phone.
The fire brigade operation was called off at 3 AM today after recovery of the last body, he said.
On Monday, some workers had fallen unconscious while cleaning the tank at the factory in Latur MIDC (Maharashtra Industrial Development Corporation).
A few others climbed down into the tank to check on them but did not come out. They died after inhaling poisonous gas, the official said.
One worker, who was rescued in an unconscious state, is undergoing treatment at Vivekanand Hospital in Latur, fire brigade official said.
A probe has been started into the incident.
The deceased have been identified as Dagdu Pawar, Baliram Pawar, Narendra Tekale, R D Shinde, Maroti Gaikwad, Rambhau Yerme, Akash Bhute, Parmeshwar Birajdar and Atkare Shivaji.
Nilangekar and Assistant Labour Commissioner D P Patil visited the mishap site where they were gheraoed by relatives of the deceased late last night.
Nilangekar, who is also the Guardian Minister of Latur, later told reporters that they were trying to find out if a case under IPC section 302 (murder) could be filed in connection with the incident. He also said that the mill would be sealed.
The mill’s director, Ashok Bhutada, said the cause of the mishap could only be provided after the probe.