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Negligence led to father-daughter duo’s death in Bengaluru transformer blast: Minister

The transformer near the Manganahalli bridge exploded spilling oil over Shivaraj and Chaitanya. Chaitanya’s marriage had recently been fixed and they were returning after booking a marriage hall.

Kumar told the Assembly that the Bangalore Electricity Supply Company Limited (Bescom) had received a complaint at 12.50pm but it was not addressed. The explosion took place around 3.10pm. (Photo Source: http://vsunilkumar.in/)

Karnataka Energy Minister V Sunil Kumar said on Thursday that negligence in addressing a complaint had led to Wednesday’s transformer blast in Bengaluru that claimed the lives of a man and his daughter.

Kumar told the Assembly that the Bangalore Electricity Supply Company Limited (Bescom) had received a complaint at 12.50pm but it was not addressed. The explosion took place around 3.10pm.

The transformer installed on a footpath near the Manganahalli bridge exploded as Shivaraj (55) and Chaitanya (19) were passing it on a scooter. Shivaraj died on the spot while Chaitanya succumbed to burns a day later. Chaitanya’s marriage had recently been fixed and the duo were returning after booking a marriage hall.

An investigation suggested that the transformer had exploded spilling oil all over, including on the scooter. The duo were was riding slowly because the road was bad. A police officer said that if they were travelling at 40 km per hour, they might have escaped unhurt.

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BJP MLA S Suresh Kumar, who raised the incident in the House, said innocent people’s lives were at risk on Bengaluru’s roads.

The energy minister said the government would give Rs 10 lakh each for the victims’ relatives. “I will also hold a meeting with the Bescom officials on conducting an audit of faulty transformers and transformers installed on the roadside,” he said.

Darshan, the local resident who had informed the Bescom helpline, said, “I had called them numerous times, but my first call was at 12.45pm. Despite requesting them to attend to the issue, none paid any heed. This led to the death of the duo.”

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The Jnanabharathi police booked Bescom officials for negligence but have not made any arrest.

First published on: 24-03-2022 at 19:19 IST
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