Two children, including a nine-month-old boy and a four-and-a-half-year-old girl died after a fire broke out near their house in northeast Delhi’s Karawal Nagar area on Wednesday morning. The fire broke out after a gas cylinder exploded in the next house. While nine-month-old Rohan died at Guru Teg Bahadur Hospital on Saturday, his sister Radhika succumbed to her injuries on Monday morning.
Their father, 32-year-old Vipul Das and mother, 28-year-old Heena, are still recuperating in hospital, police said. Deputy Commissioner of Police (northeast) A K Singla said police have arrested their neighbour, identified as Santosh, under section 304A of the IPC.
“Santosh was illegally filling his cylinders at home with some LPG cylinders that he was supposed to stock for the gas agency he worked at,” Singla said. According to police, the leak originated from Santosh’s house. The children and their parents live in the adjacent house on rent.
“Santosh used to transfer LPG from bigger cylinders into smaller cylinders and sell them in the locality. On the day of the incident, he had left a gas cylinder open and placed it in his room — which is adjacent to Heena’s kitchen,” said a police officer.
Police said the explosion took place when Heena lit her stove. The fire soon started to spread to other rooms. The family sustained severe burn injuries as a result of the fire. Santosh, along with other locals, helped them get out of the house, police said.
Following the deaths of the children, locals had also protested outside the gas agency’s office and demanded immediate arrest of the accused. Police are questioning the accused to ascertain if more people were involved in the illegal sale of gas cylinders in the locality, the officer added.