December 2, 2021 4:37:53 am
Three persons died and many were injured in an explosion at an firecracker manufacturing unit in the Nodakhali police station area of the South 24 Parganas district. The incident took place around 7 in the morning, police said.
Such was the intensity of the blast that a portion of the factory’s ceiling was blown off and the windows of nearby houses shook. The explosion took place in a two-storey house belonging to one Ashim Mondal in the Nodakhali area, a senior police officer said. One fire tender was rushed to douse the flames.
The incident touched off a political firestorm, with the BJP accusing theTrinamool Congress of “stockpiling” explosives to unleash violence, and the ruling party alleging that the saffron party was doing “cheap politics” over the incident.
Three people died at the spot. On receiving word of the incident, personnel from the Nodakhali police station rushed to the spot. The bodies of the victims were retrieved and the injured were admitted to a local hospital. The deceased were identified as Ashim Mondal, the owner of the building, Atithi Haldar and Kakoli Midya, police said. The victims were residents of Mohanpur in the Nodakhali police station area.
According to local sources, Mondal opened the factory a few years ago despite objections from locals. The cracker manufacturing unit had a significant stockpile of gunpowder, locals claimed.
Reacting to the incident, BJP national vice-president Dilip Ghosh said, “We have reasons to believe that the explosives were being stored to create disturbances in Diamond Harbour and other areas of the district.”
“The BJP is indulging in cheap politics and adding political colour to an accident which is being investigated by the police,” a district Trinamool Congress leader said.
— with PTI inputs
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