TWO more bodies were recovered from the blast spot at the Central Ammunition Depot (CAD) in Pulgaon, Wardha, on Wednesday, taking the toll to 18. One more person is missing.
Wing Commander Samir Gangakhedkar, the Public Relations Officer (Defence), said three injured persons, including an Army officer, were shifted from the Acharya Vinobha Bhave hospital at Savangi Meghe near Wardha to a hospital in Pune for further treatment. He said he would not be able to say why they were shifted, saying he did not “have the exact information about it”. Gangakhedkar said names of the deceased would be put out only after confirmation.
A massive fire broke out at one of Asia’s biggest ammunition depot in Maharashtra’s Pulgaon that houses the largest stockpile of weapons in the country.
The fire occurred in the wee hours on Tuesday at one of the sheds that housed “highly sensitive ammunition” in the high security central ammunition depot (CAD), spread over 7,000 acres.
“However, in efforts to douse the fire, two officers and 14 personnel (including one Army jawan and 13 civilian fire fighting staff) lost their lives and two officers and 15 personnel (including nine Army Jawans and six civilian fire
fighting staff) were injured,” Director General of Military Operations Lt Gen Ranbir Singh had said.
Loud explosions were heard one after the other as the raging fire lit up the night sky.
The cause of the fire is yet to be ascertained and the Army has instituted an inquiry into the incident, Singh had said.
Defence Minister Manohar Parrikar had said there was no sabotage involved in the fire at the ammunition depot but the exact cause would be known only after inquiry.
Parrikar along with Army chief General Dalbir Singh Suhag, had on Tuesday visited CAD, Pulgaon and met the injured persons in a local hospital.
(With PTI inputs)