At least 12 people, including nine labourers hailing from Malda in West Bengal, died in an explosion at a carpet manufacturing unit, where firecrackers were allegedly being manufactured and stored illegally, in Bhadohi district on Saturday.
At least three persons were injured and were taken to BHU Medical College in Varanasi. The owners of the unit, a father-son duo, were among the deceased.
Police and district administration officials said rescue operations had ended and there was no one trapped under the debris. The impact of the blast was such that the structure collapsed and cracks surfaced on the walls of three nearby houses.
“We have recovered 11 bodies. Most of them were labourers from West Bengal. Three-four persons were taken to Varanasi for treatment. The place where the explosion took place is a 20×25 feet single-storeyed house. The owner Irrfan and his father, Kaliyar Mansuri, were also running a small grocery shop apart from a carpet manufacturing unit. They were also been manufacturing crackers illegally,” said DIG (Mirzapur range), Piyush Srivastava.
“Special teams, including bomb disposal squad, National Disaster Response Force and forensic experts reached the spot. The teams will determine the exact cause of the explosion,” the DIG added.
District Magistrate Rajendra Prasad said no permission was given for manufacturing or storage of firecrackers at the structure.
“It appears that a significant amount of crackers were stored and the setup was running illegally. An Additional DM will conduct a magisterial inquiry into the incident,” said Prasad.