The ghastly explosion and fire accident in an illegal cracker factory in Hapur in UP is another in a series of repeats of disasters waiting to happen and actually happening. Twelve people died and 13 people were injured, according to the police. Workers and factory owners nearby said they heard a loud blast in the afternoon on Saturday (June 4) followed by smoke billowing and material flying off from the factory.
But there was also an element of high drama as there are indications of deliberate arson that have not been ruled out. Although the reason for the blast will be ascertained after the reports of the Forensic Science Laboratory (FSL) investigation, the SP said that the police have recovered plastic pallets used in toy guns from the spot.
"We will only get to know about the kind of material that had exploded after the FSL report. We have recovered plastic pallets from the spot. These pallets are used in toy guns with firecrackers on Diwali. These pallets were being made inside the factory," he said. Uttar Pradesh Police has registered an FIR under sections 286 (Negligent conduct with respect to explosive substance), 287 (Negligent conduct with respect to machinery), 304 (culpable homicide), 308 (Attempt to commit culpable homicide), 337 (negligence endangering human life), and 338 (grievous hurt by an act which endangers human life) of the Indian Penal Code.
According to a news report, Sub-inspector Sandeep Kumar of Dhaulana police station and chowki in-charge, UPSIDC has said that they received information around 2:30 pm. “We rushed to the spot. We found eight bodies inside the factory which were completely charred. Another four people succumbed to their injuries in the hospitals where they were taken. Currently the injured are admitted at Safdarjung Hospital in Delhi, Sushila Multi-speciality Hospital in Ghaziabad and Meerut Medical. The owner of the factory is one Dilshad, a resident of Meerut. He had rented the factory to one Waseem, who is from Hapur. We have tried to trace both people but their phones are switched off. We were told Waseem was one of the injured but we have not been able to track him.”