5 dead, 1 injured in Chikkaballapur mine blast in K’taka

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5 dead, 1 injured in Chikkaballapur mine blast in K’taka

Chikkaballapur: At least five persons were killed and one received severe injuries in a suspected gelatine explosion at a quarry site in Hirenagavalli hamlet bordering Chikkaballapur and Bengaluru in the wee hours of Tuesday morning, police said.

Hirenagavalli is a small hamlet in Chikballapur taluk in Chikballapur district of Karnataka. It is located 86 kms from tech hub Bengaluru.

According to the police the deceased were identified as engineer Umakant, security guard Mahesh, billing clerk Murali, computer operator Gangadhar and one Abhi, all working in Sri Bhramaravasini stone crusher plant in Chikkaballapur.

Inspector General of Police (Central Range) M. Chandrashekhar told reporters that the Chikkaballapur police had conducted a search operations of this unit twice, first on February 7 and second search led by SP K. Mithun just 10 or 12 hours prior to this incident.

“Our prima facie investigations reveal the mine owners seem to have hired inexperienced people in handling explosive material to dispose off ‘excess’ materials in their possession. In a hurry they have tried to dispose it off and led to the accident,” he said.

He added that the police had already picked up a person after search operations on February 7, who sells explosive materials in this region. “We were still on the investigation and now this incident has taken place,” he said.

While Karnataka Health Minister K. Sudhakar said that the quarry was storing gelatin sticks illegally. “There is no question of protecting anyone, as these are illegally held explosives. This will be dealt with by law, strict action will be taken,” he said.

Prime Minister Narendra Modi and Chief Minister B.S. Yediyurappa offered condolences to the families of the victims and assured strict action.

“The death of six people near the village of Hirenagavalli in Chikkaballapur, which killed six people, is a shock. Information has been obtained from the District Ministers and senior officials, who have been instructed to conduct a thorough investigation and take stern action against the guilty,” Yediyurappa said on Twitter.

He added, “A high-level investigation into the disaster is underway and strict action will be taken against the guilty.”

“Pained by the loss of lives due to a mishap at Chikkaballapur in Karnataka. Condolences to the bereaved families. Praying that the injured recover quickly,” the Prime Minister tweeted.

This tragedy comes just a month after a similar mishap was reported from Shivamogga district where six labourers died in a quarry due to an accidental explosion of a similar nature.

In the Shivamogga disaster, a lorry carrying explosives exploded killing all five persons in the vehicle. Following the incident, Yediyurappa had ordered a drive to check illegal quarrying and mining in the state. He had also ordered that usage of illegal explosive be stopped immediately.

 

5 dead in Chikkaballapur mine blast 

Chikkaballapur: Five persons died and one person injured after gelatin sticks exploded early Tuesday in a village bordering Chikkaballapur and Bengaluru, the police said.

Mine owners successfully hid mining blast material twice in the last fortnight while raids were to be carried out. On Tuesday fearing another round of raid, the mine owner appears to have decided to dispose off the explosives in forested area adjoining the mine, where large gorges exist.

The blast occurred in the stone quarry unit situated in Hirenagavalli village in Chikkaballapur district of Karnataka. One person has reportedly sustained injuries.

Hirenagavalli is a small hamlet in Chikballapur taluk in Chikballapur district of Karnataka. It is located 86 kms from tech hub Bengaluru.

Inspector General of Police (Central Range) M. Chandrashekhar told reporters that the mine in which this incident has taken place, was inspected by the police team led by Superintendent of Police of Chikkaballapur twice in the last fortnight.

“On February 6, the police conducted search operations and just 24 hours before this blast took place, our special team had conducted the search operations to know the veracity of facts. But this blast has taken place after the police team left the quarry areas,” he said.

Chikkaballapur mine blast: Several feared dead

Chikkaballapur: At least four persons are reported to have died when gelatin sticks exploded early Tuesday in a village bordering Chikkaballapur and Bengaluru.

The blast occurred in a stone quarry unit situated in Hirenagavalli village. One person has reportedly sustained injuries.

Hirenagavalli is a small hamlet in Chikballapur taluk in Chikballapur district. It is located 86 km from tech hub Bengaluru.

According to the initial inputs, the explosion happened when they were trying to dispose off the gelatin sticks used for quarrying.

“This incident took place when mine owners were trying to dispose off gelatin sticks when they got a whiff that their mine might be raided once again to check whether they have stored any explosives illegally,” an investigation officer told IANS.

The officer added that all those involved in this incident were non-experts in handling explosives, therefore the accident.

Karnataka Health Minister, who is also district incharge minister, K. Sudhakar visited the spot and told reporters that the state government would not succumb to any pressure and act sternly against all those responsible for this incident.

Reacting sharply, Karnataka Mines and Geology Minister, Murugesh R. Nirani said that the state government will conduct thorough inqury into the incident.

This is the second such incident in Karnataka after the one that had occurred in Shivamogga district on January 21.


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