Toll in Deeg explosion rises to 27

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Jaipur, Oct 23 (UNI) Ten more bodies were extricated from the debris of the houses damaged in explosion in a cracker manufacturer's premises in Deeg town of Bharatpur in Rajasthan last night, taking the toll to 27, Superintendent of Police Rohit Mahajan said.

The blast caused a major fire which engulfed a few houses in the neighbourhood. About half-a-dozen houses were damaged badly burying several people under the debris, Mr Mahajan said.

At least five people were rescued from the debris by the rescue teams which worked overnight.

Seventeen people were being treated at the Deeg Hospital, the hospital sources said.

The administration has granted an ex-gratia of Rs one lakh to the next of kin of each of the deceased, Home Secretary S N Thanvi said here.

The ex-gratia would be disbursed to the victims' families after clearance from the Election Commission, Mr Thanvi said.

The inquiry into the cause and circumstances of the explosion had been entrusted to Bharatpur Divisional Commissioner Rajendra Bhanawat, who is expected to submit a report within a fortnight, he added.

Meanwhile, 10 people were arrested for illicit storage of explosive (gunpowder) and manufacturing of crackers, police sources said.

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