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Kerala temple tragedy: Six booked    


Kollam (Ker), Apr 11: Gross violation of norms and use of banned chemicals led to the Puttingal tragedy, a top explosives official said today as a case of attempt to murder was filed against six persons including temple officials while the Kerala High Court will hear tomorrow the plea for a ban on cracker bursting and fireworks display in temple functions.

Tales of horror continued to pour in as the death toll in fireworks display in Puttingal Devi temple early yesterday morning that went awry rose to 109 while more than 300 people were being treated for injuries.

Kerala temple tragedy: 6 booked

A case has been registered against six persons, including members of temple managing committee under Section 307 of eh IPC (attempt to murder), 308 (attempt to commit culpable homicide) of IPC and under section 4 of Explosives Substances Act.

Besides the members of the temple managing committee, case was also registered against assistants of contractors who held the 'competitive' pyrotechnic display, despite a ban on it by the district administration.

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A crime branch probe also began today into the fireworks tragedy. Sudarshan Kamal, Chief Controller of Explosives, Nagpur, deputed by the Centre to take stock of the situation, told reporters after a visit to the site today that there were gross violations of norms and basic precautions and a ban order were ignored.

"There seems to have been a gross violation of explosives norms", said Kamal, who in charge of monitoring use, storage and licensing of explosives.

"We have come here for investigation on the explosives used for the display", he said, adding banned chemicals were used by the suppliers, who manufactured the crackers and conducted the display. "Basic precautions had been ignored", he said.


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