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Kerala firecracker blast: 4 Arrested, remanded; more arrests to follow, say police

Tripunithura, Feb 13, 2024: Four persons were arrested and remanded to judicial custody and more arrests are expected in the coming days in connection with the massive blast that claimed two lives and injured around 15, at an illegal firecrackers warehouse operating from a residential area at Tripunithura near here a day ago, police said on Tuesday.



Sajeesh Kumar, Rajesh and Sathyan, who are the president, secretary and treasurer of the Puthiyakavu Devi Temple, respectively, and Adarsh, the firecracker contractor, were arrested and remanded to custody on Monday evening, police said.

An officer of Hill Palace police station said that an investigation into the incident has revealed the involvement of several other officials of the temple and therefore, more arrests are expected soon.

While one person succumbed to burn injuries soon after the tragedy, the other man was declared dead at a government medical college later in the day.

The mishap happened when crackers were brought to be stored in the warehouse for an ongoing festival at a local temple.

The accused have been booked under multiple sections of the IPC including 304 (culpable homicide not amounting to murder).

As per the police, the firecrackers and the gunpowder were illegally stored in a shed by the contractor as per the instruction of the temple officials.

Police haven’t yet given any exact reason for the sudden explosion.

The explosion from the crackers and gunpowder initially killed one person, critically injured at least 16 others and damaged several houses in the vicinity.

More than 25 houses and some shops in the vicinity were severely damaged, while two vehicles were completely charred due to the explosion.

The State Human Rights Commission registered a case on its own into the firecracker mishap incident based on media reports.

The panel directed the Ernakulam district collector and city police commissioner to probe the incident and submit a report within 15 days.

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