Kerala Temple Fire: 83 Killed, Over 350 Injured

Close to 100 people were killed and 200 others injured in an explosion during fireworks display at Puttingal temple in Kollam district of Kerala at around 3:30 am on Sunday.

A building in the temple premises completely collapsed in the explosion. According to eyewitnesses, most of the victims died in the building collapse. While others suffered burn victims, some were also injured and killed in a stampede that followed.

Prime Minister Narendra Modi will visit Kollam at 3.30 pm today. The Prime Minister as well as Home Minister Rajnath Singh spoke to Chief Minister Oommen Chandy and promised all help including requisitioning of air ambulance to ferry the victims.

According to sources, Congress president Rahul Gandhi will also reach the mishap site this afternoon.
Chief Minister Oommen Chandy said a special meeting of the state cabinet will be held at 1 pm in Kollam and will decide on the nature of the probe into the mishap and will also discuss compensation for the victims.
“Since the model code of conduct is in place, the Chief Secretary has spoken to the Election Commission for clearances regarding the compensation to be awarded.,” Home Minister Ramesh Chennithala said.
The Kollam District Administration said it had denied permission to the temple authorities for carrying out fireworks display. However, police said a conditional permission to carry out minor fireworks was obtained.
Police have registered cases against two contractors who supplied the explosives and also against the temple administration.
Control Rooms have been opened to coordinate rescue oprations: 0474 2512344, 949760778, 949730869 (Kollam) and 0471 2528647 (Medical College Hospital, Thiruvananthapuram).

Heartfelt condolences to the bereaved families. Prayers with you all.

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