Millennium Post

Cracker blast at Naya Bazaar kills one, four others injured

A cracker blast took place at the crowded Chandni Chowk market’s Naya Bazaar area in which a labourer died while four others sustained severe injuries when a bag full of crackers exploded on Tuesday morning. In the aftermath of the blast, Home Minister Rajnath Singh has asked Delhi Police Commissioner Alok Kumar Verma to submit a detailed report on the incident.

According to senior police officials, the incident took place at around 10:40 am at the Pattewali Gali. The deceased has been identified as Motalip Mirza while the injured have been identified as Bhupendra Gupta, Mahesh, Hawa Singh and Murari.

Motilap Mirza was native of Murshidabad in West Bengal and had been working as a labourer in Delhi for the past 20 years. The entire incident was caught on the CCTV camera of a nearby shop. In the CCTV grab, Mirza is seen making his way through the crowded market carrying two heavy gunny bags filled with crackers and approaches Sarashwati traders. He placed the bag outside Sarashwati traders when the explosion takes place.

Police said that all the injured were rushed to different hospitals where they are all stated to be out of danger.

Meanwhile, Delhi Police maintained that the blast took place due to high pressure in the bags owing to the high quantity of crackers. They have registered a case under relevant sections of the IPC at Lahori Gate police station.

Eyewitnesses said that the impact of the blast was so powerful that window panes of the adjoining buildings were completely shattered. 

The sliding glass doors and aluminum gates of several grain traders’ shops were broken as well. 

Dr Anil Bansal, who runs a Diagnostic Centre, close to the blast spot shared: “There was a sudden blast and the air outside my centre was filled with smoke. People were running helter skelter. Chaos unfurled after we spotted a man lying motionless on the road.”

Police added that they reached the spot within 10 minutes and found one person dead while several others injured. Apart from the local police, teams from Special Cell and the forensic department visited the spot to take stock of the situation.

In light of the incident, Special Commissioner of Police, Law and Order, SBK Singh tweeted: “Cracker blast took place in Lahori Gate area when a labour Motalip Mirza was carrying two bags of crackers. Handle crackers carefully (sic).” 

‘Had it been at 11 am, the tragedy could have been bigger’

Minutes after a cracker blast took place at the crowded Naya Bazaar area leaving a labourer dead and four others severely injured at the Chandni Chowk area of North Delhi on Tuesday morning, residents and local shop owners said how the incident could have triggered a bigger tragedy had the blast happened post 11 am on a busy weekday.

Dotted with several wholesale shops selling flour, rice and an X-ray lab, the Pattewali lane at Naya Bazaar is a congested lane, echoes its residents.

Talking to Millennium Post, Dr Anil Bansal, who runs a Diagnostic Centre on the first floor of the building, right next to where the bags of crackers exploded in the area, said: “The lanes here are so congested that there is no place to walk after 11 am. Surrounded by wholesale shops of flour, rice and strings of shops selling spare parts, there is usually no place to walk and we too park our cars some distance away from the Pattewali gali. 

Due to the onset of the festive season and Diwali, people throng the area in large numbers. The time when the blast took off usually sees a comparatively lesser crowd. However, had it (cracker blast) occurred after 11 or 12 in the morning, there would have been a lot more chaos and chances of a stampede would be higher.”

Madhur Verma, DCP (North) said: “We have registered a case under Section 3 of the Explosive Substance Act, 286, 304A, 336 and 338 and 427 of the IPC at the Lahori Gate police station. Probe is on.” 
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