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Factory was operating 'illegally'; SDMC served notice in December

Factory was operating illegally; SDMC served notice in December

New Delhi: The death toll in compressor blast case in Moti Nagar's ceiling fan manufacturing factory increased to seven on Friday. South Delhi Municipal Corporation (SDMC) claimed that commercial activity was going on "illegally" in the two-storey building.

According to police six of the seven deceased, which included a child, have been identified as Ramphal (45), Ajay (22), Munger (55), Hanshu (6), Ajay (25) and Rajesh (40). "Eight persons received injury including the owner of the building Ankit Gupta," police said. A case under sections 287, 288, 337 and 304 A of IPC. SDMC official claimed that the nature of work carried out in the building was being ascertained whether it was ceiling-fan making unit or paint-making unit.

Chief Fire Officer (Delhi Fire Services) Atul Garg stated that the factory was running in a house like structure. "The factory was in residential area. No fire NOC given by DFS," said Garg.

"Ironically, we had sent a closure notice to this unit on December 21, and sealing activity was slated to be carried out next week. So, this unit was effectively running illegally," said a senior official from SDMC. He further said, "The ward in which the collapsed building is located had about 700 units, out of which 670 are now closed, sealed or were found vacant when our team visited during the drive. As per the remaining 30 odd units, we will seek action against them, and also examine if there was any laxity on the part of any civic department."

According to residents, the factory door was locked from inside. Next, to the factory one scrap godown situated, at the time of the incident, four persons were sleeping when the wall fell on them.

Sources claimed that in the case police is questioning the house owner. DCP (West) Monika Bharadwaj claimed that there was furnace blast which led to the incident. "The collapsed is said to have been triggered by a blast on the first floor of the building where a factory unit was operating, which blew the roof off. And, the side walls then collapsed under the weight of the debris deposited on the floor," the senior SDMC official said.

Most of the bodies were found on the first floor.

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