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Kerala Govt. orders judicial inquiry in Puttingal temple tragedy

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Kollam (Kerala) : The Kerala Government has announced a judicial inquiry to be headed by retired high court justice Krishnan Nair into the Puttingal temple fire incident, which claimed at least 100 lives and left more than 383 others injured.

Chandy told ANI in an exclusive conversation after emerging out of the Cabinet meeting that the inquiry committee would submit its report within six months.

“We have announced an ex relief of Rs. 10 lakhs to next of kin of the people, who have died in the accident and free treatment to all the injured. Apart from that, serious injured will get Rs. two lakhs and Rs. 50,000 will be given to minor injured people,” said Chandy.

Elaborating on the rescue operations, the Chief Minister said, “The rescue part is almost over and now we are all concentrating to give the best available medical treatment to the injured.”

“According to the latest information, 100 people have died and 383 injured have been admitted to different hospitals in Kollam and Thiruvananthapuram districts. Out of 100 dead, 60 have been identified. The post-mortems are going on,” said Chandy, adding that they are making all efforts to give the best medical treatment to all the injured people.

When asked about the scheduled visits of Prime Minister Narendra Modi and Congress vice-president Rahul Gandhi, Chandy said, “We are very happy that they are coming to Kerala to share our grief. We are very thankful to national leaders, Prime Minister and Congress vice-president. It is a relief for all of us that they are coming all the way from Delhi to meet these people and give some relief. So, we are very thankful to them.”

The Kerala Crime Branch will conduct a separate investigation into the tragedy, tweeted Chandy earlier.

Meanwhile, Prime Minister Modi, who landed at Thiruvananthapuram, boarded an IAF chopper for Kollam.

A team of 15 burn specialist doctors from All India Institute of Medical Science and other hospitals from Delhi are accompanying the Prime Minister to Kollam.

Prime Minister Modi has announced an ex-gratia relief of Rs. two lakh to next of the kin of the deceased and Rs. 50,000 to those critically injured in the incident.

An explosion in piles of crackers during a fireworks display is said to be the reason behind the fire that broke out around 3.30 a.m. (ANI)

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