Three-year-old boy among 12 killed in wall collapse at factory in Gujarat’s Morbi

MORBI (Guj), May 18: At least 11 labourers and a three-year-old boy were killed when a wall collapsed at a salt packaging factory in Gujarat’s Morbi district on Wednesday, officials said.
The deceased included five women, they said, adding that two labourers were pulled out alive from the rubble and hospitalised.
The tragedy occurred at Sagar Salt factory situated inside the Halvad industrial area of Morbi district, said state Labour and Employment Minister and local MLA Brijesh Merja.
Following the incident, Gujarat Chief Minister Bhupendra Patel and Merja rushed to Halvad from Gandhinagar and ordered a detailed inquiry into the tragedy after visiting the factory premises.
“At least 12 factory workers have died due to the wall collapse. Two labourers, who were injured in the incident, were pulled out alive from the rubble and admitted to a hospital,” Merja said.
“We have ordered an inquiry into the incident. The report will be prepared and submitted to us within three days. The State Government will take action against those who are found guilty,” he told reporters.
As per the list of the victims shared by the authorities, those who lost their lives included 11 labourers, including five women, and a three-year-old son of one of the victims.
The collapse of a partition wall which separates the packaging area and storage section of the factory led to the tragedy, said Range Inspector General, Sandeep Singh.
“Due to the sudden collapse of the partition wall, labourers working in the packaging area of the factory were crushed under the debris. We have called in forensic experts to ascertain what exactly caused the collapse and what kind of material was used in constructing the wall,” Singh said.
Prime Minister Narendra Modi expressed grief over the tragedy after learning about the incident, and announced a compensation of Rs 2 lakh for the kin of each deceased.
“The tragedy in Morbi caused by a wall collapse is heart-rending. In this hour of grief, my thoughts are with the bereaved families. May the injured recover soon. Local authorities are providing all possible assistance to the affected,” the PM tweeted.
In a tweet, the Prime Minister’s Office said, “Rs 2 lakh each from PMNRF (Prime Minister’s National Relief Fund) would be given to the next of kin of those who have lost their lives due to the tragedy in Morbi. The injured would be given Rs 50,000.”
Union Home Minister Amit Shah also posted a tweet, in which he expressed pain over the death of 12 persons, and said he held a telephonic talk with CM Patel about the ongoing rescue work.
The Chief Minister also announced a compensation of Rs 4 lakh to the kin of each victim and gave necessary instructions to the district administration about the rescue and relief work, a statement by the CMO said. (PTI)