The death toll in fire works explosion at Puttingal temple in Paravur at Kollam district has escalated to 105 while the number of injured has been declared as 538. The explosion occurred at an illegal fireworks competition held as part of the temple festival. According to the reports, citing safety issues, district administration had refused permission sought by the temple authorities to conduct firework competition at Puttingal. However, the temple authorities went ahead with the competition which lead to the tragedy.
A preliminary enquiry has revealed that rules were flouted by the temple authorities with regard to firework display. The godown which store fireworks were not insulated to prevent sparks. The mandatory distance of 100 meters between the firework godown and the firework display venue was not maintained, according to a CNN-IBN report.
The fire broke out at the Kollam’s Puttingal temple at around 3.30 am on Sunday morning when a blister from the firework show pack of firecrackers caught fire during the fireworks show as part of the temple festivities.
A huge explosion was followed by a massive fire trapping hundreds of devotees gathered at the temple premises for the temple festival. Impact of the explosion reportedly was felt by people in a radius of one-and- half kilometer.
Prime Minister Narendra Modi tweeted that he would be visiting the temple to take stock of the situation. He is expected arrive by 3.30 pm.
The injured have been rushed to Trivanandapuram Medical College and Kollam General Hospital.
The incident occurred four days before Malayalam New Year.