Bengaluru blast: Owner of godown arrested

Police said Ganesh Babu had brought a consignment of firecrackers for the upcoming festival season. The firecrackers were being shifted to the godown when the blast occurred.

The Bengaluru police have arrested one person in the wake of a blast at a transport firm’s godown at New Thagaratpet near KR Market on Thursday in which two people were killed. The explosion, triggered by a firecracker blast, also injured four other persons.

Identifying the arrested individual as Ganesh Babu, proprietor of Sri Patrakali Amman Lorry Service Godown, police said he had brought a consignment of firecrackers for the upcoming festival season from Sivakasi in Tamil Nadu. Babu was arrested under sections of the Explosive Substances Act and Explosives Act.

Police said the firecrackers were brought to the spot on Thursday afternoon. The boxes were being shifted to the godown before being sold to customers. The blast occurred when godown worker Manohar was pushing a trolley loaded with a box of firecrackers, killing him and one Aslam who was working at a puncture shop nearby. Cops have also collected CCTV footage from the area.

The intensity of the explosion was such that the bodies were ripped to pieces and Aslam’s shop and a tea shop next to it were completely charred. Around 10 two-wheelers were also damaged.

Fire department officials are yet to determine the reason behind the blast. Deputy Commissioner of Police (south) Harish Pandey said, “There were more than 60 boxes of firecrackers, but preliminary investigation indicates that only one box exploded.” The crackers were stored without any safety measure in place.

Additional Commissioner of Police (West) Soumendu Mukherjee confirmed that the owner of the godown had no permission or licence to store crackers in the building.

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