Millennium Post (Kolkata)

Massive blast .


sent,” CM Yadav wrote on X.

On the instructio­ns of CM Yadav, a three-membered team has been formed to inquire into all causes of the mishap, which will be headed by Principal Secretary of Home Department Sanjay Dubey while Additional Director General of Police (Intelligen­ce) Jaideep Prasad and Secretary PWD R K Mehra will be the members of the body.

The Chief Minister announced ex-gratia of Rs 4 Lakh to the family members of the deceased while Prime Minister Narendra Modi declared Rs. 2 Lakh to the next of kin of each departed from the PM’s National Relief Fund, and Rs 50,000 to the injured.

“Distressed by the loss of lives due to the mishap at a cracker factory in Harda, Madhya Pradesh. Condolence­s to all those who have lost their loved ones. May those injured recover at the earliest. The local administra­tion is assisting all those affected,” Prime Minister Narendra Modi said in an X post.

Minister Rao, who has reached the spot, said “We had a conversati­on with the Collector. The injured have been shifted to Hoshangaba­d and Bhopal.”

He added, “A team of SDRF is working here under the guidance of SDRF ADG who is present on the spot. Around 60 people have been injured in the incident and seriously injured being transferre­d to Bhopal, Indore.”

More than 50 ambulances have been sent from various districts to Harda, to cope with any emergency at the blast site.

Sources said that the magnitude of the blast was so huge that it engulfed more than 60 houses near the factory. It is also reported that there was a large quantity of gunpowder inside the factory, which led to the explosion.

The CM has also instructed the officials to make ready the burn units in the medical colleges and ensure arrangemen­ts to convert into the green corridors between Harda to Bhopal and Indore so that the injured could be swiftly taken to the hospitals for treatment.

CM Yadav postponed the night stay program of Aharwada village of Chhindwara district. Later on Tuesday evening, two individual­s, identified as Rajesh Agrawal and Somesh Agrawal, owners of the firecracke­rs factory were apprehende­d by the police, officials said.

Additional­ly, another individual, Rafiq Khan, suspected to be the factory manager, was detained for questionin­g. The arrests and detention took place in Sarangpur, Rajgarh district.

They face charges including culpable homicide not amounting to murder, following the filing of an FIR against them.

Harda Superinten­dent of Police, Sanjeev Kanchan, confirmed the arrests and detention, stating that the individual­s have been charged under relevant sections of the Indian Penal Code, including 304, 308, and 34.

‘ED raids

On Monday, the Trinamool Congress has criticised Prime Minister Narendra Modi’s speech in Lok Sabha, stating that the country has regressed in various areas under his leadership.

In response to Modi’s claims of good governance and developmen­t, the TMC posted on X: “You boast about the improvemen­t in India’s economy, but what about our slipping ranks in the following? 111th on the Hunger Index, 161st on the Press Freedom Index,” the party stated.

Regarding the prime minister’s comments on ‘Nari Shakti’ (women power), Shashi Panja had questioned: “What about your party leaders making shameful and misogynist­ic remarks about TMC chairperso­n Mamata Banerjee?”

and to reassure the youth that their sincere and genuine efforts will be fairly rewarded and their future is safe.

In her address to the joint sitting of both houses of Parliament which marked the beginning of the Budget session on January 31, President Droupadi Murmu had said the government is aware of the concerns of the youth regarding irregulari­ties in examinatio­ns. “Therefore, it has been decided to enact a new law to deal sternly with such malpractic­es,” she stated.

Responding to the criticism by some Opposition members that the government is centralisi­ng everything, Singh said the Modi-government believes in cooperativ­e federalism and the Bill does not attempt to centralise all the systems.

He said that whenever any exam is cancelled, the effort would be made to hold the re-examinatio­n as early as possible. However, he added that there cannot be any firm timeline for reexaminat­ion of cancelled exams as often such cases are examined by investigat­ive agencies and they take their own time.

The minister also said that the UPSC is conducting exams in 14 languages and “we hope to gradually include all 22 languages”. Participat­ing in the debate on the Bill, Congress leader Adhir Ranjan Chowdhury said that the Bill talks about penal provisions and is absent on prevent measures. He also accused that the entire emphasis of the government is to centralise all the authoritie­s.

Citing reports, Chowdhury said that the country has witnessed a large number of cases with regard to data leaks and how the government intends to plug these loopholes. N K Premachand­ran (RSP) demanded that the provisions of the Bill were against the principles of criminal jurisprude­nce and hence it should be referred to the standing committee for scrutiny. TMC leader Kalyan Banerjee said that there is no dirth of laws but the real problem is with their implementa­tion.

Satya Pal Singh, former Mumbai Police Commission­er and BJP MP from Uttar Pradesh’s Baghpat, said when he was the HRD minister he got to closely see the malpractic­es in the PhDs which was a mandatory requiremen­t for being recruited as assistant professors.

Kathir Anand, DMK MP from Vellore; Chinta Anuradha, YSR Congress MP from Amalapuram (Andhra Pradesh); Rahul Ramesh Shewale, Shiv Sena MP and BJD MP Achyutanan­da Samanta, also spoke in support of the Bill.

At present, there is no specific substantiv­e law to deal with unfair means adopted or offences committed by various entities involved in the conduct of

public examinatio­ns by the central government and its agencies.

The Bill mentions “leakage of question paper or answer key”, “directly or indirectly assisting the candidate in any manner unauthoris­edly in the public examinatio­n” and “tampering with the computer network or a computer resource or a computer system” as offences done by a person, group of persons or institutio­ns.

The Bill proposes action against organised gangs, mafia elements and those indulging in malpractic­es and will not even spare government officials found in collusion with them.

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