Police have arrested the owner of the firecracker storage unit in Bawana where 17 people were killed in a massive blaze yesterday. Manoj Jain, who ran the factory, has been arrested. A probe revealed it was a factory of “cold firecrackers” used in stage shows and Holi celebrations, said Rajneesh Gupta, Deputy Commissioner of Police (Rohini). Firecracker packages found at the site suggest the same, he said. Jain had rented the factory from January 1, the DCP said. Seven of those killed have been identified as Baby Devi (40), Afshana (35), Sonam (23), Reeta (18), Nadeen (55), Rakho (65) and Dharma Devi (45), he said. The fire had started in the storage unit on the ground floor of the two-storey building and ripped through the structure. Of the 17 killed, ten were women. A man and woman were injured. Police said an FIR had been registered under Indian Penal Code (IPC) sections relating to culpable homicide not amounting to murder, and negligent conduct with respect to fire or combustible material.
The maximum punishment under the sections is 10 years. Jain was apprehended and questioned yesterday. The other partner of Jain has been identified as Lalit Goel. One of the injured labourers told police that the firecrackers used to be brought from outside and were only packed at the unit.