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U.P. cold storage tragedy: Death toll rises to 14; CM orders probe

Uttar Pradesh Chief Minister Yogi Adityanath visits the injured of Sambhal cold storage incidents at a hospital, in Moradabad, on March 17, 2023.
| Photo Credit: PTI

The death toll in a roof collapse incident at a cold storage in Sambhal district climbed to 14 on Friday as Chief Minister Yogi Adityanath visited the injured and formed a committee to probe the reasons behind the tragedy.

Twenty-four people were pulled out of the rubble of the collapsed structure on Indira Road under Chandausi police station limits and 14 of them died, Deputy Inspector General of Police Shalabh Mathur said.

Almost all the missing workers had been found and the rescue operation was in its last phase, Mr. Mathur said.

District Magistrate Manish Bansal said four people were undergoing treatment at a Moradabad hospital, while six had been discharged.

CM’s hospital visit

Chief Minister Yogi Adityanath, who was on an official visit to Moradabad, visited them.

A government spokesperson said in Lucknow that CM Adityanath had announced an ex-gratia of ₹2 lakh each for the next of kin of the deceased, ₹50,000 for those critically injured and free treatment for all those who suffered injuries in the incident.

Mr. Adityanath expressed grief over the loss of lives and directed officials to ensure proper treatment to the injured, according to the spokesperson.

He has also formed a committee led by the Divisional Commissioner and the DIG of Moradabad to probe the reasons behind the roof collapse.

The committee has been asked to submit its report at the earliest, the spokesperson said.

Sambhal is around 158 km from Delhi and 350 km from the State capital, Lucknow.

DM Bansal said the rescue operation, in which the National Disaster Response Force and State Disaster Response Force were involved, continued through the night.

Chief Medical Officer Tarannum Raza said that around 25 doctors along with 21 ambulances were pressed into the rescue operation. Some ambulances were also called from Moradabad, Budaun and Rampur.

Searchlights were installed in the area to facilitate the rescue operation. Earth movers too were pressed into service to remove the debris.

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