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Violations found at Virudhunagar cracker factory

VIRUDHUNAGAR: A day after a blast at Shri Sudharsan Fireworks at Sengamalapatti killed 10 people, a preliminary inquiry by the district administration revealed several violations at the unit, where the blast had occurred, including usage of an excess amount of raw materials. The unit also employed more workers than the norms and manufactured crackers in the absence of safety protocol and proper infrastructure.

Official sources said, the unit was also subleased to others, and crackers were manufactured in the shade of trees instead of the allocated rooms. “The unit was not operational for about a year and had resumed functioning only recently,” said sources. Highlighting that the Goondas Act was invoked against an individual near Sivakasi for manufacturing crackers in violation of norms, officials said action will be taken against errant owners and unit operators.

“The unit should not be leased out to others. In case of such violations, action will be taken,” said official sources. Further, cracker unit owners, foremen, and workers of 200 units, who have not attended the skill training programme, have been directed to complete it in two months. Considering the heat wave, the units have also been instructed to reduce manufacturing time and provide adequate safety measures.

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