Massive fire at Puttingal Temple kills over 100 persons

Over a 100 people were reported killed and score others injured after a firework display caused massive blaze at the Puttingal Temple in the coastal town of Paravur around 60 kms from Thiruvananthapuram early on Sunday. According to reports, the tragedy struck when firework display competetion was being held.
Prime Minister Narendra Modi cancelled all his engagements and rushed to Paravur to take stock of the situation there with clear instruction to officials not to follow any official welcome protocol mandated by the book. Union Home Ministry has pressed four teams of NDRF along with IAF and Navy which have also pressed helicopters and a dorniers for the rescue and relief operation.
The temple every year holds a competitive fireworks display, with different groups putting on successive light shows for thousands of devotees gathered for the last day of a seven-day festival honoring the goddess Bhadrakali, one of the incarnation of Godess Durga.
Kerala Home minister Ramesh Chennithala, who visited the spot earlier, said 40 bodies have been identified. Union Home Ministry confirmed death of 83 people.
Even though the firework display competition is a regular feature, reports coming are that there was no permission to hold this yearly event. Reports also confirmed that unexploded explosives were also recovered besides sticks of dyanamite were also seized from the spot.
Chief Minister Oommen Chandy said that the fire has been brought under control now the next task would be to ensure fair treatment to the temple fire victims. Prime Minister Narendra Modi announced an ex-gratia of Rs 2 lakh to family members of those dead and Rs 50,000 to the injured.
To ensure proper treatment is given, Prime Minister Narendra Modi was accompanied by a team of burn specialist doctors, reports said. The PM has also directed Union Health Minister JP Nadda to reach the spot and ensure proper treatment to the injured.
Since Kerala is facing assembly election, state minister has written a letter to the Election Commission of India requesting it not to include compensation and treatment under the model code of conduct ambit.
BJP chief Amit Shah has also cancelled all his engagements in Kerala and would rush directly to Kollam. Congress vice-president Rahul Gandhi is also expected to reach Kollam in the evening.