At least twelve workers were killed and 15 feared trapped in the wall collapse of a salt factory in the Halvad GIDC of the Morbi district in Saurashtra region of Gujarat. The Morbi district administration has claimed that 90 per cent of the rescue operation has been completed.
Sharing information about the tragic incident, Minister of State for Labour and Employment Brijesh Merja said that around 12 p.m., a wall collapsed in the Sagar Salt factory situated in Halvad GIDC. Till the time he briefed the media in Gandhinagar, 12 dead bodies of the workers were found from the debris.
He added that 90 per cent of the rescue operation has been completed, but it is not yet clear what caused the wall collapse. It is a matter of investigation, which will be done by the police. Soon the state government will announce compensation for the family members of the victims, he said.
The Minister said that the factory processed and packaged salt.
Prime Minister Narendra Modi condoled the demise of workers and announced Rs 2 lakh each from PMNRF to the next of kin of those who lost their lives due to the tragedy in Morbi and Rs 50,000 for injured ones.
"The tragedy in Morbi caused by a wall collapse is heart-rending. In this hour of grief, my thoughts are with the bereaved families. May the injured recover soon. Local authorities are providing all possible assistance to the affected," he said.
The tragedy in Morbi caused by a wall collapse is heart-rending. In this hour of grief, my thoughts are with the bereaved families. May the injured recover soon. Local authorities are providing all possible assistance to the affected.— Narendra Modi (@narendramodi) May 18, 2022
Sources from the factory said, workers died after bags of salt stacked along the wall fell on them, and they got trapped.
Morbi District Collector J.B. Patel and District Superintendent of Police Rahul Tripathi along with their team rushed to the accident site and closely supervised the rescue operations.
The district administration pressed in JCB machines to remove salt bags, hard rock salt and wall debris.
SP Tripathi said once the rescue operation is concluded and the area is completely cleared, FSL team with local police will investigate the incident. If factory management is found guilty for any negligence, a case can be registered against them too.