Team to assess damage caused by Kerala tragedy

Thiruvananthapuram, April 13 (IANS) Three Kerala ministers will head a team of experts to study the destruction caused to civilian property due to the deadly fireworks show at a temple in Kollam.

Chief Minister Oommen Chandy said after the weekly cabinet meeting here that there had been “widespread damage” in and around the premises of the Puttingal Devi temple at Paravur town.

“Many homes have suffered damage, wells have become polluted and agriculture crops have been destroyed,” Chandy said, adding the team will visit the area on Thursday.

Ministers Adoor Prakash, Shibhu Baby John and V.S. Sivakumar will meet people and get a detailed report prepared to know the full extent of destruction to civilian property.

This will help the government take necessary steps to address the issue, said Chandy.

At least 113 people have been killed and scores injured after a huge stock of firecrackers went up in flames in the temple premises early on the morning of Sunday.

Residents say numerous houses in a one-kilometre radius suffered damage of varying kinds. Fifteen were badly damaged.

“The team will also look into the health issues of people,” said Chandy.

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