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23 dead in explosion at Punjab Cracker Factory

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CHANDIGARH: 23 people were killed and more than a dozen others injured, some of them seriously, when a powerful blast took place inside a three-storey firecracker factory in Batala town of Punjab on Wednesday afternoon. Located on the Samadh road, the illegal factory was being run in a residential area.

Some factory workers are still believed to be trapped inside the building rubble. “The immediate priority before the district administration was to rescue the people and to provide medical aid to the people who have been injured” Deputy Commissioner, Gurdaspur Vipul Ujjawal said. According to eyewitnesses, the blast took place around 3:30 and people came out of their homes when they heard a loud noise.

The blast was so powerful that it also damaged four nearby buildings which include a Gurudwara, a computer centre and a car garage. The explosion was heard kilometres away, local residents said. The explosion damaged vehicles parked nearby. Eyewitness Sukhraj Singh said one car landed in a drain because of the impact.

President Ram Nath Kovind expressed grief. “Saddened to learn about the loss of lives due to an explosion at a firecracker factory in Batala, Punjab,” he tweeted. Vice-President Venkaiah Naidu and Congress leader Rahul Gandhi too offered condolences. Gurdaspur MP Sunny Deol also said he was saddened by the tragedy.

Meanwhile, the Punjab Chief Minister Captain Amarinder Singh ordered a magisterial inquiry into the Batala firecracker factory blast. ADC (Batala) has been asked to conduct the inquiry into the tragic incident.

Captain Amarinder Singh also directed the Rural Development and Panchayats Minister Tript Rajinder Singh Bajwa to immediately rush to the spot to oversee the relief and rescue operations.

Chief Minister Amarinder Singh announced an ex-gratia of Rs. 2 lac for the family of deceased and Rs. 50,000 for the seven severely injured, who were referred to the Amritsar Medical College. He also announced Rs. 25,000 for those who sustained minor injuries.

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Netaji’s slogan ‘Tum mujhe khoon do mai tumhe ajadi dunga ‘ is remembered every Independence Day

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Netaji Subhash Chandra Bose not only instigated the young revolutionaries with his slogan but also made an unforgettable contribution and sacrifice in the freedom movement.

We remember Netaji’s slogan ‘You give me blood, I will give you freedom’ on every Independence Day. Netaji’s slogan rests on the tongue of every young revolutionary.

Apart from the slogan ‘You give me blood…’ there are other memorable things of Subhash Chandra Bose that give us the passion to live. His words reflect the reality of life.

Netaji reached Burma on 4 July 1944 with his Azad Hind Fauj. This was the place where he said the famous words “Give me blood, and I will give you freedom.

Famous thoughts of Netaji –

* Remember the biggest crime is to endure injustice and compromise with wrong. It is our duty to pay for our freedom with our blood.

* We should have the strength to protect the freedom that we get from our sacrifice and hard work.

* As a soldier you must always cherish and live up to three ideals: truth, duty and sacrifice.

* The soldier who is always loyal to his country, who is always ready to sacrifice his life, is invincible. If you also want to be invincible, then incorporate these three ideals into your heart.

* A person who does not have a craze can never become great. But inside it, there must be something else.

* Those who rely on their strength move forward and are injured with borrowed strength.

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