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At least 5 killed in fire at fireworks godown in Tamil Nadu’s Madurai, rescue operation underway

Police officials, along with two fire tenders rushed to the spot immediately to douse the fire.

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At least 5 killed in fire at fireworks godown in Tamil Nadu's Madurai, rescue operation underway

At least five people were killed in a fire at a fireworks godown in Tamil Nadu’s Chennai. The incident happened at Thirumangalam in the Madurai district on Thursday.

According to the reports, the locals informed the police about the incident. Police officials, along with two fire tenders rushed to the spot immediately to douse the fire.

The senior police officer from the Sindupatty police station said the cause of the fire is yet to be known, however, prima facie states it to be an accidental fire.

Another official said the death toll may increase as the chances of more bodies being trapped inside the debris are higher. He said the debris is being cleared as they have heard that many bodies are dismembered. Identification of the deceased are difficult, he said.

The police said the investigation is currently underway.

Earlier today, eight Indians among ten people were killed after a fire broke out in a garage in the Maldives. The fire broke out in the M. Nirufehi area near the Maaveyo Mosque around 12:30 am, however, the cause of the fire is not known.

Earlier last month, a major fire broke out at an Amazon storage facility in Andhra Pradesh’s Chittoor district. Several products, including, laptops, batteries and phones worth nearly Rs 6 lakh stored in the facility at the time of the accident, as well as office furniture, were destroyed in the fire.

Tamil Nadu News

Income Tax raids 40 locations linked to Tamil Nadu Minister Senthil Balaji, clash between DMK workers and officers

The searches were carried in Karur, Coimbatore and other cities, said reports.

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Income Tax raids 40 locations linked to Tamil Nadu Minister Senthil Balaji, clash between DMK workers and officers

On Friday, the Income Tax Department carried out raids at 40 different locations linked to Tamil Nadu Minister V Senthil Balaji.

As per reports, the raids were conducted in 40 locations at premises, offices of government contractors having their association with Minister Balaji. The raids also include relatives of Balaji.

The searches were carried in Karur, Coimbatore and other cities, said reports.

V Senthil Balaji is the state’s Electricity Minister and is strongman of MK Stalin’s DMK from Karur. Balaji also holds the portfolio of Prohibition and Excise.

Meanwhile, clashes broke out between DMK party workers and IT officials who arrived at Balaji’s brother Ashok’s premises in Karur to conduct the searches.

The officials were allegedly asked to produce their ID cards and were questioned, party workers gathered in large numbers prevented the officials from doing their works and raised slogans.

Reports said, some also vandalised the authorities official vehicle breaking the mirror and windshield.

The raids come at a time when Tamil Nadu Chief Minister MK Stalin is out on an official foreign tour.

The Supreme Court also had recently ordered a fresh inquiry against Minister Balaji and two others in connection to an alleged job recruitment scam in the state.

As per reports, Balaji has been accused of taking bribes from job aspirants in exchange of their recruitment in the state transport corporation between 2011 and 2015.

The opposition in the other hand has been making demands to remove Balaji from the state cabinet following the recent hooch tragedy in the state which took down the lives of 20 individuals.

A BJP delegation led by state president K Annamali had earlier also met  Tamil Nadu Governor R N Ravi handing over a petition demanding dismissal of Balaji as a Minister for his alleged involvment in the cash for jobs scam.

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India News

9 arrested after 13 dead in Tamil Nadu hooch tragedy, 4 cops suspended

Nine people were arrested while four policemen have been suspended after at least 13 people died and many others fell ill due to consumption of spurious liquor in Tamil Nadu on Sunday, officials said.

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Illicit liquor kills 10 People in Tamil Nadu

Nine people were arrested while four policemen have been suspended after at least 13 people died and many others fell ill due to consumption of spurious liquor in Tamil Nadu on Sunday, officials said.

According to the police, 13 people died after consuming spurious liquor in two separate incidents in Villupuram and Chengalpattu district of Tamil Nadu on Sunday.

They said that nine people died in Marakkanam area of Villupuram district while four others lost their lives in Maduranthakam region of Chengalpattu district due to consumption of illicit liquor.

A senior police official said that following the tragic incident, four police officials were suspended for dereliction of duty while 57 cases were registered against producers and suppliers of spurious liquor and gutka (chewing tobacco), adding that nine people have been arrested so far and more arrests are expected.

Inspector General of Police (North) N Kannan said over two dozen people are currently hospitalized after consuming spurious liquor, adding that the illicit spirit might have been mixed with ethanol-methanol.

Giving details, the senior officer said that five people were hospitalized in Chengalpattu district out whom four died during treatment.

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The top cop said that one of the prime accused, identified as Ammavasai, has been arrested in connection with the Chengalpattu incident, adding that some accused involved in the two incidents are absconding and the police has constituted special teams to nab them.

IGP Kannan said preliminary investigations suggest that industrial strength liquor which is unfit for human consumption has been used in the manufacturing of the spurious liquor which the victims consume.

He said that following the deaths, three inspectors and four sub-inspectors have been suspended from both districts for dereliction of duty.

Meanwhile, Tamil Nadu Chief Minister MK Stalin condoled the deaths and announced a compensation of Rs 10 lakhs for the families of the deceased victims and Rs 50,000 for those currently hospitalized.

In a statement, the Chief Minister said that four police officials— Marakkanam inspector Arul Vadivazhagan, Sub-Inspector Deeban, Kottakuppam Prohibition Enforcement Wing police station inspector Mariya Sofi Manjula and Sub-Inspector Sivagurunathan—have been suspended for dereliction of duty.

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The Kerala Story row: Tamil Nadu cops halt special screening in Chennai attended by BJP leaders

Police in Tamil Nadu’s Chennai stopped a special screening of ‘The Kerala Story’ today morning, days after the controversial Hindi film was taken off the screens by theatre owners in the state citing poor audience response and law and order threats.

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The Kerala Story

Police in Tamil Nadu’s Chennai stopped a special screening of ‘The Kerala Story’ today morning, days after the controversial Hindi film was taken off the screens by theatre owners in the state citing poor audience response and law and order threats.

As per reports, on Wednesday morning, a special screening of the Adah Sharma-starrer had been organized for top Tamil Nadu BJP leaders at Chennai’s famed Le Magic Lantern Preview Theater, but the event was foiled by the Chenna Police who arrived at the premises and stopped the screening of the film, citing law and order issues.

Reports said that senior BJP leaders were among some of the people invited for the screening. However, the saffron party has said that it did not organize the screening.

 A report quoting Tamil Nadu BJP vice-president Narayanan Thirupathy as saying that the BJP had nothing to do with the planned screening even though the party’s senior leaders had been invited to attend the event.

Read Also: Road rage caught-on-cam: Driver assaulted by bike-borne men on busy Delhi road, 4 held | WATCH

‘The Kerala Story’ controversy

‘The Kerala Story’ has sparked a massive controversy since its first trailer—which claimed that 32,000 women from the state were converted to Islam and recruited by global terror group Islamic State—  hit the screens in November last year.

Kerala Chief Minister Pinarayi Vijayan who has vehemently opposed the film, recently termed it as a “deliberately produced” piece of Sangh Parivar propaganda aimed to create communal divide and spread hatred among Hindus and Muslims in the state.

The film was issued an ‘A’ certificate by the Censor Board of Film Certification (CBFC) and told to delete 10 scenes, including an interview with a former chief minister of Kerala, ahead of its theatrical release.

The BJP has vociferously backed the Sudipto Sen directorial with even Prime Minister Narendra Modi praising the film for “exposing a terror conspiracy” and accusing the Congress of “siding with terrorists” and trying to appease them for political gain by opposing the film’s release.

On Monday, West Bengal Chief Minister Mamata Banerjee banned the screening of the controversial Bollywood film in the state, while on May 7 (Sunday), multiplexes in Tamil Nadu stopped screenings of the ‘The Kerala Story’ citing law and order threats and poor response to the movie from the audience in the southern state.

Meanwhile, the Supreme Court on Tuesday agreed to hear a plea challenging the Kerala High Court’s interim order which refused to ban the release of Adah Sharma starrer. The hearing is listed on May 15.

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