Shoe godown blaze: Extreme heat obstructs police probe for 3rd day

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New Delhi, Jun 23 (PTI) Police on Wednesday said extreme heat and vulnerable building structure caused hindrance in carrying out investigation for the third consecutive day at the shoe factory where a major fire broke out two days ago.

Firefighters have identified two spots inside the building in Udyog Nagar where suspected charred human remains were spotted but only DNA sampling will help in ascertaining the identity of the six workers who are reported to be missing, they said.

Six fire tenders are still at the spot conducting search operations, said an official, adding samples are yet to be collected from the two-storey building by forensic experts for further examination.

'The temperature inside the building is still extreme. Only the firemen have been able to get inside yet. They have informed us that charred remains suspected to be of humans have been spotted by them at two spots inside the building,' a senior police officer said.

'Our main concern is to be able to get the samples lifted from the spot for further examination so that we can get DNA profiling done to ascertain and establish the identity of the missing men,' he said.

He said another hindrance is the structure of the building which is 'weak' and in a 'vulnerable' position. The structure is highly unstable now and the terrace of the building has already caved in.

'Neither our staff nor the forensic experts have been able to enter the building yet. Our police teams have had access to limited areas of the premises but again due to extreme temperature, the samples are yet to be lifted from the spot,' the police officer added.

Deputy Commissioner of Police (Outer) Parvinder Singh said, 'Our teams are conducting raids and efforts are on to nab Pankaj Garg, who is the owner of the company. He has been absconding since the day of the incident along with his father who is the director of the company.' The forensic experts from Forensic Science Laboratory, Rohini are likely to visit the spot on Thursday as they still have not been able to enter the building because of the high temperature, police said.

Prima facie, electric short-circuit was suspected to be reason behind the fire at the building which did not have any fire-safety equipment in place and was heavily jammed with highly combustible materials, police had said. PTI AMP MA MA MA

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