Naraina lift incident: Police file murder case against factory owner


The Delhi Police on Monday lodged a case against the owner of the gutka-manufacturing factory in Naraina Industrial Area (phase 1), where three men died and another sustained grievous injuries after a lift came crashing down on Sunday afternoon, under sections 304 (culpable homicide not amounting to murder) and 337 (causing hurt by act endangering life or personal safety of others) of the Indian Penal Code. Police said the factory owner is at large and several teams have been formed to nab him.

The deceased men have been identified as Kulwant Singh (30) and Deepak Kumar (26) — both residents of Inderpuri– and Sunny (33), a resident of Suleman Nagar. All of them were declared dead on arrival at Deen Dayal Upadhyay Hospital. The injured man has been identified as Suraj (24), a resident of Gol Market, police said.

Police also said they had sealed the factory; however, during a visit to the site on Monday afternoon, HT found it open. To be sure, no work was in progress on the premises.

“We are tracking the factory owner Indradev Tripathi, whose negligence has taken three lives so far. Several dedicated teams have been formed to nab him. He is presently at large. A team of forensic experts has also been asked to visit the spot. We are collecting all the evidence so that the victim’s families can get maximum compensation and the accused gets maximum punishment by the court,” deputy commissioner of police (west) Ghanshyam Bansal said.

Shriniwas Rajoura, the SHO of Naraina police station, said that according to locals, the factory did not have a bona fide licence for the lift. “To verify the claim, we’ve written to the department concerned. We are also looking for Shailendra Kumar, who is the manager of the factory, who is on the run after this accident,” he said.

Waiting outside the mortuary of Deen Dayal Upadhyay Hospital, Pankaj Kumar, the cousin of one of the deceased men Sunny (31) – who works in another factory– said that he heard a rattling sound around 3pm on Sunday. “We rushed there and found that the hook of the lift had broken and blood was seeping out of the closed lift cabin. Before we could do something, the factory manager and his men pushed us out of the premises. In the next 15 minutes, every employee of the factory was asked to leave the premises. Since we have to deposit our phones with the security guard at the gate before entering the premises, we had no option but to wait for the manager. Around 5.15pm, we saw an ambulance drive up to the factory gate and all the victims were taken to hospital,” he said.

Family members of the deceased men alleged that despite gross violations of safety norms, police have neither arrested the accused nor sealed the premises of the factory.

“They have yet not sealed the premises It could give the accused a chance to tamper evidence against him. When we asked the police who will bear the cost of our daily expenses, they said that only the court can grant us compensation. They also said that since the deceased men were not directly employed by the company, but were outsourced from a housekeeping company, it will be hard for them to ask the factory owner for any compensation,” said Manoj Singh, the cousin of Kulwant Singh, one of the deceased men.

Dinesh Kumar, the brother-in-law of Suraj, the lone survivor who is admitted to a private hospital, said, “Suraj is in a coma. I told the SHO of Naraina police station that the hospital staff are asking us to deposit over 10 lakh before starting Suraj’s treatment. He said that police cannot interfere with the charges stipulated by private hospitals. We have no option but to hope for some miracle,” he said.

Despite repeated attempts, neither the factory owner nor the manager could be contacted as their phones were switched off.

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