MP: Factory owner, manager booked for culpable homicide after 5 labourers die of inhaling suspected poisonous gas

02:48 PM Aug 31, 2023 | Team Udayavani |

Police have registered a case of culpable homicide against the owner and manager of a processed food products factory in Morena district of Madhya Pradesh after five labourers died there due to inhalation of a suspected poisonous gas, an official said on Thursday.


The police have taken the factory manager into custody, but the owner is on the run, he said.

Five labourers, including three brothers, died after inhaling the suspected poisonous gas at Sakshi Food Products factory in Dhanela area of the district on Wednesday. The factory makes tutti frutti, made using raw papaya, and sugar-free chemicals used in food products.

Gas had started emanating from a tank inside the factory around 11 am on Wednesday and the five labourers entered it one after the other to check it, officials said. ”After the incident, a case was registered under the Indian Penal Code (IPC) section 304 (culpable homicide not amounting to murder) against factory owner Srajal Agrawal and its manager Sanjay Kushwaha,” Noorabad police station in-charge Malkhan Singh Chouhan said.

Gwalior-based Industrial Safety Department’s deputy director Anand Raisardar said there was negligence in taking safety measures at the factory and untrained workers were asked to enter the tank without any oxygen cylinder and safety kit.


There was a lack of ventilation or exhaust fans in the hall in which the tanks were situated, he said.

”The poisonous gas could have been formed due to mixing of papaya with salt, instead of a chemical, which led to the accident,” he said, blaming the factory management for the loss of lives. Factory owner Agrawal’s father, however, claimed that they have been using this method of mixing papaya with salt at the factory for years, and the deceased labourers had been carrying out these tasks for quite some time.

Terming the incident as ”unfortunate”, he also claimed that no such gas was formed in the rest of the five tanks situated in the hall which were also cleaned by the labourers.


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