Salem: A cooking gas cylinder blast at Karungalpatti here triggered a collapse of three houses, leaving five people dead and 12 injured in the incident.
Chief Minister M K Stalin condoled the deaths and announced ex-gratia of Rs five lakh each to the families of the victims.
Municipal Administration Minister K N Nehru, after visiting the mishap site, said the use of commercial gas cylinder in a house for making snacks and sweets has come to the notice of the government and said the district administration will inquire in detail into the incident and take action against the culprit. Officials suspect such a cylinder could have exploded.
The deceased include three woman, one of them an octogenarian.
A total of 12 people, including a five-year old girl, caught under the debris were rescued and admitted to the Government Hospital here, with the condition of one person said to be critical, police said.
District Collector Karmegham and top police officials rushed to the spot and supervised the rescue operations by Fire and Rescue Personnel, members from National Disaster Response Force and police department.
Meanwhile, chief minister Stalin announced an ex-gratia of Rs five lakh each to the families of the victims and expressed his sympathies with their kin.
Announcing the relief, he said a sum of Rs 50,000 each would be provided to the injured.