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The fire at the Central Ammunition Depot in Pulgaon, Maharashtra has been completely doused and situation brought under control. The disaster claimed 16 lives including two Army officers and left 17 persons injured. Informing this in New Delhi yesterday evening, Director General of Military Operations Lieutenant General Ranbir Singh said, the cause of fire is yet to be ascertained. He said, action to assess damage is in progress and inquiry has been ordered. General Singh said, Defence Minister Manohar Parrikar and Army Chief General Dalbir Singh and senior defence officials have visited the site to take stock of the situation. He also informed that the medical condition of the injured personnel is reported to be stable and army medical teams have been moved from Pune to provide specialist medical attention.
Meanwhile, Union Defence Minister Manohar Parrikar has ruled out any sabotage in the fire at ammunition depot. He told reporters that they are not ruling out any possibility but there is no sabotage as such. It is too early to speculate about the cause, he added.
Mr Parrikar, who visited the injured personnel at a hospital in Pulgaon, said 130 tonnes of anti-tank mines were destroyed in the fire. He said the 16 defence personnel who died in the mishap prevented a greater disaster with their fire-fighting effort. He said necessary compensation will be paid to the victims and their kin as per the norms.

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