13 more witnesses record statements in Baldia factory fire case

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KARACHI: An anti-terrorism court on Wednesday recorded the statements of 13 more witness, including five survivors of the inferno, in the Baldia factory fire case and summoned more witnesses at the next hearing on January 19.

Jail authorities produced key suspects in Baldia factory fire case, Rehman Bhola, Zubair Charya and others were produced before the court. While Muttahida Qaumi Movement-Pakistan  (MQM-P) leader Rauf Siddiqui was also appeared before the ATC.

In their statements, witnesses said that fire erupted all of a sudden and enfolded the whole factory within minutes. The witnesses told the court that they had learnt about the inferno through the media and added that when they reached at the scene, workers were jumping outside the factory’s broken windows to save lives from the horrific fire.

People burnt in the fire were being taken out of the factory and it was difficult to identify most of the bodies, said the witnesses.

The witnesses informed the court that the bodies were handed over to the heirs a few days after the incident.

More than 332 witnesses have recorded their statements so far. The prosecution had submitted a list of 720 witnesses in the case.

Earlier, a German court, on January 10, had threw out a lawsuit by Pakistani plaintiffs against clothing retailer KiK over a deadly 2012 fire at a Karachi garment factory, saying the statute of limitations had expired.

Dubbed as Pakistan’s 9/11, the blaze at the Ali Enterprises factory, or Baldia Factory Fire, had killed 258 people in one of Pakistan’s worst industrial disasters.

 

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