Published On: Fri, Mar 10th, 2023

No mortar shell fired in Gaya, clarifies Army

Patna: The Indian Army on Thursday clarified that no mortar shell was fired at the training range in Bihar’s Gaya district on Wednesday when the death of three people in a nearby village was blamed on the same.

The statement cited reports and photographs of a crater formed at the site of the incident

According to a statement from Colonel Dushyant Singh Chauhan, the administrative commandant of Danapur Cantonment on the outskirts of the state capital, “no clearance” was given for mortar firing at the Deuri Dumri firing range in Gaya.

“It is clarified that on 8 March 2023, no firing of mortars was carried out at the Deuri Dumri Field Firing Ranges….. all clearances in a Notified Firing Range are obtained on a daily basis prior to the firing from local civil administration and police. No such clearance was asked for mortar firing on 8 March 23,” the official stated.

The statement cited reports and photographs of a crater formed at the site of the incident by the impact of the explosion, to buttress its point.

“It has been noted that certain sections of the social media have been showing a circular shaped hole in the ground indicating it as the point of impact of the mortar shell. Mortar shell detonation on impact does not leave such signatures…..this could be a case of unauthorised collection of a mortar blind shell which fell in the designated impact area on an earlier date, and efforts to dismantle it to extract scrap metal. This could have triggered the detonation, causing the unfortunate accident,” added the statement issued by the Colonel.

Army teams are extending all support and assistance to the district administration to investigate the cause of the tragedy, the statement added.

It also said “The Indian Army extends condolences to the families of those who died and sustained injuries owing to the unfortunate incident near Gulerbed Village located under Barachatti Police Station, District Gaya.”

Meanwhile, the administration in Gaya said it was “probing from all angles” the incident which killed three people and injured as many, all of them members of the same family.

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