New Delhi: Saddened by the loss of lives in the fire incident, Serum Institute Chairman & MD Cyrus Poonawalla on Thursday evening announced compensation to the families of those who died int eh incident and said they will get other mandated amounts as per the norms.Also Read - Mother Dog Loses 7 Puppies to Massive Fire, Viral Photos of Her Desperate Search Will Break Your Heart
Issuing a statement, Serum Institute offered condolences to the bereaved family members and called it an extremely sorrowful day for all at SII. Also Read - Video: Property Worth Crores Gutted In Fire At Powerloom Unit In Maharashtra’s Thane | Watch
“Today is an extremely sorrowful day for all of us at SII. We’re deeply saddened and offer our condolences to families of the departed. We’ll be offering compensation of Rs 25 Lakh to each family, in addition to mandated amount as per the norms,” Cyrus Poonawalla, Chairman & MD, said in a statement. Also Read - Bharat Biotech, Serum Institute Seek Full Market Approval For Covaxin, Covishield: DGCI To Review Proposals Today
Five men died after the fire broke out at a five-storeyed under-construction building in the Serum Institute of India’s Manjari premises in Pune on Thursday. As per updates, all the deceased were contract workers, whose bodies were recovered by fire brigade personnel from the top floor and nine people were evacuated from the spot.
Manjari facility is where the Covishield vaccine used in the nationwide inoculation drive against the pandemic is made. The building where fire broke out is one km from the Covishield vaccine manufacturing unit.
However, Serum Institute of India CEO Adar Poonawalla said Covishield vaccine production won’t be hit due to the fire.
“I would like to reassure all governments & the public that there would be no loss of #COVISHIELD production due to multiple production buildings that I had kept in reserve to deal with such contingencies at @SerumInstIndia,” Poonawalla tweeted.
“We have just received some distressing updates; upon further investigation we have learnt that there has unfortunately been some loss of life at the incident. We are deeply saddened and offer our deepest condolences to the family members of the departed,” Poonawalla added.
Mayor Murlidhar Mohol said fire officials recovered the five bodies during the cooling operation. Maharashtra Deputy Chief Minister Ajit Pawar said the state government has ordered a probe into the fire.
Chief Fire Officer Prashant Ranpise said 15 water tankers were pressed into action and the fire was brought under control around 4.30 pm.
Furniture, wiring, cabins were gutted. No major machinery or instruments were stored on the floors where the fire broke out,” he said.
“Anguished by the loss of lives due to an unfortunate fire at the @SerumInstIndia. In this sad hour, my thoughts are with the families of those who lost their lives. I pray that those injured recover at the earliest,” Prime Minister Narendra Modi tweeted.
Serum Institute of India Pvt Ltd is the world’s largest vaccine manufacturer by number of doses produced and sold globally (more than 1.5 billion doses) which includes Polio vaccine as well as Diphtheria, Tetanus, Pertussis, Hib, BCG, r-Hepatitis B, Measles, Mumps and Rubella vaccines, as per the company’s website.