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Kumbakonam: Ten convicted for India school fire which killed 94

  • 7-30-2014

A court in India has found 10 people guilty for a school fire in which 94 children were burnt alive in the southern state of Tamil Nadu in 2004.

The owner, headmistress and the principal of the Kumbakonam school are among those convicted.

They are expected to be sentenced later on Wednesday, the court said.

The fire started in the kitchen where food was being cooked to be distributed among the children as part of the free Mid-Day Meal scheme.

The fire soon spread and the school's thatched roof caught fire too.

Some 200 children, between eight and 10 years, were trapped in a classroom and eyewitnesses said that before they could rush out, the roof fell on them like a ball of fire, blocking their escape down the one narrow staircase.

Besides the 94 who were charred to death, dozens of others were injured, some of them seriously.

Twenty-one people were charged and tried in the case. Eleven of them have been acquitted by the court.

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Reproduced under licence from BBC News © 2014 BBC


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