limestone quarry
Smoke billows from a blast at a limestone quarry while a consignment of gelatin sticks was being unloaded, at Kalasapadu Mandal in Kadapa district, Saturday, May 8, 2021. Image Credit: PTI

Amaravati: At least nine workers were killed in a blast at a limestone mine in Kadapa district of Andhra Pradesh on Saturday but so far only five bodies were identified, police said.

Establishing the identity of the victims was proving an onerous task as the bodies lay dismembered at the site of the blast.

Among those killed were from Pulivendula constituency, they said.

Pulivendula is the native constituency of Chief Minister Y S Jagan Mohan Reddy.

Kadapa district Superintendent of Police K Anburajan told PTI over phone that the blast occurred when a consignment of gelatin sticks was being unloaded at a limestone mine on the outskirts of Mamillapalli village.

The vehicle was fully mangled under the impact of the explosion.

The gelatin sticks were brought from Budwel.

"It is a licensed limestone mine and certified operators had brought the consignment. The blast occurred when the sticks were being unloaded," Anburajan said from the accident site.

The cause of the mishap was yet to be established.

Chief Minister Y S Jagan Mohan Reddy spoke to the Kadapa district officials and enquired about the explosion.

He expressed grief over the death of the workers and extended sympathies to the bereaved families, a CMO release here said.

Leader of Opposition N Chandrababu Naidu too expressed shock over the mishap and demanded that the victims families be paid an ex-gratia of Rs one crore each, on par with that paid to the victims of styrene vapour leak in LG Polymers unit in Visakhapatnam last year.