Udayavni Special

IISc. blast: Case of criminal negligence booked against two professors 


Team Udayavani, Dec 7, 2018, 4:46 PM IST

Bengaluru: A day after a cylinder blast on the Indian Institute of Science premises claimed the life of an engineer and left three others critically injured the police have booked a case of criminal negligence against two institute professors.

The professors – G. Jagadeesh and K.P.J. Reddy are the founders of the startup Super Wave Technology Private Ltd. (SWTPL), which works out of the Aerospace Engineering Department’s Laboratory for Hypersonic and Shock Wave Research at IISc. The victim, Manoj Kumar, and his colleagues worked at the startup.

The security chief of IISc, Chandrashekhar, filed a complaint with the Sadashivnagar Police against Jagadeesh and Reddy, on Thursday, claiming that they were in charge of the lab and were responsible for ensuring that the equipment being used was safe. 

While no arrests have been made so far, a case has been registered against the professors under 304A (causing death by negligence) and 338 (Causing grievous hurt by act endangering life or personal safety of others) of the IPC. 

According to the police, Wednesday’s explosion was likely to have been triggered when the four project engineers were working on a “propelling experiment” as part of their research. “However, owing to some technical snag, the explosion occurred and Manoj Kumar who was standing close to the hydrogen cylinder died on the spot,” said the police. “The exact cause of the explosion will be known only after questioning the three injured men, and once we get the FSL report,” a senior officer said.

Sources in the FSL team said the explosion was likely to have been triggered by a spark. The forensic team is sifting through evidence to trace the source of the spark. Meanwhile, a team of senior scientists from IISc. are also conducting an internal probe into the incident.

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