LAHORE - Two workers were killed while six others wounded when boiler of a cloth-pressing unit set up inside a house exploded in Township area, rescue workers said on Monday. Two among the injured were said to be in a critical condition till Monday night.

An eyewitness told the police that the blast was so powerful that it shattered the windowpanes of nearby buildings. “The roof also came down within seconds because of the intensity of the explosion,” according to Shahid, who is under medical treatment at the intensive care unit (ICU) of the Jinnah Hospital.

A 14-year-old worker, identified as Raju, died on the spot while seven others including owner of the cloth-pressing unit sustained severe burns. They were rushed to the hospital by Edhi ambulance service where 40-year-old house owner, Kashif, succumbed to injuries. The police have removed the bodies to the morgue.

According to an injured, they were busy in work at the cloth-pressing unit located near Girja Chowk when all a sudden the boiler exploded because of gas-pressure. “It was a very powerful blast as it shook the entire building and the rooftop fell on us,” says Ahmed.

Many residents came out of their houses in panic following the blast. Police and rescue workers rushed to the spot soon after the incident and managed to pull out all the eight victims after hectic efforts.

Three of the six injured were identified as Ahmed, Hamayun, Shahid, while three other workers are unidentified so far.

Residents said that Kashif had been running the cloth-pressing unit in the residential area for last six years. Although the district administration was, time and again, told about the illegal unit but the authorities did not pay heed to their repeated complaints. Further investigations are in process.