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Kolkata: Chief Minister Mamata Banerjee has directed the state police to help bring back the dead bodies of nine workers of Malda killed in a carpet factory blast at Bhadohi near Varanasi in Uttar Pradesh.

As the instruction of the CM, state transport minister Suvendu Adhikari and urban development minister Firhad Hakim have left for Malda this evening. They will coordinate with the police and the bereaved families.

The blast took place in the afternoon today at Bhadohi, which is about 45-km from Varanasi.

Several national news outlets have quoted Uttar Pradesh police as saying that the carpet factory, where the blast took place, doubled up as a cracker manufacturing unit without requisite licence.

Of the 11 workers who died on the spot, nine are from Malda, the Chief Minister said in a tweet.

It may be noted that jewelry artisans and garment/home furnishing craftsmen from Malda and Murshidabad districts of Bengal are very high in demand in the factories in UP, Gujarat and, Rajasthan for their skills.