Explosion Kills 6 in Chin State Capital

By Moe Myint 23 November 2015

RANGOON — Six people have died and another five are wounded after what appears to be an accidental explosion sparked Sunday night at a home in Hakha, the capital of Chin State.

Five of the deceased were members of the same family, who lived as tenants in the home where the explosion occurred in Hakha’s Zae Thit quarter. Investigators believe that the gunpowder stockpile belonged to one of the deceased. The explosion leveled the home with such force that it knocked a truck parked nearby onto its side.

“We are still investigating what happened on the ground,” Hong Ngai, the chief minister of Chin State, told The Irrawaddy “I think a witness can say exactly what happened there, he is now at the hospital.”

Hakha police confirmed that six had died in the inferno but declined to give further details, saying that an investigation was ongoing. Local authorities had earlier suggested the household lit a small bonfire for heat on the cool evening, which then accidentally spread to the gunpowder cache.

Speaking to The Irrawaddy on Monday, Zabiak Thawn, the deputy editor of the local Hakha Post newspaper, said the deceased family had recently moved into the home after their previous home collapsed during the August landslides.