Two persons were killed while another seriously injured after being electrocuted at Alipore Zoo today.

The incident took place at around 1 pm when some of the workers of a private advertisement company were putting up a hoarding in front of the elephant enclosure. The three labourers Tarini Ghosh, 31 and Pradip Das, 45 and Litan Das, 37 are said to have come in contact with a live wire while installing the hoarding.

The security personnel on duty and other staff of the zoo rushed to the spot and informed the authorities about the incident. The three workers were rushed to the hospital where Tarini, and Pradip were declared dead.

The third worker, Litan, who is a resident of Ranges, is battling for life in a private hospital in Ekbalpore. He had to be put on ventilator support as his condition was critical, sources informed.

The local police from Watgunge police station, officials of the engineering wing of the Public Works Department and staff of Calcutta Electric Supply Corporation (CESC) also rushed to the spot to take note of the situation.

Bharatiya Janata Party leader and the leader of the workers’ union of the zoo, Mr Rakesh Singh visited the spot and alleged negligence on the part of the zoo authorities. Coming down heavily on the zoo officials he said, ” People cannot enter here without the permission of the zoo director. So with whose permission were these workers here on a day of lockdown?

According to Mr Asis Kumar Samanta, director of the zoo, the private advertisement company that had been tendered to put up the hoardings had put up a camp inside. ” The labourers of the company had put up a camp in the fourth hour and were working inside the zoo. At around 1 pm we got the news about the workers being electrocuted.

They were immediately rushed to the hospital in the vehicle owed by the zoo. A three-member committee has been formed by the state forest department.

The committee will investigate as to what precautions they had taken while working and what was the reason behind the incident,” he added.

Alipore zoo is the oldest zoological park in India and is one of the hotspots of the city. It has been shut to visitors since March 17 because of the outbreak of the coronavirus.