NEW DELHI — Shouting and crying, workers in an Indian denim factory struggled to claw their way up a ladder to a door, their only exit as a fire blazed through fabric and machinery, officials said. Seven people died in the weekend blaze, and families were still waiting Wednesday to recover their relatives’ bodies.
“Smoke kept billowing from the building as workers trapped inside screamed for help,” said a witness who spoke on condition of anonymity because he was worried he’d lose his job.
The factory where the fire occurred, Nandan Denim, has ties to major U.S. retailers, according to its website. Nandan says it supplies jeans, denim and other garments to more than 20 global brands including U.S. companies such as Target, Ann Taylor, Mango and Wrangler, and its sister company supplies Walmart and H&M.
Some of the U.S. and multinational companies listed on the website said they were not actually customers, and many issued statements that strongly condemned dangerous work sites. Nandan Denim is one of the largest denim suppliers in the world.