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Delhi court finds 12 guilty in Uphaar cinema fire

NEW DELHI (Reuters) - A city court convicted 12 people on Tuesday in connection with a fire in a cinema hall in New Delhi that killed 59 people a decade ago, exposing the poor safety standards at public places in the country’s capital.

The court found the 12, including two of the Ansal brothers who owned the Uphaar Grand cinema hall, guilty of various charges including causing death due to negligence, TV news channels said.

They face varying prison terms and sentencing is due on Wednesday.

Ten years ago, a small fire had broken out in an electrical transformer which hours later exploded in flames during the premiere of a Bollywood movie which dramatised a 1971 battle between India and Pakistan.

Most of the victims were trapped in the balcony and suffocated to death when poisonous smoke engulfed the hall in an upmarket south Delhi area, which was packed to capacity.