Police in southern India say 13 workers have been killed in a blaze in a fireworks factory

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A blaze engulfed a fireworks factory in southern India on Monday, killing at least 13 workers and seriously burning seven others, police said.

The fire department was still trying to control the fire by early evening and the bodies could not immediately be retrieved, said Ravi Prakash, a police superintendent in Andhra Pradesh state's East Godavari district

He said the fire broke out during a lunch break at the factory in Vakatippa village. The local government has ordered an investigation.

The fire comes days ahead of Diwali, the Hindu festival of lights, which is marked with fireworks.

India has a huge demand for firecrackers, which are used in religious festivals and weddings. Fires are common in the factories in the absence of proper safety standards.