New Delhi: No less than 27 lives were snuffed out after a massive fire broke out in a 4-storey office building near pillar number 544 of Mundka metro station in west Delhi.
Two owners of the firm - Harish Goel and Varun Goel - have been arrested.. The owner of the building, which did not have safety clearance from the fire department, is on the run, and has been identified as Manish Lakra, police said.
The rescue and search operation was still underway when reports last trickled in on Friday night. Information about the blaze was received at 4.40 pm. It was panic stations when the local police reached the spot and broke windows to extricate those trapped inside.
Around 60-70 people were rescued, the police said, adding some people were still trapped inside. Of them, more than 40 sustained burn injuries and have been hospitalized. The third floor of the ill-fated building was still to be accessed and casualties were expected to mount. Initially, 25 fire tenders were rushed to the spot to control the situation. But the fire was yet to be extinguished at 11 pm and the entire building has enveloped in smoke.
The fire was initiated on the 1st floor of the building which is an office of a CCTV cameras and router manufacturing company.
Meanwhile, Prime Minister Narendra Modi, President Ram Nath Kovind and Delhi Chief Minister Arvind Kejriwal expressed their condolences.
"Extremely saddened by the loss of lives due to a tragic fire in Delhi. My thoughts are with the bereaved families. I wish the injured a speedy recovery," tweeted PM Modi.
"Distressed by the tragic fire accident at a building near Mundka Metro Station in Delhi. My condolences to the bereaved families. I wish for speedy recovery of the injured," tweeted the President.
"Shocked and pained to know abt this tragic incident. I am constantly in touch wid officers. Our brave firemen are trying their best to control the fire and save lives. God bless all," wrote the Delhi CM.