8 killed in Secunderabad electric scooter showroom fire tragedy
Eight persons, most of them tourists, were killed in a massive fire accident that gutted a five-storeyed building in Secunderabad
HYDERABAD: At least eight persons, most of them tourists, were killed in a massive fire accident that gutted a five-storeyed building in Secunderabad late on Monday night. Another 10 persons were injured in the incident. Most of the victims were the occupants of a lodge in the upper floors of Ruby Luxury Pride building complex. The fire broke out in an electric scooter showroom which is located in the ground in the cellar and ground floor of the building. Soon, it spread all over the building including the Ruby lodge in the upper floors.
Telangana Home Minister Mohammed Mehmoodi Ali visited the fire accident site late on Monday night and personally monitored the rescue operations. While three of the victims died at the spot, the remaining succumbed at the hospital. It is believed, most of the deaths occurred due to asphyxiation as the inmates of the lodge were trapped inside, unable to find an escape route. There was a woman among the deceased from the incident. The injured were being treated at Yashoda Hospital and Gandhi Hospital. Three of the deceased were identified as M Harish of Vijayawada, Sitharaman from Chennai and Veerendra, a native of Delhi.
The building is located in the close proximity of the Regional Passport Office and the Secunderabad Railway Station. According to reports, the fire first broke out in the electric bike showroom at around 9.40 pm on Monday night. Due to its heat, the batteries of electric bikes in the ground floor showroom exploded turning it into a massive fire The fire quickly spread to the lodge, located in the upper four floors of the same building.
Police, with the help of fire department personnel and local people, tried hard since Monday night to carry out the evacuation operation. At least, two fire tenders were pressed into service to put out the fire.
It is learnt that most of the rooms in Ruby Lodge had occupants at the time of the fire accident and many of them struggled to breathe due to thick smoke all around. The rescue teams also reportedly found it difficult to make their way inside because of the fire and the asphyxiating smoke.
It is learnt that there were about 25 occupants, mostly tourists, in the lodge at the time of the fire accident. A few of them reportedly tried to climb down the building using the pipes that were close to the windows. Some even reportedly jumped off the building in their desperate bid to save their lives. The fire department personnel were said to have rescued about 9 persons from the lodge.
The authorities have seized the entire building complex to carry out a comprehensive investigation into the fire tragedy. A case has been registered against one Ranjit for running the e-bikes showroom in the cellar in violation of the rules and safety guidelines.
PM Modi expresses shock, announces ex-gratia
Meanwhile, Prime Minister Narendra Modi expressed his shock over the fire accident in Secunderabad which accounted for the lives of eight persons so far. In a tweet posted by his office (@PMOIndia), he offered his condolences to the bereaved families and wished the injured to recover soon. The Prime Minister announced an ex-gratia of Rs 2 lakhs each to the next of the kin of the deceased and Rs 50,000 for the injured.
Some of the occupants of the lodge were identified as Abraham Valthala, Arth Patel, Mahender Singh Bhatt, Ashwini Sila, Thakur, Pridhvi Raj, Chandan Eethi, Ashoth Mamiduvat, Debashish Gupta, Irfan Usman, Ashutosh Singh, Mohammed Javed, Lavar Yadav, Sunil Kumar, Varma and Bin Siyala.