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New Delhi
Police in New Delhi on Saturday arrested two people suspected of flouting fire safety rules after at least 27 people were killed in a major fire at a building in the city.
Twelve more were injured in the blaze that engulfed a four-storey building in the Mundka area in the city’s western suburbs on Friday evening, Delhi Fire Services chief Atul Garg told reporters.
Garg said the fire started from the first floor that houses a company which manufactures security cameras and spread to the other floors.
Two brothers, owners of the firm, were arrested by the police, according to Delhi chief minister Arvind Kejriwal, who visited the site on Saturday. The owner of the building had absconded.
The building did not have safety clearances from the fire department nor was it equipped with fire-safety equipment, Garg said.
The blaze turned into a huge conflagration after inflammable plastic material used to manufacture equipment and cardboard for packaging caught fire, he said.
The police has registered a case of culpable homicide not amounting to murder and criminal conspiracy. It can fetch a maximum penalty of life imprisonment. At least 50 people were rescued from the building in operations overnight,
officials said.
There were chaotic scenes as some people were seen jumping out of the building to save themselves, witnesses told news channels. The fire erupted possibly due to an electric short-circuit.
Prime Minister Narendra Modi offered his condolences and authorities announced a compensation for families of the victims. Accidents and fires are fairly common in India, where safety standards are often disregarded. In 2019, a blaze in a factory in Delhi killed
43 people.
Poor fire protection devices, missing emergency exits and outdated electrical systems are often the reasons behind the tragedies.
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