At least 27 dead in New Delhi building fire

More than 50 rescued in continuing search operation with fears toll could be much higher

At least 27 dead in Delhi building blaze

At least 27 dead in Delhi building blaze
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At least 27 people died in a fire in a commercial building near Mundka Metro Station in New Delhi, India, on Friday, emergency services said.

Dozens of people have been rescued and firefighters are now cleaning up after the fire, police said. More than 30 fire engines as well as ambulances were still at the scene late into the night.

“The fire has been put out now,” a fire department official told AFP. “The total number of dead is 27. [The] search operation is on.”

The building was a four-storey structure mostly comprised of office space.

The blaze began on the first floor of the building, which housed the offices of a security camera and router manufacturing company, NDTV quoted police official Sameer Sharma as saying.

The Indian Express newspaper said two owners of the firm have been detained for questioning while The Times of India reported that the owner of the building had also been taken into custody.

Atul Garg, director of Delhi Fire Services, said the building had not been inspected by the fire department and was not equipped with fire safety equipment such as extinguishers.

Indian Prime Minister Narendra Modi tweeted his sorrow over the loss of life and wished “the injured a speedy recovery”.

Fires are common in India due to poor building practices, overcrowding and a lack of adherence to safety regulations.

The Indian capital of 20 million people is currently suffering through a heatwave, with temperatures of up to 46°C recorded in some places.

Updated: May 14, 2022, 12:28 PM