Four of family smothered to death in massive house fire in Delhi


PTI, Oct 26, 2021, 12:44 PM IST

New Delhi: Four members of a family died on Tuesday after a fire broke out on the third floor of a building in East Delhi’s Old Seemapuri area, officials said.

The incident took place when the victims were asleep, they said.

The deceased have been identified as Horilal (59), his wife Reena (55), their son Ashu (24), and daughter Rohini (18). The family members were sleeping on the third floor of the house, while their 22-year-old son Akshay had a narrow escape as he was sleeping on the second floor, they said.

A call about the fire was received at around 4 am and four fire tenders were rushed to the spot, said Atul Garg, director, Delhi Fire Services.

Domestic articles in a room on the third floor of the house caught fire, resulting in the death of four people. The victims were found dead on the spot. The building comprised ground plus three floors and was situated in an area of about 25 square yards, he said, adding that it was a minor fire.

Deputy Commissioner of Police (Shahadra) R Sathiyasundaram said, “Our police team and Delhi Fire Services staff reached the spot immediately and the fire was brought under control. The crime team, officials from Forensic Science Laboratory, and other senior officials also visited the scene of incidence.”

Police said the fire might have broken out and spread across the third floor of the building. The victims might have died due to inhaling smoke, but only the post-mortem report will be able to ascertain the exact cause of death.

Akshay, the only surviving member of the family, works as a laborer in Safiabad. He had come home at around 2 am after work. He went to the third floor to get food and later slept on the second floor. He survived since the fire did not spread from the third floor of the building, police said.

Horilal was working as a peon in Shastri Bhawan, Delhi, and was due to retire in March 2022. His wife worked as a sweeper in MCD. His daughter was a class 12 student at a government school while his son was unemployed, they said.

All the bodies have been shifted to Guru Teg Bahadur hospital mortuary for post-mortem, they said.

A case has been registered under IPC section 436 (mischief by fire or explosive substance with intent to destroy house) and 304A (causing death by negligence), the DCP said.

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