Chandigarh: Three young women lost their lives when a fire broke out on Saturday at a house in Chandigarh where they were staying as paying guests, police said.
As many as five girls were on the first floor of the residential accommodation at Sector 32 when the fire broke out, police said.
Station Fire Officer Lal Bahadur said they received a call around 4 pm and four fire tenders were pressed into service to douse the blaze. It took around 10-15 minutes to put out the fire, the officer said, adding that one of the women saved her life by jumping from the first floor.
"There was very low visibility because of smoke and fire," Bahadur said. "Two women were found unconscious in a room and another with burn injuries was found in another room." With the blaze engulfing the first floor of the house, it was a difficult task for the fire fighters to take out the women out of the room.
Three women, aged 19-22, died in the incident. Two were admitted to a hospital and they are out of danger, Chandigarh Superintendent of Police Vineet Kumar said. The deceased have been identified as Prakshi (from Kotkapura, Punjab), Riya (Kapurthala, Punjab) and Muskan (Hisar, Haryana), the police said.
According to neighbours, around 25-30 women were putting up at the guest house. At time of fire incident, most of them were out of the PG, the police said, adding that a case would be registering against the building owner.
The cause of the fire was yet to be ascertained. Several items, including fan, fridge, beds, on the first floor were charred, the police said.
The fire incident was a grim reminder of the vulnerability of students coming from several states, including Punjab, Haryana and Himachal Pradesh, who put up at the "unsafe" paying guest houses in Chandigarh, which is a hub of educational institutions and that has led to a flourishing business of paying guests.
Students usually put up at nearby paying guests, some of which violate fire safety norms and even lack required permissions that become the cause of such fire incidents
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Updated Date: Feb 22, 2020 21:43:26 IST