200 fire accidents in Delhi on Diwali, 150 huts gutted

October 29th, 2008 - 9:05 pm ICT by IANS  

New Delhi, Oct 29 (IANS) At least 200 incidents of fire took place in the national capital on Diwali though only one of them was declared serious as flames gutted around 150 huts in northwest Delhi, officials said Wednesday.The fire broke out in the hutments in Jehangirpuri around 10.30 p.m. Tuesday.

According to fire service officials, at least 25 fire-fighting tenders were pressed into service and the flames were doused only after midnight. Three people suffered burn injuries and were admitted to the Babu Jagjivan Ram Hospital.

“The cause of the fire is yet to be ascertained. But it seems it started because of firecrackers,” said a fire brigade official.

As the fire broke out in the hutments, people grew restless and went on a rampage alleging the fire brigade and police officials for arriving late at the scene.

They set a police vehicle afire and hurled stones at police vans and fire tenders. At least four firemen suffered minor injuries in the stone pelting.

“I have lost everything in the fire. We called them (fire officials) many times but they arrived only after 45 minutes,” said Rajkumar, a labourer.

“Had the fire service officials reached on time, our belongings could have been saved. Everyone was very angry. Nobody knows whether our pets have survived the fire,” he added.

The fire officials denied there was any delay.

Deputy Police Commissioner (Northwest Delhi) N.S. Bundela told IANS eight people were arrested and a case has been registered against them for rioting.

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