Fire at New Delhi hotel kills at least 17

Delhi fire: Karol Bagh's Hotel Arpit Palace in India goes up in flames | Daily Star

Delhi fire: Karol Bagh's Hotel Arpit Palace in India goes up in flames | Daily Star

Former India and Delhi cricketer Gautam Gambhir has hit out at the regulators in the aftermath of the tragic fire at Hotel Arpit Palace in the capital's Karol Bagh area early Tuesday (February 12) morning.

A woman and a child also died in the blaze.

Fire brigade and police officials said the death toll had risen from nine to at least 17 people, with four others sustaining injuries.

Dozens were also severely injured in the fire and have been rushed to nearby hospitals. Most people jumped out of the upper floors of the hotel to save their lives. "The status of the staff who jumped is yet to be known".

"Buildings can only be constructed up to four floors in Delhi", Delhi's home minister Satyendra Jain told NDTV.

A call was received at 4.30 am from Karol Bagh's Arpit Palace Hotel and immediately 25 fire tenders were rushed to the spot, IANS quoted an officer of the Delhi fire department as saying.

"There was wooden panelling on corridors because of which people could not use corridors to evacuate", another fire officer told reporters. We recovered only two dead bodies from the corridors and the rest 15 from inside the rooms where there was no fire.

"When the fire tenders reached the spot, flames were leaping out of the building". But the building appeared to have six floors, including a basement and a kitchen built on top of the roof, Jain said.

Most of the victims were sleeping when the fire broke out, believed to have been caused by a short circuit, media said.

The disaster is the latest of its kind in India, where poor health and safety standards - especially in hotels and facilities for the poor - are all too common.

"People have to come out of the room and take the staircase but the staircase itself was on fire, so how they will go out?"

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