A massive fire has erupted in a four-storey commercial building in the Indian capital, killing at least 27 people and leaving several injured.
- Emergency crews are searching the rubble for survivors
- Two people have reportedly been detained for questioning
- The cause of the fire is not known
Fire officials said dozens of people were rescued from the building, which mainly contained shops.
The Press Trust of India news agency reported 12 people had suffered burns in the fire and 50 were evacuated from the building.
Twenty-seven fire engines were at the scene, dousing the flames after battling for more than five hours.
Fire officials said crews were looking for anyone trapped in the rubble.
“The building is a four-storey building used commercially for providing office space to companies,” the Delhi police said in a statement.
The building is located in the Mundka area in western New Delhi.
The cause of the fire and other details were not immediately available.
Building was not equipped with fire safety equipment
Atul Garg, director of Delhi Fire Services, said the building had no clearance from the fire department and it was not equipped with fire safety equipment such as extinguishers.
The casualties occurred on the second floor of the building, where inflammable plastic material used for manufacturing equipment such as security cameras was stored.
The Indian Express newspaper said two owners of a company selling security cameras were detained for questioning as the fire reportedly started from their office. There was no immediate confirmation by the police.
Meanwhile, Indian Prime Minister Narendra Modi said he was “extremely saddened by the loss of lives due to a tragic fire in Delhi”.
“My thoughts are with the bereaved families,” he wrote on Twitter.
“I wish the injured a speedy recovery.”
Indian President Ram Nath Kovind also expressed his condolences to the families of victims.
“Distressed by the tragic fire accident at a building near Mundka Metro Station in Delhi,” he wrote.
“My condolences to the bereaved families. I wish for the speedy recovery of the injured.”
Fires are common in India, where building laws and safety norms are often flouted by builders and residents.