Mumbai fire kills at least 15: police


PV International Desk : Fire tore through a Mumbai building where a rooftop party was being held early Friday, killing at least 15 people and leaving many injured, police said.

The blaze started just after midnight in a top floor restaurant in the centre of the city and quickly spread to two adjacent bars, destroying the entire building in 30 minutes, media reports said.

Most of those who died were women at a party at the restaurant, Mumbai’s disaster management authorities said.

One woman who said she was in the building at the time told of the desperate scenes as people tried to escape.

“There was a stampede and someone pushed me,” Sulbha Arora said on Twitter. “People were running over me even as the ceiling above me was collapsing in flames. Still don’t know how I got out alive. Some powers were definitely protecting me.”

Television footage showed fire engines and emergency teams rushing to the scene as the building was being consumed by flames and dark plumes of smoke rose into the night sky.

“So far the deaths of 15 people have been declared,” S. Jaykumar, a Mumbai police commissioner, told reporters, adding that the cause of the fire was under investigation.

More than a dozen people were taken to nearby hospitals and two were in critical condition, civic authorities said.