Power failure, short circuit snuff out eight lives in Jabalpur
Eight people, including four patients, were charred to death and five were injured in a fire that broke out at a private hospital in Jabalpur, Madhya Pradesh, on Monday afternoon, officials said.
The Jabalpur chief medical and health officer, Dr Ratnesh Kuraria, said the hospital had begun functioning on January 5, 2021. He said the private medical facility had two entries-cum-exits, one for outdoor patients and the other for those upstairs.
Many could not escape in time as the hospital had only one exit, eyewitnesses said.
Jabalpur collector Dr Ilayaraja T. said four patients, a caregiver and three other staff members of the New Life Multi-speciality Hospital, housed in a four-storey building, died in the fire.
Of the five injured, two were critical and had been admitted to ICU at the government medical college in Jabalpur.
The collector said the evacuation of patients and other people from the 30-bed hospital was over and no one was trapped in the building. There were 20 to 25 people in the hospital when the blaze started, he added.
The fire broke out around 2.30pm, caused probably by an electrical short circuit, superintendent of police Siddharth Bahuguna said.
The hospital has been gutted, an official said.
Power had tripped around 2.30pm at the hospital. While the power system was switching to the backup, something went wrong and resulted in an electrical short circuit that caused the inferno, the official said.
Madhya Pradesh chief minister Shivraj Singh Chouhan has asked the Jabalpur divisional commissioner to conduct an inquiry. Chouhan has announced a compensation of Rs 5 lakh each for the families of the dead and Rs 50,000 each for the injured.