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    WorldSeveral Indians among 49 killed in Kuwait Apartment Blaze

    Several Indians among 49 killed in Kuwait Apartment Blaze


    DUBAI/KUWAIT CITY, June 12: A massive fire engulfed a multi-storey building in Kuwait housing foreign workers, mostly Indians, early on Wednesday, killing at least 49 people and injuring more than 50 others, according to officials.

    Most deaths were due to smoke inhalation while residents were sleeping, and a significant number of occupants were evacuated, they added.

    The fire started in a kitchen in the six-storey building in the Mangaf area in Kuwait's southern Ahmadi Governorate, officials said, adding that the building reportedly had nearly 200 people living in it, who are workers of the same company.

    In a statement, the Interior Ministry said that the death toll from the tragic fire has reached 49, the Kuwait Times newspaper reported.

    The ministry said that criminal evidence department personnel are currently working on identifying the victims on site and revealing the cause of the fire and added that strict measures will be taken against building owners who violate the law.

    “Unfortunately, we received a report of a fire at… exactly 6:00 am (0830 IST) in the Mangaf area,” Major General Eid Al-Owaihan, head of the interior ministry's General Department of Criminal Evidence, said.

    The majority of the deceased were Indian nationals from Kerala, Tamil Nadu, and north Indian states. Their ages ranged between 20 and 50 years, he was quoted as saying by English language daily Arab Times.

    The building is rented by the NBTC group.

    Sources said that five firefighters sustained injuries during the rescue operation.

    “In connection with the tragic fire accident involving Indian workers today, the Embassy has put in place an emergency helpline number: +965-65505246. All concerned are requested to connect over this helpline for updates. Embassy remains committed to render all possible assistance,” the Indian Embassy in Kuwait said in a post on X.

    Indians constitute 21 per cent (1 million) of the total population of Kuwait and 30 per cent of its workforce (approximately 9 lakhs).

    “The fire mishap in Kuwait City is saddening. My thoughts are with all those who have lost their near and dear ones. I pray that the injured recover at the earliest. The Indian Embassy in Kuwait is closely monitoring the situation and working with the authorities there to assist the affected,” Prime Minister Narendra Modi said on X.

    At the direction of Prime Minister Modi, Minister of State for External Affairs Kirti Vardhan Singh is rushing to Kuwait to oversee assistance to Indians injured in the fire and to ensure early repatriation of mortal remains of those killed.

    “Deeply shocked by the news of the fire incident in Kuwait City. There are reportedly over 40 deaths and over 50 have been hospitalized. Our Ambassador has gone to the camp. We are awaiting further information,” External Affairs Minister S Jaishankar said in a post on X.

    “Deepest condolences to the families of those who tragically lost their lives. Wish early and full recovery to those who have been injured. Our Embassy will render the fullest assistance to all concerned in this regard,” he added.

    Indian Ambassador Adarsh Swaika visited the fire incident site and later hospitals where over 50 Indian workers injured in today's fire incident have been admitted.

    The Northlines is an independent source on the Web for news, facts and figures relating to Jammu, Kashmir and Ladakh and its neighbourhood.

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