Major fire breaks out in Odisha’s Puri shopping complex, over 100 people rescued
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People gather near the shopping complex where a fire broke out at Grand Road, in Puri, Wednesday, March 8, 2023.
| Photo Credit: PTI

A major fire broke out at a shopping complex in Odisha’s Puri on Wednesday night, police said.

The blaze was first spotted at a garments shop on the first floor of Laxmi Market Complex in Marichikot Chhak on Grand Road around 9 p.m., they said.

Some of the 40 shops at the shopping complex were gutted in the inferno, they said, adding that five fire tenders were working to douse the blaze.

Three people, who were stuck on the roof of the building, were rescued in an unconscious state by the firefighters and rushed to the district hospital, police said.

The building, which is located close to the centuries-old Jagannath temple, also houses a hotel on one of its floors. Around 106 tourists from Nashik in Maharashtra were safely rescued from the hotel.

Deputy fire officer Pradeep Kumar Rout said 90% of the fire was brought under control by 10.30 p.m.

The building in the busy neighbourhood also houses a bank on one of its floors.

“We are still unable to ascertain how the fire started,” said Puri Sub-Collector Bhavataran Sahu.

Police said they were suspecting an electrical short-circuit may have started the fire.

Puri MLA Jayant Sarangi of the BJP said the district administration has failed in ensuring fire safety systems at the hotels and other establishments in the seaside town.

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