Amid the tragic loss of 43 lives in the fire at Delhi's Anaj Mandi on Sunday, visuals from the factory when the fire first started have been accessed. Visuals show major sparking occurring on the electrical switches installed on the side of the building during the early hours on Sunday morning. Currently, the NDRF has doused the fire and search operation is underway.
An eye-witness from the site named Raunak Khan said that he heard screaming and tried to rescue the victim and bring them to the roof. He stated they initially tried to douse the fire by pouring water over it. Moreover, police immediately rushed to the spot and manually rescued the victims - most of them had lost consciousness due to suffocation.
"It was about 3:30 AM when we heard people screaming. We reached on the roof and tried to help those who were stuck in. We poured water on the fire to douse it. One of the victims was shouting for help leaning outside a window, he could not survive the fire. While we tried rescuing from the backside of the building, the front side of the building had a lot of smoke," he said.
Earlier in the day, Delhi Police has filed an FIR on the owners and other renters who have occupied the factory premises. Delhi CP has transferred the case to the Crime branch. Forensic investigation is currently underway. Delhi Deputy Commissioner of Police Monika Bharadwaj has confirmed that the main owner of the factory - Rehan is absconding. NDRF team too is currently on-site to help with rescue operations.
Briefing the media on the situation, Delhi police said, "There were a lot of plastic materials which were hindering our rescue efforts. Due to the rising smoke from these plastics, most of the deaths have occurred due to asphyxiation (suffocation). When the fire department and Delhi police tried to rescue them, two fire officers and 2 police officers have been hurt in the operation due to the smoke."
Delhi Police stated that a major fire broke out at a fire in Anaj Mandi in Delhi on early Sunday morning - around 5:20 AM, killing almost 43 people. While over 60 people have been rescued, police sources state that most victims have lost consciousness due to rising smog. The factory mainly produced plastic items housed several labourers and their families - leading to higher burn injuries, state police. While over 30 fire tenders have been rushed to the spot, the search operation is underway. All victims who have been rescued by fire personnel (most manually) have been shifted to LNJP and Lady Hardinge Hospitals. Initial probe points towards short circuit as the cause of the fire, report sources.