13 killed in Ghaziabad factory fire

Ghaziabad, Nov 11 (IANS) At least 13 persons were killed in a fire that broke out at a factory in a residential area of Sahibabad here on Friday, police said.

The incident occurred at a leather jacket manufacturing factory in Shaheed Nagar locality on GT Road.

Police said factory owner Rizwan and his brother Nazakat Ali ran a manufacturing unit for leather jackets in a rented residential house of building owner Babu Khan. Khan had rented his house for manufacturing purpose. All are absconding.

Around 5.30 a.m. on Friday, the fire broke out inside the closed workplace situated in the narrow lane of the densely populated residential locality. At that time, 20 workers were present in the factory.

The workers tried to escape but the narrow passage hindered them. Two of them managed to escape but 18 others could not.

Of the 18, thirteen died and five others were admitted to the hospital. The condition of three injured is said to be critical.

“We managed to control the fire after 2-3 hours. The fire was due to an electrical short circuit,” said Chief Fire Officer Ashfaque Hussain.

“An investigation has been initiated after registering a criminal case against two brothers Rizwan and Nazakat Ali. The building owner and the two (factory) owners are absconding. Attempts are being made to arrest them,” said Salman Taj Patil, SP City Ghaziabad.