KOLKATA: About 55 people were killed in a massive fire that broke out at the AMRI hospital in south Kolkata early Friday, West Bengal CM Mamata Banerjee said.
"Quick action will be taken against the hospital after proper inquiry," she added.
According to hospital sources, death toll may rise in the hospital fire incident in Kolkata. Nearly 160 patients were admitted in the Dhakuria building, where fire broke out in the wee hours.
Only 85 patients were rescued and removed to two other units of the same hospital located at Mukundapur and Saltlake. But the hospital authority could not confirm the condition of remaining 75 patients, they added.
According to police sources, the death toll have been ascertained at 54 in the blaze at AMRI Hospital in Dhakuria in south Kolkata.
Meanwhile, fire department lodged an FIR against AMRI hospital authorities. The fire brigade in its complaint said that the hospital authority did not have the adequate fire-preventive mechanism and emergency evacuation system in place.
Initial report hinted that most of the victims were admitted at orthopaedic ward and majority of them were immovable. Hundreds of relatives of the patients are waiting in front of the hospital. Till now, no official communication has been made by the hospital authority.
Locals and fire officials who started the rescue work alleged that most of the hospital staffs fled soon after fire broke out.
The report also confirmed that most of the patients are victim of suffocation as thick smoke covered the entire building.
In the wee hours smoke was first noticed billowing out from the basement of the hospital building. Smoke soon spread inside the hospital building which is centrally air conditioned. Fire brigade was informed but before they could reach flames engulfed the entire building as the basement was packed off inflammable articles.
Thick smoke covered the entire hospital causing suffocation of the patients. Local joined hand with police and fire brigade officials to rescue the patients.
Till now, the hospital authority admitted that bodies of 15 patients have been recovered but more feared trapped inside the fourth floor of the building. Fire fighters now managed to scale up in the floor and started working. State minister Firhad Hakim and Javed khan are at the spot. They also admitted that the toll may rise more.
Twenty-five fire engines are trying to combat the situation, while the fire that has been doused to a thick smoke is still billowing out of the multi-storeyed AMRI speciality hospital.
The fire broke out in the early hours at the basement where hospital chemicals and medical waste were stocked.
Fire service minister Javed Khan said that 80 per cent of the patients have been removed to other facilities.