It was on the third floor of the building where fire broke out
On most days, 70 children from the age of five to 10 attend a madrasa — Arabia Zia Ul Quran — on the third floor of a building in Hosaguddadahalli, a residential locality in Vinayaka Nagar, off Mysuru Road.
Fortunately, when a fire broke out on Friday, on the ground floor of the building, the madrasa was closed. “It would have been a disaster if the children were in the madrasa as the building is a fire trap. There was only one point for entry/exit,” said M.N. Anucheth, DCP West.
According to a witnesses, the fire started around 12.30 p.m. In a few minutes, residents saw women and children on the terrace crying for help. Neighbours and emergency personnel helped them jump to the adjacent building even as the fire spread to the lower floors.
“We reached the spot in 30 minutes. Ten fire tenders were pressed into service. The situation was brought under control by 5.30 p.m,” said an official from the Karnataka State Fire and Emergency Services Department. “We suspect an electric short circuit, but we also found LPG cylinders at the site.”
The building is owned by Ibrahim Kallemullah, who lives with his family in a duplex on the second floor and runs a foam-based chair-making unit on the ground floor. The police have booked a case against him based on a complaint by Muhammed Athaulla, brother of moulvi Abdul Hafiz who lost his life.
Kallemullah and three others have got themselves admitted to a hospital.
Fire tenders found it difficult to reach the building, as the approach lanes are narrow. Besides, a large number of people had gathered around the building to help those trapped inside.
To prevent further damage, fire-fighters removed cylinders from homes in the neighbourhood.
“The building is new. It was constructed two years ago,” said Mohammed Nawaz, a neighbour.