Fire breaks out at a complex in Secunderabad in Hyderabad
The six people were found in an unconscious condition by firemen on Thursday in an office room on the fifth floor which was completely filled with smoke, in the building and were rushed to a state-run hospital, they said.
All the six were declared brought dead by doctors at the hospital.
Telangana chief minister K Chandrasekhar Rao, expressed grief over the deaths and announced an ex-gratia of Rs 5 lakh to the kin of the each deceased.
Telangana State Disaster Response and Fire Services Director General Y Nagi Reddy, who inspected the spot told reporters on Friday that fire broke out in the building at 19.20pm on Thursday and a fire call was received by Fire Control Room at 19.31pm following which fire tenders rushed to the area.
Fire and Rescue personnel said the door leading to the external staircase in the building, that houses several private offices, garments and electronic shops, was found locked with unused articles dumped there and fire fighters broke it for rescue and fire fighting.
The building was 32 meters tall, with cellar plus ground and eight upper floors.
Rescue teams with the help of specialised ladder rescued inmates from the office and teams scoured all the floors for evacuation of those trapped.
According to officials, initially, five people were rescued from the fifth floor and later five more from the terrace of the building and two more persons from the fourth floor.
The firemen found six people in an unconscious state in a room of one of the offices and brought them down, but they died of asphyxiation.
The deceased were aged between 22 and 23 and belonged to Warangal, Mahabubabad and Khammam districts of Telangana.
They were employed in an e-commerce firm, marketing company which had offices in the complex, they said.
Major damage was reported in the fifth floor of the building while few offices located on the seventh floor were also damaged.
On the cause of the fire, the officials said they suspected electric short-circuit to have triggered the blaze, adding that it spread through the duct and caused severe damage in fifth floor.
As many as 12 fire tenders were rushed to the spot to extinguish the blaze.
The fire was brought under control after midnight on Thursday, another official supervising rescue operation said.
The building owners were prosecuted in 2013 for violation of fire prevention and fire safety measures, officials pointed out.
During the fire fighting operation, it was found that the available fire fighting equipment including the fire extinguishers that were expired were not in working condition.
Jawaharlal Nehru Technological University (JNTU) was requested to examine the structural stability of the building and submit a report even as the building was temporarily closed for further operations, a release from Greater Hyderabad Municipal Corporation said.
A case was registered by police in connection with the fire accident
(With PTI inputs)