Fire near PC office in Delhi creates panic

A minor fire broke out at the Ministry of Home Affairs and the Ministry of Personnel’s office complex at North Block on Sunday afternoon. It caused panic in the vicinity as it came three days after a similar fire gutted several floors of the Maharashtra Mantralaya in Mumbai.

The incident was reported from a conference hall adjoining the first-floor offices of Union Home Minister P Chidambaram, Union Minister of State for Home Mullappally Ramachandran and Union Minister of State for Personnel V Narayanaswamy in the building near Rashtrapati Bhavan and the Parliament House.

They were not present in the building when the fire broke out around 2:20 pm on Sunday.

“Thick plumes of smoke billowed out of a window after which 10 fire tenders were rushed to the spot. The fire was, however, not allowed to get out of control as in Mumbai and was doused within half-an-hour,” said Delhi Fire Service chief A K Sharma.

No casualty was reported as mainly Central Reserve Police Force security personnel were inside the building due to the non-working day.

Chidambaram and Home Secretary R K Singh, along with senior officials of the Home Ministry, Delhi Police and Delhi Fire Service, visited the spot. 

Chidambaram also had a brief chat with fire department officials and was seen taking note of the damage caused by the blaze.

Talking to the media, R K Singh said that a short-circuit in an air-conditioner was suspected to be the reason behind the blaze. “It was a minor fire as only a small area was affected,” Singh said.

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