At least seven persons were killed and 23 others injured in a major fire that broke out on the 18th floor of a residential building in the Tardeo area of central Mumbai around 7:30 am on Saturday.
"It is a ground plus 20-storey building. The fire broke out on its 18th floor. On being alerted, the fire brigade personnel and police rushed the spot. Thirteen fire engines, seven water jetties, among others, are involved in the firefighting operation," an official said, adding that it was tagged as a level-3 (major) fire.
Some injured persons were taken to the nearby Bhatia Hospital. "Doctors at the hospital said that 12 of the injured persons have been admitted to the general ward, while three others are being treated in the intensive care unit (ICU) and their condition is critical".
Mumbai Mayor Kishori Pednekar informed that six old-age people, who needed oxygen support had been shifted to the hospital. "Fire flame is under control but smoke is huge," she added.
Footage from the scene showed a massive plume of smoke filling the sky, with flames coming out from the 18th floor of the building.
Prime Minister Narendra Modi has announced an ex-gratia of Rs. 2 lakh each for the kin of those killed in the incident, and of Rs. 50,000 each for those injured.
A fire official said that the cause of the fire is still being investigated. “The fire broke out in house number 1904, and the smoke spread to the entire building. A fire system was in place but it was not working. So we had to carry hose from downstairs. Electrical ducts and electrical cables had completely melted," he added.