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Delhi's Anaj Mandi area fire: Search for missing Bihar teenager ends in morgue

Acquaintances and relatives of the teenager, hailing from Bihar's Samastipur, had been frantically searching for him since Sunday morning, saying he was present inside the ill-fated building.

Published: 09th December 2019 04:06 PM  |   Last Updated: 09th December 2019 04:42 PM   |  A+A-

Police officers cordon off the site of a fire as onlookers stand at Rani Jhansi Road in New Delhi Sunday morning Dec. 8 2019. (Photo | Parveen Negi/EPS)

Police officers cordon off the site of a fire as onlookers stand at Rani Jhansi Road in New Delhi Sunday morning Dec. 8 2019. (Photo | Parveen Negi/EPS)

By PTI

NEW DELHI: For the family and friends of 14-year-old Mohammed Sehmat, the efforts to find him after the massive blaze in Delhi's Anaj Mandi area ended at a morgue in the city on Monday.

Acquaintances and relatives of the teenager, hailing from Bihar's Samastipur, had been frantically searching for him since Sunday morning, saying he was present inside the ill-fated building when the fire broke out.

"We looked for him everywhere, from hospital to hospital the entire day yesterday but in vain," said Mohammed Arman, who hails from the same village as Sehmat and works at a furniture factory in Mayapuri here.

"This afternoon, I and another person who knew Sehmat, as he was from our village only, we identified his body in the morgue at LNJP Hospital," he said.

As many as 34 victims were declared brought dead at the hospital in central Delhi while 15 survivors reached there in injured condition.

Most of the victims were labourers, doctors said.

On the other hand, a Delhi police team reached the building in north Delhi's Anaj Mandi area on Monday to reconstruct the crime scene and document the evidence using 3D laser scan technology, officials said.

ALSO READ | Delhi blaze: Survivors, victims’ kin recount horrors

This is the second time, after the blaze at Arpit Palace hotel in Karol Bagh in Feb this year, that the police is using the technology to probe a fire incident.

Chaotic scenes prevailed at Maulana Azad Medical College, where the autopsy of the victims was done, as people said they were confused about how to transport the bodies of their relatives back home.

Zakir Hussain from Bihar's Madhubanj area lost his brother, Shakir, in the massive fire on Sunday.

He said the Bihar government has made arrangements for the relatives to carry the bodies back home on trains but there was no clarity on the procedure.

He said Delhi minister Imran Hussain had said on Sunday that the Delhi government will provide individual ambulances to them to take the bodies home.

Family members and relatives also had a heated exchange with hospital authorities on the issue.

They say it is difficult for them to transport the bodies in trains.

"We are not happy about travelling by train. Train would stop at Samastipur station and our village Barijana is another 70 km from there," said Mohammad Shamshir from Begusarai, Bihar.

Shamshir's neighbour Naveen Kumar, 19, died in the fire and he is here to collect his body.

He said Kumar hails from a very poor family.

"His father is a taxi driver in Kolkata and mother works in fields," Shamshir added.

Many of the 43 people dead in the fire on Sunday morning were migrant workers from Bihar and Uttar Pradesh.

They were trapped in the building as they were asleep when the fire began.

The railways said it will carry the bodies of the Bihar residents dead in the fire to their home state.

It officials said the bodies will be carried in the seating-cum-luggage rake (SLR coach) onboard the Swatantrata Senani Express.

The officials said the resident commissioner of Bihar in Delhi approached Railway Minister Piyush Goyal for help to send the bodies home and the coach was arranged.



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