28 shops, house gutted in fire

A view of property damaged in fire at Khari in district Ramban. -Excelsior/Parvaiz
A view of property damaged in fire at Khari in district Ramban. -Excelsior/Parvaiz

People protest, demand fire station

Excelsior Correspondent

RAMBAN, Sept 19: At least 28 shops and a house were gutted in a fire in main market Khari.
As per police sources, the fire erupted in the main market in Khari at around 10.45 pm on Friday.
Fire and Emergency services personnel put out the blaze after hectic efforts of over one-and-a-half-hour. Army personnel from the nearby camp, police cops and local residents also joined the fire fighting operation.

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The fire consumed 28 shops and a residential house, destroying property worth crores of rupees. The final report about the loss is being prepared.
The fire broke out in a shop apparently due to a short circuit and within no time engulfed other shops in the market.
Meanwhile, a large group of people assembled at the scene today morning and staged a demonstration against the administration for its alleged failure to provide a fire station in the Tehsil.
“It is our long pending demand to have a fire and emergency station in our Tehsil. The fire tenders were rushed from Banihal and it took them nearly half-an-hour to reach the spot, causing a little delay in the fire fighting operation”, one of the protesters said.
Deputy Commissioner Ramban, SDM Ramsoo along with other officials rushed to the spot and assured that their demand would be brought to the notice of appropriate quarters for redressal.
Those, who were affected due to fire were, Mushtaq Ahmed, Shakeel Ahmed, Sharif Din, Nasar Ahmed, Bashir Ahmed, Zubair Ahmed, Fayaz Ahmed, Tanveer Ahmed, Shabir Ahmed, Shaker Ahmed, Jalal-ud-Din Makdomi, Abdul Qayoom Malik, Jalal Din, Khursheed Ahmed, Kamal Nath, Ashok Kumar, Mohammad Iqbal, Mohammad Ramzan, Nazir Ahmed, Ghulam Qadir and Saleema Begum.
To ascertain the exact cause of fire, Banihal Police has started investigation.
However, J&K National Conference leader and District President Ramban Sajjad Shaheen has expressed grief over the damage to property in a fire incident and urged the district administration to carry out relief and rehabilitation measures for the victims.