Fifty houses at Malana reduced to ashes

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Shimla, Jan 5 (UNI) As many as 50 houses were gutted in a major fire in interior Malana village of Kullu District today early morning.

Kullu district SP G D Bhargava said that barring few fire injuries received by the victims, till now no loss of life had been reported in the incident.

''Though the village falls within an extreme interior location and is not easily approachable, however to take the stock of the situation we have sent a police party and the exact reasons for the fire could be figured out as the police party returns'' Mr Bhargava said.

''As during the winters most of the houses in the region remain packed with the fire wood and cattle fodder, the fire suspected to have sparked from the live stub, that eventually might have led the smouldering amber to flare up to greater extent,'' the SP said.

Kullu district Deputy Commissioner Abhishek Jain said that more than 300 people including the police and other officials were engaged in fire fighting, but the scarcity of water and the extreme interior location of the village was biggest obstruction in controlling the fire.

As without the fire tenders, the administration was forced to adopt local fire fighting means, which did not helped in controlling the devastating fire, otherwise the loss could have far less, Mr Jain added.

'' Yet the fire has to be controlled and as per the latest information it is still flaring up. Administration has already released primary relief to the fire victims,'' he said.

UNI XC AS PS JS1443

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