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Mumbai fire: Death toll rises to nine in blaze at Covid hospital in Bhandup, 76 patients rescued

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Mumbai, Mar 26: Two COVID-19 patients died and 70 others were evacuated after a fire broke out at a hospital located in a Mumbai mall, a police official said on Friday. More than 20 fire brigade vehicles arrived on the spot to douse the flames as soon as the news of the fire is received.

The fire broke out at the Dreams Mall Sunrise Hospital in Bhandup area shortly after midnight, the official said.

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The hospital is situated on the third floor of the five-storeyed mall building and many patients including those being treated for COVID-19 were at the hospital when the fire broke out, the official said.

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Speaking about the incident, Mumbai Mayor Kishori Pednekar, who visited the site expressed surprise that a hospital was operating inside the mall. She said, "This is the first time I have seen a hospital in a mall. This is a very serious situation. Seven patients were on ventilators. 70 patients have been taken to another hospital. There will be an investigation to ascertain the cause of the fire."

The police official said two patients had died in the blaze, but a BMC control room official said there was confirmation of only one fatality so far.The cause of the ''level four'' fire (serious emergency call in fire brigade parlance) has not been ascertained yet, the control room sources said.

Around 20 fire engines, 15 water tankers and ambulances were rushed to the spot. Fire fighting operation is underway, the official said.

Patients were evacuated by the fire brigade and shifted to another hospital, the official said, adding fire personnel are checking if any patient is still stuck in the hospital.

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The incident comes amid an upsurge in coronavirus cases in Mumbai. On Thursday, the city logged 5,504 new infections, the highest daily count since the pandemic began.

There were reports that two patients had died but a BMC control room official said there was confirmation of only one fatality so far.

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