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Students jump from fourth story after fire erupts in Kota hostel, Fire Department cracks down

Author : IANS

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Jaipur, April 14 (IANS) At least 70 students were trapped in a five-storey hostel in Rajasthan's Kota after a fire broke out on Sunday morning and many of them jumped from the fourth floor or fled to the terrace to escape, officials said, adding that there were no fatalities.

The hostel and two others have been sealed, as all three lacked fire NOC, said officials.

The fire broke out due to a short-circuit in the transformer when most of the students were sleeping.

Chief Fire Officer Rakesh Vyas said: "Had there been a little more delay, loss of life could not have been ruled out."

The fire brigade and officials rushed to the hostel after receiving information and found that the hostel did not have a fire NOC.

A video of the entire incident is going viral where students are seen jumping from the fourth storey while people standing on the road were asking them to wait for the fire brigade.

Madhya Pradesh resident Arpit Pandey, who is preparing for NEET, suffered a fracture in his leg in the incident.

Vipin, a resident of Chhattisgarh and also preparing for NEET, said: "I woke up in the morning listening to the uproar around. I was feeling suffocated. My room is on the second floor. As the fire brigade came, I came down via a ladder." However, some of his hair got singed and he was provided first aid.

Chief Fire Officer Vyas said: "No fire NOC was taken while operating this hostel. There are no arrangements for fire prevention in the hostel. This hostel was being operated illegally. The biggest negligence was that a small transformer was installed inside on the ground floor. This is completely against the rules. There was a short circuit in this transformer and a fire broke out. Also, there was no emergency exit. and hence students got trapped inside."

The hostel has been sealed. Notice was given twice to this hostel for not having a fire NOC. But, the hostel operator did not pay attention.

Meanwhile, two more hostels were hurriedly checked and sealed. A case was filed by the Fire Department against these hostels and further investigations are under progress.

--IANS

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