Eighteen students of a coaching centre died when they jumped off a building on fire in Surat on Friday. At least 10 students were trapped by the blaze on the third and fourth floors of the building and were forced to jump in a desperate attempt to escape the flames. Most of the students are said to be between the ages of 14 and 17.
"The students lost their life both because of the fire and jumping out of the building", Deepak Sapthaley, a local fire official, told AFP.
Visuals on TV channels showed students jumping off the third and fourth floors of the building.More news: Women's performance at work is affected by room temperature
Prime Minister Narendra Modi, who comes from Gujarat and was formerly chief minister of the state, experessed his condolence on Twittersaid on Twitter he was thinking of the bereaved families.
As per reports, the fire broke out at the third and fourth floor Takshila Commercial Complex.
Gujarat Chief Minister Vijay Rupani ordered an investigation into the tragedy and asked Mukesh Puri, Principal Secretary, Urban Development, to rush to Surat.More news: USA might blacklist China's Hikvision over Uighur crackdown
The authorities of the Surat Municipal Corporation were inquiring whether the building had taken the statutory permission, including regarding fire safety. Many have been rescued and sent to a hospital.
At least 19 fire tenders and two hydraulic platforms were pressed into service to douse the fire, said an official.
He expressed grief over the incident and declared a financial assistance of Rs 4 lakh each to the family members of the deceased.More news: Google Duplex AI Still Needs a Lot of Help From Humans
"May the injured recover quickly", he said, adding he had instructed authorities to help those affected.