The absconding owner of a building in outer Delhi’s Mundka, where a massive fire broke out leaving 27 people dead, has been arrested two days after the incident, police said.
Twenty-seven people, including 21 women, have died in the blaze that started on the first floor of the four-storey building on Friday.
"We have arrested the absconding building owner Manish Lakra after conducting raids in Delhi and Haryana" said Sameer Sharma, Deputy Commissioner of Police (Outer).
Lakhra is a resident of Mundka village, he said.
Nineteen people are still missing and there was little hope of finding survivors.
Earlier, police said a motivational programme was going on the second floor of the building in Mundka when a massive fire broke out and a large number of people had gathered to attend the event,
Fire officials said maximum number of charred bodies were recovered from the second floor of the building.
According to the FIR registered in connection with the case, “On Friday, around 4 pm, a motivational programme was organised for all employees and they were assembled at the second floor of the building.”
The FIR said police received information at 4.45 pm regarding the fire and 100 to 150 people were trapped inside.
Police reached the spot and found that a fire broke out in premises number 193, main Rohtak road, opposite pillar number 544, Mundka village, and some people escaped from the second floor of the building after breaking the glasses, the FIR stated.
There was a basement and four floors in the building. The fourth floor was a residential flat. The fire tenders were rushed to the spot and started dousing the blaze, it said.
During inquiry, it was found that the building was owned by Manish Lakra, who lives on the fourth floor of the building, it said.
There were shops on the ground floor of the building. A company called Cofe Impex Pvt Ltd was running on the first, second and third floors of the building. The owners of the company were Harish Goyal and Varun Goyal, it stated.
The company had around 100 employees, including about 50 women, who used to work from 10 am to 7 pm, it said.
When the fire broke out, many came out of the building after breaking the front glasses, but some of them trapped inside after the fire spread in the area. There was heavy smoke and fire inside the building and it has only one exit gate, the FIR said.
When the fire brought under control, police and fire staff entered the building and shifted the bodies to the hospital from the second floor, it said.
The building has only one entry and exit gate, police said.
Local inquiry revealed that the owners of the building are Sushila Lakra, her son Manish Lakra and his wife Sunita Lakra. While Harish and Varun took the property on rent for the business, police said.
According to DCP Sameer Sharma, an FIR has been registered against the owners of the CCTV camera packaging unit under Sections 304 (punishment for culpable homicide not amounting to murder), 308 (attempt to commit culpable homicide), 120 (concealing design to commit offence punishable with imprisonment) and 34 (common intention) of the Indian Penal Code.
(With PTI inputs)