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Only Rohingya camp in National Capital reduced to ashes

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Only Rohingya camp in National Capital reduced to ashes Rohingya Camp

Rohingya Camp Residents say the fire broke out around 3 am, and the fire department received a call at 3:38 am - Amarjeet Singh, DNA

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Written By

Rohan Agarwal

Updated: Apr 16, 2018, 06:00 AM IST

A major fire broke out at the only Rohingya camp in the national Capital in South-East Delhi's Kanc han Kunj area in the wee hours of Sunday. As many as 46 shanties were gutted in the fire affecting the lives of over 200 people who resided there. No casualty was reported, however, one of the residents sustained burn injuries.

According to the locals, the fire broke out around 3 am and gutted 46 shanties within half an hour. The residents tried to douse the fire but it spread fast.

"The fire department received a call at 3:38 am regarding the fire at JJ colony in Madanpur Khadar area. The fire was doused by around 6:50 am. Eleven fire tenders were rushed to the spot," a fire official said.

Most of the houses were built of plywoods, card-boards and plastic, which are highly combustible and hence the fire spread wild.

"We were told to vacate our houses by the police patrolling team, and within seconds of leaving the house the only shelter on our head was engulfed in the flames," said Mohammad Atif, a resident at the camp.

So me locals said that the fire was not an accident but an attempt to damage the lives of the Rohingya refugees. They lost all their documents and identity cards. Prima facie it appears that the fire was caused by a short circuit. The school uniforms of the children were also burnt to ashes and with this, their dream to go to school also shattered.

"The only source of electricity for the residents were the electric cables in the area. The residents were illegally pulling out electricity from the wires. The wires being used were not of fine quality and weak. They were unable to pull the load of the amount of electricity they were consuming and hence one of these snapped," said a police officer.

The police team found that the residents had begun to use coolers in the houses which increased the load on the light-duty wire which could not carry the heavy current and ultimately resulted in a short circuit. "It was the first time on Saturday that the residents had started using coolers in their houses, but the wires used to carry the current could not withstand the heavy stand and could have possibly led to the fire," said the officer.

UNDER NGO CARE

  • The camp was allocated to Rohingya refugees by a Delhi- based NGO, Zakat Foundation and was regularly checked by them, however, locals claimed that they had expressed their concern of a possible fire to the representatives of the foundation in the past but they did not pay any heed to their fear and advised to keep their residences as make-shift houses only.

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