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Major fire destroys Kishtwar village, 80 houses gutted

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img-20161016-wa0027 STATE TIMES NEWS
KISHTWAR: A major fire has completely destroyed Sukhnoi village in the Kishtwar District, gutting 80 out of a total 84 households, but no one was injured, officials said on Sunday.
“Out of 84 houses, 80 in the Sukhnoi village in the Warwan Block of the Kishtwar District were gutted in a fire that broke out late last night,” Deputy Commissioner (DC) Kishtwar, Ghulam Nabi Balwan, said.
The damaged structures include 80 houses with 115 registered families (in Govt record), 80 cow sheds, one middle school, two medical shops, two flour mills, three provision stores, two Anganwari center, one health sub-center, a mosque and a sarai. Soon after receiving the information, senior police and district administration officials rushed to the spot.
MoS Sunil Sharma alongwith Divisional Commissioner Jammu Dr. Pawan Kotwal, MLC Firdous Tak reached the effected village, after that they reviewed the arrangements with Deputy Commissioner Kishtwar Ghulam Nabi Balwan and SSP Kishtwar Sandeep Kumar Wazir.
The relief material provided by Red Cross Society is being dispatched in Chopper from Kishtwar helipad.
“The villagers had no option but to stay in the open last night as it is a remote village and tents will not help them due to snowfall in the area during the coming months,” the DC said.
He said that the government has already sent free ration for the villagers, who have decided to stay in rented accommodation during the winters.
“As the winters are fast approaching and it would be difficult for the people to reconstruct their houses or stay in the tents, they have decided to stay in rented accommodation during the winter, the government will pay the rent for them,” Balwan said.
He said that there was no loss of life or injury in the inferno that destroyed almost the entire village.
Meanwhile, Chief Minister, Mehbooba Mufti and Deputy Chief Minister, Dr. Nirmal Singh expressed shock and grief over the tragic fire incident.
The Chief Minister expressed sympathy towards the affected and instructed the divisional and district administration to provide immediate help and support to all those affected due the devastating blaze.
In his message, Deputy Chief Minister conveyed his sympathy with the affected families. He has also directed the district administration to provide immediate relief to the people.
Minister for Health and Medical Education, Bali Bhagat, Minister for Food, Civil Supplies and Consumer Affairs, Chowdhary Zulfkar Ali and Minister of State for Transport, Sunil Sharma also expressed deep shock and sorrow over the fire incident.
The ministers directed Deputy Commissioner to personally visit the spot to assess the situation. The DC was directed to take immediate measures for providing necessary relief and rehabilitation to the sufferers.
Zulfkar directed the authorities of Department of Food, Civil Supplies and Consumer Affairs to immediately provide free ration and other essentials to the victims.
Former Minister and National Conference MLC Sajjad Ahmed Kichloo also expressed shock and concern over colossal damage caused to residential houses. In a statement, Kichloo expressed solidarity with the affected families and sought preliminary relief to the sufferers till the process for compensation is initiated after survey, which he sought to be carried out on immediate basis. He also demanded enquiry into the cause of fire.
The former minister expressed hope that necessary assistance in terms free rations and other essentials to the affected families would be provided on priority basis. “Immediate rehabilitation of the fire victims is imperative in view of ensuing winter”, Kichloo said.

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