17 killed as fire hits hotel in New Delhi (PHOTOS, VIDEOS)

17 killed as fire hits hotel in New Delhi (PHOTOS, VIDEOS)

The incident was reported around 4:35 am and 22 fire tenders were rushed to the spot. While 13 bodies were shifted to Ram Manohar Lohia (RML) hospital, the remaining four were taken to Lady Hardinge Medical College and BLK Hospital.

The fire-fighting operation carried by more than 100 personnel of Delhi's fire department lasted around four hours.

Shrestha said that he called the hotel manager, also a Nepali national, for help.

Jain blamed the Municipal Corporation of Delhi for the violation and said a magisterial inquiry has been ordered.

Fire officials are investigating the blaze that began at the Arpit Palace Hotel in New Delhi, the Times of India reported. Two hotel staff members had jumped from the fourth floor of the hotel in an attempt to save themselves.

Meanwhile, the vice-president of the Delhi Hotel Association Balan Mani told ANI that all fire norms were maintained in the hotel.

Hotel Arpit Palace is located in Karol Bagh, an area popular with tourists for its budget hotels and shopping.

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It is estimated around 120 people were inside the hotel - built around 25 years ago - when the fire started.

But the city is rapidly growing - with more than 18 million people now crowded into the Indian capital - and building violations are nearly impossible to stop.

Accidental fires are common across India because of poor safety standards and lax enforcement of regulations.

Many commercial establishments in the city lack emergency exits or fire fighting equipment. After visiting the spot, Delhi Chief Minister Arvind Kejriwal announced a compensation of Rs 5 lakh to the next of kin of the victims of the fire.

Prime Minister Narendra Modi condoled the deaths.

"People have to come out of the room and take the staircase but the staircase itself was on fire, so how they will go out?"

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