India market in Calcutta gutted in a fire

by Wadsam | March 22, 2012 5:53 am

[1]A massive fire has swept through one of the oldest markets in the eastern Indian city of Calcutta, destroying the majority of the shops.

No casualties have been reported in the blaze at the Hatibagan market, which broke out early on Thursday, police said.

Some people who were trapped inside the burning market have been rescued by the fire brigade, reports said.

Last December, some 90 people died in a blaze at a hospital in Calcutta.

The police said 30 fire engines fought the blaze at the market located in northern part of the city for over four hours before bringing it under control.

The fire broke out at around 2:30 am with the flames affecting shops selling meat, fish, fruits and ghee in the sprawling market, the fire brigade officials said.

The cause of the blaze is unknown and investigators are looking for clues at the site.

“This is a conspiracy. Somebody set this market on fire,” a shopowner told a TV channel.

Correspondents say Calcutta appears to be emerging as India’s fire capital.

In 2010, 43 people died in a fire at the historic St Stephen’s Court building on the city’s Park Street.

In 2008 more than 2,500 shops were destroyed in a huge fire at one of the city’s largest market.

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