Kuwait fire: Some charred beyond recognition, Air Force plane ready to bring bodies back, says MoS Kirti Vardhan Singh | India News – Times of India

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NEW DELHI: Minister of State for External Affairs Kirti Vardhan Singh, who is on his way to Kuwait after a building fire killed over 40 Indians on Wednesday, said that “some of the bodies have been charred beyond recognition and DNA test is underway to identify the victims“. Singh also added that an Air Force plane is ready to bring the bodies back.
Speaking to the reporters at Delhi airport before the departure, Singh told ANI: “We had a meeting last evening with the PM…The situation will be cleared the moment we reach there… The situation is that the victims are mostly burn victims and some of the bodies have been charred beyond recognition. A DNA test is underway to identify the victims. An Air Force plane is on the ready. As soon as the bodies are identified, the kin will be informed and our airforce plane will bring the bodies back.”
On the causality figure the minister said, “The latest figures that we had last night, the casualty figures are around 48-49 out of this 42 or 43 are believed to be Indians.”
Prime Minister Narendra Modi had directed Singh to travel to Kuwait on an urgent basis to oversee assistance to the Indians injured in the fire. Singh will also ensure early repatriation of the mortal remains of those killed as several families still wait to confirm the identities.
“The fire mishap in Kuwait City is saddening. My thoughts are with all those who have lost their near and dear ones,” PM Modi posted on X on Wednesday.
“I pray that the injured recover at the earliest. The Indian Embassy in Kuwait is closely monitoring the situation and working with the authorities there to assist the affected,” he added.
PM Modi announced an ex-gratia relief of Rs 2 lakh to each of the families of the deceased.
Meanwhile, an MEA statement said the injured were admitted to five government hospitals in Kuwait and were receiving proper medical care.
The Embassy of India in Kuwait is in constant communication with local authorities and a dedicated helpline, +965-65505246 (available via WhatsApp and regular calls) has been established to assist family members seeking information and support. The helpline will be regularly updated with the latest information.
The fire that killed over 50 people
A devastating fire engulfed a structure housing foreign laborers in Kuwait in the early hours of Wednesday, resulting in the loss of at least 40 Indian citizens’ lives and leaving more than 50 injured. The remaining casualties included Pakistani, Filipino, Egyptian, and Nepali nationals.
Authorities suspect the fire was caused by violations of safety regulations.
Sheikh Fahad Al-Yousuf Al-Sabah, the interior minister, verified the death toll during his visit to the location and commanded the arrest of the building’s proprietor, as reported by local news outlets.
“We will address the issue of labor overcrowding,” he said. “I’m now going to see what violations were committed here and I will deal with the owner of the property.”
The head of the firefighters’ accident investigation department, Col Sayed Hassan al-Mousawi, stated that there were numerous casualties and that the ultimate death count might be greater than initially reported.
Most victims died in sleep
The fire broke out in the Mangaf area of Kuwait’s southern Ahmadi Governorate in a six-storey building housing nearly 200 workers from the same company. Kuwaiti officials stated that the majority of the fatalities were caused by smoke inhalation while the occupants were asleep. They also mentioned that a substantial number of residents were evacuated from the premises.
The blaze originated in a kitchen on the ground floor of the building. Initial investigations indicate that a short circuit may have been the cause of the fire, which rapidly spread to the upper floors. Some of the victims lost their lives after jumping from the building in an attempt to escape the flames, while others perished due to severe burns or smoke inhalation.
According to officials in Kuwait, most deaths were caused by smoke inhalation while the victims were sleeping. A significant number of occupants were also evacuated.
(With agency inputs)



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