The Lok Sabha on Friday mourned the deaths in a hospital fire in South Kolkata.

"I am sure the House would join me in empathising in this hour of grief with the members of the families, who became victims of this unfortunate incident," Lok Sabha Speaker Meira Kumar said in the House.

Members stood in silence for a short while as a mark of respect to the memory of the departed. At least 70 patients suffocated to death when a massive fire broke in the seven-storey private AMRI Hospital at Dhakuria in south Kolkata early on Friday morning.

Prime Minister Manmohan Singh has also expressed shock and anguish over the loss of life in the tragedy and conveyed his condolences to the bereaved families of those, who lost their lives in the fire. He announced an ex-gratia of Rs 2 lakh each to the families of those killed and Rs 50,000 each of those grievously injured.

The Union Health and Family Welfare Minister Ghulam Nabi Azad has also expressed his heartfelt condolence at the death of victims in the tragic fire at AMRI Hospital, the superspeciality private hospital in Kolkata.

In a letter written to the Chief Minister Mamta Banerjee, Mr. Azad offered all possible help and assistance from the Centre. Union Health Secretary, Mr. P.K. Pradhan, also spoke to the Chief Secretary and Health Secretary of West Bengal twice during the course of the day offering any services that might be required from Centre.