Mother, daughter killed as fire engulfs apartment in Bengaluru

The fire that broke out at an apartment in Bengaluru on Tuesday evening.

The fire that broke out at an apartment in Bengaluru on Tuesday evening. | Photo Credit: By special arrangement

In a horrific incident, a fire broke out at a flat in an apartment complex in Devarachikkanahalli near Bannerghatta Road on Tuesday evening, leaving an aged mother and her daughter dead.

The deceased have been identified as Bhagyarekha, 59, and her mother Lakshmidevi, 82. Bhagyarekha’s husband Bhimsen Rao, 62, sustained minor injuries while trying to rescue them, and is being treated at a private hospital.

Visuals of a woman who was ablaze, said to be Bhagyarekha, screaming for help from the balcony that was barricaded, have sent shockwaves through the city.

“We came running out after we heard an explosion-like sound to find fire billowing out of a second floor flat. A woman, who was on fire, was screaming for help from the balcony. The balcony was grilled and hence nobody could intervene and save her,” Naveen Reddy, an eye-witness and a resident of a neighbouring apartment, said.

“We heard an explosion around 4.15 p.m., when I was in an online meeting. We immediately rushed out, and saw the flat on fire. We got everyone evacuated from the apartment,” one of the residents of the apartment told mediapersons.

The cause of the fire was not immediately ascertained. Though initially it was suspected to be a cylinder blast, it was later ruled out.

Just back from USA

Bhagyarekha lived with her husband and mother in flat 210, next door to her daughter, who lived in flat 211. Bhagyarekha and Bhimsen Rao had been to the United States of America visiting their other daughter six months ago, and returned home only on Monday night.

Through the six months, flat 210 was locked, while Lakshmidevi lived with her granddaughter next door, said Bommanahalli MLA, Satish Reddy, who visited the spot and spoke to the family members.

The couple slept at their daughter’s house on Monday night, and rested most of Tuesday, recovering from jetlag. On Tuesday afternoon, Bhagyarekha and her mother Lakshmidevi went to their flat to clean and reoccupy it, while Mr. Rao was sleeping in his daughter’s house when the incident happened.

“Bhagyarekha called her daughter saying there was a fire. As she and Mr. Rao rushed to save them next door with a fire extinguisher, fire had engulfed the flat and they couldn’t go in,” Mr. Reddy said. Mr. Rao suffered minor burns on his forehead, and his hair got burnt a bit.

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Printable version | Feb 13, 2022 1:28:25 pm |