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Tragic Kuwait Building Fire Claims Dozens of Indian Lives

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At least 40 Indians among the 49 people tragically killed in a devastating fire in Mangaf, Kuwait, have been confirmed by India‘s foreign ministry. The fire, which occurred in a residential building housing mostly workers, resulted in a significant loss of life.

The video circulating on social media depicted the intense flames engulfing the lower section of the building, with thick black smoke billowing from the upper floors. Among the deceased, a majority hailed from the southern Indian states of Kerala and Tamil Nadu, with approximately 50 Indian nationals sustaining injuries.

Other nationalities affected by the fire tragedy include Filipino and Nepali workers. Kuwait, heavily reliant on migrant labor, particularly in construction and domestic roles, is home to a large population of foreign workers, constituting two-thirds of its total population.

Reports from local media suggest that the building, accommodating 196 workers, may have been overcrowded. A police officer highlighted the substantial number of individuals present during the fire, emphasizing the challenges faced in rescuing residents from the engulfed building.

Kuwaiti Deputy Prime Minister Sheikh Fahad Yusuf al-Sabah blamed the tragedy on property owners’ greed and violations of building standards. He criticized the negligence of property owners, stating that such violations have dire consequences, leading to avoidable incidents like the recent fire.

Indian Prime Minister Narendra Modi expressed condolences to the victims and their families, acknowledging the tragedy in Kuwait City. He assured that India’s embassy is actively engaged in coordinating with local authorities to address the situation on the ground, offering necessary assistance.

Kirti Vardhan Singh, a junior minister from India, mentioned the ongoing DNA testing to identify the deceased victims. Plans are in place to repatriate the bodies as soon as they are identified, with an Indian Air Force plane on standby for the purpose.

Heartbreaking stories of the affected families have emerged, such as the family of Umaruddeen Shameer from Kollam, Kerala, and Stephin Sabu from Kottayam, Kerala, waiting for their loved ones whose lives were tragically cut short in the fire. The ordeal faced by Ashrafunnisa from Villupuram, Tamil Nadu, as she awaited news of her husband Mohammed Sharief, underlines the devastating impact of the Kuwait building fire.

Rachel Adams

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