MP fire: 3 killed, 17 hurt, 2 dozen villages razed

Hoshangabad (Madhya Pradesh): Three people were killed and 17 others injured in a wildfire that also destroyed crop in around 700 hectares, in the Hoshangabad district of Madhya Pradesh, said an official here on Saturday.

“Three people of the Panjra village were charred to death and 17 others sustained injuries. They are being treated in hospital,” Hoshangabad Collector Shailendra Singh told IANS. The crop in around 700 hectares was also destroyed in the fire, he added.

According to the Collector, a small crop caught fire on Friday night. But it spread fast due to strong wind and engulfed around two dozen villages. The fire could only be doused on Saturday after an overnight struggle of around 12 hours by fire fighters, Singh said.

Congress leader and former Union Minister Suresh Pachouri visited the fire-affected areas on Saturday and assured people of every possible assistance. “The government has a provision to give Rs 4 lakh each to families of deceased and free treatment to the injured,” Pachouri said.

Former Chief Minister Shivraj Singh Chauhan also visited the area to met victims. “I will demand a quick aid from the Chief Minister,” he said.