Mrunal Manmay Dash

The office of Paralakhemundi Municipality under Gajapati district saw a huge fire on Sunday night which reduced many important documents to ashes.

While no one was injured in the mishap, the fire that originated inside the storeroom is said to have burnt many important documents including some documents pertaining to the next general elections.

Following the mishap, the fire services department was informed which reached the spot and doused the blaze.

The exact reason behind the blaze is yet to be ascertained. However, it is suspected that short circuit inside the storeroom might have sparked the fire.

Speaking about the mishap, Paralakhemundi Municipality Chairperson Nirmala Sethi said, “It was a Sunday night, so nobody was there. However, we rushed to the spot after hearing about the fire.”

Asked about the election-related documents in the storeroom, Sethi said, “Nobody has caused the fire deliberately. It has happened due to short circuit.”

Earlier on February 9, a man allegedly tried to set ablaze the executive officer of Barbil municipality in Keonjhar district for reportedly not looking into his complaint of encroachments near his house.

Sources said the accused Abhishek Gupta went to the municipality office and had a heated exchange with the executive officer Abhisek Panda over the encroachments. Gupta then allegedly took out a bottle containing petrol and poured it on the officer. He then took out a lighter and attempted to set Panda on fire.

However, the officer raised an alarm and other staff present in the office managed to overpower Gupta and handed him over to the police.