Srinagar: In a tragic incident, three tourists from Bangladesh were charred to death in a massive fire that broke out in a houseboat in the Dal lake early on Saturday.
Police said the charred bodies of three tourists were recovered from the houseboat gutted in the blaze.
The tourists were identified as Anindaya Kowshal, Das Gupta, and Mohammad Moinud and they are staying in houseboat Safeena in Dal Lake.
Giving details of the incident, police said a massive fire broke out in the houseboats along the Ghat No 9 in Dal Lake Srinagar during the wee hours of today.
The conflagration quickly spread and engulfed 5 houseboats — Safeena, Sabreena, Young Gulshan, Lala Rukh and Khar Palace. Seven other residential huts and neighbouring houses in the vicinity were also gutted in the blaze, they said.
Police said 8 people staying in these houseboats were rescued and evacuated to safety through timely and valiant action by joint efforts of Srinagar Police, SDRF, Tourist Police, F&ES and civilians.
Earlier Fire and Emergency officials said that the fire broke out at 5 am in one of the houseboats near the Ghat number 9 in the Dal Lake and engulfed other nearby houseboats and other wooden residential structures.
The fire tenders were rushed from the river station Nehru Park, Batmaloo and Gawkadal to douse the leaping flames, they said.
Before the fire could be controlled five houseboats and more than a dozen wooden residential structures were gutted in the incident.
The cause of the fire is yet to be ascertained, they said.
The loss of the property is said to be in crores of rupees.
Deputy Commissioner Srinagar Aijaz Asad who visited the site said that a fire incident occurred at Ghat No 9 in Dal Lake during which five houseboats and adjoining residential hutments were gutted.
He said as soon as the fire incident broke ou,t the teams of SDRF, Kashmir police and Fire and Emergency agencies swung into action and tried to douse the fire.
Asad said the tourists staying in these houseboats and residents were first rescued and taken to the safer places.