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Mumbai: Massive fire breaks out in Bandra slum, reaches station FOB; no casualties reported

The massive fire broke out at around 4.20 pm when municipal officials were carrying out an anti-encroachment drive outside the busy Bandra station.

Fire which broke out in the Behrampada-Garibnagar slum area near the eastern side of the suburban Bandra railway station here, had been brought under control, a fire brigade official said.

The fire-fighting team was making relentless efforts to douse the flames, he added.

“The fire is almost under control and we have contained it from all sides,” the official said, adding that if everything went according to the plan, cooling operations would commence soon.

No casualties had been reported among the residents of the area, while a fire brigade personnel was injured, the official said.

At least 16 fire engines and 10 water tankers were pressed into service to douse the flames.

The blaze forced the Western Railway to stop the Harbour Line services between Wadala and Andheri, in both directions, between 4.25 pm and 4.50 pm. The services were resumed subsequently.

The flames also touched the windows of the booking office at the south side foot over bridge (FOB) of the station.

The hawkers and slum-dwellers bore most of the brunt, losing their belongings to the fire.

“Some furniture and windows of the booking office at the south side FOB at the Bandra station got damaged due to the fire from the nearby slums…No casualty to railway staffers or passengers was reported,” a statement from the Western Railway said.

Prima facie, it appeared that an explosion of gas cylinders, while the civic body officials were demolishing the encroachments in the congested area, led to the fire but the exact reason and extent of property loss would be known only after a detailed inquiry, officials said.