A 29-year-old woman and her two children, aged seven and nine, died while they were trying to escape a blaze that had broken out at their building in Faridabad’s Dabua Colony around 7.30 am Saturday. According to fire officers, Nita Bhati and the children, Yashika and Dev, lived on the first floor of a building that also housed a playschool and a clothing shop. All of them died of suffocation.
“We received a call in the morning about a fire that broke out near a mosque in Dabua Colony. We reached the spot in five minutes and found that the woman’s husband was trying to douse the fire, while the family was stuck upstairs. We entered the house from a window at the back of the house. The children died due to suffocation at the spot, and we took the wife to a hospital, where the doctor declared her dead,” said Sube Singh, PRO, Faridabad Police.
Nita’s husband Vishal Bhati (30) had gone to buy milk when the blaze broke out. “When I returned, I saw flames inside the shop. I went upstairs, alerted my wife and told her to rush with the children downstairs. My car was parked right outside the shop, and to make sure there wasn’t a blast, I rushed out to move it to a safer spot. I then returned to douse the fire while the neighbours called police and the fire services. But smoke entered the first floor and my family got stuck,” Bhati told The Sunday Express.
Just four days before the incident, the family had returned from a holiday in Manali. Nita worked as a teacher at the playschool in the same building, which was closed due to the summer vacations. The couple’s daughter Yashika studied at Jeeva Public School in Faridabad, while Dev attended the St Joseph School in Sector 21.
Vikas Khatana (32), an eyewitness, blamed defunct transformers near the house. “There was a spark in the MCB; such incidents are common in our locality since transformers here often get overheated. Last week, a fire broke out at another shop in Dabua; no casualties were reported then. We have registered a complaint to fix this issue,” he said.