40 Indians Killed 50 Injured In Kuwait Building Fire, PM Takes Stock

Published: June 13,2024 12:05 PM

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Tragic Fire in Kuwait Claims 49 Lives, Including 40 Indians; Government Steps In

June 13, 2024 — A devastating fire broke out early this morning in a six-storey building in Kuwait's Mangaf city, resulting in the tragic death of 49 workers, including 40 Indians. The fire, which started in a kitchen at 6 am local time (9 am IST), left 50 others injured. The building housed nearly 195 workers, all employed by the same company.

According to officials, the majority of the deaths were due to smoke inhalation as residents were asleep when the fire erupted. The injured are currently receiving treatment in five government hospitals in Kuwait: Adan, Jaber, Farwaniya, Mubarak Al Kabeer, and Jahra. Hospital authorities have confirmed that most of the admitted patients are in stable condition. Prime Minister Narendra Modi convened a high-level review meeting at his residence following the incident. He expressed his condolences to the bereaved families and announced a compensation of ₹ 2 lakh for the families of those who died. "Our thoughts are with the families of the victims. We pray for the speedy recovery of the injured," the Prime Minister said.

On the Prime Minister's directives, Minister of State Shri Kirti Vardhan Singh is set to travel to Kuwait immediately to assist in the repatriation of mortal remains and to ensure medical support for the injured. External Affairs Minister S. Jaishankar has been in contact with his Kuwaiti counterpart, Abdullah Ali Al-Yahya. "I have been assured that the incident will be thoroughly investigated, and responsibility will be established," Mr. Jaishankar stated on X. He emphasized the urgency of repatriating the bodies of the deceased at the earliest. The Indian embassy in Kuwait is actively coordinating with local authorities and has set up a helpline (+965-65505246) for family members seeking information. This line supports both WhatsApp and regular calls to assist those affected.

Indians constitute a significant portion of Kuwait's population, with about 21 per cent (1 million) of the total population and approximately 30 per cent (900,000) of the workforce. Among the other victims of the fire were workers from Pakistan, the Philippines, Egypt, and Nepal.This tragic incident highlights the vulnerability of expatriate workers in the region and underscores the need for stringent safety measures in residential and working environments.
As investigations continue, both Indian and Kuwaiti authorities are focused on providing support to the victims and their families, ensuring medical care for the injured, and facilitating the prompt repatriation of the deceased. The international community awaits further updates on the investigation and the steps taken to prevent such tragedies in the future.