A portion of a multi-storey building in Mumbai, housing the residence and office of bollywood actress Deepika Padukone, was gutted in a fire on Wednesday, officials said.
Deepika was not inside the 33-storey Beaumonde building in Prabhadevi area where the blaze emanated from the top floor, according to fire department officials and sources close to the actress.
Deepika has residence in one floor of the building and office in another but both were unaffected by the fire, said the sources close to her.
Over 90 people, including Deepika's staff members, were safely evacuated from the building, the officials said.
Two firefighters suffered minor injuries while dousing the blaze, the officials said.
The fire was reported at 2.08 pm and it later spread to the 32nd floor, the fire department officials said, adding it was doused after nearly five hours.
"The fire was confined to two upper most duplex floors. Our team encountered intense heat, smoke and wind at upper level. But beating all the odds, we contained the fire, said Mumbai fire brigade chief P S Rahangdale.
The 32-year-old star later took to Twitter to assure everyone about her well-being and extended gratitude to the firefighters.
'I am safe. Thank You everyone. Let us pray for our firefighters who are at site risking their lives...' she wrote.
Photographs: Sahil Salvi/Rediff.com
The floors that caught fire belonged to one Harish Abhiyani, said a fire department statement, adding fire resistance system was in place there.
Senior Police Inspector of Dadar Police Station said a case will be registered and an investigation held to find out if there was any kind of negligence, he added.
The firefighters had to climb the stairs all the way up to the 32nd and 33rd floors as the snorkels possessed by the Mumbai Fire Brigade cannot reach that height, a senior fire brigade official said, requesting anonymity.
The ladders with the Fire Brigade can reach only up to a height of 90 meters while the height of this building is 110 meters, the official said.
"In such cases, we use in-built fire fighting system of the building," he said.
Locals and representatives aired their resentment over the clearances given by the civic authorities to construction of such high rise buildings when the fire brigade is not equipped to reach up to the higher floors.
"I cannot understand why and how civic body and fire brigade give permission to erect high rise towers when they do not have ladders or snorkels to reach up to the top floors. First, they should equip themselves and then only give permission to high rise," said local Shiv Sena MLA Sada Sarvankar.