LDA Plaza: Fire continues, charred bodies hang out of windows

Published: May 10, 2013
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Flames and smoke spew out from the seventh floor of the building. PHOTO: SHAFIQ MALIK, ABID NAWAZ/EXPRESS

Flames and smoke spew out from the seventh floor of the building. PHOTO: SHAFIQ MALIK, ABID NAWAZ/EXPRESS

LAHORE: More than 24 hours have passed since the fire erupted at the LDA Plaza in Lahore yet flames continued to be seen on the ninth floor of the building, while charred bodies were visible on top of an AC unit outside the building, reported Express News on Saturday.

Families of the missing victims waited patiently outside the building as fire fighters and rescue workers waited on the building to “cool down” and continued to extinguish the fire.

After continued delays, some exasperated families tried to get into the plaza themselves to bring out the remaining dead. Mourning families were visibly frustrated as people are still reported to be missing and have received little or no information from relevant authorities.

Nearly 25 bodies are expected to be inside the building but rescuers claim the possibility of finding victims alive is very low. At least 22 people have been confirmed dead so far.

Authorities and officials remain missing at large, adding to the frustration of those families waiting in the heat.

Initial reports suggest that the fire may have started due to a short circuit. Twenty six people were rescued from the fire in total.

Records destroyed

The fire has been deemed “mysterious” as it was reported to fire services 40 minutes after it first erupted. The fire had already burnt a lot of the offices on the floors on which it erupted by the time it was reported.

The floors that have been destroyed consisted mainly of offices related to finance and audit operations. Original records of projects such as Tajpur, Bahria Town and other large projects were kept in the offices.

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Reader Comments (19)

  • Sid
    May 10, 2013 - 3:09PM

    “Original records of projects such as Tajpur, Bahria Town and **other large projects** were kept in the offices.”

    Do other large projects refer to flyovers and MetroBus?Recommend

  • M@ni
    May 10, 2013 - 3:13PM

    “Bahria Town and other large projects were kept in the offices.” Enough to understand

    Recommend

  • Tim
    May 10, 2013 - 3:37PM

    This was arson. Too bad those responsible are going to rule us for 5 years.

    Recommend

  • kamran
    May 10, 2013 - 4:05PM

    Malik Riaz is offering 0.5 million to families of the deceased.

    Recommend

  • aaaaa
    May 10, 2013 - 4:51PM

    @Sid:

    you mean the projects already cleared by transparency international as clean?

    Recommend

  • May 10, 2013 - 5:49PM

    This incident was very awful, many families got ruined now. Pathetic :(

    Recommend

  • May 10, 2013 - 5:51PM

    the incident was very awful, many families got ruined, the record for metro bus project was also there.

    Recommend

  • Saima
    May 10, 2013 - 6:23PM

    and it’s Saturday?

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  • Stranger
    May 10, 2013 - 6:35PM

    Great tragedy . May their souls rest in peace .

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  • Lahori Badshah
    May 10, 2013 - 7:00PM

    we need proper governance and vision and not bus and motor way. Civic institutions and reforms are needed not SCHEMES of yellow cab and laptops!

    Recommend

  • Nadir
    May 10, 2013 - 7:11PM

    LDA and Bahria Town are in dispute for the past couple of years. Now the floors with the records go up in flames and Malik Riaz is offering 500,000 as compensation?

    Recommend

  • Kulwant Singh
    May 10, 2013 - 7:42PM

    The Govt has not announced any compensation till date,the Govt must com forward to the help of those famiies who suffered in the inferno it is the duty of the Govt.Sorry for the victims may Allah give peace to the departed souls.

    Recommend

  • afia
    May 10, 2013 - 7:47PM

    @Sid:
    ya..they mean metro bus…who else would do so? just one day before election, the records of metro bus has been destroyed…

    Recommend

  • External Hand
    May 10, 2013 - 7:51PM

    This reminds of the Mantralaya fire that broke out due to ‘electrical failure’ in Mumbai. Documents related to the Adarsh Housing scam and sundry irrigation scams were among papers gutted.

    This proves that India or Pakistan – the political class is united in its venality.

    Recommend

  • Max
    May 10, 2013 - 9:09PM

    To hide the misdoings of a few, many lives were put in danger and some were even lost, tragically. Now these same few are asking us to give them another chance. By doing so, they are making fun of our intelligence and trusting nature. Who can blame them, we are bent upon repeating our mistakes while conveniently overlooking theirs.

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  • SHB
    May 10, 2013 - 11:00PM

    This fire incident looks fishy

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  • numbersnumbers
    May 11, 2013 - 12:35AM

    In should be noted that in most of the world the construction of high rise buildings requires fire resistant dedicated stair wells with marked fire exit doors on each floor, along with other fire safety construction specific codes to ensure safe fire evacuation.
    One can take a quick trip to the Gulf countries to see what extent these codes are vigorously enforced to protect their citizens!
    If such construction codes are not present in Pakistan, (or ignored by way of bribes and corruption), then these needless horrific deaths will be repeated over and over!
    The major news organizations need to inspect high rise structures to see if such basic fire safety design features such as fire stairs are present, AND PUBLISH THE RESULTS!

    Recommend

  • Amjad
    May 11, 2013 - 1:55AM

    @aaaaa:
    Please look for their statement. They issue NO clearances. TI issued clear statements explaining their methodologies. If TI cleared it, why wasn’t the record handed over to NAB in time?

    Recommend

  • Amjad
    May 11, 2013 - 2:03AM

    Do not filter this comment. Many of us were not moved by the events of 9-11. Many others were rather happy. Lately, we have had several incidents in which people chose to die by jumping instead of being burnt alive. We should rethink our actions. Run the recordings of LDA building fire and twin tower blaze and you shall only see helpless humans choosing their mode of death. Americans saw 9-11 only once. We see it happening every other day. Lets start thinking beyond that was told by our respectable molvee sahibs.

    Recommend

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