Army Officer Burnt Alive In Bandipore Blaze

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SRINAGAR (ONS)- An army officer belonging to the elite counter-insurgency unit was charred to death when a fire broke out in the camp of 5 Para at on the outskirts of the district headquarters of Bandipora last night, officials said on Saturday. Four huts were also gutted in the incident.

Confirming the incident, Defense spokesman, Lt Col J S Brar, told Kashmir Observer the fire broke out at the camp located at Sonarwani on Bandipore-Gurez road, 60 km from here, around midnight (between 1.30 a.m. and 2 a.m.). “The likely cause of the blaze was short circuit, while an investigation has been ordered to find it out,” he said, adding four wooden operational structures were also gutted in the fire.

He said Lt Col Sarang Apte was burnt alive in the incident. Other army personnel stationed in the camp are safe, he added.

Reports said the entire area was rocked by explosions, apparently caused due to blasts in LPG cylinders that might have been lying in the camp. Some ammunition, furniture and other equipment have also been destroyed in the fire.

The fire tenders from the nearby Fire and Emergency Services headquarters rushed to the spot immediately and fought several hours to douse the leaping flames and control the fire.

Senior administration and police officials, including the deputy commissioner, Manzoor Ahmad Lone, and senior superintendent of police, visited the place. On their part, the police have also registered a case and started investigation into the incident.

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