September 12, 2012 11:47 am
More than 100 workers have been killed and several others injured in separate fire incidents at two factories in Pakistan’s eastern city of Lahore and the southern city of Karachi.
The first incident took place on Tuesday after a fire broke out at a shoe factory in Lahore, killing 21 workers and injuring 14 others.
Tariq Zaman, a government official in the city, said the fire was caused by a faulty electricity generator.
Karachi fire chief Ehtesham Salim said during the early hours of Wednesday that the death toll is likely to rise.
“We are now searching in the basement and there are about 35 fire engines taking part in the firefighting. Most of the fire has been extinguished, but there is smoldering in some parts due to plastics and chemicals,” he added.
Abdus Salam, a doctor at Karachi’s Civil Hospital, said about ten women were among the dead workers.
The industry minister for Sindh Province, Rauf Siddiqi, said, “We have ordered an inquiry into how the fire erupted and why proper emergency exits were not provided at the factory so that the workers could escape,” Pakistan media reports.