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Karol Bagh Fire: Hotel Owner Arrested, to Be Produced in Court

Seventeen people were killed in a fire at Hotel Arpit Palace in Karol Bagh on 12 February. 

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The Delhi Police Crime Branch has arrested Rakesh Goel, the owner of Hotel Arpit Palace in Delhi’s Karol Bagh, where a fire claimed the lives of 17 people on 12 February.

Goel will be produced in court on Sunday, 17 February, DCP Rajesh Deo said.

Earlier, the police had arrested the hotel’s general manager Rajender and manager Vikas on the charges of culpable homicide not amounting to murder.

An FIR had been filed against the hotel owner, with police saying that the investigation prima facie suggests wilful negligence on the part of the hotel authorities.

The blaze, which started on the second floor of the hotel in the heart of the national capital around 3:30 am, trapped many guests who were deep in sleep. The deceased included a child and two people who jumped off the building in a bid to save themselves, officials said.

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The hotel was first granted a licence in October 2005 and was renewed every year. The last renewal was done on 25 May 2018 and was valid till 31 March, said an official of North Delhi Municipal Corporation.

Earlier, Union Minister KJ Alphons had claimed that the emergency exit of the Arpit Palace hotel was "too narrow" and was also locked.

The minister, who had visited the site of the tragedy in central Delhi's Karol Bagh locality, said he was sure that there would be violation of norms.

"When I headed to the emergency exit, I found that it had been locked yesterday (last night). Also, it was too narrow," he told reporters.

"Obviously, even if people came to the emergency exit, they could not have escaped as it was too narrow and it was locked anyway," he had said.

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Topics:  Delhi Police   KJ Alphons   Karol Bagh 

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