The High Commission of India in Maldives said they are in close contact with the Maldivian authorities and tweeted following numbers to reach them: +9607361452 ; +9607790701 .
“We are deeply saddened by the tragic fire incident in Malé which has caused loss of lives, including reportedly of Indian nationals,” it tweeted.
We are deeply saddened by the tragic fire incident in Malé which has caused loss of lives, including reportedly of… https://t.co/FfBrEwzBrs— India in Maldives (@HCIMaldives) 1668057190000
A Male fire service official said that it took them about four hours to put out the blaze. “We have found 10 bodies from the upper floor of a building destroyed in the fire, which originated from a ground-floor vehicle repair garage,” the fire service official said. The living quarters had only a single window, a report said.
The fire broke out in the M. Nirufehi area near Maaveyo Mosque around 12:30 am (local time), according to news portal SunOnline international.
“Ten people were confirmed dead, of which eight were Indian nationals. We are yet to ascertain the nationalities of the two other victims,” Ramdhir Singh, Welfare Officer, working in the Indian High Commission told PTI.
Fire and rescue teams reached the spot by 12:33 am (local time) and the blaze was completely contained by 4:34 am (local time). The cause of the fire is still not known.
Firefighters try to douse the fire that broke out in a building lodging foreign workers in Maldives capital Male on November 10, 2022. (AFP)
The capital of the archipelago best known as an upmarket holiday destination is one of the world’s most densely populated cities.
A security official confirmed the dead included a Bangladesh national as well.
Maldivian political parties have criticised conditions for foreign workers.
They are thought to make up about half of Male’s 250,000-strong population and are mostly from Bangladesh, India, Nepal, Pakistan and Sri Lanka.
Their poor living conditions were brought to light during the Covid-19 pandemic when the infection spread three times faster among foreign workers compared with locals.
(With agency inputs)