‘Suffered damages worth lakhs… back to square one after Covid’: Shopkeepers after fire at cycle market in Delhi’s Jhandewalan

Dozens of shops were destroyed after a fire broke out in the Jhandewalan bicycle market on Friday afternoon. Delhi Fire Services rushed 27 firefighting tenders to the site after informing them that a fire broke out at 2pm in a shop adjacent to the Videocon Tower and was submerged within three hours. According to locals and shop owners, a short circuit in one of the shops on the ground floor led to a fire that spread to nearby shops.

The shops that were damaged mainly had pieces of plastic toys and bicycles. Officials said there were no reports of casualties.

In the basement, almost all shops were on fire, while more than 10 shops on the ground floor were destroyed. Officials said that several offices inside the compound were on fire.

“We saw a huge spark and there was a fire everywhere. We tried to get as many materials as possible. The heat was so intense that things far away also melted,” said Amit, a shop worker.

Many workers kept making the rounds inside the stores to provide whatever they could. Local residents said that nearly all of the stores in the front were destroyed.

For many store owners, the devastation comes at a time when the company is beginning to recover after two years of the pandemic-induced shutdown. “We have suffered lakhs of damage. They burned before our eyes. We really suffered during Covid and paid salaries while sitting at home. Step by step, we succeeded in getting our clients back.

“But now we’re back to square one,” said shop owner Harish Arora.

Officials said no flight information regarding the fire had been recorded by police as of Friday evening

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