Pipli: A 65-year-old man and his minor daughter died of burns after their house at Danagahiri village here was allegedly set ablaze late Saturday night. Wife of the deceased, who also sustained critical burns is battling for life in hospital. Preliminary investigations have revealed that the accused had bolted the house from outside before torching it.
The deceased were identified as Muhammad Abdul and his daughter Najo Begum (12). Abdul’s wife Rahima Bibi (55), who has suffered more than 90 per cent burns, is battling for life at SCB Medical College and Hospital in Cuttack, sources said Sunday.
Police suspect someone from Abdul’s relatives had set afire the house in an attempt to settle score with the couple and their minor daughter.
“In an attempt to ensure that no one of the family escapes, the miscreant(s) had locked the door from outside before pouring kerosene and setting the house on fire. The petrol from the two-wheeler in the room added to the blaze,” Pipli inspector in-charge (IIC) Sarat Chandra Sahu said, adding that culprit(s) would be soon behind the bars.
Sources said a passing truck driver spotted smoke emanating out of the asbestos and alerted the neighbours. On being informed, fire fighting personnel reached the spot with police and broke open the door to rescue
The trio with more than 90 per cent burns was rushed to the district headquarters hospital and then to Capital Hospital in Bhubaneswar. Later they were shifted to SCBMCH where doctors pronounced the father and daughter dead.
Sources said Pipli tehsildar Sridhar Biswal, additional superintendent of police Jagannath Pradhan, sub-collector Madhusudan Das, sub divisional police officer Dilip Tripathy and Pipli IIC reached the spot with a scientific team and
Agriculture minister Pradeep Maharathy took stock of the situation and directed the district administration to facilitate possible assistance to the woman for her treatment.