9 Dec 2011

Scores dead after fire sweeps through Indian hospital

10:12 pm on 9 December 2011

Fire has swept through a seven-storey hospital in the eastern Indian city of Kolkata, killing at least 73 people, most of them patients on Friday.

The flames have been brought under control and rescue workers are retrieving bodies from the building, Reuters reports.

Television showed patients being rolled out on stretchers and distraught relatives waiting outside the hospital as a thick layer of smoke engulfed the building.

Ninety patients were safely evacuated.

Authorities believe the fire started in the basement, where flammable materials such as oxygen cylinders were stored.