I saw people with pails and buckets, running toward the burning house. On enquiry I learnt that the palatial double-storeyed house of my friend, Mr. Chopra, was on fire. I ran downstairs with a bucket. In no time, I reached the place of occurrence.
It was a heart-rending sight. The newly-built house of my friend was all ablaze. The sepent-like flames were rising to the sky. A strong wind was fanning the flames. The people were throwing water and sand over the flames. My friend’s wife was beating her breast.
She was tearing her hair. She was crying piteously, “We are undone! Save us for God’s sake!” The household effects lay scattered in the street. The fire was becoming more and more dangerous. Tongues of the flames seemed to lick the ceiling of the second storey. The neighbours were trying to save their own houses.
I rang the fire brigade. Soon the fire brigade was heard rushing to the place. The fire brigade people, wearing fire proof uniforms and steel helmets on their heads, started playing the hoses on the flames and also on the adjoining houses to isolate the fire.
The fire-engines pumped water to a great height. They fought hard with the flames. After two -hours hard and strenuous efforts, they succeeded in bringing the fire under control. The flames gradually died down. All heaved a sigh of relief. The people expressed gratitude to the firemen. Some firemen received minor burns and injuries.
The beautiful house of my friend was reduced to a heap of ashes. There was a terrible loss of property and fortunately no loss of life. My friend’s father looked pale and careworn. He had suffered a heavy loss. The loss was estimated at thirty thousand rupees. The cause of the fire was found to be some defect in the electric fittings in the building.