Bareon/Kotkhai: Twelve houses were gutted in fire at Bareon village of Panog panchayat in Kotkhai region of Shimla district today. Fortunately, no causalities have been reported so far.

The incident took place around 10 am when fire broke out in a temple room of a house and spread quickly, engulfing another 11 houses in the neighbourhood.

Villagers tried to douse the fire, but as houses were built from wood, fire extinguishers and peoples effort proved inadequate. Though, fire brigade from Theog reached the spot, but till then most of houses had been reduced to ashes.

Govt official reached the spot and provided Rs. 20 thousands relief to each to fire victims.

Fire incidents during winters are a common site in Himachal Pradesh. Fire destroys properties (houses, apple orchards and forest wealth) worth of crore every year. Proper fire extinguishing facilities can help to avoid such accidents, but due to the government ignorance and lack of will to provide augmented facilities at village level there is no respite for the people who fall victim to these incidents. Government’s negligence and uninformed citizens are the main reason for the huge loses of property and life every year.