Hamirpur — A 75-year-old woman lost her life in a tragic forest fire in Bhagetu village, Maid Panchayat, Hamirpur district, marking the second fatality from forest fires in the area within two weeks. The deceased, Nikki Devi, wife of Dharam Singh, was working in her fields when she was caught in the blaze. Despite her attempts to extinguish the fire, she was unable to escape and succumbed to the flames.

The incident occurred on Thursday, with police receiving information of the tragic death at Police Station Sadar. By the time authorities arrived at the scene, the family had already brought Nikki Devi’s body back to their home. The police took the body into custody and later handed it over to the family after a post-mortem examination at Medical College Hamirpur. Superintendent of Police Bhagat Singh confirmed that an investigation is ongoing.

Nikki Devi was in her fields spreading dry pine leaves on the crops when the forest fire reached her. She attempted to control the fire but was quickly engulfed by the flames and burnt alive. This incident has brought to light the severe and ongoing threat posed by forest fires in the district.

This recent death follows the tragic demise of another woman on May 29 in the Chakmoh area, who died from suffocation due to smoke from a forest fire. The continuous outbreak of forest fires in the Hamirpur district has not only caused significant loss of life but has also devastated forest wealth, with 239 reported cases this season alone. Fires have ravaged 2,338.3 hectares of forest across 70 beats, resulting in damage worth crores of rupees.

The relentless heatwave has exacerbated the forest fire situation, turning it into a frequent and deadly occurrence. The local community is under severe stress, as daily life is disrupted by the persistent threat of fires. The district administration is grappling with the challenge of containing these fires and preventing further loss of life and property.