Five people were burned and seven vehicles ripped open Tuesday morning in Madhu Vihar district, east Delhi, after a taxi driver allegedly set fire to the taxi stand to express his anger after being reprimanded by his employer and the owner of the taxi stand. Two of the injured are currently in critical condition with more than 70% burns, police said, adding that the driver involved has been arrested.
Priyanka Kashyap, Deputy Commissioner of Police (East), identified the accused driver as 32-year-old Manoj Kumar, alias Jhandu Shah. “The defendant, who also works as a taxi driver and resides at the taxi rank itself, disclosed during questioning that the owner of the Pankaj Plaza taxi rank, Sukhveer Singh, 45, who is also be his employer, had scolded him and behaved badly with him on Monday. Angered by this, he set fire to the taxi rank and then went to Madhu Vihar police station,” he said. she declared.
She said the injured were identified as NB Bahuguna (65), Chander Pal (32), Sikander (45), Ajay Kumar (32) and Durga Singh (45). “While Bahuguna has over 90% burns, Sikander has 70% burns. Both are critical. The other people also have nearly 30% burns. A case against Kumar has been registered at Madhu Vihar Police Station,” the DCP said. All the injured were sleeping in their taxis at the time of the incident.
Kashyap said after receiving information about the fire, the police alerted the Delhi Fire Service (DFS).
DFS Chief Atul Garg said after being alerted, a fire crew rushed to the scene. “Seven vehicles including cars, bicycles and scooters were on fire and five people were burned. We rescued them and sent them to Lal Bahadur Shastri Hospital,” he said.
When contacted, a doctor from the emergency department at Lal Bahadur Shastri Hospital said a team of expert doctors were working tirelessly to save the lives of the two severely burned people. “They were brought here in a very bad condition. We are working to save them,” the doctor said, asking not to be named.