With rapid deforestation, dwindling water resources and a feeble past monsoon turning Nepal into a combustible tinder box, two Indians became the latest victims as fires began spreading across the dry nation, killing at least eight.
Ajay Sharma, 25, from Champaran in Bihar, and Amish Kumar Sharma, a 15-year-old from Sitamarhi in the same state, were killed in the Kathmandu valley on an early Tuesday when a fire broke out in a furniture factory in Imadol in Lalitpur city, police said.
The fire could have started due to an electrical fault, police said.
The two became engulfed in flames when they went inside to fetch their mobile telephones which they had left behind. Fire tenders could douse the flames only after four hours.
Since last week, the dry summer has seen fires break out in several districts as well as community forests, killing six more and destroying property worth millions of rupees.
At least three people, including a woman, were killed in a fire in Kapilavastu district in southern Nepal. More than 50 huts were destroyed in the blaze, police said.
Fires have also erupted in Siraha where a woman was killed and Udaypur where a mentally challenged woman died trying to leap from a wall. Fires also broke out in Dang, Bhaktapur, Sarlahi, Saptari and Bara districts, police said. The eighth victim was a five-year-old girl, Usha Yadav.