Narrow escape for Odisha IPS officers as 3 Satkosia eco retreat tents catch fire

Published on Feb 28, 2021 01:05 PM IST

Transport commissioner Sanjeeb Panda and his IPS officer wife Santosh Bala (Home department special secretary), were in one of the three tents that caught fire.

IPS officer Sanjeeb Panda tweeted about the fire this morning.(Courtesy- Twitter)
IPS officer Sanjeeb Panda tweeted about the fire this morning.(Courtesy- Twitter)
ByDebabrata Mohanty, Bhubaneswar

Two senior IPS officers had a narrow escape as the temporary canvas cottages they were staying in at Satkosia eco retreat camp near Baliput in Odisha’s Cuttack district were gutted following a major fire early Sunday morning.

The Satkosia Eco Retreat camps were started by Odisha tourism department on the banks of Mahanadi river at Baliput in Narasinghpur under Athagarh sub-division in the Cuttack district on December 29 last year to give an impetus to tourism in the aftermath of Covid-19. The camps were inaugurated by Union tourism minister Prahallad Singh Patel via video conferencing. Apart from Satkosia, a festival was also organised at Ramchandi beach in Konark, Bhitarkanika, Daringbadi and Hirakud.

Transport commissioner Sanjeeb Panda and his IPS officer wife Santosh Bala (Home department special secretary), were in one of the three tents at the Eco-Retreat site that caught fire. Panda tweeted that the fire started at 5am and added that he and his wife were safe. Three cottages were gutted.

“By the grace of God, me and Santosh escaped without any injury as fire broke out in our tent at Satkosia Eco Retreat at about 5am on 28.2.2021 due to an electrical short circuit. Three tents were burnt and there was no injury to anyone,” Panda tweeted, attaching a video clip of the fire.

Fire services personnel and the police rushed to the spot and doused the flames. However, the three cottages were completely gutted by the time.

While the exact cause of the blaze is yet to be ascertained, it is suspected that the fire was triggered by an electric short circuit in the power supply or in the air-conditioners installed in the cottages.

Also Read: Odisha limits precautionary measures for travellers from five high-risk states

The Odisha tourism department confirmed there was no injury or loss of life. "Safety of the tourists is paramount and all steps will be taken to prevent recurrence of such an incident in future," the department informed through a tweet. BJD's Badamba MLA Debi Mishra visited the spot and took stock of the situation.

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