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Mysterious fire in Kannauj: People spend sleepless nights

THE PEOPLE of Kannauj are spending sleepless nights these days following a series of incidents of fire in the area. During the past one week, thatched roofs, belonging to different villages, are catching fire simultaneously.
None | By HAIDAR Naqvi, Kanpur
PUBLISHED ON MAR 25, 2006 12:13 AM IST

THE PEOPLE of Kannauj are spending sleepless nights these days following a series of incidents of fire in the area. During the past one week, thatched roofs, belonging to different villages, are catching fire simultaneously.

All attempts of villagers to solve this problem have come to naught. Even the police are flummoxed by these incidents. The exorcists, who feel that such events can be checked by ‘divine’ powers, do not know how to tackle it.

Udharanpur, a tiny village of Kannauj,  is the worst affected. Here,  the people have given up all hopes.

Haunted, as they are, the people have approached the district administration which in turn is likely to seek expert advice from the IIT-K.

Some inhabitants of the affected villages, Ram Khilawan, Shitla Prasad and a few others who visited the city in connection with their business transactions, told the HT that the incidents of fire, which had started  soon after Holi, continued till date.

According to them, the first incident of fire was noticed in the house of Jai Shiv Srivastava who was even injured in the process.  Villagers initially thought that it was the handiwork of evil spirits and called ‘Tantriks (exorcists)’ to tackls this problem.

“Now, the things have gone out of control. No one knows when the house where they are living will catch fire,” said Ram Khilwan. However, when the incident was brought to the notice of a senior professor  of Electrical Engineering Department at the IIT-K  Dr Ravindra Arora said that though he had neither seen the location nor conducted any investigations, he was convinced that the incident was not caused by evil spirits.

Ball lighting or the fire balls which  frequently occur during dry weather must have caused the incidents of mysterious fire.

Dr  Arora  had unravelled the mystery of ‘Muhnuchwa’ in 2002. The Munuchwa  incident was also projected as the work of evil spirits or the super natural forces.

But when the incident was brought to his notice, he said  that the problem would come to an end son after the rainfall and it happened.

He told the Hindustan Times that  superficial rains this year  created a dry environment congenial for the growth of fire balls in  the comparatively open areas causing such incidents. 

He said due to poor rains, this year a situation  similar to that of the year 2002 developed and hence it could be the recurrence of ball lighting  or fire Balls. “The fire balls can ignite fire on dry straws.

But unless the surroundings were  studied and suitable investigations were done,  nothing definite could be said about the cause of fire.

He, however, said that the district authorities did not contact him so far for carrying out scientific  investigation into the mysterious fire. 

He further said that the problem of fire balls would  go as soon as the atmosphere gets cool.

 

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