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Theni forest fire: Tamil Nadu Governor Banwarilal Purohit condole deaths

Theni forest fire: Tamil Nadu Governor Banwarilal Purohit condole deaths

Theni: The toll in the forest fire in Theni district rose to 10 as the Tamil Nadu government ordered a probe into it and assured action against those who allegedly arranged for the expedition without permission.

DMK working president M.K. Stalin, AIADMK leader T.T.V. Dhinakaran and PMK founder S. Ramadoss, among others, condoled the death of nine trekkers in the Kurangani Hills fire.

The dead included Chennai-based Akila, Premalatha, Punitha, Subha, Arun and Vipin and Erode's Vijaya, Vivek and Tamilselvi. Also, she added that "While the trekkers were coming down, they came across a forest fire and the group broke up".

The condition of four patients in GRH is highly critical, said it's Dean Dr.D.Maruthu Pandian. Eight trekkers were sent to the circuit house. "One helicopter has doused the fire", Defence Minister Nirmala Sitharaman told ANI.

The order is binding on all forest areas in the state, the forest department said.

Of the injured, ten people with second and third-degree burns were undergoing treatment at burns ward in GRH, while the remaining people were getting treatment in private hospitals.

If the trekking area covers national parks or wildlife sanctuaries, prior permission must be obtained from the Chief Wildlife Warden or local wildlife authorities.

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Relatives of the hikers grieve outside the hospital in Theni. The two groups, which went their own ways, were climbing down the hills when they got trapped in the forest fire on Sunday evening. They were supposed to return on Sunday.

The prime minister also expressed anguish over loss of lives in Kathmandu plane crash.

The military was deployed to help with rescue efforts after the state government asked for assistance.

The Kurangani hills in Theni district, which border a forest reserve and a national park, are a popular destination for hikers and worldwide adventure tourists.

Speaking to IANS on phone, a Revenue Department official in Madurai said: "The injured have been admitted to hospitals in Madurai".

According to the website, the CTC is a non-profit, volunteer group which organises outdoor sports, environmental conservation and social activities throughout the year on weekends and weekday mornings.