Prime Minister Narendra Modi has expressed condolences to the family members of the five workers who were killed in a major fire at the Serum Institute of India in Pune on Thursday.

In a tweet, PM Modi said he is anguished to hear about the tragedy and death of five people.

"Anguished by the loss of lives due to an unfortunate fire at the Serum Institute of India. In this sad hour, my thoughts are with the families of those who lost their lives. I pray that those injured recover at the earliest," PM Modi tweeted.

Around 2.45pm, a major fire broke out at an under-construction building at the Serum Institute's campus in Pune. The fire, however, has not impacted the unit manufacturing Covishield vaccine against coronavirus.

It took at least 15 fire tenders almost two hours to douse the fire. According to initial investigation, the fire was caused by an insulation material that caught fire during welding.

The deceased have been identified as Rama Shankar Harijan and Bipin Saroj residents of UP, Sushil Kumar Pandey from Bihar; and Mahendra Ingle and Pratik Pashte from Pune. All were contractual labourers and were engaged in electrical works.

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