Islamabad-Pakistan Institute of Medical Sciences nursing hostel on Monday caught fire which turned one of the big living halls into ashes.

Details said that the fire broke out early morning reportedly due to short circuit as the building was old and there was no proper maintenance done for last few years.

Hospital officials also informed The Nation that around a dozen female nursing students were present in the hall when the fire broke out, who left the room in emergency.

Officials said that when the fire brigade reached for extinguishing the fire, it had caught the entire room. Though the fire brigade contained the fire up to the room, but students faced huge loss as their luggage was burnt.

The officials also said that human injury was not reported in the incident, but monetary losses of the students were in thousands.

Hospital officials said that PIMS nursing hostel had the capacity of around 300 students, and 50 students were living in the hall which caught fire due to short circuit.

Hospital officials said that the hostel required maintenance work which was not done due to shortage of funds.

A nurse Safia Bibi said that she saw smoke in the hall and fled from the scene as electric circuits were sparking everywhere. “Around twelve girls were in the hall and rest of them were on duty,” she said.

Safia Bibi also said that there was no proper security and safety measures in the hostel when fire broke out which led to the financial damage of the students living there.

Another nurse Saima added that though students remained safe but nothing was left in the room as everything turned into ashes. “We had done Eid shopping, but now everything is burnt,” she said.

The female nursing staff also said that they were being provided low standard living facilities and such damage before Eid had put them in the state of shock.

“It was negligence of the administration; it should have taken preventive measures to control such kind of incidents. Later, female nursing staff gathered outside the PIMS administration block and staged protest against the administration for not providing them sufficient facilities.

They chanted slogans for provision of better living conditions in the hostel for the safety of their life.

“Our stipend is not being paid and we do not have proper beds in our hostel,” said Moazma Ali. She also said that the hostel building was constructed around 2 decades ago and since then no serious steps had been taken to improve its standards.

“The administration claims that it does not have sufficient funds but their answer is not solution of our problems,” she said.

Nursing Association representative Sadia Bashir said that the administration has now assured addressing the problems of nurses living in the hostel. She said that around 35 students who suffered financial damage have been sent on vacations till Eid, while administration has also vowed providing them monetary compensation after this incident.

She also added that the administration has also committed repairing of hostel and providing all required facilities at hostel. Spokesperson PIMS Waseem Khawaja said that two fire brigade vehicles reached the after the incident was reported and limited the fire upto the hall only. He said that apparently the fire erupted because of short-circuit.

Dr Waseem added that the hospital administration would take all possible measures to facilitate the nursing staff living in the hostel. He said that the students who faced monetary loss will be paid stipend while they have been also relived from the duties and will be called back after proper arrangement of their livening.