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We have to look for bodies, if any, inside the hotel.

According to the fire department, they received a call at around 4.35 am about the incident following which 24 fire tenders were rushed to the spot.It took almost four hours for them to douse the fire that had swept through all the floors of the five-storey building which had a terrace kitchen in violation of rules.

Delhi home minister Satyendra Jain told reporters that rules were flouted to construct extra floors, with a terrace being used as an open-air restaurant.

At least 17 people are dead as a result of the blaze overnight in New Delhi, India. Those staying in the hotel included a group of tourists from Myanmar, broadcaster NDTV said, adding that authorities were trying to ascertain their whereabouts.

Most of the victims - including many from a wedding party - were said to be sleeping when the fire broke out. Officials said three persons sustained injuries in the incident.

Fire officer Vijay Paul says 25 fire engines responded to the blaze, which has been extinguished.

"There was wooden paneling on corridor because of which people couldn't use corridors to evacuate", news agency ANI quoted fire officer Vipin Kental as saying.

A call about the fire was received at 4.35 am and 24 fire tenders rushed to the spot, a senior Delhi fire service official said.

A fire accident in a hotel at Delhi's Karol Bagh area has consumed 17 lives.

However, neither Jain nor Kejriwal clarified whether they came to know about the violations in Karol Bagh today or were they already aware of it.

The disaster is the latest of its kind in India, where poor health and safety standards - especially in hotels and facilities for the poor - are all too common.

Many commercial establishments in the city lack emergency exits or fire fighting equipment. 30 fire tenders had rushed to the spot.

A video of the incident showed two people jumping from the fourth floor of the burning building.

Meanwhile, Prime Minister Narendra Modi condoled the loss of lives in a tweet. "Ordered fire inspection of buildings in the area".