A fire broke out at a state-run girls' hostel in Khammam in Telangana in which a nine-year-old girl died of asphyxiation and burn injuries, the police said today.
Two more girls were hospitalised with breathing problems after thick smoke engulfed the hall at the hostel around 11pm on Sunday night, where 20 girls were sleeping, they said.
All the girls were rescued except for the nine-year-old, a fourth standard student, who died on the spot.
The police suspect that a short circuit was caused due to rain, following which a tubelight burst and sparks fell on a bed, resulting in flames and thick smoke engulfing the hall.
A fire engine was pressed into service and the flames were doused, the police said.