New Delhi, Feb 13 (PTI) The massive fire that broke out at a city hotel on Tuesday, killing 17 persons and injuring several others, snuffed the lives of three persons who had come here from Tamil Nadu on an official trip.

The three included a dentist who had come to Delhi to attend a seminar.

Aravinth Sukumaran (35) and his colleague Nand Kumar (34), working as merchandisers for a Tirupur-based exports firm, were in Delhi to attend a two-day meeting.

They took a flight to Delhi on Sunday and reached at around 10 pm.

“They attended the meeting scheduled for Monday. Due to some reason, another meeting, which was scheduled for the next day, was cancelled, so they were planning to return on Tuesday,” Aravinth’s father Sukumaran said.

The families of Aravinth and Nand Kumar arrived from Tirupur at the Tamil Nadu Bhawan here on Tuesday night after they got to know about the incident through television channels.

“Aravinth used to visit Delhi frequently on official work. The Arpit Palace hotel was not new to him. He had stayed there a couple of times. It is unfortunate that something like this happened this time,” Rajesh, one of the family members, said.

Aravinth’s cousin Swapna and husband Rajesh reached Delhi from Jaipur as soon as they got confirmation of his death through one of Rajesh’s colleagues who worked with a regional television news channel.

“Initially, we thought Aravinth would have survived with minor injuries. But later, we got to know that he was no more,” Swapna said.

Aravinth was working with an exports firm for close to 15 years. He is survived by his wife, a son — a Class 7 student — and a daughter who studies in Class 4.

As Nand Kumar’s post-mortem was being done at the Ram Manohar Lohia hospital, his brother and a colleague were busy completing all the formalities to take the body to Tirupur the same day.

“Nand Kumar had come with Aravinth to attend the meeting. I had my last conversation with Aravinth two days ago. I was returning to Tirupur from Ludhiana then. It was a casual, work-related chat. We were discussing about the meeting for which they were here,” Jaikumar, a colleague, said.

Nand Kumar was working under Aravinth for close to a year. He belongs to Tirupur and is survived by his wife and a three-year-old son.

A 52-year-old dentist, Shankar Narayan Sheshadri from Trichy in Tamil Nadu, who was here to attend a seminar, also lost his life in the tragedy.

His family reached Delhi on Wednesday morning to collect his body.

“Sheshadri was here to attend a seminar. He was researching on stem cells and was here for the same,” Vijayalatha, Sheshadri’s sister-in-law who flew down from Ajmer to receive his body, said at the mortuary.

A family member said they were trying to contact Sheshadri from 5.30 am on Tuesday, but were not able to reach him. His belongings, including his laptop which contained the soft copy of his work, was also not found and it was feared that his research documents were gutted in the fire.

Another deceased — Santosh Mahadev (35) — a resident of Pune who ran a clinical research organisation in Mumbai, was here on official work. Unfortunately, his friend Rahul, who had come to meet him, also lost his life in the tragedy. “We are taking his body to his native place Solapur for the final rites,” a friend of Mahadev said.

Rahul worked as an assistant drug controller at the Central Drugs Standard Control Organisation, he said.

This is published unedited from the PTI feed.