Disaster: A fire suspected to have started from a bukhari, razed two traditional houses to the ground and partially burnt another in Tshesar, Dhur in Chokhor, Bumthang around 7:30am yesterday.

Five families owned the three houses. The two houses from where the fire started lost all their belongings while police managed to save the third house, Dhur tshogpa, Pema Tshering said.

Three families whose houses were gutted by the fire managed to retrieve some belongings. The house from where the fire started is located at the edge of an alley and belonged to a woman, Pema Choden.

“The fire started from the roof,” Pema Choden said but added she had no clue on how the fire had started.

Police have however confirmed that the fire started from her house. “She had made a fire yesterday morning before she set out for farm work,” a police personnel said, adding eye witnesses also witnessed the fire starting from the roof area.

“Save for the clothes I am wearing, nothing could be retrieved,” Pema Choden said. “When I returned after the neighbours informed me, the whole house was on fire.”

Norbu who lived in an adjoining house also lost everything in the fire.

“By the time I got here from Gonphel village, everything was on fire impeding any effort to salvage anything,” Norbu said. Besides a cash of Nu 60,000-70,000, Norbu also lost a choesum, statues, a fridge and furniture.

Tshogpa Pema Tshering said by the time the fire brigade arrived, the fire in the two houses were too big to be contained.

“I managed to retrieve at least some ration, clothes and religious items,” another house owner Kencho Dorji said, adding he however lost some cash, blankets and mattress.

The Office of Gyalpo Zimpoen granted semso of Nu 10,000 each to five families and emergency kits. The DeSuung community in Bumthang has also committed to help the affected families build interim shelters within a week’s time. No casualties were reported.

By Tempa Wangdi, Bumthang