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Last Updated: Sunday, 17 December 2006, 18:43 GMT
Fire burns down city curry house
Cafe India fire, picture by Donald Leggate
Shoppers and drivers stopped to watch the flames of the fire
A fire in an Indian restaurant brought part of Glasgow city centre to a standstill.

No-one was injured as a result of the blaze at Cafe India, which was not open for business at the time.

Crowds of shoppers gathered to watch the huge plumes of smoke coming from the well-known North Street premises on Sunday afternoon.

Strathclyde Police closed the road as the roof and parts of the building's facade collapsed.

Eight firefighting crews, including three high-reach units, and a police helicopter were called to the scene at about 1500 GMT.

There was no roof left and the whole of the inside was in flames
Eye witness

The restaurant is next to a backpackers' hostel amid a row of shops and near the city's Mitchell Library which is Europe's largest public reference library.

One eyewitness said the fire was fiercely raging inside the single-storey restaurant.

He said: "There was no roof left and the whole of the inside was in flames.

"It looks like it has been totally gutted."

Up to 40 firefighters, many wearing breathing equipment, fought for more than two hours to control the blaze and protect neighbouring properties.

Dozens of calls

By 1730 GMT, Strathclyde Fire and Rescue said the fire was under control, enabling an investigation to be launched into its cause.

Strathclyde Police officers, who were out in force at the incident, are understood to have started interviewing workers at the restaurant.

It is not yet known how badly neighbouring properties have been affected.

Strathclyde Fire and Rescue said it received dozens of calls reporting the fire when it started.

A spokesman said: "It is likely that Strathclyde Fire and Rescue will be in attendance at this incident for some considerable time.

"The cause of the fire will be the subject of an investigation by Strathclyde Fire and Rescue and Strathclyde Police."


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