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Representational Image Reuters

A major fire broke out in the building of the Civil Secretariat premises of Jammu and Kashmir this morning. The two-storeyed building was engulfed in flames, destroying many crucial department records.

"We've had a fire in the annexe of the Sectt housing the offices of technical education, higher education, forest, accounts and treasuries," J&K Chief Minister Omar Abdullah said on micro-blogging site Twitter.

The incident took place just minutes before the offices were opened at 9.30 am. The fire broke out in the wooden structure adjacent to the main building of Civil Secretariat. It took nearly two hours for rescue services to contain the fire at the annexe that houses offices of Higher Education Department, the Direct of Treasury and Accounts among others.

Authorities are yet to determine the cause of the incident. "The cause of the fire & the extent of the damage, particularly of records stored in these offices will take some time to assess #Srinagar," Abdullah said in another tweet.

There have been no casualties reported so far but the records in the building may have been completely destroyed. All the 3,000 employees of the Secretariat are asked to stay away from the premises until an investigation is complete.  

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