Lucknow, Jan 14 : Four contractual employees working as electricians died of suspected asphyxiation in a hotel here, an official said today.
Prima facie it seemed that they had died yesterday because of inhaling carbon monoxide, as they had kept burning coal in a glass cabin at the basement of the building in Vihuti Khand area to fight intense cold, a police spokesman said.
The deceased were identified as Mohamed Saeed (29), Mohammed Nihal (30), Ram Kumar (30) and Ram Naresh (32) - all residents of Lucknow.
The police said that the hotel's watchman Shailendra went to the basement and found the victims sleeping. He called them a number of times and then opened the cabin door to wake them up.
The watchman grew suspicious when they did not respond and informed the hotel manager, who went to the basement and found them lying unconscious.
The four people were rushed to RML Hospital where doctors declared them brought dead.
District Magistrate Kaushal Raj Sharma said, "Rs 50,000 in cash and a cheque of the same amount has been given to the family of the deceased."
Sharma said the labour department has served a notice on the hotel owner to give compensation to the families of the deceased.
"An FIR has been registered against the hotel management. Investigations will reveal whether the deaths were caused due to smoke or if any criminal angle was involved," Sharma said.