Indian fire-men are seen through the smoke after a fire raged through the Nayanagar slum in Mumbai on January 25, 2013. — Photo by AFP

MUMBAI: A fire killed six people when it ripped through a slum in the heart of Mumbai on Friday and left hundreds more homeless, emergency services said.

Twelve fire engines and 11 water tankers rushed to the tightly-packed Nayanagar slum in the Mahim neighbourhood after the blaze broke out shortly before daybreak, the Mumbai fire brigade said.

“In total six people were killed and three were injured,” assistant station officer Ishwar Kamble told AFP.

Around 150 of the slum dwellings had been destroyed by the blaze, he added.

The cause of the fire was not yet known.

Distraught residents could be seen searching through the charred rubble for their belongings, some of whom were weeping openly. The fire also destroyed several vehicles.

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