A hotel in New Delhi went up in flames in the early hours of Tuesday morning, reportedly killing at least nine people and critically injuring eight others.

The fire started around 4:30 a.m. local time (6 p.m. EST Monday) at Hotel Arpit Palace, located in the Karol Bagh area of India's capital city. Smoke was seen coming out of the building as 26 fire engines responded to the spot and battled the blaze.

According to deputy chief fire officer Sunil Choudhary, the fire resulted in a situation of chaos inside the building which led some people, believed to be hotel staff, to jump from open windows and others to resort to measures like breaking glass panes to let out smoke, the Times Of Indiareported.

After almost half an hour of fighting the fire, emergency workers were able to douse the flames. However, the scene remained an active one as firefighters continued the search and rescue operations. Choudhary said the crews were working on recovering bodies of the dead from the 40-room building. He refused to confirm a death toll but eight bodies had been recovered from the building, which was still being combed by the fire crews for people who might have been trapped inside during the fire and were unaccounted for.

According to media reports, the dead included seven men, a woman and a child.

The total number of injured was not confirmed by the authorities either, but several people were transported to nearby hospitals for treatment.

"The fire has been doused. We have to look for bodies, if any, inside the hotel. Those injured have been sent to hospital. Two hotel staff members had jumped from the fourth floor of the hotel in an attempt to save themselves. The status of the staff who jumped is yet to be known,” Choudhary told local news agency ANI.

Although the cause of the fire was still under investigation, it was believed to have been started by an electrical short circuit.

Fire A hotel in New Delhi went up in flames, leading to over a dozen casualties. In this photo, Delhi Fire Service (DFS) personnel extinguish a fire at one of the exhibition halls of the Paragti Maidan exhibition center in New Delhi, July 29, 2008. Photo: Prakash Singh/AFP/Getty Images