London: A 60-year-old Indian-origin British Sikh man was killed after his house was set on fire by an attacker, who has been arrested, in east London on Christmas Day.
Harbhajan Singh Rooprai was inside his home when 27-year-old Tyrone Jacobs allegedly set his home on fire, causing flames to be ripped through the terraced house in Forest Gate.
Rooprai died from burns and inhalation of fumes after he was found on the ground floor of the property.
Twenty-one firefighters and four engines tackled the blaze, which was brought under control after two-and-a-half hours.
Four people had managed to escape from the house before firefighters arrived.
Jacobs has been charged with murder and arson with intent to endanger life after the incident. He is due to appear at the Old Bailey court in London on March 21.
Another 32-year-old woman arrested on suspicion of murder has been bailed until mid-February.
Detective Chief Inspector Steve McCabe said: “Mr Rooprai’s family have been left devastated by what has happened and are struggling to come to terms with the loss.”
Rooprai’s relative Harjit said, “Words cannot express the pain and anguish of our family and friends have endured since the loss of our dear and loving uncle on Christmas Day”.
“We have been left devastated. The news will haunt us and we are still in disbelief that a member of our family has been so cruelly snatched away from us,” Harjit told the ‘Evening Standard’.