A couple was charred to death when a fire broke out in their room following an electric short circuit in the air-conditioning machine. Two including a fire fighter were injured while trying to put out the fire. The incident took place at Salkia in Howrah early on Thursday morning. Police said that the victim Shankar Das (27) and his wife Aripta Das (26) were deep in their sleep when the fire broke out. The flames spread fast before they could have realised that the fire had engulfed their room. Local people saw smoke billowing out of the portion of the air-conditioning machine which was outside the room and informed the other members of the family and the fire and emergency services department. Their neighbours initiated the rescue work. Fire fighters faced trouble in reaching the spot as the house is situated in a narrow lane. Three fire tenders were pressed into service to douse the flames. The fire fighters took around 40 minutes to extinguish the fire and to break into the room. The fire fighters found the charred bodies of the couple when they had managed to enter the room. A fire fighter Kaushik Das and Shankar’s brother Anjan Mallick were injured when they were working to douse the flames. They were admitted to Howrah District Hospital.