A terrified teenager plunged to her death from a fourth floor window in front of her distraught family as she lost her grip while trying to escape a fire raging in her bedroom.
Horrified onlookers said the young girl, wearing just her underwear, was clinging on outside her window screaming for help as the inferno raged inside.
One witness claimed she had tried to climb out using a blanket or rope on to the balcony on the floor below, but was forced to let go after her hair and the rope caught fire.
Next door neighbour Shopba Begum, 36, described the teen she believed was attending sixth form college as a lovely person.
She said she was woken at 5.30am by someone knocking on her door warning of the blaze and by the time she had got her children out Meilan had already fallen from her fourth floor bedroom window.
Neighbour Hasnat Chowdhury, 35, added: I have lived in this property for the last three years and I have seen her every day.
She was a nice girl who always said hi, how are you doing today.
It’s absolutely tragic.
Floral tributes and balloons left outside the burnt-out flat describe the teen as beautiful young woman with her whole life ahead of her.
One reads: “Meilan, I miss you already. I can’t believe you’re gone. I love you so much and I’m gonna miss all the laughs we had together. I hope you rest in perfect paradise beautiful.
You was such an inspiring young lady that had her whole life in front of her. You will be forever missed.
Another reads: Such a special friend with a heart of pure gold.
You were such a beautiful young woman.
Mourners seen arriving with bouquets of flowers were too upset to comment at a block of flats where a 17-year-old girl fell to her death on Monday morning.
Locals have said the incident has left the community in shock.
Alex Robertson, 18, from Mile End, said the teen was screaming for help out of her window after the blaze reportedly broke out in her bedroom.
He said: She was hanging off the railings shouting help but she lost her grip and just gave up.
Speaking from the scene Mile End ward councillor Shah Alam said: “It is very sad. The community is really shocked.
Now everyday we have some sad news in London. I want to make sure every resident has proper fire safety fire blankets and smoke alarms.
Flats above a parade of shops in Mile End, East London, were evacuated after the fire broke out yesterday morning at around 5.30am.
The 17-year-old girl’s mother, father and younger brother reportedly escaped unharmed, but their daughter was trapped in her bedroom.
Eyewitness Helal Miah, 41, who lives in a building nearby off St Paul’s Way, said he was woken at 5am by sounds of screaming.
He said: It was very traumatic. I was awoken at about 5.30am and could hear screaming and people being evacuated.
I ran downstairs and saw the fire. By then the brigade were on the scene.
The young girl was trying to escape because her bedroom was on fire – she was on the window ledge.
I think she was trying to make some form of rope to climb down.
I think her hair and the cloth she was holding caught fire. She had no choice but to jump and she died on the spot.
Her parents were sitting on the bench right outside.
We were telling her not to jump, saying don’t jump help is on the way, but the fire was so fierce it caught fire to her hair and clothes.
It was absolutely awful.
He said police and residents were rushing to evacuate the building as the drama unfolded.
People tried to catch her but were unable to break her fall, he said.
They are really nice family, they have lived here for a few years, he added.
We used to see the girl and her family here all the time.
They were traumatised. The police shielded them. They must have seen her let go.
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