At least 16 shops were gutted when a fire broke out in Tirora city of Maharashtra's Gondia district in the early hours of Thursday, police said. No casualty was reported in the mishap, they said. The blaze erupted around 3 am in one of the shops located on the Tirora railway station road and soon spread to other commercial establishments, assistant police inspector Kailash Gavte said. Some gas cylinders kept at one of the shops engaged in welding work exploded following the fire, the police said, adding that residents of nearby areas got up in panic after hearing the loud sounds. "In all, 16 shops of fruits, utensils, cycles, cloth, decorative items and welding work were destroyed in the fire. There was no casualty," he said. On getting information, fire fighting teams of the Tirora Municipal Council and Adani Power Maharashtra Limited's local plant rushed to the site and took over an hour to bring the flames under control, he said. The cause of the fire was yet to be ascertained, he added.All the damaged shops were set up on an encroached land, a source said. Local BJP MLA Vijay Rahangdale, civic chief Sonali Deshpande and tehsilder Sanjay Ramteke visited the site and assured all help to the affected shop-keepers. Rahangdale asked the civic authorities to set up a commercial complex in the area to prevent shop-keepers from encroaching land to run their businesses.