Fire dept., BMC probe fire cause, politicos make rounds of site


The Brihanmumbai Municipal Corporation (BMC) on Saturday targeted encroached structures built by restaurants and pubs at Kamla Mills compound, Raghuvanshi Mills compound and Phoenix mall premises.

On December 18, at least 12 workers were killed and one injured when a massive fire broke out at a snack shop in Sakinaka-Kurla area in Mumbai.

Delhi Fire Service (DFS) officials said that according to the law, eateries with a seating capacity of less than 50 do not need a no-objection certificate (NOC) from the police and fire departments.

Mumbai Regional Congress Committee president and former MP Sanjay Nirupam said MLA Sudhakar Deshmukh had pressurised local ward officers to grant permissions to 1 Above and Mojo's Bistro.

In addition, the BMC sealed 9,000 sq ft terrace of Sheesha Sky Lounge at Andheri, by demolishing an illegal construction erected on the top.

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Speaking to reporters after visiting the building in Kamala Mill compound in Lower Parel where the tragedy took place past midnight, Fadnavis said he had ordered a safety audit of all such structures in the city.

Civic authorities mentioned that officials failed to fulfil their duty, and thus, were suspended.

In fact, the preliminary inspection by the BMC on Friday detected an unauthorized partition wall and two rooms, besides an illegal plastic roof supported with bamboos which was reduced to ashes in the early Friday morning blaze. "They have been granted bail by a court", the official said. "We are asking managers or owners of such properties to remove it on their own or else we will bring it down", BMC spokesperson Ram Dotonde said.

A number of fires occurred in eateries and buildings in India past year mainly due to lack of regards for safety norms and fire-fighting equipment, like hosepipes and alarm systems.

The restaurants have been sealed as they were found violating the health department and fire safety norms. My thoughts are with the bereaved families in this hour of grief. Strict action will be taken wherever negligence is made.