To inculcate a sense of fire safety among the city residents during the ongoing National Fire Service Week (April14-20), the Municipal Corporation (MC) has started a safety awareness campaign, said Mayor Poonam Sharma while addressing the gathering at a function organised by the Corporation on Tuesday to pay homage to firemen who died on duty.
Meanwhile, two firemen from Chandigarh were among the three firemen named in a list of martyrs released by the Ministry of Home Affairs ahead of the National Fire Service Day, said Sharma.
Ravinder Kumar Sharma, leading hand fireman of the Indian Air Force posted at 3 BRD, and MC fireman Amandeep Singh, both of whom died in the NIELET building collapse last year, have been declared martyrs, along with Abdul Qayoom Hajam, a fireman in J&K fire and emergency services, according to a list released by the Ministry of Home Affairs.
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On Republic Day this year, Sharma received a posthumous Vayu Sena Medal, while Amandeep received the President’s medal for gallantry.
The family of Amarjit Singh Mavi, an MC fireman who died in a fire-fighting operation in 2008, was also honoured during the function on Tuesday. Sharma and families of deceased firemen also laid wreaths at the martyrs’ column in the Sector 17 fire station to pay homage to those who died on duty. A two-minute silence was also observed in their memory.
During the event, Mayor Poonam Sharma appreciated the firemen for their valour and duty. “I salute all employees of the MC fire and emergency services who have shown consistent dedication towards work and risk their lives daily to protect the residents. Among other things, I will soon call a meeting of the families of all firemen so that they can get to know each other better.”
She added that a survey of fire safety measures in various buildings will be initiated and expert advice will be given on measures to be taken for ensuring fire safety. An awareness campaign will also be started in schools, she said.
April 14 has been observed throughout the country as Fire Service Day since 1944, when a huge fire in Mumbai claimed the lives of 500 persons, including 66 fire-fighters.