At a time when celebrations for the Vijaya Dashmi festival was on, a major fire gutted at least 50 hutments in the Meenatai Thackeray slum in Gultekdi area Thursday. No casualty was reported in the incident. Residents in the 50 hutments that caught fire were left homeless as their belongings turned into ashes on the festive day. There was a blast in three domestic LPG cylinders, causing a major panic in the area. A major tragedy was averted as residents shifted the LPG cylinders in other houses to safe places quickly, sources said.
A fire was reported in the slum around 4 pm Thursday. On receiving the information, a fire brigade team reached the spot. Also, the police teams rushed to the spot for controlling the law and order situation.
As many as 12 fire tankers were pressed into service with water tankers and other equipment. The firemen had difficulty in reaching the hutments as they were located in a congested area of the slums, but they climbed the roofs and extinguished the fire. Chief fire officer Prashant Ranpise visited the spot for monitoring the situation. Firemen brought the situation under control by 6 pm.
Dattatraya Dhankawade, Pune mayor visited the slum and interacted with victims. Arrangements for their stay were made in PMC-run Santa Namdev and Sant Dnyaneshwar schools.
The cause of fire is not known yet.