A day after a devastating blaze at a central Mumbai pub claimed 14 lives, fire brigade officials on Saturday said it was probing whether flames during a fire stunt by a bartender, burning coal used for hookah or a short circuit led to the tragedy. The fire had started after 12.30 am on Friday at the ‘One Above’ pub on the terrace of Trade House Building in Kamala Mills compound in Lower Parel, which led to the collapse of its bamboo-propped canopy.
The fire spread rapidly engulfing Mojo’s Bistro, a storey below. Most of the 14 victims died of asphyxiation. As the horrifying events of the fire tragedy in Mumbai’s Kamala Mills unfolded, civic authorities in other metro cities such as Delhi and Bengaluru have sprung into action and are currently reviewing the safety measures around crowded marketplaces and eateries.
After the tragedy at Mumbai’s Kamala Mills, DG of Police in Karnataka M N Reddi has directed fire officers in Bengaluru to ‘check unauthorised high-rise buildings with terrace pubs/restaurants and issue notices to set right the fire safety measures or face action.
Directed Fire officers in Bengaluru today to check unauthorised high rise buildings with terrace pubs/restaurants and issue notices to set right fire safety measures or face action.
— M.N.Reddi, IPS (@DGP_FIRE) December 29, 2017
Delhi’s Chief Fire Officer GC Mishra on Saturday said, “According to National Building Code only buildings with 50 seats or more are under legal obligation to get NOC from fire brigade. In congested localities like Hauz Khas, Khan Market, GK, Rajouri, the licenced eateries seat less than 48 people so they are under no legal obligation to obtain an NOC.”
ANI quoted Delhi’s fire Chief as saying, “All offices of Delhi Fire Service have been asked to carry out inspection/visit at restaurants in their respective area, especially in crowded places.”
To have a fire clearance, an establishment needs fire exits with doors more than two metres wide, a clear pathway, smoke vents and tanks or pumps for emergency water requirement. The markets at Hauz Khas and Khan Market have several bars and restaurants mostly with inadequate fire exits, most cite the 50 seater rule to skirt the issue.
As many as 12 pubs at the Hauz Khas Village were closed four months ago by the SDMC and the Delhi Pollution Control Committee for violating fire and environmental norms.
Shops in the Defence Colony had been forcefully closed down last week citing safety issues. According to the MCD officials, there were unauthorised constructions which posed serious security risks to the visitors in the area.
Expecting a large number of people in pubs and clubs on December 31, Delhi Commissioner of Police issued security measures to be followed.” We expect a large number of people will be visiting eateries & pubs on 31st Dec. Keeping in view what happened in Mumbai, we have to be extra cautious. We are intimating all outlets to take extra precautions,” he said in a quote to ANI.
NDMC Chairman Naresh Kumar called an emergent meeting of all traders associations Saturday under his jurisdiction and asked them to comply with safety measures. He asked restaurants in its area to abide by trade license conditions, fire safety norms and sitting capacity regulations or be ready to face cancellation of permits and sealing of premises.
The Haryana government directed fire officers to conduct surprise inspections at various places in Gurugram in order to prevent any fire incidents on the new years eve. In compliance with the directions of the Haryana minister Kavita Jain, fire department officers have constituted three teams for conducting inspections to inspect five-star hotels, cyber hub and remaining hotels.
Goa, as expected, will be flooded with people on New Year. Deputy Superintendent of Police Kiran Poduval has deployed police for the entire night in vulnerable points for the security and safety of patrons.