Mumbai: A vacation bench of the Bombay High Court on Wednesday granted bail to Ramesh Gowani and Ravi Bhandari, co-accused in the Kamala Mills fire case. Justice VL Achilya had heard extensive arguments from both sides on Tuesday after the Supreme Court directed the Bombay HC to expedite the hearing on the bail pleas. Gowani and Bhandari, co-owners of the Kamala Mills compound, were arrested and charged with culpable homicide, not amounting to murder, under the Indian Penal Code after 14 people died in a fire that broke out in two restaurants in the compound on December 29 last year.
They had sought bail on grounds that they were unaware of any breaches in fire safety compliance or other illegalities in One Above and Mojo Bistro restaurants where the incident occurred. The special public prosecutor in the case, Advocate Prakash Shetty, however opposed the bail pleas and argued that both the accused persons were aware of the illegal structural changes made at the concerned properties. A detailed order on the bail pleas is likely on Thursday.