Tilak Nagar fire: Despite Poonam Mahajan’s intervention, society had no fire safety unit

Mumbai: It hascome to light, four months before a fire gutted Sargam Society, at Tilak Nagaron Thursday, Member of Parliament (MP) Poonam Mahajan had written a letter tothe Chief Minister highlighting lack of fire safety units in the building. Fivepeople died and two injured, including a fireman. Due to the non-compliance offire safety measures, residents of this building have still not been given theOccupancy Certificate (OC) and Commencement Certificate (CC) by BrihamumbaiMunicipal Corporation (BMC).

The residents claimed the builder kept delayed giving OC tothem. Moreover, the builder had not even given the possession letter toresidents living above the ninth floor this society. The residents of thebuilding complained the builder, Hemendrabhai Mapara of Reliance Realtors,never took interest in fitting the fire fighting units in the residentialbuilding. A resident, Sumedh Kadam said, “We had purchased seven fireextinguishers at our expense, which was to be supplied by the builder. We alsoconstructed a emergency exit after spending Rs 70,000 for joining the A and Bwing. In fact the residents living above eleventh floor could be evacuated onlybecause of this emergency exit.”

R A Choudhary, Deputy Chief Fire Officer (Technical), saidthe cause of fire seems to be decorations near the Christmas tree, whichtriggered from the flat 1101. Primary information indicates, a candle was litnear the decorated Christmas tree which was caught in flames and the firespread wildly due to the wind, curtains and was spread to adjacent flatsthrough wiring.

Choudhary said, “Prima facie the cause of fire isascertained to be a Christmas tree, in the house of S Meghpuria. However theinvestigation is still underway. A thorough probe will be conducted toascertain the cause of fire.” Speaking to The Free Press Journal, Meghpuria,owner of flat 1101 said the fire had in fact begun from 14th floor. “We had decoratedthe Christmas tree and left it, because we had to go out for a function toThane. We were not in the house when the fire erupted. The fire did not startin our apartment, it began from the 14th floor. The fire officials need toascertain the facts,” said Meghpuria.

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