The swimming pool at the Antop Hill command centre of the Mumbai fire brigade had been lying unused since the time it was inaugurated on November 15, 2011

Mumbai : Additional municipal commissioner Manisha Mhaiskar said on Monday that the swimming pool to train firemen would be in working condition in two weeks.

FPJ had reported last month that the swimming pool at the Antop Hill command centre of the
Mumbai fire brigade had been
lying unused since the time it was inaugurated on November 15, 2011. No less a person than Shiv Sena chief Uddhav Thackeray had inaugurated it. According to deputy chief fire officer Shashikant Kale, the pool could not be used because they had no maintenance staff for it.
This is the only exclusive swimming pool to train firemen. It is important for the firemen to know swimming as nearly 200 people had drowned in the Mumbai deluge of July 26, 2005. In fact, this was the rationale for the Antop Hill swimming pool.
When FPJ first spoke to Mhaiskar about this, she passed on the buck to the gardens
department. The gardens department passed it on to joint municipal commissioner S S Shinde who passed it to deputy municipal commissioner Ramesh Pawar. Pawar said the chief fire officer Suhas Joshi was to blame. Joshi blamed Kale.
Finally, FPJ took up the issue with municipal commissioner Sitaram Kunte had promised to look into the issue, as did mayor Sunil Prabhu.
On Monday, Kale said he had been given four persons from the civic swimming pool at Chembur to maintain the Antop Hill pool. However, he added that he would need an annual fund of Rs 10 lakh for the chemicals and other material to keep the pool clean. He said that the funds would have to be approved by the civic standing committee. “I cannot say when the swimming pool will be operational,’’
he said.

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