Chandigarh, October 3
Having found violations of various fire safety norms at the furniture factory, Shyamji Trading Company, which was gutted in a major fire at Industrial Area, Phase II, yesterday, the Municipal Corporation has issued a notice to the owner. He has not obtained No Objection Certificate (NOC) from the Fire Department.
Officials in the MC said after evaluation, a fine will also be imposed on the firm. A fire safety team today inspected the factory to prepare a report.
“There was no proper ventilation inside the factory. The tin shed put up on the first floor was completely covered. There was no ventilation that might led to deaths due to asphyxiation. The passage to the factory was blocked with goods, which is also a violations of fire safety norms. It all hindered firefighting operation during the mishap. However, they did have fire extinguishers, but those were only first aid kind of equipment,” said a fire official.
Six fire engines were pressed into service that made 50 rounds filling water during the firefighting operations. The fire had also spread to the adjoining factory. However, firemen acted swiftly to prevent the fire from turning into a tragedy.
Meanwhile, Subhash Mittal, owner of the ill-fated Shyamji Trading Company, was unavailable for comment. His phone was picked by one of the members of his staff who refused to put him on the line.
MC Commissioner Anindita Mitra confirmed the notice had been issued to the factory for not obtaining a fire NOC and other violations. She said a fine would also be imposed on the owner.
President, Chandigarh Industrial Association, MPS Chawla has requested the MC to make NOCs business-friendly. He also sought to give a provisional NOC to industries as an emergency measure, so that they could buy important firefighting equipment.
Batra Breweries penalised earlier
This is not the first time that the civic body has taken stringent action against those not following the fire safety norms. The MC had earlier issued notice to Batra Breweries and Distilleries Private Limited in Industrial Area, Phase I, where a major fire broke out in October last year, for not obtaining an NOC and imposed a fine of Rs 50,000 on it. However, the firm continued with its operations despite the notice before the fire broke out at the unit, said officials.
In July this year, the police had registered a case against a factory owner and the tenant under Section 304-A (causing death by negligence) of the Indian Penal Code at the Sector 31 police station after two girls died of asphyxiation and three persons were injured when a fire broke out in the basement of Vishav Electricals, an electrical parts manufacturing unit, in Industrial Area, Phase II.
What officials noticed
- There was no proper ventilation at the factory
- The tin shed put up on the first floor was completely covered
- The passage to the factory was blocked with goods
- It did have fire extinguishers, but those were only first-aid kind of equipment
Owner’s brother Swachhta brand ambassador
Owner of Shyamji Trading Company is brother of devotional singer Kanhiya Mittal, who was made a brand ambassador for the Swachh Survekshan-2023 campaign last year by the corporation.
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