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MC yet to conduct fire safety survey

Many factories, commercial units reportedly operating sans safety certificates

MC yet to conduct fire safety survey

The civic body started the fire safety audit in 2018, but it has not been completed so far. File



Tribune News Service

Harshraj Singh

Ludhiana, March 16

Even after a number of tragic fire incidents that took place in the city, MC has failed to carry out a survey to check fire safety arrangements in various factories, godowns, and other commercial establishments across the city.

After the hosiery factory fire incident wherein three workers died and two were injured on Tuesday, the questions are once again being raised that when the MC and its fire wing would carry out a survey to check violations in the factories and other buildings. As per the information, the hosiery unit had insufficient fire safety arrangements.

On November 20, 2017, a total of 16 persons including nine firefighters had lost their lives in the plastic manufacturing factory fire and collapse incident near Suffian Chowk, Ludhiana. Days after the tragedy, the then MC officials had announced to conduct a survey to check fire safety arrangements at factories and other buildings in the city but to no avail.

No fire safety audit has been conducted on the ground level to check the violations in the factories and many other commercial units in the city. As per sources a large number of factories and commercial establishments have not obtained fire safety certificates.

However, the MC had begun the fire safety audit to check fire safety arrangements at city hospitals in 2018 but it was not completed at that time as per the information.

The MC had prepared a report around five years ago and according to that report, less than 2 per cent of industries, commercial, educational, and other institutes running in the city had obtained fire safety certificates.

Chairman of the Indian Institute of Architects Punjab Chapter, Sanjay Goyal said, “It is estimated that the majority of the industries and other commercial establishments are not fulfilling the fire safety norms as per the national building code. The high-rise buildings are coming up in even narrow streets without ensuring fire safety norms. The MC should conduct a survey to check the fire safety arrangements in the buildings and act strictly against violations of fire safety norms.”

Despite repeated attempts, MC’s Zonal Commissioner Neeraj Jain, who looks after the fire services, could not be contacted for his comment.

Proposal sent to Local Govt Dept

An official of the MC said that the MC Commissioner recently sent a proposal letter to the Department of Local Government, requesting to make fire NOC (for fire safety) mandatory for electricity connection for commercial units. The PSPCL must take NOC (issued by Fire Brigade) from the commercial unit concerned before issuing any electricity connection to it, as per the proposal.

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