Guest houses or hotels run in small buildings in the Karolbagh area of Delhi. Most of these do not even have permission to run hotels by valid rules. Most of these buildings do not follow the rules on the basis of which hotels or banquet halls can be opened.
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As the municipal corporations are busy demolishing illegal buildings with bulldozers, in the meantime such a sad proof of the corruption of the municipal officials has come to the fore, due to which the 27 families of Delhi are forever in darkness. A fire broke out in a four-storey building in Delhi’s Mundka area on Friday evening, killing 27 people. Similarly, 17 people died in Karol Bagh’s Arpit Palace fire and 43 people died in Anaj Mandi fire.
The only negligence that emerged in all these accidents was that there was no alternate route of evacuation in case of an accident in all these buildings. Due to this, people could not get out of the buildings when the fire broke out and they died due to burns. In every accident, the fact has also come to the fore that most of the people do not die due to scorching in the fire, but due to suffocation in the smoke. If there was an alternate exit route to these buildings, all of their lives could have been saved. After every accident, the buildings are told to follow all the rules, but after a short time everything is forgotten and a new accident awaits.
Guest houses or hotels run in small buildings in the Karolbagh area of Delhi. Most of these do not even have permission to run hotels by valid rules. Most of these buildings do not follow the rules on the basis of which hotels or banquet halls can be opened. But by taking advantage of the corruption in the municipal corporations, these hotels keep running and playing with the lives of the people by bribing the officials.
Since, after such incidents no municipal officer or fire department official has been punished so far, this game of death continues unabated. Violence of rules was also found in the Arpit Hotel fire incident, but after that no concrete action was taken against any hotel.
grain market death
The worst fire incident in Delhi’s Anaj Mandi in recent years took place on 8 December 2019. Small works like making bags, shoes, belts used to be done in this building. After working, the workers used to eat and drink on the top floor of the same building. Even on the night of the incident, all the workers had slept after doing their work, which proved to be the last night of their lives. The fire broke out on the first floor of the building and the workers ran to the top floor to escape. There was only one way out of the building and the fire started around it.
Since the building used to make bag-belts, plastic, paper goods used in its construction were kept in large quantities in the building. As the fire blazed, these items caught fire rapidly and the fire spread. Hazardous gases started coming out due to the fire in the plastic and the workers trapped on the upper floor suffocated. The top floor of the building was locked and there was no way to get out to the terrace. The workers did try to break the windows, but they could not break them because of the iron rods on them.
After the incident, it was revealed in the investigation that most of the workers died due to suffocation. If the door from the upper floor to the roof had not been closed, if there had been an alternate route for an emergency, the lives of these people could have been saved.
Same story in Arpit Hotel fire
The same negligence was also revealed in the Arpit Hotel fire incident (12 February 2019) of Karolbagh. On the upper floor of the hotel there was a cooking arrangement. As a rule, there should be a separate arrangement for cooking food in such buildings, where there should be adequate security arrangements. It is said that in the event of a fire in this hotel, there was no arrangement to deal with it. The fire broke out in the upper floor of the hotel and suddenly reached the bottom. There was only one way out of the hotel, but after the fire there was no one out. Out had got.
To escape, people tried to save their lives by getting down with sheets or jumping from the upper floors, but most of them died. There was not even a rope system in the hotel, by which people could come down and save their lives. Because of this people were dying one by one.
The fire brigade vehicles that reached the spot after getting information about the fire took longer time to reach there as there was no cut at a suitable place for the route from the main road to the spot. The matter did not end here, the fire department vehicles that reached the spot did not even have such high stairs, which could reach the top floor of the hotel and save lives. By the time all arrangements were made, 17 people had lost their lives.
Same negligence in Mundka
The same negligence is coming to the fore in the Mundka fire which was seen in other fires in Delhi. Some of the major reasons that have come up so far are as follows-
- The building did not even have a no-objection certificate from the fire department.
- There was no alternate exit in the building so that people could escape and save their lives.
- There was no arrangement of ladder or rope to get out of the building.
- Fire extinguishers were also not available in the building.
- There were inflammable substances kept in the building. The kind of precautions that should have been taken in handling such substances were not taken.
When will the rules be followed?
At present, the Municipal Corporation is continuously vandalizing illegal areas of Delhi with its bulldozers. It is also being strongly opposed because a section alleges that politics is being done on the pretext of bulldozers, a particular class is being targeted. If the Municipal Corporation could put an end to its corruption, it could work by giving priority to the interest of the people instead of taking political action, then perhaps the lives of those who lost their lives in such accidents could have been saved. But the history till now does not assure people that such an incident will not happen again.