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Mundka fire toll likely to rise; hunt on for owner

After a horrific fire broke out in a building in Delhi’s Mundka locality, police confirmed the death of 27 people. The tragedy points to the lack of adherence to DFS laid out laws.

May 14, 2022 / 12:55 PM IST
Fire officials try to douse a fire in a four storied building, in New Delhi. Dozens of people have been rescued from the commercial building, mainly shops, in the Mundka area in the western part of New Delhi. (AP Photo/Manish Swarup)

Fire officials try to douse a fire in a four storied building, in New Delhi. Dozens of people have been rescued from the commercial building, mainly shops, in the Mundka area in the western part of New Delhi. (AP Photo/Manish Swarup)

Police confirmed the death of 27 people in the fire which broke out in Delhi’s Mundka locality, yesterday evening ; 12 people were also injured. The building’s owner Manish Lakra who inhabited the top floor is absconding.

As the search for the building’s owner continues Police informed the media that the building did not have a fire NOC.

Stating the progress of the rescue operation DCP Sameer Sharma (Outer District) told the media about the possibility of finding more bodies as the rescue continues.

Also Read | Mundka fire: Delhi CM announces compensation, orders inquiry

According to National Crime Records Bureau, NCRB, 163 people died in 2020 due to fires in commercial buildings while 5258 people died in residential buildings and 57 in government buildings.

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“We'll take the help of the forensic team to identify the bodies. FIR has been registered. We've detained company owners. There are chances that more bodies may be recovered as the rescue operation is yet to be completed," said DCP Sameer Sharma (Outer District)

Pointing at one of the hindrances to the rescue operation, the Divisional officer of the Fire Department, Satpal Bhardwaj stated that the four storey building had only one staircase.

“The building did not have proper NOC (from the fire department)," said Satpal Bhardwaj, Divisional Officer, Fire Department.

According to the Delhi Fire Service website all buildings covered under Rule 27 of Delhi Fire Services Rules 2010 will be required to have a Fire NOC. The rules specify that Business buildings having height more than 15 meters or having ground plus four upper stories including mezzanine floor ; Mercantile buildings having height more than 9 meters or having ground plus two upper stories including mezzanine floor and Industrial buildings having covered area on all floors more than 250 square meters.

The Delhi Fire Services, DFS, website says that NOC is required at two stages. The first requirement is at the first stage which is prior to construction of building wherein building plans are approved and fire safety recommendations are issued.

The second stage is after the construction of building before commencing of occupancy, when all the recommended fire and life safety measures have been provided/installed. These shall be verified and Fire Safety Certificate (FSC) shall be issued.

A preliminary enquiry confirmed that the Mundka building was used for providing enterprises with office spaces. The fire seems to have spread from an office space on the first floor from which a CCTV and Router manufacturing company was operating.



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first published: May 14, 2022 12:55 pm
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