Too many, too late: BMC razes over 900 structures in 2 weeks

Too many, too late: BMC razes over 900 structures in 2 weeks
Demolition drive at Kamala Mills following the pub fire (Courtesy: Scroll.in)

The BMC, in its biggest drive against illegal constructions in the city, has managed to raze well over 900 hazardous or unauthorised structures in the two week period following the Kamala Mills tragedy.

“The demolished structures include hotels, restaurants, pubs, bakeries, big and small eateries and places where bulk foods are prepared across the city,” said an official spokesperson for the BrihanMumbai Municipal Corporation (BMC).

In the ongoing action on Friday, the demolition squads sealed eight establishments not complying with fire safety norms, seized 197 gas cylinders, demolished illegal constructions at 52 places and warned 271 others to make the requisite change immediately.

Since December 30 till January 12, the BMC has inspected 2,568 establishments from the fire safety perspective and seized a whopping 1,410 gas cylinders.

The Corporation has issued notices to 718 establishments to carry out necessary fire safety amendments since the tragedy.

The total number of establishments sealed for large-scale irregularities including non-compliance of fire norms has now touched 55, including the eight shut on Friday.

The 52 BMC teams set up for the purpose in 24 divisions include personnel of the Mumbai Fire Brigade, Health Department, Building & Factory Department, who scrutinize construction-related works, entrances-exists, open spaces, etc., and break down illegal doors within the premises.

The BMC’s massive drive, termed as ‘belated’ by some, came after a raging inferno in two rooftop pubs, Mojo’s Bistro and 1Above restaurants, in the Kamala Mills Compound in Lower Parel killed 14 patrons and injured another 50.

In a related incident, Maharashtra Congress’s Leader of Opposition Radhakrishna Vikhe-Patil on Friday demanded a probe by the CBI into the pub blaze and suspension of BMC Commissioner Ajoy Mehta.

He said a Congress delegation would call on Governor C.V. Rao seeking a CBI probe and suspension of Mehta, failing which he would file a petition in the Bombay High Court.

With IANS inputs

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