Maharashtra Chief Minister Devendra Fadnavis today promised action against errant civic officials and the owners of a pub in central Mumbai where a massive fire claimed 14 lives. Speaking to reporters after visiting the building in Kamala Mill Compound in Lower Parel where the tragedy took place past midnight, Fadnavis said he had ordered safety audit of all such structures in the city. Officials have also been directed to demolish illegal structures, he added. Fadnavis said he has asked the Brihanmumbai Municipal Commissioner to hold an enquiry and submit a report within 15 days. “Five (civic) officials have already been suspended and appropriate sections of the Indian Penal Code will be invoked against the owners of the pub, making them responsible for the loss of lives. The guilty won’t be spared,” Fadnavis said.
Earlier, the chief minister tweeted: “Disturbing to know about the loss of lives in unfortunate Kamala Mills fire incident in Mumbai. My thoughts are with the families who lost their loved ones and prayers for the speedy recovery of the injured. Directed the BMC Commissioner to conduct an in-depth enquiry.” In another tweet, Fadnavis said he has directed BMC commissioner Ajoy Mehta to take strong action against erring officials immediately. Maharashtra Governor Ch Vidyasagar Rao expressed shock at the loss of innocent lives.
“The incident of blaze was shocking. I convey my heartfelt condolences to the kin of the innocent people who lost their lives in the unfortunate incident. I wish speedy recovery to the injured,” the governor said in his message. The fire, which also left 21 people injured, started after 12.30 am at the ‘1 Above’ pub and quickly spread to ‘Mojo Bistro’ pub on the third floor, according to civic officials.