Three persons, who were arrested yesterday in connection with the fire at a pub in the Kamla Mills Compound here that claimed 14 lives, have been sent in police custody till January 25. The N M Joshi Marg police had last evening arrested Ravi Bhandari, a partner in the Kamla Mills, station fire officer Rajendra Patil, and Utkarsh Pandey, the owner of the Nirvana Hookah, in connection with the incident. The three were produced this afternoon before the Bhoiwada court which remanded them in police custody till January 25, senior police inspector Ahmed Pathan said. The arrests were made last evening after Brihanmumbai Municipal Commissioner Ajoy Mehta submitted his report to the chief minister in which he mentioned factors which caused the tragedy last month. The owners of the ‘1 Above’ pub, Jigar Sanghvi, Kripesh Sanghvi and Abhijit Mankar, as well as owners of the adjoining ‘Mojo’s Bistro’, Yug Pathak and Yug Tulli, are already arrested. According to the enquiry report submitted by Mehta, the fire on December 29 started because of the flying charcoal embers from hookah which was illegally served at Mojo’s Bistro.
It then spread to 1 Above. Most of the deceased were visiting 1 Above. The owners of both the pubs were booked for ‘culpable homicide not amounting to murder’ and other offences under the Indian Penal Code. The municipal commissioner’s report said the owners of Kamla Mills allowed illegal alterations and usage of terrace by the two pubs. It also said that a departmental inquiry will be conducted against some fire brigade officials for lapses in duty.