The Mumbai Fire Brigade has initiated the process of prosecuting three high-rises in South Mumbai which failed to compile and put in place fire safety measures that it advised in the buildings.
The three high-rises in question Anand Darshan on Peddar Road, Thakker Tower in Malbar Hill and Earth Sampat in Girgaum.
Chief fire officer Suhas Joshi confirmed the initiation of the prosecution.
This is the first time that the fire brigade has resorted to such a step since the Maharashtra Fire
Prevention & Life Safety Measure Act, 2009 came into force in 2010.
According to the Act, buildings with more than seven floors must install a well equipped fire-fighting system; every housing society must conduct a fire safety audit on its own and submit certificates to the fire brigade every six months to show that they comply with fire safety measures in the building.
“These high-rises were sent notices about when they will be inspected. After the inspections, we gave them details of fire safety measures they must take up within 120 days. But as they failed to comply with them within the given time, we initiated the prosecution process,” a senior fire official said.
The official assured that this was not meant to scare residents of the three buildings, but was only to ensure that they adhere to fire safety norms. He also said that the fire brigade does not enough manpower to inspect high rises.
Moreover, conservation architect Abha Lambah said, “Where fire safety is concerned, we tend to take things casually. But if we look around, we may find half the building ill-equipped to fight fire. It is time we be firm about it.”