For the first time in 125 years, the fire department has given firemen and drivers fabric from a brand as high-end as Raymond for their uniforms; firemen, however, complain that the amount allotted to get the uniforms stitched is paltry compared to the cost they’ll incur
For the first time in its 125-year history, the fire department has given fabric from a company as high-end as Raymond to its firemen and drivers. While the firemen are happy with this move, they complain that they have been allotted a paltry amount to get the uniforms stitched.
Each fireman has been given 10.10 metres of cloth, 7.10 of which is of a special fire-fighting fabric for coats, trousers and caps and 3 metres of normal fabric for shirts. The market price of the 10.10 metres of cloth is Rs 6,462 and the department has procured approximately 25,250 metres for its 2,500 firemen.
The cloth given to each fireman is meant to suffice for two sets of uniforms. The uniforms consist of a coat, a shirt, one pair of trousers, and a cap, and fireman say that getting each set stitched will cost them nearly R2,500. They complain that the department has allotted roughly one-fourth of this Rs 640 for fireman and Rs 670 for drivers as the stitching cost per pair.
“For the past several years, the department has been giving us pre-stitched uniforms through a contractor. This time, however, we have been given 10.10 metres of cloth which will suffice for two sets of uniforms. The cloth was given to us 10 days ago,” said a fireman, on condition of anonymity. “While the cloth is of high quality, the stitching cost will set us back by quite a lot.
Going by the market prices of Rs 250 for a pair of trousers, Rs 2,000 for a coat, Rs 200 for a shirt and Rs 50 for a cap, getting each uniform stitched will cost nearly R2,500. The department, however, will give us just Rs 640 per uniform.” A fireman’s union, Mumbai Agnishaman Dal Ladhau Kamgar Sanghatana, has also written a letter to the fire department highlighting the issue.
The other side
Chief Fire Officer Sunil Nesarikar said, “If the firemen get the clothes stitched as a group, the amount allotted by the department will be enough.”