The next time there is a fire in or around the Pune Municipal Corporation (PMC) building, the situation might be professionally tackled, as the authority has finally kicked off its ambitious fire and disaster management project. Meant to protect the main building from disasters, the Rs 85 lakh project was languishing for almost a year along with the funds lying unused.

MiD DAY had reported about how corporators had raised the issue of non-implementation of the fire security project in the backdrop of a fire in its main parking lot. The project includes advanced fire sensors and other equipment to be fitted inside the main building and installing water sprinklers and fire extinguishers in its two main parking lots. The works in the parking lots also includes building a network of underground pipelines and other disaster management infrastructure.

Pravin Ashitkar, deputy commissioner for special projects, said the authority would finish the project at the
earliest. "People will have to bear with some of the digging work in the parking lots before all the important infrastructure is in place," he said. A source revealed that after the Rs 85 lakh was approved in the budget for 2010-11, a few more lakhs were also sanctioned by the General Body later, when it was realised that more money would be required for some of the works.