City Centre Mall fire: Traders gutted after 700 stores are burnt down
Shopkeepers alleged that they tried to help the firefighters to bring the situation under control but the latter refused to listen to them and delayed the process by three hours
THE fire at the City Centre Mall in Nagpada, South Mumbai has left shopkeepers completely devastated as more than 600-700 shops at the centre have been reduced to ashes. Shopkeepers alleged that they tried to help the firefighters to bring the situation under control but the latter refused to listen to them and delayed the process by three hours. However, though the reason behind the fire is said to be a short circuit on the second floor, the shopkeepers said the blaze eventually spread due to the multiple sanitizers kept at stores.
Speaking to mid-day, Jawahar Dave, BJP leader and Mumbai Mobile Accessories Association member, said, "The fire broke out at a second floor mobile shop due to a short circuit according to the shopkeeper. The fire brigade team rushed to the spot and we offered to help them but they started arguing with us and that went on for three hours. Around 11.30 pm on Thursday they started extinguishing the fire.
By then it had spread through the entire floor." The traders said that goods worth `150 crore were burnt in the blaze.
"We advised the firemen to break the upper glass of the shopping centre but they did not listen. We had also asked them to get vans with big stairs but they refused and fire spread fast," Dave explained. Sources said that the blaze was not under control till 6 pm on Friday and around 600-700 shops were burnt.
Requesting anonymity, a shopkeeper from Dombivli said, "Two weeks back I had ordered two containers of mobile phones. When the fire broke out I was in Kutch and by the time I reached Mumbai all of it was burnt."
Addressing the media at the spot, Vidhan Sabha member Amin Patel said, "The fire spread due to the sanitizers kept inside shops. As per information, the mall has insurance cover and we will try to ensure that all the shopkeepers can avail the benefits of it. We will also take financial help from state government."
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