Kamala Mills fire: 150 cops search building for three hours to nab 1 Above owner

Jan 01, 2018, 10:28 IST | Anurag Kamble

In the wee hours of Sunday, it took 150 police officers three hours to catch Hitesh Sanghvi, the owner of the pub 1 Above, which is at the centre of the Kamala Mills fire tragedy that claimed 14 lives

Chaitya Tower
Chaitya Tower in Mazgaon, from where Hitesh Sanghvi was caught

In the wee hours of Sunday, it took 150 police officers three hours to catch Hitesh Sanghvi, the owner of the pub 1 Above, which is at the centre of the Kamala Mills fire tragedy that claimed 14 lives. The police had kept a close watch on Chaitya Tower, a high-rise in Mazgaon, where Sanghvi lives. Sanghvi resides with his family in the plush 16-storey building, where they own the first floor and have homes from floors 14 to 16. He was supposedly evading arrest by running from one floor to the other via stairs built inside the flat.

To look for him, a team was formed with officers from Byculla and other police stations. Cops informed all residents about their operation and sought their help. "Each and every resident of the building co-operated with us. To our surprise, they even kept their doors open to help officers check if Sanghvi was trying to flee," said one officer.

Also read: Kamala Mills Fire: Cousin Used WhatsApp To Help 1 Above Owner Evade Cops

Two policemen were posted on each floor. When cops reached the 14th floor, the Sanghvi family allegedly didn't co-operate with them. The officers broke down the door, but were unable to find Sanghvi. They finally managed to find him in his bedroom on the 15th floor.

'Mehta gave illegal nod'
Activist Abha Singh has objected to BMC chief Ajoy Mehta heading the committee that will probe the recent tragedy, stating in a letter: "Mehta himself gave illegal approval for setting up 18 eateries in one building at Kamala Mills by relaxing provisions of the DCR. In other words, you have asked Mehta to conduct a probe against himself. This violates the rule of natural justice."

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