Make in India's dark side: Crane owner's woes continue

Feb 24, 2016, 07:11 IST | Vinod Kumar Menon

Despite staring at a bleak future after his cranes were gutted in the fire at a Make in India event, owner Sayed Hussain will now be forced to arrange for Rs 5 lakh for shifting them from Girgaum to Wadala TT

The fire that gutted the stage for ‘Maharashtra Night’ at the Make in India programme at Girgaum chowpatty, has jeopardised the future of 12 families earning their bread and butter from the two cranes — charred in the fire — installed at the event.

Also Read: The Make in India loss no one's discussing

One of the damaged trucks being loaded onto a trailer. The damaged cranes are expected to reach Wadala Truck Terminal in the wee hours of Wednesday. Pic/Sayyed Sameer Abedi

While the civic and police officials quickly moved the debris from the venue the same night, they were unable to do the same with the hydraulic cranes — MH-43-3313 and MH-06-AL-5017 — owned by Super Crane Services.

Company proprietor Sayed Akbar Hussain, a member of Maharashtra Vahatuk Sena, said arrangements have been made to shift the cranes from Girgaum to Wadala Truck Terminal. Hussain said he will now have to arrange for Rs 5 lakh for loading and unloading the cranes, further endangering his family’s future.

Lamenting the losses incurred, Hussain said, "Besides exhausting all our resources, we took a bank loan to purchase these cranes. Currently, we are not in a position to bear such heavy losses. Our future looks bleak. Moreover, we don’t know whether any of the cranes will ever work."

Read Story: Make In India blaze: Fire department blames 'negligence by organiser'

It has been learnt that following Sunday mid-day’s report (‘The make in India loss no one is discussing,’ February 21) representatives from Wizcraft International Entertainment (Pvt) Ltd visited Hussain at his Wadala Truck Terminal Office on Monday and assured to fix a meeting with their senior company directors in the coming days to look into the matter.

Speaking to mid-day, Hussain’s son Shahzad said, "We hired two hydraulic cranes and two trailers to lift and load our damaged cranes. We have been given permission to do the shifting only during nighttime. We’ll start from here after 10 pm (Tuesday) and should reach Wadala in the wee hours of Wednesday. Our cranes will stay here till the time we repair them. Inspection of the cranes revealed that the Grove model (MH-43-3313) is damaged completely, while chances of repairing the other crane (MH-06-AL-5017) are slim. Moreover, the spare parts are expensive."

Sabhajeet Yadav, who works as a supervisor at the company, claimed that cranes would require an overhaul because the fire damaged the digital control panels, engine rooms, important navigational mach-inery and numerous parts. "Experts will have to open the entire crane to tell us how much it will cost to fix them. Since we can’t afford to foot the bill, we hope the event organisers (Wizcraft) provide us some financial assistance," he added.

Guidelines flouted
mid-day has learnt that Wizcraft not only violated the court directives by using pyrotechnics and failing to use fire-retardant materials, it also flouted guidelines set by Bureau of Indian Standards (BSI). The guidelines are as follows:

>> Choice of material for construction of stage shall be of non-combustible or fire-resistant type
>> Wherever materials of combustible nature are used these shall be treated with a fire-retardant solution (gives a list of chemical)
>> All decorative clothing used for construction and stage decoration must be of retardant material
>> No decorative paper/ synthetic material will be used in the pandal
>> No pandal will be erected beneath and adjacent to any live electrical line
>> Storage of flammable and explosive chemicals and similar materials shall not be permitted inside any temporary structure
>> No fire workshop or open flame of any kind shall be permitted in any temporary structure or in the immediate vicinity.

Blast from the past
Following cases compelled Ministry of Consumer Affairs to direct BIS to formulate mandatory guidelines for fire safety measures while constructing temporary structures and pandals

>> Dabwali mishap
The Dabwali fire accident occurred on December 23, 1995, at Mandi Dabwali in Sirsa district of Haryana. The incident occurred at the Rajiv Marriage Palace, where the local DAV Public School was holding its annual prize distribution ceremony. A synthetic tent that was set up inside the school building caught fire following short-circuit in an electric generator. The fire spread quickly and blocked the main entrance. Many of the deaths were caused by the resultant stampede, as 1,500 people tried to escape through the single exit door. At least 400 people died and another 160 were injured. But sources claim about 540 people lost their lives, including 170 children.

>> Meerut mishap
On April 10, 2006, a fire swept through a consumer electronics fair (Brand India Fair) in Victoria Park, Meerut, killing at least 100 people and injuring 150 others. The fire was said to have been caused by a short circuit. About 2,000 people were present at the fair when the fire broke out at 5.30 pm

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