Won't attend to calls in Behrampada without proper police protection, complain firefighters
The massive fire that broke out in Bandra's Behrampada slum on December 7 was unusually tough for the firefighters, not just because of the flames, but also because they had to keep protecting themselves and their vehicles from a rowdy mob
Firefighters try to control the situation at Bandra's Behrampada slum. File pic
The massive fire that broke out in Bandra's Behrampada slum on December 7 was unusually tough for the firefighters, not just because of the flames, but also because they had to keep protecting themselves and their vehicles from a rowdy mob.
The area's residents manhandled them as well as damaged a vehicle. Taking note, the fire brigade union has now warned that firefighters would not attend emergency calls in the area without proper police protection.
Last week, the fire brigade had taken three hours to douse the fire at Behrampada, but no one was injured. However, residents had abused and manhandled them.
Mumbai Agnishaman Dal Ladhau Kamgar Sena, a union supported by the Shiv Sena, has written a letter to the municipal commissioner as well as the chief fire officer, demanding an inquiry into the matter. It has also sought that measures be taken to ensure that such incidents don't happen.
In the letter, secretary of the union Baba Kadam said, "Firefighters do their duty without caring about their own lives. We haven't faced such problems anywhere. The Behrampada residents were very aggressive. They even snatched our waterlines and started firefighting themselves."
The letter added, "The fire officers have registered a non-cognizable complaint at the Nirmal Nagar police station. In future, they should be sent for emergency calls with police protection."
Nearly 70 shanties were gutted in a fire that broke out at Bandra’s Behrampada slum early on December 7. The incident took place in Ladkewali Galli around 3.15am. No injuries or casualties were reported.
Water activist Amla Ruia speaks to mid-day