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1,030 houses damaged in Malad fire: Collector’s office

Updated on: 16 March,2023 08:19 AM IST  |  Mumbai
Prajakta Kasale |

Students taking SSC exam receive help from NGOs and schools

1,030 houses damaged in Malad fire: Collector’s office

Residents of Anand Nagar at Malad East’s Appa pada try to come to terms with the fire that claimed their homes and possessions, on Tuesday. Pics/Nimesh Dave

The office of the collector of Mumbai Suburban district has finished assessing the damage caused by the fire that broke out on Monday evening in Malad East. As per the data collected, 1,030 shanties were gutted in the fire. The information will be submitted to the state government. Meanwhile, a few NGOs have come forward to give books to needy students, who are sitting for the SSC exam. School-going children who are not taking the board exams this year will also require help.

The fire that broke out in Anand Nagar, a slum on a slope on forest land, is one of the biggest blazes witnessed in the past few years. Thousands of slum dwellers ran for their lives after the fire broke out, abandoning their possessions and homes to the flames, and most things that stood on 10,000 square metres of land were turned to ashes. Though temporary shelter and food have been provided by the BMC, as the slum is situated on forest land, the civic body is not obligated to provide compensation to the victims. However, the state government may give them some relief on humanitarian grounds.

“We provided shelter and will hand out food for the next two to three days on humanitarian grounds. But the shanties were on forest land and they can take the next course of action,” said Kiran Dighavkar, assistant commissioner, P North ward.

Also Read: Mumbai: SSC students lose books, hall tickets in Malad fire

The panchnama work was started by the collector's office on Monday, said a resident. Prior to the assessment, the authorities reckoned that around 2,000 to 3,000 houses were affected. “The assessment was complete and I visited the site to ensure the timely completion of the work. We received data that 1,030 shanties were damaged in the fire. We will submit the information to the state government as and when required,” said Rajendra Bhosale, collector, Mumbai Suburban.

Meanwhile, a few NGOs have come forward to help. According to a tweet shared by a member of the Rotary Club of Bombay Seacoast, books were handed out to SSC students of Jagdale school. “The students received books and essentials from various NGOs and we are trying to provide them a safe space to study till the exam ends. But there is a need to provide books to children appearing for the Class 9 and below exams,” said Yogesh Bole, who has been doing social work in the area for years. He said, in the Jamrishi Nagar fire incident, which occurred in February and gutted 67 houses, assistance funds were received after almost 20 to 25 days on the basis of assessment. “The state government should release aid as soon as possible for Anand Nagar as people are staying here without basic facilities,” he said.

“Arrangements for sheltering 4,000 persons have been made near Buva Salvi maidan along with a medical facility and 30-seat mobile toilet facility. In addition to meals for 1,200 persons, we are supplying of drinking water via tankers,” said a BMC official.

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