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Lookout notices against Mumbai pub co-owners

Mumbai: A day after 14 lives were lost in a devastating blaze at a Mumbai pub, the police on Saturday issued lookout notices against its two co-owners, while the civic body directed officials to ensure that safety norms are followed in restaurants and bars thronged by people on New Year's Eve. The fire brigade is trying to confirm whether flames from a fire stunt by a bartender, burning coal used for hookah, short circuit or anything else led to the fire.
According to a senior police official, lookout notices were on Saturday issued against Hitesh Sanghvi and Jigar Sanghvi, the co-owner of '1 Above' pub, which is run by C Grade Hospitality. The police said that they were in the process of issuing lookout notices against other accused as well.
On Friday, the police had booked the Sanghvi brothers, another co-owner Abhijeet Manka and others, under IPC sections 304 (culpable homicide not amounting to murder), 337 (causing hurt by act endangering life or personal safety of others) and 338 (causing grievous hurt by act endangering life or personal safety of others). The massive fire that swept through the pub left 14 people dead and 21 injured. Among those killed was Khushbu Bansali, the woman who was celebrating her 29th birthday.
Civic chief Ajoy Mehta, in a message to all BMC assistant municipal commissioners and deputy commissioners, said all zonal deputy commissioners and ward officers are requested to form teams comprising staff of building and factory departments, medical health officer and fire department. The teams will inspect all the restaurants in their respective wards and ensure that they are compliant to fire safety norms, the message stated.
The premises should have fire escape routes, staircases and ensure open spaces are encroachment free, it said. The Mumbai civic body had on Friday suspended five officials, including those attached to the G-South ward for dereliction of duty. There are allegations that civic authorities turned a blind eye to construction irregularities and violation of fire safety norms in the compound.
Mumbai mayor Vishwanath Mahadeshwar had said an inquiry had been ordered and strict action would be taken against errant officials.
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