'Gutted Dum Dum market to be reconstructed with proper safety measures'
KOLKATA: State Urban Development and Municipal Affairs minister Firhad Hakim on Tuesday assured shop keepers of the Gorabazar market in Dum Dum that the local municipality will take necessary steps to reconstruct the same, which was ravaged by a major fire that broke out late on Sunday night.
"The government will stand by the shopkeepers who have suffered heavy losses due to the fire. It is the job of the local municipality to stand by the people who have been affected and rehabilitate them. They will render all necessary help for setting up the market. We are hopeful of making temporary arrangements for those in the market to start business in 10 days," Hakim said with the chairman of Dum Dum municipality of Harinder Singh by his side.
Two persons were killed and several others injured in the fire at the market in Dum Dum. The minister further said a team of engineers from the Kolkata Metropolitan Development Authority (KMDA) will visit the market on Wednesday to examine how it can be reconstructed. "We will rebuild the market but the process will take time," a senior official of the Municipal Affairs department said adding that the market is unsafe when it comes to fire fighting mechanism. State Fire and Emergency Services minister Sovan Chatterjee, who accompanied Hakim to the spot, said the narrow space had acted as a barrier to the firemen and assured that a foolproof fire safety mechanism will be put in place at the market. "It is necessary that any building or market place should have two basic things — firstly, minimum infrastructure for fighting fire on their own and secondly, adequate space for fire tenders to reach the source of fire. We will see to it that this is followed during the reconstruction of the market," the minister said.
A nationalised bank situated on the first floor of an adjacent building was also gutted. According to fire officials, more than 400 shops situated in the market were completely damaged.
As many as 22 fire tenders were pressed into action to douse the flames. The two persons Sunil Sahu and Viki Singh, who died, were sleeping inside the shop with the shutter down. The losses suffered by the shopkeepers have been to the extent of a few crores.