The Hyderabad Metropolitan Development Authority (HMDA) has decided to step up security and access to records at all its zonal offices following the episode of several files being destroyed after a fire broke out at its Shankarpally zonal office on Monday,

Two officials have already been suspended for their suspected role in the fire mishap which destroyed more than 490 files pertaining to Land Regularisation Scheme (LRS) and Building Penalisation Scheme (BPS) apart from few related to new building permissions.

The incident happened a day before an enquiry into allegations of certain frauds at the zonal office was to be conducted. Two staff members Prasanna, a junior planning officer, and Suryaprakash, in-charge administrative officer, were placed under suspension after it was found that they had spent around four hours at the office on Sunday despite it being a holiday. The possible connivance of watchman and two others was being also being looked into, officials said.

HMDA Commissioner Neerabh Kumar Prasad has directed the Planning wing to rebuild the records that were lost in fire. Since demand drafts issued by different banks and submitted by applicants were also gutted, the Planning officials were told to contact those banks and get necessary details. A deputy director level officer would be supervising the effort.

“Not all is lost. We have some related data available and there are ways to collate more details from bank, inward and outward registers,” HMDA Secretary, Rama Rao, said. Given the episode at Shankarpally, senior officials have already visited the other three zonal offices at Medchal, Ghatkesar and Shamshabad and took stock of the situation there.

“We are working at tightening the security at all these offices and also introduce security registers to record movement of staff and visitors,” he said.

More In: Hyderabad