Special Correspondent

KADAPA: Chief Minister Y.S. Rajasekhara Reddy on Friday accused the Opposition parties of making “baseless and cheap” remarks on Thursday’s fire in the D block of the State Secretariat.

Important files and computerised records were safe and there was no scope for any doubts, the Chief Minister told media persons here. All the vital records were safe because the fire did not spread to the several wings on the second floor of the Secretariat, he said.

He dubbed the charges levelled by the Telugu Desam Party, Communist Party of India and CPI (M) “cheap tactics”. His government responded promptly and not only instituted an inquiry by the CB-CID but appointed a three-member committee of senior officials to probe into the accident.

He advised the Opposition to ascertain facts before levelling unwarranted charges.

Hyderabad Special Correspondent adds: After a review, Finance Minister K. Rosaiah and Chief Secretary P. Ramakanth Reddy said only four to five files were found damaged and that too because of the water used by firemen. They put the loss at Rs. 50 lakh.

I. Y. R. Krishna Rao and Ajay Mishra, Principal Secretaries of Finance and IT respectively, said the budget papers and the data in computers were safe, as the fire didn’t touch the 50 servers covering the 3,000 computers in the Secretariat.

“Even if these had been damaged, “mirror data” would be available from the back-up servers functioning from undisclosed location in the Secretariat.

The CB-CID began investigation with M. Punna Rao, IG, visiting the site. Mr. Rosaiah said the inquiry would also identify persons for non-functioning of fire-fighters and alarms in the block.

Media persons who visited the site saw damage was confined to two network rooms located on the second and third floors.

About 100 old-type computers which were dumped in the rooms, two massive switches facilitating connectivity to the computers, computer material and four ACs were burnt along with heavy cables and wiring.

Network rooms

Employees’ attendance in the block was thin, though 400 other computers functioned on the ground and first floors with their network rooms lying below the burnt-out ones being intact.

Suresh Chandra, IT Secretary, said Internet connectivity to computers on the second and third floors would be restored by Monday.

More In: Today's Paper