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Fire safety: MCH in sealing mode

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RULES FIRST: MCH employees locking and sealing shops that lacked fire safety measures at Maheswari Complex at Masab Tank on Friday. PHOTO: SATISH H.
RULES FIRST: MCH employees locking and sealing shops that lacked fire safety measures at Maheswari Complex at Masab Tank on Friday. PHOTO: SATISH H.

Staff Reporter

Shuts down two buildings for not installing fire fighting systems Two buildings shut down for not installing systems

HYDERABAD: A year after it set in motion the process of making multi-storied buildings install mandatory fire fighting systems, the Municipal Corporation of Hyderabad has started sealing premises of recalcitrant ones.

Nearly three months after issuing `final notices', it cracked the whip on Friday shutting down Maheswari Complex, a residential-cum-commercial building at Masab Tank and another belonging to Zasdal Khan in Banjara Hills to drive home the seriousness of its intent.

The civic body has already pasted `unsafe building notices' on some commercial and residential complexes. Residential buildings of 18 metres and above and commercial buildings of 15 metres and above have come under the scanner of fire safety rules.

Additional Commissioner (Planning & Projects) K. Dhananjaya Reddy said sufficient time was given to both commercial and residential high rise buildings, and it was time for taking penal action against them as per the assurances given to High Court.

It being annual examinations time, little more breathing space will be given to residential multi-storied blocks, he said, clarifying that the corporation was more interested in ensuring fire safety norms than sealing structures.

Similarly, it would not touch 15 Government buildings falling under the fire safety ambit for the time being though none of them have responded. Only the MCH head office had placed orders for installing necessary equipment from among them, it is learnt.

Last week, six teams from the Town Planning section undertook a verification exercise on the status of fire safety measures taken up by 80 multi-storied buildings. They have been issued notices to adopt "feasible fire fighting steps" many months before.

Of these, 60 buildings responded to the notices, 27 complied, 31 began installing the equipment and 10 others were under construction.


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