The fire audit of high-rises in the State is moving at a snail's pace despite several strictures by the High Court.
In fact, Home Minister K.J. George sprung into action on Thursday reviewing fire audits of high-rises only after the High Court on September 1 issued directions to speed up the process while hearing a PIL filed by Uday Vijayan of Beyond Carlton.
It was a PIL by Uday Vijayan which led to the 2011 government order vesting the Fire Department with the power to inspect all high-rises with April 2012 deadline. The fire audit is yet to be completed.
M.N. Reddi, DGP, Fire and Emergency Services said that the department had till date completed fire audit of 2,205 high-rises in the State of which 1,697 are in the city. Of these, 1,186 buildings have neither an NOC from the Fire and Emergency Services nor a Clearance Certificate (CC) from civic agencies. Mr. Reddi said that the department would serve a notice to these 1,186 buildings to install fire safety measures within 90 days.
“If they fail to do so, we will recommend disconnection of power and water supply,” he said.
Uday Vijayan of Beyond Carlton said that civic agencies are in collusion with builders who ignore norms.
“On its part, the Fire Department has done precious little on the fire audit of these buildings in the last four years,” he said.
Hindering the process is the acute shortage of trained human resources, say fire officials.