New Delhi, June 23 (IANS) Two days after a huge fire gutted four floors of the Maharashtra Secretariat in Mumbai, officials here said that Delhi's 10-storey secretariat building too was found to have flouted fire safety norms. Its clearance certificate was revoked for four months from January to April this year.
"Yes, the Delhi Secretariat had issues with the fire safety norms. We suspended their NOC (No-Objection Certificate). After they rectified...we re-issued it. As of now the secretariat has complied with the fire safety norms," a Delhi Fire Service (DFS) officer, pleading anonymity, told IANS.
Reacting to the fire safety issue, Chief Minister Sheila Dikshit told a TV channel, "We are vigilant about it."
According to the fire brigade, the ten-floor Delhi Secretariat in central Delhi, which houses the Chief Minister's Office and other important government offices, did not adhere to many of the fire safety norms. So, the Delhi Fire Service suspended its clearance certificate and it was re-issued on May 4.
The fire safety certificate was suspended for four months from January to April.
"We noticed that most of the fire safety equipments like the smoke sensors were defunct, the main water pipeline in the building was not functioning...so the fire fighting equipments like sprinklers, hose drills and water hydrants could not be used, which was rectified only recently," a DFS officer said.
Fire Safety Association of India (FSAI) executive member Nikhil Krishen said: "Many government buildings, though they do fire audits, don't implement it as it is costly. For example, the Mumbai Mantralaya had done its fire safety audits in 2008, but what is the use?"