All the educational institutions in Punjab have been issued instructions to implement the existing fire safety norms to avert fire incidents in their premises.
To ensure full-proof fire security arrangements, all the educational institutions had been asked to comply with the detailed instructions on fire safety, said state education minister Sikandar Singh Maluka here on Thursday.
The minister also directed the state fire services under the local government department to carry out inspection of the educational institutions within three months to improve their fire safety measures in accordance with existing instructions and sought a compliance report to monitor the situation.
The orders have been issued making it mandatory for all educational institutions to obtain a no objection certificate (NOC) from the fire service department so that it could verify and check their fire-fighting arrangements and have the gaps and deficiencies attended to.
The minister said that the education department was observing adequate precautions in the cooking facilities for preparing mid-day meals in upper primary and primary schools by providing fire extinguishers to such schools.
Maluka also said that commercialisation and intense competition was causing schools to be housed in congested localities in ill-suited buildings.These schools with inadequate floor space with cramped seating arrangements, poor ventilation and lighting did not have the necessary emergency escape routes, he said.
According to fire safety norms, the minister said, one-storied school buildings are required to install fire extinguishers in every two classrooms and ensure proper exits for children.