A reply to an RTI application has shed light on the sorry state of the fire department in the city.
More than 50 per cent of the posts in the department are vacant. An RTI application filed by city-based activist Aseem Takyar has revealed that while the city needs 115 fire officials, including the firemen, only 56 positions are occupied.
According to the RTI reply, while 59 posts are vacant, almost 49 posts are of firemen.
“The revelation is quite shocking. What if a fire breaks out in the city? Leave alone the equipment, the department does not even have adequate number of people to tackle the issue,” said Takyar.
The RTI further claims that the highest point till which the ladder of the fire department can reach is 42 metres or the 14th floor. However, the tallest building in the city stands at a little more than 90 metres or at 25 floors.
The fire department in Gurgaon comes under the jurisdiction of the Municipal Corporation of Gurgaon (MCG). However, according to sources while the fire department has been pitching for a hydraulic fire ladder which can reach up to 101 metres, the agenda is yet to be tabled in the house of the MCG.
“The MCG had allocated Rs 27 crore specifically for the modernisation of the fire department. However, the agenda was never tabled before the house because of the sudden transfers of the MCG commissioner,” said a fire official.
MCG Mayor Vimal Yadav said, “We will try to resolve the issue as soon as the election process completes. We will put forward the issue in our next meeting of the house.”