A fire broke out outside the orthopaedics operation theatre of Guru Tegh Bahadur Hospital in east Delhi on Wednesday, stalling surgeries for the day.
The incident, reported around 11 am in a corridor, comes six months after a fire in the trauma ICU complex of the hospital.
When the fire broke out, a surgery was going on in the operation theatre. As soon as smoke entered the surgery room through AC vents, doctors had to rush through the procedure and shut down the OT for the day.
As a result, four surgeries scheduled for the day had to be cancelled.
Though the exact reason for the fire was not known, it reportedly took place due to a short circuit in the AC plant cable. “The fire brigade was called and the fire was brought under control within 10 minutes. There were no casualties or any significant damage to hospital property,” said GTB hospital’s medical superintendent Dr Rajpal.
The hospital does not have the mandatory no-objection certificate from the fire department. “The hospital does not have the required NOC. The PWD is looking into the cause of the fire and fire safety measures in the hospital. Inflammable substances or short circuit might have caused the fire,” said AK Sharma, director, Delhi Fire Service.
According to a source, old beds and waste used to be dumped in the corridor, which might have caught fire.
“Our patient was supposed to undergo a surgery today but it was cancelled due to the fire. We had to wait for 15 days to get a date. This is so frustrating, you wait for so many days to get a date and then the operation is postponed,” said the patient’s relative, a resident of Mustafabad, near Yamuna Vihar.
Delhi health minister AK Walia has set up a panel to probe the incident.
Walia admitted that 11 government hospitals in Delhi do not have no-objection fire safety (NOC) certificate.
“We have 39 hospitals out of which 11 hospitals do not have fire safety (NOC) certificates,” Walia said here. However, he said, the remaining hospitals will get the No-Objection fire safety certificate by June 10.