Spurred by fire incidents in the city, firemen will now turn actors and for the first time will be seen in street plays and theatres for creating awareness and endorsing ways to circumvent fire and techniques of fire safety.
Firemen will perform street plays to stress on the importance of fire-safety equipment maintenance. The street play, Paagal, is a brainchild of Chief Fire Officer Uday Tatkare. It was scripted by a group of firemen led by assistant station officer U.K. Bhagat.
“It has become important for us to inform people about precautionary measures. Instead of giving lectures, showing presentations and other such methods, we thought doing street plays would make things more catchy and interesting,” Tatkare said. The Mumbai Fire Brigade intends to stage about 100 plays in a year. The plays will hit the city by May 26. The first will be held at a gymkhana near NM Joshi Marg in Chinchpokli, followed by Yashwant Natya Mandir in Matunga.
Bhagat, who has penned the script said, “Many a times, people do not realise that they can prevent fire if they take precautionary measures. Like, before leaving the house if they leave a little space for ventilation then the intensity is reduced substantially.” When asked why the street play is named Paagal, Bhagat said, “I had read a fire manual that told us remind yourself of Paagal before leaving home. Pa stands for paani (water), Ga for gas and L for light. These three things should always be checked if they are shut, before leaving home.”
Bhagat said, “One of the plays will depict how a housewife, who is glued to her favourite TV serial, one night forgets to switch off the gas stove and next day the room is engulfed in fire.”
“In most cases, fire takes place due carelessness. We want to impart knowledge through these plays,” Bhagat said.