The DB Marg police registered a case against event organiser Wizcraft International Entertainment Private Ltd for negligence almost a fortnight after a massive fire gutted the Make In India programme at Girgaum.
The police filed the case based on a report submitted by the fire brigade officials and are now in the process of fixing responsibility of the incident on an individual. The investigators, meanwhile, said the organisers were informed by the fire officials and the police, ahead of the programme, to remove the combustible items (paint and others) kept under the podium to be moved out, however, they continued to be there.
The police have recorded statements of at least 12 people, including two employees of the organising company. Officials said the duo claimed to have asked the workers to move out the said items from the stage, which the workers allegedly did not follow.
The 185-page investigation report submitted to BMC chief earlier this week stated that the fire was caused by a short circuit owing to an spark from the electric wirings, which came in contact with the combustible material stored beneath the stage. This included curtains, wooden planks, plywood sheets, material used for pyrotechnics, LPG cylinders and tins containing paints and inflammable adhesive.
“The case pertains to the combustible material being placed under the stage putting the security of all those present at stake. They failed to provide enough security and to take enough precautions for the event,” said Dhananjay Kulkarni, the deputy commissioner and Mumbai police spokesperson.
Officials at the DB Marg police station said they are in the process of identifying the individual(s) who are responsible and that statements of at least 15 others were in the process of being recorded. These persons include the vendors and technical staff who were active around the stage. Despite several calls and messages, none from the accused event management firm was available for any comment.
On the basis of the report submitted by the fire brigade, the police have registered a case under sections 285 (negligent conduct with respect to fire or combustible matter) and 336 (act endangering life or personal safety of others) of the Indian Penal Code. Investigation is underway.