Staffer gets discharged, reports for work

  • Priya Prabhakaran, Hindustan Times, Mumbai
  • |
  • Updated: Feb 11, 2011 01:47 IST

A day after the fire at Bombay House, Shivaji Desai, 56, one of the employees hospitalised for smoke inhalation, reported for work on Thursday.

A senior officer in the maintenance department, Desai was admitted to St George Hospital on Wednesday and treated for smoke inhalation.

Desai got himself discharged from the hospital on Thursday against medical advice and reported for work “a little late” at 1.30pm.

“I am fine and have responsibilities at work,” Desai said. He works in the basement of the building where the fire occurred. He said apart from the canteen, all other areas in the basement had been restored.

On Wednesday, Desai’s quick thinking prevented the fire from spreading through the building. He switched off the basement’s air-conditioner unit on hearing the fire alarm go off.

“I remembered that in 1991 a fire had broken out at Bombay House and had spread through the electric cable,” he said.

At St George Hospital, where others are still in the intensive care unit, Suresh Patel, 36, spoke to everyone visiting his colleague Chandrakant More, 43, who was suffering the effects of smoke inhalation. “Please don’t tell him his three colleagues are dead,” Patel told visitors.

Patel, More and Shrikant Kute, 26, are expected to stay in hospital for another three days. Patel and Kute said they were concerned about More, who is in a state of shock since the incident.

More, a Jogeshwari resident, said he had sat in a corner of the basement with a wet cloth over his mouth and nose. “I was washing utensils when the fire broke out. When the fire brigade splashed water on the door, I tried to run out but fell unconscious. I woke up in hospital,” More said.

More says he saw the doctors trying to revive Ishwar Patel, Farad Wadia and Sushant Pawar.

“I saw them being taken out of hospital. Nobody is telling me the truth, something unfortunate has happened to them,” More said breaking into tears.

 

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