In a major lapse of building norms, it has been found that the Noida authority allowed the company to operate in the building despite the fire department not having issued a no-objection certificate.
The plot was allotted in 1980 and in the last 37 years, no occupancy certificate was issued by the Noida authority. However, the authority, without ensuring fire safety systems are in place, allowed the building owner to rent out the premises in August 2016.
The police also lodged an FIR against the building owner and Excel Greentech for negligence, as they were running operations without following fire safety rules and other norms.
HT has accessed a report sent to the state government by the fire department.
“Without an occupancy certificate, the power department gave connection to the building. There was no setback area in the building. There should be at least 1-metre gap at the periphery of the building so that in case of a fire, those trapped inside could be rescued, but one side of the building does not have that gap. The walls are back to back with the wall of another building,” Arvind Kumar, joint director, UP fire department, said.
“At the time of commencing the construction, the fire department issues a provisional NOC. After construction of the building based on sanctioned layout plan, the Noida authority should have issued a completion certification. At the time of completion certificate, the Noida authority or the building owner should have sought the final NOC from the fire department,” Kumar said.
The building was first allotted to M/s Shahdara Insulated Cable Co on June 3, 1980, and the company later transferred the plot to M/s Topkcon Power Cables Private Limited on September 23, 1985, and the lease deed for the plot was executed on March 31, 1986.
M/s Topkcon Power Cables Private Limited on November 10, 2006, submitted the layout plan to the authority and it was approved on December 19, 2006. The company later transferred the plot to M/s SRS creations Pvt Ltd for ready-made garment project on April 22, 2010.
Initially, Banwari Lal Agarwal and Padma Rani each held 50% stake of the plot. On March 13, 2015, the major stakeholders changed to Harish Chand (40%), Monika Malik (30%) and Girish Kumar (30%).
The building was reconstructed and another layout plan submitted on April 6, 2015. The fire department issued a provisional NOC on March 30, 2015, but it did not issue the final NOC, for which a final inspection is required.
The layout plan shows that the building has a basement, parking lot on the ground floor, first floor and second floor but the building has four floors, besides the basement.
M/s Excel Greentech Pvt Ltd also did not seek an NOC from the fire department.
“The company staff said that the company deals in electrical products, especially LED lights. The staff told us that assembling activity was going on in the basement, while the ground, first and second floors were used for storage. The company staff used to sit on the third floor. Excel Greentech flouted all rules. It was not registered under Factory Act 1948.It started functioning without getting necessary approvals. As a result, the problem is that we do not know how many employees were working with the company,” BK Rai, deputy labour commissioner, Gautam Budh Nagar, said.
Noida authority additional chief executive officer (ACEO), PK Agarwal, said that a team has been formed to examine the facts. “The probe will figure out why the industry department issued a functional certificate without the building having the necessary occupancy certificate and fire NOC,” Agarwal said.