Anaj Mandi fire: More arrests may follow, police use 3D mapping to establish sequence of events
More arrests are likely to follow in the tragic Anaj Mandi fire incident that claimed 43 lives on Sunday morning, police said.
After Delhi Police obtained 14-day custody of building owner Rehan and his manager Furkan on Monday, senior officers said their interrogations will lead investigators to other stakeholder of the building and help them identify the contractors to whom positrons were sublet to run factories. Police are also conducting 3D mapping of the building to recreate the night of horror and ascertain the cause behind the blaze, they said.
Hours after Sunday’s horrific fire — that started from the second floor and later engulfed the entire five storey building — police had nabbed Mohammad Rehan, who had fled to Uttar Pradesh about learning about the casualties. Police said while Rehan owns a major share of the building, other portions are owned by his brothers and in-laws. His manager Furkan was also arrested from his in-law’s place in Delhi.
Delhi police commissioner Amulya Patnaik had on Sunday also transferred the probe to the crime branch. Deputy commissioner of police (crime) Rajesh Deo, who is supervising the investigations, said they will interrogate Rehan and Furkan to find out who all owned the building.
“This will help us find out who is responsible for the negligence. Also we will identify the contractors who were running the factories from the building. We expect more arrests to follow,” Deo said.
The DCP further said that they are in the process of conducting 3D laser scanning of the building. “We have started the procedure. The building has been badly damaged and this will help us establish how it looked before the fire. With the help of the statements of those who survived and through interrogation of the arrested men, we will also be able to establish what factory was located where,” he said.
The officer said that by Monday, his teams had recorded the statements of seven injured persons. “Apart from this, we have also recorded statements of nine witnesses who were present in the building at the time of incident,” he said.
He also said that forensics teams had visited the spot had collected samples, which will be analysed to find out how the fire spread in the building and what combustible materials were stored. “With the help of debris samples we collected, we will find out which way the fire spread. Some portions of the building were completely burnt, some places had around 60% damage and some portions were not burnt at all. This gives us an idea of where the fire was big and where it did not reach,” Deo explained.
He also said that forensic experts will find out what solutions, chemicals or material ehlped magnify the blaze.
Deo said that they had written to civic agency to obtain other details — like the floor plan, legalities and details about the land.