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After Kamala Mills fire, BMC wakes up to violations in 45 eateries in Lower Parel

Since the December 29 fire, the BMC has started to inspect establishments for unauthorised constructions and carried out mass demolitions across 24 wards.

mumbai Updated: Jan 31, 2018 10:02 IST
Geetanjali Gurlhosur
Geetanjali Gurlhosur
Hindustan Times
Mumbai,Fire,BMC
According to the Brihanmumbai Municipal Corporation (BMC), while 40 eateries were found to have unauthorised extensions such as sheds or internal structure modifications, five violated fire safety norms(HT FILE)

In the past one month, the civic body has acted against 45 of the 220-odd eateries in Lower Parel for violating various norms, as part of the action initiated after the fire in Kamala Mills in the area killed 14.

According to the Brihanmumbai Municipal Corporation (BMC), while 40 eateries were found to have unauthorised extensions such as sheds or internal structure modifications, five violated fire safety norms. The illegal extensions were demolished as the owners did not remove them despite giving them a 15-day notice. Two of the five eateries that were shut for non-compliance of fire norms have opened after making changes as per the law.

“More than 20 of the 45 eateries were in Kamala Mills,” said an official from the building and factory department.

Eleven other commercial establishments in other mill compounds, too, faced demolition.

Since the December 29 fire, the BMC has started to inspect establishments for unauthorised constructions and carried out mass demolitions across 24 wards.

“We sent notices to all eateries to remove any unapproved construction that they may have carried out. Many of them complied with the order. We are focusing on mill areas as they are congested with many pubs and cafes. Fire exits are the first thing we are looking at,” said a civic official, who is on the inspection team.

The BMC charges the establishments fines for illegal constructions and demolition.

Devendrakumar Jain, assistant municipal commissioner, said, “All commercial establishments in Lower Parel will be inspected.”

Over the past decade, Lower Parel has metamorphosed into a hub of pubs, bistros, restaurants and cafes constructed in a haphazard manner on narrow lanes inside mill complexes. Kamala Mills, which is one of the 13 old mills in Lower Parel, has close to 36 pubs and restaurants, the highest in any mill area.

First Published: Jan 31, 2018 10:02 IST