Shift warehouses to city outskirts: Kishan Reddy on recent fires

Hyderabad: Union tourism minister G Kishan Reddy on Friday urged the Telangana government to shift godowns and warehouses operating in residential areas without necessary permissions to the city outskirts.

Keeping in mind the fire incident reported at Ministers Road at Secunderabad in a sports store (which continued for over a day and resulted in a death), Kishan Reddy asked the government to check buildings and other structures in Hyderabad to follow basic fire safety standards.

Reddy said that “learning a lesson” from such an incident will be beneficial in the future. He also spoke to the residents of the colony who were affected by the fire accident.

The union minister instructed officials from the Fire department to make sure that people who were living in fear of the same building collapsing after the fire incident to be provided with all sorts of necessities like food and shelter. The minister also said to arrange a medical camp for the people to check the impact of the toxic fumes that evolved during this incident.

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BJP leader and former vice-chairman of the national disaster management authority Marri Shashidhar Reddy a day earlier also wrote to Telangana chief secretary A Santhi Kumari and requested her to go into detail about the incident including the efforts made to douse the flames.

Going through this detail in bringing the fire under control, Shashidhar Reddy said that officials had found it difficult to get water tankers to fill up the empty fire engines. He added that there is an immediate need to make a committee of experts to make a comprehensive study, document response actions, identify defects, shortcomings, and make recommendations for prevention and better preparedness- all in a time-bound and transparent manner.

Observing the incident that took place on January 19, Shashidhar Reddy said it was the third major incident that broke out in 10 months in Secunderabad, which left 19 people dead in the first two incidents. He felt that except for the people’s representatives making photo-ops and giving statements every time, investigations into the causes of such accidents weren’t made public.