Nearly 100 people were rendered homeless after massive fire broke out at a furniture godown near Kirti Nagar railway station on Thursday night. As per reports, the fire spread to adjoining areas engulfing a slum and two buildings.
Around 32 fire tenders were deployed to control the fire, which took around 10 hours to bring the fire under control. Reportedly, the fire was so fierce that the railways had to halt its operations. It had broken out at around midnight inside a four-storey building, and rapidly spread to the nearby slum, said reports.
The slum that was ablaze reportedly sheltered labourers who come to work in timber factories. The police were quoted as saying by the Times of India, “Migrant labourers who come to work in the timber factories during the production season rent the shacks. We have been asking them to take fire safety measures for quite some time.” As per the labourers, they have lost their belongings and phones in the fire that ravaged their shanties. However, no loss of life has been reported. The reason behind the fire is yet to be ascertained.
Speaking to Newsclick, Anurag Saxena, CITU, said, “This is a criminal negligence of Delhi government and Arvind Kejriwal. Lives of labourers don’t matter. Where will they live now? It’s cold in here. There are no safety measures. Every day, we wake up to the news of factory fires and slums ravaged in fire. I met the labour commissioner recently, and asked him to take action. The sad part is labour commissioner is not even concerned to visit these areas to inspect, and do the needful. There are many illegal factories in Delhi. No step has been taken. Labourers are dying every day; their homes are gutted. We have sent a team to the area to investigate.” As per the reports, the owners at the godown were asked to take fire security measures but to no avail.
Delhi slums have been struggling with frequent fires. In 2018, massive fire had engulfed 70 shanties in Rohini Sector 26. In another massive fire at Delhi’s Mansarovar Park, around hundred shanties were burnt to ashes. A six-year-old girl had also reportedly died in the fire.