Home >News >India >Mumbai: Six people, including management of Dreams Mall, booked in Bhandup fire incident

Police have registered a case of culpable homicide against six people in connection with a major fire at a Bhandup mall, that was also being used as a Covid-19 hospital. At least nine patients undergoing treatment there are reported to have died in the incident.

The names of Housing Development and Infrastructure Ltd (HDIL) promoter Rakesh Wadhawan and his son Sarang, who are directors of the mall, figure in the FIR, an official said.

The management of the Dreams Mall, where the incident occurred and the Sunrise Hospital, a Covid-19 facility, was also named in the FIR that was registered at Bhandup police station late night on Friday, the official said.

"Rakesh Wadhawan, Nikita Amit Singh Trehan, Sarang Wadhawan and Deepak Shirke, who are directors of the mall, and Amit Singh Trehan and Sweety Jain, who are directors of the hospital are named in the FIR. Nikita Trehan is also a director of the hospital," the official said.

The case against them was registered under IPC sections 304 (culpable homicide not amounting to murder) and 34 (common intention), the Bhandup police station official said.

"During the probe conducted so far, police found several lapses at the mall. There is mismanagement in terms of security and the fire safety equipment was not checked on time," he added.

It was also found that although there are 1,108 shops in the mall, nearly 40% of them are shut and not in operation, he said.

"In January, the Sunrise Hospital was converted into a Covid Care Centre," the official said.

A fire had broken out in the mall shortly after Thursday midnight. It had erupted in a shop and spread to the hospital located on the top floor of the four-storeyed mall building, fire brigade officials have said.

Nine Covid-19 patients undergoing treatment at the hospital died due to suffocation as a result of the fire, while two other patients at the hospital had already died due to coronavirus before the fire broke out, the Brihanmumbai Municipal Corporation (BMC) had said.

Altogether 78 patients were being treated at the 107- bed hospital when the fire broke out, the BMC had said, adding that 67 patients were shifted to other hospitals after the blaze.

CM announces relief

Maharashtra Chief Minister Uddhav Thackeray, who visited the spot on Friday afternoon, had said that permission was granted to the hospital last year to run a Covid-19 centre temporarily.

"Its license was due to expire on March 31, but the fire took place before that. However, the fire did not start at the hospital, but elsewhere," he said.

Thackeray also apologised to the families of those who died.

"I ask for forgiveness from the families of those who died," CM Thackeray said while speaking to reporters Friday afternoon.

"Action will be taken against those who are found responsible. Compensation will be given to families of the deceased. Most of the patients who have died were on the ventilator," the CM added.

He announced a compensation of 5 lakh for the families of the victims.

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