Fire at Mangal Bazar prompts

A day after seven shops in the congested Mangal Bazar were gutted in fire, the Vadodara Municipal Corporation (VMC) is awaiting a report from the Fire Department to plan the decongestion of the market area. On Monday, a fire started in one of the plastic shops in the market which spread through seven shops along the line and took about 13 fire tenders to douse the flames. Vadodara Municipal Commissioner Manish Bharadwaj said that the decision on the market area will be taken after the probe report reaches the VMC.

"We have found that the shops had all legal documents and permissions to run their business. But it is absolutely essential to rethink about the market area as it could have been worse if the fire had occurred in one of the interior lanes or in the night with no one to spot it immediately. We will certainly give a thought to bringing in measures to prevent such tragedies once the report reaches us in a couple of days."

The fire probe has been handed over to the police, which is now awaiting the report from the Forensic Science Laboratory (FSL) to ascertain the cause of fire. An officer from the city police station said, "The FSL team has collected samples from the fire site and will submit its findings after which action will be taken against anyone whose negligence may have caused the fire." Officials admit that fire in the shops that make the narrow lanes of the market would be difficult to douse. Chief Fire officer Hitesh Taparia said, "There are narrow lanes in all market areas in India and abroad. It is not practical to think that market lanes will be 12-feet wide roads. What should be our best plan is to mitigate the risk and minimise the problem."

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