A major fire broke out during a ‘Make in India’ programme at Girgaum Chowpatty, Mumbai on Sunday. The whole stage, where a cultural performance was going on, was gutted in fires.
Around seven-eight thousand people were present at the venue which also included some foreign guests. Minutes before the fire broke out, Amitabh Bachchan, Maharastra CM Devendra Fadnavis and Shiv Sena Chief Uddhav Thackrey were present at the same venue where the fire broke out.
However, no causality has been reported by now.
“The fire was uncontrollable, luckily people have been evacuated. The authorities worked very quickly. It was unfortunate, but everybody got out safe including VVIPs, 20,000 to 25,000 people were there. Suddenly the fire broke out. Luckily, the fire exits were clearly defined,” said Poonam Mahajan was quoted saying.
The area has been evacuated and an operation is under way to douse the flame. According to eyewitnesses, the fire was caused by fire crackers.
"I was there at the event because Mr Bachchan was reciting my poem. As soon as the recital got over, I left the venue and another event started and suddenly the fire broke out. I was out looking for my car when this happned, hope everyone is safe,” said Prasoon Joshi.
The disaster management plan put in place ensured the safe passage of the people attending the event—“Maharashtra Rajni”, Fadnavis, who personally monitored the evacuation operation from the venue, said.
The blaze was brought under control in quick time by 14 fire engines and 10 water tankers with swift evacuation of thousands of people.
The exact cause of the fire that broke out one hour after the entertainment segment had begun was not known but state BJP spokesman Atul Shah, who was seated in the front row, said the fire apparently broke out from beneath the stage.
There were already issues related to performances at this venue.
Supreme Court on Wednesday stayed a Bombay High Court order and allowed the Maharashtra government the programme at this venue.
A bench comprising Justices M Y Eqbal and Arun Mishra had allowed the submission of Attorney General Mukul Rohatgi, appearing for the state, that the proposed function is “India’s pride” and the administration does not propose to raise any permanent structure at the beach site.