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Surat Fire Tragedy: Coaching centre owner held; CM Vijay Rupani orders fire safety audit of schools, colleges

Surat Fire tragedy: Visiting the site of the tragedy, Rupani said the audit would find out if educational establishments in the state have proper equipment and facilities to deal with fire incidents

twitter-logo PTI        Last Updated: May 25, 2019  | 12:03 IST
Surat Fire Tragedy: Coaching centre owner held; CM Vijay Rupani orders fire safety audit of schools, colleges
Surat Fire tragedy: The accused coaching class owner has been identified as Bhargav Butani, and the builders as Harshul Vekaria and Jignesh Paliwal.

Police have arrested the owner of the Surat coaching centre in which a massive fire had erupted Friday claiming lives of 20 persons, mostly teenage students.

Two builders of the commercial Takshashila Complex in Sarthana area, the site of the inferno, are on the run, Surat Police Commissioner Satish Sharma told reporters Saturday.

"Police registered an FIR under various sections (of the Indian Penal Code) against three persons last night. They include two builders and the owner of the coaching class. We have arrested one person. 20 persons have so far died in the incident," he said.

The accused coaching class owner has been identified as Bhargav Butani, and the builders as Harshul Vekaria and Jignesh Paliwal.

"We have already arrested Butani. Hunt is on to nab the remaining two," Sharma said.

Gujarat Chief Minister Vijay Rupani Friday ordered a fire safety audit of schools, colleges and coaching centres following a massive blaze which engulfed a four-storey commercial complex in Sarthana here, killing at least 19 teenage students, many of whom jumped and fell to their deaths while some were suffocated.

Visiting the site of the tragedy, Rupani said the audit would find out if educational establishments in the state have proper equipment and facilities to deal with fire incidents.

He said the fire audit would also cover hospitals, malls and other commercial buildings of major cities and towns in the state.

"Nineteen youngsters, all in their 20s, have died in the fire incident here. I'm told these youngsters were trapped in the building as the fire destroyed the staircase. Around three to four died after they jumped off the building," he said.

"We have already ordered an inquiry into the incident. To avoid such tragic incidents, I have asked officials to conduct fire safety audit of all schools, colleges, hospitals, malls and other commercial buildings. We will check if they have proper fire fighting equipment," Rupani told reporters.

He added that the state government has brought in forensic experts to find the exact cause of the fire.

Also Read: Surat Fire Updates: 19 dead at Takshashila Complex as helpless kids, teens jump off building

Also Read: Surat fire: PM Modi, Rajnath Singh, Vijay Rupani extend condolences to victims

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