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Surat fire tragedy: Gujarat govt hasn't learned from past tragedies, says SUCI

SUCI demonstration in Surat
By Our Representative
In a memorandum to Gujarat chief minister Vijay Rupani, the Socialist Unity Centre of India (SUCI), Gujarat, a political group, has said that the Takshshila fire tragedy in Surat, which has led to the death of 23 students, suggests that the Gujarat government has not learned any lesson over the last two years, during which period 11 incidents of fire tragedy leading to the loss of 27 lives took place in the city.
“Has your government learned any lessons from it? Or the same noise, same reaction of strict action by your government to forget it and to move on further?”, SUCI’s Meenakshi Joshi said, adding, “Every day, In our country there are 59 deaths due to fire incidents. This is much more than death due to terrorism or crime.”
Asserting that “fire safety norms are never complied in Gujarat”, Joshi said, “Three fire tragedies took place in past six months in Gujarat. Now after the incident in Takhshila tuition class, the government suddenly is awakened again to clamp down on tuition classes. On checking the flouters get notices but no actions are taken.”
“There is no provision at all to fight fire in many buildings. In Surat in last December 2018, seven tuition classes were closed for lack of fire safety. The fire tragedy killed one student and one teacher in Vesu locality of Surat. As per Surat Municiapal Commissioner more than 200 tuition classes were checked but Takshshila was not checked”, she said.
Calling it a black day, the memorandum said that “awarding Rs 4 lakh compensation for the dead is just an eyewash, insisting, it should be enhanced to Rs 25 lakh.” Pointing out that “the fire Brigade is in poor state”, the memorandum added, “During the Takshila fire incident it was found that the Fire Brigade does not have safety nets. The jumping students were caught by the brave people of Surat and saved many lives.”

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