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  Metros   Mumbai  11 Dec 2016  BMC seeks police probe into Dahisar mangrove fire

BMC seeks police probe into Dahisar mangrove fire

THE ASIAN AGE. | NEHA L.M. TRIPATHI
Published : Dec 11, 2016, 4:18 am IST
Updated : Dec 11, 2016, 7:23 am IST

The letter, in possession with this paper, demands to find out the reason behind this major fire.

File photo of the fire, and a grab of the report published in The Asian Age.
 File photo of the fire, and a grab of the report published in The Asian Age.

Mumbai: The ward officer of R North ward has sought probes, including a police probe, into the fire that broke out in Dahisar (east) on December 7 and was doused only the next afternoon. The letter, in possession with this paper, demands to find out the reason behind this major fire, suspecting it was done on purpose to destroy the mangrove land.

The letter was written by the ward officer of R North ward Vijay Kamble to sub-divisional officer, Mangroves Cell, and the senior police inspector of Dahisar on Friday. It stated that the residents of the area where the fire broke out behind Ashish Complex in Dahisar East were facing breathing issues due to continuous emission of smoke even after the fire was doused.

On December 7 around 6 pm, some residents of the area witnessed the fire that broke out in the wetlands. Soon, fire engines and water tenders from the Mira Bhayander fire station rushed to the spot to douse the fire. According to the letter, it was only around 11 pm that the BMC officials reached the spot. The fire, which was brought under control by the morning of December 8, was doused only after 3 pm the same day. According to residents, however, the cooling process took more time. Shiv Sena corporator Sheetal Mhatre, who brought the fire to the notice of the local ward officers, said she too believed that the mangroves were set afire for a hidden purpose and found the incident suspicious. Mrs. Mhatre said, “The fire tenders and water tanks couldn’t reach out to the spot as it isn’t accessible to people. We had to make way with the help of JCBs that took time. As a result, before and after the dousing of the fire the residents had to face smoke, which led to breathing issues among them. ”  

Harish Pandey, president of New Link Road Residents Forum (NLRRF), claimed that mangrove patches are slowly being destroyed in order to eventually claim them by showing there is no mangrove belt, so that construction plans can go ahead.

Mr Kamble in the letter has asked the Mangrove Cell, sub-divisional officer and the senior police inspector to probe the matter respectively and inform the ward about the findings of the same. Despite several attempts Mr. Kamble was unavailable for comment.

Tags: mangrove land, bmc, fire, nlrrf
Location: India, Maharashtra, Mumbai (Bombay)