Friday, July 19, 2024

Satpura Bhawan fire in MP due to ‘short circuit’, says probe panel

The fire incident in Madhya Pradesh government’s office — Satpura Bhawan — was due to a ‘short circuit’, the probe committee formed to investigate the matter said in its report.

The probe panel headed by the Additional Chief Secretary (Home), Rajesh Rajora, also ruled out the possibility of any ‘suspicious’ person behind the incident.

In its 287-page report submitted to the Chief Minister Shivraj Singh Chouhan on Monday, the probe panel has estimated a loss of Rs 24 crore due to the fire incident.

The findings of the probe panel was based on the statements of 32 persons (employees of Satpura Bhawan) and the samples collected from the spot.

According to the State’s Home Minister Narottam Mishra, the samples collected from the spot were tested from the forensic science laboratory in Sagar district.

“Fire broke due to short circuit in the closed office of Deputy Director of Tribal Welfare Department, Veerendra Singh, on the third floor of the building,” Mishra, who is also the spokesperson of the Madhya Pradesh government, said in a statement on Monday.

According to the Minister, probe committee has collected eight samples of flammable hydrocarbon (petrol, diesel and kerosene) from the spot.

“All these samples are under safe protection for any further investigation in the future. The report suggested that fire occured due to short circuit and no suspicious person is involved in it,” Mishra added.

On June 12, a massive fire at the Satpura Bhawan broke out, which doused after more than 13 hours of firefighting.

The blaze started on June 12 evening and was extinguished by June 13 morning. No casualties were reported as officials safely evacuated every person before the massive fire spread at the Satpura Bhawan in Bhopal.

However, the opposition Congress has raised apprehension and has demanded a judicial inquiry into the matter.

“The question arises whether the fire occurred by itself or was it intentional. As of now, they (state government) claim 1,2000 files burnt, but this number could be more. The matter should be investigated through an independent agency,” former Chief Minister and state Congress Chief Kamal Nath said on June 13.

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