In a startling revelation that exposes the fire safety in hospitals, the Ahmedabad Municipal Corporation (AMC) has issued a list of 287 private hospitals that do not have a fire no-objection certificate (NOC). Apart from these private hospitals, the state-run Sola Civil Hospital too is devoid of a fire NOC.
The revelation assumes significance especially after the devastating fire in Navrangpura’s Shrey Hospital and Rajkot’s Uday Shivanand Hospital. Following these fire accidents, the Gujarat government faced severe criticism in the Gujarat High Court as well as the Supreme Court.
The court in its direction has said that hospitals, which do not have FIR NOC, will have to take it within four weeks. It had also asked the government to initiate action against the hospitals that fail to secure a fire NOC within four weeks.
Many hospitals located in western Ahmedabad
The list released by AMC provides that many of the hospitals that have not secured fire NOC are located in the western part of the city.
Over a hundred such hospitals are located along SG Highway, Thaltej, Sola, Ghatlodia and Vastrapur. These hospitals have been asked to immediately secure a fire NOC by meeting all the safety norms.
These hospitals have been also instructed not to admit new patients till they secure the fire NOC.
Shrey Hospital fire
The ICU unit on the fourth floor of Shrey Hospital caught fire on August 6 at 3.30 am. The fire ended up killing eight people, all of them COVID-19 patients. The hospital was a dedicated COVID-19 facility.
The rest of the patients were shifted to SVP Hospital. Later it emerged that the hospital had not bothered to renew its fire NOC.
Reports also said that it did not have a functioning fire safety system in place and only had a few fire extinguishers. Leader of Opposition in the AMC Dinesh Sharma said the fourth floor of the hospital was illegally constructed and later regularised under the Impact Fee Rule.
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