State nod to Rs 2cr fire safety plan for Bhandara hospital
Mumbai, Feb 23, 2021
Mumbai: The public health department led by Rajesh Tope on Monday approved a Rs2-crore fire safety plan for Bhandara district hospital following the January 9 tragedy where 10 infants died after a blaze swept through the neonatal care unit.
The public health department had drawn flak for mismanagement at all levels as well as lack of equipment in the hospital to tackle the fire.
Following the incident, chief minister Uddhav Thackeray had visited the hospital, and ordered a high-level probe into the incident as well as a fire audit.
Preliminary probe has been completed and nursing staff has been blamed for the tragedy, following which a case of culpable homicide not amounting to murder has been registered against two staff members of the hospital. It was also found that fire prevention measures were grossly inadequate, as a result of which it took a long time to control the fire following a short circuit.
A senior bureaucrat said the tragedy served as a wake-up call on the urgent need to equip the hospital with fire-safety measures. “The public health department has sanctioned Rs 2 crore for providing better fire prevention equipment. I am sure, along with the Bhandara hospital, the government will take note of the condition of fire prevention equipment in hospitals across the state,’’ he said.