9 Mar 2024

Madhya Pradesh: Massive fire erupts at Vallabh Bhavan Bhopal, largely brought under control by evening, 3 employees sustain burn injuries

A massive fire erupted at Vallabh Bhavan State Secretariat in Arera Hills, Bhopal, Madhya Pradesh, on Saturday, originating on the third floor of the building. Fire tenders were rushed to the spot to combat the blaze. 

The fire that erupted at the state secretariat Vallabh Bhawan has been largely brought under control by the evening. 

A contingent of 12 to 15 fire brigades, accompanied by police forces, was deployed to manage the situation.

The incident was first reported at 9:30 am on Saturday when a fire originated on the second floor of Vallabh Bhawan in Bhopal. Subsequently, the flames extended to the third, fourth, and fifth floors of the structure. Preliminary information suggests that a short circuit may be the cause of the fire, although an official announcement is pending.

In response to the situation, BJP MLA Bhagwandas Sabnani arrived at the secretariat to assess the ongoing developments. He attributed the fire to a short circuit, pending further official confirmation.

The incident occurred on the second Saturday of the month so there were not many employees. The limited number of present employees were removed from the premises but there are reports of at least 3 employees sustaining burn injuries. In addition to the Municipal Corporation's fire stations, BHEL Airport, and Army fire brigades were summoned to manage the situation. Army personnel accessed the Mantralaya building through the back entrance.

5 employees were evacuated

Fire personnel have safely rescued five employees trapped in the old building of the Mantralaya, although it has not been revealed whether some more employees are trapped inside the building or not. Police and Municipal Corporation staff are also not able to clearly tell whether these employees were already present in the ministry, or had reached inside the ministry to extinguish the fire and take out the documents safely.

Three employees burnt

Three employees are reported to have sustained burn injuries in this fire incident. The injured employees were sent to Jaypee Hospital by ambulance and admitted. The names of these employees are Shiva, Lakhan and Bablu. It is being told that Bablu first got trapped in the fire and Lakhan Rathoriya went inside to save him and he got burnt..

Thick blanket of smoke 

The massive blaze cast a thick blanket of smoke over the building, visible even from the top. The affected area was identified as the record room of the Chief Minister's Secretariat, where officials handle important documents related to the Chief Minister's responsibilities. Chief Secretary Veera Rana, Principal Secretary to the Chief Minister Raghavendra Singh, and other senior officers promptly arrived at the scene. The army has been called in to assist in controlling the fire.

SDRF team arrived

SDRF team has also reached the spot and started rescue work. Police force is also deployed at the spot. Zone-2 DCP Shraddha Tiwari said that the force had reached the spot immediately. All the fire brigades have been called. The fire on the second and third floors has been brought under control, efforts are on to extinguish the fire on the fourth floor. SDRF team has gone inside. If anyone is trapped inside, the process to rescue them is underway.

This fire in Vallabh Bhawan reminded people of the horrific fire in Satpura Bhawan last year. On June 12, 2023, a massive fire broke out in Satpura Bhawan located near Vallabh Bhawan. That fire could be controlled the next day. It took 20 firefighters to control the fire.

BJP govt set fire: Jitu Patwari

At around 1 pm, Congress State President Jitu Patwari and Leader of Opposition in the Assembly Umang Singhar reached Vallabh Bhavan. On this occasion, Jitu Patwari said that this fire did not start, but was set by the BJP government. After all, there have been four fire incidents in Vallabh Bhawan and Satpura. But why was no incident investigated? During this time, both the leaders had an argument with the security personnel when they were stopped from entering the Vallabh Bhawan premises and they sat on dharna at the gate itself.

Fire controlled: CM

Chief Minister Dr. Mohan Yadav has said that according to the information received, the fire in Vallabh Bhawan has been controlled. Collector Bhopal informed that a fire broke out in the old Vallabh Bhavan. The Chief Secretary has been instructed to monitor the incident. Every possible effort is being made to keep the papers and other essential resources safe. Efforts will be made to ensure that such incidents do not recur, he said.

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