MUMBAI: Employees of ESIC Kamgar Hospital in Mumbai on Tuesday protested against lack of adequate facilities at the government-run hospital. Eight people had been killed while 176 people, including three firemen, were injured in the fire at the hospital in Marol in suburban Andheri. The deceased even include a six-month-old girl.
Nearly 375 people, including patients and visitors, were in the five-floor hospital during visiting hours when fire and smoke were reported on its fourth floor around 4.03 pm on Monday. The injured have been admitted to nearby hospitals. Nearly 25 of the injured are critical while 26 were discharged after primary treatment. The hospital was constructed in the 1970s.
Several women with their newborns were seen rushing out of the building, wrapping the children in their arms. The building's glass facade posed a hindrance as it blocked air passage and firemen had to break the glasses on all the floors to evacuate those stranded inside.
The hospital does not even have the final no-objection certificate for fire compliance. Authorities said that the hospital had applied for the final NOC a fortnight ago for its under-construction building adjacent to the old structure that caught fire. But when the team visited the hospital for inspection, certain shortcomings were found in the installations due to which the full and final fire NOC was refused to the old building also.
The blaze appeared to have erupted after a short-circuit near the rubber rolls stored on the ground floor. The smoke then spread on the upper floors through an open fire duct. The exact cause would be known after an inquiry into the incident.