ITANAGAR- ( By Pradeep Kumar )- In a shocking incident, 700 shops of Daily Market in Naharlagun, the oldest market of Arunachal Pradesh, were reduced to ashes by a devastating fire incident that reportedly broke out at around 4 am on Tuesday.
The fire station and police station located just opposite the Daily Market here swung into action. But the fire spread very fast due to dry items of the market, particularly the structures made of bamboo and timber, and got intensified by busting of few LPG cylinders.
The shop owners tried to pull out and save their merchandise which were lying on road around the market while fire personnel using three fire tenders, one from Itanagar fire station, fought for four hours till 9 am to douse the fire.
Police personnel led by Capital Region SP Jimmy Chiram, Naharlagun SDPO Dekia Gumja and ADC Jiken Bomjen supervised the fire fighting operation.
When asked about the suspected cause of the fire incident, SP Chiram refused to comment and said that the cause would be known after completion of investigation by the fire department.
The agonized shop keepers along with hundreds of onlookers watched helplessly as the fire rose to height with smoke rising to sky and busting of bamboo herd from a long distance.
They were pushed by the police to distance as burning bamboos were being thrown out from the firing spot. But the fire fighting operation continued unperturbed by the firemen.
While the victimized shop keepers claimed that “the fire was spotted around 3.30 am when few of them rushed to the fire station but no fireman was on duty. When they came, there was no water in fire tenders and had to go a long distance for refilling and came around 5 am that spread the fire.
The police personnel also did not act. Thus, all of them should be terminated from service for failure to perform their duties”. Naharlagun Bazar Welfare Committee president Kipa Nai, who also supervised fire fighting operation, supported the version of fire victims in toto.
Arunachal Chamber of Commerce and Industries (ACC&I) president Tarh Nachung and secretary general Toko Tatung, after hearing grievances of the fire victims, told media persons that all fire personnel on duty should be suspended for negligence to their duties.
The duo, flanked by vice president Rajesh Rinwa, IPR secretary Techi Peko and treasurer Govind Rathi, Govt should learn from today’s accident and water filling points for fire fighting operations should be immediately constructed at different locations in twin Capital Complex.
Meanwhile, Many shop owners besides their merchandises have also lost their residences for which the state government should offer them relief in cash and kind immediately besides rebuilding the entire market structure.
“Apprising Home Minister Bamang Felix telephonically from the spot about the whole incident, particularly negligence of firemen and delay in fire fighting for want of water filling points,” Nachung disclosed that he sought his intervention for immediate action.
Announcing ACC&I Relief Committee headed by IPR secretary Techi Peko with joint secretaries Tab Rak and Tuk Tabin as members, Nachung said anyone intending to contribute voluntarily for the victim may approach the committee.
Itanagar MLA Techi Kaso, who arrived at the spot, told reports that the destroyed structures of the Daily Market would be rebuilt by the state government in cooperation with ACCI&I.