DW BUREAU / Chandigarh
Local Government Minister Navjot Singh Sidhu on Sunday said that Punjab is all set to have a fire safety training centre equipped with the state of the art facilities.
Besides, a plan amounting to Rs 500 crore has been submitted to the Director General Fire, Civil Defence aimed at transforming the fire services sector in the state.
“The state has been assured of every possible assistance in this regard. Besides, a separate project worth Rs 262.50 crore has been submitted to the Union Urban Development Ministry, ” Mr Sidhu while interacting with the mediapersons.
Divulging more, the minister said that the fire services sector till date has been largely ignored which accounted for the numerous fire accidents in the state. He further said that shaken to the core due to these incidents, he instructed the department to prepare detailed project reports to redress the issue. Armed with the report, he recently met the Director General Fire, Civil Defence Prakash Mishra who after perusing the report said that it is for the first time that a minister from Punjab has sought funds for fire safety projects.
Mr Sidhu further added that the Director General concurred with the report seeking funds to the tune of Rs 500 crore and assured of every kind of assistance. Apart from this, on the spot approval was granted to the opening of a fire safety training centre. The minister also said that he also got a favourable response from the Union Minister of State for Urban Development Hardeep Puri to whom a separate project of Rs 262 crores was submitted.
Mr, Sidhu also elaborated that it was also decided in the meeting with the Director General that those small cities devoid of fire stations for parking of fire tenders would see these fire tenders being parked in the police stations of those areas and furthermore, fire volunteers would be employed for the purpose.
He further disclosed that special care would be taken by the Punjab Government to ensure that no fireman goes into the fire extinguishing operations without ultra modern fire suit.
He also added that fire prevention act would be enforced strictly to put a stop to the fire tragedies and those violating the act would be strictly proceeded against. Divulging more, he said that in the coming days, the Local Government Department would compile a list of the buildings violating the Fire Prevention Act in the State and the owners would get notices.
Mr Sidhu while detailing the project reports submitted to the Union Government said that in the report sent to the Director General a case has been made out for Rs 270 crore concerning fire stations, Rs 86 crore for aerial ladders, Rs 60 crore for advance rescue tender, Rs 18 crores for fire suits, Rs 20 crore for quick response vehicles, Rs 23 crore for training centre, Rs 5 crore for creating awareness regarding fire safety, Rs 3 crore for fire audit and Rs. 5 crore for civil defence. Similarly, in the report submitted to the Union Minister of State for Urban Development, a case has been made out for Rs 144 crore for fire tenders, Rs 78 crore for aerial ladder (T.T.L.), Rs 20 crore for Rescue Tender, Rs 17.60 crore for Kits and Rs 3 crore for Life Saving Equipments.