SRINAGAR, Mar 30: At least 7 shops were gutted in an overnight incident of fire that raged in the Zaina Kadal area of the old city last night.
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The officials of the Fire & Emergency Service told Excelsior that one shopping line, single-storied GCI sheet roofed was involved in the fire.
“In the shopping line, 7 shops dealing in cosmetic/ Hosiery items were involved in fire and sustained damage,” the officials said.
They said that the time of the call was 1: 00 am and as soon as they received the SOS, the personnel of the department rushed to the spot to douse down the flames.
The officials said that two other adjacent textile shops also sustained indirect damage due to heat smoke and water.
However, the locals said that the fire emerged around 11:15 pm and the fire tenders took time to reach the spot because there is no adjacent fire station in the Zaina Kadal area.
“The damage is in crores and the same was furthered by the fact that both the roads leading to the market remain blocked due to the CRPF camp; the personnel of fire and emergency had to first clear the blockade and only after that they could reach the spot; that consumed over 10 minutes and by then, the damage was done,” Abdul Majeed, Mohalla Committee President said.
The locals also said that there is an absence of a fire station near the market and the one that was there at S.R. Gunj has been shifted.
“It is a business hub in the entire Srinagar city. But there are no adjoining fire stations even as one at S.R. Gunj has been shifted and that has deteriorated the entire situation,” said Nazir Ahmad Shah of Sher-e-Khas Traders Coordination Committee, while demanding immediate compensation to the victims.
While the officials said that cause of the fire was under police investigation, the locals said that the cause was an electric short circuit.