A total of 12 furniture shops and one tea stall and items worth crores inside it were gutted in a major fire at the Sector 53 furniture market on Wednesday.
A total of nine fire tenders – seven from Chandigarh and two from Mohali – rushed to douse the fire. The rescue work was on during the filing of this report.
Ankush Garg, the owner of one of the gutted shops, said, “It was around 4.30 pm when the fire broke out. Many of the shopkeepers were standing outside their shops when the fire spread all of a sudden. It hardly took five minutes for it to engulf the shops that are in one row. We suspect that furniture items worth crores of rupees were gutted in the fire incident. No one was hurt.”
The fire department along with the local police have started the probe to ascertain the reason behind the fire.
A fire department officer said, “Though the exact reason behind the fire can not be ascertained at this moment, short circuit cannot be ruled out. One of the reasons behind the fire spreading instantly can be the presence of inflammable material in the shape of paint, varnish, thinner, dry wood, foam, mattresses, etc. The fire has largely been brought under control but we have not called back the rescue operation as there is still some being emitted. We have decided to station two fire tenders at the furniture market for the next 48 hours.”
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“Furniture market has become prone to fire incidents and are reported every other year. There are at least 118 furniture shop in the market, which is one of the biggest furniture markets in the region. We appealed to the local administration to provide us with necessary help”, Sanjeev Kumar, official bearer of the furniture market welfare association, said.
Chandigarh BJP President Arun Sood, Mayor Sarabjit Kaur and MC Joint Commissioner-cum-Chief Fire Officer Rohit Gupta rushed to the spot. They assured the shopkeepers for all possible help.
In December 2018, 26 shops had burned down in a fire incident at the Market.