The state fire department has sent a notice to the management of the Priya movie theatre asking them to make certain alterations to comply with fire safety norms.
The conditions set by the fire department will have to be fulfilled to obtain a no objection certificate (NOC) in order to resume running shows in the theatre.
The state fire department on Thursday sent a notice to the authorities of Priya Entertainment Ltd asking them to fulfil certain conditions in order to obtain a NOC for running shows again inside the theatre that caught fire on Sunday while it was running its night show.
Five fire tenders were sent to the spot and rescued people who were inside the hall during the incident. Confusion prevails as to where the fire began.
The managing director of Priya Entertainment Ltd, Mr Arijit Dutta, maintained his claim that the fire had started from an eatery on the ground floor while the state fire department, after preliminary investigation, deduced that the fire started on the upper floors in an office room and that there are lapses in complying with fire safety norms.
The state fire services minister, Mr Sovan Chatterjee, stated that the place where the fire started looked more like a control room than a momo stall.
On Thursday, however, Mr Dutta said: “We have received a notice from the state fire department asking us to fulfil certain conditions in order to be able to start running shows once again. They have asked us to make certain alterations in the layout of the building, including making changes in the seating arrangements, entry/exit points and the surrounding areas. I cannot say when the theatre will reopen again and start running shows after incorporating all the alterations. Meanwhile, those who have already made advanced bookings from Monday will receive a refund.”
Commenting on the lapses in the fire safety norms of the theatre as claimed by the fire department, Mr Dutta said: “If there were indeed such loopholes in complying with the fire safety norms, how did the fire department issue us a NOC in May and not point it out to us before issuing the certificate?”
The fire services minister said: “We will not compromise with safety of citizens and will take all necessary steps to ensure that such movie theatres comply with the fire safety norms. I have also ordered an inspection drive in all old cinema theatres in the city to check whether they are complying with fire safety norms.”