Edu bodies in below-9 metre tall buildings sans basements need not obtain fire safety, NOC: Gujarat

Educational institutes located in buildings up to nine metres in height and without basements in Gujarat will not be required to obtain the mandatory fire safety NOC from local authorities but instead, they will have to submit a self-certified document, the state government has said. Such educational institutes will have to get the self-attested, self-certified fire No Objection Certificate (NOC) ensuring they have put in place all the fire safety systems as per the prescribed rules, an official release said, adding this decision was taken at a meeting chaired by Chief Minister Vijay Rupani.

The self-certified fire NOC will have to be reported to the officer of the Education Department in the concerned town, city or district, it said. The government has also decided to add six new fire regions in Gujarat to expand the coverage of fire services in the state.
In addition to eight metros in the state, six more fire regions will be set up, one each in the jurisdiction of the Regional Commissioner of Municipalities in the districts of Ahmedabad, Surat, Vadodara, Gandhinagar, Rajkot and Bhavnagar, it said. A senior IAS officer will act as the fire officer of these fire regions.

Buildings are required to obtain fire safety NOC from the competent authorities after implementing the norms laid down for the fire safety system. The Chief Fire Officer of the municipal corporation will also issue fire NOC for the areas including those falling under the Urban Development Authority of the respective corporation, the release said. The government said a building should not be denied a fire safety NOC even when it fulfils all the provisions only for not having the required Building Use (BU) permission from local authorities.

Concerned officials of the fire service should understand that issuing a fire NOC is required for a building to obtain BU permission, it said. If a building meets fire safety provisions, it does not require BU permission to get the fire NOC, the government said.

The government has also decided to give the authority and powers to issue fire NOCs in municipal areas to fire officers concerned in place of the director of the fire services, to expedite the process of issuance of the fire NOC. The government”s decisions come days after the Gujarat High Court pulled it up over the issue of fire safety in buildings and establishments in the state.