Haryana chief minister Manohar Lal Khattar has approved a proposal by the Municipal Corporation of Gurugram (MCG) to use its funds to procure a 100-metre hydraulic ladder for the city on a priority basis. In a city of over 1,200 high-rises, the Gurugram fire department only has a solitary 42-metre fire ladder capable of reaching only the fourteenth floor of a building. Gurugram has several skyscrapers measuring around 175 metres.
As per IS Kashyap, assistant divisional fire safety office (ADFSO), the Haryana government, earlier this month, had given approval to procure five 42-metre fire ladders for Gurugram when a state-level discussion was held on fire preparedness for all the districts in Haryana. Following the intervention of the Haryana CM, it was altered to a 100-metre fire ladder.
In Gurugram, the local fire department comes under the ambit of the MCG.“The Haryana CM has authorised MCG to procure a 100-metre fire ladder using its own funds. Earlier, the proposal from the government’s own side was for authorising the procurement of only five hydraulic platforms for the city. The government has given such an approval exclusively for Gurugram,” said Kashyap.
Kashyap added that such a ladder is only manufactured by a Finland-based company and it would cost around ₹30 crore to purchase. Kashyap said that although a private developer has a fire ladder equipped to reach such heights and can be called upon in case of an emergency the time spent in coordination can lead to a massive delay.
“Although we have an understanding with all private firms in the district for helping each other out during any fire, we cannot afford to both spend time and rely on anyone else for procuring a 100-metre ladder as it can lead to a considerable delay in dousing or rescue operations. We need it readily available and hence, it is required on an urgent basis,” said Kashyap.
The fire department’s demand for a 100-metre ladder has been pending since 2008. In last year’s state budget, Khattar had announced that all of Haryana’s municipal corporations, including MCG, will each get new fire ladders. “Saving lives and bettering the lives of citizens have always been MCG’s priority. All necessary procedures have been initiated to procure a new fire ladder and strengthen the local fire department,” said Vinay Pratap Singh, commissioner, MCG. Kashyap said that although the MCG’s funds will be used for the procurement of the ladder, the paperwork and other formalities for approaching the Finland-based company will be done through the Haryana directorate of supplies and disposal