Burrabazaar fire, Calcutta

The Burrabazaar fire is interesting. Having been involved with disaster management at Mumbai Helpline in 2007 the following thoughts instinctively came to my mind in order of occurrence:

1) Same old story. Old area of the city. Traders wouldn’t care much. They will not spend one crore on installing fire safety equipment and other measures but will then suffer damages worth hundreds of crores.

2) Its so ironical that the Ganga with all its water is just a kilometer from the site and yet there was not enough water to handle the fire. Again a complete lack of any foresight during peace time when everybody is busy making the crores.

3) I come to my pet whipping horse – cricket. everybody in the market would have had enough time to discuss that stupid tamasha called India cricket and watch it during office hours also but not enough time to apply their minds to planning for safety.

4) After the initial thoughts my mind started brewing conspiracies. A lot of such fires also take place to destroy incriminating documents. Being a business place these could pertain to excise or income tax evasion.

5) Could there be a real estate angle to the matter? Is some real estate group eyeing the place.

I would like to be in touch with anybody from the traders association in Burra bazaar and discuss their viewpoints in detail on the same. If possible I am willing to lend my services for developing some plan in the future.

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