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2 months ago

Fire Fury In Kashmir: Property Worth Rs 560 Cr Lost In 6 Years

KO File Photo By Abid Bhat

The fire incidents have witnessed an abrupt spike in the ongoing spring season—turning hundreds of houses and commercial buildings to ashes.

Srinagar- As frequent fire incidents continue to ravage Kashmir Valley’s already shattered economy after back to back lockdowns, official data has revealed that flames have consumed property worth a whopping Rs 560 crore in the last six years alone.

The fire incidents have witnessed an abrupt spike in the ongoing spring season—turning hundreds of houses and commercial buildings to ashes.

Data available with Kashmir Observer reveals that the Valley witnessed over the department of Fire and Emergency received over 660 calls in the first three months of this year, which according to the department is huge and might break the record of last three years if the situation remains same.

The data suggested that the fire caused a whopping loss of around Rs 560 crore to the people in the Valley in the last six years.

In Srinagar district only, the data suggests a clear spike in the fire incidents in the first three months of the ongoing year.

According to the data, the department received over 39 fire calls in which 21 residential houses, nine shops and one shopping complex, one vehicle, six electricity transformers got damaged in the month of January only. The property worth Rs 2,85, 53,000 got damaged.

In the next month, the fire calls increased to 49 in which 14 residential houses, two shops and three shopping complex got damaged. The property worth 1,78,40,00 got damaged in the month of February.

In the month of March, the department received over 52 fire calls in which 58 residential houses, two shops and six shopping complexes were damaged. The property worth Rs 12,40,65,500 got damaged.

Similarly, in the year 2021, over 354 structures including 60 shops and 20 shopping complexes got damaged during different fire incidents, which was highest from any district of Kashmir, the data reveals.

The data clearly indicates the fire incidents in Srinagar city are on rise.

The data further reveals that in the first three months over 525 structures, 99 shops and 11 shopping complexes turned into ashes due to the fire, besides causing a whopping loss of around Rs 36 crore to the people in the Valley.

Deputy Director, Fire and Emergency services (Kashmir) Bashir Ahmed Shah told Kashmir Observer that the congestion in the city is one of the main reasons that it witnessed the highest number of fire incidents.

“What can we do in these circumstances,” Shah said.

He further added that the people don’t let them work and act as spectators in the area which witnesses the fire incidents.

“Few days ago our men faced the wrath of people and they had to hide their gadgets so that the people wouldn’t identify them,” Shah said.

Since the last six years, the Valley has witnessed over 15,593 fire incidents. The year 2021 witnessed over 2242 incidents, while 2336 fire incidents were reported in 2020.

While 1812 fire incidents were reported in 2019, a year earlier in 2018, 2741 incidents of blaze were witnessed. In year 2017 and 2016, 2914 and 3548 fire incidents were reported, respectively.

The officials said that many structures got damaged due to fire during different encounters between militants and government forces.

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Auqib Javeed

Auqib Javeed is special correspondent with Kashmir Observer and tweets @AuqibJaveed
Auqib Javeed

Auqib Javeed is special correspondent with Kashmir Observer and tweets @AuqibJaveed

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