Kochi's popular destination, Oberon Mall was closed down on Thursday by the Cochin Corporation. The mall was functioning without required safety measures in place. Following a fire in the mall's food court on May 16, the Corporation had issued a stop memo to the mall to stop functioning till a security check was completed.
But disregarding the memo, the mall resumed functioning after the damage done by the fire was dealt with. The Corporation had asked the mall to be re-opened only after it procures a fitness certificate from the Fire and Safety Department. Following news reports of Oberon mall being re-opened, a petition was filed at High Court seeking interference in to the issue.
Following this, the Kerala High Court questioned Cochin Corporation, and asked why the mall was functioning despite the stop memo. Meanwhile, an inquiry done by the Corporation found that there were not enough safety measures in the mall.
On Thursday, the Corporation secretary informed the court that the mall would be closed immediately. Later, Corporation officials went to the mall and sealed it.
The High Court has also asked the Corporation and the mall to sort out the security measures. The HC instructed the Fire and Safety Department to inspect if all measures were in place.
The fire had broken out on the fourth floor of the building from where a food court was functioning. The fire started from the kitchen of a restaurant functioning inside the food court. As soon as the fire started, people were asked to rush out through the emergency doors.
The restaurant kitchen from where the fire started was fully gutted.