A 30-year-old security guard fell to death from the balcony of a 19th floor flat, trying to cling on for his life after a major fire broke out in a 61-storey residential building in central Mumbai on Friday, October 22. The fire broke out in the One Avighna Park residential building on Currey Road around noon, with thick clouds of smoke billowing out, sending the residents scurrying out to safety. One panic-stricken man was seen coming out of the burning floor, hanging onto a ledge, losing balance and falling to his death below. He was identified as Arun Tiwari, 30, according to the BMC (Brihanmumbai Municipal Corporation) Disaster Control.
The fire brigade declared it as a level-4 (major) fire. At least 15 fire tenders rushed to the spot and battled the conflagration, attempting to stop the flames from spreading to the higher floors, while Mumbai Mayor Kishori Pednekar went and oversaw the rescue operations. Authorities said that most of the residents have been rescued without major injuries.
"After the fire broke out, Arun Tiwari, a security guard of the building, rushed to the 19th floor. Soon he realised that he was trapped and in order to save himself from the blaze, he kept hanging from the balcony of the flat where the fire had erupted. He precariously clung to the railing of the balcony for several minutes before losing his grip and falling to death," a fire brigade official said. After Tiwari fell to the ground, he was rushed to the civic-run KEM hospital, where he was declared dead, he added.
Talking to reporters, Municipal Commissioner Iqbal Singh Chahal said the fire has been doused and the cooling operation is on. An inquiry will be carried out into the incident, he said. The cause of the blaze is tentatively believed to be due to a short-circuit. Residents claimed that the building reportedly had all fire safety measures in place.
With PTI and IANS inputs