SUM Hospital denies lapses in fire safety measures
Bhubaneswar, Oct 18 (IANS) The SUM Hospital authorities on Tuesday denied that there were lapses on the management’s part that led to the loss of 20 lives.
It, however, suspended four persons for the fire incident.
“We have put four officials under suspension following the fire incident. They have been suspended pending inquiry. However, the suspension does not mean that they are guilty. Only a thorough inquiry would reveal the actual cause of the incident,” said Amit Banerjee, Vice Chancellor of the SUM Hospital and Medical College.
Those put under suspension for reported dereliction of duty are the fire officer, manager and two others staffers.
He said the exact reason behind the unfortunate incident will be known only after the investigation committee submits its report.
Banerjee also announced Rs 5 lakh compensation to the kin of each deceased.
He said steps are being taken to provide free treatment to the injured.
Meanwhile, services have resumed at the hospital except in the ICU, dialysis and emergency wards, which were sealed by the state government for investigation, said the Vice Chancellor.
Fire Safety DG Binay Behera, who inspected the fire safety measures of the hospital, informed that a 2013 audit report had found lapses in the fire safety measures.
The audit report had warned the SUM Hospital of lapses and asked it to rectify those. But the hospital did not respond to the Fire Department, said a fire official.
“We will submit a detailed report to the government after the inquiry is done,” said Behera.