Massive fire destroys almost 200 shops in Jorhat’s Chowkbazar
On the evening of February 16th, 2023, a massive fire erupted in the Chowkbazar of Jorhat Town, Assam, leaving almost 200 shops completely destroyed. The fire is yet to be completely extinguished, and the Fire Department has deployed several teams to the affected area to control the fire.
While the cause of the incident is still unknown, initial reports suggest that it may have been caused by an electrical short circuit at one of the shops. The flame rapidly spread through the market, causing extensive damage to the shops that were mainly selling grocery items and clothes. Over 25 fire tenders were rushed to the bazaar to fight the flames, but the size of the destruction made it difficult for the fire-fighters to control it.
Thankfully, there have been no reports of any casualties, as all the shops were closed, and their owners and staff had left for their homes before the fire erupted. The police officers, who are present at the site, are closely monitoring the situation and are making sure that no one enters the area.
Allegations of pre-planned fire in Chowk Bazar
The incident has caused a stir in the local community, with many locals alleging that it was a pre-planned fire to clear the small shops and make way for a large multiplex. However, there is no evidence to support this claim, and the police officers are investigating the matter to ascertain the cause of this incident.
Response of government officials
The Minister for Revenue and Disaster Management, Jogen Mohan, has reached the spot to assess the losses that have been incurred by the shopkeepers. The officer stated that the assessment of losses would be made during the day, and the shopkeepers would be provided with necessary assistance to cope with their losses.
This is the second such incident that has occurred in Jorhat in two months, with the previous incident occurring in December 2022, where a similar major incident had gutted several shops in the Marwari Patty area. The incident had caused a significant loss to the shopkeepers, who had struggled to recover from their losses.
The incident has once again raised questions about the safety measures that are in place to prevent such incidents from happening. The lack of proper fire safety measures in the shops has been cited as one of the primary reasons for the rapid spread of the fire. The incident has also highlighted the need for proper fire safety training for shopkeepers to prevent such incidents from happening in the future.
The incident has caused a significant loss to the local economy, with the destruction of almost 200 shops causing financial distress to many shopkeepers who were already struggling to cope with the economic downturn caused by the pandemic. The incident has also caused a sense of insecurity among the local shopkeepers, who fear that their shops may be destroyed in a similar incident.
In conclusion, the incident highlights the need for proper fire safety measures to prevent such incidents from happening in the future. The local authorities need to take adequate measures to ensure the safety of the shopkeepers and the public in the area. It is also important to provide necessary assistance to the shopkeepers to help them recover from their losses and prevent them from facing financial distress. The incident is a wake-up call for the authorities to ensure the safety and well-being of the local community.