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Surat tragedy: Coaching institutes in Delhi's Karol Bagh to be surveyed

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Press Trust of India New Delhi
North Delhi Municipal Corporation (NDMC) has decided to survey coaching institutes operating in public buildings in the Karol Bagh Zone to assess compliance of civic and building safety norms, following the devastating blaze in Surat that killed 20 students at a coaching complex.
An official of the civic body said a team has already been constituted and the survey will begin in a few days.
"The team will be led by the Deputy Health Officer (DHO) of the zone. Members of the team will visit premises of the coaching institutes and assess compliance of norms. They will also ask if the fire safety norms are in place with the owners of buildings housing such institutes," the senior official told PTI.
"And, after the survey, we will discuss all issues and take corrective or preventive actions, as needed," he said.
A number of coaching institutes are located in Karol Bagh and adjacent Rajinder Nagar, and the areas are popular among outstation students as affordable places to stay in the national capital.
"In the survey, we will find out how many such coaching institutes are operating, how many students in each institute, the batch timings for classes, and the building plans of the complexes in which they are operating, whether such activities are permitted in that building or not, among other details," the official said.
"Based on the seriousness of the report after the survey, we will take the matter to a higher level of discussion in the NDMC," he added.
Aspirants from across India come to the national capital to prepare for competitive examinations. Areas like Laxmi Nagar, Mukherjee Nagar, Kalu Sarai, Ber Sarai, Jia Sarai, Munirka and Karol Bagh are home to several coaching centres.
Twenty-two students, including 18 girls, of an art and craft coaching institute were killed in the devastating fire that engulfed the four-storey Takshashila Arcade in Sarthana area of Surat on May 24.
In the wake of the Surat tragedy, the Delhi government Monday directed the city's fire department to take immediate action for "closing down" coaching institutes operating above the fourth floor in buildings in violation of fire safety norms.
In February, a massive blaze at Hotel Arpit Palace in Karol Bagh had claimed lives of 17 people, and prompting Delhi Fire Service authorities to conduct inspection of over 300 hotels in the area.
On Monday, the East Delhi Municipal Corporation had conducted a survey of buildings housing 37 coaching institutes in Laxmi Nagar area of Shahdara (South) Zone of the EDMC, and 27 of them were issued notices for "violation of building safety norms".

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First Published: May 28 2019 | 10:20 PM IST

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