CHENNAI: Almost a month after four people including two children died of asphyxiation in a fire that broke out in the parking lot of a building sealed by the Corporation, police arrested the owner on Monday.
Vijayakumar, a local politician affiliated to the ruling AIADMK, was nabbed by the police near Kodambakkam.
This arrest comes six days after the state Minister for Finance Jayakumar told the press when he visited the scene of fire that broke out at Chennai Silks in T Nagar that necessary action would be taken against owners who constructed building against norms.
The investigation officer said that since May 8, the day the incident was reported, Vijayakumar had been absconding. “On Monday, we got a tip-off that he was near Kodambakkam where we arrested the man under section 304(ii)IPC.” He has been produced in a local court and remanded in judicial custody.
On May 8, a suspected short circuit in the parking space caused fire in the building and the smoke that reached the second floor killed four people who were sleeping.
The tragic incident raised the question how the building despite being sealed was allowed to function. The Madras High Court had directed the Corporation to seal the building on the grounds of building plan violation. Vijayakumar had allegedly obtained permission for the construction of a two-storey building originally but had gone on to raise two more floors in 2004 in violation of the norms.
The Corporation had also come under fire following the incident for not monitoring the sealed buildings. Consequently, a Corporation engineer was suspended.
Soon after the incident, the police registered a case and had launched a search for the suspect.
Asleep on second floor
On May 8, a suspected short circuit in the parking space caused fire in a building and the smoke that reached the second floor killed four people who were sleeping. The tragic incident raised the question how the building despite being sealed by Corporation was allowed to function.