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by Debarshi Mukherjee
16th September 2018A major fire broke out at Kolkata's Bagree Market: one of the largest wholesale markets in India. Around 35 fire engines battled for more than fifty hours to bring the fire under control. The fire which broke out around 2.30 am on 16th Sept, 2018 started on the ground floor and rapidly spread to the upper floors due to a huge stock of flammable items. Luckily no casualties were reported. On 18th Sept, 2018 after a tough operation, the fire at Bagree market was finally put out. Meanwhile, cases were lodged against two directors and the CEO of Bagree Estate Private Limited. All three accused absconded. Immense carelessness and violation of all sorts of fire and safety regulations, led to such an unanticipated incident. As a result, even upon immediate action by the firefighters and disaster management teams, the fire only came under control after a long fight. It is no surprise that such unfortunate news rocks the city. Although the shop owners had been charged large sums of money by the market management for the maintenance of the building, large portions of concrete were seen peeling off the walls and ceilings of the building. Some locals were also heard remarking that the building had developed deep cracks. The Kolkata Municipal Corporation teams were seen removing the charred remains of goods and plastic materials. While this happened, several traders were seen salvaging whatever they could from the blackened leftovers.Despite, the dilapidated condition of the building, none were in favor of tearing down the market, especially businessmen and traders. They believed that the market was strong enough to endure such fires, but they did conceed that it will need major repair work. But the million dollar question remains; where will the money come from for all the repairs? Traders, businessmen and people in general have lost everything. They can only hope and pray that the market and the businesses recover soon enough, before the fire safety regulations of another building are found to be flouted.