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Kamala Mills fire: Mojo’s Bistro pub owners booked for culpable homicide, one owner arrested

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(G.N.S) Dt. 06
Mumbai
A case has been filed against Mojo’s Bistro — the pub where the deadly fire in Mumbai’s Kamala Mills that killed 14 people last month started — and one of the pub owners has been arrested. Yug Pathak, the son of Pune’s former police chief KK Pathak, who was arrested today, is a partner in the business.
The Mumbai police filed the case of culpable homicide this morning after the fire department said flying embers from the charcoal used for hookahs touched the curtains at the upscale pub. The restaurant did not have clearance to serve sheesha.
The management of adjacent pub, 1Above, whom the police blamed for the fire, had claimed that Mojo’s Bistro was responsible for the fire and was managing to stay in the clear because of their political connections.
Police have booked the owners of Mojo’s Bistro for culpable homicide not amounting to murder in connection with the massive fire in Kamala Mills compound, a day after a probe revealed that the blaze started from the high-end pub.
They wrote to the President, Prime Minister, Chief Minister, Mumbai Police Commissioner and the chief of the city’s civic body, demanding that the matter be investigated by the Central Bureau of Investigation. Alleging there was a conspiracy against them, they accused the police of “destroying the evidence on site and making false reports”.
On January 5, a report by the Mumbai fire department stated that flying embers from illegal hookah being served at Mojo’s Bistro was the probable cause of the deadly blaze, which claimed 14 lives on December 29, 2017.
“On basis of the report by the fire bridge, we have booked owners of Mojo’s Bistro pub for culpable homicide,” Deputy Commissioner of Police and spokesperson of Mumbai Police Sachin Patil told PTI. A senior police official gave the names of Mojo’s Bistro pub owners as Yug K. Pathak and Nagpur-based businessman Yug Tulli. Mr. Yug Pathak’s statement was recorded last week, he said.
Additional Commissioner of Police (Central Region) S. Jaykumar said the owners were booked under IPC sections 304 (culpable homicide not amounting to murder), 337 (causing hurt by act endangering life or personal safety of others), 338 (causing grievous hurt by act endangering life or personal safety of others) and 34 (acts done by several persons in furtherance of common intention) in the same case registered on December 29.
Earlier, the police had booked owners of ‘1 Above’ pub Hitesh Sanghvi and Jigar Sanghvi, co-owner Abhijeet Manka and others on various charges, including culpable homicide not amounting to murder.
On January 5, police announced a reward of ₹1 lakh for providing information about Jignesh Sanghvi, Kripesh Sanghvi and Abhijeet Mankar, who are absconding.
The police have arrested two managers of the pub and three relatives of the absconding owners. On Friday, a reward of Rs. 1 lakh was also announced for their arrest.
Most of the people who died were patrons of 1Above. Their bodies were found piled up inside the toilet. They had gone there to escape the flames, but died of suffocation.
The fire department report said the pub’s bouncer should have guided the stranded people to the emergency escape route which could have saved the life of these people. “This seems that even the security personnel were not aware of the emergency escape as one of the victim is security personnel (Bouncer) died in the Toilet (sic),” the fire department’s preliminary probe report accessed by a TV channel said.
Mojo’s Bistro said not a single death took place on their premises because their staff had undergone training in first aid, CPR, and fire drills.

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