Mumbai News

Mumbai mall fire: Traders suffer festive season loss of Rs 100 crore – Times of India

MUMBAI: Orchid City Centre began as a mall, but is now largely converted into a retail and wholesale market for mobile phones and accessories. The raging fire, which began on Thursday night, is believed to have damaged goods worth at least Rs 100 crore, claimed shopkeepers. Because of the festive season, more goods than usual were stored, they said.
Around 1,000 shops at the mall supply mobile phone accessories across the country, though as per BMC records, there are 776 shops there. These shopkeepers earlier were at the controversial Sara Sahara centre at Crawford Market. Their shops were destroyed in a 2011 fire , after which they shifted to City Centre, Mumbai Central.
There used to be a supermarket on two floors of the mall but shut some years ago. Although City Centre started as a fullfledged mall in 2005, the management later converted the premises into small 100-200 sqft galas to accommodate hundreds of shopkeepers on the second and third floors, both now completely burnt. The estimate of losses is based on that each shop had material worth at least Rs 10 lakh, said an employee of one of the galas.
Assistant municipal commissioner (D-Ward) Prashant Gaikwad said, “We are checking the mall’s original and amended plans. We are examining if illegal changes were made.”
Ashraf Asrafe, who has a garment shop on the ground floor, said firefighters were struggling to find another entrance to the mall and decided to break the glass wall of his shop: “I have Rs 10 lakh worth garments. There was less impact of the fire on the ground floor.”