A forensic report by Central Forensic Science Laboratory (CFSL) on the recent fire accident at the Maharashtra Mantralaya dismissed sabotage as the cause of fire.
According to the CFSL report, there was no extraneous incendiary material found inside the ill-fated state secretariat building during their investigation. "Thereby prima facie we rule out sabotage as the cause of the fire," the report said.
According to the reports on fire accident, the fire was first spotted on the fourth floor of the building and in no time the fire devoured the fifth and sixth floor, which gutted several ministers' offices in the building and incinerated several computers, including thousands of files.
It's feared that important documents related to Adarsh housing scam and developmental projects might have been destroyed in the fire. However, the officials emphasising on the files said that the data related to the scam can be retrieved from the CBI officials or from the two-member judicial panel.
In several cases, fire accidents are used as a powerful weapon to destroy the crucial records or evidence to escape from cases. Several government offices in India have suffered fire mishaps in the past, which were alleged to have been done deliberately to destroy files and papers that were likely to spell trouble for the accused.
Fire at the Maharashtra state secretariat is being speculated as one such conspiracy. At least five people were charred to death in the fire accident.
The Mumbai police have registered an accidental death case and are investigating.
Rs 1 billion to repair Mantralaya building
A latest media report claims that the Maharashtra government is mulling to claim whopping Rs 1 billion (Rs 100 crore) to rebuild the gutted official building.
A report on Mid-Day.com said, "According to a restoration plan drawn up by renowned architect Raja Aederi and submitted by the Public Works Department (PWD) the extensive damage control work will cost over Rs 100 crore (Rs 1 billion) to restore the building it pristine condition. Even a few years ago, Aederi had submitted his Mantralaya makeover plan, which was vehemently backed by PWD Minister Chhagan Bhujbal. But it fell through owing to political differences between the NCP and the Congress."