THE DELHI FIRE PREVENTION AND FIRE SAFETY ACT, 1986

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The Delhi Fire Prevention and Fire Safety Act, 1986 was enacted on December 12, 1986 and came into effect on March 2, 1987 with its application extending to the entire Delhi Union Territory. The primary goal behind the enactment was to make an effectual condition to secure against fire and to take preventive measures against fire in some erections as well as the surroundings in the Delhi Union Territory. The Administrator under the Act is the person who has been entrusted the responsibility under Article 239 of the Indian Constitution by the President. The Appellate Tribunal was established according to Section 347 A as provided under the Delhi Municipal Corporation Act of 1957. ‘Building’ includes latrine, house, walls excluding boundary wall, erections made up of wood, metal, bricks etc. The fire prevention and safety measures include the assessment that is essential as per the building bye-laws for avoidance and regulation of fire and also to guarantee the protection of life and property when fire occurs. ‘Local Authority’ consists of Delhi Development Authority, New Delhi Municipal Committee, Delhi Cantonment Board and Delhi Municipal Corporation.

As provided under the Act nominated authority is the Station Officer or an officer above such rank who is chosen by the Chief Fire Officer. It also contains an officer who is proposed by railway administration or any local authority as provided under the Act. An occupier is a person who is paying or is under the responsibility to pay rent to the real owner or part of rent. Such rent shall be towards land or structure with regard to the rent is being given. It shall also embrace of rent free tenant, licensee who possesses the land and person who is accountable to pay compensation to the owner for employing the land or erection. Owner is the person to whom the rent is being paid or who has the right to receive rent. An agent, guardian or authorized person is also the owner for the purposes of the enactment.

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The proposed authority is entrusted to enter and inspect the structure or the surroundings within the duration specified under the Act subsequent to providing notice of three hours to the person occupying the building or land. Where the occupier is absent, notice shall be served to the owner and the building should have the prescribed height provided under the rules. Inspection shall be done only if it is essential to determine the adequacy or breach of securing from fire and preventive measures from fire. The owner shall give suitable help to the proposed authority when the assessment is carried out. When the inspection is completed,, the nominated authority shall record the findings with regard to the changes or the breach of the bye laws on avoidance of fire and also the lack of measures adopted when considering the height of such structure and in addition, give notice to the owner issuing direction to assume essential measures that are prescribed in the notice.

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The Chief Fire Officer shall conduct inspection in the structure and surroundings that are erected prior to June 6, 1983 and such inspection shall be carried out as provided in the provisions of the Act. Where the notice is not complied with, the Chief Fire Officer shall take necessary measures to abide by the notice. When such measures are taken, the expenses on such steps shall be reimbursed to the Officer by the owner when the amount is demanded. An appeal shall lie to the Appellate Tribunal by the aggrieved person within 30 days. From the order of the Appellate Authority, appeal shall be filed to the Administrator. The Administrator is given the authority to frame rules for the proper enforcement of the enactment. The rules so formulated shall be laid before the House of People and the Council of States and the rules shall be implemented according to the decision of the two houses.