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1Above partners were planning three more outlets in Mumbai & Pune

Wednesday, January 3, 2018, 10:00 Hrs  [IST]
HBI Staff | Mumbai

According to a report in The Economic Times, Kripesh Hasmukh Sanghavi, Jigar Hasmukh Sanghavi, and Abhijit Ashok Mankar, owners and partners in Sigrid Ospitalita and Entertainment that ran 1Above pub in Kamala Mills, were first-time restaurateurs reportedly looking to open two outlets at Bandra-Kurla and another in Pune. 

The rooftop restaurant-pub in Kamala Mills compound was immensely popular with Gujarati and Marwari communities, being one of the rare restaurants in Mumbai to serve only vegetarian fare with alcohol. 

"Mumbai has very few rooftop restaurants of this kind. So, given their size, location and the services, they were doing fairly well. They were already serving on the terrace… The new law has just come in and we have all applied for it," said an industry executive. 

The fire early Friday that tore through a four-storey building in Kamala Mills led to a mega demolition drive by the Brihanmumbai Muncipal Corporation (BMC), which destroyed illegal structures in about 100 restaurants and pubs in many areas of Mumbai and cut-off power supplies to many outlets. 

"While what happened was unfortunate and we do sympathise with the families who lost their loved ones, prior action should have been taken against restaurants that have flouted rules for so long. As a result of the belated actions of BMC, others are being penalised and the lives of around 4,000 employees who work in these restaurants and in this area are at stake. All restaurants have been shut for four days as the power supply is cut," said a restaurateur whose restaurants also faced BMC action. A letter shows that BMC officials had given a clean chit to the Kamala Mills Compound mid-December, stating that there were no illegal constructions in the area. 

The owners are on the run after FIRs were registered against them. Through their attorneys, they issued a statement addressed to the prime minister and other high executive offices, alleging biased police investigation in favour of Mojo's Bistro in Kamala Mills. The absconding owners have maintained that the fire originated in Mojo's Bistro, which was adjacent to 1Above. 

"The police have erroneously… concluded for the reasons best known to them that the fire has erupted from the premises of '1 Above', though the fire brigade has not given any report, forensic lab has not given any report and there is no conclusive report from any government body or competent authorities to come to the conclusion and reason to believe that fire has erupted from '1 Above' premises and not from the 'Mojo's Bistro' premises," the letter said. 

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