Mumbai fast bowler Aquib Shaikh may have not got many opportunities to rescue the various teams he played for, with his bat. But on Wednesday, he put to use another object made of wood to help rescue 40 residents from a fire at the eight-storey Charm Stars building in Kalyan (West).
The wooden object we are talking about is an old, unused staircase which Aquib, 29, Adnan Khan Pathan, 34 and neighbour Danish Khan, 33 used to transport residents from the sixth floor of Charm Stars to a terrace of the nearby Sundra Plaza building.
"There was no electricity for the entire day and when the lights came on at around 6.15 pm, I put my mobile phone for charging and the power went off again. Suddenly, my mother came out shouting that there is a fire. When I opened the main door there was smoke all around and I couldn't see anyone," said Aquib, who stays on the sixth floor of Charm Stars. Aquib played one Ranji Trophy game for Mumbai—against Rajasthan in 2010-11.
Smoke emanates from the Charm Stars building on Wednesday
Fourth floor resident Danish, who was on the ground floor of the building when he discovered the fire, said: "I called Aquib and few other friends in the building. Aquib, my brother in law Adnan and a few others went to the sixth floor gallery of Charm Stars to help people land easily at Sundra Plaza. Quite naturally, the residents were in a state of panic. It could well have been a massive tragedy, but timely help from all our friends made the difference."
Aquib Shaikh tries to rescue fire victims
The trio came to the rescue of residents which included several women. "We were all scared because of the suffocation and dark smoke. My grandmother, 80, mother and wife were in our house but luckily they and others could be safe because Sundra Plaza is smaller in height and only around eight feet away from our gallery. Thankfully, there were no casualties and major injuries to anyone," Aquib remarked. It is learnt that a short circuit may have caused the fire, which was put off by the fire brigade.
Danish Khan and Adnan Khan
Aquib's father, Mobin, a cricket coach and a former 'A' division cricketer noticed the fire as he returned from the market. "Despite the ongoing lockdown crisis, the fire brigade and police personnel handled the situation very well," said Mobin.
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