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Who allowed Harbin hotel to violate the law?

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The blaze at the four-story Beilong Hot Spring Hotel in Harbin, Heilongjiang province, started at 4:36 am on Saturday. [Photo/Chinanews.com]

TWENTY PEOPLE are confirmed to have died in a fire at a hotel in Harbin, Northeast China's Heilongjiang province, on Saturday. Legal Daily comments:

Although an investigation into the cause of the fire is still going on, it is evident that the fire prevention and control supervision failed, as the hotel had been inspected four times and each time it failed to meet the requirements for fire prevention and control.

The hotel should not even exist as it is located on Taiyang Island in the Songhua River, a tourist scenic zone, where, according to relevant laws, there should be no hotels or restaurants.

Yet the hotel, which covers an area of more than 10,000 square meters, is in the core zone of the island, and it has been in business for years. That means the tourism and commerce departments both failed to enforce the law.

Deadly accidents are often partially attributable to the supervisory departments' dereliction of duties, which may harbor clues to corruption.

According to the fire prevention and control safety responsibility system rules, the civil servants responsible for safety should be held accountable and dealt with by the judicial authorities.

Apart from looking for the cause of the fire, the investigators must not ignore the responsibilities of the fire prevention and control, tourism, commerce, construction, and land departments, and they should be held accountable for any criminal liabilities.

Influenced by the traditional "power-based" thinking, some officials ignore the law. The fire in Harbin should raise the awareness of all departments and officials that they must fulfill their supervisory roles as stipulated by the law.

Source:chinadaily.com.cn  Editor:Lucky

(Source_title:Who allowed Harbin hotel to violate the law?)

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