Mumbai: The fire at the Make in India event in Mumbai spread at an alarming speed, engulfing the whole stage in a matter of minutes, said actor Aamir Khan who was set to perform at the venue on Sunday night.
"I was waiting in my make-up van. My performance was in an hour. Then my staff told me that there is a fire. So, I stepped out to see. And sure enough the stage was on fire. And it's so windy the fire spread at an alarming speed!" he said.
"I'm okay, but it's very unfortunate," he said. He stressed that the authorities had handled the situation well. "Even during evacuation injuries can happen, but evacuation was done smoothly. The police and fire department did a wonderful job. Also, I have to congratulate the Chief Minister for leading from the front," he told NDTV.
Aamir Khan was set to perform at the event being attended by around 8,000 members of the audience and 4,000 crew members. A tragedy was averted as the programme was being held at an open area. The people could rush to the beach and the Marine Drive.
The 'Maharashtra Night' was the flagship event of the Maharashtra government and a number of politicians - including the Chief Minister and the Governor -- and Bollywood actors were attending it.
Nearly 30 minutes after it broke out, the fire was brought under control. There was no report of any casualty.
Besides Aamir, Chief Minister Devendra Fadnavis, Governor C Vidyasagar Rao, Shiv Sena chief Uddhav Thackeray, and actor politician Hema Malini, were also safely evacuated.
The fire started just after the performance of actor Amitabh Bachchan who left before the fire started. It spread rapidly, spread by a strong wind till the whole stage - a creation of Bollywood set designer Nitin Desai - was gutted.
Prime Minister Narendra Modi had inaugurated the Make in India Week yesterday as a showcase event for the government's flagship manufacturing scheme.