MOSCOW, December 11 (RIA Novosti) -Russia's Emergencies Minister Sergei Shoigu said inspectors had for years turned a blind eye to breaches of fire safety in a Perm nightclub, where a fire claimed 139 lives last week, a Russian daily said on Friday.
The fire engulfed the Lame Horse nightclub in the west Urals city in the early hours of Saturday after an indoor fireworks display went awry.
Shoigu was quoted by Rossiyskaya Gazeta as saying extensive building work had been carried out in the club some years before the December 5 tragedy, and dozens of fire safety breaches had been revealed since then.
However, the inspectors whose jov it was to supervise the implementation of fire safety rules in the club, showed negligence, the minister said. He said many discrepancies were discovered in documents provided by club's owners during the checks.
Shoigu said inspectors "had turned a blind eye to the discrepancies for many years", adding measures taken by the them could not assure fire safety inside the building.
"An inspector just came, watched, turned round and left. Everything is clear," the minister said, adding "this was the main reason why the people were sacked."
Sergei Shoigu sacked on Tuesday a chief fire inspector and six other officials in the Perm Territory over the accident.
Shoigu said Lame Horse his estimates showed the club's owners had a high income from their business and could have assured fire safety in the club.
On Monday, charges were brought against Lame Horse executive director Svetlana Yefremova, acting art director Oleg Fetkulov and co-owner of the club Anatoly Zak, as well as director of the Pirotsvet fireworks supplier Sergei Derbenev
More than 90 people still remain in hospital following the fire, with over 30 in a critical condition.