The owner of a fire-hit city takeaway claims he could potentially lose out on £8,000 after the damage forced him to close his doors.
The blaze was started while staff at Azaad Takeaway, in Whitfield, were making food last Monday night.
Despite frantically trying to stop the fire from spreading, owner Mohammad Yasin and others were forced to flee the restaurant and watch helplessly as flames and smoke billowed through the building.
Mohammad said: “We were in the kitchen doing some prep for our homemade spicy chicken.
“There was some oil in a pan next to the fryer, because our cooker is close to the fryer.
“We were waiting for the oils to heat up so we could add the spices, when something happened with the fryer and flames were coming out.
“It went up and up so we put a fire blanket over it, but there was too much oil and we couldn’t control it. There was smoke all over the place.”
The kitchen has been left smoke-damaged, with much of the walls and equipment blackened or in some cases completely destroyed.
Now Mohammad and other staff have been working hard to get the restaurant back to a condition where it can be re-opened.
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He said: “I’m feeling really upset. It’s not easy to run a business, and I wasn’t expecting this to happen.
“I’ve got four children and I really rely on this business.
“We work hard day and night, it’s really our bread and butter. In sales we’re looking at losing about £8,000.”
The distraught owner claims that the UK’s current state of lockdown, it has been much harder for him to get his hands on the supplies and people needed to repair the damage, meaning that the Indian takeaway may be closed for up to a month.
He said: “We had people from the insurance company come up and they’ve said that it could take weeks.
“There’s no suppliers that can come up to fix it. We’re still getting there, getting things a bit organised.
“The staff have been up to help give it a deep clean. We’re going to reopen as we can. I’m putting in the hours, bit by bit.”
The businessman also said he became even more distressed after people claimed he deliberately caused the fire in a ploy to cash in on insurance money.
He said: “As soon as it happened I read on Facebook that people were saying that it’s an insurance job.
“It really hurt me. I would never do that, I’ve always worked for my money. It was a bit upsetting.”