The toll in the building collapse in Dongri area of Mumbai rose to 14 on Wednesday even as efforts to rescue people from under the debris were still on, PTI reported. At least 40 people were feared trapped under the four-storey building that collapsed around 11.40 am on Tuesday.
“So far, 14 people – seven men, four women and three children – have lost their lives,” National Disaster Response Force spokesperson Sachidanand Gawde was quoted as saying. “Nine others were injured, they are being provided medical treatment.”
Gawde said the search and rescue operations continued through the night. “It [search and rescue operations] will go on till the last piece of rubble is not removed from the spot.”
An unidentified official of the Brihanmumbai Municipal Corporation said three bodies were recovered on Wednesday morning. “The toll is likely to go up,” the official said.
Maharashtra Chief Minister Devendra Fadnavis announced a compensation of Rs 5 lakh for the relatives of the deceased and Rs 50,000 for those injured, ANI reported. He added that the state government will take care of all the medical expenses of those injured.
Mumbai fire brigade chief PS Rahangdale said two children aged between six and eight and another aged about four were rescued from the debris. “Both kids were sent to Sir JJ hospital in 108 Ambulance, but they were declared dead,” Rahangdale said, adding one fireman was also injured during rescue operations.
The Mumbai Police have registered an accidental death report in the incident and will launch an inquiry soon.
The Kesarbai building on Tandel street in Dongri was owned by the Maharashtra Housing and Area Development Authority. The authority, however, said the building was unauthorised and denied it was under its supervision. In a letter dated August 7, 2017, the Brihanmumbai Municipal Corporation had also said that the building was classified as ‘C1’, and should be evacuated for demolition at the earliest. It said in an event of any accidents, they will not be responsible.