Mumbai (The Hindu): Two-storey building was declared unfit for occupation; rain, narrow lane hamper rescue operation.
At least nine people were killed on Sunday as a two-storey building collapsed at Bhiwandi near Mumbai after incessant rains from Saturday night.
Among the deceased were a woman and her four sons.
Even after the municipal corporation had declared the building unfit for occupation, around 10 families were residing in it. Officials involved in the rescue operation fear the death toll may increase as more than 20 people are believed to be trapped under the debris.
Continuous showers are making it difficult to clear the rubble and rescue those who were trapped. The building was located in Bhiwandi’s densely-populated Gaibi Nagar. Three fire brigade vehicles have reached the spot to assist the rescue operations. However, the operations were hampered by the narrow lane leading to the building.
Meanwhile, incessant rains have affected road and rail traffic in Mumbai and surrounding areas. Local trains running towards Chhatrapati Shivaji Terminus (CST) on the fast lane have been diverted to the slow track after problems at Parsik Tunnel near Mumbra. Complaints of waterlogging were reported from several Mumbai suburbs.
An emergency meeting was convened by Thane Guardian Minister Eknath Shinde at Bhiwandi Nizampur Municipal Corporation office in view of the incident. District Collector Mahendra Kalyankar and Municipal Commissioner E Ravindran were present at the meeting.
The Collector had earlier rushed to the site to supervise the relief and rescue operation which was hampered by the heavy rains that lashed the district today.
Eight of the deceased were identified as — Shahjahan Khurshid Aalam Ansari (42), her four sons Muddashir Khurshid Aalam Ansari (20), Saif Khurshid Aalam Ansari (17), Khalid Khurshid Aalam Ansari (15) and Shakib Khurshid Aalam Ansari (11), and Aayesha Mobin Ansari (38), Suphiya Shahnavaz Shah (19) and Yehem Ejaz Shah (10).
One of the deceased is yet to be identified.
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