Contrary to reports that the building in Mumbai’s Dongri that collapsed on Tuesday had not been categorised in the dangerous category, it has emerged that the Brihanmumbai Municipal Corporation had classified the century-old building as ‘extremely dangerous’ way back in 2017 and also asked for immediate evacuation to carry on the demolition work.
In a letter dated July 31, 2017, BMC said, “This office has then received the audit report from the said trust dtd. 31.07.2017 wherein the said Building is classified as ‘C1’ i.e. to be evacuated for demolition at the earliest.” The letter further stated, “This office staff had also confirmed with Executive Engineer Shri. Deokar……that the said Kesarbai Building is a cessed property. As such you are requested to follow age guidelines as mentioned by the Hon’ble High Court……..and do the needful in the said case to prevent the life of tenant and passerby’s.”
Brihanmumbai Municipal Corporation (BMC) in a letter dated 7 August 2017 on Kesarbhai building that collapsed in Dongri, today: Building is classified as ‘C1’, to be evacuated for demolition at the earliest…In event of any mishap this office won’t be responsible. #Maharashtra pic.twitter.com/h2XEaV4LxF
— ANI (@ANI) July 16, 2019
At around 11.30 am today, the building sank to the ground trapping around 50 people under the debris. Maharashtra Housing minister Radhakrishna Vikhe-Patil put the death toll at 12. A team of Mumbai police along with fire brigade, civic officials rushed to the site to carry on the rescue and relief operations. The road to the site is so much narrow that the rescue team are facing difficulty to access the area. According to reports, 15 families were living inside the building.
Chief Minister Devendra Fadnavis said that a probe will be initiated to determine the lapse on part of the developer who had been assigned the redevelopment project by residents.
Around 15 families were residing there.
As per the preliminary information, it is a 100 year old building and a developer was appointed by the residents.
We are further looking into all the aspects. @NDRFHQ @mybmc @MumbaiPolice teams are on the spot: CM @Dev_Fadnavis #dongri pic.twitter.com/bMG3ahwfb9
— CMO Maharashtra (@CMOMaharashtra) July 16, 2019
Prime Minister Narendra Modi also expressed anguished over the death. In a tweet, PM Modi said, “Collapse of a building in Mumbai’s Dongri is anguishing. My condolences to the families of those who lost their lives. I hope the injured recover soon. Maharashtra government, NDRF and local authorities are working on rescue operations and assisting those in need.”
Collapse of a building in Mumbai’s Dongri is anguishing. My condolences to the families of those who lost their lives. I hope the injured recover soon. Maharashtra Government, NDRF and local authorities are working on rescue operations & assisting those in need: PM @narendramodi
— PMO India (@PMOIndia) July 16, 2019
Milind Deora, Congress on #MumbaiBuildingCollapse: This is unfortunately something that happens in Mumbai every year during monsoon. You’ll see walls collapse, there are pot holes on roads where people die, young boys fall into manholes. Mumbaikars must ask what the govt is doing pic.twitter.com/a8rYKVlyRD
— ANI (@ANI) July 16, 2019
Meanwhile, Congress party has slammed the state government over the incident. Speaking to ANI, Congress leader Milind Deora said, “This is, unfortunately, something that happens in Mumbai every year during monsoon. You’ll see walls collapse, there are potholes on roads where people die, young boys fall into manholes. Mumbaikars must ask what the govt is doing.”