A massive rescue operation is underway in Mumbai’s Dongri, where a 100-year-old building crumbled after incessant monsoon rains. Early reports suggest that more than 50 people were trapped under the rubble. Locals were seen removing debris with bare hands in frantic search for the survivors. According to BMC officials, two people have died and five have been successfully rescued from the concrete remains. One of the victims has been identified as 45-year-old Abdul Sattar Kalu and the other one is a woman who is yet to be identified. Mumbai Police commissioner Sanjay Barve has reached the spot.
“As per the initial information I have received, around 15 families are feared trapped in the collapse. The building is around 100 yrs old. The entire focus is on rescuing the people trapped. Investigation will be done,” Maharashtra Chief Minister Devendra Fadnavis was quoted as saying by news agency ANI.
The Brihanmumbai Municipal Corporation took to Twitter and gave information about the recue work. “In an extremely unfortunate incident, the Kesarbai bldng in Dongri collapsed at 11.40 am. According to preliminary information, 40 to 50 people are most likely trapped in the debris. Teams of NDRF, fire brigade, our disaster management team as well as all senior officials of MCGM are on the site. Rescue work is in progress & we request citizens to cooperate with the authorities,” BMC said on Twitter.
A report by ‘Zee 24 Taas’ gave grim details of hapless residents of the building. Some said that it was like an earthquake when the building collapsed. With loud screams and agonising wails filling the air, there are many who are looking for their loved ones trapped under the debris. A mother kept on asking the rescuers to look for her newly-wed daughter who was stuck under the rubble.