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11 die in Vadodara buildings collapse

At least eleven persons were killed, several injured and forty feared to be trapped in the debris of two buildings collapsed in Madhavnagar area of Vadodara on Wednesday.

Two multi-storey buildings, constructed under a housing scheme for economically weaker sections, collapsed in the early hours in Atladara on Wednesday. The housing was planned by the Vadodara Urban Development Authority (VUDA).

‘Eleven persons died and three sustained injuries in the incident. We are focusing on rescue operations as the priority is to save as many lives as possible,’ said Vadodara BJP MP, Balkrishna Shukla.

The residents blamed inferior quality of the construction for the incident and said that the other buildings in the colony, constructed in 2001, were also in a bad condition. ‘We have been making representations to the VUDA for quite some time now, but to no avail,’ said Suresh Valand, a resident. Most of the residents are either engaged in labour work or middle-level jobs.

 ‘We had approached VUDA and informed them about cracks in the building walls and ceilings. But, no one responded and instead we were driven out of VUDA office,’ said Manish Jadhav, resident of block 15.

The incident took place at around 4:30 am in Madhavnagar. The settlement has around 450 houses in 33 blocks.

According to the residents of the colony, one of the two collapsed buildings had 14 apartments of which 11 were occupied. The residents of the adjacent block vacated it as it was in a precarious condition after the collapse of the first one. The second block collapsed subsequently.

The rescue operations were conducted by the Vadodara Municipal Corporation (VMC) fire and emergency services, National Disaster and Rescue Force (NDRF) as well as Army personnel. The rescue action has been mounted to locate around 40 other victims who are feared to be buried under the debris.

Senior officers of the district administration, VMC and the city police rushed to the spot. Vadodara district collector Vinod Rao said that the priority was to rescue those trapped in the debris. ‘The incident has been taken very seriously and investigations will be conducted,’ Rao said. Victims were rushed to the BAPS Shastriji Maharaj Hospital.

Chief minister Narendra Modi announced a relief of Rs two lakh for the kin of the deceased and asked the state minister in charge of Vadodara district to rush to Vadodara. An inquiry commission will probe the incident.
Agencies

Agencies

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