The collapse occurred in the Burrabazar area, full of shops, buildings and roads. The flyover was under construction since 2009. The construction company is suspected of having used cheap materials. A survivor worker reported seeing the bolts protruding from the metal beams.
Calcutta (AsiaNews / Agencies) – The death toll from the collapse of an overpass in one of the most crowded areas of Calcutta, West Bengal India has risen to 24 dead, 90 seriously injured and dozens of people still trapped under the rubble.
The incident occurred yesterday in the late afternoon, when a long portion of about 100 meters of a viaduct under construction since 2009 collapsed, burying cars, rickshaws and pedestrians. According to witnesses, at the edge of the construction yard makeshift huts had been built where several destitute families lived. The responsibilities are yet to be ascertained, but there are suspicions about the quality of the material used for the construction and the lack of adequate security certificates.
The collapse occurred in the Burrabazar in the Girish Park area, north of the city. The area is known as one of the most congested parts of Calcutta, crammed with shops, roads and houses.
Rescue teams, including 300 soldiers, firefighters and civil protection teams, have struggled to deliver cranes and rescue equipment and the operations continued throughout the night. The total number of people involved is still uncertain, given the difficulty of reaching the wounded still trapped under heavy concrete pillars and steel.
A worker pulled alive from the rubble said that he was working in the yard and before the collapse saw bolts protruding from the metal beams. "We were bracing two supporting beams - he said - but we could not control the weight of the cement".
Police in Calcutta has registered the case against the manufacturer, the IVRCL of Hyderabad, which has expressed its willingness to cooperate with investigators. Mamata Banerjee, chief minister of the state, said that the authorities will take "severe action" against those responsible for the disaster.
In recent years there have been many similar incidents in India, due to inadequacy of the materials used. In November 2010, 69 people were buried in Delhi in a building collapse; in June 2014, the collapse of a building on the outskirts of Chennai claimed more than 60 victims; in April 2013 74 people were victims of another collapse in Mumbai; in July 2015 five people in Delhi were buried by the implosion of a four-storey building; a month later 11 other people died in Mumbai. Shared from AsiaNews