April 7, 2003, Chandigarh, India
6 die in wall collapse
Rama Mandi (Bathinda), April 6
A case under Section 304-A of the IPC was registered against Mr Gobind Ram, the owner of the marriage palace, and one of the surviving partners of the building contractor, Bhola, at the local police station for alleged involvement in using sub-standard construction material and not following the specifications laid down for buildings.
Those dead were Chinda, Bhagwan Singh, Angrej Singh (contractor), Gauri and Soni. Three were brought dead at the local Civil Hospital, while one succumbed to his injuries in the hospital.
Mr Surinder Singla, Chairman, High-Powered Finance Committee, Punjab, who, along with Deputy Commissioner Anurag Verma and SSP Ishwar Singh, visited the Civil Hospital here to enquire about the injured, said the Punjab Government would provide free treatment to them.
He said he would take up the matter with the Chief Minister for suitable compensation to the families who had lost bread-winners and those injured in the mishap.
Eyewitnesses told TNS that the mishap took place when the construction workers were plastering the newly erected wall of the marriage palace. It collapsed when water was sprinkled on it. The wall, which was without any support and was cemented with substandard material, could not tolerate the water pressure and came down.
Eight of the 11 workers plastering the wall were buried under heaps of bricks. The people, who were working in nearby shops, rushed to the site and managed to extricate the workers.
Gobind Ram, owner of the marriage palace, was constructing the same without getting the site plan sanction from the local Municipal Council authorities. The wall was 40 feet high and without support. Residents alleged that medical specialists could not be called to attend to the emergency situation as the telephone of the Civil Hospital was out of order.
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