Mumbai hoarding collapse: Bodies of retired GM of Mumbai Air Traffic Control, wife retrieved from car; toll reaches 16; rescue operation ends : The Tribune India

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Mumbai hoarding collapse: Bodies of retired GM of Mumbai Air Traffic Control, wife retrieved from car; toll reaches 16; rescue operation ends

Action being taken on 'war footing' to remove illegal hoardings in metropolis

Mumbai hoarding collapse: Bodies of retired GM of Mumbai Air Traffic Control, wife retrieved from car; toll reaches 16; rescue operation ends

Rescue work on at the site. PTI



PTI

Mumbai, May 16

Bodies of a retired GM of Mumbai airport ATC and his wife were retrieved from the wreckage at the crash site of a giant hoarding here, taking the toll to 16 as the rescue operation was called off on Thursday morning with no hopes of finding survivors three days after the tragedy, officials said.

Former general manager (GM) of Mumbai ATC Manoj Chansoria (60) and his wife Anita (59) were missing since Monday evening when they left for Jabalpur in Madhya Pradesh from the ATC guest house in western Mumbai in a car.

The bodies of a man and a woman were extricated from a car stuck underneath the collapsed hoarding shortly after midnight on Wednesday and the victims were later identified as Manoj Chansoria and his wife, they said.

A 120 feet x 120 feet billboard, which according to officials was illegally installed, collapsed on a petrol pump in the Chheda Nagar area of suburban Ghatkopar during a dust storm on Monday evening, killing 14 people and injuring 75 others.

A Brihanmumbai Municipal Corporation (BMC) official said the bodies of Chansoria and his wife were in a “decomposed state” and taken to the nearby civic-run Rajawadi Hospital around 1 am.

On Tuesday night, Chansoria’s mobile phone location was tracked to the petrol pump on which the hoarding had collapsed a day earlier. It is believed Chansoria had stopped at the petrol pump for refuelling his car when the billboard crashed.

The search and rescue operation at the crash site, which went on for 66 hours, was called off at around 10.30 am on Thursday, an official of the National Disaster Response Force (NDRF) said.

BMC Commissioner Bhushan Gagrani made an announcement about it after inspecting the site.

Speaking to reporters, Gagrani said 16 people have died in the tragedy and the search and rescue operation was now complete at the site.

The civic chief said they have thoroughly checked the site to ensure no more person was trapped there.

Now, the work of clearing the debris will continue through the day, he said.

He said agencies like BMC, Mumbai police, BPCL, NDRF, Mumbai fire brigade, and Mahanagar Gas participated in the rescue operation and completed it “maintaining proper coordination”.

Action is being taken on a “war footing” to remove illegal hoardings in the metropolis, the IAS officer said.

“There should be no hoardings (in the city) other than those meeting the specifications laid down for them. So it is not a question of who owns them or whose place they are in,” Gagrani said.

Gagrani said structural stability of hoardings is mandatory for the ones permitted by the BMC.

Similarly, the Railways has been directed to follow the specifications and remove those hoardings that do not conform to the parameters, he said.

The illegal giant hoarding that collapsed in Ghatkopar stood on a piece of land in possession of the Government Railway Police (GRP), officials had said.

#Mumbai


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