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Sep 29, 2013 at 10:37am IST

Mumbai: Death toll in building collapse rises to 61

Mumbai: The death toll in the residential building collapse on Dockyard road in Mumbai has risen to 61. The four-storey building, owned by the Brihanmumbai Municipal Corporation, collapsed on Friday morning. Around 32 people were injured in the incident.

NDRF Deputy Commandment Sachidanand Gawde said, "In total we have extracted 93 people, 33 alive and 60 dead. Right now after checking the site we are satisfied that there are no more bodies left in debris."

The police had arrested the owner of the godown, who had rented the ground floor of the building, on charges of culpable homicide not amounting to murder. He has been remanded to police custody till October 1. The BMC had alleged that he had made illegal alterations to the building that led to damaging its structure. The BMC has also ordered an audit of all similar buildings in the city.

About 21 families, who were BMC's tenants, lived in the 30-year-old structure. Though there are no proper records of how many people were on the ground floor godown of the BMC building.

The building was categorised as a C-2 building, which meant that it was in need of urgent repairs. The building is located on Brahmadev Khot Marg near Babu Genu market in the Mazgaon area, which is close to the Dockyard Road railway station on the harbour railway line.

Maharashtra Chief Minister Prithviraj Chavan held a meeting with senior officials and asked them to ensure effective relief and rescue operation. He also visited the site of the collapse to review rescue operations.

"The rescue operation is a slow and painful process because people are stuck inside. Due to RCC slabs there are many air pockets and cavities where people are stuck and are alive. After 15-16 hours there are still people who are brought out alive," he said.

The affected families would be given alternative accommodation in the vicinity. It has also announced a compensation of Rs 2 lakh each to the family of the deceased.

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