Four people were killed and at least others 12 feared trapped under rubble after a building collapsed as heavy monsoon rains lashed India's financial capital Mumbai on Tuesday, officials said, the second such tragedy in two weeks.
Speaking to ANI, BMC Disaster Management Cell said that the Kesarbai building has collapsed at Tandel street, in Dongri, Mumbai.
Fire brigade, Mumbai Police and civic officials rushed to the site but the constricted lanes made it hard to access the area, which was reduced to a mass of rubble, twisted concrete and broken wires.
The building was located in a narrow lane in a congested area, making it hard to send in earth-moving machines, Talpade said, adding that police were using sniffer dogs in their rescue operation.
On Sunday, a three-storey building collapsed in a hilly area in the northern Indian town of Solan following heavy rains, killing 14 people. Many families are still feared trapped inside the building, which had been declared unfit for human habitation previously.
It's estimated disasters such as this kill about 2,000 people a year in India. It is now learnt to the office that the said Kesarbai Building is a MHADA Cess building. Authorities have said there is no money to rebuild the structure.
Collapse of a building in Mumbai's Dongri is anguishing.
"Right now, the focus is on rescuing those trapped in the debris". Resident of an adjoining building, Mustafa Patel, rushed to help along with his brother.
However, MHADA claimed in a statement that the building which collapsed was unauthorised.
"As per the initial information I have received, around 15 families are feared trapped in the collapse".
An eyewitness said the building collapse felt like a quake.
Fire crews and the National Disaster Response Force (NDRF) have scrambled to the building collapse site. "Here we have one of Mumbai's oldest neighborhoods crumbling, people being forced to live precariously in dilapidated structures and the civic administration turns a blind eye", said Preeti Sharma Menon, Nation Executive member of AAP.
Cramped and crowded lanes leading up to the site made it challenging for rescue equipment to reach the building, added Rahangdale.