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Updated: September 20, 2013 00:31 IST

Three workers buried alive in Tiruchi as hotel shed caves in

S. Ganesan
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A woman being rescued from debris at a construction site on Old Madurai Road in Tiruchi on Thursday. Photo: M. Moorthy
The Hindu A woman being rescued from debris at a construction site on Old Madurai Road in Tiruchi on Thursday. Photo: M. Moorthy

They were engaged in removing earth from a trench

Three construction workers were buried alive and three others injured when a portion of kitchen and generator shed of a hotel collapsed on the Old Madurai Road in the heart of the city on Thursday. A trench was being dug up for raising pile foundation for a commercial complex coming up in an adjacent plot.

The workers were engaged in removing earth from the trench when the structure in the backside of Hotel Sri Krishna’s collapsed.

K. Umarani (37) and Kanmani alias Tamilselvi (33), both of Maruthur village near Samayapuram, and S. Poongothai (50) of Manpidimangalam died on the spot, while Vasuki (50) and Ramesh (35) of Maruthur and Sarala (30) of Manpidimangalam were injured and admitted to the Mahatma Gandhi Memorial Government Hospital. Six construction workers were at the site just a few feet away from the hotel when the accident took place around 2.30 p. m. Some others, including a few masons, were away for lunch. “I had gone to a neighbouring Amma canteen for lunch when the accident took place. Although 11 of us were working at the site, only five or six were engaged in clearing the earth from the pits. The women had just returned for work after lunch,” said Ganesan, a mason.

Some of the employees in adjacent shops along the roadsaid they heard a thud and rushed there to find the workers caught beneath the debris. Work was on for relocating an electric pole along the road.

Locals, Fire and Rescue Service personnel, police, members of the State Disaster Response Team and Corporation workers launched a rescue operation that lasted over three hours. A crane and an earth mover were deployed to remove the boulders and generators to rescue the workers. Traffic on the busy Old Madurai Road was blocked as police struggled to keep away curious onlookers.

Corporation officials suspect the kitchen shed to be an unauthorised structure built as an extension of the hotel.

The adjacent site, where a saw mill had been functioning till recently, was being re-developed as a commercial building by the owner.

Corporation officials said the building was being constructed with plan approval.

However, no safety measures were apparently in place at the building site except for a few poles to support the roof of the adjacent structure.

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It has become, order of the day, that in India there is no value for human lives and there is no dearth for the same either, to undergo and embrace such tragedies on day-to-day basis wherever they are within the precints of India. This happens so, due to the sickly-callousness of those in charge of various official positions, when they are least expected and supposed to conduct things in orderly fashion as well as to discharge their duties accordingly but in great vain. Corrupt practices in nexus with negligence have eaten into their decent lives, where only the money counts not the lives any more, which in fact are more precious in terms of moral and ethical values. We do not know as to how long they can proceed this course. GOD Forbid. Better sense should better prevail to make things better. Let's wait and watch.

from:  Haja Abu Bucker
Posted on: Sep 20, 2013 at 01:52 IST
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