A 26-year-old construction labourer was buried alive while another escaped with injuries when a heap of earth caved in on them at an under construction site in Kammanahalli in the City on Tuesday morning.
The body of the deceased Bharath, which was trapped in the debris of the collapsed earth and iron rods fixed for construction of a retaining wall, was retrieved after more than seven hours of rescue operation carried out by the personnel from Fire and Emergency Services.
Police said the incident took place around 9.30 am soon after Bharath, a native of West Bengal, and Birbal, a native of Jharkand, began digging the earth for construction of a retaining wall for the basement of an apartment spread across a site measuring about 4,400 square feet.
As soon as the earth fell on them from a height of around 12 feet, Anand, an employee in a welding shop nearby ran to their rescue with implements from the shop. He managed to pull out Birbal from underneath the heap of earth. While Birbal was taken away to a hospital in Indiranagar, Anand tried in vain to rescue Bharath, whose hand was visible amid the rubble.
Soon, personnel from the Fire and Emergency Services reached the spot and started the operation to rescue Bharat. “Retrieving the body was a complex operation as the earth had collapsed on the iron rods that had been fixed for building the retention wall”, a Fire Force personnel said.
BBMP officials said the land was jointly owned by three persons, who were building an apartment complex comprising basement plus three floors. The owners had obtained all the necessary permission and soil-testing too had been carried out, the officials said. However, the mishap had taken place due to the negligence of the owner and the builders, a BBMP official said.
Meanwhile, Deputy Commissioner of Police (East) Harsha, who also visited the spot, said a case of negligence has been booked against the owner and the contractors.