Instead of extending help, landlord fled from the spot, alleges a resident

Five children of daily wage workers playing outside their homes were crushed to death when a poorly constructed 20-foot-high wall collapsed on them in Dallupura village on the outskirts of the Capital on Wednesday. Bereaved families alleged that the landlord had erected the wall a fortnight ago to segregate the plot from the portion that he intended to rent out for use as a warehouse by a reputed beverages company.

Tragedy struck around 9-30 a.m. when the children were busy playing outside their one-room accommodations inside the 1,000-square-yard premises that houses 28 such small units. A huge portion of the brick-wall came crumbling down on them like a pack of cards.

“I was outside my room attending to my child when it all happened. I along with the other residents raised an alarm, seeking help to pull the children from under the rubble. Instead of extending help our landlord Vijender Gujjar, who was standing nearby overseeing the work on the other portion, fled from the spot. I saw him running away,” alleged Kusum, a resident.

The police rushed the children to Lal Bahadur Shastri Hospital where five of them were declared dead on arrival. They were identified as Kanchan (7), Amit (7), Ankit (6), his sister Baby (2) and Aditya (5). Aditya’s sister Saraswati (4) also sustained serious injuries and is presently under treatment at the same hospital.