Three killed as slab of under-construction building collapses in Pune

The incident has brought into sharp relief yet again the pressing issue of labourers’ safety measures on construction sites.

October 17, 2017 12:46 pm | Updated 05:48 pm IST - Pune

Three labourers were killed and one more seriously injured after the slab of an under-construction building collapsed in Pune’s Dattawadi area on Tuesday morning.

Three labourers were killed and one more seriously injured after the slab of an under-construction building collapsed in Pune’s Dattawadi area on Tuesday morning.

Three labourers were killed and one more seriously injured after the slab of an under-construction building collapsed in Pune’s Dattawadi area on Tuesday morning.

The tragedy occurred between 10 a.m. and 10:30 a.m., when a group of four labourers were working on the 7th floor of an under-construction building which was a project by Pate Developers, a city-based construction group. The labourers in question hailed from Jharkhand and were in their 20s.

The incident has brought into sharp relief yet again the pressing issue of labourers’ safety measures on construction sites.

The deceased have been identified as Prakash Saav (26), Dulari Paswan (28) and Midhun Singh (22). The fourth labourer, Ramu Pawan (24), suffered serious injuries and is undergoing treatment at a local hospital, said Dattawadi police.

“The labourers were about their usual tasks when the cement slab of the seventh floor caved in. All three were killed on the spot,” informed Anil Patil, senior police inspector, Dattawadi police station.

Mr. Patil further informed that the police were investigating the matter and were in the process of lodging an FIR against the developers under section 304 (culpable homicide not amounting to murder) of the Indian Penal Code (IPC).

He said the contractors and the project owners were being investigated to ascertain who was responsible for the tragedy and questions like whether or not the labourers were wearing safety harnesses while working at that height.

The incident is a veritable replay of the Balewadi slab collapse tragedy in July last year in which nine labourers were killed on the spot.

In that case, the authorities had stated that the accident was clearly a case of “illicit construction” as the builders (Pride Purple) had violated norms by constructing an additional storey (the 13th floor). Permission to build only 12 floors, plus the basement, was granted.

The Dattawadi incident adds to a string of accidents that have occurred in Pune in recent years. On December 2012, 13 labourers were killed when a slab of an under-construction building caved in at Wagholi, 20 km from the city.

Prior to that, in September that same year, six persons were killed on the spot and several more injured after a four-storey residential building caved in at Sahakar Nagar.

Safety norms and illicit constructions came into question yet again in January 2014, when a newly constructed six-storey building collapsed in the city’s suburban region of Narhe-Ambegaon, tragically killing a 28-year-old youth who was trapped under the debris.

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