MUMBAI: Mumbai Mayor Vishwanath Mahadeshwar said he had asked the municipal commissioner to launch a probe. The BMC has opened a shelter at Imamwada Municipal Secondary Girls School after the building collapse, a civic official said.
"We are assuming that 10 to 12 families are still under the debris," Mumbadevi MLA Amin Patel told reporters at the spot. As rescue efforts went on, there was confusion about which body owned the building. Locals said the building belonged to the Maharashtra Housing and Area Development Authority (MHADA).
However, Vinod Ghosalkar, chief of MHADA repair board, denied that was the case. Legislator Bhai Jagtap said residents had complained to housing authorities to take prompt measures as the building was very old and had long been in a dilapidated state.
Some part of the building was left standing after the collapse. A civic official said around 500 buildings were declared as dilapidated this year but of them, only 68 have been evacuated.
According to Congress leader and long time Mumbaikar Milind Deora, the story was the same each monsoon. "This is unfortunately something that happens in Mumbai every year during monsoon.
Walls collapse, there are pot holes on roads where people die and young boys fall into manholes," he said. The former Union minister said it was time for Mumbaikars to seek an explanation from the government for this recurring problem.
There was heavy deployment of police personnel who had barricaded the affected areas.Mumbai Municipal Commissioner Praveen Pardeshi and Police Commissioner Sanjay Barve were among those who visited the site of the building collapse.