Building collapse in Bengaluru: 2 killed 8 injured 

Two labourers were killed and eight of them suffered injuries after the third floor of an under-construction multi-level car parking building in APMC premise in RMC Yard in North Bengaluru, collapsed in the wee hours on Friday. DH photo

Two labourers were killed and 12 injured when the third-floor portion of an under-construction multi-level car parking building on APMC Yard premises in North Bengaluru collapsed on Friday.

Police said the deceased Rahul and Rakesh, in their early twenties, were from West Bengal and Bihar. The injured labourers were shifted to KC General and Kanva Hospitals nearby.

Doctors said Om Prakash (21), a Bihari labourer severely injured in the mishap, is out of danger. The RMC Yard police have registered a case under IPC Section 304-A (causing accidental death due to negligence) and 337 and 338.

The police arrested site engineer Uma Shankar (40), a resident of Old Airport Road, and builder Chandranna.

The police said the incident took place at 4.40 am when 50 labourers had been on the night shift on different floors. Part of the support structure on third-floor meant for the labourers to move around and stand broke along with the concrete structure it was attached to.

Preliminary inquiry revealed that the scaffolding was fixed to loose soil that gave away under the weight of the concrete mixture.

The construction crew was working in two shifts pouring concrete on the roof of the building, the construction of which had been awarded by the APMC Yard to a private contractor.

Rahul and Rakesh plunged 30 feet below and were buried in a large amount of concrete poured on them by the pipes. “About 50 people were working at the time,” said Palani, who works at the APMC Yard for over 34 years.

Palani, who was sleeping on the pavement near the shop selling garlic, was woken by the thunderous crashing sound that triggered chaos under a cloud of dust. “We could hear screams from the collapsed scaffolding,” Palani added.

An earth mover removed the collapsed scaffolding to rescue the trapped labourers, while it took an hour for fire and emergency services to arrive and begin rescue efforts.

“We’re not sure if the contract or tender norms had allowed labourers to work at that time. We’ll go through the contract and add appropriate sections if the builders had flouted the norms,” DCP North Division N Shashi Kumar said, adding that the police was busy shifting the injured to the hospital.

Local MLA K Gopalaiah accused the site engineer and APMC yard of negligence. “Obviously, they fixed the scaffolding on loose soil without precaution,” he said.

Traders told the MLA that the multi-level car park facility was redundant since few cars arrive at the market frequented by trucks laden with vegetables and grains. They accused APMC officials of carrying out the project to make money.

V Manjunath, a coconut trader in the area, said the officials went ahead with the project without consulting the traders.

Yeshwanthpura APMC Yard Federation president Ramesh Chandra Lahoti said the state government decided on the multi-level car park facility. “We asked for cold storage and warehouse to stock farm produce. But a mafia within the committee prefers big-ticket projects no one could use,” he said.

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Building collapse in Bengaluru: 2 killed 8 injured 

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