80-year-old woman buried alive in house collapse

80-year-old woman buried alive in house collapse

An elderly woman was buried alive while four others, including a woman and a young boy, were injured when the wall of an old house in Lingarajapuram collapsed on them on Tuesday evening. A nine-month-old baby girl escaped miraculously. 

The deceased has been identified as Jo Mary, 80. The injured—Nirmala, 37, Joseph Paul, 47, Joseph Jacob, 12, and Gayathri, 25—are being treated at the hospital and said to be out of danger, the police said. 

Soon after the tragedy, Home Minister K J George visited the spot and supervised rescue operations. He announced a compensation of Rs three lakh for the deceased’s family and Rs 25,000 each for the injured. 

“It was an old house that was built with mud but no concrete. Hence, the wall collapsed,” he told Deccan Herald. 

Medical expenses

The two-storey house, located on third cross, Hennur Main Road, probably weakened following heavy rains in the last few days. The family is poor, hence the compensation was announced immediately. The government will also bear the medical expenses, the minister added. 

Mary’s son, Stanley Joseph Paul, owns the house. He was staying with his mother on the first floor and had rented two small houses on the ground floor to as many families. While Gayathri and her husband Venkatesh stayed in one house, Nirmala, Antony and their son Joseph Jacob and nine-month-old baby girl lived in the other house. Antony and Venkatesh were not at home when the tragedy struck, the police added. 

The building was constructed about 50 years ago, with mud as the main material. Its walls were partially tilted. 

Habitable

Although the building had developed cracks and weakened following heavy rainfall, it had appeared habitable just before the incident. Those inside tried to rush to safety, but were struck in the rubble. The police and local residents later rescued them. But Mary had died by the time she was rescued. 

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