Mall's occupancy certificate withdrawn

Main column intact, building safe, insist Mantri's engineers

Mall's occupancy certificate withdrawn

 BBMP has withdrawn Mantri Mall’s occupancy certificate and has initiated an inquiry into the incident of wall collapse there on Monday.

Speaking to DH, Palike Commissioner N Manjunatha Prasad said the incident seems to have happened due to dampness in the adjoining sewage pipe.

“Our section engineers are probing the matter. We will consider reissuing the certificate only if the faults are rectified to the satisfaction of our engineers,” said Prasad.
Mayor G Padmavathi too visited the spot and told reporters that BBMP engineers will assess the strength of the building.

Meanwhile, mall authorities called the builder, who rushed to the spot with the structural engineers to assess the damage and to check if there could be further collapses.

“The main column is intact and the building is safe as far as the structure is concerned.
The portion of the building that collapsed extends up to 1.5 metres from the building, which is called cantilever (chajja). The cantilever on the third floor terrace collapsed and it came down, dragging the two lower levels and the debris fell on the compound wall between Mantri Square mall and the Metro,” said Gururaj T S, consultant engineer, Mantri Developers.

“The building is seven years old and we have used standard quality material, including sand used to build similar structures. We are investigating the reason for the collapse,” he added.

Multiple water tanks, pipes
There are multiple water tanks, including the ones for fire safety and air conditioning, on the mall terrace. According to mall sources, there are water leakages from these tanks and the pipes that carry water to and from them. Leakages over a period of years dampened the balcony that collapsed on Monday.

Traffic was thrown out of gear in and around Mantri Square mall as vehicles coming out of the mall and those waiting outside to enter inside were gridlocked.

Police were finding it difficult to manage traffic as fire tenders and police vehicles crowded the road.

Traffic gridlocked
The police had a tough time cordoning off the collapse area as media personnel and senior BBMP officials, including the Mayor and commissioner, thronged the area when portions of the wall were still hanging. Deputy Commissioner of Police (North) Labhu Ram ordered evacuation of people to safe locations. Traffic was thrown out of gear in and around Mantri Square mall as vehicles coming out of the mall and those waiting outside to enter inside were gridlocked. Police were finding it difficult to manage traffic as fire tenders and police vehicles crowded the road.

One of the colleagues of Lakshmamma, a housekeeping staffer who suffered injuries in the incident, said that  the injuries sustained by her were not due to the building collapse. They were a result of her fall while running outside, the colleague said.

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