TN wall collapse: Owner of house arrested

Chief Minister Edappadi K Palaniswami visited the site and enhanced the monetary compensation from Rs 4 lakh to Rs 10 lakh. (PTI photo)

The owner of the house of the “untouchability wall” that collapsed following heavy rain on a row of houses killing 17 people in Mettupalayam in Coimbatore district was arrested on Tuesday.

The arrest came even as Opposition parties alleged that the owner of the house had constructed the wall to keep the families belonging to Scheduled Caste (SC) away from his premises.

Chief Minister Edappadi K Palaniswami visited the site and enhanced the monetary compensation from Rs 4 lakh to Rs 10 lakh to the next kin of the deceased while promising government jobs for family members of those killed in the wall collapse incident.

However, Palaniswami did not entertain questions on the Opposition’ allegations about “untouchability wall” by merely saying the culprits will be punished in accordance with the law.

The chief minister said that the owner of the house has been arrested and any progress in the case can happen only when the questioning of the arrested ends.

Mettupalayam police arrested Sivasubramanian, a textile showroom owner, on Tuesday, a day after a portion of the damp 15-foot high compound wall came crashing down on adjoining tiled roof houses in Nadur village near Mettupalayam. Sivasubramanian has been booked under section 304 A (causing death by negligence) of IPC.

Seventeen people, including 10 women and two children, were killed in the wall collapse incident on Monday morning. More than 20 people who protested the incident were beaten up and taken into custody by police on Monday evening.

DMK president M K Stalin, who visited the spot, blamed “negligence” by ministers concerned and district authorities for the compound wall collapse.

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