Mohali building collapse: Debris removal operations at site

Chandigarh, Feb 9 (PTI) Debris removal operations were on at the site where a three-storey building collapsed in Punjab's Mohali district, with officials on Sunday saying there were slim chances of anyone still trapped under the fallen structure.

One person was killed in the incident and two others were injured after the commercial building collapsed on Saturday afternoon.

'The debris is being removed from the site. NDRF officials told us that no one appears to be still trapped under the debris. However, NDRF is still on standby for the moment just in case the need arises,” Kharar's Sub-Divisional Magistrate (SDM) Himanshu Jain said.

District administration authorities and police have checked with the contractor and company officials at the site and were told that no labour or any employee of theirs was missing.

Taking serious note of the building collapse, Chief Minister Amarinder Singh had asked the Mohali Additional District Magistrate to conduct a thorough probe into the incident and submit his report within a week.  “A JCB machine driver died in the incident,” Mohali Deputy Commissioner Girish Dayalan had said. The body of Harvinder Singh was taken out by rescuers late on Saturday evening.

The commercial building collapsed when a JCB machine was digging an adjoining plot for construction of a basement, Jain had said.

The officials said the heavy earth moving machine might have hit the foundation of the building, but added that the exact cause of the incident would be known after the inquiry.

Three persons were rescued on Saturday, officials had said.

A 30-member team of the National Disaster Response Force was earlier engaged in the rescue operation and one more NDRF team from Ludhiana was also called.

Dayalan had said that the SDM of Kharar has been ordered to inquire into the incident.  'How did this happen and did they (builder) have requisite permission to do this will be known only after the inquiry,' said Dayalan.

The probe would also ascertain if the construction was illegal or not, a state government statement had said. PTI SUN VSD DV DV