Pulled up: Building collapse: Court holds police, MCD responsible

A city court has held the MCD and the police liable for the death of four labourers and injury to three others following the collapse of an under-construction building in Karol Bagh in March this year.

The court took note of the fact that the area police had notified the MCD that an illegal construction was being carried out in the area but neither the police nor the MCD had taken any steps to stop or demolish the construction.

Noting that the SHO of Prasad Nagar police station had informed the MCD on March 13 that an illegal building was being constructed in the area, the court observed that " both the responsible agencies failed to perform their lawful duty."

Observing that there was an urgent need to "demolish the nexus between the accused, local police and the MCD officials", the court of Additional Sessions Judge Pawan Kumar Jain directed the District Legal Services Authority (DLSA), central district, to pay compensation to the families of the deceased and the injured workers.

The judge also directed DLSA to "recover the amount from the accused persons as well as from the Delhi Police and the MCD, as it deemed fit."

The four-storey building, which was allegedly constructed within 22 days, crashed around midnight on March 31.

Several labourers were sleeping inside when the incident took place.

Six fire tenders were sent to the spot for rescue operations and it took three days to remove the debris.

Police had arrested the owner of the building Rama Nand and his brother-in-law Parveen Kumar, who allegedly used inferior material for constructing the building. Further, they had not taken approval from the MCD and other agencies.

Nand and Kumar were arrested in April on charges of culpable homicide and causing grievous hurt.

... contd.

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