Mumbai Building Collapse: Cab driver Satish Kshetra was resting with his guests in his room at a Naik Municipal Society building in suburban Kurla when he suddenly felt an earthquake and felt the neighboring wing of his building broken , the first thought that came to his mind was to rescue his family members and guests.
As the common staircase on the east and west sides of the affected D wing also collapsed, Mr. Kshetre, a resident of the third floor of the west, prepared a rope using a sari and rescued all ten people, including his family members and a few. Guests who come to him with the help of local people.
At least 14 people were killed and 13 were injured when the four-storey building collapsed on Monday midnight, municipal officials said on Tuesday.
All the four floors located on the eastern side of D building in Naik Nagar Cop Housing Society were damaged in the accident. On the west side, the ground floor and first floors were affected while the remaining three floors remained intact. “For a moment I thought we would not be saved, but by the grace of God we are alive,” said Kshetra.
Mumbai Building Collapse: Recalling the horrors of the night, he said that it was like an earthquake.
“The whole building (D wing) shook and immediately, the adjacent eastern side collapsed with a loud, deafening noise,” he said.
Mr Kshatre said that at least 10 people, including his family members and five guests, were present inside his room at the time of the incident, which happened around 11.40 pm on Monday. He said some of them were already in bed while others were awake.
He said, “For a moment I was stunned. But after a few moments, I mustered up some courage to save myself and my family members.”
Satish Kshetra said that the common stairs of D building have collapsed.
“I made ropes out of saris and with the help of local people rescued all the ten people inside my room safely,” he said, adding that those trapped on the fourth floor were also rescued in a similar manner.
The 27-year-old, who drives the app-based cab, said he had to shift to another rented accommodation on Tuesday due to the dilapidated condition of the Naik Municipal Society building.
Mr. Kshere said that each floor of the affected building has four flats, two each on the east side and two each on the west side.
He said that most of the residents of the society are tenants but some rooms are vacant.
Mr Kshatre said a family of three had come to live in the affected building two days ago, but they were trapped under the ruble.
Devraj Badiya, a resident of Kurla, was eagerly waiting for the news of his younger brother Ramesh’s whereabouts while waiting on the road outside the affected building.
However, when Ramesh was pulled out of the rubble, the restless wait turned into despair. Mumbai Building Collapse
Devraj said that Ramesh had shifted to the affected building two days back as the condition of the building where we were staying was bad.
“My brother shifted to a dilapidated building because of the urgency of the house,” she said, crying.
Earlier in the day, the Badiya family was requesting rescue teams to locate Ramesh at the bottom of the crashed staircase. Ramesh’s son had told him that the former was trapped under the ladder.
Three members of the Badiya family had shifted to Nayak Nagar Society a few days back.
Devraj said one family member died while two others were rescued during the day.
Rahul Ramteke, a Class 12 student living in a neighboring slum, saw the four-storey building crash with a loud noise and the water tank on its roof rammed into the campus wall after falling on the road.
“Some people from the third floor of the building were shouting for help when the building was coming down,” said Ramteke, who was checking his mobile phone at the time of the incident.
Ashok Rajguru, the conductor of Best Undertaking, told PTI that he was on the bed after hearing the loud noise.
“When he came out, he saw a thick cloud of dust surrounding the crashed building,” he said. NDRF Deputy Commandant Ashish Kumar told PTI that more than 100 NDRF personnel are involved in the rescue operation.
“Our three dogs are also helping in the search for the survivors,” Kumar said. He said rain slowed down the operation.