KOLKATA: (UPDATE) Defence Minister Manohar Parrikar today directed the armed forces to provide all assistance in relief and rescue operations in the flyover collapse in Kolkata. Read More
Police today sealed the local office of IVRCL, a Hyderabad-based company which had taken up the construction work a flyover here, a portion of which collapsed on a congested road intersection killing 18 people. Read More
Motionless bodies, body parts smeared in blood, scattered iron girdles and concrete slabs of collapsed part of an under-construction flyover were at the site teeming with hundreds of policemen, rescue workers, Armymen, a couple of hours after the tragedy.
Scattered shoes, slippers, water bottles, broken glass panes, hand bags were seen all over the busy Vivekananda Road and Tagore Street crossing spot, called the Ganesh Talkies area, as the security personnel and rescuers were sifting through the rubble in search of survivors. Read More
Amid sights of despair and distress, angry locals vented their ire against the West Bengal government's "feeble" attempts to rescue the injured from the debris of the flyover that collapsed in the city on Thursday. Read More
Their grievances were against the state's disaster management units which, they said, "arrived late".
Many people protested when city mayor Sovan Chattopadhyay arrived at the spot to take stock of the situation.
"The teams came late and with nothing that could help in the rescue process," a resident of Girish Park area, that is close to the collapse site, told IANS.
"The team took gas cutters, beam cutters, ring cutters from an adjacent shop. They just came wearing jackets," said another.
A long section of a road overpass under construction collapsed Thursday in a crowded Kolkata neighborhood, with tons of concrete and steel slamming into midday traffic, leaving at least 21 people dead and scores of others injured in the Indian city, police said.
Rescuers used saws, small cranes and their bare hands to dig through the wreckage in search of survivors.
At least 21 people were killed, a police official said on condition of anonymity because he was not authorized to speak to the media. It was not immediately clear how many people remained missing.
Yogesh Sharma was sitting at a small roadside tea stand with friends when the overpass, which spanned nearly the width of the city street and was designed to ease traffic through the densely crowded neighborhood, "came down with a huge crashing sound."
"I left my cup of tea and ran," said Sharma, a 23-year-old resident of the Bara Bazaar neighborhood. "I was crying at the spot."
Smashed yellow taxis, destroyed rickshaws and the bloody legs of trapped people jutted from the collapsed girders and concrete slabs. READ MORE
A senior official of the infrastructure company that was in-charge of the construction of a Kolkata flyover, a portion of which collapsed on Thursday killing at least 14, described the incident as an "act of god."
"This particular work was given to us by the government of Kolkata. 60 to 70 percent is already over. One girder missed and the second one fell. This is how the accident has taken place... it is nothing but god's act," K.P. Rao, a senior official of the Hyderabad-headquartered IVRCL group, told the media. READ
Congress president Sonia Gandhi on Thursday expressed shock and anguish over the flyover collapse in Kolkata, in which 14 people were killed.
"Extending her condolences to the family members of the deceased, Smt. Gandhi hoped that the injured are being suitably treated," tweeted INC India, the official Twitter account of the Indian National Congress.
"She has instructed the PCC (Pradesh Congress Committee) and Congress frontal organizations to assist in relief efforts," the party tweeted. READ
Amit Shah asks Bengal party unit to join rescue operation
Condoling the death of people in the collapse of under-construction flyover in Kolkata today, BJP president Amit Shah has asked the West Bengal party unit to join the rescue operations.
"Distressed to learn about an under-construction bridge collapse in Kolkata. Have instructed the WB unit to assist in the rescue operation," he said in a tweet.
At least 18 people were killed, over 60 others injured and many trapped as a portion of an under-construction two km flyover collapsed on a congested road intersection in Kolkata, crushing people, vehicles and hawkers.
Two army columns and three medical teams have been sent to support and carry rescue operations at the flyover collapse site here, an army spokesperson said on Thursday.
The rescue operations may go on through the night, the spokesperson said.
Fourteen people were killed when a portion of a flyover under construction here collapsed on Thursday, burying several vehicles, West Bengal Chief Minister Mamata Banerjee said.
At least 17 others were injured and taken to hospital, the chief minister said.
She announced a compensation of Rs.5 lakh to the families of the dead and Rs.2 lakh each for those critically injured as well as Rs.1 lakh for those who suffered minor injuries.
At least 10 persons were killed when a portion of an under-construction flyover collapsed today in busy north Kolkata, leaving scores of others trapped under the debris.
Police sources said that 10 persons were killed in the incident, while several others were injured. The death toll could go up, they said.
Several injured persons were rescued from under the debris and were being sent to different hospitals in the vicinity.
"Two persons were brought dead and two others were in serious condition," Kolkata Medical College and Hospital superintendent Sikha Banerjee said.
"More injured persons are still being brought in to the hospital," Banerjee said.
Cutting short her visit to West Midnapore district, Chief Minister Mamata Banerjee, who was campaigning there, rushed back to the city and visited the site and directed the authorities to speed up the relief and rescue operations carried out by police, fire brigade and disaster management personnel.
NDRF Director General O P Singh said in Delhi that the teams are being sent from their local base at Rajarhat, near the Kolkata airport.
“We heard a noise and got scared. Yesterday it was welded. The bridge collapsed. I think at least 150 people are under the debris,” an eye-witness Ramesh Kejriwal told ANI.
“It was a powerful collapse…sent shivers down my spine,” another eye-witness added.
The army, police and the ambulance reached the accident spot to evacuate the victims.
Several passenger vehicles, including a bus, were trapped under the debris, as operations were on to clear the rubble and bring out those trapped under.
Huge cranes and other rescue vehicles were pressed into service to clear the debris and bring out the injured.
A PTI correspondent who was at the accident site, saw a number of severely injured persons lying in a pool of blood.
At least a few persons were seen trapped under vehicles, concrete and heavy steel girders.
The incident took place at around noon at the busy Rabindra Sarani-K K Tagore Street crossing near Burrabazar, the trading hub and one of the most congested areas in the city.
A number of hawkers operate under the flyover which is also used for parking several vehicles.
NDRF personnel were also rushed to the site to to assist in the rescue operations.
(With inputs from ANI/PTI)