New Delhi, July 19 (IANS) Rescuers on Sunday frantically searched for a nine-year-old girl, who is suspected to be trapped in the debris of a house that collapsed here overnight, while the toll rose to five.
A five-storey house crumbled at Vishnu Garden in west Delhi on Saturday night, instantly killing three people. A police official on Sunday said 13 people were also seriously injured.
“We are still looking for a nine-year-old girl who, the residents believe, is still trapped somewhere under the debris. The process is on and we are not going to call it off until we find her,” Delhi Fire Services chief A.K. Sharma told IANS.
Sharma said though the chances of the survival of the child are remote, nothing can be said until she is found.
Delhi’s Public Works Department Minister Satyendra Jain announced an ex-gratia payment of Rs.2 lakh for next of kin of those killed and Rs.50,000 for the seriously injured.
“A magisterial probe has been ordered to find out the actual culprit,” Jain said at the site on Sunday. He said the report would be submitted in a week.
Police suspect the building, located in a narrow, winding lane, was illegally built.
Municipal authorities said the permission granted to the builder was only for three storeys, and not five floors.
“The top two storeys in the building were built without permission, as the permission granted for the construction was only for three storeys. In fact, the base of the building was also week,” said an official of the South Delhi Municipal Corporation (SDMC).
The National Disaster Response Force is also involved in the search for possible survivors.