Owner held in Delhi building collapse case

Delhi Police on Tuesday arrested the owner of the ill-fated building in North Delhi that collapsed on Monday, killing two siblings and injuring an elderly man.

According to the police, the accused Mohak Arora resident of Panjabi Basti, Subji Mandi, was arrested in the building collapse case under sections 288, 304, and 34 of the Indian Penal Code.

Though the police is still investigating the incident, nearby residents alleged that renovation work that began 7-8 days ago, could be the possible reason of the building collapse.

According to Section 288 of the IPC, whoever, in pulling down or repairing any building, knowingly or negligently omits to take such order with that building as is sufficient to guard against any probable danger to human life from the fall of that building, or of any part thereof, shall be punished with imprisonment of either description for a term which may extend to six months, or with fine which may extend to one thousand rupees, or with both.

The four-storey building which was around 50 to 60 years old and was not declared dangerous, collapsed in the Sabzi Mandi area of the national capital on Monday.

A senior official in North Delhi Municipal Corporation (North MCD) said that there are 20 such buildings in the area, i.e., ward number 13, Ghanta Ghar Sabzi Mandi, which are over 60-70 years old and have been identified as dangerous buildings.

“Out of these 20 buildings declared as dangerous, nine are located in the same street where this was located,” the official said adding that this particular building was not earmarked as dangerous.

The official further stated that the civic authority has conducted a survey for the detection of dangerous buildings in all six zones before the onset of monsoon season. During the survey, around 700 properties under the North MCD were found in a dangerous condition, while 444 buildings were identified for carrying out necessary repairs.