India building collapse near Mumbai kills 34

India building collapse near Mumbai kills 34

At least 34 people have died and dozens more are injured after a building under construction collapsed near the Indian city of Mumbai, officials say.

Many others are feared trapped beneath the seven-storey building in Thane, Indian media report, quoting officials.Police said the building was being constructed illegally and four floors were already occupied.Building collapses are common in India. Poor construction material and practices are often blamed.The BBC’s Rajini Vaidyanathan in Mumbai says a growing population and a lack of space has seen an increase in the number of high rises, but many builders fail to take sufficient safety precautions, or obtain proper permission to build.

A police official in Thane, Maharashtra state, said a section of the building collapsed on Thursday evening, bringing the entire structure down.He said at least nine children were among the dead.Rescue efforts continued through the night.The disaster management officials in Thane district said 57 people were injured.Most of the victims were construction workers who were staying in the building, he added.

One witness, named only as Ramlal, said the building appeared to tilt before quickly collapsing.”The building collapsed like a pack of cards within three to four seconds,” he said.In December at least 13 people died when part of a half-constructed building collapsed in the Wagholi area of Maharashtra.Last September at least six people were killed when a building collapsed in Pune city in Maharashtra. – BBC