Two children were killed and another received serious injuries on Monday morning, when the wall of a private factory collapsed on them at the Howrah Industrial Estate, in Dasnagar.
Both Raju Roy, 5, and Anjana Baidya, 8, died on the spot. The injured girl, Rubina Halder, 7, was taken to Howrah General Hospital and later shifted to Calcutta Medical College and Hospital. Her condition was stated to be critical.
Raju, Anjana and Rubina were bathing in a tank when the boundary wall crashed on them around 10.15 am. “The wall encircles the pond. The children were close to the steps of the pond when a major portion of the wall fell on them,” said Zulfiquar Hasan, superintendent of police, Howrah.
Local people said they heard a loud splash. “We rushed to the pond. A part of the wall had fallen into it. Rubina was trapped under the bricks. But the other two children could not be seen,” said Rameshwar Sahu, an eyewitness. The pile of bricks in the pond made the search difficult.
The unconscious Rubina was first sent to hospital. “We had to search for nearly half-an-hour to fish out the bodies,” added another resident.
Local people demonstrated in front of the factory demanding compensation for the victims. They said they had asked the factory-owner to repair the wall but he never bothered to do so.
Another two-year-old girl, Rehana Khatun, was killed and her parents and elder brother were seriously injured at Maheshtala, in South 24-Parganas, when a wall collapsed on them.