Monday, 30th October 2017

E- paper

Balcony collapse injures 2

The first-floor balcony of a three-storey building on Brabourne Road collapsed early on Monday, leaving a 70-year-old man and a child injured.

By A STAFF REPORTER
  • Published 24.10.17
  •  
The debris of the balcony that collapsed early on Monday. Picture by Sanjoy Chattopadhyaya

Brabourne Road: The first-floor balcony of a three-storey building on Brabourne Road collapsed early on Monday, leaving a 70-year-old man and a child injured.

Jaishuklal Das, the elderly man, and a 10-year-old boy were sleeping under the balcony when it came crashing down around 3.30am.

The two were taken to Calcutta Medical College and Hospital. The child was given first-aid and discharged but Das had to be admitted.

Located opposite Thapar House, the building was tagged "dangerous" a year ago, a civic official said.

"The tag means the occupants - owners and/or tenants - have to undertake repairs," the official said.

"A loud thud woke us up. There was dust all around. Through the dust we saw to our horror that the balcony had collapsed," said a 69-year-old man, who was sleeping inside the building.

The office of the headquarters traffic guard is located in the next building.

"The entire building is used for commercial purposes. The ground floor housed a crockery shop and an electrical goods shop. There were several offices in the building, including that of a jute mill," a police officer said.

"There could have been more injuries had the balcony collapsed during the daytime," said the owner of a shop close to the building.

A civic engineer said they had sent a team to demolish the remaining portion of the balcony.

There are around 3,000 "dangerous" buildings in Calcutta, most of which are in Burrabazar, Posta and parts of north Calcutta.

Six people died after portions of several buildings collapsed in the city during the monsoon.

The Calcutta Municipal Corporation Act has been amended to make it easier for owners and tenants of old, dilapidated buildings to pull down the structures and build new ones in their place.

A developer contracted to pull down an old, risky structure and build a new one will be allowed to create additional space which he can sell after rehabilitating old occupants.