Four migrant labourers from Murshidabad were killed when a service elevator failed and crashed at a construction site in Mumbai’s Hanumangali on Saturday.
A fifth person from Maharashtra also died and four workers were injured.
Sources said the incident occurred in Hanumangali, where the construction of a new building had reached the 16th story and was still in progress.
The deceased were Bharatpur residents Abhinab Das, 35, Bharat Mondal, 30, and Lakshman Mondal, 45. Khargram resident Chinmay Konai was also among the deceased as was a youth from Maharashtra. Except for Chinmay, the three other youths hailed from the same village, Gadda, and were friends.
“The youths had come back home during the migrant saga in March 2020 and were at home without work until November that year. They were all supposed to come home in a few months for Durga Puja,” said Anil Mondal, Bharat’s father, breaking down in tears.
Sources said around 6 lakh migrant workers from Murshidabad work in Kerala, Maharashtra, Delhi and Gujarat, mostly as construction workers. The district is the largest reserve of migrant workers from the state, ahead of Malda, with over 4 lakh such workers.
Police sources in Murshidabad said families in Gadda had received the news over phone by Saturday evening, barely an hour after the incident reportedly occurred at 5pm.
“We too were first informed through the media. We confirmed the news later by calling our Mumbai counterparts,” said district magistrate Sharad Dwivedi.
“We have informed the disaster management department, but we are still unclear as to when the youths’ bodies will be sent home,” he added.
Post-mortems were reportedly completed at a Mumbai hospital by noon on Sunday.
“We will try to bring the bodies home by Monday night for the families,” said a source in Kandi police.