Building collapse: MCD`s vacation notices to 38 `unsafe` structures
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Last Updated: Thursday, November 18, 2010, 00:33
New Delhi: Waking up to the threat posed by illegal constructions after the Laxmi Nagar tragedy, the MCD on Wednesday asked the occupants of 38 "dangerous" buildings in the East Delhi area to evacuate "at the earliest" but there seems to be no proper plan for providing shelter to them.

"During a survey, basements of at least 38 buildings were found to be filled with water. We have issued notice to vacate these houses immediately for the residents' safety," Municipal Corporation of Delhi spokesperson Deep Mathur said.

The MCD said it may also demolish the building adjoining the collapsed house as well as another building nearby owned by the same builder if they are found unsafe.

The preventive action has come in the wake of Monday night's building collapse in the congested Lalita Park in Laxmi Nagar that has claimed 67 lives. The basement of the four-storey building was waterlogged for the last two months since Yamuna water flooded the area, authorities said.

"On the basis of the survey carried out in Lalita Park and adjoining colonies, MCD served vacation notices to 38 buildings where it was found that Yamuna water had seeped into basements. It appeared that the water was stagnating in basements for a long period," MCD said in a press statement.

"MCD's technical teams assessed that the water might have seeped into the foundation of the buildings, thereby posing danger to the structures...owners and residents of these buildings have been served notice to vacate buildings at the earliest," it said.

However, when enquired about the alternative accommodation or temporary shelter to be provided to the residents of the 38 buildings that have been declared unsafe, apparent lack of coordination and planning came to the fore.

The MCD said in its statement that "Divisional Commissioner of GNCTD (Delhi government) is organising relief arrangements for the weaker sections of society affected by the vacation notices".

East Delhi district Deputy Commissioner (Revenue) S S Ghonkrokta said people from two adjoining buildings were asked to vacate and now Delhi government is providing food and shelter to them. "We have already made arrangements in two community centres where around 200 people can be accommodated."

However, he said MCD did not inform the Delhi government about the vacation notices served on 38 unsafe buildings.

A senior MCD leader, on condition of anonymity, admitted that there is "lack of coordination between the corporation and Delhi government and lack of planning to accommodate the people of these buildings."

When contacted, Leader of MCD House Subhash Arya said the civic body will set up shelters for such people, if necessary.


First Published: Thursday, November 18, 2010, 00:33

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