Chennai: Nine more bodies were recovered today, taking the toll in the collapse of the under construction multi-storeyed building here to 20 while two persons were pulled out alive as the massive non-stop rescue efforts stretched into the third day.
"So far, 20 persons have died, 15 identified and five yet to be identified. Out of the 15, six belong to Tamil Nadu, five to Andhra Pradesh and four are from Odisha," Tamil Nadu Director of Public Health Dr K Kulandaisamy told PTI.
A man and a woman were pulled out alive after 40 hours of ordeal by rescue workers, who continued their hard toil clearing debris caused by the collapse of the 11-storeyed residential building on June 28 evening at Moulivakkam in the western suburb, about 20 km from here.
So far, 23 people have been rescued by the personnel of National Disaster Response Force (NDRF), city police commandos, Fire and Rescue Services and Home Guards among others and are undergoing treatment in hospitals.
The fate of an estimated 33 persons, most of them construction labourers, suspected to be trapped under the rubble is not known, police said.
Chief Minister Jayalalithaa, who visited the spot last evening, enhanced the relief for the kin of victims hailing from the state from Rs two lakh to Rs seven lakh.
With several of the victims and survivors hailing from Andhra Pradesh, Chief Minister of the neighbouring state N Chandrababu Naidu visited the collapse site and the hospital where the injured were undergoing treatment.
Naidu, who appealed to the Centre to extend more support to expedite the rescue efforts, assured the victims of necessary medical care and relief on a "war-footing".
He has already announced an ex-gratia of Rs five lakh to the kin of the deceased from his state.
Former Union Minister K Chiranjeevi visited the mishap site and was briefed by government officials on the incident and rescue efforts. He also called on the survivors and kin of victims.
Six persons, including two owners and two engineers, had been arrested under various sections of the IPC in connection with the collapse.