National Human Rights Commission on Wednesday held the then MCD responsible for a building collapse in Karol Bagh area in 2012 in which four people lost their lives and issued a notice to Delhi Government to show cause why it should not be asked to pay monitory relief to the kin of the victims.
According to an NHRC statement released on Wednesday, it has issued a notice to the Delhi Government through its Chief Secretary, to show cause why the Commission should not recommend Rs three lakh each as monetary relief to the families of the four persons who died in a building collapse incident on March 30, 2012 at Prasad Nagar in the Karol Bagh Zone of Municipal Corporation of Delhi.
The Chief Secretary has been further directed to submit a report stating therein the action taken or contemplated to be taken against the officers responsible for the negligence. He has been given six weeks time to respond.
“After careful consideration of the expert opinions from M/s Shriram Institute for Industrial Research Pvt. Ltd., Structural Engineer of M/s Sheltera Consultants Pvt. Ltd. and IIT Delhi, Justice D. Murugesan, Member of the Commission found that the main cause of the collapse of the building was inadequate structural design and insufficient strength of concrete used,” the statement said.
The Commission has also observed that the callousness, negligence and inaction on the part of MCD officials for the collapse of the structure was clearly established.
The defence put forward by the civic agency about the unauthorized construction for demolition sent to Prasad Nagar Police Station for taking action under section 344 (2) of DMC Act vide letter dated March 30, 2012 was an attempt to cover all its responsibilities.
The Joint Commissioner of Police in his communication dated July 24, 2012 had indicated that as soon as the construction began, Prasad Nagar police had intimated the MCD Control Room on March 9, 2012.
On March 10, 2012, a complaint was lodged by the local police with the LG’s Office. On March 13, 2012, an intimation was given in writing to the Deputy Commissioner, MCD, Karol Bagh Zone by SHO, Prasad Nagar.
However, the local police did not receive any instruction from the MCD to stop work and the under construction building collapsed on March 30, 2012. The Section 475 of DMC Act mandates the police only to inform the civic agency about the unauthorized construction and the police can act only after it receives instructions to stop the construction.
NHRC had taken cognizance of the matter on the basis of a media report provided by a complainant seeking intervention of the Commission in the matter.