Two days after hundreds of residents of Bowbazar in central Kolkata were evacuated and shifted to hotels after their houses developed cracks due to the ongoing work for East West Metro corridor, a three-storey building collapsed on Tuesday, spreading panic in the area. The Kolkata Metro Railway Corporation (KMRCL) authorities stated that they will rebuild the damaged houses.
Cracks have been noticed in about 50 houses at Durgapituri Lane and Sankrapara Lane in the area since Sunday, following the tunnelling work by the KMRCL authorities. There were reports regarding portions of some buildings having collapsed on Sunday with chunks of concrete falling off. Following the reports, the authorities cordoned off the area and evacuated about 300 residents.
On Tuesday morning, a three-storey house, that had been tilting since Sunday, collapsed. No lives were lost since the metro authorities, Kolkata Municipal Corporation and Kolkata Police had already evacuated the residents in the neighbourhood.
Owner of the collapsed house Sonali Sil is at her wit’s end.
”My daughter is scheduled to get married in November. We have jewellery, clothes and other valuables in the building. Also, my husband runs a printing press on the ground floor of the building. When cracks came to notice, we left our home. Today (Tuesday) we heard that the house collapsed.
We are at our wits end. How long can we stay in a hotel? All our documents are there in the house,” said Sil.
The metro authorities stated that they had given an option to the residents of the damaged houses of making arrangements for rented accommodation.
“We have had a talk with Mayor. We will build the houses, which have been damaged. We have also given an option to the people, who are currently in hotels, if they want to get an apartment and we will pay the rent,” said Ajoy Kumar Nandy, KMRCL GM, Administration.