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Friday, January 24, 2020

Month on, Vakola building collapse accused ‘evading’ cops

Sindha, on her part, had told the court that she was being targetted and that there was a threat to her life.

| Mumbai | Updated: April 14, 2014 12:44:03 am
The mishap killed seven persons. (Express archive) The mishap killed seven persons. (Express archive)

A month after the Shankar Lok building in Vakola collapsed, claiming seven lives, lawyer Sindha Sreedharan, named as an accused in the Vakola police’s FIR, is yet to appear before the police for inquiries. The police said that she has failed to turn up despite being called repeatedly, while all other people concerned, including residents and BMC officials, have already been quizzed in connection with the case.

On March 14 this year, the seven-storey building collapsed on the adjoining Catherine Chawl, killing six residents of the chawl as well as Sindha’s sister Sudha. The Sreedharan family was staying on the ground floor of the building as they had refused to vacate it. The Vakola police had subsequently registered a complaint of culpable homicide not amounting to murder against Sindha and the builder who constructed the building.”

“We have contacted Sindha repeatedly and have asked her to come to the police station so that we can record her statement, which will help bring some clarity to the matter. However, she is yet to turn u”,” said Assistant Commissioner of Police Zunjarrao Gharal, Vakola division.

Two days after the police registered an FIR in the matter, the Bombay High Court had directed the police not to take coercive action against her, saying that only one party could not be targetted. The police have since then been making inquiries with all concerned parties. Sindha, on her part, had told the court that she was being targetted and that there was a threat to her life.

Gharal added that so far the police had recorded statements from around 35 people in connection with the collapse, which included residents of the building, the chawl and concerned officers of the Brihanmumbai Municipal Corporation. “Sindha’s statement is necessary to verify the facts that have come to light in our investigations as well as for us to reach a conclusion. We know that she is still in the city,” he said.

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