The Mumbai Police have written to the BMC for copies of the original structural plans of the four-storey Siddhi Sai building that collapsed in Ghatkopar Tuesday. With the building reduced to rubble, the police are unable to recover its plans from residents who were part of its managing committee.
“Everything has been destroyed in the collapse. Otherwise we would only have to ask residents for the documents. We have now written to the BMC ward office for all information related to the building,” said a senior police officer.
The police is seeking details of the building’s structural stability, its design as per the original plans of the builder and the alleged alterations made by the secretary, Sunil Shitap, who is under arrest.
The officer added that documents relating to the renovation of the ground floor, drawn by an architect hired by Shitap, have also been seized from the latter’s home. The architect, who has been named as an accused, has not yet been arrested.
“We are trying understand exactly what the accused planned to construct on the ground floor,” said the officer.
Shitap, who earlier ran a nursing on the ground floor of the building, had shut it down a month ago and had been renovating it for another purpose, the police said.
On Tuesday morning, the whole structure came crashing down after one the beams supporting the building was allegedly knocked down hours previously.
Seventeen people died in the collapse and another dozen were injured, of whom seven are in the ICU at Rajawadi Hospital.
With the police probing allegations that Shitap had threatened residents who opposed his renovation plans, the police has written to the Registrar of Co-operative Societies for details of the minutes of the meetings held by the society’s members, said the officer.
“We would then know whether any residents placed their complaints on record,” said the officer.
With the site having been cleared of rubble, the BMC has deployed a number of staff to comb through it for belongings of the families who stayed there. The police is also looking for the remains of the CCTV cameras mounted on the ground floor and the DVR machine.
“If the machine is found in a condition in which the footage can be recovered, it will give us an idea of the activities that were taking place on the ground floor before the collapse,” said the official.