Mumbai continues to reel under persistent monsoon rains and the problems go unabated as more and more rain related issues continue to haunt the city. After potholes menace the city is reeling under tree falls and building collapses causes ripples in the minds of people.
Dilapidated buildings cause worry for inmates and the Deonar building collapse is one such tragedy awakening people. BMC had issued Public Notices through various news dailies asking the inmates of these building to evacuate them and look for alternative accommodation. It is time to reconstruct these unsafe buildings or it may cause disaster during severe rains. The major places where such unsafe buildings exist are: Mahim, Bhandup, Sion Koliwada, Antop Hill, Kurla, Tilak Nagar.
The water soaking of these buildings during heavy rains may cause dampness and the chances of these buildings collapsing is very high. To avoid human loss and loss to the property, BMC has served notice well in advance to residents. In the past, we have seen many building collapsed during rainy season in Mumbai. Let the residents vacate dilapidated building and does not make it a prestige issue and stay at these buildings and risk their lives against the instructions of BMC. Deonar building collapse opened up Pandora’s Box and brought to light the nexus between politicians and the builders. There is no doubt that it is a self-inflicted disaster. Stitch in time saves nine is true. Regular maintenance of old buildings is the only solution to enhance the life of buildings. It is time to realise harsh realities of life in the best way possible to look for favourable solutions. It was indeed a case of sheer negligence.
The callous attitude of BMC and the carefree attitude of the residents struggling for survival in an old building all caused the collapse. In the recent building crash incident is yet another case, where BMC showed its apathy in dealing with old buildings. These old structures could not take weight and was declared unsafe for stay six years back. The Government of Maharashtra must think and act to save lives of poor people dying on this count and in view of the fact there are thousands of such buildings in Mumbai and suburbs remain insecure for occupation. Unauthorised construction and dilapidated building are the root cause for all the major building collapses in the city. It is indeed a very sad and shocking incident.
(The remaining part of this article will continue tomorrow)
(The views expressed by the author in the article are his/her own.)