6 killed, 40 injured in Ahmedabad hotel collapse

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Ahmedabad, Feb 3 (UNI) At least six people were feared killed and 40 seriously injured when a five-storey hotel near Kalupur railway station here collapsed this morning.

According to fire brigade officials, Hotel Shakunt caved in like a pack of cards at 0900 hrs.

'' More than 30 people are still buried under the debris. So far, one person has been rescued from the rubble. The seriously injured people have been shifted to the Civil Hospital, while others were admitted to various hospitals.

According to people living in the same area, most of the victims were students who had come to Ahmedabad to appear in a railway recruitment board examination to be held today.

Authorities did not rule out the possibility of death toll going up.

Chief Minister Narendra Modi announced an ex-gratia of Rs one lakh to the next of kin of the victims from the Chief Minister's Relief Fund. Mr Modi also called a meeting of the state Disaster Management Group.

State Home Minister Amit Shah and Ahmedabad Municipal Commissioner I P Gautam rushed to the accident spot to supervise relief and rescue operations.

State Health Minister Jaynarayan Vyas has reached the city Civil Hospital to oversee medical help being extended to the injured.

Sniffer dogs have been pressed into service to locate the people buried under the debris. Some adjoining hotels have been also vacated as a precautionary measure.

Road traffic has been affected due to accident. Relief and rescue work was in progress. Ahmedabad Corporation senior officers and some members of the Gujarat Legislative Assembly have rushed to the spot.

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