This is how Shiv Sena leader caused Ghatkopar building collapse that killed 17
The Bruhanmumbai Municipal Corporation in its report has held Shiv Sena leader Sunil Shitap responsible for the Ghatkopar building collapse that killed 17 people and injured 25. In a 32-page report, the inquiry panel set up by the civic body has stated that unauthorised construction work carried out by Shitap was the whole and sole reason for the building collapse.
Almost a month after the building collapse, the report details how Shitap caused the unfortunate event. Shitap has been named solely responsible for the loss of the life and property in the tragedy. Here is the chain of events that led to the death of 17 residents.
Sunil Shitap in 2009 combined two flats that belonged to him on the ground floor of Siddhi Sai building. He then gave it on lease to a maternity home. Despite Shitap not obtaining a completion certificate, the local ward health officer gave his permission for the maternity home. For years everybody turned a blind eye to the irregularity. In July this year, Shitap moved to open his own maternity clinic. He began making alterations to his ground floor flat without permission. Shitap had carried out renovation work without adequate and scientific propping.
The committee noted that a sanitary inspector visited the site, but did not prepare an inspection note. The changes made to the building were never checked either by the Building Proposal Department or the Assistant Engineer (Building and Factory). The report also suggests that Sai Siddhi was not in the list of dilapidated buildings marked by BMC. However, One structural audit carried out by a resident suggested that it required immediate major repairs.
The committee gave a clean chit to three civic officials since it found 'no documentary evidence' against them. It has, however, held executive engineer Sudhanshu Diwedi guilty of negligence But the report says building came crashing down not because it was dilapidated but because of unauthorised renovation work carried out by Shitap. Vinod Chithore, director of Engineering services and Chandrashekhar Chore, deputy municipal commissioner have asked for the Shiv Sena leader to be prosecuted for this crime by the BMC and the police.