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Solan building collapse: 2 days after tragedy, SIT constituted, samples picked from site

Deputy Commissioner, Solan, K C Chaman said, “The state government has also announced ex-gratia relief of Rs four lakh to the family members of each victim that died in the tragedy, Rs 15,000 to the grievously injured persons and Rs 5,000 to other injured.”

Two days after the death of 14 persons, including 13 JCOs posted at Dagshai and one local woman, in a building collapse at Kumarhatti-Nahan road in Solan, Himachal Pradesh Police constituted a Special Investigation Team (SIT) and collected samples from the site Tuesday.

Deputy Commissioner, Solan, K C Chaman said, “The state government has also announced ex-gratia relief of Rs four lakh to the family members of each victim that died in the tragedy, Rs 15,000 to the grievously injured persons and Rs 5,000 to other injured.”

The samples, including that of soil, cemented materials, iron pillars will be sent for forensic examination to the State Forensic Laboratory, Junga, in Shimla.

Meanwhile, tenants residing in an under-construction building adjoining the collapse site also vacated their accommodation and shifted to another place in Kumarhatti. SHO, Dharampur police station, Inspector Daya Ram Thakur, said, “We urged the family to shift from the nearby building and they shifted keeping in the view their safety.”

SP, Solan, Madhusudan, said, “The SIT has started its investigation and samples were collected for forensic examination. We will collect more samples. The SIT is headed by DSP, Parwanoo, Yogesh Rolta. We have sought documentary record of land registration on the name of building owner, Balbir Singh, alias, Lalit, from the
Revenue Department, Panchayat Department. The building owner, Balbir Singh, will be arrested after collecting all the relevant proof.”

The four-storey building housing Sahaj Tandoori Dhaba had collapsed Sunday and 14 persons, including the wife of building owner Archna Devi, were killed on July 14. Three bodies were recovered from the debris on July 14 and other 11 were recovered on Monday.

Around 35 Army personnel, including 30 JCOs and five drivers from nearby Dagshai Cantonment area, had come to the eating joint for lunch when the building collapsed.

Owner Balbir Singh had told The Indian Express, “There was construction work going on near my building. Heavy machines, JCBs, trucks made rounds to the construction site. I am sure the heavy vehicles had an adverse effect on the slope and the recent heavy rains weakened the foundations of my building. I had purchased the land in 2010 for residential and commercial purpose. I took all the necessary measures required during construction. I also lost my wife in this tragedy. It could have happened anywhere.”

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