NEW DELHI: A building collapse in southern India left eight people dead on Friday, an official said, the latest such disaster in the country known for its dilapidated properties and poor quality construction.
The group were among 11 employees of a state-run transport company, including bus drivers and cleaners, who were sleeping in the 60-year-old, two storey office block near a bus depo when a portion of it caved in.
“It was an old building that suddenly collapsed while the staff were asleep,” said C Suresh Kumar, the top government official for Nagapattinam district in Tamil Nadu state, where the incident occurred.
He said emergency workers had managed to rescue three of the workers from under tons of debris, who were being treated for their injuries at a government-run hospital.
The state government has also offered $2,300 in compensation to the victims’ families.
Building disasters are common in Indian cities where millions are forced to live in cramped, run-down properties due to spiralling real estate prices and a lack of housing, while activists say owners often cut corners on construction to save costs.
At least six people were killed on Monday when an apartment block collapsed in Bangalore city after a gas tank explosion, and more than 30 perished in September when a 117-year-old apartment building collapsed in Mumbai.—AFP