Collapse of Wada triggers dispute over maintenance

Nobody was injured in the incident, but it ensued a heated argument between some 25 tenants and the wada owner over negligence and maintenance of the building

A PortionĀ of an old wada in Narayan Peth came crumbling down on Tuesday night, highlighting the urgency to repair the derelict structures in the city. Although no one was inured in the accident, fire officials said that an argument ensued between the tenants and wada owner Madhav Anata Supekar (70), who was being blamed for being negligent towards maintenance of the building. However, both parties were shirking responsibilities, the fire officials said.

Down it came: The front portion of the balcony that caved in after the
beams supporting it gave away. Pic/Ishan Ghosh

The front portion of the balcony of the Supekar Wada caved in after the beams supporting it gave away. Fire officials said that no portion of the bedroom or living room was affected. "No one was at the balcony when the structure collapsed and thus there were no casualties. However, the damage has been quite extensive", said fireman Kamlesh Chaudhary.

Reportedly, once the debris was cleared, 25 odd residents ganged up against the owner, Supekar, alleging that he had ignored the maintenance despite repeated pleas. A tenant requesting anonymity, said that they have been requesting Supekar to carry out repairs for the last few years.

"This is nothing but the result of his negligence. Even we were ready to contribute to the expenses," he said. Another resident said that he fears last minute eviction if Supekar sells the space for redevelopment. Citing ill health and inability to look after the wada's maintenance, Supekar said, "I have two brothers who have settled abroad and I can't manage all these things on my own."

According to fire brigade officials, the incident took place around 11:30 pm and the call was directed to the officials of Kasba Fire Brigade Station who reached the spot within twenty minutes.

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