The railing on the second floor corridor of a Matunga building gave way earlier this week, sending a 44-year-old man plunging to a brutal death. Hitendra Soni fell directly on an iron rod, which pierced right through his body.
The dilapidated building, Balkrishna Niwas in Matunga (East)
Hitendra lived in Balkrishna Niwas, Matunga (East), with his 80-year-old mother, Taraben, and unmarried sister Anilaben (52), and he was the sole breadwinner of the family. The incident took place on Sunday morning.
“Hitendra woke up at 6.45 am and went to the bathroom outside. I heard a thud and went out to see my brother hanging, holding an iron rod. I told him to leave the rod and get down. When he did not respond, I went to the ground floor and only then did I realise that the rod had gone through his body.
A portion of the railing gave way, sending Hitendra Soni (inset) plunging to his death. Pics/Shadab Khan
There was blood all over,” said Anilaben. Hitendra was rushed to Sion Hospital, where he was declared dead on arrival. Hitendra worked at Samrat Pharmaceuticals Private Limited in Goregaon and earned Rs 15,000 a month.
'Landlord to blame'
According to residents, the building is 86 years old and it had not been repaired since 30 years. They said the incident had occurred because the building was dilapidated and blamed the landlord, who, they claimed had been neglecting repairs.”
Himmatlal Soni, the landlord of the building, who also stays on its top floor, said, “This was nothing but an accident. Hitendra might have pushed against the railing, causing it to give way. It could also be a suicide. As far as repairing is concerned, it should be done by MHADA as the building is a cessed building and I regularly pay the tax. I also wrote a letter to the BMC in May, but no action has been taken yet.”
The Matunga police have registered an accidental death case, but officials said they are probing all angles. Meanwhile, a local club has come forward to help the family. “Matunga Youngsters Club will help the family by giving them R10,000 per month,” said Vinay Gathani, the club’s president.