Mumbai: Hawkers crawl back into Kurla wall collapse site

Sep 13, 2018, 09:03 IST | Rajendra B. Aklekar

All of the hawkers are sitting within 150 metres of the railway station, despite a 2017 Bombay High Court ban on the same. The Central Railway (CR) has alerted the BMC about their presence

Mumbai: Hawkers crawl back into Kurla wall collapse site
Bombay High Court. File pic

Close to a week after the September 7 Kurla wall collapse that injured four people, the notorious hawkers who played a part in causing it are back. mid-day observed this on a visit to the site of the incident outside the railway station on Thursday. All of the hawkers are sitting within 150 metres of the railway station, despite a 2017 Bombay High Court ban on the same. The Central Railway (CR) has alerted the BMC about their presence.

Local MLA Mangesh Kudalkar said, "The wall was leaning. I'd alerted the railways in June 2017 and done regular follow-ups, but the issue kept moving from one department to another. And then, this happened," he said. CR had held the hawkers partly responsible for the collapse, saying they'd drilled holes into the structure, thus weakening it. In addition to them, two old trees, whose roots got entangled in the concrete wall had also weakened it.

Railway officials said preliminary inquiry into the collapse had revealed that the wall had been damaged. "This wall is made of brick masonry. Hawkers used the outer face of this wall for hanging their goods on thick nails and hooks and weakened it. Moreover, there are two old peepal trees near this boundary wall. Some roots of these trees also entered this wall, which may have weakened it further. We've already begun work on building a new wall and have also spoken to BMC about the hawkers' issue," said a railway official. mid-day reached out to the civic body, but they remained unavailable.

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