Mumbai: Metro III work leaves 80-year-old Mahim building wobbly

Updated: Apr 19, 2019, 08:17 IST | Chetna Yerunkar | Mumbai

Residents of 80-year-old building say cement roof collapse on Wednesday night was due to vibrations, MMRCL officials unresponsive

The parapet from the top floor fell off as residents blamed underground Metro III work for it
The parapet from the top floor fell off as residents blamed underground Metro III work for it

After south Mumbai, residents of a building in Mahim have now blamed MMRC officials for Metro III work endangering their building. Residents of Rahat Manzil in Mahim are living in a constant state of fear after one of their window parapet collapsed on Wednesday around 9.30 pm. The ongoing underground Metro work in front of their building was blamed for the incident.

On August 25, 2017, a limestone finial, an ornamental piece on the JN Petit Institute and Library, a heritage structure in south Mumbai, had fallen off the building from a height of 10 metres, creating panic among citizens living in nearby buildings.

Zeebah Yazdi points to the debris in her balcony. Pics/Bipin Kokate
Zeebah Yazdi points to the debris in her balcony. Pics/Bipin Kokate

Locals said they have been concerned for the last two years as the Metro workers kept digging deeper, causing tremors and vibrations in the area. Metro III connects Colaba in south Mumbai to SEEPZ in Andheri.

Also Read: Human chain formed to protest tree-cutting for Mumbai Metro

A cessed structure (paying repair fund), the 80-year-old building falls under the Repair and Rehabilitation Board of MHADA. When the window eaves collapsed on Wednesday, its debris fell into the balcony of the third floor residents, causing panic among occupants. All of them immediately rushed down.

Window eaves from the building's top floor fell off as residents blamed underground Metro III work being undertaken without precautions for it
Window eaves from the building's top floor fell off as residents blamed underground Metro III work being undertaken without precautions for it

'No precautions taken'

Residents complained that the building has been shaking ever since the Metro work began and cracks were noticed in their homes. They also alleged that no precautionary measures were put in place by authorities before beginning work.

MMRC engineers and contractors were, however, seen at the site clearing debris and removing the hanging concrete and grills affected when the slab came crashing down. MMRC officials said that a structural audit of the building has been done and the vibration levels are monitored every time work is undertaken in front of the building.

Metro officials cleaning the debris that the collapse had left in a balcony
Metro officials cleaning the debris that the collapse had left in a balcony

Zeebah Yazdi, a third-floor resident of the building, said, "We are tired of complaining but the Metro authorities are paying no heed to our worries. Just before the chajja came down on Wednesday, my daughter was playing downstairs and my father was about to step out in the balcony. Luckily, I asked her to come home and my father was still at the door when the slab came down. We rushed downstairs fearing the building might collapse. We have told MMRC and MHADA to carry out repairs, but nobody seems to care."

Also Read: Mumbai: Locals refuse to accept MMRC's 'seasonal changes' claim, seek probe

Metro officials cleaning the debris that the collapse had left in a balcony

"It is dangerous to reside in this building now with this constant fear of collapse. We had also got some plastering work done inside our house which too has come off due to the vibrations. We are tired of complaining," said Yazdi's next-door neighbour Parvez Qureshi.

Zeebah Yazdi says her child and parents are now scared of living in the building
Zeebah Yazdi says her child and parents are now scared of living in the building

The building also houses some shops and restaurants on its ground floor. Shoeb Mohammad Hanif, owner of the Taaza Foods restaurant, said that the Metro authorities had promised to repair the portions that are affected and get the building's plaster in order. "Luckily there were no injuries when the debris fell with a loud thud directly on my restaurant," he added.

Also Read: Mumbai: Skywalks located on SV road across three suburbs to make way for metro 2

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