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Dharwad building collapse: Death toll rises to 14, rescue operation continues

Dharwad building collapse Photograph:( ANI )

WION Web Team New Delhi, Delhi, India Mar 22, 2019, 08.08 AM (IST)

The death toll in the Dharwad building collapse in Karnataka rose to fourteen on Friday. Assistant Commissioner, Dharwad sub-division told reporters that as many as 56 people have been rescued while 12 are still missing. 

"More than 400 staff comprising NDRF, SDRF, Police and Revenue Department are involved in the rescue operation," he noted. 

"A total of 14 people have died. Yesterday, we rescued two people. Three more people are trapped in the debris. We have given oxygen and ORS to them. SDRF and NDRF teams are conducting a rescue operation," Deepa Cholan, Deputy Commissioner said on Friday.

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Police also arrested the building's design engineer Vivek Pawar while four other accused are at large including the relative of former Karnataka minister Vinay Kulkarni, police sources said.

On the third day of the rescue operation, bodies of five people, including that of eight-year-old Divya Unakal, Dakshayini (45) and Sangamesh (42), were retrieved from the rubble, police said.

Meanwhile, Karnataka chief minister has announced that the district administration has already announced a magistrate inquiry into the mishap, adding that the "government is ready to appoint a retired High Court judge if required. It's suspected that more than 10 workers are still trapped under debris". 

Kumaraswamy said he cannot announce any compensation since the model code of conduct for Lok Sabha polls was in place but he has entrusted the chief secretary to announce adequate compensation to the next to the kin of the deceased and injured. 

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The Chief Minister said that the rescue efforts will be conducted on a war footing and urged locals not to panic.

An under-construction building collapsed in Karnataka's Dharwad on Tuesday evening. The collapse took place in Kumareshwar Nagar. 

(With inputs from agencies)