Vadodara, Gujarat: At least 11 people were killed when two three-storey buildings built 11 years back collapsed in Madhavnagar locality of Atladara area here in the wee hours today and about 40 people were feared to be stuck under the debris.
The rescue operations are on war footing by the local administration with the help of teams of Army and NDRF, to extricate the trapped people.
"11 people have died in the incident, while eight have been rescued. Still, around 35-40 people are believed to be trapped under the debris," district officials said.
Superintendent of state government-run Sir Sayajirao General (SSG) Hospital Dr Deveshwar Pandey told PTI that three women, a six-month old male infant and a 13-year-old boy were among those killed.
The twin multi-storey buildings, which collapsed at around 4.30 AM, caught the sleeping occupants unawares, H J Tapariya, chief fire brigade officer of the Vadodara Municipal Corporation (VMC), said.
VMC commissioner Manish Bhardwaj, city police commissioner Satish Sharma and Mayor Bharat Shah and other senior officials were overseeing the rescue work.
The locals alleged that the buildings collapsed owing to sub-standard material used in the construction.
Atladara is a newly developed locality after merger of Atladara village with Vadodara city. The buildings were constructed by the Vadadora Urban Development Authority (VUDA) in 2002, officials said.
Meanwhile, the Narendra Modi government ordered a high level inquiry into the twin-building collapse.
"Gujarat Chief Minister Narendra Modi ordered formation of a high level inquiry commission headed by retired chief secretary Manjula Subramaniam, to inquire the devastating twin building collapse in Vadodara," a state government official said.
Modi also announced Rs 2 lakh compensation to the kin of those who have died in the mishap.
Incidentally, locals living there said that the buildings were inaugurated by Modi ten years ago.
City Congress unit president Narendra Ravat alleged that poor quality of raw material "sugol" (a material in place of cement) was the cause of the collapse which has been proved with recovery of sugol samples from the debris.
The deceased who have been identified are Lakshmi Bahadur Nepali (35), Sita Naresh Padhiyar (30), Komal Suresh Nepali, (30), Dhiraj Suresh Nepali (six months), Vignesh Mahadev Nayar (13), Mahadev Nayar (40), Naresh Himant Padhiyar (30), Karan Bahadur Nepali (45) and Ramchandra Mishra (40).