Death toll in Himachal building collapse climbs to 14

Shimla: Six more bodies were retrieved on Monday from the debris of a building collapse in Himachal Pradesh’ Solan district, taking the death toll to 14, officials said.
Twenty-eight people, including 17 Army personnel and 11 civilians, were injured after the four-storey building, which housed a restaurant, collapsed on the Nahan-Kumarhatti Road on Sunday evening following heavy rains, they said. The bodies of 13 Army personnel and a civilian were extricated from the debris, the officials said.
“The operation is still underway to find out if any other person is still trapped under the rubble,” Deputy Commissioner K C Chaman said. Chief Minister Jai Ram
Thakur, who visited the spot on Monday said initial investigation has found that the structure was not built up to specifications. “A magisterial inquiry has already been ordered. Strict legal action will be taken against erring persons after getting the report,” he said. An FIR was registered against the owner of the building, he added.
“There are more such buildings in the state. Owners have constructed them without following building by-laws. Whatever is required to be done, will be done to check it,” he said.
The chief minister said, “Necessary equipment was airlifted on Sunday evening itself through a helicopter from Shimla’s Sunni to carry out the rescue work by the NDRF.” An injured soldier told reporters that when the building collapsed, there were 35 Army personnel inside it, of whom 30 were Junior Commissioned Officers (JCOs). (PTI)

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