Rain leaves gaping holes in Ghaziabad

Rain leaves gaping holes in Ghaziabad
Rain leaves gaping holes in Ghaziabad
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GHAZIABAD: Rain leaves gaping holes in Ghaziabad  – As many as 96 flats in two housing societies in Vasundhara were evacuated on Thursday after a major cave-in washed away a portion of a road and left a 30 feet deep by 20 feet wide crater.

Residents panicked after the cave-in extended right up to the boundary walls of Vartalok and Pragya Kunj housing societies

Raj Kumar Tiwari, who lives on the ground floor of Vartalok society, said, “The cave-in happened a few metres away from my flat. The sight was frightening — I could see water gushing into the crater that had been created and I started shouting.

 Recalling the sequence of events, Tiwari said, “At 8.30am, I was getting ready for office when I heard a thundering sound. I rushed out and saw the boundary wall of my society suspended as the ground below disappeared… Beyond the boundary wall, where once a road had been, there was nothing.”

Another resident Vikas Tomar, who lives on the ground floor of the same society, said, “I ran to the terrace to get a clear view and what I saw sent shudders down my spine. There was no road and in its place, was a massive opening… I quickly ran down and started shouting ‘get out of the house’ and my family and others soon joined me.”

Residents crowded outside their buildings and stood guard, warning others to not get close to the cave-in site.

Soon afterwards, officials with the district administration cordoned off all roads leading to the cave-in site and advised residents to not go inside their flats. Police vans were stationed at all entry points.

Himsanshu Gautam, ADM (city), said, “As a precautionary measure, we evacuated two blocks, including 32 flats in Pragya Kunj society and four blocks which comprise 64 flats in Vartalok society. A team of CRRI (Central Road Research Institute) has been asked to carry out a safety audit of the buildings after which residents will be allowed to go inside their flats.”

Residents have been forced out in the open with their families, including children. Some of them have sought refuge in neighbours’ houses but others have packed their cars with their belongings and left for relatives’ houses.

Lal Chand, who lives on the fourth floor of the society, said, “The area was cordoned off and we are not being allowed to go inside our flats. We have no idea where we will spend the night. I am planning to move to my relative’s house in Delhi.”

Roop Kishore, a resident of the neighbouring Pragya Kunj society, said, “There are close to 120 anxious residents loitering around the society.”

On the reason behind the cave-in, Gautam said that some residents had dug up a 4000 square metre vacant plot, creating a 30 feet deep pit, to channelise rain water.

Earthing pillars should have been constructed around the plot to arrest the loose soil from sliding into the pit but the pillars were absent which led to the cave-in,” he said, adding that the area was under the supervision of UP Housing Board and the administration would be issuing a notice to the board shortly.

Superintending engineer of UP Housing Board KA Singhal said, “The land in question is currently under litigation and belongs to a builder. He should have taken care to fill the vacant plot which was dug up.”

Credit: TOI

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