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  Metros   Mumbai  25 Nov 2017  Vegetable vendor saved the day

Vegetable vendor saved the day

THE ASIAN AGE. | AISHWARYA IYER
Published : Nov 25, 2017, 2:34 am IST
Updated : Nov 25, 2017, 2:34 am IST

The unidentified woman’s cries alerted residents, averted even bigger tragedy.

The building started to collapse around 8.30 am. (Photo: Debasish Dey)
 The building started to collapse around 8.30 am. (Photo: Debasish Dey)

Mumbai: If not for the timely actions of an alert female vegetable vendor, the Bhiwandi building collapse — which left three dead and nine injured on Friday — would have taken an even more tragic turn.

The woman, who happened to be passing by the area around 8.30 am, heard a rumbling sound coming from the four-storey building, which was seconds away from collapsing. She immediately screamed out a warning to alert the people inside the building. Thanks to her presence of mind, the residents of neighbouring buildings were made aware of the situation immediately .

“We came out on hearing the bhaji wali’s (vegetable vendor) cries. We did not understand what was happening, but then we saw the building crumbling away. That woman was trying to tell the people and children to escape,” said a resident of a neighbouring building.

The neighbours then started attempting to pull out people to stuck people after informing the police and the disaster cell.

When asked where the woman was now, another resident said, “We forgot all about her during the rescue process. She slipped away so we could not even thank her. But we will always be thankful for her deed.”

Residents also expressed gratitude towards the police, who had initiated the rescue operation without any safety gear or machines. “They handled the debris with their bare hands. Most of those trapped, who were panicking and suffered minor injuries, were removed by them,” a local said.

Luck by chance

  • The two families who were staying at the first floor of the collapsed building had left for their native place on Thursday night.
  • Another resident, Shakeel Ansari (37), on Thursday night decided to sleep on the building terrace instead of his house. During the collapse, he directly landed on the ground and escaped, sustaining only slight injuries.
  • As it was a Friday, a majority of the children in the building had left for school in the morning.

Tags: bhiwandi building collapse, rescue operation