Death toll in Pakistan building collapse rises to 18
Karachi: The death toll from a building collapse in a congested residential area of Karachi on Friday rose to 18, mostly women and children, as rescuers pulled out more bodies from the rubble. A top government official said the casualties were high as residents had illegally built the three-storey building on a 80 square yard plot in a congested lane of the city’s Gulbahar area.
The third floor portion collapsed and it brought down the entire building. Rescue work is still continuing at the site and it has been a difficult and slow process as the lane where the incident occurred is narrow and we have been unable to get ambulances and other heavy machinery through it, he said.
The official said most of the rescue work is being carried out with shovels and that is why it is taking time to clear the rubble.
Two more bodies were found this morning, he said.
The Assistant Police Surgeon at Abbasi Shaheed Hospital Muhammad Saleem confirmed that the death toll from the building collapse has increased to 18. The deceased included 11 women, two men and the five children.
Saleem said so far around 20 people rescued from the rubbles had been brought to the hospital and were being treated for injuries. Karachi Mayor Wasim Akhtar said that initial inquiry had shown that the third floor was constructed illegally as the building was old and was built on limited space.
Action will be taken against all those involved in allowing these illegal constructions or turning a blind eye to them as they have endangered lives of people. In many old areas of Karachi, authorities have declared several buildings unfit for habitation but due to red-tapism and corruption in government departments, no orders are executed properly.
Karachi is Pakistan’s biggest city and home to millions of people who have migrated from other parts of the country and even from abroad to this metropolitan city.
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