By ZeroHour News
Hyderabad, July 8 Thirteen people were killed and 19 injured Monday
when a hotel known for Iranian tea and snacks collapsed in Secunderabad, the twint city of Hyderabad, police said.
The two-storey City Light Hotel on Rashtrapati Road came crashing around 6.30 a.m.
Police, fire fighters and rescuers evacuated 25 people from the rubble and shifted 19 of them to the government-run Gandhi Hospital. The condition of some of the injured was stated to be critical.
The dead included daily wage workers who were sipping tea. Four employees of the hotel as well as the owner’s son were among the dead.
Owner Hussain Bolloki was battling for life while his son Mustafa Bolloki died in the disaster.
They belong to a family of Iranian descent. The tragedy sent shock waves
among owners of Iranian hotels in Hyderabad and Secunderabad.
The nearly six-decade-old City Light Hotel was a popular landmark in
Secunderabad. Located on the busy Rashtrapati Road, it was famous for its
Iranian tea, snacks, biryani and other lip-smacking dishes.
Officials said if the building had collapsed a couple of hours later, the
death toll could have been much higher. There were few customers at the
time of the crash. Even the road was almost deserted.
The Andhra Pradesh government announced a probe into the incident. The
police booked the hotel owner for causing death by negligence.
The authorities declared an ex-gratia of Rs.7.5 lakh each to the kin of those killed.
Greater Hyderabad Municipal Corporation (GHMC) commissioner T. Krishna
Babu told reporters that though only the families of workers were entitled
for the compensation under the labour law, the government had decided to
extend this ex-gratia to kin of all victims.
Teams of GHMC, fire fighters, Central Industrial Security Force (CISF) and Hyderabad Metro Rail cleared the debris.
Locals alleged that the negligence by the municipal authorities led to the
Krishna Babu said it was not a dilapidated structure and was also not among 57 buildings in Secunderabad which were issued demolition notices.
“The buildings looked stable. The construction of a ‘bhatti’ for haleem
(beef stew) on top of the building may have weakened the structure but the
exact reason will be known only after a probe,” he said.
The hotel owner was reportedly building the ‘bhatti’ or kiln for cooking
haleem, a popular dish during the Muslim holy month of Ramadan.
After visiting the site, Chief Minister N. Kiran Kumar Reddy held a
meeting with top officials and directed them to take steps to identify and
demolish all dilapidated buildings in the city.
The municipal commissioner said the GHMC would launch a special drive from
Tuesday to inspect 50-year-old commercial buildings and would identify
dilapidated structures for demolition.
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