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Friday 24 January 2020

Wall collapse: 2 builders sent to police custody till 2 July

Vipul Agarwal and Vivek Agarwal, the developers and partners in Alcon Landmarks, were arrested on Saturday after a portion of a 22-ft-high compound wall of a housing society collapsed on adjoining shanties of construction workers following incessant rainfall

Pune: A Maharashtra court on Sunday remanded two builders, arrested in connection with the wall collapse in Kondhwa area of Pune where 15 labourers were killed, in police custody till 2 July.

Vipul Agarwal and Vivek Agarwal, the developers and partners in Alcon Landmarks, were arrested on Saturday after a portion of a 22-ft-high compound wall of a housing society collapsed on adjoining shanties of construction workers following incessant rainfall.

They were produced before Judicial Magistrate (First Class) S S Ramdin who remanded them in police custody till Tuesday.

At least 15 people, including four children, were killed and two others injured here Saturday when a portion of a 22-ft high compound wall of a housing society collapsed on adjoining shanties following incessant rains, trapping the sleeping families under the debris, officials said.

The incident took place between 1:30 AM and 1:45 AM at Kondhwa and the victims were labourers and their family members, a majority of them from Bihar, who were living in makeshift shelters at the under-construction residential project where deep excavation work was underway.

Police registered a case of culpable homicide against the developers of two construction firms Alcon Landmarks and Kanchan Royal Exotica and arrested Agarwals on Saturday evening.

The prosecution told the court that the police custody of the accused was required to investigate the case, as residents of the housing society had raised the issue of the compound wall’s condition with the builders from time-to-time but no action was taken by them.

The police also told the court they need to seize some documents and maps of the Alcon Stylus building and investigate to whom the developers had given the contract to construct the wall.

However, defence lawyer Sanjay Agarwal opposed the demand for police custody, saying it cannot be a case of culpable homicide.

“It is a case of death caused by negligence under Indian Penal Code Section 304-A,” he said.

The police have booked the accused under IPC Sections 304 (culpable homicide not amounting to murder) and 34 (common intention).

After hearing both the sides, the judge remanded both the accused in police custody till 2 July.

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