Bellary, Jan 28: The toll in the five-storeyed building crash in Bellary has risen to 14 and the figure could go up to 20 as several persons are still trapped 48 hours after the building under construction gave way.
Nineteen persons, rescued by teams of National Disaster Response Force (NDRF), Pune, and Madras Engineering Group of the Army, were undergoing treatment at a hospital here and their condition was stated to be "out of danger", official sources said.
Among the rescued were Lakshmi and her five year old kid who were pulled out from the debris on Thursday.
"My child was going on asking are we going to die. I never thought we will come out alive," said Lakshmi who has been admitted to a hospital for recuperation. Her husband’s fate is not known. " I dont know if he is alive" she said.
Lakshmi said all of them were having dinner when the building crashed suddenly. " We could not move, there were huge boulders around us," she said.
Not so lucky like Lakshmi, 22-year-old Mohammed Ali could not be saved despite hectic efforts by the rescue teams.
Doctors battled for two hours, amputating his hand and a leg, which were trapped under cement blocks, but could not save him.
He died due to shock and excessive bleeding.
Most of the victims were labourers from Karnataka, Andhra Pradesh and Bihar.
Two of the dead have been identified as students who lived in an adjacent hostel on which the building collapsed.
Chief Minister B S Yeddyurappa visited the mishap site and also the hospital to inquire about the health of the injured. He announced an ex-gratia of Rs 25,000 to each of the injured.
Yeddyurappa told reporters that stern action would be taken against officials who allowed construction of the building up to to five floors though sanction had been secured only for two floors.