10 years on, Mumbra building crash victims await justice | Thane News

10 years on, Mumbra building crash victims await justice | Thane News

THANE: A decade after Adarsh Tower inside Lucky Compound in Shil-Daighar near Mumbra crashed like a pack of cards, claiming 74 lives and maiming 62 others on April 4, 2013, trial in the unauthorised construction is moving at a snail’s pace with only 56 of the over 400 witnesses being examined so far. For those who survived, getting justice seems to be taking longer than expected.
The prosecution, meanwhile, has claimed that it is facing difficulties in arranging for deposition due to various factors.
Special prosecutor Shishir Hiray said they have demanded a dedicated court to expedite trial but to no avail as neither the government nor the police department has shown any interest. Hiray also expressed displeasure over the remuneration he is getting as a special prosecutor.
In June 2015, while disposing of bail applications, the Bombay high court had given a specific order to the Thane court to expedite the case, setting a time frame of 18 months. That deadline, however, wasn’t met and the case continued to move at a slow pace due to the delaying tactics adopted by the accused, said a source, adding that no lesson has been learnt from the incident as illegal constructions continue to mushroom in and around Kalwa, Mumbra, Diva and Thane region.
The building collpase and subsequent investigation also unearthed the nexus between politicians and unscrupulous builders undertaking illegal constructions. Among the 27 accused arrested and being tried for the illegal construction of the building on a forest property are top bureaucrats of the Thane Municipal Corporation (TMC), TMC engineers, an NCP corporator, policemen, agents, architects, contractors and fly-by-night builders.
The building, in fact, collapsed when construction of the eight floor was underway and some of its floors were occupied by site construction workers and families to avoid demolition by civic authorities. The building did not even have an occupancy certificate. The prosecution filed a more than 15,000-page chargesheet in the case. Sources said the next date of hearing is coincidentally April 04, the day when the building crashed 10 years ago.
A survivor who did not wish to be named said they may not get justice in the near future given the pace of the ongoing trial.

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