Eighteen people were killed and several are feared trapped when a part of an under-construction flyover collapsed in Varanasi city of northern Indian state of Uttar Pradesh yesterday.
National Disaster Management Force Inspector Neeraj Kumar told reporters that 18 bodies have so far been pulled from under the rubbles of the collapsed portion of the flyover and three persons were rescued, reports our New Delhi correspondent.
Two pillars of the flyover near Varanasi cantonment railway station came crashing down bringing large slabs of concrete down, falling on half a dozen vehicles and a local bus under it, Uttar Pradesh’s Principal Secretary (Home) Arvind Kumar said.
He said the portion of the flyover that caved in was built in February.
Many of those trapped under the debris were reported to be labourers who were working on the flyover, reports our New Delhi correspondent.
Five teams of the National Disaster Response Force or NDRF have been deployed to lead the rescue operations. Eight cranes are being used to try to remove the debris, officials said adding gas cutters are being used and the first priority is to pull out those trapped.
Prime Minister Narendra Modi, whose parliamentary constituency is Varanasi, tweeted that he has spoken to officials and asked them to ensure all possible support to those affected.
"I spoke to UP CM Yogi Adityanath Ji regarding the situation due to the collapse of an under-construction flyover in Varanasi. The UP government is monitoring the situation very closely and is working on the ground to assist the affected," he said.