Community Hall harbouring fire victims collapses in north Kashmir

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Members of at least three households had a miraculous escape as a Village Community Hall harbouring them collapsed on Saturday evening in Tekipora, Lolab area of the frontier district, Kupwara.

Eyewitnesses told a local news agency, Global News Service (GNS) that the peripheral walls of the Community Hall sheltering at least three fire-victim households collapsed this evening.

“Three families whose houses were razed down in fire incident in the month of March had been taking refuge in the building”, they said adding “due to [families] being poor the essential requirements and rehabilitation in the building was facilitated by SDM concerned.”

The locals of the area, however, alleged that “the building has collapsed due to use of sub-standard construction material.” “We demand a time-bound enquiry as what led to collapse of the building and all such people involved in its construction be held accountable for the mishap,” a local said.

The locals have meanwhile also demanded for the shifting of the fire victims from the building to some other safer place as to avert any tragedy.

When contacted SDM Lolab Aijaz Ahmad told GNS that “an enquiry has been ordered as what led to the collapse of the building”, adding “the issue to rehabilitate the victims will be taken with district administration on a priority basis.” (GNS)

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