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Maharashtra

16 dead, 15 injured, several trapped as five-storeyed building collapses in Mumbai

At least 16 people died and 15 others suffered injuries when an old, dilapidated five-storeyed building collapsed in the Bhendi Bazaar area, near J J Junction, in south Mumbai here this morning, official sources said.

 
16 dead, 15 injured in Mumbai building collapse
At least 16 people died and 15 others suffered injuries when an old, dilapidated five-storeyed building collapsed in the Bhendi Bazaar area, near J J Junction, in south Mumbai here this morning, official sources said.
 
Municipal Corporation of Greater Mumbai Assistant Commissioner J S Ghegadmal told NetIndian over the telephone from the scene that 31 victims had been extricated from the debris, of whom 16 were found dead.
 
The injured were rushed to the nearby J. J. Hospital, where the condition of some of them was stated to be serious, sources said.
 
With several more people feared trapped under the tonnes of debris, scores of men from the Mumbai Fire Brigade, the Municipal Corporation, the National Disaster Response Force (NDRF) and local residents were engaged in massive search and rescue efforts.
 
Cranes, gas cutters and other equipment were being used to clear the debris and cut through the mangled steel and concrete to reach the victims and look for possible survivors.
 
The structure was more than a hundred years old, sources said. It was locted in a heavily congested area in south Mumbai's C Ward, and rescue teams with their big vehicles and heavy equipment had a tough time reaching the spot.
 
The building had a playschool on the premises which would have opened at 10 am as usual. However, the building came down at about 8.30 am, much before the children were scheduled to arrive.
 
This is the third major incident of building collapse in the metropolis in recent weeks. On July 25, at least 17 people died and 11 others suffered injuries when a four-storeyed residential building collapsed in the suburban area of Ghatkopar.
 
On August 26, six people lost their lives when a part of a seven-storeyed under-construction building collapsed at Chandivali while some unauthorised portions of the structure were being demolished.
 
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Municipal officials said they received a call about the collapse of the building around 8.40 am and the fire brigade was immediately rushed to the spot. There was no immediate word on the number of people living in the building and how many of them were trapped under the debris. Police have cordoned off the area to facilitate the smooth conduct of the search and rescue operations.
 
The incident has come two days after Mumbai experienced its heaviest rainfall since the July 2005 floods.
 
Maharashtra Chief Minister Devendra Fadnavis expressed grief over the loss of lives in the incient and is personally monitoring the situation.
 
He has ordered a detailed inquiry into the incident by a committee headed by the Additional Chief Secretary (Housing).
 
Mr. Fadnavis has asked the Municipal Commissioner to submit a detailed report on the tragedy. He also asked the Municipal Commissioner to focus on ensuring immediate medical assistance to the injured persons. State Minister Subhash Desai visited the spot and later briefed Mr. Fadnavis about the situation.
 
Civic officials said the building had been declared unsafe for living six years ago. The residents had been served with evacuation notices in 2011 and ordered to vacate the building to enable redevelopment of the area under the Saifee Burhani Upliftment Trust (SBUT) project.
 
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16 dead, 14 injured in major fire at ammunition depot in Maharashtra

At least 22 defence personnel died and 14 others suffered injuries in a major fire that broke out in the early hours of Tuesday and triggered huge explosions at one of India's biggest ammunition depots at Pulgoan in Wardha district of Maharashtra.

 
16 dead, 14 injured in ammunition depot fire in Wardha
At least 16 people died and 14 others suffered injuries in a major fire that broke out in the early hours of today and triggered huge explosions at one of India's biggest ammunition depots at Pulgoan in Wardha district of Maharashtra.
 
Wardha district officials said the injured had been admitted to hospitals in Wardha town, about 30 km from Pulgaon, for treatment, official sources said.
 
The massive fire and the explosions that followed lit up the night sky in the town, located about 100 km from Nagpur.
 
The fire broke out in the Central Ammunition Depot around 1.30 am today and was brought under control by around 6 am today, they said.
 
The cause of the fire could not be immediately ascertained and would be established only after an inquiry, they said.
 
The sources said families living in accommodation near the depot were evacuated to safer places as a precautionary measure.
 
Fire brigade personnel worked throughout the night to bring the blaze under control.
 
Prime Minister Narendra Modi expressed grief over the loss of lives in the fire.
 
“Pained by loss of lives caused by a fire at central ammunition depot in Pulgaon, Maharashtra. My thoughts are with the bereaved families," he said on micro-blogging site Twitter
 
"I pray that those who are injured recover quickly," he said, adding that he had asked Defence Minister Manohar Parrikar to rush to the spot and take stock of the situation. 
 
Chief of Army Staff Gen Dalbir Singh is also rushing to Wardha for an assessment of the situation, the sources added.
 
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CCEA nod for doubling of Daund-Manmad railway line in Maharashtra

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The Cabinet Committee on Economic Affairs (CCEA) yesterday gave its approval for the doubling of the 247.5 km Daund-Manmad railway line in Maharashtra.
 
An official press release said the estimated cost of the project will be Rs. 2,081.27 crore and the completion cost  Rs. 2,330.51 crore with 5% escalation per annum. The project is likely to be completed by 2021-22.
 
The project is expected to ease passenger and freight traffic and decongest the Daund-Manmad route, which is a critical section for trains from North India to South India via Pune and for pilgrims going to the famous pilgrimage destinations of Shirdi and Shani-Shignapur, an official press release said.
 
It will also ease the congestion in Mumbai by diverting the trains to this route, the release said.
 
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Six wagons of goods train derail on Kalyana-Lonavala section in Maharashtra

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Six wagons of a goods train derailed between Monkey Hill and Khandala on the Kalyan-Lonavala section of Central Railway this afternoon.
 
The derailment occurred on the down line on the Mumbai-Pune route at 1555 hours, infringing the middle line, the Central Railway said.
 
Breakdown train and tool vans have left for the site immediately to restore the line, it said.
 
Due to the derailment, at least ten trains have been cancelled, five were short-terminated and eight were diverted, it added.
 
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21 dead, 13 injured, several trapped as five-storeyed building collapses in Mumbai

At least 21 people died and 13 others suffered injuries when an old, dilapidated five-storeyed building collapsed in the Bhendi Bazaar area, near J J Junction, in south Mumbai on Thursday morning, official sources said.

 
16 dead, 15 injured in Mumbai building collapse
At least 21 people died and 13 others suffered injuries when an old, dilapidated five-storeyed building collapsed in the Bhendi Bazaar area, near J J Junction, in south Mumbai here this morning, official sources said.
 
Municipal Corporation of Greater Mumbai Assistant Commissioner J S Ghegadmal told NetIndian over the telephone from the scene that 34 victims had been extricated from the debris, of whom 21 were found dead.
 
The injured were rushed to the nearby J. J. Hospital, where the condition of some of them was stated to be serious, sources said.
 
With several more people feared trapped under the tonnes of debris, scores of men from the Mumbai Fire Brigade, the Municipal Corporation, the National Disaster Response Force (NDRF) and local residents were engaged in massive search and rescue efforts.
 
Cranes, gas cutters and other equipment were being used to clear the debris and cut through the mangled steel and concrete to reach the victims and look for possible survivors.
 
The structure was about 125 years old, sources said. It was located in a heavily congested area in south Mumbai's C Ward, and rescue teams with their big vehicles and heavy equipment had a tough time reaching the spot.
 
The building had a playschool on the premises which would have opened at 10 am as usual. However, the building came down at about 8.30 am, much before the children were scheduled to arrive.
 
This is the third major incident of building collapse in the metropolis in recent weeks. On July 25, at least 17 people died and 11 others suffered injuries when a four-storeyed residential building collapsed in the suburban area of Ghatkopar.
 
On August 26, six people lost their lives when a part of a seven-storeyed under-construction building collapsed at Chandivali while some unauthorised portions of the structure were being demolished.
 
Municipal officials said they received a call about the collapse of the building around 8.40 am and the fire brigade was immediately rushed to the spot. There was no immediate word on the number of people living in the building and how many of them were trapped under the debris. Police have cordoned off the area to facilitate the smooth conduct of the search and rescue operations.
 
The incident has come two days after Mumbai experienced its heaviest rainfall since the July 2005 floods.
 
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Maharashtra Chief Minister Devendra Fadnavis expressed grief over the loss of lives in the incident and is personally monitoring the situation. He visited the site and announced an ex-gratia payment of Rs. 5 lakh to the next-of-kin of those who had lost their lives in the collapse.
 
He also ordered a detailed inquiry into the incident by a committee headed by the Additional Chief Secretary (Housing).
 
Mr. Fadnavis has asked the Municipal Commissioner to submit a detailed report on the tragedy. He also asked the Municipal Commissioner to focus on ensuring immediate medical assistance to the injured persons. State Minister Subhash Desai visited the spot and later briefed Mr. Fadnavis about the situation.
 
In Delhi, Prime Minister Narendra Modi expressed sadness over the loss of lives in the tragedy.
 
“Collapse of a building in Mumbai is saddening. My condolences to the families of those who lost their lives and prayers with the injured," he said on Twitter.
 
Civic officials said the building had been declared unsafe for living six years ago. The residents had been served with evacuation notices in 2011 and ordered to vacate the building to enable redevelopment of the area under the Saifee Burhani Upliftment Trust (SBUT) project.
 
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Mumbai braces for another difficult day after Tuesday's downpour

People in Mumbai braced for another difficult day on Wednesday after the country's financial capital was brought down to its knees on Tuesday because of an incessant downpour which led to waterlogging in many areas and disrupted the suburban train network and road traffic.

 
Mumbai rains: Respite for commuters as train services resume
People in Mumbai and surrounding areas braced for another difficult day today after the country's financial capital was brought down to its knees yesterday because of an incessant downpour which led to waterlogging in many areas and disrupted the suburban train network, the lifeline of the city, and road traffic.
 
Thousands of people who were stranded on the streets in the heavy rains were able to reach their homes only well past midnight last night or early this morning when skeletal local train services resumed after the rain gods relented in the night.
 
Many people spent the night in their offices or took shelter at railway stations, schools and other buildings or stayed with friends and even strangers because there was simply no way of getting home. Several people spent long hours in the coaches of trains which were stranded on the waterlogged tracks, especially between Sion and Kurla, before they were rescued in the early hours of today.
 
Hundreds of people waded for several kilometres on the roads or railway tracks through knee-deep water.
 
Several people in the city posted messages on social media websites, offering food, water and even shelter for stranded people.
 
Schools and colleges, which closed early yesterday, have declared a holiday today as have some offices in view of the forecast by the India Meteorological Department (IMD) of heavy rains for the next 48 hours.
 
"In the wake of warnings issued by #IMD people in Mumbai and areas around #Mumbai are advised to stay back home unless there is an emergency," Maharashtra Chief Minister Devendra Fadnavis said on microblogging site Twitter.
 
"However, the essential services and critical staff in the Government will be on duty tomorrow," he said.
 
The IMD said intermittent rain or showers were likely in the city and its suburbs in the next 48 hours, with heavy to very heavy falls in some areas. Its Santacruz station recorded 315.8 mm of rainfall in the ten hours till 2030 hours yesterday and 88.4 mm in the 24-hour period ended 0830 hours yesterday. The IMD's Colaba station recorded 101.8 mm of rainfall in the ten hours to 2030 hours yesterday and 151.8 mm of rainfall in the 24 hours ended 0830 hours yesterday.
 
The downpour in the last two days has been the heaviest in the metropolis since the unprecedented floods of July 26, 2005.
 
There was a lot of anger among people against the Shiv Sena-led Brihanmumbai Municipal Corporation (BMC) for having allegedly failed to learn any lessons from the 2005 disaster and not taking steps to prevent the recurrence of such a crisis. BMC officials, on their part, said the city had received very heavy rainfall in the space of just a few hours and its geography, hemmed in as it is by the sea on two sides, added to the problems. They said they were doing their best to minimise the suffering of the people.
 
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For most of the day yesterday, traffic was crawling at a snail's pace on most Mumbai roads, including the Eastern and Western Express Highways. Traffic conditions improved by late in the night yesterday and that helped to clear a lot of stranded people. Traffic on the iconic Bandra-Worli Sealink, which was suspended for some hours, was restored late in the evening.
 
Helicopters of the Indian Navy, with flood rescue teams and divers, remained on standby in the city in view of the heavy rains in the city and adjoining areas.
 
Five people were reported to have died in the city and suburbs in rain-related incidents.
 
The Central Railway said suburban services on the Thane-Kalyan up and down slow lines resumed at 2230 hours yesterday. Up and down services through Sion resumed this morning, with stranded trains being cleared first before the Chhatrapati Shivaji Maharaj Terminus (CSMT)-Thane services resumed. A CSMT-Kalyan special suburban train departed at 0726 hours from CMT. The first CSMT-Panvel local on Harbour line left CSMT at 0903 hrs.
 
On the Western Railway, the first rain for Virar left Churchgate at 2358 hours. Official sources said heavy duty pumps were used to evacuate water from tracks at various places. They said efforts were made to bring the water level down to safe levels so that normal services could resume. By this morning, local trains were running on all lines on Western Railway, though there were speed restrictions at some places.
 
However, both Railways have cancelled several long distance trains to different parts of the country from Mumbai and diverted or short-terminated others in view of the situation.
 
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Modi speaks to Fadnavis on situation arising out of heavy rains in Mumbai

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Prime Minister Narendra Modi spoke to Maharashtra Chief Minister Devendra Fadnavis on the situation arising due to incessant rain in Mumbai and surrounding areas and assured him of all possible help from the Centre in coping with the crisis.
 
“Spoke to Maharashtra CM Devendra Fadnavis on the situation arising due to incessant rain in Mumbai and surrounding areas. Centre assures all possible support to the Government of Maharashtra in mitigating the situation due to heavy rains in parts of the state," Mr. Modi said on Twitter.
 
"Urge the people of Mumbai and surrounding areas to stay safe and take all essential precautions in the wake of the heavy rain," he added.
 
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Mumbai crippled as heavy rains disrupt rail, road traffic in reminder of 2005 crisis

Mumbai, India's financial capital, was crippled on Tuesday as several areas were waterlogged and thousands of people were left stranded after heavy overnight rains disrupted rail and road traffic in a grim reminder of the unprecedented July 26, 2005 crisis in the city.

 
Heavy rains cause waterlogging in Mumbai, rail, road traffic hit
Mumbai, India's financial capital, was crippled today as several areas were waterlogged and thousands of people were left stranded after heavy overnight rains disrupted rail and road traffic in a grim reminder of the unprecedented July 26, 2005 crisis in the city.
 
The heavy rains continued throughout the day today, creating traffic jams on key arterial roads, forcing closure of some sections of the suburban railway network, affecting flights to and from the city and clearly indicating that the civic authorities were ill-prepared for such a deluge.
 
As offices and educational institutions closed early, thousands of people found themselves without transport for the long journey home. While those with no alternative, braved it out by trekking on the roads in knee deep water, others took shelters at railway stations or sought help from friends or even strangers staying on the route.
 
There appeared to be no early respite with the India Meteorological Department (IMD) forecasting intermittent rain or showers during the next 48 hours in the city and its suburbs, with heavy to very heavy fall at a few places and extremely heavy rainfall at one or two places. Added to this was the high tide expected late this afternoon, which could add to the people's woes.
 
According to sources, South Mumbai recorded 152 mm of rainfall in the 24 hours ended this morning, the highest during this season so far. The Santacruz weather station recorded 88 mm of rainfall during this period.
 
Television pictures showed people wading through knee-deep water at many places and vehicles crawling on the roads and even stranded at many points.
 
The Disaster Management Unit of the Municipal Corporation of Greater Mumbai said that heavy rainfall was expected in the next 24 hours and advised people to stay indoors and not venture out unless required.
 
It said the municipal administration was fully geared up and was monitoring the situation.
 
The Mumbai Police said traffic was moving slowly at many places such as Dadar, Churchgate, Akruti Mall, Andheri, Western Express Highway, Bahar Bridge and Santacruz Airport bridge sliproad due to the rains and waterlogging.
 
It said south-bound traffic towards Matunga was being diverted to Wadala due to waterlogging on Eastern Express Highway, SG Barve Road and V N Purav Road. Waterlogging was also reported at Byculla station (E) near Palace Cinema towards Rani Baug bus stop, it said.
 
Traffic on the Bandra-Worli Sea Link towards South Mumbai has been closed for some time for clearing traffic ahead, the police said, and advised commuters to plan accordingly.
 
The Milan subway and Andheri subway were closed due to waterlogging and traffic was slow at D N Nagar and BMW Junction. It also advised people to avoid going towards Bandra Kurla Complex (BKC) and Bandra East.
 
"High tide of 3.32mts at 16:30. Avoid waterfronts, sitting on tetrapods or on promenades. Pls cooperate with policemen on duty," the police said on Twitter.
 
"Heavy waterlogging expected in the coming hrs due to heavy  showers coupled with high tide. Pls chk ur route b4 venturing out," it said.
 
"Stay indoors as far as possible.Move out only if it is very important. Due to waterlogged roads, traffic not moving and slow at most places," it said.
 
The police advised people to dial 100 if they were stuck on the road or contact it on Twitter. "We will assist you," it said.
 
"If you are still at work, don't panic and leave. A little delay & planned travel may help you better," the police added.
 
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The Central Railway said that, due to the very heavy and continuous rains, it had suspended its suburban train services on the main line between Parel and Kurla from 1230 hours and on the Harbour Line between Vadala Road and Kurla from 1220 hours.
 
The running of several long-distance trains was already affected by the derailment of the engine and nine coaches of the 12290 Nagpur-Chhatrapati Shivaji Maharaj Terminus (Mumbai) Duronto Express between Asangaon and Vasind, about 80 km from Mumbai, this morning.
 
The Western Railway said that, due to unprecedented heavy waterlogging, train services had been suspended temporarily between Elphinstone Road and Dadar on all lines from 1330 hours.
 
It said local services between Dadar and Dahanu Road were running but affected between Churchgate and Dadar due to water-logging between Elphinstone Road and Dadar.
 
Trains which were running were doing so 15-20 minutes behind schedule, sources said.
 
Teams of the  National Disaster Response (NDRF) are being sent to the affected areas to help the affected people.
 
At many places, the municipal staff had deployed pumps to pump out water from flooded areas.
 
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Several areas of Mumbai waterlogged as heavy rains lash city, disrupt rail, road traffic

 
Heavy rains cause waterlogging in Mumbai, rail, road traffic hit
Several areas of Mumbai were waterlogged and thousands of people were affected as heavy overnight rains disrupted the suburban railway system, the city's lifeline, and slowed down traffic on the roads.
 
The heavy rains continued for the fourth day today, creating traffic jams on key arterial roads and affecting flights to and from the nation's commercial capital.
 
The Central Railway said that, due to the very heavy and continuous rains, it had suspended its suburban train services on the main line between Parel and Kurla from 1230 hours and on the Harbour Line between Vadala Road and Kurla from 1220 hours.
 
The running of several long-distance trains was already affected by the derailment of the engine and nine coaches of the 12290 Nagpur-Chhatrapati Shivaji Maharaj Terminus (Mumbai) Duronto Express between Asangaon and Vasind, about 80 km from Mumbai, this morning.
 
The Western Railway said that, due to unprecedented heavy waterlogging, train services had been suspended temporarily between Elphinstone Road and Dadar on all lines from 1330 hours.
 
It said local services between Dadar and Dahanu Road were running but affected between Churchgate and Dadar due to water-logging between Elphinstone Road and Dadar.
 
Trains which were running were doing so 15-20 minutes behind schedule, sources said.
 
Teams of the  National Disaster Response (NDRF) are being sent to the affected areas to help the affected people.
 
The India Meteorological Department (IMD) has forecast intermittent rain or showers during the next 48 hours in the city and its suburbs, with heavy to very heavy fall at a few places and extremely heavy rainfall at one or two places.
 
According to sources, South Mumbai recorded 152 mm of rainfall in the 24 hours ended this morning, the highest during this season so far. The Santacru weather station recorded 88 mm of rainfall during this period.
 
Television pictures showed people wading through knee-deep water at many places and vehicles crawling on the roads and even stranded at many points.
 
The Disaster Management Unit of the Municipal Corporation of Greater Mumbai said that heavy rainfall was expected in the next 24 hours and advised people to stay indoors and not venture out unless required. It said the municipal administration was fully geared up and was monitoring the situation.
 
The Mumbai Police said traffic was moving slowly at many places such as Dadar, Churchgate, Akruti Mall, Andheri, Western Express Highway, Bahar Bridge and Santacruz Airport bridge sliproad due to the rains and waterlogging.
 
It said south-bound traffic towards Matunga was being diverted to Wadala due to waterlogging on Eastern Express Highway, SG Barve Road and V N Purav Road. Waterlogging was also reported at Byculla station (E) near Palace Cinema towards Rani Baug bus stop, it said.
 
Traffic on the Bandra-Worli Sea Link towards South Mumbai has been closed for some time for clearing traffic ahead, the police said, and advised commuters to plan accordingly.
 
The Milan subway and Andheri subway were closed due to waterlogging and traffic was slow at D N Nagar and BMW Junction. It also advised people to avoid going towards Bandra Kurla Complex (BKC) and Bandra East.
 
"High tide of 3.32mts at 16:30. Avoid waterfronts, sitting on tetrapods or on promenades. Pls cooperate with policemen on duty," the police said on Twitter.
 
"Heavy waterlogging expected in the coming hrs due to heavy  showers coupled with high tide. Pls chk ur route b4 venturing out," it said.
 
"Stay indoors as far as possible.Move out only if it is very important. Due to waterlogged roads, traffic not moving and slow at most places," it said.
 
The police advised people to dial 100 if they were stuck on the road or contact it on Twitter. "We will assist you," it said.
 
"If you are still at work, don't panic and leave. A little delay & planned travel may help you better," the police added.
 
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Nine coaches of Nagpur-Mumbai Duronto Express derail, no injuries to any passengers

 
Nine coaches of Nagpur-Mumbai Duronto Express derail
Nine coaches and the engine of the 12290 Duronto Express from Nagpur to Chhatrapati Shivaji Maharaj Terminus (CSMT), Mumbai derailed between Vasind and Asangaon in Maharashtra this morning but none of the passengers was injured, official sources said.
 
The derailment occurred around 6 am, Central Railway spokesman Sunil Udasi told NetIndian. "No one has been reported injured so far," he said.
 
Mr. Udasi said doctors, officers and staff from nearby stations had rushed to the site, about 80 km from Mumbai, and the General Manager and other senior officers of Central Railway had left for the scene.
 
"We are arranging buses to bring passengers to their destination," he said.
 
The train had left Nagpur around 2040 hours last night and was due to reach CSMT, Mumbai at 0755 hours today.
 
According to Central Railway sources, apart from the engine, the coaches which derailed were the first to the ninth from the engine: SLR, H/1, A/1, A/2, A/3, B/1, B/2, B/3 and B/4.
 
Following the mishap, the Railways have diverted, short-terminated and cancelled some trains on the route.
 
The Central Railway has set up the following helplines for the benefit of passengers and their relatives:
 
CSMT 022-22694040
Thane 022-25334840 
Kalyan 0251-2311499 
Dadar  022-24114836
Nagpur 0712-2564342
Bhusaval 02582-222286
Nasik Road 0253-2467863
Manmad 02591-222345
 
This is the fourth derailment on the Indian Railways in the past ten days. On August 19, at least 21 passengers died and 97 others suffered injuries when 14 of the 23 coaches of the 18477 Utkal Express, from Puri in Odisha to Haridwar in Uttarakhand, derailed at Khatauli, about 25 km from Muzzafarnagar, in Uttar Pradesh.
 
On August 23, at least 43 passengers suffered injuries when 12 coaches and the engine of the 12225 Azamgarh-Delhi Kaifiyat Express derailed in Auraiya district of Uttar Pradesh after a dumper collided with the train at an unauthorised crossing.
 
On August 25, five passengers suffered minor injuries when the four front coaches of a local train from Andheri to Chhatrapati Shivaji Maharaj Terminus (CSMT) derailed in the railway yard near Mahim South in Mumbai.
 
After the accidents involving the Utkal Express and the Kaifiyat Express, Railways Minister Suresh Prabhu had met Prime Minister Narendra Modi on August 23 and offered to resign, taking full moral responsibility for them. Mr. Modi, however, asked him to wait.
 
Later that day, the Government accepted the resignation of Railway Board Chairman A. K. Mital and appointed Air India Chairman and Managing Director Ashwani Lohani, an officer of the 1980 batch of the Indian Railways Service of Mechanical Engineers (IRSME), as his successor.
 
On August 20, the day after the Utkal Express accident, the Ministry of Railways suspended four officials and sent three top officials, incuding Railway Board Member Engineering Aditya Mittal, on leave.
 
Based on prima facie evidence, the Junior Engineer (Permanent Way), the Senior Section Engineer (PW) and the Assistant Engineer of the concerned section as well as the Senior Divisional Engineer (II), Delhi Division of Northern Railway had been placed under suspension.
 
Apart from Mr. Mittal, a Secretary-level officer, the General Manager (GM) of Northern Railway, Mr. R. N. Kulshreshtha, and the Divisional Railway Manager (DRM) of Delhi Division, Northern Railway, Mr. R. N. singh, had been sent on leave. The Chief Track Engineer of Northern Railway has been transferred.
 
Mr. M. C. Chauhan, General Manager, North Central Railway, will look after the duties of the post of General Manager, Northern Railway, while Mr. Anshul Gupta, Executive Director (Telecom Development), Railway Board has been temporarily posted as DRM, Delhi Division.
 
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Minor earthquake shakes Koyna region of Maharashtra

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An earthquake of slight intensity, measuring 3.3 on the Richter scale, shook the Koyna region of Maharashtra this afternoon, the India Meteorological Department (IMD) said.
 
The quake, which had its epicentre at latitude 17.1°N and longitude 73.9°E, occurred at 1335 hours at a focal depth of 5 km, an IMD bulletin added.
 
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Minor earthquake jolts Satara region of Maharashtra

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An earthquake of slight intensity, measuring 4.5 on the Richter scale, shook the Satara region of Maharashtra tonight, the India Meteorological Department (IMD) said.
 
The quake, which had its epicentre at latitude 17.3°N and longitude 73.7°E, occurred at 2222 hours at a focal depth of 10 km, an IMD bulletin added.
 
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Minor earthquake recorded in Hingoli region of Maharashtra

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An earthquake of slight intensity, measuring 3.0 on the Richter scale, shook the Hingoli region of Maharashtra today, the India Meteorological Department (IMD) said.
 
The quake, which had its epicentre at latitude 19.5°N and longitude 77.2 °E, occurred at 1205 hours at a focal depth of 10 km, an IMD bulletin added.
 
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ONGC Foundation extends support of Rs 100 crore for world class cancer care facilities in Central India

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The ONGC Foundation has extended a support of Rs 100 crore for a project to establish world class cancer care facilities in Central India.
 
The first phase of the National Cancer Institute (NCI) here was inaugurated yesterday. 
 
Maharashtra Chief Minister Devendra Fadnavis, Union Minister for Road Transport and Highways Nitin Gadkari, Union Power Minister Piyush Goyal, Petroleum and Natural Gas Minister Dharmendra Pradhan and Tata Trust Chairman Ratan Tata were among those present on the occasion.
 
ONGC Foundation is the Corporate Social Responsibility (CSR) Trust of the public sector Oil and Natural Gas Corporation (ONGC).
 
A press release said the NCI was a CSR initiative that would provide world class oncology treatment faciltiies at affordable rates to the general public in Central India.
 
It said NCI would have state-of-the-art facilities for diagnosis, prevention and treatment of cancers. Being the medical hub of central India, Nagpur has been selected to set up the NCI. The NCI will be a 455-bedded quaternary care oncology centre. The project is slated for completion in 2018.
 
Dr. Aabaji Thatte Seva Aur Anusandhan Sanstha is the implementing partner for the project. An agreement was signed between ONGC Foundation and Dr. Aabaji Thatte Seva Aur Anusandhan Sanstha on May 25 this year.
 
The total cost of the project is Rs 565.20 crore. Out of ONGC’s support of Rs 100 crore, Rs 50 crore shall be used for procurement of medical equipment for radio diagnostic facilities (like MRI, CT scan, ultrasound, mammography, X-ray and Bone Marrow Densito meter) to be set up on the ground floor of the institute. The balance Rs 50 crore shall be used for construction of first floor, having the OPD chambers, and the second floor having economy ward. 
 
ONGC has released a sum of Rs 30 crore as the first instalment towards the project.
 
The release said the centre would provide comprehensive cancer treatment, patient care and research through sustainable charity. In addition to providing general cancer care, the institute will also create specialty groups of highly skilled professionals who will be masters in treatment of select group of cancers. The institute also plans to start university-recognized training courses for nurses, paramedical staff and medical fraternity including super specialty training in Oncology and PhD programmes.
 
The primary beneficiaries of the project will be cancer patients belonging to Central India referred by Tata Memorial Hospital, Mumbai and cancer patients identified by the NGOs and local physicians in a 500 km radius of Nagpur. The first phase facilities will help about 1500 – 2000 cancer patients per month, the release added.
 
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Foundation stone laid for Cold Storage Warehouse for onions, other perishables at Lasalgaon

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Railways Minister Suresh Prabhu and Maharashtra Chief Minister Devendra Fadnavis laid the foundation stone for a cold storage facility at Lasalgaon near here on July 30.
 
The facility is being developed by the Container Corporation of India (CONCOR), a public sector undertaking of the Indian Railways.
 
An official press release said the cold storage facility would have a total capacity of 2500 Mt, out of which 1500 MT would be exclusively utilized for onion storage and the remaining for other perishable commodities such as fruits & vegetables like pomegranate, grapes, banana, tomato and citrus.
 
Indian Railways has now steered into the areas of providing storage facility to the farmers and the cold storage at Lasalgaon will be a boon to the farmers of not only Nashik and Lasalgaon but also of nearby areas of Jalgaon, Manmad and Dhule, the release added.
 
The cold storage is being set up on CSR model at a cost of Rs. 5 crore. It will be maintained by Lasalgaon Vibhag Sahakari Kharedi Vikri Sangh Ltd. Railways are a major transporter of onion and play a key role in its transportation to various consumer markets from producer states. To reduce the spoilages, Indian Railways allot the rakes/ wagons on priority basis wherever possible for carriage of onion.
 
The climatic conditions largely affect the onion growing areas thereby leading to fluctuations in farm produce. The bumper production needs to be properly stored to stabilise supply during scarcity. The conventional methods lead to losses exceeding 35% depending on the weather conditions, the release added.
 
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Mumbai building collapse toll rises to 17, rescue operations continue

 
Mumbai building collapse: toll rises to 17
The death toll in the collapse of a four-storeyed residential building in the suburban area of Ghatkopar in Mumbai yesterday has risen to 17 as rescue operations continued today, official sources said.
 
Those killed in the tragedy include seven women and an infant, the sources said.
 
At least 11 others were admitted to various hospitals for treatment of injuries, they said.
 
Apart from fire  brigade, police and civic officials, personnel of various other emergency services, including the National Disaster Response Force (NDRF), were engaged in the rescue efforts.
 
Residents of the ill-fated Siddhi Sai Cooperative Housing Society building alleged that its pillars had been weakened due to renovation works being carried out in a nursing home being run on its ground floor.
 
Police have detained the owner of the nursing home for questioning, the sources said.
 
Maharashtra Chief Minister Devendra Fadnavis visited the scene of the tragedy and took stock of the situation. He expressed grief over the loss of lives and ordered an in-depth inquiry into the incident. He asked the Brihanmumbai Municipal Corporation (BMC) Commissioner to submit its report within 15 days.
 
Mr. Fadnavis promised strict action against those responsible for the tragedy.
 
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CCEA nod for four-laning of Solapur-Bijapur section of NH-52 in Maharashtra, Karnataka

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The Cabinet Committee on Economic Affairs (CCEA) yesterday gave its approval for the four-laning of the Solapur-Bijapur Section of the new National Highway (NH)-52 (formerly NH-13) in Maharashtra and Karnataka. 
 
The project, involving four-laning of about 110 km, is estimated to cost approximately Rs. 1889 crore, including the cost of land acquisition and pre-construction activities, an official press release said.
 
At present, the existing road is a two-lane one and passes through congested towns of Solapur, Takli and Nandani in Maharashtra and Zalki, Horti and Bijapur in Karnataka. It connects Southern India with Northern India and its development will serve as an alternative route to North South Corridor of the National Highways Development Programme, the release said.
 
The project will have bypasses at Solar and Bijapur and involve construction of six flyovers, it said.
 
The road is part of the high-density traffic corridor Banglore-Chitradurga-Bijapur-Solapur-Aurangabad-Dhule-lndore-Gwalior.
 
The provision for two by-passes will ensure decongestion of the urban areas of Solapur and Bijapur. Similarly, the six flyovers would facilitate fast movement of traffic in Solapur, Mandrup, Zalki and Bijapur towns while simultaneously decongesting the areas. The two trucks lay-bys will facilitate smooth movement of freight traffic. The truck drivers would also benefit from the amenities in the two rest areas being developed. On both sides, provision for service roads in 14 km of the project stretch, slip roads in about 40 km and bus shelters at 24 locations will benefit safe, comfortable and smooth movement of long distance commercial traffic as well as movement of local traffic in inhabited/urbanized areas.
 
Tourists will also get benefit of better connectivity to nearby important tourist places of Bijapur, Hampi and Chitradurga, the release added.
 
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Cabinet approves creation of posts of Directors for new AIIMS in Andhra Pradesh, West Bengal and Maharashtra

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The Union Cabinet today approved the creation of three posts of Directors in the pre-revised scale of Rs. 80,000 (fixed) {plus NPA Ceiling limit Rs. 85,000} for the three new All India Institutes of Medical Sciences (AIIMS) at Mangalagiri near Guntur in Andhra Pradesh, Kalyani in West Bengal and Nagpur in Maharashtra. 
 
An official press release said that, as per the AIIMS Act 1956 amended vide AIIMS (Amendment) Act, 2012, there shall be a Chief Executive Officer of the Institute. He shall be designated as the Director of the Institute and shall be appointed by the Institute provided that the first Director of the Institute shall be appointed by the Central Government. 
 
The Director shall act as the Secretary to the Institute as well as the Governing Body and support proper functioning and governance of the three AIIMS. 
 
The post will be immediately filled up following due procedures. The annual financial implication for each of the post of the Director will be around Rs. 25 Lakhs, as per the 6th Central Pay Commission.
 
The Union Finance Minister in his Budget speech for the year 2014-15 had announced for setting up of four new AIIMS in Andhra Pradesh, West Bengal, Maharashtra and Uttar Pradesh. The Cabinet had approved establishment of new AIIMS at Mangalagiri near Guntur in Andhra Pradesh, Kalyani in West Bengal and Nagpur in Maharashtra at a cost of Rs. 4949 crore on 07.10.2015. 
 
The three AIIMS are being set up as a part of the Pradhan Mantri Swasthya Suraksha Yojana (PMSSY) launched in 2003 with objectives of correcting regional imbalances in the availability of affordable/ reliable tertiary healthcare services and also to augment facilities for quality medical education in the country.
 
PMSSY has two components: (i) Setting up of AIIMS like institutions (ii) Upgradation of Government Medical Colleges/Institutions. Under this scheme AIIMS have been established in Bhubaneshwar, Bhopal, Raipur, Jodhpur, Rishikesh and Patna while work of AIIMS Rae Bareli is in progress. Also, three AIIMS in Nagpur(Maharashtra), Kalyani (West Bengal) and Mangalagiri in Guntur (A.P) have been sanctioned in 2015 and two AIIMS have been sanctioned in Bathinda and Gorakhpur in 2016 and Assam in 2017. All necessary steps are being taken for creation of the physical infrastructure and creation of faculty and non-faculty position required for operationalization of these three new AIIMS in Nagpur(Maharashtra), Kalyani(West Bengal) and Mangalagiri in Guntur (A.P). 
 
Design consultants have been appointed for all the three AIIMS on the basis of global bid as per mandate of the Cabinet. The master plans for these AIIMS have also been finalized. Detailed designs are under preparation. Proposals for creation of faculty and non-faculty positions are under consideration/discussion with Department of Expenditure, the release added.
 
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Minor earthquake recorded in Ratnagiri region of Maharashtra

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An earthquake of slight intensity, measuring 3.3 on the Richter scale, was recorded in the Ratnagiri region of Maharashtra in the early hours of today.
 
A bulletin from the India Meteorological Department (IMD) said the quake, which had its epicentre at latitude 17.0°N and longitude 73.7°E, occurred at 0221 hours at a focal depth of 10 km.
 
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Mukherjee to visit Maharashtra, Karnataka on June 17-18

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President Pranab Mukherjee will pay a two-day visit to Maharashtra and Karnataka from June 17 to 18, an official press release said here today.
 
Tomorrow, Mr. Mukherjee will address the convocation ceremony of the passing out Engineering Graduate Courses of College of Military Engineering, Pune. 
 
On the same day, he will attend a function for dedication of the Metro Phase-I Project to the citizens of Bengaluru at Bengaluru, Karnataka.
 
On June 18, the President will lay the foundation stone of the Super Speciality Hospital of BRS Health & Research Institute at Udupi, Karnataka.
 
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Minor earthquake shakes Koyna region of Maharashtra

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An earthquake of slight intensity, measuring 4.8 on the Richter scale, shook the Koyna region of Maharashtra late last night, the India Meteorological Department (IMD) said.
 
The quake, which had its epicentre at latitude 17.1°N and longitude 73.8°E, occurred at 2344 hours yesterday at a focal depth of 10 km, an IMD bulletin added.
 
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India’s first fleet of 200 electric vehicles launched in Nagpur

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Union Minister of Road Transport & Highways Nitin Gadkari and Maharashtra Chief Minister Devendra Fadnavis launched India's first multi-modal electric vehicle project at the Nagpur Airport Complex here yesterday.
 
The project brings together e-buses, e-cabs, e-rickshaws and e-autos on a single platform, the Ola App, which will enable commuters in Nagpur to book them. 
 
The fleet of 200 vehicles consists of 100 of Mahindra’s new e20 Plus vehicles, besides those from other manufacturers like Tata Motors, Kinetic and TVS. 
 
Mr. Gadkari said it was the Government's vision to make India a 100 percent e-vehicle nation. He said his Ministry was prepared to facilitate manufacturers and other companies to take the Nagpur model to other parts of the country. He said e- vehicles need to be promoted in order to cut down the huge crude oil bill, reduce pollution and create cost effectiveness in transportation. To begin with, the emphasis would be on commercial vehicles and then on others. 
 
The Minister said that growing demand, coupled with R&D would gradually help to bring down the operational costs, and especially the battery cost. He added that once the cost of batteries comes down, e-vehicles will compete with diesel and petrol vehicles and finally phase them out. 
 
Mr. Gadkari and Mr. Fadnavis also unveiled Ola's electric charging station, situated within the airport complex. The installation is the first of its kind and will power the fleet. Ola has already invested upward of Rs. 50 crore towards EVs and charging infrastructure, starting with 50+ charging points across four locations in Nagpur. 
 
With a clear focus to build a full fledged ecosystem around sustainable mobility, Ola will also invest in training and educating driver partners on maintenance and use of in-car technology along with its key OEM partners like Mahindra, a press release from the two companies said.
 
Mr. Fadnavis said that his government had, in support of the initiative, waived VAT, road tax and registration for all electric vehicles in the state and hoped Maharashtra would become a model state in this area.
 
Mr. Bhavish Aggarwal, co-founder and CEO, Ola said, “India has the need as well as the potential to set a global example on electric adoption to power its mobility needs. We are excited about how this could transform the mobility experience for millions of citizens, unlock immense opportunity for driver partners and positively impact the environment and quality of life in our cities. The government has been extremely supportive towards kick-starting this initiative and we look forward to working with them and the various industry partners in building the electric vehicle ecosystem grounds up for India. We believe that Electric Mobility in a multi-modal format, will be key towards realizing our mission of building mobility for a billion Indians.”
 
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Dr. Pawan Goenka, Managing Director, Mahindra & Mahindra Ltd. said, “As the pioneers of electric vehicles in India we are delighted to enable  first sustainable shared mobility service in Nagpur, along with the Government of India and Ola. I would like to applaud the Government for its novel mission of accelerating large scale adoption of electric vehicles and Ola for making ‘Green mobility services’ accessible to the people of Nagpur.  True to the spirit of ‘Make-in-India’, we shall lead this change in India along with the Government. This pilot will pave the wave for wider adoption of electric vehicles. I am confident that India will make a paradigm shift in lifestyles - towards smart mobility and smart cities that are driven by progressive Government policies.”
 
Sulajja Firodia Motwani, Founder & CEO of Kinetic Green Energy & Power Solutions Ltd., said, “As India's largest electric three wheeler maker, we are excited to be partnering in this initiative with Ola by supplying 100 of our superior e-rickshaws, Kinetic Safar in Phase 1. These e-rickshaws will play a key part in providing seamless e-mobility at Nagpur, especially for last mile connectivity and for affordable short distance travel.  Kinetic Safar has superior safety features, better design and feature advanced lithium ion batteries. We are keen to bring our offerings to the city of Nagpur on the Ola platform.”
 
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BHEL commissions 270 MW thermal unit in Maharashtra

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The public sector Bharat Heavy Electricals Limited (BHEL) today said it had commissioned another 270 MW thermal unit at RattanIndia Nasik Power Limited’s 5x270 MW thermal power project, located at Sinnar in Nasik district of Maharashtra.
 
This is the fourth unit to be commissioned at this project and the milestone has been achieved within 35 days of commissioning of the third unit, a press release from the company said.
 
So far, BHEL has successfully commissioned 14 sets of 270 MW rating in the country, including 9 sets for the RattanIndia group. In addition to four units at Nasik, BHEL has earlier commissioned 5 sets of 270 MW each at Amravati, for RattanIndia. The fifth unit at the Nasik project is also in advanced stages of completion.
 
BHEL’s scope of work in the project envisaged design, engineering, manufacture, supply, erection and commissioning of Steam Turbines, Generators, Boilers, associated Auxiliaries and Electricals, besides state-of-the-art Controls & Instrumentation (C&I) and Electrostatic Precipitators (ESPs).
 
The equipment for the project was supplied by various manufacturing units of BHEL located at Trichy, Ranipet, Hyderabad, Bengaluru, Bhopal and Haridwar while the construction work was carried out by BHEL’s Power Sector - Western Region.
 
Thermal sets of 270 MW rating are an in-house improvisation of 210/ 250 MW sets supplied earlier by BHEL, which today form the backbone of the Indian power sector and have been performing much above the national average as well as international benchmarks. 
 
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Devendra Fadnavis escapes unhurt as his helicopter crash-lands in Latur

 
Maharashtra CM Fadnavis unhurt after helicopter crash-lands in Latur
Maharashtra Chief Minister Devendra Fadnavis and five others -- three officials, the pilot and the co-pilot -- escaped unhurt when their helicopter crash-landed while attempting to land shortly after take-off because of bad weather in Nilanga town of Latur district, about 480 km from here, today.
 
Video footage of the incident showed the six-year-old Sikorsky helicopter, owned by the state government, getting entangled in electric wires and crash-landing as the pilot tried to descend because of the bad weather.
 
"Our helicopter did meet with an accident in Latur but me and my team is absolutely safe and ok. Nothing to worry," Mr. Fadnavis said on micro-blogging site Twitter later.
 
"With the blessings of people of Maharashtra and nation, I'm safe. My team is fine too. Please do not believe any rumours," he said.
 
The helicopter was badly damaged in the incident, sources said, adding that the Aircraft Accident Investigation Bureau would probe the mishap.
 
Mr. Fadnavis later travelled by road to Latur, about 40 km away, from where he flew to Mumbai in an aircraft that had been arranged for him.
 
According to various accounts, the helicopter took off around noon from Nilanga after Mr. Fadnavis attended an event there. Shortly afterwards, the pilot decided to land because of adverse weather conditions. While descending, the chopper got entangled in wires and crash-landed even as hundreds of people, policemen and other officials looked on.
 
None of those on board suffered any serious injury, sources said.
 
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Maharashtra: Seven dead as SUV collides with truck at Ahmednagar

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All seven occupants of a speeding Bolero sports utility vehicle (SUV) died when it crossed the median after the driver apparently dozed off at the wheel and crashed into an oncoming truck at Ahmednagar in Maharashtra in the early hours of today, police said.
 
Police sources in Ahmednagar told NetIndian over the telephone that the incident occurred around 2 am near Dhangarwadi on the outskirts of the town on the Ahmednagar-Aurangabad highway.
 
The seven men were on a pilgrimage from Pune to Buldhana via Aurangabad, they said. The passengers were sleeping and the driver seemed to have also nodded off and lost control over the vehicle, they said.
 
All seven victims died on the spot. The driver of the truck fled the scene and the police were looking out for him, the sources said.
 
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